The Colony in Bunlehinch-Lecture and video

Bunlehinch Bridge or Clapper Bridge
Mary O'Malley

My native place lies about 8Kms from Louisburgh town and close to the half-parish church and graveyard of Killeen. Take a right turn off the Louisburgh road, adjacent to my childhood home, and you’re onto a small road called The Colony Road. We will now walk that road and tell the story of why it is called The Colony.

Take a moment to reflect on the events described, while I read my short poem, “Bóirín na Deirce.”


We will stroll a while, you and I,

Down a long-forgotten, famine road,

Back the way; the path our people came.

Bóirín na Deirce, road of alms,

Each side bound in by solid stone.


A uniform of moss and lichen,

Will not hide a stone’s sad scéal.


‘In a place neither now nor then,

Not so long ago; when stones could talk…’

‘Oh, seanachaí, let your story flow.’


Those solid stones, like skulls and bones,

Large or small, round and square,

Each a single sacred story.


Séamus McNally



The full text of Séamus McNally’s lecture is available to download below.


Comments about this page

  • Thanks a million Seamus for a brilliant history. My cousins Patrick and Annie McHale lived in one of the cottages, inherited from their father Pat, but how he got to own it I don’t know.
    It’s wonderful to have this local history preserved in one place for ever.

    By John McHale (21/11/2022)
  • I would love more specific information like dates of when the first teacher began teaching, dates of the initial grant and later grant of land for the colony etc. My McNamara and related families lived in the colony from at least the early 50s til emigrating in 1871.

    THANKS! Bill Baird, USA

    By Bill Baird (01/08/2022)

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