Humphrys genealogy

Genealogy research by Mark Humphrys.


My ancestors - Conway - Contents

  The beer garden, Kingston's bar

The Conway-Blennerhassett tomb

The churches at Killorglin

Castle Conway, Killorglin, Co.Kerry

Castle Conway (formerly Killorglin Castle), Killorglin, Co.Kerry.
Not to be confused with Conway or Conwy Castle in Wales.

Castle Conway (red cross) in Killorglin, on 1829 to 1842 map.

Originally "Killorglin Castle", built 1215 by Maurice Fitzgerald.
Granted 1587 (confirmed 1592) to Capt. Jenkin Conway.
Killorglin Castle was burned in Aug 1600, during the Nine Years' War.
Capt. Jenkin's son Jenkin Conway built a new castle there after 1613 and re-named it "Castle Conway".

Castle Conway passed by marriage to Robert Blennerhassett around 1660.
The old castle was in ruins as at 1682.
Avice Conway was buried 1683 in the Chapel at Castle Conway.

The Blennerhassetts, probably in the time of John Blennerhassett, "Black Jack" (1690s to 1730s) built a fine new residence there.
Elizabeth Cross was buried 1732 in the Chapel at Castle Conway.
Castle Conway was inherited by Conway Blennerhassett.
Page 70 of [Smith, 1756] says Killorglin church was then "in ruins".
Castle Conway was inherited by Harman Blennerhassett 1792.
He sold it to 1st Baron Ventry 1795.

Still intact on 1829 to 1842 map.
Largely demolished by 1848.
Gone by time of 1887 to 1913 map.

A ruined wall (on the S side) survives today, on high ground, hidden from the street behind buildings.
It is accessible through Kingston's bar on Market St. See street view.
See 1998 excavation.
In 2010 the area in front of the wall (to the N side) opened as the beer garden and live music venue of Kingston's bar.

Castle Conway still exists on the map of [Griffiths Valuation].

By the time of the 1887 to 1913 map, Castle Conway is gone (red cross) and all that survives is a ruined wall (on the S side).
"Church" is the Church of Ireland church built 1816.

On the modern map slightly less survives.
See also Google Maps.
See 2000 photo from the S side.
See street view from the S side.

The remaining ruined wall of Castle Conway, from a distance.
Photo 2000. See larger and full size.

The remaining ruined wall of Castle Conway.
Photo 2000. See larger and full size. See other scan.

The remaining ruined wall of Castle Conway.
Photo 2000. See larger and full size.
See other shot.

The beer garden, Kingston's bar

The beer garden, Kingston's bar, Killorglin, incorporates as a backdrop the surviving wall of Castle Conway.

Photos from 2010 album at Kingston's bar on Facebook.

The Conway-Blennerhassett tomb

A marble memorial in memory of Conway and Blennerhassett was erected in 1732 in the chapel at Castle Conway.
The memorial to Elizabeth Cross was erected by her husband John Blennerhassett, "Black Jack" of Castle Conway.
The memorial is now vanished.
It is unclear where this chapel was:


Castle Conway on p.148 of [Smith, 1756].
Transcription of the Conway-Blennerhassett tomb.

Transcription of the memorial, in the transcript of "Black Jack's Book", c.1737, printed on p.55 of [Hickson, 1872].

Hickson in Kerry Evening Post, 24 Mar 1897, makes clear that she did not see the inscription herself.
She says the inscription is both in [Smith, 1756] and in "Black Jack's Book".
See all transcriptions and translation by Bill Jehan.
Jehan must be right to think Hickson copied this section from Smith rather than from "Black Jack's Book", which would explain the error about Avice dying in 1663.
The correct transcription and translation appears to be:

"Here lies Elizabeth dearest wife of John Blennerhassett gentleman; pious, sober, chaste, kind, missed by many; died 22 March 1732; in her 63rd year. Her grieving husband buried her. Here also lies Avice, mother of said John, who was drowned at sea in April 1683." [NOT 1663] "Also, Jenkin and Edward Conway, grandfather and father of said Avice. As well as Henry the brother of said John: in the memory of all of these the heir himself of Avice had this marble made".

The churches at Killorglin

KILLORGLIN in [Ardfert and Aghadoe Clergy] says: "The old Church stood at Dungeel, and there was also an old Church at Dromavally. The modern Church was built in 1816".
  1. Dungeel is some distance E of Killorglin. See map.
  2. Dromavally is close to Killorglin, on the E side. See below.
  3. The 1816 church was built in Killorglin town just opposite Castle Conway. See the maps above. It is now a restaurant, Sol y Sombra Tapas Bar. See street view of entrance. See photo.
  4. There is a new (1997) church elsewhere in Killorglin town, St.Michael's church. See street view.

Dromavally, Killorglin par, Co.Kerry, on 1829 to 1842 map.
This is on E side of Killorglin town.
See modern street view of entrance to graveyard.

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