DONOUGHMORE, a parish, in the barony of UPPER-TALBOTSTOWN, county of WICKLOW, and province of LEINSTER, 5 miles (N. E.) from Baltinglass; containing 4130 inhabitants. This parish is situated on the river Slaney, and in the glen of Imail, which abounds with excellent pasturage: it comprises 25,202 statute acres, about 8100 of which form a large tract of mountain, having an extensive bog at its base. The land is in tillage and pasture, and great numbers of calves are fattened here, and large quantities of butter made for the Dublin market. The scenery is bold and rugged, contrasting strikingly with the milder character of the adjacent glen. At Knocknamunion is a factory for making blankets and frieze, and there is a granite quarry at Knockaderry. In this parish stand the Leitrim barracks, which were erected after the disturbances of 1798, at an expense of about £8000: they have been recently disposed of to a private individual.
The seats are Coolmoney, the residence of Lady Louisa Hutchinson, a handsome and newly erected mansion, commanding fine views of the glen of Imail; and Ballinclea, of Richard Fenton, Esq. Donoughmore is a prebend in the cathedral church of St. Patrick, Dublin, in the patronage of the Archbishop: the tithes amount to £461. 10. 9¼. The glebe-house is situated about three-quarters of a mile from the church, on a glebe comprising 20 acres. The church was rebuilt in 1711, and the present tower added to it, in 1821, by aid of a loan of £400 from the late Board of First Fruits: it has been recently repaired. Evening service is also performed, during summer, in the school-house at Knockenargan.
In the R. C. divisions the parish forms part of the union or district of Dunlavin and Donard; the chapel is at Davidstown. There are four schools, one of which is supported by the Trustees of Erasmus Smith's charity; the parochial school, near the church, was erected in 1821, by subscription; and one at Knockenargan was erected, in 1834, also by subscription, on half an acre of land given for the site by the Earl of Wicklow: in these schools about 120 boys and 70 girls are taught, and about 80 more boys and 60 girls in six private schools.
A loan fund was established in 1824; Mrs. Caldwell left £20 per annum, late currency, to the Protestant poor; and the interest of £200 stock was left by the late Dr. Ryan, who was rector of this parish, in 1818, to five poor Protestants and five poor Roman Catholics.
On the townland of Castleruddery are several raths, or Danish mounds; the most conspicuous is one of considerable height on the grounds of Mr. J. Wilson, and on the same land is a druidical circle of about 120 feet in diameter, round which are numerous blocks of stone, some not of the district, and in the centre of the circle there was no doubt an altar. Adjoining the garden is a pond, in which skeletons of the elk, or moose deer, hav been found. On the same townland a flint spear-head was found, on ploughing a field in 1829. At Knockenargan there are two raths, and another at Gibstown; at Knockendaragh is a very extensive one, which is surrounded by a rampart and fosse; there is another above Old Deer park, at Castleruddery, which is moated, besides several others in the parish. Near the little village of Knockendaragh is a cromlech. Eardestown and Brusselstown hills, the former 1314, and the latter 1305, feet above the level of the sea, are in this parish: the summit of the latter is encircled by three concentric mounds, the lowest of which is about half way down the declivity of the hill, and, with the next above it, is formed of rough loose stones; the uppermost is constructed of large unhewn blocks, piled up to a considerable height, forming round the summit of the hill a kind of mural crown, perceptible at a great distance.
There is an old burial-place near Leitrim Barracks, used by the Roman Catholics; also slight remains of a seat called Seskin, and another called Snugborough, built by Col. Percy, about 1695; the former is now the property of the Earl of Wicklow, and the latter that of Harman Herring Cooper, of Shrewl Castle, Esq.
from Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837.
The transcription of the section for this parish from the National Gazetteer (1868), provided by Colin Hinson.
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