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: June 1953

UCC Social Science class, Scully’s Corner, some happy boys and a festival of everything seaweed related

This group of local social scientists is pictured at their conferring ceremony in UCC.  My collaborator did not give me a year.

Front row. Cork UCC staff. Far right Paddy Drummond, —–? Fr Michael Galvin.

Middle Row L-R; Garda ?, Robert and Olive Pierse, Eileen Larkin, Mrs Sheahan, Mrs Walsh, Mrs Culhane, Mr and Mrs John Pierse, Pat Kennelly. 

Back Row, l-r; Garda ? , Bill Walsh, Michael Dillane, Pat Rochford, John and Jer Kennelly and Dan Keane.


Big Changes at Scully’s Corner

Broderick’s  is also now being renovated.


Ellis Island

Little known fact:

Ellis Island is named after a farmer, Thos. Ellis who owned it
and used it for grazing animals. But when millions of people were arriving into
NY and creating all sorts of chaos, not only carrying diseases, the NY
authorities purchased the Island as an Immigration Station where people could
be “processed” before being allowed into the US. Prior to that the
people went to Castlegarden, in NY. Ellis Island opened in 1892 and it is said
that in 50 years 12 million passed through. There is a lovely Irish Balled
called “Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears” which tells the story of Annie
Moore, a 15 year old Irish girl who was the first to be processed on the Island.


World’s Smallest Public Library?

My daughter snapped this in Bonn recently


Noreen O’Connell is a very proud Nana. She sent me these photos of her grandsons taken on St. Patrick’s Day 2015

8 year old Chris O’ Connell was busking in Castlebar on St. Patrick’s Day 2015 and 21 month Darren O Connor enjoyed a cone while watching the Listowel parade.


Seaweed Festival

Ballybunion has come up with a great idea for a festival; the Wild Atlantic Seaweed Festival. This is what the organizers say,

“Ballybunion will be celebrating everything good about seaweed…from seaweed in cookery, in healthy living, in beauty products to soaking in the age-old tradition of our famous seaweed baths at the Wild Atlantic Seaweed Weekend on the 5th, 6th & 7th of June, 2015. Our weekend will also celebrate other bounty from the sea like our local Shannon Dolphin, periwinkles, mussels, oyster, fish and sea salt.”


….days like this

Looks like the whole town decamped to the sports field on June 29 1953.

 In response to John Murphy, Margaret Ward identified a few more people.

“In reply to John Murphy(who I think is one of the Murphys of the Railway Gates), yes next to him is a Cahill but it is Maurice RIP. Next to Maurice is Paddy Mc Guinness, then an O’Mahoney from Charles St. (I’m not good on first names), next is Ned Boursin, an O’ Carroll from the Red Cottages, again no first name, then a Kennelly(Cloth Hall) who married one of the Harmon girls, who is also in that photo.”


Are you researching your Kerry Ancestors?

Here is a link to a great blogpost by Kay Caball outlining what resources and records are available to you:

Researching your Kerry Ancestors

Time and Tide wait for no man

Falling into decay

I had occasion recently to pass by the convent and I took the opportunity to document its further decline. It’s very sad to see it  gradually go to rack and ruin.

End of an era !


Radharc film of a Fair day in Abbeyfeale in 1963


Happy Day in June 1953

From Marie (Nelligan) Shaw in New Jersey comes this memory.

Marie wrote;

“I remember that agricultural display in the sports field in 1953 very well. On the extreme right there is a tall man in a dark suit, that was Mr. Morgan from Colbert St., next to him is my aunt Liz and the kid sitting on the fence is me.




Exciting developments at Listowel Garden Centre

Listowel Garden centre is a building site at the moment. Watch out for news of its grand reopening


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