Waterford County Museum, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford, Ireland. Charity Reg: 17397
Tel: +353 (0)58 45960 Email: info@waterfordmuseum.ie
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Photo of the Week

Can you identify anyone in this photo of the Abbeyside Parish outing to Gougane Barra in 1930s?  If so, let us know

Wednesday 18th Sept 2019 - Lecture by Julian Walton in Dungarvan Sailing Club

Lecture by Julian Walton in Dungarvan Sailing Club

Louisa, Marchioness of Waterford (1818 -1891):
a bicentenary assessment and fresh discoveries

Julian Walton is back with what will prove to be a most interesting talk. 

Waterford County Museum Dungarvan is always delighted when Julian agrees to come and deliver a talk for us.  Readers and followers of the ‘Historical Giant’ will be drawn to the words in his lecture entitled ‘Fresh Discoveries’.  The subject matter of his talk will be, Louisa Anne Stuart, who was the younger daughter of Lord Stuart de Rothesay, a career diplomat and Lady Elizabeth Yorke.  Beautiful, artistic and deeply religious, who to the consternation of her family, married Henry, 3rd Marquess of Waterford, who had hitherto been renowned for his reckless and spendthrift behaviour in 1842.  Her reign of seventeen years at Curraghmore was marked by humanitarian endeavours which did much to alleviate the plight of the poor, especially during the Great Famine. 
            After the death of her husband in a freak hunting accident, Louisa retired to Ford Castle in Northumberland, where she survived her husband by thirty-two years.  In Ford she rebuilt the castle and village, decorating the walls of the school with biblical stories for which the models were the local children.  She was a gifted and prolific artist and was the friend of Ruskin, Rossetti, and other leaders of the art world.

            Louisa has been the subject of four biographies and several articles.  This lecture offers fresh insights into her character, based on her correspondence and art work at Curraghmore, much of which was not known to previous biographers.

             Now then, does that whet your appetite for more? Julian’s lecture takes place at the Sailing Club venue on the Quay, Dungarvan this Wednesday 18th at 8.pm. There will be an entrance fee of €5, and as always, all are very welcome.

Friday 20th September 2019 - Culture Night at Waterford County Museum

'Reading the Past - County Waterford People & Places'

Friday 20th September 7 - 8.30 p.m.

Hear a selection of guest speakers read from published and unpublished works focusing on Co Waterford from the 17th to the 20th century.

During the evening we will hear about Mr Boulez le Gouz’s impressions of Dungarvan and Waterford people in 1644,  Linen Cooke, the 18th century vegetarian from Cappoquin, Welshman Lewis Dillwyn’s visit to the Cunnigar in 1809, and many more.

Come along and have a chat and refreshments and celebrate Culture Night with us in the Museum.

Admission Free

Sunday 6th October 2019 - Scandal in the Big House! - Dromana House, Cappoquin

Venue: Dromana House, Cappoquin, CountyWaterford

Date:    Sunday 6th October 2019

Time:  10 am for 11 am start: Coffee

Admission:  €75 pp or €130 for 2 persons to include morning coffee, lunch & afternoon tea.

Julian Walton (Dunhill Education Centre): 'The Scandalous Lives of the Carpenters, Earls of Tyrconnell'.

Prof. Claire Connolly (UCC): 'Hot and Cold Scandal in Maria Edgeworth's Novels'.


Dr. Eibhear Walsh (UCC): 'Scandal in Merrion Square: The Other Wilde Trial'.

Dr. Peter Murray: 'Mad, Bad and Dangerous to Know - Lord Byron, Lady Caroline Lamb and Lismore Castle'. 


Enquiries & Booking Email: info@dromanahouse.com Tel: 086 8186305
€75 pp or €130 for 2 persons to include morning coffee, lunch & afternoon tea

Programme subject to change without notice.

Photo of the Week

Can you identify anyone in this photo taken in Rome in 1950s at the church of St. Maria Maggiore?  If so please let us know.

Stories from Old Newspapers

‘The Irregular’s taste for the finer things’

Examples of two Dungarvan compensation court claims in 1923

Waterford News 11 November 1923

Thomas H Murphy of the Park Hotel, Main Street, Dungarvan, claimed £56.0.3 for teas, drinks, stouts, etc. taken by the Irregulars.  Murphy stated that the I.R.A. supplied meat to him which he had to cook for them.  They took the drink by force.  They also took a suit of clothes and a lady’s trench coat.  The state solicitor Mr. Ryan was intrigued and remarked: ‘What do the ladies want trench coats for?  We have enough going into trench coats without the ladies going into them’.  Murphy also said that the Irregulars took a quantity of underclothing and left their own clothing behind.  Mr. Ryan cross-examined Murphy who admitted he did ‘fairly well with the British military owing to his place being near the barracks.  The I.R.A. paid for some drinks they got, but they commandeered all the drinks they claimed for.  On the first night three of the Irregulars came in with a bomb and demanded three large stouts.  He sent to the barracks when the bomb was produced and the pin taken out, and the Irregular was removed.  Murphy found the bomb on the premises next morning and some ammunition’.  The judge awarded £20 in compensation.

R.A. Merry & Co claimed £1.13.3 for puddings, sausages and £84.16 for groceries, liquors, including six ‘quibs’ of champagne.  Mr. Ryan, solicitor, commented: ‘There must have been some fellows ‘craw-sick’ which produced much laughter in the court.  Merry’s felt they had to hand over the goods as the men had revolvers. The judge awarded £60.

1st October 2019 - Event in SGC Cinema

Members can avail of reduced rates to  this event courtesy of Mr. Eugene Tobin, Manager SGC Cinema, Dungarvan.  It is advisable to book your tickets in advance for these event. 

Placido Domingo 50th Anniversary Gala Evening on Tuesday 1st October also at 7.30.

17th September 2019 - Event in SGC Cinema

Throughout the year we will have specials for our Museum members in conjunction with SGC Cinema.  Members can avail of reduced rates to events courtesy of Mr. Eugene Tobin, Manager SGC Cinema, Dungarvan.  

It is advisable to book your tickets in advance for these events.

Members can call to the museum to pick up their concession tickets.

The first event is Rigoletto on the Lake on Tuesday 17th September at 7.30 p.m.

Photo of the Week

Can you identify anyone in this group photo in Dungarvan ?  If so please let us know.

John Creedon’s Atlas of Ireland

Well done to Chrissy Knight O’Connor for her appearance on John Creedon’s latest series on RTE. Chrissy explained about the Gallowshill Community Archaeology project and the associated research being undertaken into the Viking presence in Dungarvan.

Book Launch

Aine Ui Fhoghlu launched her latest book in Ring recently titled:  ‘Scealta agus Seanchas’.      The launch venue was packed to capacity. The book was launched by Padraig O Machain in Halla Pobail na Rinne. He remarked what a valuable exercise Aine had undertaken in recording the memories of local people and that he was glad to note that the book was printed in Ireland. The museum is delighted to be associated with the publication as we supplied a number of the illustrations for it from our extensive image archive. Thanks to Barry Moore museum image archivist for facilitating this. The hardback of 320 pages is a work of art and beautifully designed and is bilingual.

Mai Fox

The museum was saddened to learn of the death of Mai Fox who was a long-time member of the Museum Society and we send our sympathies to her family and friends.

Margaret Power, widow, of Ballinagoul, Ringville, a poor industrious woman

The following report a Board of Guardian’s meeting in Dungarvan shows the precarious existence of poor people in 19th century Ireland. In this case a widow, Margaret Power, whose house was under threat of demolition.

Waterford News 14 December 1866
Margaret Power, widow, of Ballinagoul, Ringville, a poor industrious woman, who, with one son, aged twelve years, is in the habit of making nets in that locality for fishermen, to enable them to maintain the younger members of the family , was granted a continuation of two shillings a week for a month.
The chairman remarked that if the applicant left her little cabin, that moment it would be levelled to the ground; he might say she had the fee-simple of it, and if she came into the workhouse she would become a permanent burthen on the rate payers.

"The Vikings are Coming" - Making a model Viking Longboat

Continuing to celebrate National Heritage week and in conjunction with Gallows Hill Community Archaeology Project, Waterford County Museum held an enjoyable workshop for children and their parents on Wednesday 21st August.  

This event organised by Tony Hayes involved the children making their own model of a Viking Longboat and it proved very successful.  Parents, staff and the children all got involved in the cutting, pasting and colouring.  When the boats were finished the children enjoyed posing for photographs with the reproduction Viking swords and helmets.

The museum feels it is important to have events such as this to introduce children to history and their local museum.  Many of our exhibits are suitable for children and we welcomed families from all over the world throughout the summer months. 

Alfie and Samuel Carroll

Portrait Drawing Day in Waterford County Museum

To mark the start of Heritage Week Waterford County Museum held a Portrait Drawing Workshop on Saturday17th August.  Museum staff member Tony Hayes organised the event.  Tony gave a PowerPoint presentation on five women artists and spoke about their drawings.  Curator William Fraher gave a guided tour of the portraits on display in the museum.

We would like to thank David for doing one of the modelling sessions and all those who participated in the workshop.  This is the second successful drawing event at the museum and we hope to have more of them in the future.

Keep an eye on Facebook, Twitter, our website and local newspapers for information on these events.

Photo of the Week

Can you identify anyone in this group photo in Dungarvan CBS in 1979?  If so please let us know.

John Mansfield (1906 - 1965)

John Mansfield was born at Ballinroad, Old Parish on 6th February 1906, the son of James Mansfield and Bridget Mansfield (Née Power).  He was educated at Ballymacart National School and later at C.B.S. Dungarvan.  He emigrated to America in 1924.

John volunteered to join the U.S. Army in February 1942 just over two months after the attack on Pearl Harbour on December 7, 1941.  Although he was 36 years old at the time, he believed that he would be drafted shortly and by volunteering he was allowed to choose the branch of the army he wanted.  He chose the Armored Corps and after basic training, he was assigned to the newly activated 4th Armored Division formed at Fort Knox, Kentucky in June 1942. The 4th Armored Division was assigned to Patton's 3rd Army and he served the entire war with this division.  The division was known as "Paton's Pride and Joy", having had the most days in combat of any unit of the 3rd Army.
John was very proud of the 4th Armored Division which engaged in 17 major battles from Normandy to Czechoslovakia.  It was the stellar Armored Division of the 3rd Army, and perhaps of all American divisions that served in the European campaign.  John was twice wounded and many times decorated.  He received the following awards:

BRONZE HEART for Valour in the Battle of the Bulge (Bastonge, Belgium)

PURPLE HEART WITH CLUSTER which means he received this Medal twice for being wounded at Normandy and then near Metz in France.

EUROPEAN-AFRICAN MIDDLE EASTERN CAMPAIGN Ribbon with seven battle stars which means he fought in seven major engagements in France, Belgium and Germany.

DISTINGUISHED UNIT CITATION received by all members of the 51st Armoured Infantry Battalion who served during the breakout of the Normandy Beachhead.




French and Belgian Decorations.

He was honourably discharged from the Military Service of the United States of America on 19th October 1945 when he returned to New York where he died on 1st July 1965.

John Mansfield's military dog tags and a selection of his medals, including his Purple Heart, are on display in Waterford County Museum.

Stories from Old Newspapers

Waterford Standard 8 September 1899

H.R.H. The Duchess and the Convent of Mercy, Stradbally

The sisters in charge of the weaving industries attached to the Convent of Mercy, Stradbally have just received an order from H.R.H. the Duchess of York for a number of their hand-made linen towels to be sent to York House.

This industry, which was founded some time ago to relieve the distress in the surrounding districts has developed, under the care of the sisters, into one of considerable importance in the South of Ireland.  Not only are all sorts of household linens, pocket handkerchiefs, etc., manufactured…but the convent has gained for itself quite a reputation for its hand-woven coloured linens, which are made in various art shades and used for decorative purposes as well as for dresses.  The Countess of Mayo has always taken an active interest in the progress of the Stradbally industry, and not long since the Countess of Cadogan ordered one of the rooms at the Vice regal Lodge to be hung with Stradbally Linen.  Another order which the sisters have on hand is for two hundred yards of white serge for the Cistercian monks at Mount Melleray.

Photo of the week

Can you identify anyone in this photo of the Dungarvam C.B.S choir from 1966?
If so, please let us know. 

Friday 23rd August 2019 Gallows Hill Children's Viking Big Dig

      Heritage Week Children’s Viking Dig 

Children participating in the ISA Big Dig, Irish School of Archaeology

                                   Friday 23rd August 2019

To celebrate Heritage Week 2019,  we have invited School of Irish Archaeology to join us providing hands-on learning for children. The school will set up their unique ‘Viking House’ and excavation site that allows children and young adults to explore the Viking world through a simulated archaeology dig. Children and young adults (4yrs-13yrs) will have the chance to experience what it is like to be an archaeologist by learning how to excavate the remains of a Viking house.

As they dig through the site, participants will unearth Viking treasures and artefacts dating back 1,000 years. They will learn about the lives of our Viking ancestors as history is brought to life by qualified archaeologists. Our educational workshops offer a unique experience that will leave our future generations fascinated by our ancient ancestors and eager to learn more.

Places are limited and must be booked at Waterford County Museum on 058 45960 or by email info@waterfordmuseum.ie Gallows Hill community dig takes place 23rd August to 3rd September, all are welcome to visit and learn more about the fascinating discoveries.

Court Cairn at Ballinamona Lower, Old Parish

This court cairn is situated in the townland of Ballinamona Lower, Parish of Ardmore.  The site is marked 'dolmen' on the 6 inch O.S. map, and is known locally as 'Cailleach Bhearra's House'.  It is located about one mile north of Mine Head Lighthouse and about 100 yards from the cliff edge.

In May 1938 an excavation was carried out on the site as part of the relief of unemployment programme under the direction of T.G.E. Powell.  Laurence Mongey a chemist and antiquarian and amateur photographer from Dungarvan helped on the dig.

The Cairn & Forecourt : The cairn (mound of stones covering the tomb) was not retained by kerb stones and was about 32 feet in length with about 6 feet on either side of the chamber.  On the south side of the forecourt a small hearth was found.  The forecourt consisted of four large free standing uprights, two in the north and two on the south side.

Plan And Elevation of a Portal Tomb
The Chamber : This is 10 feet 6 inches long and 5 feet 3 inches wide.  It is built with five orthostats, two on the north, two on the south and one on the east side.  The entrance opening at the west end is 18 inches wide.  The chamber is divided into two compartments.  Originally the chambers would have been covered by two or three slabs, these have since disappeared. The excavation found that compartment A had been disturbed, as a pit had been dug into the floor probably by treasure hunters.  Some flint flakes were found in this area.  Some artefacts were found in compartment B including a small amount of cremated bone.  However the floor here had been disturbed at some period.

The Finds : Eleven pottery shards were found in compartment B.  This ware was about 5 millimetres thick.  The shards had a red colour with patches of grey.  Some larger shards were found and when these were joined they formed about one quarter of the rim of a vessel about 13 cm in diameter across the mouth.  The shards were 11 mm thick and composed of grey and white stone grits and mica.  The colour of the pot shards were dark brown with grey and white specks.

'The reconstruction suggests a round base for the vessel which, if this were so, was then of a simple bowl type with heavy applied ledge rim.  Decoration is found on the rim ledge on the body of the pot where it survives.  On the rim are a series of five broad, shallow, horizontal grooves.  Above these, on the edge of the lip are a row of very small vertical impressions.  The outer angle of the applied ledge forms the centre line of a herring bone pattern, made by small oblique stroke like impressions closely set on either side.  The herring bone pattern deteriorates in some places to a few strokes on the upper side only, and in another it is supplanted by three rough stokes executed in the stab and drag technique.  Below the best row of herring bone is a zone broad horizontal grooves...'

Flints : Numerous natural flint flakes were found in the chambers and the cairn. Only three showed signs of human working.

Stone Disc : In the corner of compartment B. a small stone disc was found.  It was made of a fine grained piece of old Red Sandstone with a diameter of 5 cm and 8 mm thick in the centre.

by William Fraher

17th - 25th August 2019 National Heritage Week

Waterford County Museum is gearing up for National Heritage Week. We have received our box of goodies in preparation for our programme of activities during the week.

Dungarvan Cycle Club Commemorate First Cycle Race

The first cycle race for a challenge cup was run in Dungarvan in September 1869.  It was organised by the Dungarvan Ramblers Cycle Club and the race was won by Richard Edward Brenan, the Postmaster in Dungarvan.  He was presented with a cup which is now on display in Waterford County Museum.
The Dungarvan Cycling Club recreated the race last Friday night at Shandon.  The museum was delighted to bring the original cup to be presented to the winner of the race.  Thanks to museum staff member Paulus who brought the precious cup to the Shandon race.

The original cup is now safely back in its display case as part of the museum exhibition on the Brenan family.  This exhibition is a permanent display so why not visit the museum to learn more about cycling in Dungarvan and the printing and photography work of the Brenan family.

17th August 2019 - Portrait Drawing at Waterford County Museum


SATURDAY  17th AUGUST 2019     10 am – 4.30 pm

Following our successful National Drawing Day event and the resulting positive feedback, the Museum is pleased to present a Portrait Drawing day. This is an excellent opportunity to improve your drawing skills for all abilities.

This will be a chance to participate in a portrait drawing event and enjoy a talk by curator William Fraher who will discuss portraits from the Museum collection. There will also be a presentation of differing approaches to portrait drawing throughout history.

Places must be booked in advance   18yrs +

CONTACT info@waterfordmuseum.ie  Phone +353(0)58 4596
It is suggested participants bring a packed lunch.

Timetable of events

10.00   Start:    Drawing
11.00   BREAK: Talk by Curator /Museum Collection
11 .45  Drawing
12.30. - 1.15 LUNCH
1.15    Drawing
3.30    BREAK:  Talk, different approaches to portrait drawing
4.30    Finish 

21st August 2019 - Children's Event for National Heritage Week



Celebrating National Heritage Week and in conjunction with Gallows Hill Community Archaeology Project Waterford County Museum are inviting Children and Parents to participate in a free event "Making a model VIKING LONGBOAT ".
This event will take place on WEDNESDAY 21st AUGUST
11am – 1pm.       Age 10+ years

All children must be accompanied by an adult
Materials will be provided.

Spaces on this event are limited and participants are required to book in advance.
Contact us at   info@waterfordmuseum.ie  
Or phone +353 (0)58 45960

Photo of the Week

Can you identify anyone in this photo from 1960s in Ballinagoul, Ring?  If so, please let us know.

Donation to Waterford County Museum

A World War II gas mask was donated to the Museum by the Drummy family.  Pictured in the photo are Alanna and Claudia Drummy, daughters of Brendan and Claire Drummy, making the presentation to William Fraher, curator of Waterford County Museum, Dungarvan.

Visit from Rehab Care Waterford

Some of the group from Rehab Care Waterford with William Fraher, curator

On Wednesday last we welcomed a group from Rehab Care Waterford who were on a day trip to Dungarvan.  They were given a guided tour of the museum by the curator William Fraher.

If groups/organisations would like to visit the museum you can contact us by phone at 058 45960 or email info@waterfordmuseum.ie to arrange a date.

Stories from Old Newspapers

Waterford News 30 April 1869

California at Kilminnion -or the Miser’s Treasure

‘It appears that four brothers and one sister, known by the name of ‘Villies’, the derivation of which I am at a loss to understand, lived in the same locality for a period of 60 or 70 years.  They generally cultivated con-acre land by planting potatoes, grazed a few sheep…Neither of these parties ever married, fearing the wives might be extravagant, and the offspring, if any, spend their hard earnings.  In time, three of the brothers with their sisters paid the debt of nature, and the means acquired dropped to the surviving party, who is the subject of this report.

Brother Michael followed the same avocation, but it never transpired from his lips that he was worth one penny in the world.  From his emaciated appearance and skeleton frame, many commiserated his deplorable and wretched condition; a respectable farmer, named Casey, gave him the use of a house rent free…He lived by himself, reared a pig, which dined with him at the same table.  On Saturdays he was sure to visit Dungarvan market to purchase the worst description of fish, skate and scalpeen…with a week's provision of yellow meal of the cheapest kind.  As to the washing of his face and hands, they only got an annual scouring, and as to the cleanliness of his linen, it never saw the washerwoman’s hands from the day it was purchased…His outside garments were so patched that it was actually impossible to discover the original texture.  As to the caubeen, it covered many heads previous to its coming into his possession’.

One day Michael fell asleep in the ditch and fell ill and died some days later.  Mr Casey his landlord looked after his internment.  He directed two of his unnamed servant boys to demolish the old house.  One of the boys found ‘some silver in an old saucepan’ and a five-pound note in the thatch.  The other boy did much better – he found a cart-wheel box which contained a ‘large number of old guineas’. He went into Dungarvan purchased a new suit and boots and then bought a ticket to America.

Gallows Hill Fundraising

Gallows Hill Community Group are currently fundraising for the final push at Gallows Hill, Dungarvan.  All donations, no matter how small, would be greatly appreciated.  Just drop by the Museum where the staff will be happy to greet you.

Photo of the week

Can you identify any of the people in this photo of a wedding party at Dungarvan train station in 1950s.  If so, please let us know.

Stories from Old Newspapers

Waterford Standard 6 December 1882

Dungarvan Town Commissioners

A report was read from Dr. Holland stating that a man named Ryan, residing in Lord George’s Lane, kept a pig and mule in his kitchen.  An order was made to have the man summoned should he fail to remove them on being served with the usual notice.  Mr. John Curran said that all the houses in this street were the property of the Marquis of Waterford, who had been frequently served with notice to put them in a proper state of repair, but he had failed to do so; for the sun, moon and stars could be seen through the roofs of some of them, and all of them lacked sanitary arrangements.  He would, therefore, ask the board to protect the lives of the people by compelling the Marquis to provide proper accommodation for those houses.  He (Mr. Curran) had no compassion or pity for a rich landlord who gets his rent to the last farthing, and who will do nothing for his tenants.

Stories from Old Newspapers

Flag of Ireland  26 March 1870

Arrest on Suspicion

Our Dungarvan Correspondent writes to us that on Friday evening Acting Constable John Linnehan and Sub-Constable Thomas Wilson, of the Dungarvan Police Station, arrested in the public streets of that town a young man named Michael Crotty, who resides about two miles from Dungarvan.  On his person were found two canisters of gunpowder, a part of a blasting fuse, a drill book, a book of seditious songs, and a small catholic prayer book.

He was brought before the magistrates at petty sessions on Saturday, and information sworn by the two policemen.  He was committed for trial at the next quarter sessions, in default of finding bail, himself in £40, and the sureties in £20 each.

Photo of the Week

Can you identify any of the members of Dungarvan Pipe Band in this photo from 1974?  If so, please let us know.

Photo of the Week

Can you identify the children and place in this photograph?  If so please let us know.

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