Friday, 23 June 2017

The Barony Echo
A Quarterly  of the Barony of Gaultier Historical Society
Issue No. 10       April 2017

Society News
AGM and new Committee.  Our AGM was held in Hayes’s Bar on Monday March 6. A larger than usual number were in attendance.  The outgoing committee was thanked for its work and the new committee was elected which consists of the following:  Michael Farrell. Chairman; Martin McShea, Secretary, Margaret Brooks, Treasurer; John Burke, Vice-chair, and Committee members, Richie Roberts, Mossie  Fitzgerald, Cllr Pat Fitzgerald, Andrew Doherty,  Emer Martin Gordon,  Brendan Dunne,  Ray McGrath, Geoff Power ( Hon Life President),  Ben O’Shea, Brian Gordon.  The Barony Echo wishes the new committee every success.
Summer Evening Walks:  The following is the list of summer evening guided history/heritage walks:  Wednesday June 7, 7.30 pm.  Passage East.  Starting Point is the Community Hall.   On Wednesday July 19, 7.30 pm.  ‘The story of Dunmore’  starting from the Lighthouse, Dunmore East, 7.30 pm.  The final walk of the summer on Wednesday, August 16,  following part of Bóithrín na mBan Gorm, starts in the main car park at Woodstown at 7 pm.    
Friend and Foe 1917:  U-Boat activity and rescue in Waterford Harbour.   During the night of August 4/5, 1917 three Dunmore fishermen,  on hearing an explosion at sea,  set out through the recently laid mines in Waterford Harbour to search for survivors.   They picked up one – the only survivor of the thirty man crew of UC44.   To mark the centenary of this event and to commemorate all those lost at sea in war action in Waterford Harbour in 1917 the Society is hosting a two-day event on August 4 and 5 Friend and Foe, 1917:  U-Boat activity and rescue in Waterford Harbour.   The programme includes a memorial walk, an exhibition, a memorial concert, seminar, laying of a wreath at sea, and unveiling of a Memorial Seat and Plaque.   Details will be posted on our FACEBOOK page, on our webpage,,  and locally in shops.

Winter and Spring Talks
Brendan Dunne, in February,  gave a very well- prepared and well- received talk on the Dunmore East Lifeboat.  We all came away with a great appreciation of what a group of volunteers have achieved – crews, different coxswains, administration and the fund-raising committee.    From all those who go to sea or wait at home for news our heartfelt thanks to all involved.    In March, our speakers were Petrina McHugh ( née Walsh) and Eddie Stewart-Liberty who gave us the story of St Andrew’s Church particularly the interesting history of the building itself. Thanks to our speakers and the Church Vestry for making such an appropriate and comfortable venue available.  Liam Murphy, a Dunmore native, brought us an insight into the life and career of Dr. Thomas Hussey, Bishop of Waterford and Lismore.   Liam’s account of the bishop’s 1797 Pastoral Letter was a major contribution to our understanding of the political turmoil of the period leading up to the Rebellion of 1798.
Killea Church and St Andrews bi-centenary
This year Killea Church will be 200 years old.  We would welcome any information you have on its history.  Email to  St Andrew’s was also built in 1817 with funding from Board of First Fruits and we are also gathering together it’s story.  Items please.

The Battle of Ballymacaw and the War of the Roses
Who would have thought that the infamous War of the Roses in 15th century England would have one of its scenes played out in the secluded Gaultier village of Ballymacaw.   Here’s the story.   The powerful Power family of Curraghmore had land and probably sea interests in Dunmore.  After all it was one of them that built Dunmore Castle.  They and the O’Driscolls of Baltimore formed an alliance and were in intermittent war with the City of Waterford for over 200 years.   In the year 1460 one of the contestants in the English War of the Roses, Richard, Duke of York,  came to Waterford to regroup his thoughts and forces and to plan an attack on the King in England, his Lancastrian rival, Henry V1.  Clearly, the city of Waterford supported the Yorkist cause in the person of Richard.   The Powers and O’Driscolls, never ones to turn down an opportunity to defy the mayor and good citizens of Waterford,  are thought to have prepared an ambush on Richard as he was leaving Waterford to further his cause in England.  The motive for this attempted seizure of the Duke of York, according to Randolph Jones who last year gave the 2016 Niall Byrne Memorial Lecture on the subject, was a request from the Butler family who were supporters of the Lancastrian cause and therefore of the current King, Henry VI.   Word was brought to the Mayor of Waterford that the Power’s and the O’Driscolls who had joined forces after the latter landed there were now camped at Ballymacaw.  The Mayor organised a force which attacked the camp at Ballymacaw and easily won the day taking with them to Waterford three of the O’Driscoll galleys, an action that led to the inclusion of three ships in the Waterford Coat of Arms. 
Barony Townlands
In this issue we continue our series on Gaultier townlands.   This is, as they say, a work in progress,  and we would be very grateful if you can forward to us at any information you have on our townlands.
Ballinvella:  Situated to the west of Belle Lake, the townland comprises 251 acres and was in the old civil parish of Kilmacleague.   According to Canon Power, the name is derived from the Irish, Baile an Bhile, Townland of the Yew Tree.  The stump of the last windmill functioning in Gaultier is found near the centre of the townland.   It is possible that an old road, part of Bóthar na mBan Gorm passed through this townland.
Ballybeg:   The townland of Ballybeg is now within the Waterford city limits.  The Irish is Baile Beag which presents no translation problem – Small Town -  which suggests a distinction from a larger town, possibly Waterford.  However Canon Power, whose opinion needs to be considered, gives the Irish as Baile Bocht  - Poor Town.    He adds….’the real name was changed about a century ago (early eighteen hundreds) for reasons other than euphonic’.    The townland comprises 257 acres and was in the old civil parish of Kilbarry.
Ballycanvan:   Two sub-townlands here comprising 340 acres.  Canon Power has the Irish as Baile uí Cheannabháin – O’Canavan’s townland.   The areas, although generally fertile,  has some boggy areas and Interestingly the Irish for the lonely bog-cotton wild flower  is ceannabhán.  Ballycanavan lies just outside the city boundary on the left hand side of the Cheekpoint road between Jack Meades pub and Strongbow’s Bridge (also called Cromwell’s Bridge and Dobbyn’s Bridge)
Ballydavid:  A townland of 227 roughly between Woodstown Cross and Woodstown.   Baile Uí Dhaithí as given by Power is the Irish version.  As with many townland names when named for a family or person, there is often nothing in the archives nor in community memory to fill in the story of its naming.
Ballyglan:     Baile an Ghleanna according to Power is the Irish. The ‘glen’ is certainly there running down to Woodstown beach.     Ballyglan lies between the Fairy Bush and Woodstown and is bordered on the west by Harristown and on the north by Woodstown and Woodstown Upper.   Ballyglan House which still stands was a prominent social landmark in the story of Ballyglan and part of that story is the popular sport of The Hunt.  See item on page 4  in this edition.  Another interesting fact about Ballyglan is its boundary with Harristown – a portion of Bóithrín na mBan Gorm.  The townland counts 381 acres and lies in the old civil parish of Kill St Nicholas  
Ballygarron:  Comprising 412 acres in the vicinity of the airport, the townland’s Irish name is Baile an Gharáin, townland of the Grove according to Power.    Dineen mentions ‘ooze from limestone’… but is there any limestone in Ballygarron?    There was an eviction here on June 8, 1881 when the Morriseys were put out of their house by agents of landlord Carew.      The  Corbally Ladies Land League came to the rescue and provided a hut in the townland of Kilmacleague.  Ballygarron is also the birthplace of our Gaultier historian, Matthew Butler.
Coastal Placenames
Many of our coastal placenames are unknown to the general public and some are forgotten even by the fishing community.  The Barony Echo continues its Coastal Placenames series in this issue for the section Portally Cove to the Entrenchment just before Rathmoylan Cove.    The two main sources are Canon Power’s Placenames of the Decies,   and Stephen Whittle, retired coxswain of the Dunmore Liifeboat, whose spellings are retained here. Dineen refers to his dictionary.   The exact location of some of these names is not known to the editor.  If you can offer help in this matter it will be much appreciated. Carraig na mBhád.    Whittle.  Probably the Rock of the boats or boat.  Whittle puts it next to Portally Cove.    Poll uí Chadogáin.  Power.  Cadogan’s Pool or Hole.  We have no knowledge of Cadogan.   Poula Shagadane.  Whittle,  but   Poll a’tSéine according to Power  The Hole or Pool of the Seine Net.  Power puts this east of Portally Cove but a local fisherman, Buddy (Fancy) Power, has it just west of the Cove.  Buddy has the story of the Portally women carrying the seine net from the village to the cliff top and dropping it to the men below.    The Navel.   Whittle.   Dubh Ubh.  Whittle.  Probably Black Cave.   Uaimh is Irish for cave according to Dineen.    Faill na gCaorach.   Power.  Cliff of the Sheep.   Knock na Vhar.  Whittle.  Power has Leac na bhFearr – Ledge of the Men.   Glas Sue Mhór.  Whittle.  Exact spot uncertain but Whittle places it near Portally Cove.  The Glas in this name could have been derived from Clais, a cleft or gully.     Glas See Bheg.  Whittle.  Meaning is unclear but it could refer to a ‘clais’ meaning cleft in the cliff, a name  that occurs between Brownstown and Saleens.    Uaimh Dhubh.  Power.  Black Cave.   On Doyle’s 1737 chart of Waterford Harbour it is halfway between Portally Cove and Falskirt ( a large rock about 800 metres off Swine Head).  Power tells us it is a big cave with a height equal to that of the aisle of a church.    The Ship.  Whittle.  Possibly the clearly visible sea-stack near the cliff-face.   Named for its outline resembling that of a ship.    Port na Lanaibhe.   Whittle.  Probably Haven of the Children.  Was there a disaster here?    Poll a Brandy.  Whittle.  Hole or Pool of the Brandy.   Not too far-fetched to think of smuggling!     Uabh voon Naun.  Whittle.  Obscure apart from uabh which probably is uaimh meaning cave.    Falskirt Rock.  Whittle.  This is a dangerous rock which just about covers at high tide.  Already mentioned.  Meaning obscure but the first part could refer to ‘cliff’ and the second syllable to ‘scairt’ meaning separation.   Swines Head.   Whittle.  Meaning obscure.  An important landmark marked on many navigation charts.    The Entrenchment.  Power.  The site of a promontory fort.  Very likely dating from the Iron-Age and one of several promontory forts along the Waterford coast.  (The Society recently commissioned an aerial survey of this site)
The Gaultier Harriers
In February Maurice Whittle of Killure and I had an interesting conversation regarding the Gaultier Harriers and Sir Robert Paul of Ballyglan.  The Hunt,  an important social and sporting event in Gaultier, if indeed restricted to a particular social class prior to WWI and then again from the mid 1920s, was led by Paul until his retirement as Master of the Hounds in 1930.   In 1923, Mr Darrell Gallwey gave a pack of harriers to Sir Robert.   They became known as the Gaultier Harriers and hunted east Waterford and south Kilkenny.  By 1930  ‘their country measured fifteen miles by twenty-five miles’.  At our February conversation Maurice gave me an article from the magazine Hounds (December 1993) by James E. Norton,  a now rare description of one particular chase in Gaultier ‘On the 3rd of March, 1925 hounds met at Woodstown Gate.  They first drew Woodstown Marshes opposite the kennels and at about 11.50 they got away on good terms with their pilot.  In spite of a rather catchy scent they pushed him through Woodstown Demesne, through Kilbride Covert, across the Folliune(sic) Road and onto the high ground above Belle Lake nearly to the Gaultier Creamery.  Here he was headed and turned left handed pass (sic) the Fairy Bush, he went in direction of Harristown and short of this covert, he turned left-handed into Woodstown again.  Hounds worked on him steadily without being touched and pushing him through Woodstown and Kilbride Covert he headed for Ballyglan.  Here he ran past some unstopped earths and did a short circle and came back in the direction of Belle Lake.’  And the description continues in this colourful vein of language.  Linguistically it is a treasure.  This particular chase lasted two hours with Misses de Bromhead, Mrs Spark, Miss Goff,  Major Carew, Miss Richardson and Mr David finishing the run. Is the Kilbride mentioned here locally known as Sir’s Cover?)  (Thanks for this Maurice).
Do you have a story or an item of information?  It would be welcomed.     Send it to Ray McGrath