Interesting Facts

 

[1] Although Durrow only truly established itself in medieval times it is said that St. Benedict was born in Durrow Co. Laois around the year 460 A.D.

[2] Legend decrees that while on a visit to Rome, St. Benedict briefly succeeded St. Hormisdus as Pope before homesickness bade him to order another election, allowing him to return home, and the new Pontiff elected was Pope John Paul 1.

[3] Castle Durrow was built in 1716. This was the home of the Flower family, to whom most if not all of the inhabitants of Durrow were under patronage.

[4] Durrow was once known as Darmhagh Na nDuach (Plain of the Oaks) because of the great oak forests which surrounded the village, until in Elizabethan times, when much of the timber was cut for building purposes.

[5] The infamous highwayman, Captain Jerimah Grant and his accomplices made great use of these dense forests to evade arrest. Eventually their luck ran out and after capture and trial, they were hanged in Maryborough (Portlaoise) in August of 1816.

[6] The Cholera Field on the Swan Road is the burial place for the unfortunate victims of the 1832 cholera epidemic. This field has been recently marked by the erection of a memorial stone.

[7] Durrow was part of County Kilkenny from 1670 until it’s restoration to the then Queen’s County in 1846.

[8] The Durrow Brick Company was established in 1890, and flourished for a time until its eventual demise and the dismantling of the works at Attanagh in 1922.

[9] In the early 1800’s Durrow could also boast a carpet factory which was established on the Barn Hill, by Robert Flower and Lord Be Vesci. This factory was re-located in Abbeyleix after a few years, and one of it’s carpets was fitted on the Titanic which sank in 1912.

[10] The town of Durrow was lit by electricity for the first time in 1929 but it would be after 1960 before every household would acquire the facility.

[11] After a public meeting in 1951 it was decided to re-name George’s Street as Carrigan Street and Queen’s Street became Mary Street.

[12] Although the erection of the Catholic Church began in 1836, it wouldn’t be until 1904 that the four spires would finally be fitted to complete the building.