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Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)

Nationalist Directory Carlow of 1888

Page 1

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 NATIONALIST Directory for County Carlow 1888

Carlow is an inland county. Its length from North to South is 29 miles, and its breadth from East to West is 20½ miles; comprising an area of 221,344 statute acres, of which about 193,649 acres are arable, 2,933 under plantations, 4,658 bog and marsh, 10,901 barren mountain, 8,705 under roads, fences, etc., and 498 under water. The R.I.C. force consists of four officers and 114 men. The county is in the Dublin Military District.

Carlow town

Carlow is picturesquely and advantageously situated on the eastern bank of the river Barrow, over which is a bridge of five arches connecting it with the suburban village of Graigue. It is of considerable extent and contains more than sixteen good streets.

Within the last two years the Town Commissioners have established a public market for the sale of butter, fowl, eggs, and fish, and a public council under municipal control. A separate market for the sale of potatoes is held in another part of the town, called, on that account, Potato-market.

The trade of the town has been very well maintained during the late years of depression, although most of its ancient industries — such as brewing, distilling, and tanning — have disap­peared. There are several large flour mills in the town and its vicinity. The mineral water manufactory of Messrs. Corcoran & Co. is a most flourishing concern.

There are two foundries in the town, and the industries of saddle and harness making, building, carpentry, painting, boot-making, cabinet making. chandlery, plumbing, bookbinding, upholstering, coachbuilding, brass and tin working, are well represented.

Cabinetmaking and upholstering are carried on by Messrs. Albert Morris & Co., Tullow-street, W. Douglas, Dublin-street, and P. O'Brien, Potato-market.

There are three printing establishments in the town, and it may be truly said that the style of work turned out is not surpassed in any provincial town in Ireland. Two newspapers are printed and published in Carlow — The Nationalist, price 2d., advocating as its name indicates the national programme, and the Carlow Sentinel, which is the local organ of the landlord and Conservative Party. The retail trade of the town is done in a very superior manner, and goods can be obtained of metropolitan quality and price.

Town Commissioners of Carlow exercise the Urban Sanitary Authority, and have control of the streets and footpaths. These latter powers were transferred from the Grand Jury by a provisional order of the Local Government Board in the year 1883.

Streets are kept in excellent repair, but the lighting, being by oil lamps, is not all that could be desired.

Water supply is obtained from public and private pumps. Some time back a project was set on foot to obtain a supply from the hills at Killeshin, but it fell to the ground.

Public buildings

Notable among the Public Buildings of Carlow is the new Town Hall, standing in Hay-market. The building was commenced in 1883, and opened in March, 1886. Messrs. Connolly, of Upper Dominick-street, Dublin, were the contractors for the work, and the architect was Mr. William Hague.

The entire cost of the Town Hall and new Market Place amounts to nearly £4,000 (including a sum in dispute claimed for extra works). The building is commodious and conveniently laid out.

Adjoining the building is a public market for hay, straw, butter, fowl, eggs and fish.

The Courthouse, a large and stately building surrounded by railings of artistic design, is erected at the entrance of the town, at the junction of the Athy and Castledermot roads.

Further down, on the Athy road, is the District Lunatic Asylum. It provides accommodation for patients from the counties Carlow and Kildare, and is supported by presentiments from the Grand Jury of each.

The Roman Catholic College of St. Patrick is situated in the immediate vicinity of the town, and adjoining the Cathedral. It stands on a slight eminence in a beautiful and well wooded park of considerable extent. It was one of the first colleges established in Ireland after the .relaxation of the Penal Laws by the Irish Parliament in 1782, and has contributed quite a number of illustrious names to the ranks of the hierarchy and priesthood both at home and abroad.

It was founded by the Very Rev. Luke Keeffe, Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin, with the assistance of the Very Rev. Dean Staunton, then Parish Priest of Carlow.

Building of the college was commenced about the year 1787, and it was opened for the reception of students in 1793. Dean Staunton became its first president.

A beautiful new Chapel has recently been erected in the college grounds at an expense of over £6,000. The building is worthy of the institution and of the taste and skill of the Rev. President.

The Roman Catholic Cathedral, an imposing temple, was erected by the great Dr. Doyle, and was commenced in 1828. The architect was a Mr. Thomas A. Cobden.

The statue of Dr. Doyle, a gem of art, and said to be Hogan's masterpiece, adorns the church.

The statue was sculptured at Rome and cost £1,300.

Adjoining the cathedral is the Presentation Convent, founded in 1810. The present spacious and handsome building was completed in 1875. The good sisters afford gratuitous education to about 400 female children. The Convent of the Sisters of Mercy was established in 1837.

The Christian Brothers Schools, in College-street are largely attended.

Another educational establishment has been recently opened in Browne-street, under the superintendence of the President and Professors of the College. It is called St. Lazerian's Classical and English Seminary. There is also a Protestant Diocesan School called the Browne School, an academy in Montgomery-street, C. McQuaide, M.A., Principal, and a ladies' seminary in Burrin-street.

The Protestant Parochial Church is an imposing and commodious structure

St. Anne's (the Bruen Memorial) Church, situate on the Athy-road, is a model of architectural beauty. (It was translated stone-by-stone in the 1930's and rebuilt as St. Clare's Parish Church, Graiguecullen).

The workhouse is situated about half a mile outside the town on the Kilkenny-road. It

is a very ornamental structure, and scarcely in keeping with the use for which it was designed.

Clubs and societies

There are several clubs and societies in the town, the principal being the Club of the Catholic Young Men's Society, established in 1886.

In connection with the institution there is an Athletic and Football (Gaelic) Club, and a Literary Society. The President is the Rev. E. Kavanagh, Adm.; and the Secretary, John Hammond, Esq., C.T.C.

The Carlow Protestant Christian Young Men's Association have their rooms in Burrin-street.

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Transcribed by M. Brennan from the Nationalist Supplement 1983

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© 2001 County Carlow Genealogy IGP