The Parliamentary Gazetteer 0f Ireland, 1844-1845 Vol.1

BALLYMAGARVEY, a parish, formerly in the barony of Upper Duleek, but now in that of Lower Duleek, 6 miles south of Slane, co. Meath, Leinster. Area, 915 acres. Pop , in 1831, 132; in 1841, 104. Houses 14. But the ecclesiastical parish is much more extensive. Area, 2,267} acres. Pop, in 1831, 401. The surface is drained eastward by one of the head streams of Nanny Water, and traversed northward by the road from Dublin to Slane and Londonderry; and it partakes of the general luxuriance of the baronies of Duleek. The demesne of Ballymagarvey is small but well situated.


Adjacent to it on the cast, at the intersection of a cross road with the main line of thoroughfare, is the hamlet of Balrath, the site of a post office. The neat villas of Balrath, Snugborough, and Mullaghfin; and, above all, the plantations, demesne, and handsome seat of Sir William Somerville, Bart., in the vicinity of the hamlet, are pleasing features in the landscape. The last, however, is quoad civilia in Kentstown, and the others in a detached district of Piercetown This parish is a vicarage, and part of the benefice of Kentstown, in the dio. of Meath. Vicarial tithe composition, £50; glebe, £10 12s. 6d.; vicarial tithe composition of the townlands of Walterstown, and Branganstown, in the parish of Galtrim, payable to the vicar, £35. The rectorial tithes are compounded for £90, and are impropriate in six different parties, but, in 1837, were held in lease by Mr. John Finley, of Kentstown.

The Roman Catholic chapel has an attendance of 600; and, in the Roman Catholic parochial arrangement, is united to the chapel of Painstown. In 1834, the Protestants amounted to 22, and the Roman Catholics to 391; and a hedge school at Black Lion was attended by about 20 children.

Ballymagarvey House

Ballymagarvey House at Balrath, Navan was described by Casey and Rowan as a two-storey gabled house of mid to late 18th century with a later 19th century square porch. There was a good number of outbuildings and a walled garden. The main avenue went by the graveyard with a secondary avenue from the Dublin road. In 1836 the house was occupied by Mrs. Osborne. Nearby stood the Blacklion public house which took its name from the sign over the door.

In the 1850s the house was held by Rev. Charles Osborne and some of the land was held by Margaret Osborne. The house was occupied by Euphemia E. Hodson. In 1887 Balfour Stewart, a Scottish physicist died at his home at Ballymagarvey. His first studies were in the field of radiant heat and he later became director of Kew Observatory. In 1870 he became professor of physics at Owens College, Manchester. Robert Edward Going lived for a number of years at Ballymagarvey. His eldest son, John, was born at Ballymagarvey in 1890 and went on to serve in the Sudan.

In 1911 the Ainsworth family were living at the house. Today the house provides a luxury venue for weddings, conferences and other gatherings. There are also seven restored cottages in the courtyard. Set on 107 acres of parkland, the house also provides nine luxurious rooms.


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