Gardenham / An Garraí Mór
Compiled by Pierce Murphy
Irish name: An Garraí Mór
English name: Gardenham or Garrymore
Meaning: big garden or tilled field
Area: 210 acres, 1 rood, 20 perches.
Field names in this townland: Not yet recorded.
Information from O’Donovan’s Field Name Books
Names: Gardenham or Garrymore, Garraidh Mór, Monisca, Gorree mór, Gorrymore (B. S. Sketch Map), Garmahon and Monisky (County book), Mininusky (Inq. Temp. Jac. I), Gardenham (Local), Gardenham (Tythe Applotment Book dated 1825)
Description: Annaghdown Parish section: It is the property of Joyce, Esq. Under tillage. Small portion the S. E. end is subject to Winter floods by river running beside. Lackagh Parish section: It is the property of Walter Joyce, Esq., Merview, of which 6 acres at the western extremity is bog, the remainder is cultivated.
1841: 28 houses, 192 people (102 male, 90 female)
1851: 23 houses, 129 people (62 male, 67 female)
1861: 19 houses, 105 people (51male, 54 female)
1871: 22 houses, 108 people (52male, 56 female)
1881: 18 houses, 109 people (48 male, 61 female)
1891: 17 houses, 107 people ( 49 male, 58 female)
1901: 15 houses, 79 people (44 male, 35 female)
1911: 14 houses, 71people (41 male, 30 female)
2011: 20 houses (5 vacant), 51 people (22 male, 29 female)
The following tenants are listed in the Tithe Applotments Books:
Edie Concannon, Pat Sheridan, Wm Sheridan, Wm Browne, John Kilgariffe, John Burk, Pat Murphy, Martin Forde, Thomas Davin, James Burk, Pat Laffey, John and Wm Laffey and Chas Eare.
1855 Griffith’s Valuation
The following heads of household are recorded in the Annaghdown Parish section: Michael Kilgariff, John Browne, Patrick Browne, John Kilgariff, John Laffy, Thomas Laffy, Peter Burke, Thomas Burke, Patrick Murphy, Mary Ford, Martin Ford,
Peter Fanning, William Hughes, Patrick Lowry, James Sheridan, Martin Caulfield, Matthew Craven, Redmond Murphy, William Hughes.
Lackagh Parish section: Matthew Craven and Redmond Murphy had land only in the Lackagh parish section; their houses were in the Annaghdown parish section. William Hughes and Andrew Forde had houses and land in Lackagh parish.
The 1901 Census of Ireland records the following 15 houses in Gardenham/Garrymore, 11 in Annaghdown Parish and 4 in Lackagh Parish.
- Martin Browne (60), his wife Mary (50) and their children Patrick (30),Thomas (20) and Michael (16).
- Thomas Kilgariff (80), not married; lived with his sister Margaret Collins (69) (widow), a housekeeper, and her children John Collins (40) and Mary (34), farmer’s daughter.
- John Burke (50), his wife Honor (45), and children Peter (20) labourer, Mary (19), labourer, Walter (17) labourer, Michael (15), scholar, Bridget (13), scholar, and Norah (3).
- Bridget Murphy (65), widow, farmer, lived with her son William (28).
- Martin Forde (50), and his wife Mary (40), lived with their children Pat Forde (19), and Bridget Forde (15), their married daughter Mary Murphy (24), labourer’s wife, and Martin’s sister Bridget (60), domestic servant.
- Thomas Forde (46), farmer, and his wife Julia (35) lived with their daughter Mary (7).
- Michael Lowery (32) lived with his mother Ellen (60), widow. Michael was a wool weaver and his mother was a wool carder.
- Michael Laffey (67), widower, lived with his son Thomas (36), and Thomas’s wife Winnie, and their sons John (12) and Michael (3 months).
- John Laffey (40), farmer, and his wife Winnie (39), lived with their son John (12), daughter Maggie (8), and son Patrick (7).
- Thomas Fanning (48), farmer, and his wife Mary (30), lived with his brother John (40), labourer, and their children Peter (9), Myles (7), and Bridget (4).
- Michael Browne(55) farmer and his wife Honor(40) lived with their children, John(19), William(11), Mary(14) and Patrick(7)
- James Joyce (62), farmer, his wife Ellen, their children Pat (41), John (39) and John’ wife Kate [née Murphy], Delia (19), Mary (11 months) [John and Kate’s daughter].
- Patrick Hughes (62), his wife Mary and their children, John (29), James (27), Martin (14), Mary (20), Anne, (18) and Patrick (12), scholar.
- William Browne (50), (widower), farmer, his son Joseph (15) and daughter Katie (8), scholar.
- Edward Grealish (60), his wife Delia [née Creaven] and their children, Mathew (19), Michael (17) and Thomas (10), Annie (9), Bridget (7), Joseph (5) scholars and Maggie (2).
All houses had thatched roofs. Seven were of the second class and eight were third class. Seven had two windows, six had three windows and one had four windows.
All families had two, three, four or five out-offices except Michael Lowry, who had one (a piggery) and John Laffey who no out-offices.
The 1911 Census records 14 houses in Gardenham/Garrymore: 11 in Annaghdown Parish and 3 in Lackagh Parish.
- Martin Browne (70) lived with his wife Mary (68) and their sons Patrick (38) and Thomas (30).
- John Collins (56) lived with his sister Mary (44).
- John Burke (63) lived with his wife Honor (57) and their children Watt (27), Michael (24), Bridget (24), and Norah (13).
- Bridget Murphy (76), widow, lived with her son William (41), daughter-in-law Bridget (35), and grandchildren Patrick (4), Mary (1), Thomas (2 months) and her granddaughter Mary Joyce (11) [daughter of her widowed daughter Kate who was married to the late John Joyce from the same village].
- Mary Forde (69) lived with her son Patrick (30), her sister-in-law Bridget Forde (74) and her granddaughter Kathleen Murphy (11).
- Thomas Forde (60) lived with his wife Julia (52) and their daughter Mary (16). Two children were born but only one living.
- Ellen Lowery (74), widow, lived with her son Michael (45).
- Michael Laffey (80), widower, lived with his son Thomas (44), daughter-in-law Winnie (52) and grandchildren Margaret (12), Michael (10), and Thomas (7).
- John Laffey (56), widower, lived with son John (23) a groom, Maggie (21), Patrick (18), and Willie (9).
- Michael Browne (72), lived with his wife Nora (56) and their children John (27),Willie (21), and Patrick (16).
- Thomas Fanning (60) lived with his wife Mary (59) and children Peter (18), Myles (17), and Bridget (14).
1. James Joyce (74) lived with his son Pierce (42) and daughter-in-law Mary Ellen [née Grealish], grandchildren, Delia (4), Ellen (3), Margaret (2), Kate (1) and James (4 months), and a farm servant Thomas Laffey (14).
2. Patrick Hughes (73), widower, lived with his son John (34), daughter Anne and daughter-in-law Kate (25).
3. Edward Grealish (68) lived with his wife Delia (53) [née Creaven] and their children Michael (28), Thomas (26), James (24), Patrick (22), Delia (18), and Joseph (16). 11 children were born but only 8 were still living.
All houses were of stone with thatched roofs. Nine houses were second class and five were third class.
Eight houses had three windows in front, five had two windows and one house had four front windows.
Three families had five out-offices, three had four out-offices, five had three out-offices, one had two out-offices.
Two families had one out-office: the Laffey family had a cow house (Michael Laffey), and the Lowery family had a piggery. [The Lowerys were weavers and may have been getting milk from neighbours as part payment for their cloth].
Congested Districts Board
In 1909 the land in Gardenham, owned by Pierce Joyce of Merview, was bought by the Congested Districts Board.
In 1912, Major Sir Bryan Mahon sold his estate in Belleville (near Monivea) to the Congested Districts Board. They divided the land into holdings of circa 39 acres and built houses and out-offices on each farm and offered them for sale to small landowners from other congested areas in Galway. These farmers bought the holdings using loans from the British Government. Loans were to be repaid in the form a yearly rent or annuity in two payments annually. In 1914/ 1915 five families from Gardenham accepted offers of new holdings in Belleville. Their holdings included a 2 bedroom house with out-offices consisting of a barn, cow house, horses stable and a piggery and henhouse. The barn had a threshing/flailing machine which was horse powered from outside. It also had a hand operated winnowing machine.
The five families were Joyces, Brownes, Fannings, Burkes and Murphys. The descendents of these five families still live and farm in Belleville.
The land they vacated in Gardenham was divided among the families that remained. The Laffey family moved into the house vacated by the Joyce family and this was occupied up to the 1970’s.
Note: information in squared brackets, and the final section on the CDB, has been added by the author to the remaining information aggregated from the primary sources.