AHINAGH, or AGHINAGH, a parish

From A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837

AHINAGH, or AGHINAGH, a parish, in the barony of EAST MUSKERRY, county of CORK, and province of MUNSTER, 4 miles (S. E.) from Macroom; containing 2442 inhabitants. This parish, anciently called Omai, contains the village of Carrigadrohid, which has a penny post, and through which the mail coach from Cork to Tralee passes. It comprises 9080 statute acres, as applotted under the tithe act, and valued at £5321 per annum: the land is generally good and is well sheltered, particularly towards its southern boundary; about four-fifths are under a good system of cultivation; the remainder is rough pasture and bog. There are stone quarries, which are worked only for building. The river Lee is crossed at the village of Carrigadrohid by an old bridge, built by order of Cromwell, which connects the parish with the pretty modern village of Killinardrish. The banks of the river are here adorned with several elegant houses. Oakgrove, the residence of John Bowen, Esq., is a handsome modern mansion, situated in a richly ornamented demesne containing some of the finest oaks in the county. Coolalta, the residence of W. Furlong, Esq., M. D., is a pretty villa in the midst of some picturesque ground tastefully planted; and contiguous to the church is the glebe-house, a handsome edifice, the residence of the Rev. S. Gerrard Fairtlough.

Besides the oak woods of Oakgrove, there are flourishing plantations of young timber at Carrigadrohid and Umery, the former of which is very extensive. The living is a rectory and vicarage, in the diocese of Cloyne, and in the patronage of the Bishop: the tithes amount to £738. 3. 11. The church is a small plain edifice with a square tower, erected in 1791, for which the late Board of First Fruits gave £500. The glebe-house was built in 1814, by a gift of £100 and a loan of £1500 from the same Board: the glebe comprises 24 acres. In the R. C. divisions one-half of this parish is comprised within the union or district of Aghabologue, which has a chapel at Rusheen, and the other is united to Macroom, for which there is a chapel at Caum: it is also in contemplation to erect a third chapel, by subscription, on ground given by Mr. Bowen. The parochial school for boys and girls is supported by contributions from resident gentlemen, and a neat building has been erected as a school-house: there are also an infants' school, a Sunday school, and a private pay school.

The principal remains of antiquity are the ruined castles of Carrigadrohid and Mashanaglass; the former, according to some writers, built by a branch of the Macarthy family, and by others ascribed to the family of O'Leary: it is a massive structure, situated on a rock in the river Lee, with some modern additions, including an entrance opened from the bridge. The owner of the lands of Carrigadrohid has a patent for a fair, which is now held in a field in the parish of Cannaway. The castle of Mashanaglass is a lofty square tower of gloomy aspect, built by the Mac Swineys. Smith, in his history of Cork, mentions a letter addressed by Jas. I. to the Lord-deputy Sydney, directing him to accept the surrender of the lands of Owen Mac Swiney, otherwise "Hoggy of Mashanaglass." A little to the north of this ruin is Glen Laum, "the crooked glen," now called Umery, through which the mail coach road is carried: it is enclosed by precipitous rocky heights covered with valuable plantations, the property of Sir Thomas Deane, Knt., of Dundanion Castle, near Cork. On the glebe are the remains of a cromlech; and several single stones, called "Gollanes," are standing in the parish. Raths or Danish forts are numerous, and there are several artificial caves.

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