Waterford County Museum, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford, Ireland. Charity Reg: 17397
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Stories from Old Newspapers

 Waterford Standard 1 October 1938

Auction at The Island

‘The auction of household and outdoor effects which Mr John D Palmer, Auctioneer, is conducting next Tuesday is creating wide interest, and a most successful sale is assured at The Island [castle], Waterford. The goods will be on view on Monday next only, from 12 noon to 3p.m…Amongst the lots for sale are many choice antique pieces, including a beautiful Chippendale settee with silk tapestry; Chippendale chest of drawers on fretted brackets; William and Mary chest of drawers; miniature bow front sideboard; French hand-painted side table; mahogany tallboy, and many equally attractive pieces. The lots include Indian carpets in various sizes; Turkish and Persian rugs…excellent Chesterfield and two divan armchairs; plated ware, table linen, bed linen, ‘Beautyrest’ mattresses, bedroom suites, toys, Mecanno outfits, model boats, model railway with engines, hunting kit, nursery furniture, enamelled ‘Frigidaire’ and 12 h.p. Armstrong Siddley Saloon car. A charge of one shilling will be made for admission’.

In 1895 the owner Gerald Purcell Fitzgerald, J.P. & D.L. (1833-1879) commissioned William Henry Romaine Walker (1854-1940) assisted by Albert Murray (1849-1924) to rebuild a plain house containing the remains of a medieval towerhouse. It was one of the last great houses to be built in Ireland on this scale.


The Island Castle -Waterford - Circa 1915





Master McGrath painting Donated

 We were delighted to receive a donation of an historic oil painting featuring the famous greyhound Master Mcgrath and James Galwey of Colligan Lodge. The painting was donated by Prof. James Mason in memory of his late wife Gertrude Galwey Foley. The painting will be exhibited after restoration and framing.

Prof. James Mason- and  painting of Master Mcgrath. 

Stories from Old Newspapers

 Louis Claude Purser (1854-1932) Classical Scholar from Abbeyside

Louis was born in The Hermitage, Abbeyside on 28 September 1854 to Benjamin and Anne Purser. His sister Sarah was the distinguished artist. He was educated at Middleton College, Co Cork, and Portora Royal School in Enniskillen. A fellow pupil was Oscar Wilde whom he described as ‘more careful in his dress than any other boy’.

In 1871 he attended Trinity College Dublin where he was part of a group of classical scholars that included Robert Tyrrell and J.P. Mahaffy. Because of family financial difficulties Claude had to take on teaching work before finishing his degree. He graduated as senior moderator in classics in 1875, followed by an MA in 1879, and a D.Litt in 1891.In 1882 he worked on ‘The Correspondence of Cicero’ with Robert Tyrrell. ‘His meticulous attention to detail and wide-ranging historical and literary knowledge were most productively deployed in the revision and completion of scholarly texts’. He edited critical texts of Cicero’s letters: Ad Familiares 1902, Ad Atticum 1903, and Apuleius’ The Story of Cupid and Psyche. He taught in TCD from1881 until 1898 when he was appointed as professor of Latin. In 1923 he was elected a fellow of the British Academy, and received honorary degrees from Glasgow University 1914, Oxford 1923, and Durham 1931. He was elected a member of the Royal Irish Academy in 1884 and was secretary from 1902-1914.  He never married and lived at 8 Waterloo Road, Dublin. He did have a close friendship with ‘Lollie’ Yeats. His other interests included ancient law, history of modern literature and cricket. The writer William Murphy described him as ‘miserly, fearful and selfishly conservative’. R B McDowell and D A Webb stated that he was an ‘urbane and courteous host, a generous lender of books and a man who was able to fuse the roles of teacher and student’. His portrait was painted by his sister Sarah and by Leo Whelan and both are in Trinity College. He died on 20 March 1932 and is buried in Mount Jerome next to his sister Sarah and his brother John Mallet.

Louis Claude Purser (1854-1932)

New Irish Wake Museum

Waterford Treasures has just opened a new museum exploring the story of life and death from early Christian times to the 20th century. The museum is housed in a restored 15th-century Alms house, at Cathedral Square. We would like to wish former director Eamon McEneaney well on his retirement and congratulate Rosemary Ryan, who will take over the role.

Master McGrath Painting Donated

We were delighted to receive a donation of an historic oil painting featuring the famous greyhound Master Mcgrath and James Galwey of Colligan Lodge. The painting was donated by Prof. James Mason in memory of his late wife Mary Galwey Foley. The painting will be exhibited after restoration and framing.

Mary Crowley and Prof. James Mason, donating the painting of Master McGrath.

Stories from Old Newspapers

Galway Express 12th February 1916

Arrest of Mr. Claude A. Chevasse

Mr Claude A. Chevasse (1886-1971), of Oxford, well known in Irish language circles, has been arrested by the police in Ballingeary and taken to Macroom. The news of the arrest came as a shock to his numerous friends in Galway. Mr Chevasse has been frequently in this county, and was a regular attendant at St. Nicholas’s Church when visiting this city. His picturesque Irish costume always attracted attention, and he delivered a series of lectures on the Irish language in almost all the National Schools in the county. Mr Claude Chevasse is a cousin of Major Henry Chevasse, Whitfield Court, a gentleman who has served with distinction in the present war and also in South Africa.

It is stated that the cause of the arrest was that he [Claude] declined to speaking English when questioned by the police. Mr Chevasse is an M.A. of Oxford University. At Macroom Petty Sessions…Claud Chevasse…was charged under the Defence of the Realm Act with refusing to answer questions reasonably. The majority of the Bench decided to impose a fine of £4 and £1 costs. Mr Power (for accused) said his client would not pay the fine, and he asked to have an alternative named. The alternative of one moth without hard labour was arranged. The accused was offered a week to pay the fine in case an appeal was not proceeded with.

We are delighted to have a full-length portrait of Claude by the artist Pádraic Woods (1893-1991) wearing his traditional Irish costume. It was presented by the Friends of The National Collections.

Claude Chavasse 1886-1971

Stories from Old Newspapers

 Clonmel Chronicle 6 December 1876

Provident Organisations at Comeragh

During the week there might have been witnessed on the property of John Palliser, Esq., D. C., a scene which is the best illustration of that ‘Charity that vaunteth not itself’, and one, too, that has been enacted year after year for the last quarter of a century, so quietly and obtrusively that few beyond the recipients of the bounty  have heard of its existence; nor would greater prominence be given to it now, but with a hope that others possessing the ‘rights’ of property…may be led to exercise these in the same spirit of generous impulse towards their dependents.

For a great many years there has been a ‘Comeragh Clothing Club’ for poor housekeepers of the labouring class, widows, and others whose position renders them eligible members; who, as an incentive to provident habits, are required to contribute a fixed sum monthly, and at this season they receive double the amount in value – blankets, clothes, etc., for themselves or their children, the other moiety being contributed by the landlord. There are, besides these, the regular ‘pensioners’…who receive a monthly allowance of money. The numbers receiving aid from both sources exceed 100. The management of the club, and the dispensing of the gratuitous relief, have usually been entrusted to the agent’s lady, and the duties have, for a number of years been performed by Mrs Langley, Tay Lodge.

There is to be found here another association, which has conferred no small advantage on those who have availed themselves of its benefits. This is the ‘Cattle Insurance Club’, which was started some years ago, when the foot-and-mouth disease created such serious apprehensions as to call for the most energetic action…It is open to any tenant on the estate to insure his stock at a sum of a few pounds below their real value at a poundage which is every year regulated by varying circumstances…The conception and organisation of this valuable society are due to the late Thomas Hunt, Esq, and bear the impress of his comprehensive mind and business habits…

Captain John Palliser, Comeragh House, entertained during the past week, a distinguished party, including his Grace the Duke of St Albans, Sir George and Lady Leith, the Hon Miss Gough, Mr & Mrs Chichester, Castletown, and other friends…the gentlemen enjoyed good sport in the neighbouring preserves.      

Rear of Comeragh House , Circa 1900



Comhghairdeas to Aine Ui Fhoghlu

It has been announced that Waterford County Museum Trustee Aine Ui Fhoghlu has been amongst the recipients awarded a grant of up to 25,000 under the Markievicz Award 2023.

Aine will produce work in Irish based on the stories of local Cumann na mBan women. The awards are part of the Decade of Centenaries Programme.

Congratulations from all at Waterford County Museum.


Waterford County Museum would like to like to extend their condolences to the family and friends of the late Ita White.

Ita was a former secretary at the museum and her clerical skills experience was invaluable to the early development of the organisation.

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam.

Visit of Norwegian Ambassador to Museum

We were delighted to welcome the ambassador, Mari Skare and her colleagues to Waterford County Museum. They were accompanied by Bernadette Guest, Waterford City & County Heritage Officer.

The group were welcomed by Museum President Thomas Phelan, the curator William Fraher and by Chrissy Knight O’Connor. Chrissy gave a presentation on the award winning Gallowshill Community Archaeology project and the ongoing investigations into the Viking sites and place names in the Dungarvan area.

The ambassador was given a number of presentations, including local publications and a Viking goblet designed by Eamon Terry of Criostal Na Rinne. She was most impressed by the Gallowshill project and the commitment to carrying it through to excavation and a long-term plan.

The museum hopes to continue the links with Norway and carry out further investigations into our shared Viking Heritage.

Norwegian Ambassador Mari Skare, Museum Curator William Fraher and Museum President Thomas Phelan

Eddie Cantwell, Norwegian Ambassador Mari Skare and Chrissy Knight O’Connor

Stefanie Stude, Norwegian Ambassador Mari Skare, Anthony Healy and Brid Garcia

Stories from Old Newspapers

 Waterford Chronicle 23 July 1836

The Lord Lieutenant’s Tour

Their Excellencies the Earl and Countess of Mulgrave [Constantine Phipps (1797-1863) Lord Lieutenant 1831-38 and Home Secretary 1839-1841.He was married to Maria Liddell, daughter of 1st Baron Ravensworth] arrived at Lismore at half past five o’clock on Sunday evening, amidst the shouts and acclamations of thousands. They dined and slept at Lismore Castle, and next morning visited the Salmon Fisheries. The Lord Lieutenant, on his return, received a deputation with an address, and returned a most gracious answer. Their Excellencies then proceeded to Glencairn Abbey, the beautifully situated residence of Gervase Bushe, Esq., where they partook of a splendid lunch, and returned to the castle, and were met at dinner by a large party of the neighbouring nobility and gentry. The town and county around were beautifully illuminated, and the houses were decorated with laurel and evergreens. There was a display of fireworks on ‘the Inches’, just under the drawing-rooms of the castle. Their Excellencies set out on Tuesday morning for Dromana, the seat of Henry Villiers-Stuart, Esq., whence they proceeded to Youghal by water, and returned to dine at Lismore Castle. We understand that Monday the 8 August, is fixed for the Lord Lieutenant’s entry into the city. 

Note: In 1837 Samuel Lewis named Main Street in Dungarvan as Mulgrave Street. It may have been renamed by Dungarvan Corporation after this visit in 1836.

Glencairn Abbey, Lismore- Circa 1910




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