Conna Castle, County Cork

From The Illustrated Dublin Journal, Volume 1, Number 24, February 15, 1862

FROM three to four miles west of Tallow stands Conna Castle, on a high limestone rock, which rises almost perpendicularly from the river Bride. The exterior of the building is tolerably perfect.Conna Castle, County Cork, Ireland It presents a square tower, about eighty feet in height. The first arched floor, called "The Earl's Room," is accessible by a winding staircase of cut limestone, which, for neatness of execution, far exceeds any we have seen in the ancient towers of the south. From this room may be descried, to the west, a tract of finely-diversified country: immediately under is the village of Conna; a little beyond which is a rising ground, called "Gallows Hill," the spot where, we are told, Cromwell stationed his army, and held council for the execution of the defending forces, and from whence he battered the castle, apparently with little effect. Over the entrance is a covered aperture in the wall, which communicates with the upper room, and is evidently for the purpose of letting fall missiles, or boiling water, or lead, on an enemy attempting to force the doorway; this conducting aperture is, with few exceptions, peculiar to the ancient defensive towers, and similarly situated in each. Dr. Smith, in his "History of the county of Cork," thus mentions it: "A mile west of Maguly is Connough Castle, which belonged to Thomas Fitzgerald Roe. It was demised to Sir Richard Boyle by Sir James Fullerton, A.D. 1603. Near is a stone bridge over the river Bride. This castle is a high square tower, built on a steep rock, and commands an extensive prospect over the adjacent country. More west is the small parish church of Knockmourne, in repair, the only remains of an ancient corporation, which was entirely burned down by the White Knights, in Desmond's rebellion."