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Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)

St. Brigid’s Hospital


Source: Carloviana 1959 & 2005

St. Brigid’s Hospital formally Whitmore’s Hotel

Photo: Donal Godfrey

Whitmore’s Hotel, now St. Brigid’s Hospital, was another of the posting inns dating from stagecoach days. In 1842 it was listed as belonging to “Samuel Whitmore (family and posting hotel).” About this time, Mr. Whitmore added a ballroom which became the fashionable centre for the nobility and gentry of the day and was the scene of many a genteel Quadrille, party and county ball. Ten of the bedrooms in Whitmore’s Hotel were “furnished to repletion with four-post Albert and French mahogany bedsteads, hair mattresses,” etc. The stables included seven­teen carriages and cars (some of them little used), an omnibus and a hearse for two or four horses with black and white plumes, and there were ten horses, young and fresh, suited for either posting or the farm.”

Just over 100 years ago Whitmore’s was The Hotel of Carlow, for we read in the “Handbook for Travellers in Ireland” dated 1844: -“The principal inn is the Club House, Whitmore’s, where good post horses and car­riages can be obtained.” And when Mr. Lacy of “Home Sketches” fame was in Carlow in that very year, in that year, in connection with the laying of the railway line to Carlow, he put up at Whitmore’s.

 One of the last great ceremonies for which Mr. Whitmore had to make the arrangements was held not in the Club House Hotel but in the Assembly Rooms. This was a banquet for the Officers of the County Carlow who had fought in the Crimean War; there were 65 persons present. The dinner was supplied by Mr. Whitmore “to whose superintendence it did great credit. All the delicacies and vari­ety of the season were in great profusion, and the juice of the generous grape helped to spread its cheering influence on all the company.”

 Mr. Whitmore gave up the Hotel and Posting Establishment in 1857 and the effects were sold by public auction in October of that year. It was then, or later, taken over by Mr. Arthur Barrow and has been referred to as The Barrow Hotel.’ Towards the end of the last century it was known as “The County Club House” and “Livery Stables” and Hunt Balls and similar functions were still being held there by the gentry of the Co. Carlow.

Source: Carloviana 1959 & 2005 

Main Entrance from Dublin Street
Side entrance
St. Brigid's Hospital Nursing Home

Images of St. Brigid's Hospital, Carlow taken by W. Muldowney c2006

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