Kilcommon Erris Civil Parish and the Incidence of the Gahagan (Goaghan, Goghan, Gaughan, Geoghegan) Surname in Griffith's Valuation

Kilcommon-Erris falls in Erris Barony and has 161 Townlands if you include the named occupied islands that are listed in Griffith's Valuation. The Civil Parish map of County Mayo shows two Kilcommon Civil Parishes, one in Erris Barony (this one) and one in Kilmaine Barony. Kilcommon Erris is a really large Civil Parish with a rugged coastline, mountainous section and supposedly large amounts of bog area (these weren't documented in Griffith's Valuation as they have been in other Civil Parishes I have examined).

When the Griffith's Valuation was conducted for Kilcommon-Erris Civil Parish in 1855, there were numerous Roman Catholic Churches scattered throughout the parish. Roman Catholic Chapels were found in the Townlands of Aghoos, Ballybeg, Belmullet (in the Town of Belmullet), Bunnahowen, Curraunboy and Tallagh. There were Irish Church Mission Society Churches in the Townlands of Bangor, Castlehill, Kilcommon or Pollatomish and a Church of undocumented affiliation in the Townland of Belmullet. Wesleyan Methodist Chapels were present in the Townlands of Belmullet (Town of Belmullet on Ballyglass Street) and Rosdoagh. Graveyards were present in the Townlands of Fahy, Kilcommon (or Pollatomish) and Kilteany and there was a burying ground in the Townland of Bunnahowen.

Kilcommon-Erris Civil Parish is quite large and is covered by four Roman Catholic Parishes: Kilcommon-Erris, Belmullet, Kiltane and Ballycroy. The Catholic Church records for these parishes are present on microfilm number 1279205. I have also noted that there is a film on Ballycroy, County Mayo Ireland families (with Civil Registration births) covering the years 1856-1880 on microfilm number 1145946 (item 8). Gweesalia and Bangor Augoose are more obsolete names that I have heard associated with Kilcommon-Erris Civil Parish.

The Town of Belmullet (within the Townland of Belmullet) is a larger Town that is the primary hub of government and economic activity for Kilcommon-Erris Civil Parish. I have created a specific page on Belmullet in my County Mayo Market Towns section that has some additional details on this Town. Belmullet housed the Revenue Police Barracks, a Pound, Constabulary Force Barracks, the Grand Jury of County Mayo Courthouse, Bridewell, Stores, a Dispensary, and a Forge. The Townland of Bangor had a Revenue Police Barrack as well as a Forge and a "Fair Green." (Griffith, 1847-1864; 2003, Kilcommon-Erris).

I couldn't find any patent applications for fairs for Bangor or any other Townlands in this Civil Parish, but fairs were held in spite of this. According to Samuel Lewis in his "A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland," fairs were held in the Town of Belmullet and fairs for cattle, sheep, Pigs and yarn are held at Bangor. (Lewis, 1837; 1984, p. 66). I didn't see any listings for these fairs in the Statistical Survey of County Mayo that was conducted in 1802.

Kilcommon Civil Parish had numerous Shooting Lodges noted in Griffith's Valuation in the Townlands of Altnabrocky, Bellacorick, Bellaveeny, Gortleatilla and Srahnamanragh. The Townland of Ballybeg had a Tuck Mill, Bellacorick had a Constabulary Force Barracks as did Gortleatilla and Knockmoyleen, Carrownaglogh had a Board of Customs Watch and Boathouse, and two Fish and Salt Stores, Salmon Fisheries were present in the Townlands of Goolamore and Tullaghan Bay, Kilgalligan had a Boat House and Station House, Lagduff Beg had a Revenue Police Barracks, Lenarevagh and a pound, Muingnahalloona had a Farmhouse, Porturlin had a Boat House and Watch House and Tullaghanbaun had a Board of Customs Watchhouse. Herd's Houses were present in the Townlands of Atticonaun, Bangor, Bellagarvaun, Briska, Bunnahowen, Castlehill, Doolough, Doona, Drumsleed, Fahy, Glenturk Beg, Largan More, Lettera, Muingmore, Owenglass, Roy, Sheean, Srah, Srahnakilly and Tarsaghaun More. The large number of Herd's Houses would seem to indicate a significant amount of pasture/grazing area in this Civil Parish. (Griffith, 1847-1864; 2003, Kilcommon-Erris). I found it interesting how many Constabulary Force Barracks were present in this more remote parish. Why did they see a need for them here?

As far as education goes, National Schoolhouses are present in the Townlands of Attavally, Bunalty, Town of Belmullet, Inver, and Sheskin and the Board of Education has National Schoolhouses in Carrowteige, Drumgollagh, Kilcommon, Srahnamanragh and Tallagh. The Griffith's Valuation for this Civil Parish also shows the Irish Church Mission Society having schoolhouses in Bangor, Carrownaglogh, Castlehill, Town of Belmullet on William Street, and Gortmellia. The Achill Mission has a schoolhouse on the Island of Inishbiggle and there is a Church Education Society Schoolhouse in Kilcommon (Pollatomish).

Many different Landlords were documented in Kilcommon Civil Parish when the Griffith's Valuation was conducted, but William Henry Carter (in chancery), Henry Bingham (in chancery), George Clive, Rep Alick Ritchey and the Trustee's of Achill Mission were a few of the more prevalent landlords noted.

I was able to find most of the above-mentioned landlords in Hussey Deburgh's Compilation "The Landowners of Ireland." An 1878 publication that documents the landlords of Ireland holding more than 500 acres or having land valued at more than 500 pounds. I couldn't find a specific listing for William Henry Carter (listed as In Chancery in the Griffith's Valuation), but there was a Henry Tilson Shean Carter that resided in Belmullet, County Mayo (this area) who held 40, 698 acres in County Mayo. I am uncertain if this is the same Carter or just a coincidental location. Henry Bingham (also listed in Chancery) held 2,311 acres in County Mayo. His residence was listed as London. George Clive had Ballycroy, County Mayo listed among his residences. He held 35,229 acres in County Mayo and 4,869 acres in County Tipperary. The Trustees of Achill Mission held 19,155 acres in County Mayo. Rep Alick Ritchey who dominated only 7 Townlands in Kilcommon-Erris was not listed in this resource. (De Burgh, 1878; 2007, p. 2,34,74,86).

The population of Kilcommon-Erris Barony plummeted during the peak famine years. There were 17,000 people in this Civil Parish in 1841, dropping to 12,253 in 1851. This drop of almost 5000 in those 10 years leveled off and by the year 1911 there were 12,266. (O'Hara, 1982, p.7). Most Civil Parish populations in County Mayo seemed to continue their decline in this period after the peak of the famine.

When the Griffith's Valuation was conducted in 1855 for Kilcommon-Erris there was a very heavy concentration of Gaughans present in 19 different Townlands including: Alt, Carrowkeel, Belmullet, Cloontakilla, Corclogh, Derrynameel, Glencastle, Bunawillin, Doohooma, Doolough, Dooyork, Inver, Loughnahelly, Muingmore, Roy, Toorglass, Tullaghanbaun and Tristia. Of these Townlands, the largest numbers of Gaughans held parcels in the Townlands of Tullaghanbaun, Toorglass, Derrynameel, Doohooma, Doolough and Belmullet. The Surname Variation Goughan was present in the Townlands of Cloontakilla and Gortmore and Goghans were present in Gortbrack South.

There is one caveat to keep in mind when looking at these findings from the Griffith's Valuation: The Griffith's Valuation only includes the individuals (occupiers) who own, lease or rent a parcel. For instance it will list a householder but not the individuals who live with him. It was common in County Mayo for individuals to share parcels, particularly of land (The Rundale system of communal land sharing). Sometimes the whole town shared one parcel of land. Shared parcels may or may not be with related individuals. Just because an individual is a lone occupier of a parcel does not mean that he is living in (house) or tilling (garden) this parcel alone. He may have numerous family members living with him, but they will not be listed unless they actually lease or own the parcel. Occupiers who sublet their acreage of land or houses to others will be listed as landlords.

For helpful details on how to interpret the following records, please take a look at the page I created on "Deciphering Griffith's Valuation."

Townland Map Reference Number Occupier Landlord or his Rep Property Type Area in Acres, Roods and Perches -a-r-p Total Valuation in Pounds, Shillings and Pence Shared with (other occupiers)
Alt 4a Gaughan, Michael Atkinson, Mathew House and Land 2-0-26 0-5-0 none
Belmullet 21c Gaughan, Catherine Reilly, John Senior House and Small Garden   0-5-0 none
Belmullet 37 Gaughan, John Rose, Arthur Land 2-2-17 1-5-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-9 Gaughan, Mary (widow) Murphy, George House   0-10-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-36 Gaughan, James Casey, James House, Office and Garden 0-0-29 1-5-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-45 ? Gaughan, Malachy Ruins and Garden 0-0-11 0-2-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-46 Garner, Peter Gaughan, Malachy House   0-10-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-47 Gaughan, Malachy Carter, William H. (in chancery) Garden 0-0-11 0-2-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-48 Grimes, John Gaughan, Malachy House and Garden 0-0-11 0-18-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-51 Barrett, Michael Gaughan, Malachy House and Garden 0-0-11 0-12-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-52 O'Malley, Ellen (widow) Gaughan, Malachy House and Garden 0-0-11 1-2-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-53 Williams, Patrick Gaughan, Malachy House and Garden 0-0-11 1-2-0 none
Belmullet (Town of Belmullet) Barrack Street 45-55 Gaughan, John Sweeney, Patrick House and Garden 0-0-7 0-16-0 none
Bunawillin 1a Gaughan, Austin Carter, William H. (in chancery) House and Land 111-0-5 2-5-0 James, Austin Junior, Peter Gaughan and 5 others
Bunawillin 1c Gaughan, James Carter, William H. (in chancery) House and Land same 3-1-0 Austin, Austin Junior, Peter Gaughan and 5 others
Bunawillin 1f Gaughan, Austin Junior Carter, William H. (in chancery) House and Land same 2-0-0 Austin, Peter, James Gaughan and 5 others
Bunawillin 1g Gaughan, Peter Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land same 4-3-0 Austin, Austin Junior, James Gaughan and 5 others
Bunawillin 2b Gaughan, James Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land 160-2-26 2-3-0 Patrick, Patrick Junior, Bryan Gaughan and 6 others
Bunawillin 2d Gaughan, Patrick Junior Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land same 2-3-0 James, Patrick, Bryan Gaughan and 6 others
Bunawillin 2g Gaughan, Patrick Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land same 4-18-0 James, Patrick Junior, Bryan Gaughan and 6 others
Bunawillin 2i Gaughan, Bryan Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land same 2-1-0 James, Patrick, Patrick Gaughan Junior and 6 others
Carrowkeel 2 Gaughan, James Atkinson, Mathew Land 178-1-17 0-15-0 2 others
Cloontakilla 18a Gaughan, John Short, Isabella House and Land 93-0-22 2-10-0 none
Cloontakilla 19b Gaughan, Anne Short, Isabella House and Land 23-1-2 2-0-0 1 other
Cloontakilla 20 Gaughan, Nancy Short, Isabella Land 303-2-4 0-5-0 Francis, John Gaughan and 16 others
Cloontakilla 20 Gaughan, Francis Short, Isabella Land same 0-4-0 Nancy, John Gaughan and 16 others
Cloontakilla 20 Gaughan, John Short, Isabella Land same 0-2-0 Nancy, Francis Gaughan and 16 others
Corclogh 9a Gaughan, Malachy Carter, William H. (in chancery) House and Land 8-2-23 3-5-0 none
Derrycorrib 1a Gaughan, Timothy Atkinson, Mathew House and Land 10-3-5 0-18-0 none
Derrycorrib 12b Gaughan, Edmund Atkinson, Mathew House   0-3-0 none
Derrycorrib 22a Gaughan, Patrick Atkinson, Mathew House and Land 10-0-14 3-0-0 none
Derrynameel 20 Gaughan, Patrick Atkinson, Mathew Land 13-2-25 0-8-0 none
Doohooma 1g Gaughan, James Senior Bingham, Anne House and Land 332-2-9 5-0-0 12 other Gaughans and 17 others (see Gaughans with shared area 332-2-9)
Doohooma 1h Gaughan, Bridget Bingham, Anne House and Land same 3-8-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1j Gaughan, Jacky (Smith) Bingham, Anne House and Land same 0-12-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1m Gaughan, James Junior Bingham, Anne House and Land same 0-11-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1n Gaughan, Thomas Bingham, Anne House and Land same 1-6-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1r Gaughan, Henry Bingham, Anne House and Land same 1-15-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1u Gaughan, Anthony Senior Bingham, Anne House and Land same 1-6-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1v Gaughan, Anthony Junior Bingham, Anne House and Land same 1-5-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Dohooma 1w Gaughan, Henry (Smith) Bingham, Anne House, Forge and Land same 1-0-0 10 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1x Gaughan, Lackey (Butcher) Bingham, Anne House and Land same 1-5-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1y Gaughan, Thomas Bingham, Anne House and Land same 1-13-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1z Gaughan, Mary Bingham, Anne House and Land same 0-18-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1c2 Gaughan, Patrick Bingham, Anne House and Land same 0-9-0 12 other Gaughans plus 17 others
Doohooma 1e2 Gaughan, Lackey (Junior) Bingham, Anne House - 0-3-0 none
Doohooma 2b Gaughan, Harry Bingham, Anne House and Land 526-2-30 2-4-0 6 Gaughans plus 22 others (see Gaughans with shared area 526-2-30)
Doohooma 2 Gaughan, John Bingham, Anne Land same 1-0-0 6 Gaughans plus 22 others
Doohooma 2 Gaughan, Harry (Smith) Bingham, Anne Land same 0-9-0 6 Gaughans plus 22 others
Doohooma 2 Gaughan, Roger Bingham, Anne Land same 0-9-0 6 Gaughans plus 22 others
Doohooma 2h Gaughan, Anthony Bingham, Anne House and Land same 1-8-0 6 Gaughans plus 22 others
Doohooma 2k Gaughan, Patrick (Dick) Bingham, Anne House and Land same 3-3-0 6 Gaughans plus 22 others
Doohooma 2 Gaughan, Richard Bingham, Anne Land same 3-10-0 6 Gaughans plus 22 others
Doolough 1 Gaughan, Richard Bingham, Arthur Land 103-1-33 0-3-0 Thomas Gaughan and 15 others
Doolough 1 Gaughan, Thomas Bingham, Arthur Land same 0-4-0 Richard Gaughan and 15 others
Doolough 2b Gaughan, Richard Bingham, Arthur House and Land 41-1-6? 0-18-0 10 others
Doolough 3a Gaughan, Thomas Bingham, Arthur House and Land 35-1-37 0-16-0 3 others
Doolough 8j Gaughan, Lackey Bingham, Arthur House and Land 204-1-15 1-10-0 Michael Gaughan and 19 others
Doolough 8k Gaughan, Michael Bingham, Arthur House and Land same 1-6-0 Lackey Gaughan and 19 others
Doolough 10 Gaughan, Daniel Bingham, Arthur Land 29-0-33 0-17-0 4 others
Doolough 11b Gaughan, Daniel Bingham, Arthur Houe and Land 24-3-26 0-12-0 Patrick Junior, Thomas Gaughan and 3 others
Doolough 12c Gaughan, Patrick Junior Bingham, Arthur House and Land same 0-11-0 Daniel, Thomas Gaughan and 3 others
Doolough 12e Gaughan, Thomas Bingham, Arthur House and Land same 1-2-0 Daniel, Patrick Gaughan Junior and 3 others
Doolough 15 Gaughan, Daniel Bingham, Arthur Land 99-1-2 0-1-0 Patrick, Thomas Gaughan and 9 others
Doolough 15 Gaughan, Daniel Bingham, Arthur Land same 0-1-0 Patrick, Thomas Gaughan and 9 others
Doolough 15 Gaughan, Patrick Bingham, Arthur Land same 0-1-0 Daniel, Thomas Gaughan and 9 others
Doolough 15 Gaughan, Thomas Bingham, Arthur Land same 0-3-0 Daniel, Patrick Gaughan and 9 others
Doolough 18 Gaughan, Patrick Bingham, Arthur Land 1-1-12 0-3-0 none
Doolough 20a Gaughan, Edmond The Minors Cormick (in chancery) House and Land 483-3-33 11-0-0 none
Dooyork 1a2 Gaughan, Anthony The Minors Cormick (in chancery) House, Office and Land 1078-1-11 3-15-0 Bridget Gaughan plus the whole town but 1 (the LL)
Dooyork 1g2 Gaughan, Bridget The Minors Cormick (in chancery) House and Land same 1-8-0 Anthony Gaughan plus the whole town minus 1 (the LL)
Glencastle 17a Gaughan, James Atkinson, Mathew House, Office and Land 104-3-22 4-0-0 none
Glencastle 17b Early, James Gaughan, James House and Small Garden   0-5-0 none
Inver 7f Gaughan, Patrick Blake, Isidore Peter House and Land 73-1-33 0-10-0 11 others
Loughnahelly 1 Gaughan, Peter Carter, William H (in chancery) Land 281-2-17 1-14-0 3 others
Muingmore 4c Gaughan, Patrick Bingham, Henry House and Land 299-1-18 0-16-0 Thomas Gaughan and 5 others
Muingmore 4g Gaughan, Thomas Bingham, Henry House and Land same 1-5-0 Patrick Gaughan and 5 others
Islands in the Sea (#14) 1 Gaughan, Patrick Senior Carter, William H (in chancery) Land 0-1-24 - none
Roy 6j Gaughan, Patrick Bellingham, Benjamin House and Land 26-2-30 0-18-0 9 others
Roy 6k Gaughan, John Bellingham, Benjamin House - 0-3-0 none
Toorglass 3d Gaughan, Patrick Crampton, John House and Land 43-2-26 1-17-0 Malachy Gaughan and 5 others
Toorglass 3 Gaughan, Malachy Crampton, John Land same 1-9-0 Patrick Gaughan and 5 others
Toorglass 7c Gaughan, John Carter, Wm. H Carter (in Chancery) and Jas Minaghan House and Land 51-1-0 1-18-0 2 others
Toorglass 8c Gaughan, Patrick Minaghan, Thomas House and Land 49-1-24 4-14-0 12 others
Toorglass 10a Gaughan, Martin Crampton, John House and Land 44-0-36 2-13-0 5 others
Toorglass 10e Murphy, Anthony Gaughan, Martin and Barrett, Edward House and Land same 1-2-0 Martin Gaughan and 5 others
Tullaghanbaun 6a Gaughan, Roger Carter, William H. (in chancery) House and Land 12-0-19 1-5-0 one other
Tullaghanbaun 10a Gaughan, Richard Carter, William H (in chancery) Office, Land 8-0-37 2-5-0 none
Tullaghanbaun 11b Gaughan, Richard Carter, William H (in chancery) House   0-4-0 none
Tullaghanbaun 14a Gaughan, Martin Carter, William H (in chancery) House and land 12-0-20 1-12-0 one other
Tullaghanbaun 18 Gaughan, Anthony Carter, William H (in chancery) Land 7-1-31 2-0-0 none
Tullaghanbaun 19a Gaughan, Anthony Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land 8-1-9 1-7-0 one other
Tullaghanbaun 20a Gaughan, John Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land 7-2-1 0-18-0 Edmond and Anthony Gaughan
Tullaghanbaun 20b Gaughan, Edmond Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land same 0-18-0 John and Anthony Gaughan
Tullaghanbaun 20c Gaughan, Anthony Carter, William H (in chancery) House and Land same 0-18-0 John and Edmond Gaughan
Tullaghanbaun 28 Gaughan, Roger Carter, William H (in chancery) Land 200-2-24 0-1-0 Gaughans plus 25 others (see Gaughans with shared area 200-2-24)
Tullaghanbaun 28 Gaughan, Richard Carter, William H (in chancery) Land same 0-2-0 Gaughans plus 25 others)
Tullaghanbaun 28 Gaughan, Martin Carter, William H (in chancery) Land Same 0-1-0 Gaughans plus 25 others
Tullaghanbaun 28 Gaughan, Anthony Carter, William H (in chancery) Land same 0-3-0 Gaughans plus 25 others)
Tullaghanbaun 28 Gaughan, John Carter, William H (in chancery) Land same 0-1-0 Gaughans plus 25 others
Tullaghanbaun 28 Gaughan, Edward Carter, William H (in chancery) Land same 0-1-0 Gaughans plus 25 others
Tristia 6c Gaughan, John Bingham, Henry House and Land 287-1-10 2-12-0 6 others
Gortbrack South 2a Goghan, Hugh Richey, Reps Alick Office and Land 147-2-5 3-18-0 2 others
Gortbrack South 3b Goghan, Hugh Richey, Reps Alick House and Land 381-0-7 3-0-0 3 others
Cloontakilla 2c Goughan, Michael Short, Isabella House and Land 48-2-2 1-7-0 2 others
Cloontakilla 4 Goughan, Francis Short, Isabella Land 8-3-17 1-0-0 1 other
Cloontakilla 5b Goughan, Francis Short, Isabella House and Land 37-1-33 4-3-0 2 others
Cloontakilla 8a Carolan, Anne Goughan, Anne House and Land 1-0-23 0-8-0 none
Gortmore 2f,h Goughan, Edward Bingham, Arthur House and land 377-2-3 5-8-0 5 others

(Griffith, 1847-1864; 2003, Kilcommon-Erris).