TEMPLECROAN

From A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837

TEMPLECROAN, a parish, in the barony of BOYLAGH, county of DONEGAL, and province of ULSTER; containing, with the post-town of Dungloe and the islands of Arranmore and Rutland (which are separately described), 8198 inhabitants. The parish is situated on the north-western coast, and is bounded on the north by the Gwidore river; it comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 52,921 statute acres, of which 989 ½ are in the tideway of the Gwidore, and 2896 in lakes. Within its limits is the greater part of the district called "the Rosses," consisting of a dreary wilderness of rugged mountain wastes and heaths broken on the west into abrupt rocky heights, and including many islands separated by inlets of the sea. Some of these islands are thinly covered on the summits with moss and heath, and a few present specimens of verdure produced by cultivation; Arranmore, the largest, forms a shelter for the rest and a barrier against the western ocean.

On the shores of Cruit grows a kind of long and broad-leaved grass having a saline taste, which the cattle readily feed on at ebb tide. The district is unfavourable either for grazing or tillage; the produce raised is inconsiderable and. there is often a scarcity of food. Throughout the parish agriculture is in a very backward condition, the greater portion of the land consisting of sands, mountain rocks, and bog: the mountain of Crovehy rises 1033 feet above the level of the sea. Indications of iron ore may be observed in the precipitous face of the mountains. Petty sessions are held at Dungloe, at which place there is a constabulary police station.

The living is a rectory and vicarage, in the diocese of Raphoe, and in the patronage of the Marquess of Conyngham; the tithes amount to £235. The glebe-house was erected by aid of a gift of £100, in 1763, from the late Board of First Fruits; the glebe comprises 815 acres, valued at £152. 16. 3. per ann. The church is a small plain building, erected in 1760 by aid of a gift of £400 from the same Board.

In the R. C. divisions this parish forms part of the union or district of Lettermacward, and is partly a district in itself: it contains three good, plain, slated chapels, one at Dungloe belonging to Lettermacward; the others in Arranmore and Kincaslagh, belonging to Templecroan. There are two parochial schools, situated at Dungloe and Carrenbuoy, aided by annual donations from Colonel Robertson's fund and from the rector, who also contributes to the support of two schools at Maghera and Dungloe: in these schools are about 160 children. There are also six private schools, in which are about 120 children. A dispensary is supported at Dungloe. Here are the ruins of the ancient castle of Dungloe, near which have been brought up out of the sea several brass cannon, bearing the Spanish arms, said to have belonged to the Armada.

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