Prosser’s Receipt (Archive Month #23)

To finish off the August Is Archive month series, something very special. Here is a receipt from H. B. Prosser’s High-Class Grocer and Provision Merchant issued in 1948. Isn’t it just amazing?! Huge thanks to Úna Wogan and Nancy Doran for this one.

If you have any old receipts, leaflets or other ephemera relating to Enniskerry, I would love to arrange to take a photograph of it so it can be archived for future safe-keeping.

Curtlestown: Request for aid for salary for Asst Teacher 1875: ED1/97 (Archive Month #22)

ED1/97 No. 52, Curtlestown Roll #1119, Co. Wicklow, District 40

Request for aid by Thomas O’Dwyer towards the salary of an assistant teacher

5 April 1875

Jeremiah Golden is the principal, Margaret Dowling in the W-mistress, Mary A Doyle is monitress

Request for aid for Sarah ?Morris?/?Morrin? age 17yrs, appointed 17-2-1875.

70 males, 77 females currently enrolled in the school, average 30.3 males, 34.4 females

Report on application

Details as above – inspector comments that he believes the services of an assistant to be most necessary; such an appointment has been desirable since the superannuation of the late principal(E Phillips (July 73) as the attendance increased hugely after that change but no eligible person offered till lately.

Curtlestown NS: Application for Asst. Teacher Salary 1863: ED1/95 (Archive Month #21)

Further Application, 9 Jul 1863: ED1/95 No. 96 – Curtlestown Roll #1119, Co. Wicklow, District 40 & 38

Application referred to sub-committee 8th Sept 1863


to be answered on application to the commissioners of national education for aid towards the

Salary of an Assistant Teacher

In Curtlestown National School

in the Parish of Powerscourt County of Wicklow

  1. How many apartments are there in this house used as a school house?


  1. What are the internal dimensions of each?

No answer

  1. State the name of the teachers employed in each school room

Evan Phillips

  1. State the Christian and Surname of the Assistant Teacher or Teachers on whose behalf you now apply?

Anne Toole

  1. State also the age of each

Anne Toole 16 yrs

  1. Did they ever conduct a National or any other school?

Not any

  1. If so state the name of such national schook, and during what period?

  1. State the date of appointment to this school

1st June

  1. What testimonials of fitness for their office can they produce

Examiner and inspector

  1. What are the internal dimensions of the school in which the assistant is employed?

No answer

  1. How many children are on the roll?

No answer

  1. What has been the average daily attendance for the last six months?

No answer

  1. State the names of the other teachers in the school-room in which the assistant is employed?

No answer

  1. Is the assistant employed in teaching every day, and during the whole of ordinary school hours?

No answer


Thomas O’Dwyer, Manaager or Correspondent, 9th Day of July, Enniskerry Post Town



Note at back


Subcommittee 16 Sept 1863


That Anne Toole be paid as Monitress (Senior) of the fourth year from the 1st of June

In ?acc after? the advice that qualifications of —- Toole do not at present warrant her appointment as assistant


Accompanied by: [dated 14th August 1863]


In Curtlestown National School

Parish of Powerscourt Conty of Wicklow

Patron or Correspondent: Rev Thos O’Dwyer Rel. Dn. R. C.  Post Town Enniskerry


  1. No. of apartments in this house used as school  Two
  2. Internal dimensions of each        29 ½ x 20(13) x 10 and 20 x 14 x 10
  3. State the number and names of teachers already recognized by the Board in each room and their Class Evan Philips 13            Margaret Dowling, –?rllmistress
  4. State the name of monitors or assistants already recognized by the Board if any                None
  5. State the names of of the other teachers already recognized by the Board if any in the school room in which this assistant is employed     Principal Teacher Evan Phillips
  6. State the Christian and Surname of the Assistant Teacher or Teachers on whom whose behalf this application is made    Anne Toole
  7. Age        16
  8. If ever before employed in a National School, state the name and county of last National School where they were employed, the date of their leaving it and their present class and division             Never employed
  9. State the date of his or her appointment to this school  June 9th 1863
  10. What testimonials of fitness for their office can they produce     No special testimonials
  11. Is the assistant for whom aid is sought employed every day in teaching and during the ordinary school hours      Yes
  12. State your origin of the teacher for whom salary is sought as to competency       Not competent as a ?probalissier? but ?coneshe? qualified by moderate ?exertion?
  13. As to character  Good
  14. What are the internal dimensions of the school room in which this assistant is employed?            29 ½ in length, part 20 in breadth, part 13, 10 ft high
  15. No. of children now on rolls?

Males 66              Females 60         Total 126

  1. Average daily attendance for the last four months?

Males 29              Females 25         Total 54

  1. No. of children present on day of visit?

Males 44              Females 34         Total 78

  1. Note any circumstance connected with this application you may consider material for the information of the Commissioners, and state fully the grounds upon which you recommend this application to be granted or rejected.                Special and somewhat peculiar circumstances stated on other side of report
  2. Date of visit 29th July 1863             [Signed District Inspector of National Schools]

Note on back of form

The chief and almost the only question in this case is whether a post can be given in addition to the aid already granted to this school. It has been repeatedly threatened that the salary of the ?rollmistress? should be withdrawn unless the yearly average should reach 45 at least. The attendance has risen very considerably of late and from no ascertainable cause except that a teacher in whom the public have confidence has replaced inefficient teachers. This time twelve months the number on the rolls was 36 males 45 females. Now there are 66 males 60 females, an increase little short of double and giving promise of an average yearly attendance of 60 and upwards.

If this attendance be not difficient to entitle the school to a part of an assistant, the question is to be considered whether the assistant on whose behalf this application is made and whose ?gr—th–? And present ?defection? experiments are a further obstacle to her being recognized as a teacher, may — specially recognized as a Senior Monitor. To appoint her as such —fully meet the expenses of the ?cade? – and it seems to be an experiment which is worth trying as an encouragement to the recent progress of the school.

Curtlestown NS Application for a Workmistress ED1/96 1855 (Archive Month #20)

ED1/96 No. 7 – Curtlestown Roll #1119 Co. Wicklow, District 40 & 38


Application from Thomas O’Dwyer for Margaret Dowling, aged 35 to be paid as a workmistress. She commenced work on 26th March 1855. References are based in Bray. Can teach dressmaking and shirtmaking. Can teach all days 10 to 3 and Saturdays 10 – 1. Needlework will be taught in a separate apartment to the ordinary school room. The school on this date had an average daily attendance of 21 males and 22 females over the previous 6 months. 57 female children were to receive instruction, and this number was likely to increase.

A note on the back indicated an £8 salary for the workmistress.

The accompanying report states that the other teacher in the school on this date (28 June 1855) was John Byrne. There were 70 males and 60 females on the roll, and that the presence of a work school in the locality would be of great good, as the large female population of the locality are at present without any opportunity of learning needlework. Note adds that Dowling had previous work experience in Little Bray National School for more than two years. Adds that “the average female attendance will be small during the winter months owing to the rugged mountainous nature of the country and the great distance many of the pupils are obliged to travel daily to the school from their respective homes. A respectable attendance may be counted upon during the summer half year. On the whole I think the case is deserving of a favourable consideration.”


Brassington & Gale Valuation of Powerscourt 1853: Tenant Names (Archive Month #18)

In 1853, during the minority of the 7th Viscount Powerscourt, the firm Brassington and Gale (Bachelor’s Walk) were requested to carry out a valuation of all property on the Estate, to assist the Guardians of the estate in deciding on rents that should be charged for land. They produced a ledger of incredible detail, which is now in the National Library of Ireland (MS 2740) that lists all of the townlands in the Wicklow estate (Enniskerry and Castlemacadam), the tenants in each of the holdings in these townlands, their area and their value.

Below, I have reproduced some of this—namely the townlands, their total acreage and value, and the tenants names given in each. There is a return for each holding, so in many cases a tenant’s name will appear more than once. For each holding, the original lists several sub-sections—e.g. arable fields, rocky land, boggy land and their component values and areas—this isn’t reproduced. Therefore the list below should be read as all of the holdings within a townland, bearing in mind that their value was comprised of several sub-sections. Also, some holdings have joint tenants—I would imagine that these are usually related in some way.

Of course, there were many more tenants than are listed here—I suppose they sub-let land from the listed tenants. I am really just listing these names as a genealogical resource, so hope it is of some interest. There does seem to have been a map to accompany this report, but I haven’t seen it yet (I’m not even sure if it still exists). I have occasionally recorded details of note, usually any significant buildings that were noted or anything that was occupied directly by the estate (!In hand”). Unfortunately, details in the village were scant – buildings were only listed as dwellings, sub-divided by whether they had slated or thatched roof. Businesses or types of buildings, with some rare exceptions, were not indicated.

[table id=8 /]

ED1 File – Annacrevy NS (Archive Month #17)

Annacrevy school was a very old school in the parish—probably built at the same time as Powerscourt NS—and this application would lead it to being taken into connexion with the Board of Education, in 1866. The principal, Philip O’Connor, had been principal in the school since the early 1850s. The school no longer operates.

Co. Wicklow, District 40 ED1/101 No 89; 19-11-1866

(School Roll Number not noted)

Application for payment of teachers salary

Annacrevy, County of Wicklow, Barony of Rathdown, Parish of Powerscourt, Townland of Annacrevy

3. Enniskerry nearest post-town, 2 miles N of school

4. a large two story house in good condition

5. One schoolroom 40 ft by 16ft well lighted by 6 large windows

6. Four wooden desks each 10 feet long old and much worn. Twelve forms each 9 feet good. Teachers table and school press good.

7. Philip O’Connor, aged 54 years, Anne (daughter) aged 32 years

8. Av att 15, viz 10 13 5.

9. School opens at 10 AM and closes at 3 PM

10 From 10 am till 11 ½ Scriptural & Catechetical instruction

11. The books in use are those prescribed by the Ch. Ed. Society.

12. Visitors are admitted during school hours but no visitor is permitted to examine the pupils without the approbation of Patron or Superintendent

13 Patron The right Hon Viscount Powerscourt, Enniskerry

—- superintendent

Rev J L Bernard

Rev C McDonagh, Curate



States that the school was established over 50 years since. Only 1 dwelling/family is within a half mile radius of the site. Curtlestown is the nearest National school and its attendance will not be affected by this school. Other schools nearby are Enniskerry school, now an applicant (for the NS system?); also infant school and a private school in Enniskerry taught by a superannuated teacher formerly of Curtlestown NS.

School was hitherto connected with church Education Society, no aid in money, and the connexion will cease if school be aided by the Board. Lord Powerscourt, himself the patron, makes the change.

School is built of stone and mortar and slated, is in good repair without offices. It was built from funds of a former Lord Powerscourt. School rooms are also used for Divine  Service of the Church of England every Sunday afternoon.

A portion of the house is occupied by a teacher, without inconvenience to the school. Teacher is Philipp O’Connor, 54, appointed in Sept 51. £35 is currently provided by Lord Powerscourt, along with a good house, rent free.

Time for religious instruction will be altered to 2 – 3 per day as in Enniskerry school.

There were 10 children present at the time of inspection present (6M 4F), three are 21 males and 9 females on the books, with an average daily attendance of 13 over the last 6 months (gender not distinguished).

Rev Thomas O’Dwyer stated his determination to oppose the attendance of catholic children so long as the school shall be under a protestant teacher.

Lord Powerscourt, through his agent Mr Posnett, stated that Lord Powerscourt will provide for any expenditure necessary in fitting up the school.

The only impediment to the school being received into connexion with the Commissioners is the use of the School for Divine Service.

ED2 Files: Enniskerry No. 2 NS (Archive Month #16)

These archives relate to Enniskerry No. 2 School, initially housed in the old fever hospital, then behind the library, before moving to its present location beside the RC Church. These ED2 files trace the minutes from the establishment of the School in 1869 to 1905.

ED2/157 Folio 9 (19 crossed out)

Roll number is 10177, subsequently crossed out. Locally established 22 Feb 1869, dimensions etc not given.



6 Apr 1869

Grant £14 salary to Mary Ryan from 1.3.69 – books for 50, sale stock £1 : 5 : 0. Rev T O’Dwyer named as manager and correspondent

18 May 1871

Temporary change of house pending erection of new house, sanctioned till 31-8-71

12 Dec 1872

Mary Hayden dismissed from 31.1.73 for insufficient answering at exams

27 Feb 1874

As to erection of new school – wait


Application for new school (Roll Number 11353) – cancel roll No 10177


Inspector (manager being dead) to explain to teacher why passes in girls roll book were disallowed. ?– Given date – is this entered on this page in error?


Mary Ryan 1.3.69 to 30.6.71

Mary Hayden Principal, 1.7.71 dismissed from 31-7-73.

Folio 16

Roll number 11353 (states that transferred to District 38 from 1.4.79)

Taken into connection with the board 1 Nov 1875, transfer from roll number 10177.



21 Dec 1875

On application – Grant £32 salary to Jm Golden from 1.11.75, free stock for 100 pupils.

15 Dec 1875

On application, note from Lord Powerscourt acceding to applicants request to become patron. Applicants requested to say whether we are to enter Lord Powerscourt’s name on books as Patron.

L2110/75 from applicant states that he only intended Lord P to become joint patron with him

By a noting dated 21.12.75 applicant withdraws Lord Powerscourt’s name as Joint Patron

14 Dec 1876

Managers informed that the commissioners cannot sanction appointment of female monitress as the average is amply sufficient for a female assistant . Proprietry of appointing an A-?D? suggested?


£25 salary with share of results fees to Anne Golden as assistant from 1.4.78

9.Jan 1879

Manager requested to caution monitors for irregularity in signing vouchers


·         Jmh golden Principal, 1119 D 40 (– reference to coming from Curtlestown?)

·         Annie Golden, Assistant, appointed 1-4-78 from Stonepark, Roll No 7878, D 28.

ED2/151 Folio 38

States that school became connected with board on 1st Nov 1875, it is non vested and Rev T O’Dwyer is the original applicant and correspondent. There are two school rooms, 41 x 20 ½ x 11 feet. The roll number is 11353

Note at top says transferred from District 40 from 1-4-79




Correspondence 18/11/79, Rules, books, house, teacher, — proficient, satisfactory. Teachers Jeremiah Golden (Principal) and Ann Golden (Asst)

1 Jun 1880

Rev T Dwyer, manager, informed that head inspector states that school is badly organised and master;s arrangements unskilful.

3 Aug 1880

Mary j Dempsey continued as 2nd class monitor for a 2nd period of service from 1.1.80 as she is ineligible for promotion to the rank of first class monitor under rule 183.

30 Jun 1883

Wm Patterson asked to forward report of trial on charge of seduction against Mr J Golden, master. Case up with file No_____ [no number].

14 Nov 1883

Rev T O’Dwyer PP Manager informed that it is not desirable that Mrs Golden, Asst, should become substitute for Mr J Golden, master, during his absence in training. Miss Feehily will be accepted as qualified substitute for Mr Golden.

Nov 1885

Appears to be a quote from report RR 13022.12.85

Showing regard to the favourable character upon the whole of this report and to the fact that while Jeremiah Golden was undergoing the course of training upon which he passed the unsatisfactory examination, he was labouring under great anxiety and distraction of mind consequent upon a false accusation of a grievous character: ordered that the depression in classification which ensued upon the unsatisfactory be now rescinded and that Jeremiah Golden be recognized as ranking in his original class 3I.

Note at bottom says transferred to Dist 40 folio 87 Vol II from 1 April 1886.

 ED2/157 Folio 87

Roll number 11353



14 Dec 1886

Agricultural supt. – School garden recognised from 1 April 86.

20 May 1889

Rev M Patterson PP recognised as manager, he being the clerical successor to Rev T O’Dwyer

28 June 1890

Rev Charles Cuddihy PP recognised as being manager, being clerical successor to Rev Michael Patterson who has resigned and left Ireland

No date

Agl. L68 with school garden results to report part II, 14.6.93 – Mr Carroll informed that commissioners have learned that it is a practice of children of this school to follow travellers along the road with flowers got sale ad that practice appears to commissioners to ne objectionable on several grounds and therefore to be discouraged.

11 Aug 1896

Salary withdrawn from monitor, Michael Golden for unsatisfactory answering on results and special courses

9 Apr 1898

Manager informed that it is open to him to make arrangements on the timetable of the school for the dismissal of the infant pupils at 2 pm should he approve of this course as under all circumstances desirable. In the revised rules about to be issued.  There will be found a proviso for the shortening the school time for this class of pupils at option of managers whether in the case of a continuous days’ attendance on in two separate attendances with suitable interval.

Manager states he does not wish to make any changes at present in school time of infants.

7 Dec 1898

Exemption from —(Industrial?) Prog. granted for current results period until further notice.

9 Nov 1899

Manager informed that as Miss Mary Golden is not serving as teacher or monitor in Enniskerry (2) NS she does not fulfil the conditions laid by Eng. Education department (for entrance to Training College).

19 April 1902

Manager informed a proper cause in case of epidemic (include children from infected houses) – usual letter. In reply, he states that he is glad to learn that he is not bound to close school. “Note and up”

15 Dec 1902

Inspector asked if rule as to extra instruction of monitor is non complied with

26 Mar 1903

Inspector replies that rule will be observed in future

4 Mar 1904

Manager informed that the inspectors reports on the school are not such as would warrant the commissioners in increasing the present grant to the principal teacher, Mr Jeremiah Golden.

28 Mar 1904

Manager informed that a teacher who has not merited even one “Good” report out of three should not expect an increase of salary and that Mr J Golden, Principal teacher, has only gained “Fair” reports.

31 May 1905

Salary withdrawn from Jeremiah Golden from 30/6/05 – inefficiency – claim for pension to be applied to the pensions office

1 Aug 1905

Late Jeremiah Golden informed through the manager that an excess fee of 2/7/ ¾ may be charged as an average school fee from the pupils between 3 and 15 attending this school.

15 – ? – 1905

Inspector states that Mr Golden late teacher injured the school garden by mutilating about a dozen rose trees.

Late teacher Mr Golden entitled to pension of £35 per annum.

Registration continued in Co Wicklow, Vol I, Folio 76.

ED1 File: Enniskerry (Powerscourt) Nov 1866 (Archive Month #15)

This application refers to Powerscourt National School in the centre of the village. Formerly named Enniskerry, its name was later changed to Powerscourt. Established in 1818, this application would mean that it would be taken into connexion with the Board of Education from 1866, with the role number 9760. In 2011, the school is still on this site and is the oldest school building in Ireland still in use as a school.

Powerscourt Roll #9760 – Co. Wicklow, District 40 – ED1/97 No. 6

Application by Viscount Powerscourt to the commissioners of National Education for aid towards payment of teacher’s salary and for supply of requisites

Enniskerry School, County of Wicklow, Barony of Rathdown, Parish of Powerscourt, Townland of Kilgarron

Questions not given.

3. Enniskerry

4. Very good

5. One 44 x 16

6. Tolerably good

7. James Doherty age 30, Isabella Doherty 24 yrs

8. 20 av

9. 10 o’clock to 3

10. 2 to 3

11. Those published by C. E. Society

12. Every day at any hour

13. Patron Lord Powerscourt [illegible – — Revd Charles McDonagh Ch. Of ?Engd?] Curate of Powerscourt

Note added:

Lord Powerscourt particularly wishes that this teacher be appointed by the board to this school. Should be competent to play —- in —- in the church at Enniskerry and lead the singing as also teach children singing. The mistress should be a good seamstress.


Note added overleaf – mentioning £15 salary for James Doherty, 8/1/67.


Report on application for aid towards payment of teacher’s salary [8 Dec 1866]

Reports that school was established more than 40 years ago in the Parish of Powerscourt, Kilgarron Townland, Barony of Rathdown. It is in the village of Enniskerry.

Nearest National Schools:

1.  Curtlestown Non-vested        2 3/10 miles away            49 for quarter ended 20 Sept, 48 for quarter ended 30 Sept 66 (male/female??)

Not affected by this school

Nearest Infant Schools

Enniskerry Infant School in the village, Annacrevy 2 ½ miles nearby, Scalp school scriptural 2 ¼ mile. In Enniskerry a private school, taught by a former master of Curtlestown school

Other applicant schools nearby

Annacrevy for a —- Lord Powerscourt now applies is 2 ½ miles nearby from this school

Connection with other society and whether it will continue

Heretofore in connexion with the Church Education society; no money aid, inspection; the connexion will cease

Lord Powerscourt – the patron – makes the change

No connexion to a church or chapel


School is built of stone and mortar, an excellent house in good repair. Offices in tolerable repair, require some attention.

44 foot long, 16 broad, 15 high, built by a former Lord Powerscourt.

6 large windows, can be opened with boards on the floor. A portion of the house is occupied by the teacher, with no inconvenience to the school. 6 desks and forms, ample accommodation. Suitable desk for teacher, bookshelves with lock and a clock. No rack as yet to suspend timetable, general lesson and commandments.

Wholly employed as a school, and an evening school, 9 pupils attending the latter.

Master James Doherty appointed to school in July ’66. Isabella Doherty. Received training from Church Education Society training school- the master has a second class certificate and a number of good testimonials. Teacher is a clerk of the church (£10) and an organist (£10). £50 local funds paid by Viscount Powerscourt for both salaries. Scholars pay 1d per week and 5?s? per quarter, estimating £5 per quarter for school fees. No students at present attend freely.

The school will be available to children of all denominations. Books published and sanctioned by the board will be used. Religious instruction in the school room from 2 to 3 o’clock, which will not interfere with secular business of school.

Attendance seems to be composed chiefly of the children of tradesmen, some small farmers in Lord Powerscourt’s employment

At time of inspection, there were 16 males, 4 females. On the books, three are 27 males, 11 females.

Inspector had an interview with the Parish Priest, Rev Mr O’Dwyer. He objects to the school as being conducted by a protestant teacher and declares that he will oppose the attendance of any children of his flock while such teachers are continued

The agent for Lord Powerscourt (now in England) Mr Posnett gave assurances that any improvements requested by the board would be carried out.

ED1 File: Enniskerry No. 2 March 1869 (Archive Month #14)

This application refers to a school that was housed in a room in the old Fever Hospital on Kilgarran Hill. As this was the first application for this school, it would have meant that on acceptance, this school would be taken into connection with the Board of Education. The School would later move to a site next to the library, and move again to its present position beside the church.

ED1/97  No. 22: Enniskerry No.2 Roll #10177 Co. Wicklow, District 40

Application by Rev Thomas O’Dwyer, 10 March 1869, for aid towards the payment of teacher’s salary and supply of requisites.

No questions on form

  1. Enniskerry
  2. Wicklow, Rathdown, Powerscourt, Kilgarron
  3. Enniskerry
  4. One room, well built, lighted and ventilated with a good boarding
  5. The room is 20 feet 2 inches by 18 feet – height 11 ½ feet
  6. Two large tables and a sufficient of forms for present use
  7. Mary Ryan – aged 19 years
  8. Average – boys 21.6 girls 20.8
  9. From 10 am to 3 pm
  10. Religious instruction to protestants and Roman Catholics on alternate days – RC – Monday Wednesday Friday; P. On the other days
  11. The elementary National School Books
  12. The National School Board rule regarding visitors observed
  13. Patron – the Right Honourable The Viscount Powerscourt; Manager Rev T O’Dwyer PP
  14. The Rev Thomas O’Dwyer, Enniskerry

Note on back indicates £14 salary for Mary Ryan from 1st March 1869


Report on application

States school was established 22 Feb 1869. Notes two national schools nearby, Curtlestown, 2 ½ miles, average attendance 44 and Enniskerry, a few perches, average attendance 22. Both non-vested. A tracing showing the position of the schools is included. (based on County Wicklow, sheet 7). Infant school is also marked. States also that the school is entirely new. It is built of stone etc, slated in good repair. No offices as yet exist for the school. School room is 20 feet long, 18 feet wide and 11 feet high. It was built in a large house formerly a hospital property of Lord Powerscourt. Wholly employed as a school house. There are three windows, 5 by 3 ¾ feet. No portion of the house is as yet occupied by teachers, but “it is probable that one of the vacant rooms will be allowed for teachers use. This would not cause inconvenience.”

Other rooms – “Three rooms are occupied by families in Lord Powerscourt’s employment”.

Desks – six desks and forms of good make have been ordered, length 10 feet. A table for the teacher has been ordered. Teacher is Mary Ryan, aged 19 ½. She served as a paid monitress.

Usage of school: Up to this date there has been no national school nearer than Curtlestown to which Roman Catholics parents have been at liberty in all respects to send their children.

Attendance, from 22 Feb (opening of school)

–          23 males, 23 females present at time of inspection

Inspector has communicated by letter with the protestant rector. He has not replied; is ?correspondent of the Enniskerry N. School supported by Viscount Powerscourt who extends his patronage to this school also.

Report states that no offices are available to the school but Lord Powerscourt has undertaken to get some wooden structures put up.

In reporting whether the inspector had communicated with Lord Powerscourt, he wrote:

“Lord Powerscourt signified his intention of being present at inspection but could not come and requested that — report to him the communication of the school. In reply to my communication he agreed to arrange for a free apartment for the teacher and temporary out offices. He will probably find a site for a new school-house if this school succeeds in reference to attendance, etc for the school will accommodate a considerable number of children who cannot otherwise share the advantages of a National Education; as it is established under favourable ?auspices? and likely to prove efficient, I recommend it with confidence for the Commissioners acceptance and aid.

Mar 16th 1869, S MacSheehy, District Inspector of Schools.

Note added to cover: Grant 1/4/69.


Powerscourt National School – ED 2 Files (Archive Month #13)

The following transcriptions come from the ED2 files for Enniskerry, later named Powerscourt National School. The school came into connection with the Board quite late – over 30 years after the Board was established. For more context and detail, see the book for more. The ED2 files are held in the National Archives of Ireland, and they detail minuted notes made about each school. According to the National Archives on their website:

(ED 2 files) are primarily minute books of all proceedings taken in connection with each school. Each school is given a folio number, and at the head of each folio are particulars of the school, as follows: roll number, location, relation if any to religious house, date of establishment, date when taken into connection by the Board, particulars of lease, patrons, controlling committee if any, number and dimensions of schoolrooms, and various particulars relating to the financing of the school. In addition to minutes, the registers may also contain material relating to school finances, attendance, and abstracts of reports by inspectors. Registers for the period 1832-c.1900 are accessible. Those for the period thereafter are inaccessible.

ED2/157 – Folio 4

Note at top says transferred to District 38 from 1.4.79. School became connected with board 8/1/1867.

Date Notes
8-Jun-1867 A modified grant of £15 salary to James Doherty from 1 Dec 1866. Books for 40 pupils – sale stock £1:5:0. Visct. Powerscourt Patron listed as correspondent, James Doherty, appointed 1.12.1866, left 19.1.71.
19.2.67 Lord Powerscourt to be patron and manager
26 Apr 1867 Revd Charles McDonagh reappointed manager Denis A ? Christian? principal, appointed 19.6.71, left 15.4.75
10 June 1868 As to teaching of English history and texts of scripture on walls – “no action” Michael B Redmond [appointed 15.5.75, left 11.5.76]
13 Oct 1868 Text of scripture tablets removed from walls
27 Aug 1869 As to neglect of timetable – wait next report, Rev H Galbraith named as manager and correspondent
12 Aug 1870 Re memo – Lord Powerscourt informed that commissioners can have no objection to the employment of the teacher as secretary to the Enniskerry Omnibus Company provided that the duties be performed will not interfere with the discharge of his duties as school master during school hours.
Jan 5 1871 On [board ref] 10368-70 from teacher James Doherty asking to be allowed to return a sewing machine which he purchased under the impression that it would be his private property – manager informed of this request and that the machine was purchased for the school and cannot be removed.
20 Mar 1873 As to religious instruction and accounts – wait
12 Jan 1874 DA Christian admonished and fine threatened for malmanagement in his school accounts
31 Mar 1874 Map of B. Isles to be provided – Senior boys to be instructed in algebra
21 April 1874 Rev H Galbraith AM recognised as manager

As to accounts, wait

9 Feb 1875 DA Christian reprimanded severely for irregularities in school accounts, reminded of admonition of 12.1.74, warned that if again detected tampering with his school accounts he will be declared ineligible for service in any NS
22 Feb 1875 Manager informed that having referred his letter relative to admonition to teacher of 13/11. The commissioners see no reason for further enquiry – while the commissioners consider Mr Christian’s conduct deserving of censure, they do not mean to imply that there was in it, anything dishonest of fraudulent.
28 Jan 1876 Name of school changed to Powerscourt
24 Feb 1879 Vacations excessive


James Doherty1.12.66 – 19.1.71

Denis A Christian 19.6.71 – 15.4.75

Michael B Redmond 15.5.75 – 11.5.76

S Jackson, Principal, 25.9.76 to 25.11.76

W Marshall, Principal, 27.11.76 to 23.12.76

James Sweetman, 1.1.77 to 31.12.78

Wm Pattison 1.1.79

At bottom, “Application L34/88 – School removed from Mod. Grant list and reopened as an ordinary school from 1.1.88 – see folio 83 also”.

ED2/151 – Folio 34

States that school became connected with board on 8th June 1869 [must have taken down incorrectly, see ED2/157, Folio 4], it’s non-vested, Lord Powerscourt is the original applicant, Rev H Galbraith is the correspondent.

Date Notes
15 Jul 1879 Rev EH Whelan ?recognized manager ?pro term?

Manager listed as Rev H Galbraith, William Pattison is principal teacher

1880 Re correspondence 17/11/79 – Rules — all satisfactorily – Wm Pattison’s conditional classification not confirmed

Correspondence 19.8.80 – classification of Wm Pattison (I2) confirmed from date of his appointment 1.1.79.

1882 Wm Pattison is ineligible for admission to this year’s examination as a candidate for promotion as school owing to average daily attendance and small number of pupils in senior class does not rank as a 1st class school.

ED2/157 – Folio 83

Date Note
17 July 1890 Manager informed that time devoted to needlework is insufficient to warrant commissioners in recognising Miss Cole as workmistress
23 Jan 1894 Miss Magt Pattison appointed workmistress from 1st Jan 1894.
26 Oct 1895 Manager informed that as the monitor Jane Hanan is considerably over the prescribed age (16 years) her appointment from 1st July 1895 cannot be confirmed.
9 Nov 1895 Decision of commissioners already advises in case of Jane Hanan cannot be departed from
14 Feb 1896 Manager to direct the teacher to amend his timetable so as to provide for the instruction of every girl enrolled in second and higher classes for at least one hour daily as required by rule 9.
13 April 1896 Mrs Fannie Flinn recognised as competent for the position of workmistress.
11 April 1896 Exemption from alternative scheme for 6th class girls granted for ‘current’ results year
25 Jan 1899 Rev GN Smith recognised as pro-term manager furing the absence of — Galbraith
29 April 1902 Prolonged closing of school for epidemic in portion of December [unreadable] – manager informed that propoer cause will be made in full if manager undertakes to so curtail the vacations as to comply with rule 102 (200 days in operation)

As to appointment of Revd A E Gick? As manager pro term see file 17827, entered under roll no 12710, folio 98.

Rev DE Newcombe recognised as manager on nomination of Lord Powerscourt.

Registration continued in Co Wicklow, Vol I, Folio 62.


  • William Pattison, Principal
  • 1896: Samuel Flinn, Principal; Frances Flinn, Workmistress.

Dargle National School ED/2 Files (Archive Month #12)

ED2/49 – Folio 12

– mentions Dargle School (Roll 982), Parish of Delgany, Townland of Tynehinch in 1816 taken into connexion by the board on 14 Feb 1833.

Name of Teacher:                                                            Correspondent

14 Feb 1834: Miss (Anastasia) Duffy                         James Grattan, Bray

3 June 1841:                                                                       Walter Berrick Esq, Enniskerry

7 April 1846: “Supt. Reports school conducted by temporary teacher owing to illness of A Duffy (M A Pollard is named as temp)

14 Sept 1846: Sup. Reports school has been closed since last inspection substitute having left.

26 Apr 1847: Inspector reports school still closed

Feb 3 1848: refers to letter written from board on this date “Strike off Roll no 982 and cancel grants from 1st June 1846 – school permanently closed”.


See this post for information on Eduction archives in the National Archives of Ireland

About Archive Month

National Board of Education: Index Files (Archive Month #11)

The next several posts will be relating to the archives of schools in the parish and their correspondence with the Board of Education, which was established in 1831. Once schools opted to be “taken into connexion with the board”, there was a range of correspondence with the Commissioners for Education and notes kept by their Inspectors, which makes for very rich local archival data. The index to all of this information is in the National Archives on index cards, and for our local schools is reproduced below. Subsequent posts will provide the details of those archives.

There were several types of records. The two I focussed on were:

  • ED1: Applications for grants. These were applications for grants to be taken into connexion with the Board. They could be used to apply for school buildings, but in all cases relevant to us, school buildings already existed from local endeavours, so applications were usually for funds to pay for teachers and materials
  • ED2: Inspectors Registers. These are fascinating minute books recording any dealings with the school. They detail reports on teachers, school conditions, and so on.
  • (Also ED9: Files relating to individual schools)

Index Card Notes for Schools in Enniskerry locality

Click links where available to go to a transcription of that archive.

Curtlestown Roll #1119

County Wicklow District 40 & 38

Initial Application: 9 Jul 1834 ED1/95 No 18

Further Applications:

12 Apr 1855 ED1/96 No 7

24 Nov 1861 ED1/95 No 108

9 July 1863 ED1/95 No 96

5 Apr 1875 ED1/97 No 52

Register: ED2/49 Folio 23, 62; ED2/165 Folio 15, 64; ED2/151 Folio 18

Also under Cuttlestown (separate card index)

ED9/742, 15186, 19030

Enniskerry No 2 Roll #10177 and #11353

District 40, 38

Initial Application: 17 Mar 1869 ED1/97 No 22 

15 Apr 1878 ED1/98 No 21

Register: ED2/157 No 9; ED2/151 Folio 38; ED2/157 No 87

File No ED9/1754, 11842, 18339

Enniskerry (Powerscourt) Roll #9760

Initial Application: 19 Nov 1866 ED1/97 No 6

Further Application: Indexed in error here in NAI cards – refers to Enniskerry No. 2

Register: ED2/157 Folio No 4; ED2/151 Folio No 34

Other Schools

Dargle School (Roll #982): ED2/49, Folio 12

Annacrevy: ED1/101, Folio 89; ED2/151, Folio 55; ED2/157, Folio 98




Pensioners of Powerscourt 1844 (Archive Month #10)

A few months ago, I posted up some details of workmen’s account books for Powerscourt, held in the National Library Powerscourt collection manuscripts. Another related item is a list of people receiving pensions from Powerscourt (MS 43,038/3). I think this would have been unusual, or at least uncommon, for the time, and is probably another indication that Powerscourt treated his staff reasonably well for the time.

Lord Viscount Powerscourt’s Pensioners for the quarter ending 31st December 1844

Name Address
Yearly Pension Signature
Mary Harney Curtlestown £8 Her mark
Sarah Fox Ballinagee £10 Sarah Fox
Elizabeth Fitzwilliam Drumcondra £7 13s 4d
Paul Murphy Kilmolin £8 His mark
Lucinda Hacket Alms House £8 Her mark
Mary Flood Ballybrew £5 4s Her mark
Margaret Toole Near Kingstown £5 5s Her mark
Bridget McGuirk Glencree £3 5s Her mark
Robert Walsh Coolakey £2 12s His mark
Anne Barnwide? Drumcondra  £6

Total amount payable in last quarter: £15 19s 10d

Correction – The Drumcondra residents didn’t sign – they seem to have been paid a total amount in advance or else will be paid at the end of the year.

Judicial Rent Reviews at Powerscourt (Archive Month #9)

The pencil lead is hardly dry on this latest data collection! I’m interested in the change of ownership of land from Powerscourt to tenants, and have been looking at the Land Commission records. From my limited understanding so far the Land Commission was established in 1881 to effect the voluntary transfer of land from estate owners to tenants. The initial idea seems to be that the land owners would be compensated with some form of bonds, and the tenants, living and working on the land, would borrow to buy the land they farmed. It wasn’t a terribly successful strategy, and a subsequent Act was enforced in 1903 called the Wyndham Land Act, which really seemed to be the death knell of great Irish estates, and this is what I am working on. This Act was much more successful, as it was cash up front, with a 12% bonus on price paid to the landlords to compensate for any discrepancy between what the tenant thought it was worth and what the landlord wanted. Acknowledging my economic naïveté, I consider it a latter day NAMA.

Powerscourt, as ever, is curious though. As part of the Land Commission’s duty, it seems they set judicial rents for what tenants should be paying. Land value hadn’t been set it seems since Griffith, and judicial reviews of rents seemed to set a new precedent, I think for a fixed period of 15 years. In the 19th century Parliamentary Papers, the summaries of these reviews was regularly published. Also published were amounts paid by the government after tenant purchase, which details the tenants involved.

Now here’s the thing – if you are still with me after my long preamble… While there are several judicial reviews for the Wicklow and Wexford estates, the only details of purchasing by tenants are in Wexford. I could find no details of land purchase from 1881 through to 1900 in Wicklow. It seems Powerscourt had no problem selling off his Wexford land, but was obviously not too keen on selling his Wicklow land. Listed below, are the judicial reviews for Wicklow, showing the tenant, area and value paid at the time, along with value after review. Almost all were down-graded in value, except for poor Eliza Burton, who had to pay more.

At the other end of the scale, there is an answer to a parliamentary question in the new Dáil in 1932, which stated that as far as the Government knew, Lord Powerscourt owned 1,845 acres in Wicklow, with a Poor Law value of £1346. The next part of my jigsaw search is finding out what happened in between. It is likely that the old boy hung on until the new Free State government forced his hand in the matter, and that land transfer began en masse in our estate in 1923. This was suggested by Canon Stokes in his Lecture. The remaining land was the subject of additional strife in the 1960s – another story – but at the time Taoiseach Seán Lemass, in response to a Dáil question about whether the government would buy Powerscourt, said that anyone who knew Powerscourt knew it was only mountain bog (referring to the surrounding land).

When I know more – I’ll tell you; if you know more – please tell me!

Judicial Reviews of Land Rent 1881 – 1900, Viscount Powerscourt as Landowner (Wicklow Estates)

Tenant/ Location Area Poor Law Valuation Former Rental Judicial Rental
1886 Lady Laura Grattan, Tinnehinch 34-1-35 £32 £77 35s £45
1889 Peter Whelan, Monastery and Anahaskin 21 £30 £36 10s £34
1889 James Pharr, Ballinastor 46-0-25 £15 5s £25 6s £15 15s by agreement
1890 Edward Somers, Ballinastoe 26-2-10 £24 10 £17 10 £15
1890 Francis Ward, Parknasilloge 22-0-34 £20 £13 £11
1890-91 James Quigley, Cookstown 13-1-14 £14 10s £19 10s £17 10s
1898 Wm A Buckley, Monastery 23-1-0 £21 £25 2s 8d £22 19s
1900 Eliza Burton, Barnamire 129-0-22 £33 15s £25 £31



Planting at the Dargle: Journal of Rural Affairs 1842 (Archive Month #7)

The following article about the potential for planting trees in non-arable land in Ireland appeared in the wonderfully named The Irish Farmer’s and Gardener’s Register and Journal of Rural Affairs in 1842 [Volume I, (pp 199 – 205)]. The Journal is available at the National Library of Ireland.

The article uses Powerscourt as a case-study, and says that trees were:

…planted under out supervision about twelve years since; and although furze, which previously to planting trees had to be uprooted, made powerful efforts to regain possession of the land; it was at length overcome, and at present the surface is covered with luxuriant grasses, ready, whenever the trees have attained sufficient size, to be beyond the reach of injury from cattle, of affording valuable pasturage…

The effect also led to improved scenery:

…The truth of this observation was forcibly impressed on us a few days since, when contrasting the change which the planting of about thirty acres of land had in a few years, produced on the scenery of a formerly uninteresting drive from Bray to the Dargle gate. The site of this plantation, the precipitous banks of the Dargle river, was lately little better than a quagmire, affording only coarse pasturage in summer…


About Archive Month

Maps from Monck Papers at the National Library of Ireland (Archive Month #6)

The Monck papers which, like the previously mentioned Powerscourt papers, have their own index (No. 4 – Part I includes the Wicklow Estate information), have two maps of interest that I came across. Monck’s lived at Charleville, and the two maps mentioned here cover the area around Tinnehinch at the end of the 18th and 19th centuries respectively.

MS 26,949: A map of part of Tinnehinch, county Wicklow, part of the estate of Charles Stanley Monck, later 1st Viscount Monck, and holding of the Rt. Hon. Henry Grattan. Surveyed by Michael Curran. November 1788. 20 perches to 1 inch.

Michael Curran/Currin was obviously the map maker in the area at this time as he made several maps in the locality (see Powerscourt papers maps). This map shows the area east of the road, just past the narrow bridge at Tinnehinch, and the junction west to Roundwood and right to Kilcroney. Details between the road and the river are given. I was interested in this map as I was trying to pin down the building of Grattan’s house at Tinnehinch. The map shows three plots enclosed between the river and the road. The largest, most northerly and running along most of the river is annotated “Part of Lower Tinnehinch, the holdig of Henry Grattan”. The second portion has a house at the road’s edge, past the turn west for Roundwood, and is marked [unreadable]’s garden. No. 3 is a tiny plot, and either is not annotated or I did not take it down. The small remainder of the land is marked Kilcroney (possibly the townland?), and the road continuing east is marked “To Glen of the Downs”.

This map gave me more questions than answers. I wanted to know if Grattan rebuilt the inn that existed at Tinnehinch to make his new home (which seems to be locally accepted, but I haven’t seen evidence) or rebuilt the inn near the site of the old inn (some evidence for this, e.g. in landscape paintings). I go for the latter, but am still looking for the silver bullet to prove it! Let me know if you have an opinion for either option!

MS 26,962 Map of Charleville House, and lands to the north. No title, no map-maker, Lord Monck’s Estate, by John Kenny, 1891. Scale 6 inches to 1 statute mile.

A century later, and this map, which the library index suggests dates from 1890 – 1900 shows the house at Charleville and the lands to the north west, running along the river between Charleville and Powerscourt demesnes. Three large fields are marked. Most southerly, closest to, but not quite at, the house is Fernyfield, which has a track running through it south west to north east, which eventually meets the main avenue; there is a pump at the southern end. moving north along the river, the next plot is Bottoms, which contains “Drumbank”, and some forest or scrub planting. A path, along the northern edge of Bottoms runs east-west from Charleville Gate Lodge across this land, and a foot-bridge, to Powerscourt (to the Golden Gates lodge, which is not marked). The third plot, north of the path, is “Rape Field“, which is bound by the river at the west, north and east, and the mentioned path to the south.

It’s a pretty little map, with the fields coloured pink, green and yellow respectively. Fernyfield and Rape Field look to be similar size, with Bottoms approximately half as big again.


In my haste, I forgot to include additional details from the reverse of the map. The title is Lord Monck’s Estate, by John Kenny, 18th March, 1891. He has added a note: “I have shown the Rape Field as it may be required.” 3acres and 36 perches of the land surveyed are considered woods and waste. The acreage of the three plots are given:

  • Fernyfield: 11A 0R 24P Gross; 10-2-0 Net (of woods and waste)
  • Bottoms and Drumbank: 15-0-38 gross, 12-3-0 net
  • Rapefield: 7-1-14 gross, 7-1-0 net.


About Archive Month

Correspondence with Famine Relief Commission (Archive Month #5)

The Famine Relief Commission papers are held in the National Archives of Ireland. The Relief Commission was set up in November 1845, and local committees were set up from the following February. The Relief papers are arranged according to certain categories – for example the code “RLFC3/2/” refers to “Incoming letters: baronial sub-series” – these act essentially as finding aids. There is now an online search facility on the National Archives website to an index of files. Wicklow correspondence all have “/32” in their code, as we were the 32nd county.    

Searches for files relating to our area resulted in archives in the RLFC3/2, RLFC4: “Parochial constabulary returns” (May ’46) and RLFC5: “Replies to Inspector General of Constabulary’s Circular, 19 August 1846.” categories.

Incoming letters: baronial sub-series


Notification of the appointment of two additional relief committees in the county of Wicklow – Bray and Powerscourt.


Chairman – George Cranfield Esq J.P.

Mr Benjamin Buckley


Dated 13 Feb 1847: Letter from Benjamin Buckley adding Henry Darley Esq of Ballyornan to the list of the Powerscourt Committee.


Dated 26 March 1847: Powerscrout, Enniskerry. Listing the subscriptions received in aid of the poor in Powerscourt Relief Disctrict, and asking for an equal amount, totalling £120 10s 3d. Letter states that “we have an extensive mountain tract included within our district where much poverty and destitution prevails. The number of labourers who have been fed by the Inspectors office is 280 – and we supply upwards of two hundred rations, each consisting of a pint?? of soup and a pound of cooked rice and Indian meal, per … to persons completely destitute. Under the circumstances I …. that we can be met with some favourable consideration.

List of subscribers attached for year 1847

  • Guardians of Viscount Powerscourt        50
  • Viscountess Castlereagh                               20
  • Col Knox                                                              2
  • Sir Ralph Howard Bach                                   10
  • Judge Cramptew?                                           5
  • Sir Philip Cramptew                                         2
  • Robert Sandys Esq                                           5
  • WH Macreedy Esq                                           5
  • Ms? Reeves?                                                     1
  • Rev Joshua Barnard                                        2
  • Rev Thos O’Dwyer                                           2
  • Henry Monck Mason Esq                              2
  • Doctor Gray                                                        10s 3d
  • Doctor Rapole                                                   2
  • Patrick Flood Esq                                              2
  • Captain Cranfield                                             10


Another letter (same reference), Powerscourt April 1847

Requesting an answer to the previous letter as their own funds are now nearly exhausted

Parochial constabulary returns


Parish of Powerscourt, 23 May 1846. Local constabulary nationwide were asked to reply to the following questions in an attempt to get an idea of the extent of the crop failure in 1846.

1. What extent of land was planted with potatoes in above parish in each of the years 1844 and 1845?

2. What proportion of land is planted with potatoes was let in con-acre?

3. What extent of land was planted with potatoes this year 1846?

4. What proportion has been in 1846 let in con-acre?

5. What crops have been sown in the land which would under ordinary circumstances been planted with potatoes?

The answers from local officers are given in the table below. These are discussed in the context of the time in the book.

Parish of Powerscourt Powerscourt – Enniskerry Kilmacanogue
Q1 1844: ~140 acres 

1845: ~140 acres

1844: ~149 acres 

1845: ~159 acres

1844: ~130 acres 

1845: ~137 acres

Q2 None None None
Q3 1846: ~132 acres 1846: ~124 acres 1846: ~101 acres
Q4 None None None
Q5 Turnip and rapeseed Turnip and oats Turnip and oats
Signed Const. Whittaker, Barnamire, 30/5/46 Const. John WinterEnniskerry, 31/5/46 Const. John Winter Enniskerry, 31/5/46

Replies to Inspector General of Constabulary’s Circular, 19 August 1846


Circular from Constabulary Office, Dublin Castle

County inspectors and officers in charge of districts are requested to make inquiries with as much discretion and secrecy as possible, for the purpose of procuring, so far as relates to their respective districts, information on the following points….

D  McGregor, 19th August 1846

  1. Has the extent of potatoes planted this year equalled that of ordinary years?
  2. Has the crop been affected by the blight, and in what proportion?
  3. Has the early or late crop been chiefly injured, and to what extent in each of those crops?
  4. Has the crop, or any portion of it, as yet, become available for food?

Replies from

Baltinglass Blessington Bray
Q1 Yes Yes Not quite but nearly
Q2 At least half Totally blighted Upwards of ¾, no field safe
Q3 Late crop very much injured more so than the early crop Early crop has been chiefly injured, they are quite gone. The late crop has been totally checked in vegetation, but what the people are digging out are quite small, and not half the crop expected Early chiefly rather than more than half
Q4 Some has but of very bad description About ¼ available for food Yes, small proportion remaining uninjured
Date Aug 29th 1846 Aug 27th 1846 Aug 22 1846

Living conditions in Wicklow in 1834 (Archive Month #4)

Following on from a previous post, here is an extract from the previously mentioned Ireland in 1834: a journey throughout Ireland, during the spring, summer, and autumn of 1834, Henry D Inglis, London: Whittaker, 1834. It describes living conditions observed by this writer in Wicklow, but unfortunately no details on what part. It’s interesting to compare this to Fraser’s Statistical Survey of the county in 1801 (and indeed Catherine O’Connell’s experiences in 1844). The Poor Laws came into force in Ireland in 1838.

I found rents in Wicklow such as for the most part could never be paid by the produce of the land and the small farmers as well as labourers barely subsisting. High rent was the universal complaint and the complaint was fully borne out by the wretched manner in which I found the people Catholic and Protestant living. And if the question be put to them why they take land at a rent which they know it will not bear the reply is always the same how were they to live what could they do. From which answer we at once arrive at the truth that competition for land in Ireland is but the outbiddings of desperate circumstances. As for the condition of the labouring classes I found little to bear out the assertions of some of my Dublin friends to whom Wicklow ought to have been familiar that I should find all the labourers employed and all tolerably comfortable.

On one of the afternoons I spent here I walked up a mountain road and after a short walk reached a glen with several cabins scattered in it and three of these I visited. The first I entered was a mud cabin one apartment. It was neither air nor water tight and the floor was extremely damp. The furniture consisted of a small bedstead with very scanty bedding a wooden bench and one iron pot the embers of some furze burnt on the floor and there was neither chimney nor window. The rent of this wretched cabin to which there was not a yard of land was two pounds. The next cabin I entered was situated on the hill side in size and material it was like the other I found in it a woman and her four children. There were two small bedsteads and no furniture excepting a stool a little bench and one pot. Here also were the burnt embers of some furze the only fuel the poor in this neighbourhood can afford to use. The children were all of them in rags and the mother regretted that on that account she could not send them to school. The husband of this woman was a labourer at sixpence per day eighty of which sixpences that is eighty days labour being absorbed in the rent of the cabin which was taken out in labour so that there was little more than fourpence halfpenny per day left for the support of a wife and four children with potatoes at fourpence a stone.

I entered one other cabin it was the most comfortless of the three it was neither air nor water tight and had no bedstead and no furniture excepting a stool and a pot and there were not even the embers of a fire. In this miserable abode there was a decently dressed woman with five children and her husband was also a labourer at sixpence per day. This family had had a pig but it had been taken for rent a few days before. They had hoped to be able to appropriate the whole of the daily sixpence to their support and to pay the rent by means of the pig but the necessities of nature with the high price of potatoes had created an arrear before the pig was old enough to be sold. The landlord might not be to blame he was a very small farmer of hill land at twenty shillings an acre and was just as hard set to live and pay his rent as his humbler dependent was.

A labourer in this county considers himself fortunate in having daily employment at sixpence throughout the year and many are not so fortunate I found some who received only fivepence but there are many who cannot obtain constant employment and these have occasional labour at tenpence or one shilling but this only for a few weeks at a time I found the small farmers living very little more comfortably than the labourers A little buttermilk added to the potatoes made the chief difference.


About Archive Month

Maps from Powerscourt Papers in National Library of Ireland (Archive Month #3)

The National Library of Ireland has an important set of manuscripts relating to Powerscourt and Enniskerry in its Powerscourt Papers collection. There is a general index to the collection, which is available online (Collection List 124 PDF file). Having looked at many of the maps, some more detail from notes made are provided below. As well as being beautiful visual images from the past, these maps often provide detail of where people lived, their names and neighbours names, new plans, etc. I have tried to include any of these details below.

Some really useful information on using manuscript maps in local history is provided by Jacinta Prunty in her book “Maps and Map-Making in Local History” – see the website library for details.

21F 163/22

Map and sections of present and proposed roads from Enniskerry to crossroads at Kilmolin. No other details except Scale: 16 statute perches to an inch.

An absolutely beautiful map showing plans for a road which plans to avoid Kilgarran Hill, by veering right past hospital (Estate Office) and runs along Kilgarran townland through Kilmolin and meeting present road at junction with Glencullen. Enniskerry village shown in detail. Rationale appears to be to avoid steep incline at Kilgarran. Incline is given as 1 in 6 1/2 at steepest on current road and 1 in 17 for proposed road. No date, but town clock is not marked and village schoolhouse present (although not marked). (Some more detail and context for this map given in the book).


  • Reference to Mr Magee’s House – is this Kilgarran House?; it includes a lodge.
  • Tim Quigley and John Buckley named as ?occupiers? south and north of new road in Kilgarran.
  • Mrs Dixon north of Buckley
  • John Buckley and his house and Edward Ward’s House marked
  • Miller’s Hotel marked in village.
  • “Old Hospital – Thomas Basset” marked at proposed junction at end of Kilmolin.

21F 163/43

A map of part of the old roads and new intended road leading from the old road at the upper end of Glencree by Lough Bray to the Road of Shramamuck and Adowne, by Michael Currin. Date: April 1799. Scale: 320 perches/1 mile to an inch.

Details of a new road between Enniskerry and Glencree, which is 4 miles, 19 perches (1299 perches) long. Map shows proposed road from Glencree to ?Sally Gap? at Liffeyhead. It was commissioned by Viscount Powerscourt. There is little local Enniskerry detail; Powerscourt, Charleville and Tinnehinch are marked; roads to Bray by Cookstown and by Kilcroney marked. Hard to say if it is old/new Enniskerry to Glencree road, but probably old road as it ends up below L. Bray. Of interest, given the date, as it precedes the military road.

21F 163/46

Map of part of Ballyman in the Co. of Dublin and Barony of Rathdown – part of the estate of Lord Powerscourt, by Michael Currin, Surveyor, 1792. 5 perches to 1″.

Map shows road from Dargle to Old Connaught, including the walled garden of Mr Mason – “11 1/2 perches plantation measure” – surrounding land to north is James Pluck’s (?) holding.

21F 163/47

Map of part of the land of Lackendarragh 1846 June now in possession of Mr Francis Buckley, no other details.

Map shows holdings either side of road to Enniskerry including holding of Buckley (36 acres 1 rood 9 perches), divided into “Hill” and “Arable”, and the neighbours holdings; on the east side: Thomas Gilbert, bound along the south by a river running west-east; neighbour on the west side: Mrs Mary Keegan. “Plantation” is marked along the northern edge.

21F 163/48

Cookstown. No other details.

Map shows an area of 12-2-20 which looks similar to what was Summerhill in Cookstown. The name associated with it is hard to read – possibly Mr. Z Lord. The holding is marked in detail, including an outline of the house, vegetable garden, pasture, meadow, yard, garden. There appears to be two driveways meeting at a central circle.

21F 163/60

A map of Ballynagee, 1759, Chas Maguire, 40 perches to 1″.

Map showing “Fine arable and pasture” land divided into two lots, one being 102-1-19 and the second being 41-1-5. On the south side is Deerpark to the west and Long Hill due south. Coolikeagh is marked to the east. Along the west is Bahana, marked as “Deacon’s part of Bahana” at the north end and “Booth’s part of Bahana” to the south end. Onagh is marked on the north edge.

21F 163/63

A map of Cuttlestown in the manor of Powerscourt… the holding of Edward Mooney and Partners for Mr Anthony Burton, 1795, Michael Currin.

Map showing a plot of 78 acres on the west side of a road north of Cuttlestown. At the north-east end, Cuttlestown Hill is marked, Annacrevy is due east, along with the name “Mr Wingfield Burton” and to the south east, Cuttlestown, with the name Mr Anthony Burton. On the west side, Barnamire is to the west and south west, to the west the name Mr George Burton is appended, and to the north west is the “Land of Clune”, with the name Mr Gregg Hicks. A short section of road is marked here on the north west corner.

21F 163/64, 65

Design for a new bridge and proposed line of road from near entrance gate to Powerscourt Waterfall leading towards Bahana, 1834.

Architect’s plan for bridge at Waterfall entrance by Henry Thomas Provis (?), Sandymount, Dublin. Bridge is 18ft wide and 60 ft long. Map #65 shows the road plan. Some more details on this in context are in the book.

21F 163/67

Design for two new bridges, July 1847.

“Bridge near waterfall and “Bridge on double stream on upper part of new road”, by John Louch architects (the estate architect). More details on this in the book.

21F 163/68

A map of the lands of Monastery let to the Rev’d Mr McGhee, 1834, 10 perches to 1″.

Map shows Enniskerry bridge and Monastery road and possible village road and Kilgarran Hill. A barley field and pasture are marked on map. An addition, added in 1843 says the land was let to Ben Buckley at £2 per acre. (See this article for more on our friend Mr McGhee).

21F 163/16

A map of gardens at Enniskerry formerly under lease to the Miss Tooles (1850s?) 2 1/2 perches to 1 inch. A component, possibly the Garda barracks and Rosemount, is not included in the lots.

Map shows new road (Forge road) and “street” (Church Hill). Several plots are marked, one belonging to Mrs Shirly. the Courthouse is on the northeastern corner.


No title. A map showing the New Military Road, surveyed by William Duncan, 1802.

The land marked for the new barracks at Glencree has lease value of £3 17s 6 3/4. Map shows Aurora Hutts (sic). A road to Dublin is shown. Map is interesting in the context of Military road history.


No title, but a map of the road from Bray to Enniskerry, running along the Dargle at Cookstown, 1821.

Has several plot numbers and refers to “Powerscourt Estate Grand Map”. Several houses are marked, but only name shown in Widow Clements. The 21 bends road  is obviously not present, but Widow Clements’ land aligns with where this would be, on the Enniskerry side of the Big Tree. “Enniskerry River” marked. Plot numbers are 51, 113, 58, 118, 108, 107, 111, 109. The area is 5-3-9, and an amount is shown, perhaps rental income of £28 19s 9d.


Map concerns lands south of Tinnehinch towards Sugarloaf and west to Giltspur, 1839. Scale 40 perches to 1 inch

Map shows lands divided between Powerscourt, Rathdowne and Sir George Frederick Hodson (1370 acres). Shows entrance to Charleville (house not marked), Tinnehinch bridge marked and  Ballyorney road. Six houses marked along Ballyorney road.


No title. Map showing two plots along “street of Enniskerry to Dublin”, evidently along Church Hill. No date.

Plots are on the west side of street and are labelled “No. 1 The Garden” and “No. 2 The House”. On the south side is marked “Mrs Toole’s holding”, on the west side is “Mrs Toole’s at will” and on the north side “Mr J Buckley”. The house is 63 feet in front. An amount of £23 p.a. is marked, as is the text “Kilgarran containing by survey nine perches of the late plantation measure to the same ——-”


No title. A map showing a parcel of land between Monastery and the Parknasillog, by Chas Maguire, 1759.Scale: 40 perches to 1 inch.

Two pieces of land in a plot: (1) Fine arable and pasture (145-0-16) and (2) Coarse ditto (18-2-16). Bounded on the north east (or at least top right) by “Folliot Patrickson, part on Monastery”, on the east by “Road from Powerscourt to Dublin , with William Harrick’s part of Monastery on the other side of the road, on the south west by Kilgarren, on the west by the river and Parknasillog and on the north west by Killegar.


No title. Townland of Barnamire.

A map showing a plot in Barnamire surrounded by Glancree, Lackendara, Knockbawn, Curtlestown. No names of features marked.

Missing Maps

Unfortunately, several maps are marked as missing. Their titles suggest tantalising detail. They include:

  • 21F 160/13 – Map of church plot near Enniskerry, 1860, by Brassington and Gale. 50 ft to 1 inch.
  • 21f 160/14 – Map of part of Coookstown in the County of Wicklow, laid out in villa lots, 8 perches to one inch.
  • 21F 163/15 – Holding of late Mrs Dickson at Enniskerry, 2 perches to one inch.
  • 21F 163/16 – Lands at Toneygarrow in lots.
  • 21F 163/18 – Map of Rev T O’Dwyer’s holding in Enniskerry, church plot included. 100′ to 1″.
  • 21F 163/110 – Mrs Crooke’s right of way, 8 perches to one inch.
  • 21F 163/111 – Mrs Murray’s Demesne, 1873, 5 perches to one inch.

Postscript: The National Library are introducing a digital search facility for its Longfield Index (an index of many maps) which will have images incorporated. I can’t remember off hand if there were any maps of our area included, but it will be a useful resource nonetheless.


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