Posted by murrisk on November 17, 2000 at 03:10:29:
The Union workhouse was built during or after the famine. It had two schools (boys and girls ?), its own R.C.Chapel and a graveyard. By the 1860's Castlebar had an asylum.
It was either associated with or became the " Farm" on the Lucan estate which was near the end of a road which, I think, much later became McHale Road. The "Farm" was later the site
of the Bacon Factory. In the 1870's, the Catholic Cemetry covered a small circular area on the height of land immediately opposite the entrance to the cemetery. This area can be
discerned on the airphotos posted by M on November 12,2000. By the late 1890's, the cemetery covered the area of the old cemetry shown on the airphotos. The white area of new
graves shown at the bottom of the photos is an area added to the graveyard much later in the 1900's. By the 1890's the Protestant graveyard, beside the TF, had been established as
had Christ Church School - the old Protestant school near the Tennis Pavilion. As well, a Presbyterian Church had been established on Lower Charles Street near its junction with
Richard Street. Since at least the 1830's, the R.C. Church was located in Upper Chappel Street and its name, judging from correspondence on the Roots Board, was the Church of
the Holy Rosary. By 1900 the new R.C. Church was under construction (parts of it actually collapsed during a storm in 1900), as was the R.C. Presbytery and St. Gerrard's Technical
School. This was of course our beloved (?) St. Gerald's. By the 1890's a much larger and new asylum had been built - it was later known as St. Marys. The asylum had its own Catholic
Church attached. I understand this fine old, historic church is to be closed - unfortunate with a growing population. The asylum also had its own graveyard which was located near to
boundary with the Curragh townland. Nowadays, there are new houses built on top of the graveyard. I don't think the "internees" were exhumed before the houses were built.
I wonder if the occupants know............. The asylum was in the townland of Knockacroghery, Spencer Park was in the townland of Curragh, while the Lawn and what later became
McHale Road were in the townland of Gorteendrunagh.The new asylum had a sports ground and ball alley. The sports ground still exists. The Catlebar Sports used to be held here
in July or August. The Wynne Collection features photos from at least August 1896. I have family photos from July 1914 just before WW1 broke out. During WW11 the asylum had a large
white cross painted on its roof to identify it as a hospital in case of invasion or a bombing raid. I believe the county hospital and the (then) County Home had similar crosses painted on
their roofs. (Some American pilots did parachute from a crippled plane in the Nephin area. We had fragments of the parachute material in the house when I was a kid). By the late 1860's,
the Castlebar and Westport Railway had been constructed. It was probably around this time that the river which runs under part of Lovers Lane, past Creagh's Villa, behind St. Patrick's
Avenue, and eventually empties into Lough Lannagh over the weir behind the graveyard, was partly created. The river , which does not appear to have existed prior to the establishment
of the railway, was probably created to drain a swampy extension at the west end of Saleen Lake through which the railway was pushed. Of course Creagh's Villa no longer exists - who
was Creagh? I belive it was constructed in the 1820's. In much later years we new it as Gillespies (Connaught Telegraph). It was torn down to make way for the new Lough Lannagh Village.
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