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A Brief History of Carlingford

The Vikings invaded Ireland in the 9th Century and historical records tell us that they occupied Carlingford Lough. The very name Carlingford is Scandinavian translating into ‘Fjord of Carlinn’. They may have used the sheltered natural harbour of Carlingford as a temporary base though this is speculation as no factual evidence, apart from the name, has been recovered so far. 

The Normans arrived in Ireland in 1169 as allies of an Irish King Dermot MacMurrough. By 1184 they had made their way to Carlingford. A Norman Knight, John de Courcy claimed this part of Louth for himself.

The very first historical reference to Carlingford that we know of dates to 1184 when he gave the rights of the ferry at Carlingford to the Abbot of Downpatrick which indicates that the harbour or somewhere near it was in use as a ferry point. However, the town of Carlingford only developed after the castle known as King John’s Castle was built, reputedly by Hugh de Lacy son-in-law of Bertram de Verdun who had been assigned the territories taken from John de Courcy by Henry II.

Lorcán Ó Muireadhaigh (1883–1941) was an Irish Roman Catholic priest, Irish language educator and nationalist activist. Another Gaelicisation of his name (as per the Ulster Biography) is Lorcan Ó Muireadhaigh

Lorcán Ó Muireadais

Lorcán Ó Muireadhaigh Lorcán Ó Muireadhaigh (1883–1941) was an Irish Roman Catholic priest, Irish language educator and nationalist activist. Another Gaelicisation of his name (as per the Ulster Biography) is Lorcan

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Carlingford Castle

Carlingford Castle

Carlingford Castle dominates the skyline of Carlingford town overlooking Carlingford Lough. It was a vital point of defence for the area for centuries as it

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The Thosel

The last remaining of the four town gates into Carlingford and one of a few extant in Ireland. It stands at the entrance to Tholsel

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The Mint

Although the right to mint coinage was granted to Carlingford in 1467 it is unlikely that the building was used as a mint. This three

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Town Wall

In 1326 Edward II granted a charter to the Bailiffs of Carlingford to levy a murage (wall tax) for the building of a town wall.

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The Watch House

The size, the shape and the thickness of the walls indicate that this building was originally a medieval town house but what really gives it

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Thomas D’Arcy McGee

Thomas D’Arcy McGee, politician, journalist, poet, historian (born 13 April 1825 in Carlingford, Ireland; died 7 April 1868 in Ottawa, ON). Thomas D’Arcy McGee’s political

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