Lewis’ Topographical Dictionary, Co. Mayo

Lewis’ Topographical Dictionary comprises of several counties, cities, boroughs, parish and villages – with historical and statistical descriptions – of Ireland. Here are From-Ireland.net’s records for Co. Mayo.

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    BREAFY or BREAGHWEE, a parish in the barony of CARRA, county of MAYO, and province of CONNAUGHT, 2 miles (S.E.) from Castlebar; containing 2315 inhabitants.

    This place is situated on the road from Castlebar to Clare, and is bounded by a very considerable river, called the Minola, which by its frequent inundations does more injury to the surrounding districts that any other in the county of province. From its contiguity to Castlebar it was the scene of much skirmishing, foraging and plundering, while the French troops under Gen. Humbert had possession of that town in 1798. The parish comprises 5000 statute acres as applotted under the tithe act: the land in cultivation is partly under tillage and partly in pasture, in nearly equal proportions: there is a very considerable tract of bog, which might be reclaimed by draining. On the estate of Major Blake of Fisher Hill, is a very fine quarry of stone, which is fit for buildings of the first order. Races are held generally in August, on a course within the parish.

    The principal gentlemen's seats are Breafy Lodge, the residence of Major Browne, who has made extensive improvements and plantations in this demesne; Windsor House of Col. McAlpine; Fisher Hill of Major Blake; Hawthorn Lodge of C. O'Malley, Esq.; and Rocklands of J.C. Larminie, Esq.

    It is a rectory and vicarage in the diocese of Tuam, and is part of the union of Castlebar: the tithes amount to £57 15s. 11d.

    In the R.C. divisions, this is one of the three parishes that constitute the union or district of Aglish, or Castlebar; it contains a chapel, but no service is at present performed in it.

    A school at Lightfoot is supported by Mrs. O'Malley and J. Larminie, Esq; and there are two others, in which are about 200 boys and 100 girls.

    There are some remains of a very ancient monastery.