This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at

Tag: Ballicollig

Ballincollig, Listowel and Dromcollogher

The Dandy Lodge in Listowel Town Park in February 2023


R.I.P. Fr. George

When I visit the Cork branch of the family the nearest church is St. Mary and St. John’s in Station Road, Ballincollig.

Behind the church there is a churchyard where many of the priests who ministered there are laid to rest.

In front of the church there are more ostentatious Celtic Cross headstones

Fr. George O’Mahony was the most recent parish priest to die. I encountered him at family christenings and communions. He was a gentle man and much loved. His gravestone is an exact replica of four of his predecessors

The parishioners have put a seat to his memory in front of the church.

It is a fitting memorial to a man who served the parish with humility and diligence. Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a shearbhónta dilis.


The Bard of Brandon and Listowel Food Fair

Ted Creedon was recently given the honour of the title Bard of Brandon. His poem was a humorous one about Listowel’s first food fair. The Kerryman, when covering the story, included the above few verses from the winning poem.


In Lizzie’s Little Kitchen

North Cork visitors to North Kerry last weekend took the opportunity to sample Lizzie’s fare. The TV chef was generous with her time and only too willing to talk food. These ladies have a fair bit of food knowledge between them as well.

Lizzie, me, Breeda Ahern Lil MacSweeney and Margaret O’Connell



Last week we remembered Dromcollogher’s darkest hour, September 5 1926.

Before the horrific tragedy that took the lives of 48 people the town’s main claim to fame was the Percy French song which wrongly claimed that there was only one street in Dromcollogher.

Kathleen Griffin was in Drom in September 18 2019. She sent us this photo.

Dromcollogher – 18-09-2019


Saturday’s best photo

Photo shared on the internet

Jonathan Sexton celebrates with his family after Ireland’s victory over France on Saturday Feb.11 2023.


Tralee Mercy Sisters, Records Destroyed and A Trip Home

It’s still safe to visit us.


Mercy Sisters First Tralee House


On this Day; June 30 1922

June 30 1922 was the day that future genealogists’ and family researchers’ hearts were well and truly broken. On that fateful day, the biggest explosion ever seen in Dublin destroyed records of Irish administrations from the 13th to the 19th centuries. Earlier damage had already been done during World War 1 with the pulping of census returns for 1861, ’71, ’81 and “ 91.

What was lost in the explosion of 1922?

Census returns for the years 1921, 31, 41, and ’51

One thousand Church of Ireland parish registers

Wills and deeds and land transactions

Court Reports

Military Records

Was this explosion an accident?

Sadly, no.

The public records office was housed in The Four Courts in Dublin. 

On April 14 1922, anti treaty rebels under Rory O’Connor occupied this building.

Pro treaty forces of the Free State government under Michael Collins attempted to dislodge them.

On June 30th the rebels in The Four Courts, now under Ernie O’Malley surrendered.

The arsenal of ammunition and explosives the rebels had stored in The Four Courts was torched and thus was lost a millennium of official Irish records.


Going Home

I made a trip to Ballincollig recently to catch up with some of my family. Clíona and Seán were on their way home to Kildare from a wedding in Kinsale. Their happy event is due in early August and I’ve hardly seen them for the whole 9 months.

The boys are boyeens no longer. They are as tall as their dad now.

On my way home to The Kingdom I called to my family in Kanturk.

This time there were 3 horses to greet me in the field near the house.

This is Woody, the newest of the three. The two well established ones were bullying him out of my picture.

This noble looking fellow was the boss on this occasion.

Just to spite them I’m putting a picture of Woody all by himself in all his chestnut beauty.


Ireland’s Love Affair with the Kennedys

Of all the American presidents, Ireland held a special place is the heart of JFK and that love was reciprocated. The combination of his youthful good looks, his superb speechmaking and declared love for this “green and misty isle” of his ancestors on both sides, meant that on his visit here shortly before his death, he was feted like a film star and world leader rolled into one. The photograph printed in a Sunday newspaper of President and Mrs. Kennedy was displayed in many Irish homes side by side with The Pope.

So I was not surprised when a local man shared with me an album of photographs and newspaper cuttings that an Irish American nun had put together for him.

The album included autographed photographs of JFK and Jackie.


Lovely changes in The Small Square

The green awning and wind shelter at Lynch’s are an enhancement to this corner.


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