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Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)

The Night of the Big Wind


Sunday 6th January 1839

County Carlow

The hurricane did serious injury in Carlow.  Though not, that we have learned, to the same extent as in other places. The Catholic Cathedral had one of the pinnacles of the steeple tower blown down it will require some hundreds of pounds to repair the damage.

We heard of one man, who, on Monday morning, sold ten shillings worth of slates, which he had gathered in the streets, as blown from houses during the night. The upper roofs of the most substantial edifices, and the walls down to their foundations shook, as if from the effects of an earthquake, and the great portion of the people of the town remained up all night.

In the outer parts of the town there was a greater number of cabins completely unroofed, and rendered uninhabitable.

A great number of the valuable trees on the demesne of Browne's Hill, on Mr. Faulkner's demesne at Castletown, and in other places, were torn up by the roots. Colonel Bruen's demesne wall was broken down in several places. In short, so much damage was never heard of in Carlow. Only the more terrific accounts from other parts of the country afford the people reason to be thankful to Providence for their milder lot. (L.I.)

Mr. Thomas C. Butler had a very narrow escape, having only left his bedroom when the ceiling was burst in by the weight of the chimneys. One of the back windows of the Club house, sash and all, were forced in, and shattered at atoms, and it required the united strength of the men to keep the shutters closed while means of security were being procured. (D.J.)

One of the ornamental spires that crowded the beautiful octagonal tower of the Roman Catholic Cathedral was blown off, and coming with great violence against the roof of the building, smashed it in, and came down on the front gallery, shattering it almost to a wreck.

The solitary chimney that topped one of the great towers of the ancient castle of Carlow, and which withstood the breeze for six hundred years, was also blown away. There has been great destruction of property, particularly on the Queen's county side, in the shape of corn in stack, cattle, trees, roofs of thatched houses, and hay, which have been scattered in all directions. (T.H.)

From THE NIGHT OF THE BIG WIND by Peter Carr White Row Press ISBN I 8701 32 50 5

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