Waterford County Museum, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford, Ireland. Charity Reg: 17397
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Marble and Stone Memorials - Galwey Memorial, Abbeyside

At Abbeyside church on the side facing out to sea there is an imposing memorial in the Gothic style which commemorates a member of the Galwey family.  The memorial is inscribed:

This monument has been erected to the memory of the late

John Mathew Galwey Esq. of Duckspool

who died on the 25th day of March 1842

by his affectionate son Edward Galwey.

The Galwey family were merchants in Dungarvan since the 18th century and a lane off Main Street is called ‘Galwey’s Lane’ on a street name plaque dated 1740. The Galweys leased Duckspool House from the Boate family who were the original builders in the early 18th century.  John Matthew was a J.P. and M.P for Co Waterford 1832-34.  In 1813 he married Ann Barron of Castletown.  The Gentleman’s Magazine for May 1842 noted that he died on 25 March at Duckspool aged 53 and that his death was sudden caused by a ‘ruptured blood vessel in the heart’.  His son Edward who erected the monument lost all his money and died in the workhouse in 1891.  John Matthew was remembered as a generous man and improving landlord.

Duckspool House

The monument is important as it is a rare, signed work by the stone mason: ’McGrath, Dungarvan’.  This refers to Patrick McGrath (1812-1895) who worked on the stonework of Strancally Castle in the 1829.  He moved to Dungarvan in 1837 and had a mason’s yard at South Terrace. In 1847 he and his family emigrated to New Brunswick settling in Quincy. His daughter Mary Elizabeth (born in Dungarvan) married a Dr John A. Blake, and she became a well-known poet and author based in Boston.

Patrick McGrath, Stonemason

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