Video: Thatching in Cloonboo, with Marika Leen

Video: Thatching in Cloonboo, with Marika Leen

Evelyn Stevens talks to Dutch thatcher Marika Leen about the art of thatching and how she came to learn the trade. Filmed in Cloonboo, Annaghdown, Co. Galway in summer 2020, at the thatched cottage of Pete Smith and Evelyn Stevens. An initiative of the Annaghdown Heritage Society. Labhraíonn Evelyn Stevens leis an tuídóir Ollainnis, Marika Leen, faoi chéird na tuíodóireachta agus an bealach a d’fhoghlaim sí an céird. Taifeadta i gCluain Bú, Eanach Dhúin, Co. na Gaillimhe, i samhradh 2020, ag teach ceann tuí Pete Smith agus Evelyn Stevens. Tionscnamh de chuid Cumann Oidhreachta Eanach Dhúin.

Monastic and Medieval Annaghdown

Monastic and Medieval Annaghdown

The medieval monastery and bishopric of Annaghdown was once the most important ecclesiastical centre in Connacht after Tuam Archdiocese. The monastery of Annaghdown was founded by St Brendan and his sister St Briga around 550 AD in the territory of the little-known Delbhna Cuil Fabhair, on the south-east shore of Lough Corrib. This territory of Magh Seola (later the barony of Clare) was taken over after 800 by the Uí Briúin Seóla, ancestors of the Uí Fhlaithbertaig, and Annaghdown grew in power, attracting in the late 12th century two Continental monastic orders, the Arrouaisians and Premonstratensians, and rising after 1179 to become one of the five bishoprics of Connacht.

The Post Office

The Post Office

In 1659 the first service was established to convey mail from Dublin to Galway. By 1807 there was a regular mail coach service, taking almost 15 hours to complete the journey. With the completion of the railway in 1851, trains were then used for the transportation of letters and parcels.
In 1853 it became obligatory to use postage stamps. By 1872 there were 5 letter boxes in Galway city, at Rockbarton, Salthill, Nile Lodge, Mainguard Street and Eyre Square. At first all incoming mail had to be collected at the Post Office. It was not until the end of the nineteenth century that a free delivery service was set up. Postmen traversed their district daily on foot walking up to twenty miles. Cycle deliveries began in 1901, with the postman receiving 1 shilling weekly for cleaning and maintaining the bicycle. It was not until the 1960s that post vans were introduced into rural areas.

Máirtín Moylan, 1898-1923

Máirtín Moylan, 1898-1923

Máirtín Moylan was born on the 10th of November 1898 to Thomas and Honor Moylan, (née Burke from Ardgaineen) of Farmerstown. His father died in January 1899 leaving his mother to rear the family by herself. Could it be from here, looking at his mother’s strong will and determination that Máirtín found the resilience to see his cause through to the end in his later life? Honor may have needed time to get herself on her feet after her husband’s death, and on the 31st of March 1901, Máirtín is to be found in the census records listed in the house of his grandparents, Michael and Ellen Burke (née Boyle from Carrowbrowne) of Ardgaineen. How long he remained with his grandparents is not known but sending children to live with relatives was not an uncommon practice at the time to help with rearing the family. He was not to remain in Ardgaineen indefinitely and in time returned to his beloved Farmerstown.