March, 2008 - Work continues
By Marian Crowley Chamberlain
Crowley Castle Restoration Continues at Ahakeera
Although the Crowley Clan has been in West Cork since the thirteenth century, “O’Crowley’s Castle” near Dunmanway was built around 1500. At that time the Crowleys were said to be able to muster 80 horsemen and 60 foot soldiers which gives some indication of their power as a clan. But the castle was either abandoned or destroyed. When the Cork Antiquarian Society visited in 1924, they recorded that the north wall was 45 feet high, and parts of the east and west walls could still be seen.
Since 1924 there has been further deterioration of the castle walls. Last spring the Crowley Clan Council decided to take action to stabilize and repair this symbol of our heritage. At our Crowley Clan Gathering last fall, we were able to visit the castle site and see the work done to date. Two-thirds of the wall had been cleaned and grouted. The results were dramatic. The castle’s shape and detail were much more visible. Past Taoiseach Liam Crowley and current Tanaiste Jer Crowley have been overseeing the work.
They report that stonemason Robert Rohu is currently working on the third and final stage.
The total cost of the restoration is €33,000, and Mr. Rohu is due €10,000 on completion. The work has only been able to go forward because of generous loans made to the project by members of the Crowley Clan Council. These loans will be repaid through contributions made to the Crowley Castle Project.
Send contributions to your country representatives who are listed on page three. Please be generous and remember that we are preserving this site for the future generations of Crowleys. All contributions, large or small, are welcome.
The Crowley Clan Newsletter, Marian Crowley Chamberlain, March 2008