Flax Growers in Shanagolden, Limerick. 1808

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Small Sources 16: This list is of 26 persons who purchased flax seed from the Monteagle estate in the Shanagolden area of county Limerick in 1808.  It is from the correspondence of Stephen Edward Rice and the original is in the National Library of Ireland (NLI Ms 605A).   The heading on the list states that 124 pottles of flax seed were sold at 1 shilling 7 pence halfpenny per pottle on 15th May 1808. (A pottle is an old measure of liquids equalling a half-gallon). Each purchaser bought from 2 to 7 pottles.  These people would clearly have had access to land for planting and were probably tenants of the Monteagle estate. Note that eight of the purchasers are women.  Many of the stages in the making of linen, particularly spinning, provided employment for women in the home. Growing of the flax would therefore have been of direct interest to women in the area.  In areas where wool was not common, flax-growing provided a means of production of cloth for households.

Further Limerick sources are available in other blogs in this series including:  Farmers in Castletown 1848/49;   Labourers in Shanagolden 1808.   Ancestor Network will offer 1 free hour of research by a professional researcher to conduct further research on these individuals, or on other tenants of the estate.  We can also obtain images of the original documents. Click here and quote ‘Limerick SS16’ in the subject line.    We also publish ‘A Guide to Tracing your Limerick Ancestors‘ by local historian Margaret Franklin.

Thomas Hanly
Molly Crowe
Cate Flannagan
Cate Shea
Peggy O’Brien
M. Mc Mahon
John O’Brien
Dennis Maddigan
John Browne
Norry Browne
Arthur Hassett (?)
Danl. Keating
Marks Gearan
Michael Clancy
Thady Connor
Molly Crowe
John Griffin
Peggy Browne
John McMahon
Jams. Collis
John Barrett
Thos. Neale
Danl. Moore
Dennis Corbett
John Kennelly
Molly Flannagan




‘Tracing your Limerick Ancestors’   a comprehensive guide to researching families in the county. Written by local historian Margaret Franklin.

Published by Flyleaf Press and available from here.




Other articles in our series on Irish Family Sources:

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