Capturing the world with Photography, Painting and Drawing

Posts tagged “History

Sophie Scholl and the white rose Movement – Angles in the darkness …..

Yesterday I posted some images relating to the fantastic Jewish memorial in Berlin, I did not want to add any words to these images because I just wanted to and hoped that these images would share a feeling that I had walking and standing among the stones of this amazing public sculpture.

Today’s post is a little different, while In Berlin I came across the story of Sophie scholl and the body of Students of which she was a big part, called the “white rose“, Sophies’ story needs words, is all about words!. Words they, and she,this group used, words full of truth! yet by the simple act of using these words so many of these students including Sophie lost there lives!

If you want to try and understand what life was like under the Nazi dictatorship of the 1930’s and 1940’s, in Germany then you would be hard pushed to find any better example than the life story of Sophie scholl and the white rose movement, This was a group of German students who like many felt extremely disturbed and deeply saddened by the events they found happening around them and they simply wanted to express this feeling.

For the act of using their minds and voices to express what was a natural reaction, they lost their own lives. Sophie Scholl is one of the most famous of these student she was executed on 22 February 1943 (aged 21). She is just one individual among millions who lost their lives during the horrors, but I feel her story adds pure clarity to the events that she could not and would not tolerate unfolding around her!

How many of us today would be so brave?

“Who among us has any conception of the dimensions of shame that will befall us and our children when one day the veil has fallen from our eyes and the most horrible crimes – crimes that infinity outdistance every human measure – reach the light of day”


Sophie scholl

It is an absolute tragedy and as Sophie herself said inhuman CRIME that someone who could and should have spent a lifetime adding to the world around herself, contributing to man kind! was killed by men who only held bitterness and discrimination of all kinds in their hearts.

I feel that by knowing more about human people like Sophie scholl, I understand the history of the Nazi’s much better, these men and women who formed their ranks embodied the very heart and soul of evil and bitterness, heartless discrimination of all kinds and not just racist discrimination but ones based of what they felt was a social right to be better than other humans based on nothing!

There is no-one better than anyone else, there is no position based on wealth, location of birth or physical standing that puts anyone higher in life than anyone else !! PERIOD!

I would like to declare myself a member of the “white rose” ! as I know if I lived Back then at 21 I would have wanted to join!

Sophie Scholl – an ANGLE in the darkness !!

Quotes from Sophie Scholl the white rose


The legend of the Miller of Sanssouci, The WindMill of Sanssouci, November 2018

Sunset at the windmill,
Sanssoici,
Potsdam,
Germany
Nigel Borrington 2018

The windmill at Sanssouci, Potsdam is simply one of the best restored windmills in Germany, Potsdam was the home of the Prussian royal family and as such this windmill like many of the buildings located in and around the city are nothing other than the best of examples in German, even the world, architecture.

History of the Wind Mill

In 1736 the soldier king, Frederick William I of Prussia, gave permission for the construction of a windmill, which was started in 1737. This first windmill, completed in 1738, was a post mill, whose entire superstructure, supported on a wooden post, was turned “into the wind” depending on the wind direction. The first mill and actual Historic Mill was thus older than the nearby summer palace, built in the years 1745 to 1747 for Frederick the Great.

The legend of the Miller of Sanssouci

The legend of the Miller of Sanssouci first appeared in 1787 in a French book about the life of Frederick the Great (Vie de Frédéric II by an anonymous author) and in a watered-down form one year later in Germany.

The legend goes that Frederick the Great was being disturbed by the clatter of the mill sails and offered to buy the mill from its miller, Johann William Grävenitz. When he refused, the king is supposed to have threatened: “Does he not know that I can take the mill away from him by virtue of my royal power without paying one groschen for it?” Whereupon the miller is supposed to have replied: “Of course, your majesty, your majesty could easily do that, if – begging your pardon – it were not for the Supreme Court in Berlin.”
The mill in June 2009

This is only a legend. According to Frederick the Great the mill underscored the rural character of his summer palace and said “that, … the mill is an ornament for the palace.” The miller was reportedly a difficult man, who cheated the local farmers over their flour and constantly pestered the king with petitions. At least one of these petitions was heard by Frederick II. Grävenitz pointed to the fact that, as a result of the construction of the palace, the post mill no longer stood in the open, but was partly shielded from the wind. So he demanded that the king let him build the mill in another site and to pay him for it. Frederick II acceded to this, with the result that, shortly thereafter, the wily Grävenitz was the proud possessor of two mills thanks to the king’s grace, until he eventually resold the old mill.
View from the Erlöser Church

In 1768 there was a legal dispute at another location over water rights and the remaining lease between Christian Arnold, the tenant of a mill in Pommerzig in the Neumark, and his landlord, the Count of Schmettau. After the miller was found guilty on two accounts, he appealed to Frederick the Great, who intervened in the ongoing proceedings in favour of the miller. Wrongly, as it turned out later. The king referred the case to the Berlin Court of Appeal, who once again ruled against the miller. Frederick the Great, then demanded a condemnation of the judges and their imprisonment in Spandau Citadel for their unjust judgments and thus precipitated an abuse of his name.

This legal battle and the story of the Sanssouci miller were woven together in the legend and were intended to emphasize the king’s justice towards all his subjects. After the death of Frederick the Great, the case was reopened. His nephew and successor, Frederick William II decided in a compromise that “… the Miller Arnold case … should be viewed as the consequence of a mistake, whereby the praiseworthy judicial zeal of our royal uncle, who rests in God, was misled by incomplete, inadequate reporting of the true situation by badly informed and preoccupied [biased] people.”

In the years that followed there continued to be disputes between the reigning kings and the millers for different reasons.


Reflections of the past , Berlin’s Memorial to the Sinti and Roma Victims of The Nazi’s

Memorial to Sinti and Roma victims of National Socialism,
Berlin 2018

One of the most moving things about a visit to Berlin is just how many public locations have been dedicated to the unavoidable history of Germany. Memorials to the victims of the first and second world wars along with the cold war are located all around the city and they are free to visit and open to all.

Germany is not hiding from its past or running away from it, they welcome both inquiry and then knowledge!

It is a true credit to newer generations that they have made sure that so many victims of what was only a selective group of German people, are remembered into the future in this way.

The Memorial to the Sinti and Roma Victims is located just across the road from the Reichstag building, the German government buildings. It is peaceful place erected in 2012. When you enter the garden you are greeted by musical tones playing from the trees around you, this experience allows you time to stop and remember so many souls that were removed from life , rejected as people not wanted, not perfect and killed for just being from a different social background,location or belief.

The establishment of a permanent memorial to Sinti and Roma victims of the Nazi regime was a long-standing demand of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma and the German Sinti Alliance. In 1992 the Federal Government agreed to build a monument but the memorial faced years of delay and disputes over its design and location.

The city of Berlin initially wanted to place it in the less prominent district of Marzahn, where hundreds of Roma and Sinti were held in terrible conditions from 1936. In 2001 it was agreed to site it in the Tiergarten close to other Holocaust memorials but work did not officially commence until 19 December 2008, the commemoration day for victims of the Porajmos. The memorial was completed at a cost of 2.8 million euros and unveiled by Angela Merkel on 24 October 2012.


30 years since the fall of the Berlin wall, from a city divided to the city of freedom


Berlin From the divided to the city of freedom

When you visit Berlin you simply cannot escape from German and European history and the History of the Berlin wall is still a part of Berlin just as much as so any of the events that go into shaping this great European city.

This November 2019, the Berlin Wall is celebrating the 30th anniversary of its fall. On the occasion a large number of events took place in Berlin dealing with topics such as reunification, the construction of the Berlin Wall, the division of the world during the Cold War, the overcoming of the Wall by the Peaceful Revolution of 1989.

History of the wall

I travelled to Berlin last week and spend a week in the city during many of these events.

These are just some of the pictures I took that show the Berlin wall today as it is conserved for the many generations in Berlin and the world to visit in the future.

Events dealing with the history of division, the struggle for freedom and the process of reunification took place not only in the run-up to and around November but from the start of 2018.


The Castle Inside and out, Rathfarnham Castle – south county Dublin

Rathfarnham Castle
South county Dublin
Ireland
Nigel Borrington 2018

Rathfarnham Castle is located in south county Dublin. It was built in 1585 by Adam Loftus, Archbishop of Armagh. This is one of the finest examples of what is described as a ‘fortified manor house’ in Ireland. It’s 4 flanker towers, instead of being square are angular (angle bastions). This site is steeped in history and had previously been the site of an Iron Age fort.

The interior of the castle was redesigned in the 18th century by two of the greatest architects of the time, William Chambers and James Stewart. Chambers designed Buckingham Palace, Kew Gardens, St James’s Palace, Trinity University, and Casino Marino and James ‘Athenian’ Stuart is best known for his pioneering role in Neoclassicism in the mid 1700’s.

Rathfarnham Castle was for a long time used as a private house and ended up being a Jesuit College before it was taken under the care of the Office of Public Works. It is now open to the public.


The week of the winter solstice – Newgrange and the Winter Solstice

Sunrise_Newgrange_02

Today marks the Winter Solstice , nowhere here in Ireland will this moment be marks more than at Newgrange the perfect locations to gain a little understanding as to how our European ancestors both recorded and celebrated the movement of the sun and the objects of universe they lived in.

Today is the shortest day of the year, the day when at Newgrange the rising sun can be seen to travel all the way into the passage tomb at the center of the monument.


Newgrange – Winter Solstice

Sunrise at NewgrangeNewgrange is best known for the illumination of its passage and chamber by the Winter Solstice sun. Above the entrance to the passage of the mound there is a opening called a roof-box. On mornings around the winter solstice a beam of light penetrates the roof-box and travels up the 19 metre passage and into the chamber. As the sun rises higher, the beam widens so that the whole chamber is dramatically illuminated.

Access to the chamber on the Solstice mornings is decided by a lottery that takes place at the end of September each year. All are welcome to gather outside the entrance to the Newgrange mound on each of the mornings from December 18th to December 23rd inclusive, sunrise is at 8.58am. Access via the Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre or directly to the actual Newgrange monument.

The images posted here were taken this time last year at New-grange ……

Newgrange a Gallery

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The week of the winter solstice – Ardgroom Stone Circle, County Cork, Ireland

Ardgroom Stone Circle, County Cork,
Ireland
Nigel Borrington

Ardgroom Stone Circle, County Cork, Ireland

The Ardgroomon stone circle is located on the Beautiful Beara Peninsula, county cork. It has to be one of the most magical of all the Irish stone circle, it also has the best of locations and views, sitting about the Atlantic ocean. There is something so exciting and mysterious about visiting a stone circle. The Ardgroomon circle is located in an area were there is an abundance of these historic sites, as well as wedge tombs, ring forts, boulder burials and fulachta fiadhs.

As well as being used for the Solar Spring and summer Equinox’s along with the Summer and Winter Solstice, many of these stone circles would also log the Movement of the Moon, Planets and Stars as during the year they changed their positions along the horizon. The standing stones in a stone circle would have in combination with a feature on local hill sides, have been lined up with astronomical objects(Sun, moon, planets and Stars). This would have given an almost daily measurement for months of the year.

The reason that ancient peoples needed to log the movement of the heavens was mainly for practical reasons such as farming, they needed to know when to sow seeds, bring cattle down from the mountains and bring in the crops, also they needed to know how long their store of food had to last before the new growing season started, no imports in those days.


Ireland’s Ancient East , Knockroe Passage Tomb, County Kilkenny

Knockroe Passage Tomb, County Kilkenny
Nigel Borrington

Knockroe Passage Tomb, County Kilkenny

Knockroe Passage tomb is located in a picturesque setting on the slopes above the Lingaun River and old slate quarries which were abandoned in the early 1900’s. The site dates to around 3,000 BC and has many similarities to the far more famous examples such as Newgrange and Knowth in the Brú na Bóinne complex in County Meath.

Originally Knockroe would have been a similar tomb to Newgrange, albeit on a smaller scale. It is likely that it too would have had an earthen mound surrounded by large kerbstones. However unlike Newgrange, Knockroe has two burial chambers, located at the eastern and western sides of the feature. These tombs are exposed, and had long ago lost their earthen cover. Many of the stones lining the passageways of these tombs at Knockroe are highly decorated with megalithic art such as spirals, hollowed ‘cup marks’, and zig-zags. You can still find them in their original locations, and when you see them it is impossible not to wonder about the possible meaning of the decorations – was it purely decorative or did it have a deeper symbolism, and what messages may be in that symbolism? You can also still see the quartz which possibly would have formed a wall around the entrance to the passageways.

Also like Newgrange, Knockroe is aligned with the Winter Solstice. Every year around the 21st December people gather at Knockroe to witness the sun setting in perfect alignment with the length of western tomb.

Knockroe is one of a group of tombs located in this region, all of which are aligned with the large
mound on the summit of Slievenamon in County Tipperary. Knockroe is one of those wonderful sites that you can’t help to keep thinking about long after your visit, without being encumbered with its earthen mound, Knockroe is like the stony skeleton of a Neolithic passage tomb.

Gallery


Loop Head Lighthouse, county Clare, Ireland


Loop Head Lighthouse,
September 2017,
county Clare, Ireland
Nigel Borrington

Loop Head Lighthouse, county Clare, Ireland

I have just spent a few days visiting County Clare, west Ireland, finishing with a visit to the great Loophead lighhouse. As you can see the day was very typical for a Septembers day here in Ireland, wet and windy.

It was still possible to visit the top of the lighthouse however which was great fun in the strong breeze.

I have very much enjoyed visiting some of Ireland’s lighthouses over the years from the north coast down to Hookhead, on the south coast, these remote location with their lighthouse keepers buildings that would have been both a place of work and a home, all year around and in all weather conditions, are a great reminder of the past.

A past that has almost gone but can in places like these still be felt very strongly.

Sometime back I found this video and have shared it before with other lighthouse posts, its still very much worth sharing again however as it reflects on the family life’s of Ireland’s lighthouse keepers …..

Here is a little history of the Loophead lighthouse

History

The first lighthouse on Loophead was one of four known Irish stone vaulted cottage type lights built about 1670. These cottages accommodated the lightkeeper and his family in two or three rooms and had an internal stone stairway between two of the rooms leading up to a platform on the roof where a coal burning brazier or chauffer was positioned. Part of the old cottage with its battered outside wall can still be seen near the lightkeepers’ dwellings.

The light must have fallen into disuse towards the end of the 17th century because it was re-established in 1720 after aldermen and merchants of Limerick petitioned the Irish Parliament in 1717 for a light on the Head.

The cottage-lighthouse with its coal fire was replaced in 1802 by a more conventional lighthouse, built by Thomas Rogers, who was also the contractor. The tower was about the same height as the present tower with four rooms and a lantern. The ground floor room was an oil store and access to the first floor or entrance room by an outside staircase of 19 steps. An internal spiral staircase connected the other two rooms and lantern. The twelve-foot diameter lantern contained twelve oil lamps, each with its own concave parabolic reflector. The reflected light shone through a 22″ diameter convex lens of solid glass, not unlike the ‘bottle glass’ or “bulls-eye” fitted into windows of modern psuedo-Georgian houses.

By 1811 the keeper was living in an adjoining cottage, rather than in the tower.

More …..

Loop Head Lighthouse, county Clare, Ireland , Gallery


Sense of place : Cullahill Chapel and castle in County Laois, Ireland

Cullahill castle and chapel
County Laois
Ireland
Nigel Borrington

The village of Cullahill, county Laois is located just over the boarder from county Kilkenny. It is home to some great old castle tower home and village chapel remains. Cullahill Castle was the principal stronghold of the MacGillapatricks of Upper Ossory built around 1425 and destroyed around 1650.

There are many places like this in the Irish republic, that have retained the remains of long lost times, this small village located on the R369 just north of Johnstown county kilkenny, is a perfect example of the way most small Irish villages would have been in the 1400’s. this small place is well worth a visit just to get a sense of old Ireland.


Gallery


The Colosseum amphitheater, city of Rome

Images without words
The Colosseum
City of Rome
Nigel Borrington


The Colosseum amphitheater, city of Rome

Images without words
The Colosseum
City of Rome
Nigel Borrington


Skipton Waterway Festival 2017, a weekend on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

Skipton Waterway Festival
Leeds and Liverpool Canal,
Yorkshire, England
Nigel Borrington

Held every May Bank Holiday in Yorkshire, the Skipton Waterway Festival is a 3 day canal boat event which runs every year on the 1st May day Bank holiday weekend. It is an event which is a non-profit making Festival, which solely relies on donations and sponsorship from the local community. they are also organized by volunteers from Pennine Cruisers and the local community, without these people the event would not run as smoothly as it does each year.

The 1st Skipton Waterway Festival was held in 2001 and they have gone on to grow more and more each year. The festival was originally organized by CRT (British Waterways then) and Pennine Cruisers for around 5 years, however Pennine Cruisers then took on the event, as they saw how much the local boaters and town enjoyed it. As Pennine Cruisers look forward to this event each year, it is part of their year now, as they have organized it for a long time, they say that they would be a little lost without it.

As an event they attract around 8, 000 – 10,000 visitors each year over the full 3 days. It is noticed when people/families visit the festival each and every year. They put on various entertainment, stalls from craft to charity stalls, children’s activities and an array of food/concession stalls. There is something for almost everyone.

This years Festival was great to visit with many Craft stalls and lots of Local history with the new presentation of an internet based database of all the families who worked and still work on the Leeds and Liverpool canal from the first times it was open for use.

Leeds and Liverpool Canal Society


First Post after the Easter Holidays

irish national heritage park.
County Wexford
Nigel Borrington

I was only back in-front my laptop for the first time yesterday evening, uploading some of the images I captured over the Easter Holidays.

It was a great break, this year we stayed in Ireland but chose to visit many of the great locations the south east and west of the country has to offer.

The Irish National Heritage Park, was just one of these places, the Park gives you an historic journey that takes you deep into Ireland’s past, Through 9000 years of Irish History. It is a very special place where Ireland’s heritage comes alive with sights and sounds that shaped a country and helped to shape the bigger world.

Located on the banks of the picturesque River Slaney, The Irish National Heritage Park truly is the cornerstone of Ireland’s Ancient East.

With an outdoor museum depicting 9000 years of re-created Irish History situated within natural forestry & wet woodlands.

The following images are just some from the many I took on the day we visited ….


The Pantheon, Rome – in black and white and single words

The Pantheon, Rome  Nigel Borrington

The Pantheon,
Rome
Photos : Nigel Borrington

A few months back I visited Rome for a few days, I love this great city with its amazing history and people. My favourite place during this trip was the Pantheon, at some point very soon I want to post about this building in more detail, here however I want to strip this post down to the basic feelings I had on walking into this amazing space for the very first time in my life.

I am a big fan of word lists to describe personal experiences, so here goes !

The Pantheon in single words

Hight, awe, time, history, wonder, stone, granite, amazing, structure, art, architecture, human, achievement, skill, maths, space, understanding, power, time, mankind, Greek, Roman, temple, dome, circular, movement, light, time, space, years, moments, minutes, seconds, months, people, tourists, floor, roof, Walls, shapes, colour, openings, doors, markers, movement, sun, light, periods, soul, spirit, gods, existence,art, achievement, understanding, civilisation, Pantheon, Rome, Italy, life, death, memories, people, remembered, empires, lost, evolution, movement, time, love, life, people, seasons, legacy, alive, yesterday, today.

The Pantheon, Rome, a visit in space and time.

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Friday poetry : The To-be-forgotten By Thomas Hardy

Irelands History is Fading fast Nigel Borrington 05

It does not take you very long while walking around the Irish Landscape to cross paths with an old abandoned church or two. These old churches are mainly connected to the remains of long evacuated family estates and would have been originally erected as community churches for both the occupants of the estate house and the larger community.

I find these places fascinating for many reasons, a reminder of the past and times of changes around both the 1916 Easter rising and then the Irish Civil War.

I have to be honest I avoid any area of conflict (Political and religious!) in life as much as I possible can, I feel society spends too much time as it is looking back on times of trouble, war and death and wonder sometimes if this is not the very reason why we end up with future conflicts?

For me Life is too short to spend any-time waving flags on behalf of past conflicts – NO ONE WINS IN WAR!

When I come across these old churches however I just have to stop and spend sometime because the names on these grave stones were real people and many of them would have lived full lives and been great family members, loved and been loved, real people!

The To-be-forgotten
By Thomas Hardy
.

I
I heard a small sad sound,
And stood awhile among the tombs around:
“Wherefore, old friends,” said I, “are you distrest,
Now, screened from life’s unrest?”

II
—”O not at being here;
But that our future second death is near;
When, with the living, memory of us numbs,
And blank oblivion comes!

III
“These, our sped ancestry,
Lie here embraced by deeper death than we;
Nor shape nor thought of theirs can you descry
With keenest backward eye.

IV
“They count as quite forgot;
They are as men who have existed not;
Theirs is a loss past loss of fitful breath;
It is the second death.

V
“We here, as yet, each day
Are blest with dear recall; as yet, can say
We hold in some soul loved continuance
Of shape and voice and glance.

VI
“But what has been will be —
First memory, then oblivion’s swallowing sea;
Like men foregone, shall we merge into those
Whose story no one knows.

VII
“For which of us could hope
To show in life that world-awakening scope
Granted the few whose memory none lets die,
But all men magnify?

VIII
“We were but Fortune’s sport;
Things true, things lovely, things of good report
We neither shunned nor sought … We see our bourne,
And seeing it we mourn.”

Ireland’s old churches

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Callan, Kilkenny. Remembering the Workhouse and Cherryfields Grave yard.

Callan Cherryfields Graveyard _0007
Cherryfields, Grave yard for the poor of the Callan workhouse.
Photography : Nigel Borrington

Remembering the Workhouse and its uncounted and unnamed dead.

During the years between 1841 and 1922 the Callan workhouse operated as a place to house and offer support to may of the poor and fallen people who lived in the surrounding areas.

I want to share here some images and facts about both the workhouse and the associated grave yard that is located just one kilometre south of the town of Callan.

Both these site still exist today and a visit to them is both very moving and haunting.

The Workhouse now operates as a home for people with special needs and many feel that this is a great outcome considering its original use and its history.

A visit to Cherryfields Grave yard is very moving, I have included some written details below with some recent images, the thing that personally hits me the most about this place is that no one knows how many people lay at rest here as there is not one single name to be found anywhere.

My final Gallery at the bottom of the post reflects on the contrast between cherryfields and other local grave yards, where all the graves are marks with stones, the only technical difference being the level of finance you or your family possessed.

The Callan Work house

Callan Workhouse map osi maps

The Callan Union of workhouses was situated partly in Co Kilkenny and partly in Co Tipperary. It comprised an area of 106,633 statute acres with a population of 42,707.

The Callan workhouse was contracted for on May 29, 1840 and was completed in 1841.

The management of the workhouse was as follows: Master, matron, clerk chaplain, schoolmaster, porter.

It cost £5,500 to build and $1,140 to fit out. The entire complex, situated at the south end of the town, covered an area of six and a quarter acres. It was built to accommodate 600 people and its first admission took place on March 25, 1842.

Thirty-three Poor Law Guardians, elected from various areas in the Union, had overall responsibility for the workhouse.

In its first years of operation, the Callan Workhouse functioned very well, but the catastrophe of the Great Famine (1845-48) totally overwhelmed it, reducing its functions to utter chaos.
Callan workhouse 2010 2

Built, as mentioned to accommodate 600 people, it had at the height of the Famine thousands of unfortunates clamouring for admittance. Even by 1851 it was still crammed to over capacity. The census for that year lists 2,102 people as residing in it.

The statistics for the Famine in the Callan area are grim and mind-boggling. Between 1841 and 1851 a total of 1,411 people, 688 males and 723 females, died in Callan Workhouse, and 2,104, 1,050 males and 1,054 females died in the temporary fever sheds, a grand total of 3,515 people. These virtually all died during the years of 1846 to 1850.

Callan workhouse 2003 1

After the famine years, the workhouse settled back into a more normal level of operation and continued to function right up until the 1920s. In 1922 it was garrisoned by Free State troops during the Civil War.

It was later sold to private individuals and public bodies.

CherryFields Grave Yard

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on approaching Cherryfields – Callan, A plaque on a pillar at the graveyard reads: In memory of the uncounted victims of famine and poverty buried here, most of whom died in Callan Workhouse 1841-1922. The Plaque was erected in 1986 by Callan Heritage Society.

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The now disused burial ground is the resting place of those who died in Callan Workhouse and who had no family or friends to claim them.

It is located in a remote one and a quarter acre site about one and a half miles south-east of the town off the Clonmel Road in the townland of Baunta Commons.

Callan Cherryfields map osi maps

Because cherries grew three in times gone by it is still popularly known as Cherryfield.
Most of those buried in Cherryfield were victims of the Great Hunger which devastated Ireland during the 1840s. The Callan area of Co Kilkenny was severely affected by this catastrophe.

Tales have been passed down about the endless procession of funerals from the Workhouse. It is said that often up to six bodies at a time were carted out for burial, and that it was not uncommon for corpses to fall off the ‘funeral cart’ because the boreen into Cherryfield was so rough and muddy.

Originally it was intended to have a ‘pauper’s graveyard’, as the terminology of the time called it, located in less remote place as Lord Clifden proposed, but because Baunta Commons consisted of large areas of poor agricultural common land there was little problem in acquiring a cheap site.

The graveyard was crudely fenced off for many years but was fully enclosed by a wall in the 1860s. A substantial gate and entry piers were also erected at that time.

Gallery

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Contrast of Cherryfields to other local Grave yards

The surrounding areas of south Kilkenny, contain many old grave yards all of which are wonderful to visit, they hold great records of the people who lived locally and now rest in these places.

Callan Local Marked Graves 4

Callan Local Marked Graves 1

Callan Local Marked Graves 2

Callan Local Marked Graves 3


A local walk through History, Megolithic – Ring forts, Tombs and Standing stones.

A ring fort in the KIlkenny hills 5
Ring fort on the Hill, County Kilkenny
Landscape photography : Nigel Borrington

A local walk through History, Megolithic – Ring forts, Tombs and standing stones.

Last Month I posted the following two articles talking about the history of some historic remains and geology around the area where I live, on the County Kilkenny and Tipperary Boarders.

Pagan ring forts and passage tombs , From Kerry to kilkenny

Landscape and Geology around Slievenamon, county Tipperary

The image below shows the area around the mountain of Slievenamon, County Tipperary ( left ) and the foot hills that flow to the right and form the shape of an oval from the north and south of the mountain.

The Boarder between county kilkenny and Tipperary flows about half way through this image from north to south.

Slievenamon Panorama 2.

Over the last few weeks and during the summer of 2014, I want to study and post about the Stone age – Iron age, pre Christian remains that can be found in almost every one of the woods that can be seen in the above image ( Mainly visible as dark green) along with the remains on the mountain of slievenamon itself.

I have lived here in county Kilkenny for about 11 years , moving from the UK in 2003, from the very first walks I took locally it was clear that this area is full a history in the form of old buildings, farms, churches and grave yards.

The remains that interested me the most have been those of pre-Christian times, Ireland became a Christian country between 300 to 400 Ad. These local pre-Christian remains then date from betweem 300Ad to 6000 or 8000 years ago.

The remains that can be found locally take the form of (Ring forts, Graves and tombs, Standing stones and stone circles) all can be found within the area covered in the pictures above.

South Kilkenny. Woodlands

South Kilkenny. Woodlands

During last weekend and this week, I have been visiting the above woodland to the south east of the larger area I am studying and have marked on the image below the types of remains I have found :

Full woods labels

The remains that I have walk past on woodland paths and the ones that I have looked for by going deeper into the woods are by themselves amazing but by themselves do not tell you a story of who these people were and how they lived.

Over the next few weeks I want to uses four areas in total including the mountain of Slievenamon, to draw a picture of how I feel the people who built these structures lived.

How they worked this land, how they built their homes and how they buried and remembered their ancestors.

Structure of a ring fort

Structure of a ring fort

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Image Gallerys

The Images below are all pictures of the structures and remains I have found in the woodland area shown and labelled in the images above, I have split them into groups as follows:

Ring forts, these were used for – homes and cattle pens.
Standing stones, used to record time and mark areas.
Graves and tombs, Hill top Burial grounds .

One last thing worth pointing out is that below in the Grave Gallery are two large tomb cap stones, shown in the first two images.

When I first found the stone in the first image, I wondered if it could be anything more than just a large stone left from ice sheets, during the ice age some 10,000 years ago. However I then found the stone in the second image a couple of days later, both these stones are almost the exact same dimensions. It is very unlikely then that these stones can be the result of the ice age and that they are cap stones to large tombs lying underneath.

This web sites show some examples of excavated tombs from this period : Mesolithic tombs

I also have a great example of a tomb like this here : The passage tomb of olioll olum king of munster

Image gallery of the ring fort

Ring fort, marked above the woods

Ring fort, marked above the woods

A ring fort in the KIlkenny hills 1

A ring fort in the KIlkenny hills 3

A ring fort in the KIlkenny hills 4

A ring fort in the KIlkenny hills 6

A ring fort in the KIlkenny hills 7

A ring fort in the KIlkenny hills 8

Gallery of Standing stones within the woods

Standing stones 5

Standing stones 3

Standing stones 4

Standing stones 6

Gallery of Graves and Cap stones within the woods

Grave and cap stone 1

Graves and cap  stones 2

Grave and cap stone 3

Grave and cap stone 4


Samuel Coulthurst

Samual Coulthurst

Samuel Coulthurst: Victorian Salford, Manchester(UK) – (1889 – 1890)

19th Century street photography

Back in 2002 I was back home in Manchester and visited the Lowry art museum and gallery at the Salford Quays, Manchester. This exhibition has stayed in my memory ever since so I thought I would share a post about the display of work I attended that day.

During a two year period (1889 and 1990), Samuel Coulthurst and his brother-in-law James Higson both members of the Lancashire and Cheshire photography union, dressed as what was known then as rag and bone men.

They carried their camera on the back of a cart they used and took many photographs of the people they met and got to know. Many of these photographs have been archived along with details of who these people were and what they did.

They were not simply doing a street walk about with a camera but spent time both living the lives and getting to know the people of Salford.

Many for the street children that the two photographed would have attended the Charter Street Ragged School, they had either lost parents to industrial accidents or to famine or disease. In the grounds of this church owned school is a grave yard that contains 6000 such parents. The city of Manchester has many such locations from this period.

It was in such conditions that these two photographers lived and worked taking pictures that made history. Without them most people would have forgotten in part at least, the kind of live’s that the 19th century people of Manchester lived including my Own Ancestors.

The exhibition is repeated by the Lowry Gallery so if you are in Manchester and into history/photography then maybe you could call in.

Gallery:

Samual Coulthurst 1

Flat Iron Market Salford. Manchester 1890.

Samual Coulthurst 2

Swan Street, Salford Manchester 1890.

Samual Coulthurst 3

Organ Grinder – Swan Street Salford, Manchester 1890.

Samual Coulthurst 4

Tom Shudehill, Poultry Market. Manchester 1890.


Door to the underworld

Grange Crag Walk 5

Look I found a door to the underworld

    The Pagan Underworld

    “Caves have been regarded as entryways to the Underworld and as linkages to the sacred for thousands of years. It is by no accident that the world’s most beautiful rock art is located in deep caves or that tombs mimic the reality of the cave. Caves are traditionally the homes of the famous Little People—the Menehune of Hawaii, the Faery of Britain and Europe, the Rock Babies of America, all having the same descriptions, characteristics, powers and attitudes. One small cave in Yorkshire, known as the Hob Hole, is said to have been the home of a brownie (i.e. “Hob”) that could cure whooping cough. Local residents used to take their children to the cave seeking the Hob’s help with the following plea: ”

    More…

    I’m not telling anyone, I will need it for myself one day….