Humphrys genealogy

Genealogy research by Mark Humphrys.

My ancestors - O'Rahilly - Contents

Ballylongford, Co.Kerry

Ballylongford, North Co.Kerry.
Home in the 19th century of multiple generations of the Rahilly family.
Most of the town is in Ballymacasy townland, Aghavallen par.
The Rahilly house is at the main crossroads ("The Cross"), Ballylongford. On corner of Bridge St (running off to the W) and Quay St (running off to the N).
The family was called "Rahilly" when they were at Ballylongford. They only became known as "O'Rahilly" later.

The new (LHS, 3 storey) and old (RHS, Finucane's pub) Rahilly houses, Ballylongford.
Click to rotate.
From Google street view.

Rahillys come to Ballylongford

Michael Rahilly and his wife Ann Sullivan were living in Killarney in 1810.
At some point between 1810 and 1831, their family (or at least, many of their children) came to Ballylongford.
It is unclear if either parent came to Ballylongford, or if it was just the children.
Note there is no Rahilly listed in Ballylongford in [Tithe Survey, 1824]. They might still be in Killarney.

Ann Sullivan's brother Fr. Daniel O'Sullivan was PP of Tarbert with Ballylongford from at least 1823 until his death in Ballylongford, 1832.
This may be how the Rahillys came to Ballylongford.
Ann's daughter Margaret Rahilly inherited property in Ballylongford from her uncle Fr. Daniel O'Sullivan in 1832.
The Rahilly business was meant to be started (or extended) with this 1832 inheritance.
Margaret and some of her siblings moved to Ballylongford in 1831 or earlier.
One of her sisters married a man from the Ballylongford area in 1831.
Another sister married a man from the Ballylongford area before 1833.

The date of founding of the Rahilly business in Ballylongford is unclear.
Finucane's pub thought that Rahilly built the old Rahilly house in 1806 or 1809, but this cannot be. They were still in Killarney.
It had been thought that Michael Rahilly started the business, and it was continued by his widow Ann.
However an invoice of Richard Rahilly says the Ballylongford business was established in 1836 (would be by Michael Joseph Rahilly).


Michael Joseph Rahilly and Margaret McEllistrem

Michael Joseph Rahilly ran the business in Ballylongford from 1836 to his death 1849.
The Rahillys lived in the old Rahilly house, Ballylongford.
When Richard Rahilly was carrying out repairs to the old house, getting rid of thatch roof, replacing with slate, he found a date in the rafter - 1847.
After Michael Joseph Rahilly died 1849, his widow Margaret McEllistrem ran the business.
She is listed there in [Griffiths Valuation, 1852].

Richard Rahilly

Richard Rahilly took over the business c.1860.
He built the new Rahilly house, Ballylongford in 1874.
This was a new 3 storey house, beside the old Rahilly house, at corner of main crossroads.
It was the only 3 storey house in Ballylongford (at least, the only private house - the old mill is taller).
It had a shop, with a cellar at the front, with wines for the gentry.
His son The O'Rahilly was born in this house, 1875.
[Deed, 1902] refers to the original long-term lease, Blacker to Richard Rahilly, 7 Sept 1875 (lease started 25 Mar 1875) "of the plot of ground on part of which stood the dwelling house and business" of Richard Rahilly. This was the entire block S of the mill, bounded by the river to the W and Quay St to the E.
It seems Rahilly did NOT own the mill. Rahilly erected out-offices on the river.

Family letters in [P102] and [P106] are addressed from "The Square, Ballylongford".
Richard Rahilly died 1896.
The family sold Rahilly properties in Ballylongford 1898.
Rahillys left Ballylongford.


The old house after the Rahillys

Richard's widow Ellen sold the old Rahilly house to Michael Finucane, by indenture 3 Sept 1898,
Finucane bought the old house and the yard down to the river, became Finucane's pub (new sign, "M. Finucane").
(Richard Rahilly had been a grocer and spirit dealer, but did not apparently run a public house.)
Michael Finucane, shop keeper, is listed on Main St in [Census, 1901]. The building return says it is a "public house".
Michael Finucane, shop keeper, is listed on Main St in [Census, 1911]. The building return says it is a "public house".

Michael Finucane died 1942.
The pub passed to his nephew, also Michael Finucane.
In 1969 Aodogán met a woman in Ballylongford who said her uncle bought the place from Rahillys for £800. She showed him the cellar under the shop, said they got as much for the wines alone as they paid for the shop. This is not very likely (£800 is actually about £300,000 in today's money) but it was sold cheap.

The second Michael Finucane died 1982.
The pub passed to his son, the third Michael Finucane, who now owns it. He filled it with O'Rahilly memorabilia.
[Bunbury and Fennell, 2008] tells a story that republican veteran Dan Keating (died 2007) used to call this Michael Finucane "The Young O'Rahilly".

Michael Finucane leased the pub out in 2012 and someone else now operates it.
It still has O'Rahilly memorabilia in it.
It is still called Finucane's pub. Also called "O'Rahilly's" pub.


The new house after the Rahillys

[Deed, Sept 1902] seems to be transfer of the new 3 storey house at Ballylongford from Ellen Rahilly, widow, of Quinsborough, to James Bannantyne and Sons, of Roches St, Limerick, grain merchants and millers.
(todo) See [P106/207], which says James Bannantyne and Sons are renting property in Ballylongford from the Rahilly family in 1908.
Rank Ireland Ltd (millers) bought the new house from Bannantyne.

There is a plaque to The O'Rahilly on the 3 storey house, erected 1966.
The 3 storey house is still the most imposing house in Ballylongford today.

There is a bust of The O'Rahilly nearby, in the grounds of the Catholic church. Erected 2016.

Ballylongford in 1829 to 1842 map (during time of the old Rahilly house).

Mrs. Margaret Rahilly in [Griffiths Valuation, 1851] holds plot 4 on Main St, Ballylongford.
4 a is offices. 4 b is a fair sized house, with offices and yard.
4 b is the old Rahilly house.

Ballylongford in 1887 to 1913 map (the new 3-storey Rahilly house exists).
Post Office is at Rahillys.

Ballylongford apparently later than the above (see Creamery).
Post Office has moved to Main St.
Map on wall of Finucane's pub, Ballylongford.
See full size.

Letterhead of Rahilly letter of 1891 is from "The Square, Ballylongford".
The location has also been called "The Cross, Ballylongford".

The crossroads, Ballylongford.
Postcard, c.1900 (after Rahilly sold to Finucane).
Looking W (down Bridge St to the bridge over the river).
Showing the 3 storey Rahilly house, and Finucane's pub in the old Rahilly house.
See full size.
See sepia version.
See other scan and colorised version.
See photo of other copy (and original). And alternate and alternate.

The new (LHS, 3 storey) and old (RHS, Finucane's pub) Rahilly houses, Ballylongford.
The plaque to The O'Rahilly is visible on the LHS (the S wall of the new house).
The old mill is in background.
See full size and wider shot.
See also shot of S wall of new house (this photo courtesy of Richard Humphreys).
Photos 2006.

Ballylongford - The old Rahilly house

Ballylongford - The new Rahilly house

Ballylongford - Other buildings

Cé a Chónaigh i mo Theachsa? (2010)

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