GRAIG

From A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837

GRAIG, or GRAIGNAMANAGH, a market and post-town, and a parish, in the barony of GOWRAN, county of KILKENNY, and province of LEINSTER, 6 miles (S.) from Goresbridge (to which it has a sub-post-office), and 58 (S. S. W.) from Dublin, on the road from Carlow to New Ross; containing 4745 inhabitants, of which number, 2130 are in the town. William Marshal, the elder, Earl of Pembroke, founded an abbey here for Cistertian monks in 1212, the abbot of which was a lord of parliament until the Reformation, when it was granted to Sir E. Butler, and is now the property of Viscount Clifden: there are considerable remains of the building. The town contains 417 houses, and is improving in appearance; it has a handsome bridge over the Barrow, on which river it has between 40 and 50 boats of about 40 tons' burden each. Markets are held on Monday and Thursday in a market-house built by Lord Clifden; and fairs on Jan. 27th, March 4th, April 7th, May 11th, June 11th, Oct. 28th, and Nov. 26th. In or near the town are a brewery and malthouse, and a flour and three grist-mills. Petty sessions and a manorial court are held occasionally, and it is a constabulary police station, and has a dispensary.

The parish comprises 11,879 statute acres: there is a considerable quantity of mountain land, including Brandon Hill, and Lord Clifden has planted 300 or 400 acres. Brandon dale, the residence of D. Burtchaell, Esq., commands fine views of the river Barrow and the Blackstairs mountains. The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Leighlin, and in the patronage of the Bishop: the tithes amount to £440. The church is a plain edifice. In the R. C. divisions it is the head of a union or district, comprising this parish, Ullard, and Powerstown, and has two chapels, of which that at Graig is a very commodious building. There are two national schools, in which about 500 children are educated. Towards the erection of one of these Lord Clifden gave £50 and subscribes £10. 10. annually for its support, and it is further aided by an annual donation from D. Burtchaell, Esq. There are some remains of a castle near the river.

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