Donkey rides at Kilkee

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Where: Clare, Ireland

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When: 01 January 1870

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Quintessential Victorian seaside in Co. Clare, complete with bathing machines, dandies and donkey rides, although this poor donkey's hooves are in sore need of trimming...

Date: 1863-1880

NLI Ref: STP_1660

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

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Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 81545
kilkee clare ireland munster beach sand strand bathingmachines currachs children umbrellas parasols bonnets hats donkeys barefoot shawlies creel stereoscopiccollection stereopairs stereographicnegatives stereoscope jamessimonton frederickhollandmares johnlawrence lawrencecollection nationallibraryofireland westend cliftonterrace westendhotel marineparade desperatebunions bunions limerickbybeachcomber donkey animal shore men woman sea seaside charlottebronte female

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    derangedlemur

    • 19/Jul/2013 07:49:04

    Looks like this is all that's left of it: maps.google.ie/maps?q=Kilkee&hl=en&ll=52.680363,-...

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    derangedlemur

    • 19/Jul/2013 08:12:39

    It looks so much nicer on the 25" than in streetview. maps.osi.ie/publicviewer/#V1,488155,660047,7,9 It's all castles (site of, in gothic script) and Moore's Hotel and what have you. You can't tell that it's just a briar patch and a dingy windswept boarding house.

  • profile

    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 19/Jul/2013 08:41:08

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Everything always looks nicer on the 25"!

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    RETRO STU

    • 19/Jul/2013 08:57:50

    Carol, so right. That poor neglected donkey, not that that ignorant peasant woman would know any different! People like her get to me.

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    guliolopez

    • 19/Jul/2013 08:57:52

    I can't imagine the genteel folk riding on that (unfortunately) tatty beast. Given the chains and harness, does it seem more likely that the unfortunate work-horsedonkey was used to move the bathing machines to and fro?

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 19/Jul/2013 09:00:28

    Is that a shillelagh between the donkey-lady's legs? (he asks innocently!)

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    O Mac

    • 19/Jul/2013 09:24:25

    She had desperate bunions, poor woman.... they surely warrant a tag!!!!....

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 19/Jul/2013 09:43:13

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] They definitely do! I was wincing looking at them. Would you mind adding yourself as a test, please? I'm still hearing murmurings about problems with tag adding...

  • profile

    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 19/Jul/2013 09:43:36

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/beachcomberaustralia There's that actress saying stuff to the bishop again! :D

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 19/Jul/2013 09:46:35

    [http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] Do you know what? That's an excellent point. Although there were definitely donkey rides at Kilkee.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 19/Jul/2013 09:48:37

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Success! Please do feel free to tag, and that goes for all of you...

  • profile

    guliolopez

    • 19/Jul/2013 09:52:35

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/beachcomberaustralia I think it's just a stick. Carrot notably absent. http://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland Indeed. There's another donkey in the background - though again possibly tethered or harnessed to bathing hut. Not saying "our" fella wasn't used for rides with the childers. Just possibly not in "current" garb :)

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    O Mac

    • 19/Jul/2013 10:05:49

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland It looks as if the sky was originally too grey and so was over exposed in "printing" the positive plate to bleach it. Chimneys are missing etc.This would have been done by the photographer cutting a piece of card to the profile of the roofs so masking the lower portion of the negative plate and then exposing the sky to more light.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 19/Jul/2013 10:06:18

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Yes, in the other Kilkee photo, the donkeys look in much better nick and with genuine saddles.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 19/Jul/2013 10:08:12

    [http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] It is as bad. You can even see it in this small lo res of the Stereo Pair.

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 19/Jul/2013 10:34:06

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Interesting - that might explain the lack of chimney bits in many of these old photos, noted by http://www.flickr.com/photos/blackpoolbeach/.

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    hockadilly

    • 19/Jul/2013 10:38:05

    Unbelievable how many clothes people are wearing for their trip to the beach. And no deodorant!

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 19/Jul/2013 11:03:01

    The Donkey @ Kilkee Limerick When strolling the sands like Kilkee's Beware of a ride on donkeys. "Come, sit on my ass", Says the elderly lass ... Just don't! - unless you like fleas.

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    guliolopez

    • 19/Jul/2013 11:14:25

    Clare Library has an extract from the 1901 census with the transcribed occupations/etc of Kilkee residents. There are three ladies with obvious ties to the bathing-machine/donkey-tourism "sector": Anne Lynch, 38, "Bathing Woman", Widow Johanna Brann, 64, Cannot Read-Write, "Owner of Bathing Boxes", Not Married Bridget Houlihan, 60, "Keep Bathing Machine", Widow What's the likelihood that "our" lady is one of these? Or a familial predecessor? (To be honest I think it's a bit tenuous myself. Given the 20 to 30 year difference from photo to census...)

  • profile

    John Spooner

    • 19/Jul/2013 13:27:25

    "It would be a matter greatly to be regretted if tourists and persons wishing to spend a holiday at Kilkee did not get every facility of visiting that charming seaside resort, the cliff scenery of which is admittedly the very finest in the world."
    ... according to a motion passed by "an influentially-attended meeting of the people of Kilkee". Well they would say that, wouldn't they? Reported in Freeman's Journal May 11 1895

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    guliolopez

    • 19/Jul/2013 16:24:16

    [http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner] RE "well they would say that". Well, this more independent 1881 text notes "Great as are the attractions of Kilkee as a bathing-place, the town owes its chief popularity to the cliff scenery [..]. These are un-rivalled in the kingdom." [http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] We've seen plenty of examples of "white-washing" the sky in these photos. I wonder whether it was more common with stereo pairs however. (I imagine it would be quite distracting from the 3D effect if the clouds/sky were "off" between each part of the pair.) Perhaps whiting-out the sky made the foreground effect more prominent. [http://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland] Remember this one? If our photographer here turned around we would be able to see the flag over the Stella Maris. Are we any closer to a date?

  • profile

    derangedlemur

    • 19/Jul/2013 18:49:01

    You might be able to date it from the houses if you can find some record of them. The weren't there in 1841 and they were by the time of the 25". They look post 1870-ish, I'd have thought. Maybe some record of the opening of the West End Hotel exists.

  • profile

    derangedlemur

    • 19/Jul/2013 18:51:26

    According to http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner on a different picture, "Other Hotels developed in the late 19th century included Moore's Hotel, West End Hotel..."

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    O Mac

    • 19/Jul/2013 21:11:36

    WEST END HOTEL, Kilkee "MRS. SHANNON begs leave to acquaint her friends and the Public, that she has fitted up her Hotel, in very Superior Style for the accommodation of Tourists and Visitors to that beautifu watering place. From the long Patronage Mrs. S. has received fiom her Friends, she expects a continuance of their support. Families requiring private apartments can be accommodated by application at Cruise's Royal Hotel, Limerick; or at West End Hotel, Kilkee. This hotel commands a magnificent view of the Cliffs, Bay, and surrounding scenery." Limerick Chronicle, 5 July 1854

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    oaktree_brian_1976

    • 20/Jul/2013 03:58:57

    Donkey needs a brushing, and a bath. Pretty shabby looking.

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    O Mac

    • 25/Jul/2013 21:28:06

    Charlotte Bronte spent most of her honeymoon in Kilkee--in July 1854-- and wrote.. "Here at our Inn - splendidly designated 'the West End Hotel' - there is a good deal to carp at, were in a carping humour - but we laugh instead of grumbling -for out of doors there is much indeed to compensate for any indoor shortcomings, so magnificent an ocean - so bold and grand a coast - I never yet saw."

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    John Spooner

    • 26/Jul/2013 06:28:19

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] I wonder if she bumped into The Lady Dowager O'Brien Freeman's Journal and Daily Commercial Advertiser (Dublin, Ireland), Thursday, July 20, 1854, in the 'Fashionable Intelligence' column: "The Lady Dowager O'Brien and Miss O'Brien, of Dromoland, are staying at the West End Hotel, Kilkee, with numerous other visitors."

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    O Mac

    • 26/Jul/2013 09:14:09

    [http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner]. Fashionable Intelligence? Hallo!! One could assume they did. Lady Charlotte O'Brien and her daughter Grace were there at the same time. I'm sure they passed pleasantrys if only a " Oh, That's gas! My name is Charlotte too! ... See. Page 28, left column, bottom paragraph www.limerickcity.ie/media/charlotte%20bronte%27s%20kilkee... I didn't realise 'tll now that Lady OBrien was the mother of William Smith O'Brien..Small world.

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 26/Jul/2013 10:37:59

    Lady Charlotte O'Brien (my gggg-grandmother!) would have had a boring time with Charlotte Brontë Nicholls - she was "grave and stern" according to Thackeray's daughter - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlotte_Bront%C3%AB#In_society There's a bit more in that limerickcity link about a murder in the hotel in 1860, which might be relevant to this photo -

    " ... An unfortunate murder took place at her hotel in the autumn of 1860, which cast a gloom over her establishment. Early in the following March, Mrs. Shannon decided to sell her hotel, but did not succeed in the end and advertised it again in 1861 and in 1863 and continued to do so until the mid-1870s, when she sold the main body of the hotel [now Gubbins' and Frawley'sl to Henry Keane and she went to live in the former part of the hotel, facing Wellington Square (now West End House), where she died c.1897 at a very advanced age. Her daughter, Mrs. Dillon, lived at West End House until her death in 1902. ..."

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    Marine Attack Squadron ( VMA ) 225

    • 27/Jul/2013 15:16:24

    Latest Photo From Kilkee From Independent.ie. Things have really changed in Kilkee !!! www.independent.ie/weather/heatwave-is-officially-over-29...

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 01/Nov/2015 22:03:12

    I have just added this photo to our 50,000+ Views Album https://www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland/sets/72157651136879037