Roscommon Labourers and Tradesmen 1846

Small Sources 21.  This is a list of labourers and tradesmen employed at Kilronan Castle, Co. Roscommon during the half-year ending 1st May 1846, when it was the estate of the Tenison family.  The original document is in the National Library of Ireland (ref NLI Ms. 5101).   The list shows the name; townland in which the person lived; rate of pay; number of  days worked;  sum due;  amount paid;  and a column for a signature and notes.  Only a few signed their names; the rest made their mark.

The standard payment was 8d (8 pence) per day.  Other rates of payment are indicated below.  Tradesmen were paid a higher rate e.g. 2/6 is 2 shillings and 6 pence per day.  The nature of the trades is not indicated, but these would logically be carpenters, masons, glaziers etc.   Owen Gaffney, paid 3d per day, is probably a boy. Note that this period was in the middle of the Great Famine (1845-47) and labourers are one of the more difficult groups to trace in Irish genealogy.  Kilronan castle is now a luxury hotel and spa.  All of the townlands which could be traced are in the civil parishes of Kiltoom, Kilronan or Ardcarn which are close to Kilronan castle.

The names Duignan, Regan, (McDockery), Glynn and Cooney are common in Roscommon.  The rarer names on the list include Lister, Rooke and Lymon.  These may have been specialist artisans from elsewhere in the country. Further information on some of these families may be available through our e-book title ‘Sources for Irish Family History 2021‘.  It   lists 6,500 books and articles written  about specific Irish families, and provides access to a wealth of published information on about 2,500 Irish families.

The images of the document above and below were created by Ancestor Network in the National Library of Ireland and are reproduced here through their courtesy. If you need help in following up on anything related to this source, or any other Irish research, you can outline your requirements here and we will let you know what we might be able to do for you. Ancestor Network will also offer 1 free hour of research by a professional researcher to conduct further research on these individuals, or on other tenants of this estate. We can also obtain images of the original documents. Click here and quote ‘Roscommon SS21’  in the subject line.

The workmen are listed below with the townland in which they are resident and (in some cases) a note about their payment and/or  whether they signed the receipt for their payment.  Further information on the location of each townland can be obtained at  (but only by using the currently accepted spelling of the townland name).

Name                              Townland                             Note

John Duignan                  Cartron
Thos. Gildea                    Carrigalane                          (note at end ‘not paid’)
Owen Gildea                      “
Michl. Bracken                 Curraghmore                       paid 2/6 per day (signed)
Thos. Langon                   Derrynehinchy
Peter Gray                         “
Philip Guheen                 Glassdrummon                   paid 2/2 per day (signature column blank)
Bernerd Lyster                 Kiltygowar
Stephen Gaffney`             “                                          paid 10d per day
Peter Dealy                        “
Thos. Gaffeny                    “
Patk. Grogan                      “                                         signed
Patk. Conlon                      “
Thos. Meehan                    “
Maths McKone                   Kilgarriffe
Patk Kelly                           
Francis McManus               “
James Glinn                        “
Patk. Grier                          “
Patk. Duignan                     “
John McCone                      “
Michl. McCone E                “
Terence Rooke                   Keadue Towns
James McManus                   “                                       paid 2s per day (signature column blank)
Michael McManus E            “
Michael McManus Senr.   Keadue Regan
Bryan Regan                         
James Cooney                       “      
John Duignan                        Keadue L..ends                paid 2/6 per day
Connor Rogers                         “
Michael McGreary                   “
John McGrath                          “                                      paid 2/6 per day
James McLaughlin                   “
Patk Duignan                         Knockranny
James Kavanagh                      “                                        paid 2/2 per day
Michl Kavanagh                        “                                       paid 1/6 per day
John Kavanagh                         “                                       paid 1/6 per day
Charles Regan                       Leitra
Michael Grier                           “
Patk Kealty                             Tullylions
James Sheernan                      “
Thos. Glinn                            Tully Glass
Charles Mullany                      “
Mart. Gildea                             “
Patk. Conoly                             “
James McCone                         “
Thos. Noon                               “
Bryan Leadon                           “                                    paid 2s per day (signature column blank)
Owen Leadon                           “                                    paid 2/6 per day (signed)
John Mullany                           “                                     paid 2/2 per day
Peter Lymon                        Gate Keepers
James Gaffney                         “
Owen Gaffney                         “                                    paid 3d per day

Fig. 1. Extract from the list of workers showing rate of pay/day, number of days worked, sum due and paid and their signature or mark


Further articles in our series on Irish Family History sources include: