Island and did a whistle stop tour of Deer Island where there were two
cholera graves. We were only able to read one of them but very clearly is
The 2nd photo shows the one-teacher school on Coney Island.
It was a fantastic day out with weather and tidal conditions been perfect.
Clare Roots Society Secretary
Saturday, May 12th, 2012, dawned bright and sunny. This was perfect weather for the planned outing to Coney Island in the Shannon Estuary by Clare Roots Society members who wished to transcribe the graves in the old churchyard there. Eight people departed from Crovraghan pier at 9 a.m. along with local man Fintan Ginnane in his boat "Saoirse". These included Mary Hester, Fiona de Buitleir, Liam Barry, Frank Barry, Clara Hoyne, Larry Brennan and Eric Shaw.
On arrival at the island, the group made their way though the old street of houses, abandoned since the last islanders left in the 1970s, and past the one-teacher school that had been built in 1937, up a long incline of about a mile to the ruined Church and began to map, photograph, transcribe the gravestones. They recorded and mapped all the gravestone inscriptions, about 12 in total. Apart from one ancient Bullaun Stone, the earliest date found on the stones was 1858.
The group then climbed to the highest point of the island to see the monument erected to the memory of Captain John Foster Fitzgerald, who was killed in a cavalry charge in the Punjab in 1848. The views included the spires of Ennis Cathedral and St. Flannan's College away to the east, Shannon Airport and the Kerry hills.
Fintan Ginnane had informed the group that there were two flagstones on Deer Island. The group moved across to this island, found the stones and captured one fine inscription of 1832. This proved the link with the grave being that of a cholera victim. The other stone was weathered and no inscription could be found. It was interesting to visit another of the Estuary's islands.
The group left the second island on a high tide and were back 'on the mainland' in time for lunch.
The gravestone recordings are being transcribed and will be presented to Clare Library to go online in accordance with CRS policy. Watch out for these transcriptions which will also be published on www.clarelibrary.ie