Knocka Castle, Templemore, Co. Tipperary

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Where: Tipperary, Ireland

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When: Unknown

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Back to County Tipperary once more - but to the North Riding this time. Knocka Castle in ruins near Templemore looks to have been once a great house with a Norman tower nearby for refuge (perhaps in case the Whiteboys or Moonlighters come calling). Templemore, which we now associate with law and order was a place of much violent action during the "Troubles" including the burning down of castles - but this ruins seems to date from well before that!

Based on today's contributions, we learned a bit more about the two structures captured here by French. In the foreground, according to the 19th century OSI maps. is Knockagh House. And in the background is Knockagh Castle. We learned that (per sharon.corbet) the older Norman-era(?) tower house in the background still stands. But that the house in the foreground, which had seemingly been in ruin for at least a century prior, was (per Carol Maddock) fully demolished in the early- or mid-20th century.

Photographer: Robert French

Collection: Lawrence Photograph Collection

Date: between ca. 1865-1914

NLI Ref: L_CAB_08292

You can also view this image, and many thousands of others, on the NLI’s catalogue at


Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 20869
robertfrench williamlawrence lawrencecollection lawrencephotographicstudio glassnegative nationallibraryofireland knockacastle templemore northriding troubles burnings countytipperary castle ruin tower knockaghcastle drom knocka barna towerhouse locationidentified lawrencephotographcollection

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    • 06/Sep/2016 08:23:08

    Streetview 25" OSI Interesting that the tower has survived, but the house appears to be completely gone now.

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    • 06/Sep/2016 08:38:17

    Probably no surprise as this was taken over 100 years ago and the derelict house would not have improved with time and weather?

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    • 06/Sep/2016 08:45:19

    I presume that as with every big house ruin in Ireland before the '20s, they forgot to put the fire guard up one evening.

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    • 06/Sep/2016 08:49:01

    On the Duchas website is the following information apparently gathered by children attending the Christian Brothers school. "Knocka Castle is about 2 miles from Templemore. There is a supposed Sacred Room in Knocka Castle, one of the most ancient buildings in the parish of Templemore. There was a large quantity of Irish treasures and ancient Irish books which were stolen by Cromwell, a suit of arms was also found and a picture of Cromwell and a frame of gold were found and sent to the British Museum. There is a secret passage from Knocka Castle to Barnane Castle where our priest often hid when they were persecuted for their religion." How many secret passages can there be in the one island????

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    • 06/Sep/2016 08:52:23

    A description of Knockagh Castle: but nothing about its history.

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    • 06/Sep/2016 08:53:25

    The internet seems full of stuff about Morres, who owned it, but nothing on the fate of the building.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 06/Sep/2016 09:46:13

    The house was already a ruin on the 1840 6" map

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    Carol Maddock

    • 06/Sep/2016 12:26:18

    From the Irish Independent on Saturday, 3 May 1919 - an advert for auction of the most "Fertile Lands" in Tipperary for fattening cattle:

    No. 1 Lot (adjoining Knockagh Castle) contains 117 Acres 3 Roods and 37 Perches, all in ancient pasture, with plentiful supply of water, well fenced in convenient fields and well sheltered. There is a valuable Grove of Timber on this Lot.
    And from the Nenagh Guardian on Saturday, 28 July 1962:
    Knockagh Castle: Situated 1 and a half miles west of Drom, is circular in shape and well preserved. A large building partly demolished in recent years by the occupier of the land, lies close to the south of the castle. These structures were erected by the Morress family of Knockagh and Latteragh in Upper Ormond.

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    • 06/Sep/2016 12:57:11

    There was a young lady from Knocka ...

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    Melinda Young Stuart

    • 06/Sep/2016 13:14:51


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    Dún Laoghaire Micheál

    • 06/Sep/2016 13:38:20

    Given the choice between safe access to good grazing and preserving an old ruin, It'll be no surprise which option most Irish cattle ranchers would select.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 06/Sep/2016 22:25:13

    Thanks all! Bualadh bos all around for input on location and the extra info on Knocka/Knockagh house and castle. Description, tags, map, etc are all updated. Haven't decided yet, but - to mark the week that's in it - we may keep the focus on the Premier County for one day more tomorrow....

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    • 07/Sep/2016 18:26:40

    "The black and white maps of the cows"*, for scale? *A. L. Rowse

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    • 24/Oct/2021 14:54:49

    Has anyone any information on the family that owned it.

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    • 24/Oct/2021 14:55:22

    Looking for any information on the house or the Maher family.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 25/Oct/2021 13:06:31

    [] Have a look at the two links below. There are 71 people with the Maher name from Templemore in the 1901 Census There are 72 people with the Maher name from Templemore in the 1911 Census

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    • 15/Jan/2023 21:28:28

    Hi All, This outter section was taken by town people after the troubles and built many buildings in templemore town such as the town hall .. my family own this many years now