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A Survey of Monuments of Archaeological and Historical Interest in the Barony of Bunratty Lower, Co. Clare by William Gerrard Ryan

Part 4: Castles and tower houses c.1500
Chapter 43: Kilnasoolagh Parish


Nat. Grid Ref. R374686; ½” Sheet 17

R.C. Parish : Newmarket-on-Fergus
Townland : Ballyconneely
6” O.S. Sheet number : 42 (Co. Clare)
Reference : 9.2 cm South; 21.5 cm West
Height (G.L.) : 50’ O.D.
1” O.S. Sheet number : 133 (Sixmilebridge)

An examination of the relevant 6” O.S. Sheet will show: “Tower (site of)” in the south-west corner of Ballyconneely townland, near to where it joins Ballygirreen and Ballynacragga townlands.

Field examination failed to find any actual trace of a site here. Checking locally I was told that an old stone building (type unknown) that had existed here was, according to tradition, levelled in the nineteenth century and the stones carted away and used in the building of a new wing to nearby Dromoland Castle (i.e. House).

Exactly what was levelled? There is no folklore relating to a castle on this site. I have gone through: a) Curry and O’Donovan (1839) b) Frost c) Westropp and have found no evidence to suggest that a tower house existed in this site.

The fact that the word “Tower” is represented on the O.S. Sheets may, however, suggest that the cartographers had knowledge relating to the site that we do not possess. For that vague reason alone I will include it in this section.