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: Listowel Bridge

Old Tralee, Old Market Poster, Queen Victoria in Kerry and statues in St. Mary’s

Chris Grayson in Killarney National Park


Old Postcard of Listowel Bridge


Old Pictures of Tralee Railway Station

These photos were shared on Facebook by Tralee and District Historical Society


Listowel Market

Paul Murphy sent me a photo of this poster from 1916. That was when one hundred really meant one hundred and twenty.


Queen Victoria in Killarney

A page from Patrick O’Sullivan’s great book; A Year in Kerry


St. Joseph in his new niche

A statue of St. Joseph has been erected on a shelf in St. Mary’s

St. Mark is on the pillar close by


Mizen to Malin Cycle

These Pedalllers were in Listowel this week. They are cycling from one end of Ireland to the other to raise funds for cancer care.

Strictly comes to Moyvane and the Death of Canon White in 1935

Snow in April 2016

Muckross Abbey this weekend photographed by Tim Bingham


Listowel Bridge

photo: Ita Hannon


Talk of the Town in Moyvane

Every parish seems to be holding a Strictly competition these days, if photos in The Kerryman are anything to go by.

Moyvane are holding their one on May 1st 2016 and they have roped in a prestigious panel of judges. They have a real dancing judge, a politician who had to employ some fancy footwork to get away from an enraged cow, a beauty queen and a football administrator. Promises to be a good night!

The dancers: (L-R) Owen Stack, Siobhan Fitzgerald, Shane Stack, Regina Galvin, Diarmuid Fitzmaurice, Sean Walsh, Diarmuid Leahy, Shauna Foley, Brendan Galvin, Kevin Kennelly, Fiona Buckley, Aine Scannell, Tara Mulvihill, Marie Stack, Norella Molyneaux, Karina Stack, Brenda Kennelly, James Fogarty, Liam Corridan and John Mulvihill.

(All photos and information from Moyvane GAA on Facebook)


A Back Lane

Listowel is like a rabbit warren with its maze of back lanes. This one is Mill Lane opposite the offices of The Revenue Commissioners.


Crossing over to Lofty’s

This great old photo of Convent Street was taken on film by John Kelliher.


Death of  Listowel’s Parish Priest in 1935

Kerryman  Saturday, 20 April, 1935; Page: 2


Late Rev. Canon White, P.P., V.F.,


Amidst many manifestations of
genuine grief, the remains of the late Very Rev. Canon Patk. White, P.P., V.F.,
Listowel, were laid to rest in the local cemetery on Monday. All business
establishments were closed, and blinds were drawn as a mark of respect to the
memory of their beloved Pastor, and all business was suspended. The funeral
cortege was of huge dimensions, and was composed of every class and creed of
the community-, and included a large number or people from Dublin, Cork and
Limerick . Members of the Men’s and Women’  Sodalities, a detachment of
Girl Guides, the local Branch of the Legion of Mary, members of the Sodality of
the Children of Mary, a party of Guards, under Supt. P. Chambers, and the
children of the parish schools attended by their teachers, marched in
processional order, preceded by the cross-bearer, and a number of acolytes.
Members of the local Troop of Catholic Boy Scouts formed a Guard of Honour
around the remains.

His Lordship, Most Rev. Dr.
O’Brien, Bishop of Kerry, was the celebrant of the Pontifical High Mass
at  Mary’s parish Church, Listowel. (Break, List of clergy at Mass)

The chief mourners were: Patrick
White, Bedford, Daniel McElligott, Woodford, Laurence and John Moloney, Duagh
(nephews); Miss Kattie  White, Bedford, Miss Mary Moloney, Duagh (nieces);
Patrick and David McElligott, Woodford,(grandnephews); Miss Mary Cronin, Duagh.
Miss Eily O’Connell. Abbeyfeale ,Mrs  Dan McElligott. Woodford, Mrs. W. J.
Hennigan, Listowel, W. Enright, Listowel (cousins).


My Boyeens are Growing up

Sean and Killian Cogan in Listowel at Easter 2016


Darkness into Light

Cliff Carlson took this photo of the organizers of Darkness into Light 2016. They were gathered in John B.s to organize this years event.

An Rás leaves town, Busking Day and some gathering events

Photo by Denis OCarroll of Listowel’s Big Bridge and the River Feale taken on May 23 2013. Superb!


These are some of the musicians and volunteers who worked so hard to make Friday’s MS fundraiser such a hit.


On May 21, as The Rás came through, the boys from Scoil Realt na Maidine were safely positioned behind the wall at The Slua Hall.

The following photos are of local people out in the sunshine to enjoy the excitement. It was great to see such a positive buzz in town and everyone forgot about recession for a day or two.

Some people were working; John McCarthy is welcomed home by his daughter after the finish in his hometown, Listowel. Press photographer, John Reidy was snapping some local colour.

Some local media and local supporters.


The Gathering

Dont forget tomorrow night Tuesday May 28 RTE will repeat The Gathering Homeward Bound with Tadhg Kennelly.

In conjunction with The Gathering there are lots and lots of Clan and family gatherings taking place.

On the left is Martin Griffin. He, along with the Lartigue crew, is planning a gathering of descendants of people who worked on the monorail. This is planned for later on in the year. I’ll keep you posted.

Junior tells me that he is Griffin from both sides of his family. Both Griffin sides are planning a family reunion .

This is Damien Stack’s photo of his family shop which was established in 1910. The gathering of the Stack clan back to their Listowel roots promises to be a great hooley.

The Stack Clan and all its branches and adopted sons and daughters will make their way to Listowel  from July 19 to July 22 for a packed weekend.

Meanwhile in Dingle all this week a week of events to welcome scattered descendants of Corcha Dhuibhne emigrants is taking place.

I read all about it here:

Find your Kerry Ancestors

“The Dingle Peninsula has a unique and complex history.   A lot of
damage was inflicted on the Peninsula during the
course of the Second Desmond Rebellion,
the Nine Years War and the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. Its remoteness and
isolation may have protected it from the worst excesses of the Williamite War and the 1798 Rebellion.  

 It is one of the
places in Kerry thas has experienced the highest level of emigration over the
past  three hundred years.   

 It was particularly
devastated during the Famine, with up to 5000 people dying in the Dingle
Workhouse alone.   The Kerry Examiner of 8 February 1847,
records ‘The state of the people in Dingle is horrifying.  Fever, famine
and dysentery are daily increasing, deaths from hunger daily occurring. 
From all parts of the country, they crowd into the town for relief and not a
pound of meal is to be had in the wretched town for any price’.   

Thankfully all these wars and famines are behind us and the Dingle Peninsula has

This year, the year of The Gathering, the people of the Dingle Peninsula are
taking the opportunity to welcome back our diaspora from all over the world so as
that they too might experience The Corca Dhuibhne Peninsula, the Gaeltacht, the
friendliness of our people, the goodness of our food and the wealth of our
culture, language and heritage.  

Corca Dhuibhne – one of the most
beautiful places on earth. 

 23rd May to 30th May 2013.”


Joanne Dillon sends us this link to a very poignant article from Irish Central.  It tells the fate of many Irish immigrants who died in quarantine.

Listowel F Coy FCA, Travellers, Ciarán MacMahúna and Listowel Bridge

End of an era for the FCA in Listowel at the Sluagh Hall on Easter Saturday 2013.

The caption says it all. This and other moving and valuable pictures of the final day in the hall can be viewed and purchased from  John Kelliher


John Kelliher’s stunning photo of Listowel Bridge at night.


A group of Travellers on their way to Puck Fair in 1954. Life then was a far cry from the lifestyle depicted in My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding. Hardship, cold, poverty and struggle and early death were the lot of the Traveller back then.


Shoeing a horse


This photograph was taken in Athea and not today nor yesterday.


“Rashers and Sausages Music”

Memories of Ciaran MacMathuna

By George Lee

“Rashers and Sausages Music” was what it was called in our house though purists knew it as “The Lark in the Clear Air” but it was that piece and Ciaran’s distinctive voice that announced Sunday morning.

We felt we had a hold on him, he grew up 5 doors down the Edwardian Terraced Cul de Sac, he had gone to the same school as us, and some of the old people in the Avenue remembered the McMahons in number 14. I recollect the excitement of the RTE Camera Crew coming some time in the 1970’s with him to do a biographical programme on his life and my father even possessed a copy of his wife Dolly’s song “The Hills of Connemara

The music still elicits all sorts of memory pictures of getting up early to serve Mass in the nearby Cathedral and of Spring sunshine catching the dust particles in its beam as it reflected off the kitchen floor. It was atmospheric and indicative of a time when life was slower and certainly less complicated and more innocent. My Dad got home from work for his breakfast some Sunday mornings and if you were lucky you shared his rashers and the soundtrack was always Ciaran’s voice and music.

Occasionally he would make a reference to Limerick, his upbringing or his family and that made him more “ours” and though his life was in a very distant Dublin (where we went to the Zoo) we always felt that in some way his ties were to his homeplace.

Of course I now understand that Ciaran’s work was so much more than just that radio programme and that as a nation we owe a great debt to him and the others who travelled the country recording a disappearing culture and preserving it. This was done in the days when recording devices were cumbersome and travel was difficult but his “Job of Journeywork”, as he styled it, has laid the foundations for much of the music and the Irish Cultural Revival that has happened over the past 40 years.

He often spoke of West Clare, of Fleadh’s and Mrs Crotty from Kilrush, of Tulla and Kilfenora, of Micko Russell and Willie Clancy, and of flutes and fiddles, all of the familiar things that meant something to a young man whose extended world encompassed his home place and the annual holiday in Kilkee.

We grew up with his slow measured bass voice and as it got older and early Sunday Morning rises gave way to long lie ins after late nights we parted company for a number of years. But as if to mark the passage of time when our own children arrived and woke with the dawn Ciaran’s voice once again anchored us reassuringly and the Rashers and Sausages music took on a new meaning.

And so it was that I was privileged to be the one despatched to collect him from Limerick Station to assist in the launch of a charity album. We drove up Mulgrave Street that dark wet Friday night and that Sunday morning voice was now in my car regaling me with stories of his youth and enquiring about old neighbours. I had a million questions to ask him but I sat and listened immersing myself in the voice and understanding just what a formative place his home was in his view of life. I realised that our upbringing in that same place though 50 years apart were almost identical and I learned from him that his passion for his trade was undimmed by the years and that my childhood Sunday Morning influence was as real in person as he was through the speakers of the radio in the kitchen

Ciaran finally no longer finished his programme with the line “go dtí an céad uair eile” in 2005 and went to his eternal reward in December 2009 and Sunday mornings have never been the same. For me the smell of Rashers and Sausages or the music of Geraldine O’Grady always reminds me of Ciarán MacMathuna.

 The above was posted on Limerick Life’s blog


Donal Óg Cusack is no stranger to controversy. In his very well written article in Irish Central he gives us his views on Pope Francis.

My Silver River Feale

This is a piece of tree that has been swept downstream in recent weeks. Doesn’t it look like some kind of arachnoid monster.

A photographer friend took this lovely picture of the “monster” with the bridge in the background.

The bridge 

On my way home from the river I photographed the ball alley. What a pity some vandals have marred the good work of our young people in painting murals there in previous years.

On my way through The Square I noticed our new parking ticket machines.

Listowel Printing Works/Easons is getting there. 

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