Monday, March 29, 2010

How to be Prosperous in the current economic climate.(& post boxes revisited)

It is very difficult for the prosperous to be humble” Jane Austin
So my simple plan is move here and no matter how destitute you become you will always be a Prosperous person, I guarantee 100%  success on my scheme or your money back ;-D.
The town of Prosperous in Kildare was founded in 1785 by Robert Brook as a Cotton Manufacturing. It was built similar to other projects as an attempt at industrial development in the country. Like the others it was a disaster, Prosperous was such a failure that in sixty years all that remained was a pile of stones and its ironic name. This is part of the town that was developed in 1780, it still remains as a thriving village.
This is the old post office, it is retains its old shop design, the post box has no markings so hard to tell what era its from.
The ruination of the town was not helped by the 1798 rising, when the Irish rebels attacked the British forces and held the town for one month before being overrun by the English.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

St Canice, Barrack Obama, Witchcraft & Kilkenny

All of these are connected to this building, Kilkenny gets its name from Canice, in Irish Cill Chainnigh means the church of Canice. This site was a church since the 6th century, later on a stone structure would have replaced the timber, the present building that stands today was started in the 13th Century. It started out as a Roman Catholic church but ended up a Church of Ireland Cathedral.
These two graves have been recently traced to Barrack Obama, the one on the wall was his sixth generation grand uncle John Keaney 1741-1813 the one on the floor his son John Kearney 1838,a line that died out with the death of Johns son with cholera in 1824. This is the only place in Ireland that a physical tombstone can be found of his ancestors, or a house that an ancestor lived in. Barrack is a direct decendent of John's seniors brother Michael. This is on Barracks Mothers side, Michael Kearney can be traced to Moneygall  in Co Offaly. Both places are hoping that Barrack will visit if he comes over to Ireland.

Only a few steps from the burial place of Barrack Obama's ancestors is the tomb of  Dame Alice Kytler. She was an educated independent woman with strong opinions who had outlived three of her husbands, with a fourth following hotly in their footsteps, which in those times was not a great combination. On top of this her darling son accused her of sweeping the dust of the town to his door uttering the prayer "To the house of William my son, hie all the wealth of Kilkenny Town."  She was condemned to death along with her maid for the crime of witchcraft, they fled Dame Alice got away but her maid Petronella got caught. Petronella the poor dear has the honour of being the first Irsh person to be burned alive at the stake for being a witch. Alice got the blame for the collapse of the tower onto the church, yet still she was buried there on her death.

Some of the Church of Ireland tombs, apparently some of the men loved their dogs (hint look at thier feet).
In 1650 the City had suffered from the plague and was weakened and was a target of Oliver Cromwell after he had rested his troops after their butchery at the sacking of Wexford town. The City under Butler managed to defend its walls for a time, but eventually had to surrender under Terms in case it received the same fate as Irish Town or Gowran after the wall was breached and the Cathedral was taken. The troops destroyed all the Catholic gravestones and the building passed over to the Church of Ireland. These gravestones below were from the Catholic graveyard that were rescued and preserved as part of the flooring.
Some of the stained glass windows in the church
The roof was replaced in the 19th century to what the Victorian designers thought that it would have looked like in medievil times.
The Tower was built in the 9th Century but fell in the 1300's, being blamed on the witch Dame Alice Kytler. It was rebuilt at that time but lower than the original, it does not have much of a foundation only .6m deep and when excavated in the 1800's there were graves underneath.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Rock of Dunamase, Portlaoise

I have passed this place quite a lot but never had the time or the Daylight to stop, I got the chance finally, there are quite a lot of pictures. This first one is the view from the road.
The Rock Of Dunamase or in Irish Dun Masc the fort of Masc dates back to the 9th Century, there is records of the Vikings attacking it in 845 when the abbot of Terryglass was killed there. This is a representation of what it would have looked like. 
It was an Ideal location as a fort as there its is the highest point in the flat plains of the midlands. There was no castle built until the 12th century, but there is nothing to say who built the castle but it was later given to Strongbow the Norman who married the daughter of the King of Leinster. It was in the hands of the Marshalls for a few generations and then through marriage on to the Mortimers until 1330 when Roger Mortimer was executed for treason. 
It was taken over by an Irish Clan the Moores was in ruin by 1350, must have been one hell of a party.
In the 17th Century a guy named Parnell built a banqueting hall in the ruins that was incorporated into the ruins

Large bit of overturned foundation, I wonder was this from the time that Cromwells troops used artillery on the ruins to make sure it could not be used by Catholics as a fort.
View from the battlements
The birds roosting for the night

More of the battlements remains where you get views of the horizon.
The main Building
A view of the plains to the east
The hills to the south with the remains of the gate
Random walls 
Panoramic picture of the site from the gatehouse
Views of the horizon from the windows and doors
Some shots as the sun was setting, the first one has an airplane flying by
A Panoramic view at Sunset