BALLYNAKILL, a parish

From A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837

BALLYNAKILL, a parish, in the barony of BALLYNAHINCH, county of GALWAY, and province of CONNAUGHT, 4 miles (N.) from Clifden; containing 7183 inhabitants. This parish is situated on the bay of the same name on the western coast, and comprehends within its limits Claggin bay, and one side of Killery harbour, with the islands of Ilane-a-green or Crump, Innisbruin, Bradilan, and Freachillan; it comprises 5142 statute acres, as applotted under the tithe act. The male inhabitants are principally employed in agriculture, and occasionally in the herring fishery; and the females in spinning woollen yarn and knitting stockings. During the famine that prevailed on this part of the coast in 1831, the inhabitants of this parish were reduced to the greatest distress, and 1500 families must have perished but for the prompt relief afforded. At Derry-Inver, within the bay of Ballynakill, a small pier has been erected by Government, which has proved very useful for trade and the fisheries, and has contributed much to the improvement of the surrounding district.

The entrance to Claggin bay is easy, the ground clean and good, and the shelter tolerable, with depth of water sufficient for any ship. On the south side the Board of Fisheries has constructed a small pier opposite to the anchorage ground, which has been found to be very beneficial. The living is a rectory and vicarage, in the diocese of Tuam, with the rectories and vicarages of Omey or Umma, Moyrus, and Ballindoon, and the six vicarages of Ennisboffin, Killanin, Arranmore, Arranbeg, Ennismain, and Ennishere, episcopally united in 1667, forming altogether the union of Ballynakill, in the patronage of the Bishop: the tithes amount to £64. 12. 3 ¾., and of the whole union to £270. 6. 11 ¾. The church of the union is situated in the parish of Omey, and was built by aid of a gift of £600 from the late Board of First Fruits, in 1812. The glebe-house was built by aid of a gift of £337 and a loan of £75 from the same Board, in 1816: the glebe, which is also situated in the parish of Omey, comprises 40 acres.

In the R. C. divisions this parish is the head of a union or district, comprising also Ennisboffin, and containing three chapels, situated respectively at Ballynakill, Coilmore, and Ennisboffin; and in this parish divine service is also performed at a house in Tully. There is a school at Tully under the Tuam Diocesan and the Dublin Ladies' Irish Societies, in which 13 boys and 7 girls are instructed; and there are three pay schools, situated respectively at Tully, Ballynakill, and Rossroe, in which are about 80 children.

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