Baby beneath the thatch

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Where: Munster, Co Kerry, Ireland

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When: Unknown

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If I had been told that this was an image from one of the far flung colonies of the British Empire, rather than Glena Cottage in Killarney, that would have been credible! A very fine “cottage” with the finest thatch Morning Mary has ever seen! A fine house with picture windows, beautiful location, and a happy group where one of the women appears to be holding a baby! The Stereo Pairs Collection never fails to delight!

Photographers: Frederick Holland Mares, James Simonton

Contributor: John Fortune Lawrence

Collection: Stereo Pairs Photograph Collection

Date: between ca. 1860-1883

NLI Ref: STP_0661

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: 10720
lawrencecollection stereographicnegatives jamessimonton frederickhollandmares johnfortunelawrence williammervynlawrence nationallibraryofireland glenacottage killarney cokerry munster thatch baby family group hoopskirts kerry ireland stereopairsphotographcollection cottage thatchedroof ladykenmarescottage visitorscottage cottageorné

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    • 24/Nov/2020 09:05:59

    Seems to be referred to as 'Lady Kenmare's Cottage' in the mid-1800s Ordnance Survey first edition 6" map, but 'Glena Cottage' is also there nearby. Then the name 'Lady Kenmare's Cottage' disappears in the Cassini version of the map, 'Glena Cottage' is switched from one building to the other, and the building formerly referred to as 'Glena Cottage' is then referred to as 'Visitor's Cottage'

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    • 24/Nov/2020 09:20:23

    Great blog full of information. Queen Victoria had lunch here in 1861 etc. -

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    • 24/Nov/2020 09:23:38

    From above link - "In anticipation of the Royal visit, the cottage had been redecorated with white chintz wall paper with a floral pattern." See megazoom !! -

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    • 24/Nov/2020 09:30:58

    Also from the blog is this sad story from 1889, which is probably too late for this particular photo (?) - "Tragedy struck the inhabitants of the cottage in 1889, when a Dr. Finerty rented the cottage from Lord Kenmare. Dr Finerty and his wife, who were married a year previous, had their first child born at Glena. They had a christening party and invited a large number of people to celebrate at the cottage by the lake. A number of young men who attended the party over indulged and left the party by row boat which overturned. Among the five young men drowned, were brothers Joseph and Daniel Riordan who worked in the post office in Killarney."

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    • 24/Nov/2020 09:46:08

    Flickr is sometimes amazing. An illustration for an 1885 book 'Picturesque Ireland' via [] [] Online book -

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    • 24/Nov/2020 09:55:26

    Same day? - Edit - also at - There was an earlier(?) visit when the thatch was newer, the shutters shut, and the roses pruned - . Here is another Lawrence (with shutters shut) which I have not yet found in the catalogue. It comes from a book published in 1880, so must be before then - Edit - Found! - [I'll shut up now!]

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    John Spooner

    • 24/Nov/2020 09:59:21

    An excellent stereoscopic effect when viewed using suitable apparatus. The foreground foliage, group of people, near building and background building (on the left) all stand out from each other.

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    • 25/Nov/2020 08:10:36

    [[email protected]] Why do you think it isn't the house marked as Glena Cottage? The one in the picture seems to be L-shaped, which would match Glena Cottage. it's also consistent with []'s image showing it fronting onto the lake.

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    • 25/Nov/2020 09:20:49

    [[email protected]] Well both are basically L-shaped, both face the lake, and they are located about 220m apart. You could argue it either way, but the more complex outline of the western cottage (Lady Kenmare's first, later Glena) could still match the cottage in the photo, since it is not a straightforward 'L' as it has projecting bay windows etc. This image is useful - it shows a path curving down towards the lake from Glena Cottage - this matches the western cottage as it is shown on the first edition map: This one is also very useful - it is the same building as the cottage in our photo, and the stepped outline (the little square projection in the angle of the L that is visible in this image but not in our main photo) matches the shape of the western cottage (Lady Kenmare's first, later Glena) on the first edition map: The suggested date of the photo (1860-1883) is between the Ordnance Survey first edition map for the area (surveyed 1840) and the later map (published 1901?) and the name 'Glena Cottage' switches from the eastern cottage to the western cottage between the two maps. We're really missing the 25" map here, as the detail there could solve the issue.