Lewis’ Topographical Dictionary, Ireland

Lewis’ Topographical Dictionary Ireland comprises of several counties, cities, boroughs, parish and villages – with historical and statistical descriptions – of Ireland.

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    GLENCOLLUMBKILLE, a parish, in the barony of BANNAGH, county of DONEGAL, and province of ULSTER 11.50 miles (N. W. by W.) from Killybegs ; containing 3752 inhabitants.

    This parish, which is on the north- west coast, includes within its limits Tellen head and Malin bay, and, according to the Ordnance survey, comprises 2,243.75 statute acres, of which 329 are water, and 61.75 are in Rathlin O'Birne islands, belonging to Kilbarron parish. Agriculture is backward; the waste land consists of large tracts of sand, bog, and mountain among the last of which are Malin Beg, rising 1415, Glenlough 1513 and Slieve League1964 feet above the level of the sea. Four fairs are held at Carrick annually.

    The living is a consolidated rectory and vicarage, in the patronage of the Bishop : the tithes amount to £115. The glebe-house was erected by a gift of £369. 4s., and a loan of the same amount from the late Board of First Fruits, in 1828. The glebe comprises 40 acres, of which 15 are cultivated land and the remainder bog, rock, and pasture. The church is a plain building, erected by aid of a gift. of £553. 16s. from the late Board, in 1828.

    The Roman Catholic parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church, and contains two chapels.

    About 220 children are educated in three public schools, of which the parochial school is aided by an endowment from Col. Robertsons fund.

    On the summit of Slieve league are the remains of a religious house : here are also some ruins of a castle. On the site of the present church orderly stood a monastery, of which scarcely a vestige left, except a subterraneous passage, which was discovered a few years since on digging a grave. A ruin is pointed out as having been the residence of St. Columb and a cavity in an adjoining rock is called his bed. There is a well, dedicated to St. Columb, at which a patron is held with twelve ancient stone crosses, paced a quarter of a mile apart, as preparatory stations to visiting the well. There is a remarkable echo in the mountains.