The Forge

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Where: Wicklow, Ireland

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When: 01 January 1940

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Roadside forge with a beatifully shaped doorway at Enniskerry, Wicklow. This forge was built around 1855 and is still there today. See the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage for more information on this lovely building.

Date: Circa 1940

NLI Ref.: VAL 205751

Info:

Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 26891
forge blacksmith farrier enniskerry wicklow ireland 1940 1940s valentinesons smithy horseshoe backroad nationallibraryofireland jamesvalentine williamdobsonvalentine valentinephotographiccollection

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    Richard Eric

    • 04/Sep/2011 14:53:11

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/mogey Thanks for the map!

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    XPAT-Polska

    • 04/Sep/2011 16:45:24

    What a fantastic building!

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    Swordscookie

    • 04/Sep/2011 21:06:38

    And what a lovely photograph of it? I have often admired it when passing and it does look so good in this!

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    instinctive mind

    • 05/Sep/2011 00:07:14

    Nice photo. Indeed it is a lovely building. Also looks like God's Country there.

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    Peter Denton

    • 05/Sep/2011 17:57:50

    I just love the horse shoe-shaped doorway... a genius design!

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    EnniskerryHistory

    • 06/Sep/2011 16:30:06

    Great photo! You can see the old cart-wheel metal straps ready to go on the wooden wheels. That was quite a job I think, the straps were white hot and just exactly the size of the wheel. When they cooled, they shrank and pulled the wheel together tightly. This was the "New Road" constructed c.1850.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 06/Sep/2011 20:21:51

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Also known as Forge Road??

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    EnniskerryHistory

    • 07/Sep/2011 12:52:14

    Yes, locally it would be the Forge Road. When it was originally built, I think it was called the New Road or the Knocksink Road as it went through the crossroads (you can just about see) onto Knocksink, originally over a wooden bridge, and then in 1865 over a beautiful stone arch bridge (highest in Ireland for a time!) There's lot's of stuff in the Minute Books of the Guardians of Powerscourt (NLI MS 16376-79) in the 1850s regarding compensation to tenants whose land had been unsettled by the creation of a new steep bank caused by cutting the "New Road". Also a problem on the Knocksink side was tenant plots being cut in two, which wasn't considered good land management. The short answer to your question is: "Yes" :) I think the forge and house (out of shot) cost £200 to build in 1850s.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 08/Sep/2011 07:35:38

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Thanks for the short answer, but loving the long answer!! :)

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    RETRO STU

    • 15/Sep/2011 09:49:18

    [http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] Hi Peter. You may also know of this one at Multyfarnham in County Westmeath maps.google.com/maps?q=multyfarnham&hl=en&ll=53.6... It's currently used as a storage shed but there's still a lot of the old blacksmithy equipment inside. Unfortunately, the equipment is not in-situ as it had all been moved around some time in the past and inside looks a total shambles. Stuart.

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    Peter Denton

    • 17/Sep/2011 09:54:45

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Very interesting, Stuart - thank you. Perhaps that style of entrance design is uniquely Irish - I'd like to think so!

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    RETRO STU

    • 17/Sep/2011 17:35:45

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Hi Peter. A horseshoe shaped entrance for a blacksmith's forge seems so obvious it would indeed be surprising if similar designs did not exist outside Ireland !! Just remembered, the old smithy near the lower entrance to Tinker's Hill in Lucan also had a horseshoe shaped doorway but sadly that building was demolished in the 80's. Sorry, can't find any pics of it on the 'net. Stuart.

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    dear look

    • 11/Apr/2012 14:18:08

    There is another that I know of at my father's homeplace in outside Geashill in Co. Offaly: Google Street View I'd love to know how common this design was and if it can be regarded as uniquely Irish. Kieran

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 11/Apr/2012 20:20:51

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] That's absolutely gorgeous, Kieran, thanks! I'd love to know that too - still hoping more info will come in on this design...

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    Úna Wogan

    • 11/Jun/2013 20:15:51

    always known as "the back road" to us. Maybe because we lived on "the front road" on Church Hill

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 12/Jun/2013 11:10:25

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Will now be forever tagged with "back road" - thanks Úna!

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    Úna Wogan

    • 12/Jun/2013 21:34:23

    sorry

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 13/Jun/2013 17:40:23

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Please don't be sorry! We love to get local knowledge like this.

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    Úna Wogan

    • 13/Jun/2013 21:53:08

    The forge was also used by villagers to get everyday implements sharpened, scissors, garden shears, etc. I remember been sent there "on a message" for exactly that in early 1970's.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 15/Jun/2013 19:48:45

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] And thanks again for even more information! Doing "messages" is an expression I haven't heard or used in years - lovely to hear it again.

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    bobsheeran1

    • 15/Jul/2013 10:12:12

    there is a bronze axe head in the National museum,which was found when sand was been extracted from Layngs sandpit.I also have a note or account book from a forge showing work done and payments made.

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    bobsheeran1

    • 15/Jul/2013 10:19:12

    who took all the tools out of the Forge??the inside was cleared out some years ago,why??and where are they gone??is it true the Forge is owned by a person living in the USA??

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    bobsheeran1

    • 15/Jul/2013 10:20:48

    Wonder who is on the Motor bike??maybe Gerry Blackbyrne??

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    Úna Wogan

    • 16/Jul/2013 21:35:34

    I think it's a terrible shame the forge hasn't been set up as a museum "working forge". I can remember the heat, the bellows and the smell when Ben Ryder plunged the hot metal horse shoes into the water

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    StillRiverside

    • 10/Apr/2017 21:31:04

    It does seem like Ireland has the greatest number but there's one in Wales, and three in England - North Yorks (1859), Northumberland & Warwickshire.