Tag Archives: Donaghmore

Donaghmore Workhouse Laois

Donaghmore Workhouse, Laois

today, a Museum.

On the day that we kidnapped my American friends we took them to the final venue, Donaghmore Workhouse which is now a Museum.  Most of the Workhouse is now a Museum containing material collected over the years.

I have one photograph of Dorene Allen holding the lid of a pan.  That particular pan had been donated to the Workhouse/Museum by a lady after whom Dorene had been named.  The spelling of her first name is a bit different, but Dorene was named after Doreen Squires who had donated the pan.

When families entered the Workhouse they were broken up.  Very young children could stay with their mothers but when they were a few years old they were separated out to the children’s quarters.  What must it have been like to be in a building 2 minutes away from the one your Mammy was in and not be able to see her?  Donaghmore Workhouse is a very sad place as are all workhouses.

There is little to say about any of these photographs.  Once again, in some instances the light was not good for taking a photo.

The colours of equipment that you see in these photos are exactly as they were painted when they were created.

A lot of this equipment was upstairs in what was the Girls dormitory.  There are wooden panels lying down the centre of the floor and it was in this area that the straw for the girls to sleep on lay.




Breakfast was timed for 9am which consisted of a half pint of milk and 8oz of bread per inmate.  Bread was supplied by H. Odlum in 4lb loaves – 6.5d for white and 7d for brown.

d. = 1 penny
s.= Shilling.  12 d = 1 shilling

The Inmates frequently complained about the poor quality of the milk, that it was often blue, thick and sour.

Milk was supplied at 7d per gallon.

Lunch consisted of 8oz of bread and soup. Potatoes were used for thickening this soup, when available. At nearly 7 shillings a barrel i.e. 20 stone, they were expensive.  Flour was also used as a potato substitute at a rate of 12 oz per gallon.

Meat was sometimes used – there were 5 different types.  Officers meat, Paupers meat, Coarse meat, Hospital meat, and Meat for Soup.

Coarse beef – 3d per pound
Sheeps head – 7d each
Cows head – 1 shilling and 9d each
Hocks of beef – 3d per pound.

On special days such as Christmas and Easter Sunday Paupers were given a tea breakfast and a meat dinner.

For the evening meal, stirabout was served. Sometimes it was made of Indian meal and rice, but usually made of Indian meal and oat meal.  It was made of 4lb of meal and 2lb of rice in ten gallon of water.


Amongst the poorer people clothing amounted to little more than rags. Any decent clothes were given to the men at the fair.  Women scarcely ever wore shoes.

Suits were made for 5 shillings and 6d each and a local Tailor gave instructions for boys on how to repair clothes.

A Shoe maker was paid 7 shillings and 6d for making mens shoes, 5 shillings for women and 3 shillings 6d for children.

Oaten straw was used for puffing mattresses at 3 shillings and 6d per cuit.


A school was in operation in Donaghmore from 1853.  A Mr. Tuck was the first Teacher appointed.  A Miss Bergin was appointed School Mistress in 1862 on a salary of £7 and 7 shillings per year.  She was highly regarded by the Inspectors of the time. She was given 4lbs of chalk and snuffer tray and was regarded as being highly efficient.


Heritage tour in Laois. Kidnapped!

Kidnap Day!!

Heritage Tour in Laois

I’m calling this a Heritage Tour in Laois because for the most part, it was a Heritage tour and we did things that our friends might not have managed to do by themselves.  They definitely would not have had the company of people who know the area.

My friend Sue McDonald Welles along with her friend Mary Connelly Pereira and Mary’s brother Philip were over here in Ireland on holiday, they were going to spend 3 days in Laois because Sue’s family are from Raheen.  This was the second time in the last few years that Sue and Mary have been over and I spent a few days with them the last time as well.

My friend Dorene Allen is this incredible cook so I asked Dorene if she would cook dinner for my friends and we’d have it in her house (which was my childhood family home).  Dorene agreed to this, then it dawned on me “Jane, these are Americans and Americans go around Ireland wondering where they will get ‘Irish’ food.  Why don’t you cook an Irish stew for them”  I asked Sue if they’d like Irish stew or Bacon & cabbage, the reply came back that they would like the stew.  When I told my brother this he informed me that Dorene and her children do not like Irish stew so, I found another recipe which had lamb cooked in a red wine and tomato sauce.

In the meantime, Dorene and I are talking about my American friends and their few days here and Dorene says “Why don’t we kidnap them on Wednesday and show them all kinds of stuff they’d never get to see on their own? – A Heritage Tour” To which I replied, great idea and asked Sue to keep Wed free because we were going to kidnap them.

The Heritage Tour kidnapping day went like this:

1. We collected the three – Sues, Mary and Phil

2. We took them to the kennels for the hunt ‘hounds’ – I was calling them dogs!!

3. We went to Morrissey’s Pub in Abbeyleix for a cup of coffee

4. After that off to see the hunt people gathering and taking off from Abbeyleix Manor Hotel

5. Followed by Alissa Blundells shop ‘Horse n Riders’ in Abbeyleix

6. Then to Bramleys or the Gallic Kitchen in Abbeyleix (Titanic Carpets had been produced

7. Church of Ireland, Abbeyleix

8. Lord’s Walk beside Church of Ireland

9. Down to Durrow and Bowe’s Foodhall for lunch

10 Up to the Castle Arms Hotel Durrow – Castle

11. Off to Donaghmore Workhouse which is now a Museum

12 back to Sandymount house their Bed and breakfast for an hour break

13 Back to my family home in Rathdowney for dinner & a surprise.


I have no photos for the Gallic kitchen visit – at that point I was wrecked and just stayed in

Philip Sheppard was coming to dinner as well so I had asked him if he wanted to come earlyfor the surprise – he said yes.

We all got back to Rathdowney at 6.30p.m. where Dorene had everyone roll up their sleeves and she taught Sue, Mary, Phil, Philip & myself how to make brown bread.

Brown bread was supposed to go with dinner

Dinner consisted of Irish stew and a casserole of lamb cooked in red wine and tomatoes and
then a spinage lasagne which I had prepared for our vegetarian. Dorene did starter and dessert – she is an incredible cook.   As it turned out the American trio had a bit of both meat dishes.  The vegetarian stuck with the lasagne

They had an incredible day – I had an incredible day, Dorene and my brother Matthew had an incredible day

Almost forgot – over the course of the evening, Dorene and the children sang them songs

I am not going to load all the photos taken that day  to this page.  Most of the Hounds & Hunt went to a page created just with hounds and hunt.  Some of the photos taken there are not on that page so I include them here.  Most of the Donaghmore Workhouse photos will go to a Donaghmore Workhouse page.

Those pages will be linked to from this page.

From here – for the rest of this page, it is just going to be photos!

I hope you enjoy them as much as we enjoyed our day overall.  My American friends have thanked us for a most incredible day and evening.  Philip has said similar as regards his evening out with us all.

Lead photo at top of page preparing to leave and go on Heritage tour not having a clue where they were going!!

The Hounds

Hunt gathering & leaving

If you are interested in seeing the rest of the Hounds & First Hunt Laois 2016 photos taken that day then please click the link.

Before the actual Hunt took off from the hotel we went to Mossirrey’s pub in Abbeyleix, a very famous place in it’s own right.  Years ago, and I am talking very many years ago this pub was only one story high.  There are photographs of it as a one story building in Heritage House Abbeyleix, although I don’t know if those photographs are available for public viewing or not.

Morrissey’s Pub, Abbeyleix

Out the door to the Hunt and then back onto Main street to

Horse N Riders

Church of Ireland, Abbeyleix & The Lord’s Walk (beside it)

Bowe’s Food Hall, Durrow 

and yes, I only have one photo from that day of the floor in the new bathroom of their extension.  A 2 cent floor!



Castle Arms Hotel, Durrow 

You can find photographs of the Castle everywhere but not of the trees.  Isn’t the colour beautiful?

The final venue of the day, the saddest place we were at.  I’ m only giving you a few photos here as the Workhouse (Museum) is going to get itself a full web page

 Donaghmore Workhouse

Everyone was exhausted at this time, it was about 5pm when we left the Workhouse.  I

dropped my American friends back to Sandymount House in Abbeyleix for an hours rest and
then got them back to our house in Rathdowney where we met Philip at the gate waiting to
go in (3 dogs in garden).  We got into the kitchen and Dorene had everyone roll up their
sleeves because she had a big bowl waiting – she taught us how to make brown bread to go

with our dinner!

Evening :)

While the bread was baking we had music

Finally the Dinner table

Our guests left at 11.30 that night and I can only say that a wonderful day was had by all.

At the end of it all, I have to say that the Americans and everyone except our vegetarian all had portions of both the Irish stew and the wine stew AND the children ate every single bit!  It was great.

Civil Registration Books, Abbeyleix and Donaghmore, 1864-84 (Hyland)

The following table gives you a list of details re children of the surname Hyland who were registered in the Civil Registration Districts of Abbeyleix & Donaghmore, Co. Laois (Queen’s Co.) during the years 1864-84.

The photocopies of all these records were purchased from the Irish Civil Registration Office.  In some cases it was difficult to read words, those words/letters are indicated by question marks.

Spellings are given as I read them on the records whether or not these place names fit in with current place names is another matter.

The columns are sorted by year, not by name of father.

ChildSurnameFatherFromMotherSurname MotherOcc. FatherDateYear
BridgetHylandMichaelHeywoodElizaKennyFarmerJanuary 20th1864
CatherineHylandJohnBallinacloughMargaretKealyChemical LabourerApril 9th1864
MargaretHylandJamesToortawnMargaretLarkinLabourerAug 5th1864
MaryHylandWilliam?CashanCatherineHylandLabourerJanuary 9th 1864
ThomasHylandJohnAbbeyleixMaryKeenanLabourerAug 20th1864
MaryHylandJohnCastletownHepyDunneLabourerOctober 28th1865
MichaelHylandDenisRingCatherineMooneyLabourerMarch 6th 1865
WilliamHylandUnknownDonaghmore Poor HouseCatherineHylandPauperAug 15th 1865
BridgetHylandJohnCastletownEstherDunneLabourerJuly 28th1866
JamesHylandJamesToortawnMargaretLarkinFarmerJuly 8th1866
MaryHylandJohnMoanfadMaryBerginLabourerAug ?21st1869
MathewHylandJamesToortawnMargaretLarkinFarmerJune 1st1869
SarahHylandMichaelClogmoor, BallinakillElizabethKennyHerdApril ?10th1869
JudithHylandJohnCastlefinnHesterDunneLabourerMarch 9th 1871
LizzyHylandJohnMoanfadMaryBerginLabourerNov 29th1871
NicholasHylandJohnBordwellMaryGavinFarmerMay ?21st1871
WilliamHylandDenis?GaltCatherine?MoonyLabourerJune 21st.1871
WilliamHylandDenisColtCatherineMoonyLabourerJune 21st.1871
PattHylandPattToortawnElizaFitzpatrickFarmerJuly 23rd1872
JosephHylandPattToortawnElizaFitzpatrickFarmerSept 21st1873
Mary AnnHylandJamesToortawnMary AnnBerginBlacksmithNov. 8th1873
PattHylandPattAbbeyleixMargaretBonhamLabourerMay 28th1873
JohnHylandJohnCastletownHephe(e)DunneLabourerJuly ?2nd1874
Margaret MaryHylandJohnBordwellMary?FarillFarmerOct 12th1874
MartinHylandMichaelHeywoodElizabethKennyFarmerApril 19th1874
MaryHylandWilliamBallacollaEllenMartinFarmerMarch 19th1874
JudyHylandPattToortawnElizaFitzpatrickFarmerMay 9th1875
NicholasHylandWilliamPark, BallacolaEllenMartinFarmerAug 3rd1875
PatrickHylandJamesMonadrahidMary A.BerginBlacksmithApril 25th1875
SarahHylandPatrickToortaunElizaFitzpatrickLabourerSept 12th1876
DanielHylandPat.MonadrehidElizaFitzpatrickLabourerDec 13th1877
Joseph JohnHylandJamesMonadrahidMaryBerginMechanicJune 19th1877
MargaretHylandJohnMoanfadMaryBerginLabourerMarch 27th1877
SarahHylandWilliamPark, BallacolaEllenMartinFarmerJune 11th1877
JudyHylandJamesSkirkeElizthLambFarmerDec 4th1878
PatrickHylandWilliamBallacollaEllenMartinFarmerSept 28th1878
KateHylandPatrickToortawnElizaFitzpatrickFarmerAug 10th1879
KyranHylandJames?MondaludusMary AnneBergin or DugganFarmerApril 24th1879
WilliamHylandJohnMounvattMaryBerginLabourerJuly 27th1879
ElizaHylandPatrickToortawnElizaFitzpatrickFarmerAug 29th1880
JohnHylandWilliamParkEllenMartinFarmerOct0ber 24th1880
KateHylandMichaelCahirjohannaPhelanFarmerMarch 5th 1880
EllenHylandWilliamParkEllenMartinFarmerMarch 12th1882
MichaelHylandPatrickTootaunElizaFitzpatrickFarmerAug 28th 1884

Donaghmore Church of Ireland, Co. Laois (Queen’s Co.)

Church of Ireland,
Co. Laois (Queen’s Co.)

These photographs were taken April 2014.


Donaghmore Roman Catholic Church Photographs, Ballyragget, Co. Kilkenny

Photographs of Donaghmore’s Roman Catholic Church in Ballyragget, Co. Kilkenny, Ireland. These photographs were taken December 2007.

Donaghmore, Ballyraggett, Gravestone photographs

I was over in Donaghmore again in the last few weeks with my friend Janet who was over from Baltimore and we were actually looking for one gravestone that I had photographed in earlier years.  We did not find it.  I’m posting these photographs to show you the difference in the graveyard on that day.  Plus, it had been pelting rain and I did not go traipsing through all the long grass as I received a phone call.  Janet was *very* wet when we got back in the car.  I’m leaving the photo of her taking a photo in this lot to let you get some idea of how long the grass was. The middle photo does show the front entrance to the graveyard and the grass had been cut there.

Donaghmore District Marriage Records, Co. Laois

This page features civil Marriage Records for the district of Donaghmore in Co. Laois and includes full names (where possible), the year of marriage, and the quarter in which the marriage occurred. A searchable index of all available marriage records is available here.

Name Year Quarter
Bridget Davey 1864
Bridget Kennedy 1864
Bridget Maher 1864
Catherine Kenny 1871
Catherine Rafter 1882 4th
Daniel Bowe 1873
Daniel Rafter 1881 1st
Eliza Macavoy 1880 4th
Elizabeth Cunningham 1865
George Pierce 1868
Honora Gleeson 1865
James Cavenagh 1876
James Hoctor 1864
John Daly 1869
John Hyland 1868
John Hyland 1868
Judeth Delaney 1873
Kate Hoen 1882 2nd
Margaret Bowe 1870
Margaret Rafter 1884 1st
Martin Cleary 1876
Mary Davy 1864
Mary Edith Murray 1884 4th
Patrick Costigan 1864
Patrick Kennedy 1873
Sarah Kingwood 1879 1st
Thomas Henry Pick 1877
William Rafter 1881 1st
Daniel Bowe 1873
Margaret Bowe 1870
James Cavenagh 1876
Martin Cleary 1876
Patrick Costigan 1864
Elizabeth Cunningham 1865
John Daly 1869
Bridget Davey 1864
Mary Davy 1864
Judeth Delaney 1873
Honora Gleeson 1865
James Hoctor 1864
Kate Hoen 1882 2nd
John Hyland 1868
John Hyland 1868
Bridget Kennedy 1864
Patrick Kennedy 1873
Catherine Kenny 1871
Sarah Kingwood 1879 1st
Eliza Macavoy 1880 4th
Bridget Maher 1864
Mary Edith Murray 1884 4th
Thomas Henry Pick 1877
George Pierce 1868
Catherine Rafter 1882 4th
Daniel Rafter 1881 1st
Margaret Rafter 1884 1st
William Rafter 1881 1st

Civil Registration Records