Churches & Cemeteries
There are five cemeteries in the Parish of Myshall, three in the village itself, one about a mile out the Carlow Road and the fifth in Drumphea about two miles from the village. These are an ideal base for tracing one’s ancestry. A couple of monuments or slabs are worth noting. A memorial slab set in the wall of the ruined St. Finian’s church commemorates the ancestors of Peter Fenelon Collier.
Some of the memorials in the cemetery surrounding the church at Drumphea are very old with that of James Nolan, dying at the age of 112 and Captain of the local United Irishmen in 1798, one of the most commanding. On special Cemetery Sundays during the summer months local people gather to remember their ancestors and loved ones who sleep their last sleep in the local graveyards.
ADELAIDE MEMORIAL CHURCH & CEMETERY
(Church of Ireland)
The Adelaide Memorial Church of Christ the Redeemer is an architectural gem. Its origins are traced back to a love story which ended in tragedy. It replaces an earlier Church of Ireland building dating from 1811.
Miss Constance Eugenie Duguid, a daughter of an English businessman, visited her sister in 1887 at her home in Myshall. Her sister was married to the curate of Fenagh and Myshall and resided in Myshall Glebe. Constance became engaged to a member of the Brady family who lived in Myshall Lodge but before the happy event took place she was thrown from her horse and died soon afterwards. She was buried in the hillside churchyard close to the mountains and open countryside she loved. Later her parents erected over her grave a marble copy of a statue of Innocence which she admired when on holidays in Italy. A few years later her mother died and by her wish was buried alongside her daughter.
CHURCH OF THE HOLY CROSS & CEMETERY (Roman Catholic)
There are no positive records of the date of this building but indirect proofs from some letters of Robert Cornwall, landlord of Myshall, to his Uncle Sam Faulkner of Castletown, Carlow show it to have been established in or about 1776. He granted the site for the “Chappel” and even though it was a swamp that was a great concession on the part of a landlord in those times. It was built in the form of a cross and in 1888 even the football club at the time wore this cross on their jerseys, calling themselves “Myshall Crusaders”.
DRUMPHEA CHURCH & CEMETERY (Roman Catholic)
The present church at Drumphea was built in 1810 on the foundations of an earlier church which is believed to have resembled St. Finian’s Church, Myshall. This church (as well as that in Myshall) was presented with a chalice in 1397 by the mother of Roger Mortimer, heir apparent to the throne of England. Roger was killed in the Battle of Kellistown that same year and the chalices were given for the return of his body.
The belfry was built in 1900 and the grotto to Our Lady was erected in 1954. The graveyard in Drumphea was bequeathed by the Earl of Bessborough for the use and benefit of the tenants of his estate free gratis.
LISMACONLY CEMETERY (Roman Catholic)
Lismaconly Cemetery is situated more than half a mile outside Myshall village on the Carlow Road. It is one of five in the Parish – Adelaide Memorial Church Cemetery, Church of the Holy Cross Cemetery, and St. Finian’s Church Cemetery (known locally as the ‘old graveyard’), all located in the village and Drumphea (which is about two miles distant). Lismaconly Cemetery opened in 1912 and the remains of more than one thousand people are now buried there.
ST. FINIAN'S CHURCH & CEMETERY
The area was originally evangelised in the 5th century by St. Foirtcheirn, a grandson to Lasire High King of Ireland at the time of St. Patrick. Foirtcheirn had been Bishop of Trim, Co. Meath but left his See to take part in the conversion of the country. A ruined pre-Norman church, called after St. Finian b. 454 and a student of Foirtcheirn, stands almost opposite the Catholic Church of the Holy Cross. Finian known as “The tutor of the Saints of Ireland” was a native of Myshall. Later an angel led Finian to a spot beside the river Boyne, Clonard, Co. Meath where he founded one of the “greatest schools in Ireland” and where he died about the middle of the sixth century. But Myshall remembers her son with pride and honours him as one of the famous men of Ireland.