Longford, Ireland Farrell Points of Interest
The following is the Farrell Clan’s genealogist, Harry Farrell’s, recent reply to a query from someone seeking information on Farrell places of interest to see while visiting the Longford area:
“The information I usually give to Farrell visitors when they call to my place of work, includes the following:
I suggest you visit the Cathedral in Longford town where one will find the old Baptismal Font in the left hand entrance porch in which so many thousands of Farrells were baptised over the years. A Thomas Farrell left money in his will which went towards the cost of this font. In recent years it has been replaced by a modern one in front (and to the left) of the main altar. Also in the Cathedral one will find a succession of Bishops list in the right hand entrance porch, dating from St. Mel, and it contains many Farrell Bishops on the list. Other Farrell features include a plaque at the side of the altar on the left of the main altar, recording the donation by a Patrick Farrell from Argentina who sponsored this altar. A celebrated Farrell sculptor from Co. The Town is credited with sculpting the statute of Our Lady on this altar, and he also created the beautiful creation on the front of the altar in the mortuary chapel (on right of main altar) as one exits side door. Two of the very decorative stained glass windows in the Cathedral were paid for by Farrells – one can read the inscription at the bottom of each. It’s really a magnificent Cathedral.
Other Farrell items in town include Eamon Farrell’s pub where the Clan committee meet. The local newspaper, for which I work, was founded by the late J.P. Farrell in 1897. I’m 50 years with the Leader this year. The tourist office is situated in the centre of Dublin Street, and is an attractive building. There is also a heritage centre to look up your Roots (at a charge!) but sadly the best place to visit is the local library and it closes at lunch time.
Also in Longford town, the bridge over the River Camlin at the end of the town’s Main Street one can observe that it is dedicated to the late P.M. Farrell (a local solicitor and former council chairman). And just beyond the bridge is the Military Barracks where the British set up in the 1700s. Here one could ask permission to view the old Market House which was part of the original Farrell settlement, which was there long before the town of Longford was established. Just up the road from the Barracks is St. John’s Church and graveyard which stands on grounds connected with a Dominican Abbey set up with the Farrell’s permission in the 1400s and where two Farrell monks were martyred by Cromwell’s men in the 1600s.
Three places worthy of a visit outside of town are the following:
The ruin of the Cistercian Monastery at Abbeylara which was associated with the Farrells and many Farrells held the position of Abbot over the years. (To get there one must travel to Edgeworthstown, then on to Granard, and a short trip to Abbeylara.
Moatfarrell and the mound which is believed to be the inauguration site where Farrell Clan members elected their chieftains in the past. Difficult to find and one would need a county map.
Moydow old Cemetery where one can view the headstones of the many Farrell Chieftains and not far from which is the ruins of Morning Castle where they lived. Moydow is only about five miles from town and you proceed out over the railway bridge towards Lisduff hill (turn left about a mile and a half out of town) up a steep hill and from there to Moydow – all the time remaining on the same road. The Castle ruins are on straight – same road – no turning until the castle comes in view.
The ruins of the Cistercian Monastery at Abbeyshrule which was associated with the Farrells and many Farrells held the position of Abbot over the years. If you visit Abbeylara, then there is no need to visit this one.”