Britain 09 - Day 4
We ate a good Irish breakfast at the hotel then headed east through Kinvarra and turned south through Ennis. We stopped at the old cathedral at Kilmacduagh, one of many ruined churches in Ireland. From there we headed towards Tulla. This was the location that Martin Moroney left in 1881 and headed to Sydney for a new life. His great-grandaughters were now back looking to reconnect with this history. The census records had indicated the Moroney family lived at Tyredagh Upper, a few kilometres north of Tulla, so we headed there. We decided to stay at a local farm-based B&B as this might give us insights into the local history - which indeed it did. We were introduced to Jacky Moroney, who talked about his family and took us around his local farm.
On the road from Ballyvaughan to Tulla we passed Kilmacduagh. This is a remarkably well preserved ruin, and worth the time to look around. It is a good example of a tall round tower (off centre) and the high quality of masonry that went into these old buildings.
Tulla, the "town on the hill" is built on the top of a small but steep hill, with the ruins of a large cathedral and cemetery occupying the very top. We entered the cemetery to look for Moroney headstones, and very quickly found one for Michael and his wife Margaret from Tyredagh Upper. This was a good start. There were a few more Moroney names, but this headstone was the one we were after. Now we needed to know more about this family.
Maghera Cross and Tyredagh Upper
From Tulla we drove north to Maghera Cross. This is the closest church to Tyredagh Upper, but it was built in the early 20th Century, long after Martin Moroney had departed.
My idea that the locals at the Hillview B&B might be able to help with local Moroney families drew a quick response - "We had Jacky Moroney visiting here with us last night - I'll give him a ring and get him back". And sure enough, when we came back from dinner there he was. Yes, he had lived in Tyredagh Upper all of his life, but had moved off his farm, which was short drive over the hill. The Moroney grave in Tulla was of his parents (Michael and Margaret) and he was very pleased that we had visited it. But, he knew nothing of his grandparents, who would have been about the right age to have been siblings or cousins of our Martin Moroney.
So off we went to visit his farm, where he found photos of his daughters. A lovely photo of his mother had pride of place on the kitchen wall.
Last updated: 16/06/2017