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Timeline for the parishes of Kilrea & Tamlaght O'Crilly, 1800–1809.

Please refer to Notes and References at bottom of page.
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"General disease was now induced, partly by the unfortunate civil war of 1798, which caused a vast destruction of grain and all the necessaries of life, by neglect of industry, and immense destruction of property, that its effects were felt in dearth, famine, and disease, for two years after the rebellion. The year 1799 was designated "the hard summer," by the lower classes, so difficult was it for them to procure food. The harvest of 1800 failed in every part of Europe, and the scarcity and wide-spread distress was greatly aggravated in this country, and in England, by the waste of the war with France, causes which pressed heavily on the Irish, who were badly prepared for such an event, after the recent disturbances: hence fever raged among them to a great extent, especially in those districts which had been the seats of insurrection."
   As most of the battles, during the Rising of 1798, were fought in counties Dublin, Wexford, Kildare, Mayo, and Meath, these visitations of disease and dearth may not have affected the north of Ireland, except for parts of the county Down where there had been skirmishes, nearly as much as in the southern provinces.
Ryan (1832), pg. 399.
early 1800s "The trade of the town and district [of Kilrea] was in agricultural produce and linen weaving chiefly, and the Bann being navigable, merchandise was conveyed in vessels of fifty or sixty tons from Belfast and other towns. … The eel fishery at Portna was worth from £500 to £700 a year, and in the best month, October, as many as 30,000 were caught in a single night." Kernohan (1912), pg. 46.

Link to an amusing story about a boy, angling for pike on the bank of the river Bann.
early 1800s There was a parish school at Moyletra Church, which was attended by Presbyterians. Kernohan (1912), pg. 67. This was noted in the chapter about Boveedy Presbyterian congregation.
The fairs held in the village of Tamlaght (also known as Churchtown) came to an end, as "the drunken and quarrelsome disposition of the inhabitants" discouraged buyers from attending.
Ordnance Survey Memoirs.
The ancient church in Kilrea was burnt accidentally, and "rebuilt at the expense of the parishioners." Before it was burnt, the church was "roofed with shingles and the interior fitted up with solid black oak."
Ordnance Survey Memoirs.
Archaeology Survey of Northern Ireland (NIEA).
The Boveedy Reformant Presbyterian Moral Society was established. "It met monthly in Samuel Warwick's house to study the Bible and other religious books."
Account of Boveedy, written by James McIlfatrick; cited in The Fairy Thorn Revisited (1996), pg. 128.

Note: The Ordnance Survey Memoirs refer to this group as the Bovedy Covenanting Religious Society.
The lease of the townlands of Drumargarner and Castleroe, held under the See of Derry, were put up for sale, on the death of the proprietor, Rowley Heyland, Esq. Belfast News-Letter, 27 May 1800.
Link to transcription. The advert was repeated several times during the ensuing months.
Retailers of spirituous liquors, in the barony of Loughinsholin, were required to attend the Quarter Sessions of the Peace at Magherafelt, in order to obtain Certificates to entitle them to Licenses for the Year commending the 29th September. Belfast News-Letter, 27 June 1800.
Link to transcription.
A Mare was stolen, or strayed, off the lands of Hugh M'Laughlin, of Lisnagrot, parish of Tamlaght O'Crilly. A reward of Two Guineas was offered for the return of the horse, and no questions asked, or Four Guineas for Horse and Thief.
Belfast News-Letter, 5 September 1800.
Link to transcription.
The Act of Union (1800) forged the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The Irish Parliament was shut down; the number of Irish members was reduced; and, from this date until 1920, Irish affairs were governed from Westminster.
Belfast News-Letter, 2 January 1801.
Link to transcription.
  Robert Slade, Secretary to The Irish Society, undertook a private journey to the North of Ireland. He made a report of his observations to the Society in London. Mr. Slade's remarks touched on absentee landlordism; the poverty, ignorance, and laziness of the "lower order," who toil for a miserable subsistence; the prevalence of begging; the density of population; &c.
  The Rev. G.V. Sampson, rector of Aghanloo, conducted a three-year study of the county of Londonderry, including a region which he denominated, "Half Valley of the Bann." In his observations of the landscape, Rev. Mr. Sampson waxed lyrical about certain picturesque spots, while lamenting other places as "bleak and unvaried," suffering from a constant sameness of "bog, rock, and rusty soil," and a dearth of trees to provide picturesque relief.
Link to transcription of observations made by Robert Slade re the parish of Kilrea.

Link to transcription of observations made by the Rev. G.V. Sampson, including agricultural practices, prices and state of labour, the types of provisions available from market, habitation and fuel of the lower rank, rack-rents, houses of small farmers and cottiers, absentee and resident proprietors, manners and customs of the people, employment of females, domestic economy, turns of phrase, beliefs, wedding customs, and, dialects and language.
The rents were, on average, twenty-two shillings an acre.
Kernohan (1912), pg. 45.
Mr. John Henderson, the assistant manager of the Mercers' estate, was appointed Seneschal of the Manor of Mercers. The Manor Courts sat for the recovery of debts.
Kernohan (1912), pg. 47.
Death of Father O'Regan, of Tamlaght O'Crilly, after which, "Tamlaght O'Crilly became a separate parish known as Greenlough."
  Research by Mrs Kathleen Gillen; cited in The Fairy Thorn (1984), pg. 83.
In his account of Brian Carrach O'Neill at the Royal Irish Academy in 1859, the Rev. Dr. Reeves also described the Green Lough.
Link to transcription.

Father John Diamond was the parish priest of Tamlaght O'Crilly and Drumagarner.
Parish of Greenlough (2006).
(1) Riot in Kilrea: On a fair day, a "mob calling themselves Freemasons assembled in a very tumultuous manner, armed with large sticks or quarter poles, and offering every provocation, called for any Orangeman or Protestant. Some Orangemen suffered the affront without retaliation, until being attacked severely they were obliged to find refuge in a house, from which the assailants were driven off only after recourse to firearms, and when two men were killed and several badly wounded. The originators of the outrage were from [the Vow, in] Co. Antrim."
(2)  "On 7 June 1802 a substantial crowd gathered in Kilrea to attend the local fair. The day passed quietly, and by late afternoon the vast majority of the participants had returned to their homes. Things changed dramatically at about six o’clock, when an unruly party of Freemasons appeared in the center of town. A number of the masons shouldered large sticks, moving through Kilrea challenging the fifteen to twenty Orangemen who remained at the fair. Led by the master of their Vow Lodge, the Freemasons attacked the outnumbered Orangemen, beating them handily and forcing them to take refuge in a house. The crowd continued to assault the house, shattering several windows with large stones. Surrounded by their foes, the Orangemen fired into the crowd, killing two and wounding several others. The overpowered Catholic attackers fled the battlefield, leaving the Orangemen alone to celebrate their victory."
(1) Kernohan (1912), pg. 47.
(2) Farrell (2000), pg. 54.
(3) Belfast News-Letter, 15 June 1802.
Link to transcription.

The PRONI holds a letter, written by George Macartney, of Antrim, to the Earl of Antrim, at Lissanoure, dated 8th July 1802, in which he gives "an account of the meeting of the magistrates owing to the riot at Kilrea;" per the online catalogue, www.proni.gov.uk (accessed 2015-01-20).
The bleachgreen, established by John McKinney, jun. at Moneygran in 1793, ceased operation.
The Fairy Thorn (1984), pg. 23.
A flaxmill replaced the bleach green established at Moneygran in the late 1700s.
The Fairy Thorn (1984), pg. 10.
The Ordnance Survey Memoirs cite the year, 1817.
The Rev. Odley [or, Audley] Fanning built the Glebe House of Termoneeny, parish of Tamlaght O'Crilly, on the summit of a high hill, on the Ballymcpeake road from Kilrea to Bellaghy.
Ordnance Survey Memoirs.
The Rev. John Waddy was the Protestant rector of Kilrea.
Ordnance Survey Memoirs.
The Rev. James Jones was the Incumbent of the parish of Tamlaght O'Crilly (Church of Ireland). Rev. Mr. Jones was assisted by a Curate, and there was a Chapel of Ease at Ennisrush.
Carlisle (1810).
Drumane Private school was established in the parish of Tamlaght O'Crilly; 3 Established Church and 2 Presbyterian pupils.
The Fairy Thorn Revisited (1996), pg. 76.
John Church, Esq., renewed the lease--initially set by Rowley Heyland--to Drumagarner chapel.
Ordnance Survey Memoirs.
The Bridge Street school was established in Kilrea; 23 Presbyterian and 23 Roman Catholic pupils.
The Fairy Thorn Revisited (1996), pg. 75.
Letter to the editor of The Belfast Monthly Magazine:
  "If you deem the following trifle worthy of a place in your miscellany, your insertion of it will much oblige your very humble servant, M’K.

"Glances from Derry to Gracehill. ...
  "I left Garvagh, and withou seeing any thing worthy of remark, in about two hours arrived in Kilrea; much has been written on the effect of contrast—more said on the power the imagination has over the judgment: the first of these causes certainly transformed Garvagh into paradise, in my eyes; and is it possible that the last made Kilrea appear to me a poor, small village, lonely and ruinous? though “no grass waved in its courts, nor fox looked out at the windows,” yet poor-looking is the village of Kilrea, and silence reigns through its streets: it stands about half a mile from the peaceful undulating waters of the Bann, which is here about 80 yards wide. From this to Grace-hill (about ten miles) the country is mostly hilly, and often did I sit down to rest my wearied limbs; yet, thank heaven, every situation hath its charms, for in those moments of rest I sometimes was delighted with the most picturesque landscapes: now the lonely Bann unfolded its unrippled bosom to my eyes, and again some intervening hillock concealed it from my view; here, a large and interesting view of part of the county of Derry presented itself to me, and there, a long tract of the county of Antrim lay before me."
The Belfast Monthly Magazine, Vol. III, July-August, 1809.

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  • "Agricultural Report from the Barony of Loughinsholin" (August, 1815). The Farmer's Magazine, Vol. XVI. Edinburgh: David Willison, 1815.
  • Day, Angélique, and Patrick McWilliams, eds. Ordnance Survey Memoirs of Ireland. Vol. XVIII. Parishes of County Londonderry V, 1830, 1833, 1836-7. Maghera and Tamlaght O'Crilly. Belfast: The Institute of Irish Studies, The Queen's University of Belfast, in association with The Royal Irish Academy, Dublin, 1993.
  • Day, Angélique, and Patrick McWilliams, eds. Ordnance Survey Memoirs of Ireland. Vol. XXVII. Parishes of County Londonderry VIII, 1830, 1833-7, 1839. East Londonderry. Belfast: The Institute of Irish Studies, The Queen's University of Belfast, in association with The Royal Irish Academy, Dublin, 1994.
  • Carlisle, Nicholas. A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland. London: William Miller, 1810.
  • Farrell, Sean. Rituals and Riots: Sectarian Violence and Political Culture in Ulster, 1784-1886. Kentucky, USA: The University of Kentucky Press, 2000.
  • "Glances from Derry to Gracehill," letter to the Editor; in, The Belfast Monthly Magazine, Vol. III, July-August, 1809. Belfast: Smyth & Lyons, 1810.
  • Kilrea Local History Group. The Fairy Thorn: Gleanings and Glimpses of Old Kilrea; published by The Kilrea Local History Group. Coleraine: Impact Printing, 1984.
  • Kilrea Local History Group. The Fairy Thorn Revisited: More Gleanings and Glimpses of Old Kilrea, published by The Kilrea Local History Group. Coleraine, and Ballycastle, 1996.
  • Kernohan, J.W. The Parishes of Kilrea and Tamlaght O'Crilly: A Sketch of Their History, With an Account of Boveedy Congregation. Coleraine: Chronicle Office, 1912. Transcribed by Barbara Braswell and Richard Torrens; posted to Richard Torrens' Bann Valley Genealogy web site, www.torrens.org.uk/Genealogy/Bann Valley/
  • Ryan, Michael, ed. "Principal Epidemic Diseases of Ireland." The London Medical and Surgical Journal, Vol. I. London: Renshaw and Rush, 1832.
  • Sagart, Art. P. O'Raghallaigh. The Parish of Greenlough/Tamlaght O'Crilly: A Brief History (pub. 2006). Online at www.69thpa.co.uk/tamlaghtpdf.pdf (accessed 2015-01-17).
  • Sampson, G. Vaughan. Statistical Survey of the County of Londonderry. Dublin: Graisberry and Campbell, 1802.
  • Slade, Robert. A Concise View of the Origin, Constitution and Proceedings of the Honorable Society of the Governor and Assistants of London, of the New Plantation in Ulster, Within the Realm of Ireland, commonly called the Irish Society. London: Gye and Balne, for The Irish Society, 1822.
© Alison Kilpatrick 2015