All Lewis entries for Monkstown


More information on Samuel Lewis' Topographical Dictionary of Ireland (1837)
Accompanying Lewis map for Cork


MONKSTOWN, a parish, in the barony of KERRYCURRIHY, county of CORK, and province of MUNSTER, on the new line of road from Passage to Cork, and on the western shore of the river Lee, at its confluence with the sea in Cork harbour ; containing, with part of the post-town of Passage-West, 2199 inhabitants, of which number, 698 are in the village of Monkstown. It derives its name from a small establishment of Benedictine monks, called Legan abbey, belonging to the priory of St. John's, Waterford, which was formed here in the fourteenth century, on a grant of land made to the original establishment by the family of McCarthy, being part of their manor of Marmullane ; of the buildings there are no traces. A house in the Elizabethan style was built on the side of a glen, in 1636, by Eustace Gould, called Monkstown castle: it is a gloomy struc-ture, and was once rented by the government for barracks, but it is now used as a store-house by the proprietor, or lessee under Lords Longford and De Vesci, who, by the marriage of two heiresses, became possessed of this property, which had been forfeited by the Archdeacons, or Goulds, from their attachment to the cause of Jas. IL. in the revolution of 1688. The parish is bounded on the east and south-east by the Lee and the harbour of Cove ; it comprises 1546 statute acres, of which about 100 are scattered woodland and ornamental grounds, 60 rock, and the remainder arable and pasture ; the annual value is about £1500. The land is moderately well cultivated, though at a great expense, and the soil being fertile is productive of good crops of corn and grass. The rocks are of clay-slate, and, near Carrigmahon, are precipitous and interesting ; the steepest is called the Giant's Stairs, being a rocky promontory with receding ledges of rock, having the appearance of a rude staircase when viewed from the opposite bank of the Lee. There are several quarries of a red and brown stone, useful for many purposes, the former being chiefly used for lining limekilns. The river Lee affords every facility for water carriage, and here is excellent anchorage for vessels of all sizes. The village, which has a penny post to Cork, comprises a great number of detached villas and cottages, many being new and very handsome, particularly twelve beautiful marine villas recently built close to the shore ; they are constructed in the pure Elizabethan style, and are chiefly occupied by respectable families as bathing-lodges, for which purpose the village is most favourably situated. It is built on the sides of a deep glen, which is thickly clothed with beautiful and thriving plantations, much increasing the natural beauty of the scene: the prospect is very extensive, taking in the woods of Ballybricken, Rostellan, and Prospect ; the islands of Hawlbowling, the Rock, and Spike, with their numerous forts, depots, arsenals, and magazines ; Ringskiddy, crowned by its martello tower ; and the numerous vessels in the harbour. Among the elegant residences scattered over the parish are Monkstown Castle, that of R. B. Shaw, Esq. ; Rock Lodge, of J. Galwey, Esq. ; Carrigmahon, of De Courcy O'Grady, Esq. ; Rockville, of J. Taylor, Esq. ; Bellevue, of N. S. Parker, Esq. ; and the glebe-house, of the Rev. Alex. Stuart, besides several very beautiful houses in the portion of the town of Passage that is in the parish, which, by means of the new road, has become one place with Passage. This road was designed by Robert Shaw, Esq. ; it winds round the base of all the bold and wooded hills, only a few feet above the level of the highest tides, uniting Cork, Douglas, Passage, Monkstown, Carrigaline, and Kinsale: the estimated cost was £2700, one-third of which was to be paid by the barony, the remainder by the county.

The living is a vicarage, in the diocese of Cork and in the patronage of Lord De Vesci: the income of the vicar is £50 per ann., payable out of the estate of Monkstown, and secured by the two noble proprietors. The glebe-house, with three acres of land, formerly the residence of Mich. Westropp, Esq., is held by lease for ever from Robt. B. Shaw, Esq., at £25 per ann., derivable from Primate Boulter's augmentation fund. The church, which stands on a picturesque elevation, is a cruciform edifice in the early English style, with a tower and spire, 70 feet high, at the east end: it was built of hewn limestone, in 1832, at an expense of £950, raised by subscriptions from the patrons and others ; S. Hollingsworth, Esq., contributed £350, and the noble proprietors of the estate £100. It contains a line organ and gallery: the west window is of stained glass, exhibiting the armorial bearings of the principal subscribers. The bell has on it this inscription: "Monkstown Protestant church, erected by voluntary contributions, collected in Ireland and England by Gerrard Callaghan, Esq., M. P. for Cork, and the Rev. A. G. H. Hollingsworth. The first Protestant church erected since the Reformation. Lord Longford and Lord De Vesci gave the endowment ; Gerrard Callaghan, Esq., M. P. for Cork, first commenced the subscription, and gave the ground for the church ; Robert Shaw, Esq., of Monkstown, gave the glebe in perpetuity. A. G. H. Hollingsworth, the first Protestant incumbent ; William Hill, of Cork, architect. The church completed March, 1832. Robert Shaw and Wm. Andrews, churchwardens." In the R. C. divisions the parish is annexed to West Passage and part of Carrigaline, the parishioners attending the chapel at Shanbally. The parochial and infants' schools are in Passage ; they were founded by subscription in 1836, on land presented by W. Parker, Esq., to be held so long as they shall continue scriptural schools: the parochial school-house is very handsome, and will accommodate about 250 children ; it is open to all children of Monkstown and Passage, and is supported by subscription. Besides these there are three private schools, in which are about 60 children. A parochial library has been established for the use of the poor, and an Indigent Room-Keepers' Society has been formed ; both are supported by subscriptions. There is a bequest of £10 per ann., made by Mrs. Andrews, to the church, to commence after the decease of her husband. Within the demesne of Monkstown Castle, on the side of the glen, are the ruins of a small chapel, which was the last retreat of a few monks from the abbey of St. Mary, Bath: it was subsequently repaired and appropriated by the Archdeacon family, as a domestic chapel. Numerous Danish forts, or raths, are scattered over the parish ; and on an elevated situation a circle of very large stones, partly sunk in the earth, and placed upright, are supposed to be the remains of a druidical altar. Crystals of Irish diamond, very clear and transparent, are occasionally found here ; and there is a chalybeate spring.


PASSAGE (WEST), a sea-port and post-town, partly in the parish of MONKSTOWN, and partly in that of MARMULLANE, barony of KERRYCURRIHY, county of CORK, and province of MUNSTER, 5? miles (E. S. E.) from Cork, and 131? (S. W. by S.) from Dublin, on the western shore of the estuary of the Lee ; containing 2131 inhabitants. The period of the extension and improvement of Passage, which is not even mentioned in Smith's History of Cork, is uncertain ; the cause, however, is sufficiently obvious in its excellent and sheltered situation, just at the termination of the deep harbour ; in its great salubrity ; and in its being the only direct communication between Cork and Cove, to each of which places it has a sub-post-office, It owes much of its importance to W. Parker, Esq. ; but this spirited gentleman having engaged in foreign speculations, and for a time removed to the Cape of Good Hope, the improvements remained Stationary, until a few years since, when further improvements were effected under the active exertions of Thos. Parsons Boland, Esq., proprietor of the western portion of the town, and Messrs. Brown and Co. : so that to the fostering care of these gentlemen, from an inconsiderable village, Passage has become a considerable mercantile town, much frequented during the summer for the fine air and sea-bathing. The town comprises one principal street, nearly a mile long, extending along the shore, and intersected by several smaller streets and lanes, which are mostly in a very dirty state, It contains 311 houses, of which 165 are in the parish of Monkstown, and the remainder in that of Marmullane ; the parish church of Marmullane, a Wesleyan Methodist meeting-house, and a R. C. chapel, erected in 1832, a commodious and handsome building ; two schools, and a dispensary. Petty sessions are held every Friday, and it is a constabulary police station. Its salubrity is attested by the longevity of the inhabitants : it is said to be no uncommon circumstance that people of 80 years of age are in rude health and earning their livelihood by labour ; few have suffered during the visitation of contagious diseases ; and, out of a large population, during the prevalence of cholera, in 1832, only 60, and those very aged and infirm, were afflicted. A large dry dock has just been constructed by Mr. Brown, by which it is expected that the trade, which principally consists in ship-building, will increase considerably ; much employment is afforded to the labouring classes by the discharging of the cargoes of all large vessels bound for Cork, the river up to Cork not being navigable for those above 400 or 500 tons' burden. The ferry to Great Island and Cove is at the eastern extremity of the town, and the thoroughfare during the summer months is very great : the want of a steam-boat to transport passengers and carriages having been much felt, the St. George's Steam-Packet Company have lately built a very elegant pier, under the direction of G. R. Pain, Esq., of Cork, where their own packets can lie alongside in all weathers and discharge their passengers or cargoes at all times, even during the lowest ebb tide ; and, at the quays adjoining the dry dock, the largest ships can lie or anchor in the channel in 20 fathoms of water. Connected with this dock is a ship-building establishment, where two or three vessels are always on the stocks, furnishing employment to a great number of men. Near the Ferry point is a rope-walk, with suitable buildings and machinery. Since the establishment of this dock and ship-yard, several spirited merchants of Cork have become shipowners, and now carry on an extensive trade in their own vessels, which, before, was principally done by strange ships. Spring tides rise 16 feet at the quay.

The intercourse between this place and Cove is kept up by the ferry ; on the other side is an excellent level road all the way to Cove, a distance of two miles. A new and excellent line of road has been lately completed around the precipitous shores of the bay, leading to Monkstown, Many boats were formerly employed here in fishing, which has nearly ceased, being engrossed by the men of Cove, whence the inhabitants of Passage obtain their principal supply. Upwards of 100 covered cars, called jingles, are engaged almost daily in the communication between Passage and Cork ; they carry four inside, and the charge is only 2s. 6d. for the entire vehicle, or in proportion for single passengers. Steam-boats sail and return several times daily, and several small boats constantly pass and repass. A fund has been established here for the support, or assistance, of poor room-keepers, whose rent is paid, and who receive coal, potatoes, &c., during the winter : it is liberally supported by voluntary subscriptions among the resident gentry.-See MARMULLANE and MONKSTOWN,

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