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The Forgotten Cemetery – Shane Delaney, Eileen Murphy


The Forgotten Cemetery

Excavations at Ranelagh, Co. Roscommon. DELANEY & MURPHY

In the summer of 2015, archaeologists uncovered the remains of a previously unrecorded ringfort in the townland of Ranelagh just north of Roscommon town. Over the year that followed, excavations revealed a site which began in the fourth century as a simple defended farmstead, but which expanded considerably and changed emphasis over the centuries in line with the requirements of its inhabitants.




Rathra – A Royal Stronghold of Early Medieval Connacht by Joe Fenwick


‘Rathra – A Royal Stronghold of Early Medieval Connacht’ by Joe Fenwick explores the date, role and significance of this spectacular multivallate earthwork, a little-known archaeological site concealed among the hidden heartlands of rural Co. Roscommon.

This beautifully illustrated full colour publication, the latest in a series published by Roscommon Co. Council is a must for anyone with an interest in the archaeology and history of the wider Roscommon landscape.

Rindoon Castle And Deserted Medieval Town - A Visitors Guide

Rindoon Castle And Deserted Medieval Town – A Visitors Guide


The town and castle of Rindoon were founded in 1227 as a royal Anglo-Norman borough and fortress on the sometimes turbulent frontier between the Anglo- Norman colony in Ireland and a region controlled by the Irish O’Conor kings of Connacht.

The well preserved remains at Rindoon are regarded as being one of the most important medieval complexes still standing in Britain and Ireland. It is, also, without doubt one of the finest examples in Europe of a deserted medieval town.

The deserted town and castle of Rindoon are situated on the peninsula of St. John’s Point, which runs out south eastwards from the western, Connacht shore of Lough Ree.

It is hoped that this guidebook will provide not only information, but enjoyment for those who visit Rindoon and St. John’s Point. Its detailed nature will hopefully also make it a contribution to the ongoing academic research currently being carried out on Ireland’s medieval towns, castles, abbeys and priories.

Roscommon Castle - A Visitors Guide By Margaret Murphy and Kieran O'Conor

Roscommon Castle – A Visitors Guide By Margaret Murphy and Kieran O’Conor


“In Roscommon Castle a Visitor’s Guide Margaret Murphy and Kieran O’Conor chart the history and architectural development of Roscommon Castle from the mid-thirteenth century onwards. The full colour illustrated guidebook has chapters called: The History of the Castle, The Siting of the Castle, A tour of the Late Thirteeneth-Century Castle, The Late Medieval O’Conor Occupation and A Tour of the Late Sixteenth-Century Castle. The guidebook also includes two detailed historical reconstruction drawings by Daniel Tietzsch Tyler.

This guidebook is intended to be a comprehensive guide for visitors to Roscommon castle, as well as a point of reference for academics and local historians. Historic Reconstruction Drawings used in the guidebook intended to give the visitor an impression of what the castle may have been like in the thirteenth and sixteenth centuries.”

“Authors: Dr Kieran O’Conor is a lecturer in archaeology in NUI, Galway. Margaret Murphy MA graduated from NUIG in 2002, after writing her Masters Dissertation on the subject of Roscommon Castle. She wrote the guidebook based on the findings of her Masters. She works as a freelance archaeologist and lives in Galway.”

Roscommon Abbey - A Visitors Guide By Kieran O'Conor and Brian Shanahan

Roscommon Abbey – A Visitors Guide By Kieran O’Conor and Brian Shanahan


“In ‘Roscommon Abbey: A Visitor’s Guide’ Dr. Kieran O’Conor and Brian Shanahan chart the history and architectural development of Roscommon Abbey from the mid-thirteenth century onwards.

The full colour illustrated guidebook has chapters called: Ecclesiastical activity at Roscommon before the Dominicans; Who were the Dominicans? The foundation of the priory in 1253; the subsequent history of the priory; the siting of the priory; the physical remains at Roscommon priory today; a tour of the thirteenth-century priory and a tour of the fifteenth century priory.

The guidebook also includes two detailed historical reconstruction drawings by Daniel Tietzsch Tyler and a box text by Colmán Ó Clabaigh OSB outlining a typical day in the life of a Dominican Friar in medieval Ireland.”

‘Authors: Dr Kieran O’Conor is a lecturer in archaeology in NUI, Galway. Brian Shanahan worked in the Medieval Rural Settlement project with the Discovery Programme.’

Boyle Abbey, Co. Roscommon


Boyle Abbey, Co. Roscommon – Conservation, Architecture and Archaeological Excavations 1982–2018

Archaeological Monograph Series: No.13

Edited by Fionnbarr Moore and Geraldine Stout

Boyle Abbey is a National Monument in State Care in the town of Boyle, Co. Roscommon. It was the principal Cistercian house in the kingdom of Connacht in the medieval period and its ruins today are among the best preserved of the order to be found in the country. Since 1892 it has been in the guardianship of the Commissioners of Public Works who have maintained the site. In the 1980s the Office of Public Works (OPW) undertook conservation works which involved archaeological excavation. Subsequently, in 2006 the OPW commenced a major programme of conservation works on the abbey, which involved dismantling and restoring the north aisle wall of the church, which had bowed. This was one of the largest stone conservation projects undertaken by the state and involved a multi-disciplinary team of experts, including engineers, architects and archaeologists who worked closely together to oversee the entire project through to completion. These works have produced a vast body of new information on the history, architecture and archaeology of Boyle Abbey, which is presented in this volume.



Kilmeane Co. Roscommon – The Graveyard and the Grave Memorials, Mary B. Timoney


Kilmeane Co. Roscommon – The Graveyard and the Grave Memorials, Mary B. Timoney, Editor

The style of this book is that of the Ballintober Old Graveyard and The Grave Memorials of Co. Roscommon. Like the Ballintober book, there is a catalogue of the Kilmeane memorials, including inscriptions, photos and references to those listed in the census of Elphin 1749. The Kilmeane memorials are compared to those of the nearby graveyards of Killinvoy, Athleague, Rahara and St. Coman’s and then extending out to other Roscommon graveyards. References are also made to memorials in other Irish graveyards.

Contributors include Dr. David McGuinness, Dr Daniel Curley, Seamus Lough, Martin A. Timoney, P. David Sweetman, John Macklin, Albert Siggins, Eilish Feeley, Jaqueline née Craven d. Towey.

Mary B. Timoney, originally from Waterford and living in south Sligo, has been researching graveyard memorials since 1984. She received an M. A. from UCC in 2001 for her study of ‘The Decorated Box Tombs of the Skreen School, Co. Sligo, c. 1780 – 1850’. In 2005 she published ‘Had Me Made, A Study of the Grave Memorials of Co. Sligo from c. 1650 to the Present’ and ‘Ballintober Old Graveyard’ in 2018. She has lectured and published on grave memorials in Co.s Cavan, Monaghan, Roscommon and Sligo as well as on the Association for the Preservation of the Memorials of the Dead, Ireland, and on the care of graveyards.


Moygara Castle, County Sligo – Kieran O’Conor, editor


Moygara Castle, County Sligo and the O’Gara’s of Coolavin – Kieran O’Conor, editor

Moygara Castle, with its four towers, gatehouse and high curtain walls, is one of the most impressive masonry-built monuments in north Connacht. Constructed in the late fourteenth/early fifteenth century by the O’Garas, the castle functioned as a centre of their lordship of Coolavin.

This study of Moygara Castle marshals various fields of expertise – history, archaeology, architecture, geography, genealogy, geophysical survey and DNA analysis – to provide much-needed information about life in later-medieval Gaelic Ireland.

Contributors include Kevin Barton, Jason Bolton, Anne Connon, Phyl Foley, Paul M. Kerrigan, Máire Ní Chearbhaill, Kieran O’Conor, Maura O’Gara-O’Riordan, Christopher Read and Rory Sherlock.

Kieran O’Conor is senior lecturer in the School of Geography and Archaeology, National University of Ireland, Galway.

The Elusive Mrs. Walcott – Nuala Farrell-Griffin


The Elusive Mrs. Walcott – Nuala Farrell-Griffin

The Elusive Mrs. Walcott: An 18th Century Entrepreneur and the Rookwood Estate, is a compelling
work that seamlessly combines local history with genealogical facts. Drawing on an impressive array
of primary sources, including leases, wills, land, church and state records, historian and genealogist
Nuala Farrell-Griffin explores her Farrell and Flaherty ancestors and their connection to Lettice
Caulfield Walcott. Known primarily as the woman at whose sole expense the Roscommon Infirmary
was built in 1783, and is obliquely commemorated on a stone plaque in the Foyer as, “Mrs. Walcott,
sister to the Lord Chief justice Caulfield of Donamon”. Naula’s meticulous research brings this
remarkable woman, and several of her ‘attached relatives’ to life.



The Burning of Knockcroghery by AnnMarie Murray


The Burning of Knockcroghery

Written and Illustrated by AnnMarie Murray

This colourful children’s book brings to life the story of the burning of Knockcroghery in 1921 by the Black and Tans and the resilience of the local community as they deal with the aftermath of their destroyed village. Told through the eyes of young Sally Finnegan, it is vividly illustrated and contains interesting facts on the Crofton estate at Mote Park, the Clay Pipe industry and the backdrop of revolutionary Ireland. 

The Burning of Knockcroghery Village, Co. Roscommon, 1921 – Regina Donlon


The Burning of Knockcroghery Village, Co. Roscommon, 1921

Regina Donlon

On the evening of 20 June 1921, Colonel-Commandant Thomas Stanton Lambert was assassinated at Benown near Glasson in Co. Westmeath. Hours later, the small village of Knockcroghery in south Co. Roscommon was set ablaze by the British forces, seemingly in an act of retribution for Lambert’s murder. The burning was an unfortunate case of mistaken identity, however, that ultimately resulted in the decimation of the local economy and heralded the end of clay-pipe production in the area. This study explores the complex world of rural Ireland against the backdrop of the Irish War of Independence, while demonstrating how local communities were impacted by evolving national narratives. Although it later emerged that the Knockcroghery company of the Irish Republican Army was not involved in Lambert’s killing, this study examines how the social and economic fabric of that community was altered as a result.