County Leitrim

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Are You a Descendant of the Queen of Connaught?

Their letter contained many fascinating ancestral anecdotes, but one in particular caught my eye – it was a story about their ancestor, Helen Reynolds. You see, that surname suggests that she may have been a direct descendant of a very particular “strong woman” of ancient Ireland. Queen Maedbh of Connaught.  In last week’s letter, I…

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The Brehon Families of Ireland – Is Your Surname Here?

Have you ever had a “run-in” with the law where you live? Just last week we got our first 2 “penalty points” on our driving licence. I know – that makes us fugitive outlaws! But that’s what we want to talk about today – the use of law (and the brehon families) in Gaelic Ireland.…

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Beara Peninsula and Kenmare on the Wild Atlantic Way

Our first stop was in the town of Castletownbere. It’s one of Ireland’s main fishing ports and is a busy little town and the commercial hub of the Beara Peninsula. We had to stop for a quick drink at the famous McCarthy’s Bar – made famous by appearing on the cover of a book by…

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Seaside Houses

Clonakilty to Baltimore on the Wild Atlantic Way

The small village of Rathbarry (guess which family that was named after) and the nearby Castlefreke overlooking Long strand are our first stops along the way. We called to Castlefreke many times over the years – it has been abandoned and falling into decay since the mid-20th century. Apparently the last title-holder was a nationalist…

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Which Irish County Holds Your Irish Roots?

Their letter contained many fascinating ancestral anecdotes, but one in particular caught my eye – it was a story about their ancestor, Helen Reynolds. You see, that surname suggests that she may have been a direct descendant of a very particular “strong woman” of ancient Ireland. Queen Maedbh of Connaught.  In last week’s letter, I…

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