MANOR-HAMILTON

From A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837

MANOR-HAMILTON, a market and post-town, partly in the parish of KILLASNETT, barony of ROSS-CLOGHER, but chiefly in that of CLONCLARE, barony of DROMAHAIRE, county of LEITRIM, and province of CONNAUGHT, 22 miles (N.) from Carrick-on-shannon, and 102 ¼ (N. W.) from Dublin, on the road from Enniskillen to Sligo; containing 1348 inhabitants. The manor was granted to Sir Fred. Hamilton, in the 16th of Charles I., with extensive privileges, including courts leet and baron, and a court of record every three weeks, power to appoint a seneschal to hold pleas of all debts, with view of frankpledge, to have waifs and strays and privilege of free warren, and to determine causes and contracts to the amount of £1000. The castle, situated on a gentle eminence near the town, was by far the largest, strongest, and most handsome in the county: it was erected in the reign of Elizabeth by Sir F. Hamilton (from whom the place derives its foundation and name), and is 105 feet in length, 90 in breadth, and about 40 feet high, each of the stories being beautifully quoined and corniced with hewn stone: it is surrounded by a strong wall, defended by four bastions, one at each corner, and the stone of which it is built has a singularly glittering appearance, from the micaceous particles which it contains.

The surrounding land is remarkably fertile; the picturesque scenery affords interesting rides and views. The town forming one long street, consists of 233 houses, mostly thatched; the Earl of Leitrim, who is proprietor of it, has built a spacious and handsome market-house in the centre, having a large square at the back with ranges of slated buildings for provisions. There is a sessions-house, in which sessions are held quarterly, and petty sessions on alternate Thursdays: attached to it is a bridewell. The market is on Thursday, and there are fairs on May 8th, July 1st, the first Thursday in August, and Oct. 7th; also on the first Thursday (O. S.) in Nov., and on the 12th of every other month; they are chiefly for cattle, and rank among the most important in the county. Here is a constabulary police station. Near the town are Skreeny, the seat of Lieutenant-Colonel J. J. Cullen; Rockwood, of Captain H. F. Cullen; Hollymount, of Simon Armstrong, Esq.; Glenboy, of Lewis Algeo, Esq.; and Larkfield, of J. O'Donnell, Esq. The church is a neat building with a handsome spire, erected about 30 years since. There is a R. C. chapel; and places of worship for Primitive and Wesleyan Methodists. A loan fund has lately been established, having a capital of £1000; a school is supported by a bequest of the late J. J. Masterson, Esq.; and here is a dispensary.

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