Queenstown, Cork

Queenstown extends for a considerable distance along the northern coast of the harbor, and from its fine situation and the mildness of its climate ranks high among the southern watering-places. Queen Victoria landed here on August 3, 1849, of which she has written as follows: "To give the people the satisfaction of calling the place 'Queenstown,' in honor of its being the first spot on which I set foot upon Irish ground, I stepped on shore amidst the roar of cannon and the enthusiastic shouts of the people."

We visited many banks at various towns during our trip, and were courteously received by the managers. The Irish banks are managed on the branch system, Belfast and Dublin being the headquarters for the parent corporations. Belfast for the most part takes care of the northern part of the island, and Dublin the southern. These institutions are very prosperous and are conservatively managed by intelligent men. Banks are established in all towns of any importance, and where the population is large they usually number half a dozen.

At Queenstown we went on board the Cunard steamer Etruria, on Sunday morning, bound for New York. The company's popular agent, Mr. E. Dean, obtained the captain's cabin for me on the upper deck, and in many other ways "killed me with kindness." On looking back I find that my highest expectations of the trip were all fulfilled, and I have nothing but pleasant memories in connection with it. There were, of course, some bad moments, and for that matter, bad days; but they are all forgotten in the recollection of the kindly Irish people and the interesting land in which they live. I cannot recall a single cross word or hard look given me by any one during the entire trip, excepting in the Derry Customs, and that doesn't count. We traveled over three hundred and fifty miles on jaunting-cars, making use of twenty-three of them. We traversed the counties of Donegal, Leitrim, Sligo, Mayo, and Clare, and used some ten different boats and steamers in completing our journey.

To the readers of this very imperfect sketch I would say that should they ever think of following in our footsteps, they should fully consider the drawbacks and inconveniences incident to the journey before deciding to start. They will meet with wet days, some cheerless, damp hotels, and sometimes poor cooking; they will probably not be able to get on as quickly or conveniently as I did, for I was born in Ireland and know the ways of the country and its people. But if they have in them the innate desire to see some of the finest natural scenery in the world, and by all odds the greatest display of verdure in all its varying shades and colors, then perhaps they may risk the many disappointing conditions that must be overcome if they would see Ireland at its best.

"Immortal little island! no other land or clime

Has placed more deathless heroes in the Pantheon of Time."


Read "On an Irish Jaunting Car through Donegal and Connemara" at your leisure

On an Irish jaunting Car through Donegal and Connemara

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Samuel Gamble Bayne was born in Ramelton, County Donegal, and educated at Queen's University in Belfast. At the age of twenty-five he left for America with a view to making his fortune. He invested in an oil well in Pennsylvania and later founded a bank which subsequently came to be the JP Morgan Chase bank in New York. By the time this book was written he was wealthy enough to be referred to as a billionaire. His account of the tour through the north, west and south of Ireland is a pleasant snapshot of how that part of the country was in the early part of the 20th century. He describes what is to be seen, gives some background history and, through the illustrations especially, provides wonderful glimpses of the area's social history.

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