Kilbeagh Civil Parish and the Incidence of the Gahagan (Goaghan, Goghan, Gaughan, Geoghegan) Surname in Griffith's Valuation, County Mayo, Ireland

There were no individuals with the Gahagan, Goaghan, Goghan, Gaughan or Geoghegan Surname documented in Kilbeagh Civil Parish when Griffith's Valuation was conducted in 1856. I have almost completed the Kilbeagh Microfilm 1279230 and have found no Gahagan, Goaggan, Goghan, Gaughan, Geoghegan or Goggin Records thus far in the church records either. I am going over item one (the early years) again because I was not documenting the Gahagan surname and its variations until I was almost done with item one. I did not include the 5 Townlands of Calveagh Lower and Upper, Currinah, Derrynanaff and Gortanure that were later transferred to County Roscommon, in this compilation but there were no Gahagan Surnames (or variations) in the Griffith's Valuation for these Townlands either. I have almost completed the Kilbeagh Microfilm 1279230 and have found no Gahagan, Goaggan, Goghan, Gaughan, Geoghegan or Goggin Records thus far in the church records either. I am going over item one (the early years) again because I was not documenting the Gahagan surname and its variations until I was almost done with item one. There were tons of Gavahan family records however throughout all items of this microfilm.

Kilbeagh Civil Parish falls within Costello Barony and had 69 Townlands when the Griffith's Valuation was conducted in 1856 if you exclude the 5 Townlands that were transferred to County Roscommon in 1898. Two different Roman Catholic Parishes cover Kilbeagh Civil Parish, Carrowcastle (closer to Sligo) (that was formed in 1847) and Charlestown (that was formed in 1845). (Mitchell, 1988. p. 88). The Catholic Church records for Carrowcastle are covered on microfilm number 1279233 and 926004 and cover the years 1847-1908. This parish was part of Kilbeagh Catholic Parish at one point. The Catholic Church records for Charlestown Roman Catholic Parish are covered on microfilm number 1279230 and 926009 and cover the years 1845-1880 and 1845-1924 respectively. When the Griffith's Valuation was conducted for Kilbeagh Civil Parish there were Roman Catholic Chapels in the Townlands of Cashelduff and Temple. Graveyards were noted in the Townlands of Cashelduff, Cloonfane, Temple and Tonnagh and there was a Burial Ground in the Townland of Srah Lower.

I couldn't find any specific patent applications for Fairs for any of the Townlands in Kilbeagh Civil Parish. When the Griffith's Valuation was conducted in 1856, the Townland of Lowpark had a documented "Fair Green," but there were no parcels with the "Tolls and Customs of Fairs." (Griffith, 1847-1864; 2003, Kilbeagh). The Town of Newtowndillon (Bellaghy or Tulrahan) is mentioned in the "General Alphabetical Index to the Townlands and Towns, Parishes and Baronies of Ireland" as being part of Kilbeagh Civil Parish. I was unable to find this Town documented in the Valuation, but there is a listing for a patent being obtained for this Townland in 1767 by Luke Dillon for a market and four fairs. Apparently the fairs disappeared by 1830's but the market continued to take place. (Gillespie; Crawford, 1987, p. 89).

The Town of Charlestown is incorporated into two different Townlands in Kilbeagh Civil Parish: Lavy Beg and Lowpark. The Townlands of Lavy Beg and Low Park share a small border in their northernmost section of the parish. It is my understanding that the development of the Town of Charlestown was initiated by the Dillons in response to the Town of Bellaghy being developed by the Knox Family. Numerous Villages or Towns are listed under the Townland of Derrynabrock (easternmost part of the parish) in the Griffith's Valuation: Derrygerraun, Rivertown, Shanbally, Duffy's Village and Finn's Village. Economic activity appears to be distributed throughout Kilbeagh Civil Parish. The Townland of Ballyglass East has a Corn Mill, Tuck Mill and Farmhouse, Barnacahoge has a Corn Mill, Forge and Plantation, Carrowntober has Corn and Tuck Mills, Cartron has a Corn Mill, Killaturly has a Corn Mill, Finn's Village within the Townland of Derrynabrock has a Corn Mill, Lowpark has a Pound, Sonnagh has a Corn Mill, Tawnyinah Middle, Tawnyinah Upper and Tonnagh have Plantations and Temple has a Corn Mill. Herd's Houses were documented in the Townlands of Cloonmore, Killeen, Knockbrack or Trouthill, Lowpark and Stripe. This is the first Civil Parish where I have seen land specified as "Meadow" as in Glenmullynaha West. (Griffith, 1847-1864; 2003, Kilbeagh).

Numerous "Bog" parcels were noted in the Griffith's Valuation, but there were no lakes or rivers documented. Samuel Lewis noted that there were "very large tracts of bog and mountain" in Kilbeagh Civil Parish. (Lewis, 1984, 1984, p. 50).

As far as education goes, Board of Education National Schoolhouses were documented in the Townlands of Barnacahoge (in the western most part of the Civil Parish), Cloonfane (more centrally located) and Lowpark (Northwestern part of the parish). There also was a Schoolhouse in the Townland of Roosky, located in the eastern part of Kilbeagh Civil Parish.

Viscount Dillon was far and away the most prevalent Landlord in Kilbeagh Civil Parish followed by John Sadlier and more distantly by Jane Elizabeth Pugh and an assortment of others. (Griffith, 1847-1864; 2003, Kilbeagh). I referred to the Hussey De Burgh compilation "The Landowners of Ireland" that listed the landlords of Ireland that held over 500 acres or property valued at over 500 pounds in 1878, for information on the primary landlords of Kilbeagh Civil Parish. Viscount Dillon (Theolbald Dominick Geoffrey Dillon-Lee, 14th Viscount) had residences at Loughglynn House, Castlerea, County Roscommon as well as in England. He held 83,749 acres in County Mayo, 5,435 in County Roscommon and 136 acres in County Westmeath. I couldn't find any listings in this resource for John Sadlier. Jane Elizabeth Pugh was documented as living in County Sligo and held 621 acres. (De Burgh, 1878; 2007, p. 129, 376).

A portion of Costello Barony was transferred to County Roscommon in 1898. There are five Townlands that are listed apart from Kilbeagh in the Griffith's Valuation in a section entitled "Kilbeagh Part of," they are Calveagh Upper, Calveagh Lower, Currinah, Derrynanaff and Gortanure (these five Townlands were transferred to County Roscommon in a Government Act that took place in 1898).

I read an interesting story in the book "A Various Country, Essays in Mayo History 1500-1900". An essay by Desmond McCabe described an incident that involved the Townland of Cloonmore in Kilbeagh Civil Parish. Apparently law enforcement was trying to impose a bankruptcy "decree" on a Thomas Phillips who was a Landlord in Cloonmore in 1843. The decree was foiled when about 300 of his tenants rose up and took a stand against the sheriff with "Pitchforks, reaping hooks and large bludgeons." (Gillespie; McCabe, 1987, p. 112). John Sadlier was the only Landlord in Cloonmore when the Griffith's Valuation took place in 1856.

Kilbeagh Civil Parish saw a relatively small population decline during the peak famine years going from 9,963 in 1841 to 9,733 in 1851 in contrast to other Civil Parishes in County Mayo. (O'hara, 1982, p. 7). The numbers actually increased in the next three decades (that was relatively uncommon in the other County Mayo Civil Parishes in this period).