23 May 2017
Patrick Rafferty :
I greatly enjoyed going through your website on the people and places of Carlingford. I even came across a couple of “Rafferty” references”. Much of my interest in the people and places of Carlingford stems from my interest in my family’s history.
My great grandfather, Thomas Rafferty, was born in Carlingford on 3 Jan 1868. A year or two later he immigrated to America with his parents, Patrick Rafferty and Mary (McKitrick) Rafferty. (His parents’ marriage was registered in Dundalk on 4 Jan 1866).
In 1892, Thomas Rafferty married Margaret Killen in Ovid, New York. Margaret Killen was born on Carlingford in April of 1864 (or thereabouts). Margaret was the daughter of Michael and Elizabeth Killen of Carlingford, and the granddaughter of Mathew Killen and Margaret (Ryan) Killen.
Much of the information on the earlier Killens comes from an exchange of letters I had in 1998 with George Killen of Carlingford. He would be my grandfather’s first cousin. I had been directed to George Killen by another of my grandfather’s first cousins, Fr. Joseph Burke, S.J. I was told that Father Joe made a number of visits to Carlingford. He passed away in Philadelphia in 2003. I have lost contact with George Killen. If he is still around he would be about 87 years old.
I will be on holiday in Ireland in June, and will be staying in Carlingford from June 11 to 14. I was hoping that perhaps you could recommend some people or places or cemeteries I should visit while I am in Carlingford.
Any advice you could give would be greatly appreciated.
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3 May 2017
Thank you!More > (0 comments)
29 March 2017
Newry Street Post Office :
The first twenty years, or so, of my life I spent in that village and what a wonderful
boyhood l had!
My mother, Frances, ran the Post Office from approx. 1946 until her death in 1957. She
had worked in the old Post Office before her marriage. It was situated in the building
where Eileen (Mrs.Thornton) now lives. She had been sent there as a newly trained
morse code operator to assist the elderly postmistress, a Mrs.Martin. By co-incidence
shortly after her marriage she would end up living right next door and some few years
later that's where the new Post Office was based.
My father, Charlie, worked in the railway offices at Greenore Junction.
At the far end of the Newry St. you can just make out small notice boards on
the wall of that second last house. It was the old Police Barracks. My grandfather
William was assigned there from Dundalk as sergeant. He originated from Roundwood
Co.Wicklow. Cardinal Logue befriended him. It was partly because, we think, he admired
the practice of the police March through the streets to Mass every Sunday and
he enjoyed participating in target shooting quite often with my grandfather. My father
recalled how the Cardinal was in fact a 'crack shot'!
Where the cinema was built there used to be an old store and before that the old
courthouse. It was burnt down in the 'Trouble'.
I well recall the fun we had while the cinema was being built; some jumping onto the
running boards of the lorries as they shunted and stalled and pranged amidst the
clouds of dust and the blasting of rocks and not such genteel language in accompaniment.
My maternal grandfather was a deep sea schooner skipper. He shipped out of Annagassan
harbour which was an important port estuary in those days. In retirement he was the Pilot
there and had many unusual experiences. Once he piloted a fanciful yacht carrying the
young bride and groom setting off on honeymoon from Castlebellingham Castle just
after their wedding. They were aristocrats, one a Bellingham.
My paternal grandmother had nine children. Her funeral, we understand went from Cford
to her native Cootehill area by train. William remarried and had three more boys, born
here. Vincent, Christopher and Richard.
My paternal grandfather is buried in Holy Trinity Cemetery. My maternal grandfather is
buried in Killsaran.
May Jesus enfold them all in His love.
Cathal DelaneyMore > (0 comments)
29 January 2017
Son of John Smyth Castletown Cooley
Many happy holidays over the years and memory's More > (0 comments)
29 January 2017
Pastimes before the advent of Radio and TV.
The popular pastimes in the village in the 1940s and into the 1950s were football , standing at Bob Mc Garrell’s corner discussing world, national and local affairs; hunting rabbits and kibbing birds; chatting in Mc Shanes tea shop or, straight across from it, Rice’s; chasing (see below); competing in the annual regatta; attending, or performing in, concerts in the “Hall " as the Parochial Hall was commonly called ; playing billiards and playing cards, whist drives and Sunday night dances in the same hall; attending plays in the Wee Lane Hall and the parochial hall; badminton in the hall; first aid classes; Irish classes in Greenore: sports days in Wood’s field which usually included tug o war, the main rivals in this sport being Rathcor and Glenmore; drinking bottles of Guinness a minority pastime then; racing on four-wheelers (home- made from pram wheels and timber) down Mc Kevitt’s Hill, the Convent Hill and the Castle Hill, the roads during the war years being virtually free of motor traffic; robbing orchards; attending October Devotions and indulging in some larking about coming home in the dark; the occasional trip on Keenans buses to Dundalk or Newry to see a film and possibly treat oneself to fish and chips.
There was no TV, no video games, no CDs, no mobile phones and not much money floating about.
Carlingford in the 1940s was a TV free zone as was, indeed, each of the 32 counties. Only a minority of homes had wireless sets in the early 40s and crowds gathered the radio (powered by wet batteries) in the Parochial Hall on Sundays to listen to Michael O Heir’s dramatic broadcasts of big games in Croke Park and in various provincial centres such as Thurles. Next door the front window in Danny McKevitt’s front room would be opened to allow those gathered outside to enjoy O Heir’s lively commentaries. A point of interest here: wireless sets made in what was then the Free State listed a station under the title The Six Counties.
In 1948 a group of business men M. J. O Rourke, coal merchant, was one and the then head of the Kearney family of Wilville - JP or, if he was dead at that stage, his son Donal - was another) opened a cinema in Newry St. on a site created by the demolition of Kearneys store. Photos/stills of Hollywood stars adorned the lobby (June Haver was one of the stars on show) and the admission price for the body of the hall was 1 shilling and 8 pence with lower prices at the very front and higher prices for the few raised rows at the rear. The opening film, as far as I recall, was Wings of the Morning featuring a Sunny Tufts and horse racing and the voice of John McCormack.
The cinema was a big success for a number of years. Bill Boyd playing Hopalong Cassidy entertained the younger element and some senior citizens too, practically every Sunday. The operator was, as far as I recall, Leslie Adamson and possibly also, his brother the late jack Adamson. Others involved at the box office and as usherettes were, as far as I remember: Doris Hanlon, Margaret Boyle, Laura McKevitt and Billie Cunningham
Telafis Eireann opened on New Years Eve 1961, President Eamon de Valera presiding at the inauguration. UTV was available in the North East of the country somewhat earlier having come on air on 31 October 1959. The 1940s was a TV free decade and sometime in the 1950s UTV and BBC Northern Ireland were available to those few with TV sets but reception tended to be poor and clarity was denied by a more or less perpetual drift of snowflakes.TV sets were few ( later on Des Boyle abandoned his bicycle business â?" where Michael Thornton and Eileen now live on Newry St.- and got into the more lucrative business of selling TV sets as demands for them rose rapidly). Hugh OHare’s father of the late PJs had a TV in his bar and many gathered there to see the sad scenes shot at Munich when the Manchester United team lost many fine players in the air disaster in 1958.
Some of the pastimes mentioned above merit a separate short article each. Suffice here to explain about “Chasing”. This was an activity for after dark and involved the young participants separating into two groups: one or two did the chasing and the rest shot off to hide. The chasers tried to locate the various hiders. The game ender when all were located but as that was a rare enough event it was deemed advisable not to drag out the game pointlessly and the chaser/s would signal a new round, entailing new chasers/hunters by calling loudly “All in” “All in”. This sport nearly always began outside Rice’s shop (between the Centra supermarket and the Carlingford Arms or, at the time, Wood’s butcher shop and Bob Mc Garrell and those hiding did so within an area not more than roughly 200yards from this starting point.
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