Text - Mary Kyne, Hyperlinks/Maps - Antoinette Lydon

Claremount is in the civil parish of Kilcummin. The civil Parish corresponds with the following Church of Ireland parish of Kilcummin, Galway West. In general, the civil parish and the Church of Ireland parish are the same as is the case in the Kilcummin Oughterard area.

The Irish form of the name is

Claremount:  Clár Mór – Great Plain or Ard Clár – high plain.

Other forms of name: Claremount (Boundary Surveyor)

Known locally as Claremount – Ard  Clár.

Claremount is in the Electoral Division of Oughterard, in Civil Parish of Kilcummin, in the Barony of Moycullen, in the County of Galway

Claremount contains 569¾ acres about 60 acres of which are arable, the remainder is mountain pasture. Clareville formerly the residence of the proprietor is situated in its eastern extremity. There is a pound for cattle here, a copper mine, and at the small hamlet called Claremore there are 4 fairs in the year held also a Corn Mill now in ruins.


In the North Eastern extremity of the parish bounded on the W. by Lettercraff, S. by Glengowla and Rusheeny, E. by Derralaura, Thoanweeroe, Clare, Kanrauwer E. and West and N. by Newvillage.

This is a list of townlands that share a border with this townland.

Some other placenames in or near this townland are…

 Landlord: Thomas B. Martin is a member of the Martin (Ross) family.

  • Martin (Ross) – The Martin family were established beside Ross Lake in the barony of Moycullen, county Galway, from the late 16th century, where they purchased land from the O’Flahertys. They were Royalist supporters and were dispossessed of their property in the city of Galway by the Cromwellians. Robert Martin received a grant of 2,909 acres in the barony of Moycullen, by patent dated 21 Aug 1677. Jasper Martin of Ross, who died in 1700, had two sons Jasper and Richard, from whom descend the two branches of the family settled at Ross and Ballynahinch. Nicholas Martin, who died in 1811, married Elizabeth O’Hara, daughter of Robert O’Hara of Lenaboy, and according to Burke’s ”Landed Gentry”, a grandniece of James O’Hara, 2nd Baron Tyrawley. Their grandson, James Martin of Ross, had sixteen children from his two marriages. His daughter, Maud, married H. Callwell and they were the parents of the author, J. M. Callwell. The youngest daughter of James Martin was Violet Florence Martin of the well known literary team Somerville and Ross. The Martins of Ross owned 5,767 acres in county Galway in the 1870s. They advertised the sale of their estate in the Landed Estates’ Court in May 1885.
  • Martin (Ballynahinch) – A branch of the Anglo Norman family of Martin, one of the Tribes of Galway, was granted the O’Flaherty lands in the Connemara region in the mid 17th century. This family were a junior branch of the Martins of Ross and under the Acts of Settlement were granted vast estates in counties Galway, Mayo, Roscommon, Clare and Sligo. By a patent dated 1698 they were confirmed in the possession of their Connemara estate known as the Manor of Claremount by King William. The Westport Estate Papers document the sale of over 27,000 acres in the baronies of Moycullen and Ballynahinch by the trustees for the sale of Colonel John Browne’s estate to John Edwards for Richard Martin in 1699. The early generations of Martins lived at Birch Hall and Dangan, in the townland of Oranhill, parish of Rahoon, near Galway city. Richard Martin, better known as ‘Humanity Dick’, was the first member of the family to be reared as a Protestant. He was a famous duellist and founded the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Ballynahinch Castle was built in the centre of his estate. His son Thomas Martin died in 1847 during the Famine and Thomas’s only daughter and heir, Mary Laetita, inherited a heavily encumbered estate. She married her cousin, Arthur Gonne Bell, and died in New York in 1850. The Martin estates were offered for sale in two sections in 1849. Their property close to Galway town included Dangan, Corcullen, Bushypark and Killeen. Their Connemara estate was acquired by the Law Life Assurance Society in 1852, to whom it was heavily mortgaged. In 1853 the estate of almost 200,000 acres was surveyed by Thomas Colville Scott for a prospective buyer. Richard Martin, second son of Richard ‘Humanity Dick’ Martin of Ballynahinch, is recorded as holding five townlands in the parish of Killannin, barony of Moycullen, county Galway, at the time of Griffith’s Valuation although he emigrated to Canada in 1833. He was also recorded as the occupier of Clareville, a Martin home in the village of Oughterard. Many of his descendants still reside in Canada.

Down’s Survey

The Down Survey is a mapped survey. Using the Civil Survey as a guide, teams of surveyors, mainly former soldiers, were sent out under Petty’s direction to measure every townland to be forfeited to soldiers and adventurers. The resulting maps, made at a scale of 40 perches to one inch (the modern equivalent of 1: 50,000), were the first systematic mapping of a large area on such a scale attempted anywhere. The primary purpose of these maps was to record the boundaries of each townland and to calculate their areas with great precision. The maps are also rich in other detail showing churches, roads, rivers, castles, houses and fortifications. Most towns are represented pictorially and the cartouches, the decorative titles, of each map in many cases reflect a specific characteristic of each barony. (

Townland of CLAREMOUNT

Down Survey Name: Clare

1641 Owner(s): McDermod, Rory (Catholic); O’Flahartye, Murragh McRory (Catholic)

1670 Owner(s): Kelly, Donnogh (Catholic) County: Galway

Barony: Muckullin

Parish: Killcumyn

Profitable land: 28 plantation acres

Forfeited: 28 plantation acres

The down survey website will tell you who owned this townland in 1641 (pre Cromwell) and in 1671 (post Cromwell).

Down Survey Website

The Tithe Applotment Books

About the Records

Tithes were a tax on agricultural produce which was payable by the occupiers of agricultural land. They were the main source of income for the parish clergy of the Church of Ireland (the largest Protestant church and the church established by law). However, in many parishes a large part of the tithes was ‘appropriate’, which meant that they were payable to a bishop, cathedral chapter or another ecclesiastical recipient, or were ‘impropriate’, which generally meant that they were payable to a local landowner. The parishes used in the Tithe Applotment Books are civil or Church of Ireland parishes, which often differ in name and territory from Catholic parishes, Acts of Parliament of 1823 and 1832 provided for the conversion of tithes into a fixed charge on land, and specified the average price of wheat or oats in the parish in the seven years before 1821 as the basis on which the tithes would be calculated. They also extended the application of tithes to pasture, where previously they had been levied only on tillage.

This change in the law resulted in the valuation of individual holdings in almost all parishes containing agricultural land, in order to assess the portion of the tithes for which each occupier of land would be liable. The apportionment was recorded for each Church of Ireland parish in a Tithe Composition Applotment Book. The information was collected and the amounts were calculated by two Parochial Commissioners, one of whom was appointed by the cess-payers of the parish and the other by the relevant Diocese of the Church of Ireland. This procedure was carried out in over 2,500 parishes between the years 1823 and 1837.

The Tithe Applotment Books are in a variety of formats, from a few pages sewn together to elaborately bound volumes. In most cases they are written in manuscript throughout, although some consist of manuscript entries on printed questionnaires. The information in the books is broadly uniform and generally includes at least the name of occupier; the size of holding, the valuation and the tithe payable. In some cases, more detailed information is provided. Some volumes have maps and most have certificates and correspondence attached.

The sub-divisions of the parish were recorded. Some of these subdivisions, such as plough lands, ceased to be in official use after the six-inch survey of the Ordnance Survey was completed in the 1840s. Only productive land was subject to tithe, and the books usually distinguish between this tithable land and untithable land such as roads or mountains. Tithable land was in some cases classified by quality, and a money value was given to each class. In some cases, the proportion of tithe payable to the rector, vicar or lay proprietor of the tithes was set out. The column for observations was sometimes completed, with information about commonage, for example.

There are a number of other points that should be noted. The acreages given in the Tithe Applotment Books are in Irish or Plantation measure, which is 1.62 times larger than statute measure. Only occupiers of land at the time of the tithe composition are recorded, so not all heads of households living in a parish at the time are included. Only rural areas are systematically covered, although inhabitants of towns who held plots of cultivable land are included. The equivalent tax in urban areas, Minister’s Money, has left few records.

The Tithe Applotment Books are an important source of information for a wide variety of researchers of pre-Famine Ireland. They provide the first surviving national list of the occupiers of land, and are used by genealogists as a partial substitute for returns of the 1821 and 1831 censuses of population, which were destroyed in 1922. They also record information on the quality of land, and provide information on pre-Ordnance Survey territorial divisions, some of which were not recognized after the 1840s.

The National Archives hold the original Tithe Applotment Books only for the twenty-six counties of the Republic of Ireland. The books for the six counties of Northern Ireland are held in the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland in Belfast. (

No Information available.

Griffiths Valuation 1850’s

In Griffith’s Valuation the area is 569 acres 1 rood 1 perch with a land value of £35 10s 0d. Value of Building is £25 15s 0d, and the total value is £61 5s 0d.

Occupiers of the Land: John Mc Donagh, John Molloy, Richard Martin, Directors of Law Life Assurance Company, David W. Bissett, Patrick Healy and Michael Houghagan.

Ownership of Land and Property

John Mc Donagh owned a herd’s house and land 103 acres 3roods 21 perches (Land value: £2 buildings: 5s).

John Molloy owned a house and land value £2, Buildings: 5s. Acreage of land wasn’t given.

Richard Martin owned house, offices, stewards’ house, corn mill and land: 35 acres 4 roods 18 perches (Land Value: £19 10s 0d. buildings – £25).

Directors of Law Life Assurance Company had 3 roods of a Fair Green and received tolls from the fairs. Total value £8.

Richard Martin and D.W Bissett had mountain land 281 acres 17 perches with a land value of £3 each total £6.

Patrick Healy owned a herd’s house and land 52 acres 34 perches (land rate £4 and buildings 5s).

Michael Houghagan had 5 acres 2 roods 23 perches of land valued at £2.

(In later years the name was spelt as Geoghegan.)

View the heads of households in the townland at this time.

Out Offices and Land

The out office was a farm building, a cow house, piggery or barn. The land was very poor and sterile and people were always poverty-stricken. At this time most tenants were trying to eke out a living on 5acres or less and a farmers needed at least 15.3 acres to survive.

Clachan: The Irish is ‘Clochán’. The houses in Claremount formed a Clachan (referred to as a hamlet in earlier documents) at the time of the Famine 1845-1848 but folklore says the occupants died from cholera during the famine. A clachan was a small traditional settlement common in Ireland until the middle of the 20th century. They usually lacked a church, post office or other formal building. The origin is unknown but it is likely that they are of ancient root most likely dating to medieval times.

The Claremount clachan was a cluster of small single storey farmers’ cottages built on poor land. One surviving cottage was lovingly restored by the late P. Joe O Malley and is still in use – now slated. They were related to the rundale system of farming. According to David Lloyd, The Great Famine 1845–1849 caused such disruption to the social system that the clachans virtually disappeared.

People living in Clachans had the support of a tight knit community.

In some cases, the clachans have evolved into holiday villages or one or two houses have been taken over turning smaller houses into agricultural outhouses.

Poor Law Union Ireland

In Ireland the Poor Relief Act of 1838 divided into districts or “unions” in which the local taxable inhabitants were to be financially responsible for all paupers in the area. In 1898 the Poor Law Union was adopted as the basic administrative division in place of the civil parish and barony. Further subdivision into 828 registration districts and 3,751 district electoral divisions followed. Townlands were not arranged according to these divisions with parish and barony retained as a means to make comparisons with records gathered before 1898.

The 1838 Act

The main provisions of the 1838 Act were:

  • The extension of the existing Poor Law Commissioners’ powers to Ireland, with the appointment of Assistant Commissioners who were to implement the Act in Ireland.
  • The division of the country into Poor Law Unions based on Irish electoral divisions which were themselves made up from townlands.
  • The creation of a Board of Guardians for each Union, two-thirds of whom were to be elected, the other third to be appointed ex officio.
  • The setting up of a workhouse in each Union.
  • The collection of a local poor-rate to finance the system.
  • Assistance for emigration.

Initially, 130 Unions were created, based upon 2,049 electoral divisions. The divisions were composed of townlands, a peculiarly Irish unit, traditionally of 120 Irish acres in area. (Between 1848 and 1850, an additional 33 Unions were created by subdividing and reorganizing the boundaries of some existing Unions, particularly in the west of the country.

Boards of Guardians were elected annually on 25th March. Only rate-payers were eligible for election, which effectively disenfranchised most of the native Irish who were usually tenants at this time. Rate-payers were allowed between one and six votes depending on the size of a valuation of their property.


A town land is one of the smallest land divisions in Ireland. They range in size from a few acres to thousands of acres. Many are Gaelic in origin, but some came into existence after the Norman invasion 1169. Claremount is a townland and other place names in or near this townland are:

Clareville House: A neat house, 2 stories high with a Domain (Demesne) annexed to it – the residence of Captain King.

Owenriff River: Abhainn Ruibhe – river of sulpher. Other names for the river are River Fough (T.H. O fflahertie Esq. Proprietor). It flows from Lough Graffa (Aggraffard) into Rusheeney Lough known locally as Lough Mall and from that through the townland of Claremount, Fough West and Fough East and empties into Lough Corrib after passing the town of Oughterard. (O Donavan’s Field Name Books).

Tullaghacuit – Hill of the Cat.

Population & Census Information

People who lived here:

You can retrieve a list of people who lived in this townland from 1827 to 1911. This list is compiled from the following resources.

  • The Tithe Applotment Books
  • Griffith’s Valuation
  • 1901 Census
  • 1911 Census

List of nineteenth century and early twentieth century inhabitants of this townland.

1841-1891 Census

1841 – 19 houses with 91 people

1851 – no house with no one

1861 – 6 houses with 28 people

1871 – 5 houses with 23 people

1881 – 6 houses with 35 people (15 males & 20 females). There were 18 outbuildings in the townland. Valuation of Houses & Lands £67 5s 0d.

1891 – 6 houses with 27 people (14 males & 14 females) There were no outbuildings in the townland. Valuation of Houses & Lands £67 5s 0d.

1901 Census Claremount

This is a return of the members of the family, their Visitors, Boarders, Servants who slept or abode in their house on the night of Sunday March 31st 1901 in Claremount

There were 6 houses (2 uninhabited) listed in the Townland of Claremount. The people were all Roman Catholics and they were born in County Galway. There were 13 in total of farm buildings and out offices which included, a stables, cow houses, barns, piggeries, coach house and a fowl house.

Class of House: The class of house depended on the materials used in the roof, walls, number of rooms and number of front windows. A 1st class house was considered the highest standard.

Walls of the houses: The walls were of stone, brick, concrete or of mud, wood or other perishable material. The houses in Claremount were built of stone, brick or concrete. There were no mud cabins.

Roofs Landholder of the property unless otherwise stated. Roofs were of slate, iron, tiles, thatch, wood or other perishable material. The roofs of houses were of thatch, wood or perishable material. Most likely they were thatched as there was ample reeds for thatching in the lakes.

House Occupancy: 4 houses were occupied by one family.

The people listed as Head of the Family were also listed as the lawful Landholder of the property.

Enumerators Extract

House & Building Return

Out Office & Farm Steadings

House 1: Coleman Molloy a farmer aged 46 and head of the family lived with his wife Bridget 28 and his sister in law Annie Malia 23 single, Delia Molloy 40 his sister and children John Anthony 3, Margaret 2 and baby Patrick Joseph. Bridget and her sister Anne spoke Irish and they didn’t read or write while the rest of the family spoke Irish and English and they could read and write. Delia and Anne both single were farmer’s servants. The family lived in a Class 3 house with 2 front windows. It was a private dwelling with 7 persons occupying 2 rooms. They had 2 cow houses.7 persons occupied 3 available rooms

House 2: Frances E.J. Mc Dermot 45 wife of Edward Mc Dermot who was accounted elsewhere on the night of the Census lived in Clareville House – a Class 1 house with 10 front windows. Frances was born in Co. Sligo. Living with her were her daughters Florence 19 and Victoria 18 who were born in Co. Monaghan. Maggie O Brien 23 a domestic parlour amid was born in Co. Mayo and Mary Anne Judge 24 a cook was born in Co. Mayo. The people residing in the house spoke Irish and English and they all could read and write. They had 2 stables, coach house, fowl house, barn and turf house. 5 persons occupied 11 available rooms.

House 3: Thomas Healy aged 68 a farmer lived with his wife Mary 62 and family James 30, Pat 26 and Michael 19 labourer and they were all single. The family spoke Irish and English and they all could read and write except Mary. They lived in a Class 3 house with 2 front windows. They had two cow houses and a piggery. 5 persons occupied 3 available rooms.

House 4: John Tierney aged 65 a miller and farmer and head of the family and a widow lived with John 27, Patrick 21, Mary 19 and Nonnie 17 listed as farmer’s sons and daughters They all could read and write and they spoke Irish and English. They lived in a Class 3 house with 2 front windows. They had 3 cow houses, a piggery and a fowl house. 5 persons occupied 4 available rooms.

Census of the 2nd of April 1911.

Description of the Houses

All the houses in Claremount were listed as private dwellings and were built of concrete or stone.  The roofs of the houses were of wood, thatch or other perishable material. Most likely they were thatched. The head of the family was listed as the landholders. One family lived in each property. The Class of the house depended on the material used in the roof, walls, number of rooms and number of front windows. Most of the houses came under “2’ in the census form meaning that there could be 2, 3, or 4, rooms in the house.

Enumerators Extract

House & Building Return

Out Office & Farm Steadings

House 1: It was owned by Edward J Madden and it was vacant.

House 2: John Tierney aged 38 and head of the family lived in a private dwelling with his wife Mary 26, John 6 and Michael Walsh 13 a farmer’s servant. The residents could read and write except Michael and they spoke Irish and English. They lived in a Class 2 House with 2 front windows. John and Mary were married 4years. They had 2 stables and a cow house.

House 3: Thomas Healy a farmer aged 79 and head of the family lived with his wife Mary 73 and family Pat 36 his son married to Barbara 30 and grandchildren – Mary Gibbons 3, Thomas Healy 2 and Mary Healy 3 months. They lived in a Class 2 house with 2 front windows. The family spoke Irish and English and they all could read and write except Mary 73. They had a cow house and 7 persons occupied 2 available rooms. They were married 52 years. 10 children were born alive and 10 were still living.

House 4: Colman Molloy aged 63, a farmer and head of the family lived with his wife Bridget 40 who didn’t read or write but the family spoke Irish and English. Their children John 13 and Margaret 12 were scholars. They were married 14 years and 3 children were born alive and 2 were still living. They lived in a Class 2 house with 2 front windows. They had a cow house and a piggery. 4 persons occupied 2 available rooms.

Church records of births, deaths and marriages:

Church records of births, deaths and marriages are available online at To search these records, you will need to know the ‘church parish’ rather than the ‘civil parish’. (The civil parish is the pre-reformation parish and was frequently used as a unit of administration in the past.)

Claremount is in the civil parish of Kilcummin.

Roman Catholic parishes:

This civil parish corresponds with the following Roman Catholic parish or parishes.

  • Carraroe
  • Kilannin
  • Kilcummin/Oughterard
  • Rosmuc

Church of Ireland parishes:

This civil parish corresponds with the following Church of Ireland parish.

  • Kilcummin

In general, the civil parish and the Church of Ireland parish are the same, but, this is not always the case.


It is located at 53° 25′ 42″ N, 9° 21′ 11″ W.

Original OS map of this area.

Ireland was first mapped in the 1840s. These original maps are available online.


Original OS maps at the Ordnance Survey of Ireland website.

Below is a link to the Ordnance Survey of Ireland website. It displays the original OS map that was created in the 1840s.


Information from Google Maps.

You can use this link to find this townland on Google Maps.

Google Maps

Information from the National Monuments Service.

You can use this link to view a map of archaeological features. This link brings you to a website wherein you will have to search for your townland.

Archaeological map from the National Monuments Service

Information from the Landed Estates Database.

The following is a list of those houses in this townland which are discussed in the Landed Estates Database.

Information from the Logainm database.

View logainm information. Website

Galway Library Website

This page was added on 01/10/2016.

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