Ordnance Ground

Antoinette Lydon

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Ordnance Ground 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.

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

Irish Form of Name: Camp or Campa

Other Forms of the Name:

  • Ordnance Ground
  • Barracks
  • Camp or Campa


Ordnance Ground has an area of approx. 6½ acres about 2 acres of which are under tillage, the remainder is rock. The Barracks is occupied by the Constabulary. There are two natural bridges at its S. entrance and a natural causeway across the river on its N. side – the Oughterard river, centre of which forms the N.E. and Western boundary of the Ordnance Ground.


Ordnance Ground borders the following other townlands:


Arthur French St. George of Tyrone House.

Arthur French St. George is a member of the St George (Tyrone) family.

St. George (Tyrone House) – The St.George estate was centred on the house at Tyrone, parish of Drumacoo, barony of Dunkellin, built about 1779. This had originally been a French estate but the family assumed the title of St.George in 1774 due to inheritence from the St.George family of Hatley Manor, county Leitrim. In the 1830s A.F. St. George owned Tyrone House and Kilcolgan Castle, his agent was J. O’Hara. Wm. Griffith of Dublin also acted as an agent for the St. George estate. Arthur French St. George is described as a resident proprietor in 1824. In the early 19th century the St. Georges also owned large amounts of land in the baronies of Moycullen, Ballynahinch and Clare, which they advertised for sale in the early 1850s. Land in the barony of Clare had been acquired through Arthur French’s marriage with a Kirwan in the late 17th century. A portion of the St. George estate, situated in the barony of Longford, was offered for sale in the Encumbered Estates court in November 1853. In 1870s the family owned 15,777 acres in county Galway. By the early 1900s, however, some of the estate had been sold and the house at Tyrone had been left empty for long periods. In 1914 over 3000 acres of an estate descibed as St. George and Concannon was vested in the Congested Districts Board. Many members of the family are buried in a church-style mausoleoum in the cemetery at Drumacoo.

Doig – In March 1854 John Doig bought part of the estate of Christopher St George in the parishes of Kilcummin and Rahoon, barony of Moycullen, county Galway in the Encumbered Estates Court. He died in Oughterard in 1871 and his children Helen, John and Scrope inherited 1448 acres in the locality. His son, Scrope Doig, was living in retirement at Oughterard in the early part of the 20th century. http://www.doig.net/DAVE1620.htm

St. George – Richard St George, a member of a Cambridgeshire family, came to Ireland in the 17th century and was appointed Governor of the town of Athlone. His grandson Richard St George of Carrick on Shannon, county Leitrim, had 2 natural children, Richard St George founder of the Hatley Manor, county Leitrim branch of the family and Mary St George, who married James Mansergh and they were the parents of Colonel Richard Mansergh St George of Headford, county Galway. Members of the family served as High Sheriffs of Leitrim in the eighteenth century. Charles Manners St. George and his Swedish wife Christina were the owners of the St.George estate in Leitrim in the mid-19th century. Petronella Halberg, niece of Christina St George, married Charles Whyte of Newtown Manor and the Whytes inherited Hatley Manor and much of the St George property. The representative of Mrs. St. George are listed as the owners of over 1600 acres in 1876. The family also held lands in counties Offaly, Roscommon, Tipperary (629 acres in the parish of Donaghmore, barony of Iffa and Offa East) and Waterford where Christina St George is recorded as the owner of over 1000 acres. Over 300 acres of Sir John St. George’s estate in the latter county was offered for sale in the Landed Estates Court in June 1878. Sir Richard St. George of Tully is recorded as a member of the Grand Panel of county Roscommon in 1828. In 1852 the Roscommon portion of the estate in the barony of Moycarn was offered for sale in the Encumbered Estates court.This was the property of Richard Bligh St. George and Thomas Baldwin St. George. However, it appears not to have all been sold as Kate St.George was a principal lessor in the parish of Moore, barony of Moycarn, at the time of Griffith’s Valuation. Her property was sublet from the Bishop of Meath. In the 1870s she is recorded as owning over 1700 acres in county Roscommon and was resident at Cheltenham, England.

Downs Survey’s 1641


Down Survey Name: Oaghterard

1641 Owner(s): Martin, Robert (Catholic)

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

County: Galway

Barony: Muckullin

Parish: Killcumyn

Unprofitable land: 23 plantation acres

Profitable land: 45 plantation acres

Forfeited: 45 plantation acres


Tithe Applotment 1829

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 were ‘appropriate’, which meant that they were payable to a bishop, cathedral chapter or other 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 ploughlands, 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 recognised 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. (http://titheapplotmentbooks.nationalarchives.ie/search/tab/aboutmore.jsp)

There was no entry for Ordnance Ground in the Tithe Applotment Book.

Griffiths Valuation 1855

In Griffith’s valuation the area was 6 acres, 2 rood & 15 perch with a land value £3 0s 0d. Value of Buildings was £41 10s & 0d. Total valuation of £44 10s 0d.


Occupiers of land

Board of Ordnance were the occupiers. “in fee”, meaning that the occupier is also the legal owner of the property; the property consisted of Military Barracks, yard & land.

Census 1841-1891 

1841 – No houses with 0 people

1851- No houses with 0 people

1861 – No houses with 0 people

1871 – 1 house with 69 people

1881 – 1 house with 102 people (89 males/13 females). No Valuation of Houses & Lands given.

1891 – 2 houses with 22 people (12 males/10 females). 5 Outbuildings. No Valuation of Houses & Lands given.

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 5 acres or less and a farmer needed at least 15.3 acres to survive.

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. Ordnance Ground is a townland.

Census 1901 Ordnance Ground

This is a return of the member of the family, their Visitors, Boarders, and Servants who slept or abode in their house on the night of 31st of March 1901 in Ordnance Ground. There was 2 houses listed in the townland of Ordnance Ground. Of the people living in Ordnance Ground 6 (3 females/3 males) all were Roman Catholics.

The people that lived in Ordnance Ground were born in Co. Galway & Co. Kildare.

There were a total of 8 farm buildings and out offices which included stables, boiling house, store & 4 other out offices.

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, and concrete or of mud, wood or other perishable material. The house in Ordnance Ground was built of stone, brick or concrete. There were no mud cabins.

Enumerator Extract


House & Building Return


Out Offices & Farm Steadings


1901 Census

House 1

Charles Lewis aged 49 was head of the family; a widower, he lived with his children Michl John aged 9, Rose aged 7, Charles aged 4, Mary Ellen aged 3 & Bridget Sullivan aged 39, married.

Charles was a Constable R.I.C. Michl John, Rose, Charles & Mary Ellen were scholars. Bridget was a housekeeper/domestic servant. Charles, Michl John & Rose could read & write. Charles(child), Mary Ellen & Bridget could not read.

They lived in a 1st class house with 6 rooms and 30 front windows. They had stables, boiling house, store & 4 other out offices. This building was a military barracks.


House 2

Sgt Quarters was uninhabited.

1911 Census

This is a return of the Members of the families in Ordnance Ground, their visitors, boarders and servants who slept or abode in the house on the night of Sunday 2nd April 1911.

There was 1 house listed in the Townland of Ordnance Ground. Of the people living in Ordnance Ground all 4(4 females) were Roman Catholics.

The people that lived in Ordnance Ground were born in Co. Galway & Clare. There were a total of 6 farm buildings and out offices which included a stable, coach house, harness room, boiling house, shed and store.

Enumerator Extract


House & Building Return


Out Offices & Farm Steadings


House 1

Anne Thompson aged 40 was head of the family; married she lived with her daughters, Lillian aged 15, Edith aged 8 & Evelyn aged 5.

No occupation given for Anne, Lillian, Edith & Evelyn were scholars. Anne & her daughters could read & write. The girls spoke Irish & English.

Anne was married for 17 years; she had 5 children with 4 still living at the time of the census.

They lived in a 1st class house with 6 rooms and 8 front windows. This building was a military barracks.


Note: In 1901 this family lived in http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1901/Galway/Foxhall/Castlegrove_West/1402185/

Church records of births, deaths and marriages:

Church records of births, deaths and marriages are available online at http://www.rootsireland.ie. 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.)

Ordnance Ground is in the civil parish of Kilcummin.

Catholic parish:

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

  • Clonbern & Kilkerrin in Galway East.
  • Carraroe in Galway West.
  • Kilannin in Galway West.
  • Kilcummin/Oughterard in Galway West.
  • Rosmuc in Galway West.

Church of Ireland parish:

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

  • Kilcummin in Galway West.

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

Information from Galway Library Website  



 It is located at It is located at 53° 25′ 58″ N, 9° 19′ 13″ W.

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

Ordnance Ground

Below is a link to the Ordnance Survey of Ireland website.

Ordnance Ground

Information from 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

Galway Library Website


Townlands.ie Website




This page was added on 13/02/2015.

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