BALTEAGH, or BALLYDAIGH, a parish

From A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837

BALTEAGH, or BALLYDAIGH, a parish, in the barony of KENAUGHT, county of LONDONDERRY, and province of ULSTER, 2 miles (S. E.) from Newtownlimavady; containing 3326 inhabitants. This parish, which is situated on the Balteagh water and bounded on the west by the river Roe, is intersected by the roads leading respectively from Dungiven and Garvagh to Newtownlimavady, and by the road from Coleraine to Londonderry. It comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 11,505 ¾ statute acres, and, except a small portion belonging to the see of Derry, is the property of the Marquess of Waterford, being part of the grant made by James I. to the Haberdashers' Company, of London, who have long since alienated it in perpetuity. About one-fourth part of the land forms a portion of the mountains of Cedy and Donaldshill, which latter is the highest ground in the parish, and, according to the Ordnance survey, has an elevation of 1315 feet above the sea at low water. Much of the mountainous land affords excellent pasture for cattle, and might easily be reclaimed; and the remainder, extending from the bases of these mountains towards the river Roe, is rich and fertile, and in a good state of cultivation, producing abundant crops. In the front of the Cedy mountain is a large quarry of white limestone, which is there topped by the lofty mountains of basalt extending on the east to Coleraine, on the south-east to Garvagh, and on the northeast to Magilligan. In the bed of the Balteagh water, .freestone, calcareous sand-stone, and thin layers of coal are found alternating. The principal seats are Ballyquin House, the residence of Capt. Tedlie, and Drumagoscar, of the Rev. R. Henderson. The weaving of linen is carried on in some of the farm-houses; and there are a flour and two oatmeal-mills, and two flax-rnills in the parish.

The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Derry, and in the patronage of the Bishop: the tithes amount to £373. 18. 6. The church, a small edifice with a square tower crowned with pinnacles, was erected in 1815, on a site near the ruins of the old church at the base of Donaldshill, at an expense of £700, a gift from the late Board of First Fruits, which also granted a loan of £277 for its repair in 1828. The glebe-house, situated about a quarter of a mile to the north of it, is a good residence; the glebe comprises 135a. 0r. 33p., lying on both sides of the Balteagh, water. In the R. C. divisions this parish forms part of the union or district of Newtownlimavady, and contains a chapel. There is a place of worship at Lislane for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster, of the second class. The parochial schools are at Ardmore: there are other schools at Terrydrummond and Carrick, aided by the rector and W.Campbell, Esq.; and the Marquess of Waterford is about to establish schools at Lisbane and Drumsurn. The number of children at present taught in these schools is, on the average, 250, of which about one-third are girls: there are also four Sunday schools (one of which is held in the Presbyterian meeting-house), and a private school in which about 30 children are educated. There are remains of an extensive cromlech; and the walls of the ancient church form an interesting ruin. There are sulphureous and chalybeate springs in several parts of the parish. Numerous fossils are imbedded in the limestone of Cedy, particularly belemnites, trilobites, and dendrites.

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