CHURCHTOWN, a parish

CHURCHTOWN, a parish, in the barony of RATHCONRATH, county of WESTMEATH, and province of LEINSTER, 4 ¾ miles (W. by S.) from Mullingar; containing 980 inhabitants. This parish is situated on the road from Mullingar to Athlone, and on Lough Ennel, by which it is bounded on the south; it comprises 966 statute acres, as applotted under the tithe act. The land is chiefly in pasture; that which is under tillage produces good crops, and the system of agriculture is gradually improving: there is a small portion of bog, and abundance of limestone. The Royal Canal nearly touches the northern extremity of the parish. The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Meath, united by act of council, in 1809) to the rectory of Dysart and the chapelry of Conragh, and in the alternate patronage of the Crown and the Bishop: the tithes amount to £180. 8. 3., and of the whole union to £373. 8.3.

The church is a neat modern building with a square tower, erected in 1811, by aid of a gift of £600 from the late Board of First Fruits; it is nearly in the centre of the union. The glebe-house near it was built in 1814, by aid of a gift of £400 and a loan of £210 from the same Board. There are two glebes, comprising together 24 acres, valued at £2 per acre. In the R. C. divisions the parish is also the head of a union, co-extensive with that of the Established Church; there are chapels at Dysart and Conragh. A school is supported by subscription, aided by the rector, in which are about 30 children. There are some remains of the old church, with a cemetery; and at Teaghboyan are the remains of a monastery, of which St. Baithen was abbot, and probably the founder; no records of it since the year 1229 are extant.

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