Village of Leenane, County Galway

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Where: Galway, Ireland

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When: Unknown

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This picture of an idyllic scene, a tiny village from across a body of water with hills in the background, gives a romantic view of Ireland at the turn of the 20th century. It puts a gloss over the hardship and poverty of rural Ireland at that time. With that cheerful note, we can look forward to the end of September and the start of October at the weekend!

With subject and location already established here, some of today's investigations focused on dates. The general consensus is that (based on the family businesses pictured) the image may have been taken close to the 1901 or 1911 censuses. Perhaps even c.1906/1907 when we know the French/Lawrence were in the area seemingly overlapping with a visiting tourist bus. Whether or not we can refine it to the turn of the century, it seems likely to have been taken in the later decades of the 50-year catalogue range...


Photographer: Robert French

Collection: Lawrence Photograph Collection

Date: c.1865-1914 (though possibly c.1900 per notes)

NLI Ref: L_CAB_00346

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

Info:

Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 29118
robertfrench williamlawrence lawrencecollection lawrencephotographicstudio glassnegative nationallibraryofireland leenane connemara village bridge water leenaun countygalway killaryharbour gaynors mcdonnell lowtide carts tynan lawrencephotographcollection

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  • profile

    DannyM8

    • 26/Sep/2016 07:18:51

    Gaynors pub is still there, I do remember that the old bridge was washed away a number of years ago in a big storm.

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    philfluther

    • 26/Sep/2016 07:28:02

    Comments 3. An island, 'sea' mountains. Possibly a wall box, between mid half doors. En peat air, Gaynors.

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    B-59

    • 26/Sep/2016 07:47:07

    "Following torrential rain on 18 July 2007, the only river bridge in the village was swept away, cutting the town in half. It was part of the N59 national secondary road and had stood there for 182 years. A permanent replacement bridge was constructed with increased traffic capacity." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leenaun

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    B-59

    • 26/Sep/2016 07:52:01

    Streetview 2009 goo.gl/maps/xXQ8BVnncwR2

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 26/Sep/2016 08:22:03

    Droneview 2016 !! - youtu.be/qMxaex6_yL4 (made me giddy)

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 26/Sep/2016 08:50:04

    King Edward VII's visit to Mrs Maloney's cottage in Leenane - trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/171509561

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 26/Sep/2016 09:56:34

    There is a later photo (which needs a flip) where that twin-gabled house on the right has been rebuilt - catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000325431/Image?lookfor=http:... . Might help with dating. EDIT: Most of the other houses have been restored or had new roofs by the time of the other photo. There must have been considerable investment in the place, or a boom. The two photos are like "before" and "after" ...

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    dantheserene

    • 26/Sep/2016 13:10:23

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] It is fascinating to see a current street view next to these old photos, isn't it?

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    DannyM8

    • 26/Sep/2016 13:13:31

    1911 Census Delia McDonnell 25 years and a Publican Again perhaps her in the doorway??

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    DannyM8

    • 26/Sep/2016 13:18:49

    Tynan 1901 - Merchants Tynan 1911 - Merchants

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    guliolopez

    • 26/Sep/2016 13:24:48

    Leenaun was the home of the original Cheery Bounce (or at least the Leenaun Hotel was, about 1km west along the Clifden/Kylemore Road). As regards dates, I'm inclined to agree with [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]]'s suggestion that this is around the census years. Certainly the attire of the man in Gaynor's doorway suggests a date in the latter half (rather than earlier half) of the 1865-1914 catalogue range. The other French/Lawrence "Cherry Bounce" image from Leenaun was dated to 1906/1907. www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland/6851004167/

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    Seanieseye

    • 26/Sep/2016 17:38:03

    Leenane , the setting of J.B.Keane's Film , The Field starring Richard Harris and Brenda Fricker .. Leenane is actually situated near the end of Rep of Irelands only Fjord , so you are actually looking at salt water from Killary Fjord which is 16 km long, A beautiful place to travel . You are also only a few miles from Ashleigh Falls, ( a river and falls that flows into Killary .. ps , the Tide is out.. A great photo of old times yet the village has not changed a whole bunch. I love this place , very peaceful We Live to learn ..

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    silverio10

    • 26/Sep/2016 21:36:28

    Buenas fotos antiguas .

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 26/Sep/2016 23:15:26

    Thanks all! Have updated map/tags/description...

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    succinct oranges

    • 27/Sep/2016 04:36:15

    excellent Sans titre

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    Rom4rio Photography

    • 27/Sep/2016 10:41:35

    Great capture

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    le cabri

    • 27/Sep/2016 13:47:14

    Masterpiece

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    rich lewis

    • 27/Sep/2016 16:08:50

    lovely work

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    Betti52

    • 27/Sep/2016 19:10:30

    Fantastico panorama !!

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    BlueisCoool

    • 08/Oct/2016 16:29:45

    A wonderful black and white image!

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    Owen J Fitzpatrick

    • 26/Oct/2016 21:13:15

    Superb shot from the archives. Well done The National Library of Ireland. You guys do a fabulous job. Wonderful Flickr gallery to boot.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 27/Oct/2016 11:16:48

    Thanks https://www.flickr.com/photos/owen_fitzpatrick!

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    joemagfhionnghaile

    • 26/Aug/2020 14:27:49

    Agree with the suggestion by @DannyM8 that the Lady in the door of McDonnell's is Delia - she's the cut of her daughter. Also think the graffiti on the bridge is by Delia's brother Petie Joe (b. 1892). He was later the head of the West Connemara IRA Flying Column, but at the time of this photo, he was evidently a very bold boy.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 27/Aug/2020 06:16:05

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Joe, very interesting, please do tell us more. Mary

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    joemagfhionnghaile

    • 27/Aug/2020 09:36:57

    My Grandmother was from just outside Leenane. She moved away, but summers were all spent in Leenane for my father, uncles & aunts, from 1930s through to 1950s. My Dad & I studied the higher resolution version of this photo at catalogue.nli.ie yesterday. We guessed that the lady in the doorway could be any age between 15 and 30. In his opinion, she is "the cut of Nancy Hamilton" Nancy was a daughter of Delia McDonnell (1885-1964). We also noticed the initials PMD written on the bridge. We reckon these are almost sure to be the initials of Petie McDonnell (1891-1967). Both 1901 & 1911 censuses show there is nobody else with these initials (either PD or P McD) in Leenane or in the entire surrounding Electoral Division of Letterbrickane/Letterbrickaun. An early act of rebelliousness, maybe foreshadowing the important role that Petie would later play in the War of Independence. In terms of dating the photo: We can guess that Petie would have to be at least 8 years old to reach that spot to write legibly on the bridge. If true, this dates the photo to 1899 or a few years after that. If the lady in the doorway is Delia McDonnell (we can't be certain of this), and she looks at least 15 years old; that would date the photo to 1900 or later. The huge, neat haycock on the hill behind Gaynors suggests this was probably around September.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 31/Aug/2020 12:34:04

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Lovely story, Petie was quite a lad!