Roscrea Churches, Convent, Friends - Book of County Tipperary, 1889

About “The Book of County Tipperary,” 1889

George Henry Bassett produced 7 Irish county directories in the 1880s: Antrim, Armagh, Down, Kilkenny, Louth, Tipperary and Wexford. Each provides useful history of the respective counties as well as lists of office holders, farmers, traders, and other residents of the individual cities, towns and villages.

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The directories are naturally an invaluable resource for those tracing family history. The Book of County Tipperary is the first of these to be made available on, with its own search page. However, there are a few points to bear in mind.

  1. This online version is designed primarily as a genealogical research tool and therefore the numerous advertisements in the original book, many full page, and quite a few illustrated, have been excluded.
  2. The text has been proofed with due care, but with large bodies of text typographical errors are inevitably bound to occur.
  3. Be aware that there were often inconsistencies in spelling surnames in the 19th century and also that many forenames are abbreviated in Bassett’s directories.

With respect to the last point, surnames which today begin with the “Mc” prefix, for example, were often formerly spelt as “M‘,”. For a list of some of the more common forename abbreviations used in the directory, see Forename Abbreviations.

To enjoy the rich variety of advertisements, confirm accuracy of the entries, or have a printed record of a family member, obtain an original or facsimile copy of The Book of County Tipperary.

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The Protestant church, already referred to in connection with St. Cronan’s Abbey, was erected in 1812. It is in the early English style, with castellated pinnacled tower, castellated pinnacled gable, and pinnacled porch. The interior is spacious, with galleries at three sides. It was renovated in 1880. The chancel window, stained glass, and organ, were provided from a bequest by William Kingsley, M.D., 1862–4. Mural tablets commemorate F. A. Jackson, 1872; Archdeacon Roe, 33 years rector of Roscrea, 1882; Albert Maxwell, 1773; Saml. Maxwell, 1812; Albert Maxwell, 1847; Albert F. Maxwell, 1872; Phoebe M. Hart, 1884.

The Catholic church is a cruciform edifice, with two octagon towers and small graceful spires. It stands at the opposite side of the river from the Franciscan Abbey, with which it is connected by a bridge. The tower of the abbey, as already stated, forms the entrance gate and belfry. The interior of the church is chaste. The high altar, Caen stone and marble, is very handsome. Behind it is a beautiful screen of Caen stone, supported by pillars of Irish marble. The pulpit and communion rail are also of Caen stone and marble. In the apse there are five fine stained windows, presented by members of the congregation. Other stained windows commemorate John Meagher, 1886; Timothy Meagher, 1882; Edward O’Leary, Philip Kennedy, 1881; Rev. John Doolan, C.C., 1848; Rev. Dr. Blake, P. P., 1866; Rev. Thos. Lynch, 1875; Rev. James O’Shaughnessy. The foundation stone of the church was laid in 1845.

The Methodist church faces the Mall. It was erected in 1801, destroyed, and rebuilt in 1840. The first church of the Wesleyan denomination was in Rosemary Square. Its pulpit was once occupied by the Rev. John Wesley. At present the congregation numbers about 100, exclusive of soldiers.

The Convent of the Sacred Heart was established by the Bridgetine Order in 1825. Sisters of the Sacred Heart succeeded in 1845. The buildings are extensive, and the grounds—between 27 and 28 acres— handsomely planted, occupy an elevation at the back of the Catholic Church. Among the additions made by the Sisters of the Sacred Heart is a beautiful chapel. There are 40 nuns in community, whose labors include the teaching of a ladies’ boarding school, ladies’ day school, and a National school with 300 children.

Down to about four years ago, members of the Society of Friends had a Meeting House in Rosemary-street. It has since been used for Gospel meetings.