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1814 Statistical Account

No. IX. Parish of CLONMANY,

(Diocese of Derry, and County of Donegal.)

By the Rev. F. L. Molloy.

III. Modern Buildings, etc.

Modern buildings there are a few, but we have no infirmaries, hospitals, jails, or workhouses. There are six or seven small bridges in the parish, the principal of which is Clonmany-bridge, on the united Clonmany and Ballyhallan rivers, about six miles from Carndonagh, and four from the fort of Dunree, and about eight miles from Buncrana, and half a mile from the church, and may he said to be about the centre of the parish. A mile east from this bridge, is the little village of Ballyliffin, centrally situated between Carndonagh and the Fort of Dunree, on the great road running between those places.

The road from Derry, through Buncrana, to the sea, at Binnion, cuts the parish south and north, for about four miles, the road from Carndonagh to the Fort of Dunree, cuts the parish longitudinally, for about eight miles, intersecting the former at Gaddyduff. From this point, westward about twenty perches, the road divides itself to the right and left: the latter branch only leads to a bog, on which, however, are two neat little bridges, the prircipal one of which is dignified with the name of the Priest's-bridge, contiguous to which is the seat of the Rev. Charles o'Shiel, the parish priest. The former branch runs nearly north for about a mile, and then takes a western direction for about three miles, opening a passage to two good market-towns; viz. Malin and Carndonagh. Nearly parallel to this, and about three miles and a half off; runs another road from Buncrana; through the parish of Desertegne, across the high hill of Mamore, (Mam-mor, a great gap,) thus opening a communication to another good market-town, to the south of the western extremity. There are other roads locally advantageous, but not worthy of notice here.

A part or the lands of this parish belongs to the Bishop of Derry, and the remainder was the fee-simple estate of the Marquis of Donegal, until in the year 1810, when the townlands of Tullagh, Kinnea, Letter, Dunaff, Urrismana, Leenan, and, in the year 1811, the townlands of Carrickabrahey, Carareagh, Altohalla, Ballymacmurty, Ballyliffin, Ardagh, Cleagh, Rooskey and Meentagh were sold; the former to Sir Robert Harvey, and the latter to Thomas Harvey, Esq. who are non-residents. The sales did not, however, change the fee-simple property, as only a term of 1000 years, from the decease of the late marquis, was made for a pepper-corn.

The Rev. Dr. Chichester, who now lives at Dresden, resided in this parish for upwards of 40 years, and of course has made it much more respectable than it otherwise would: his son, Arthur Chichester, Esq. M. P. has a neat little villa at Roxton, at which he very seldom resides. John O'Donnel, Esq. has a bathing-lodge at Cleagh, where he and family reside every year for a few weeks: if we add to these three corn-mills, and saltpans; which are at the mouth of Lough Swilly, there are but few other houses worthy of notice. There are no inns and what is very remarkable, very few shebeeners in the parish; so that I can with justice testify, that the morals of the people are much better that might naturally be expected in a spot where illicit distillation is much pursued.

The scenery about the church is truly grand and picturesque. It is situated on a rising ground or gentle activity skirted on the north by the beautiful demesne of the Rev. Dr. Chichester; to the west lie the tremendously high mountains of Rachtion and Crucknackeera; on the east of it, is a fine flat country, while On the north-cast are the beautiful green meadows of the Rev. Dr. Chichester, which are irrigated by the conflux of the Clonmany and Ballyhallan. The superficial appearance of the other parts of the parish is not so facinating, being, for the most part, destitute of standing timber; although it must be admitted, that the land is good in itself and well cultivated.

I. The Name of the Parish, Situation, Extent, etc.
       II. Mines, Minerals, etc.
       III. Modern Buildings, etc.
       IV. Ancient Buildings, etc.
       V. Present and former State of Population, Food, Fuel, etc
       VI. The Genius & Disposition of the Poorer Classes, etc.
       VII. The Education and Employment of Children, etc.
       VIII. State of Religious Establishment, Tithes, etc, etc.
       IX. Modes of Agriculture, Crops, etc.
       X. Of Trade, Manufactures, Commerce, etc.
       XI. Natural Curiosities, remarkable Occurrences, etc.
       XII. Suggestions for Improvement, etc.
       APPENDIX : TOWNLANDS, their Derivations, etc.

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