The main area covered by this family history web-site is north County Mayo which encompasses the towns of Ballycastle, Killala, Ballina, Crossmolina, Bangor and Belmullet. The parishes in NE Mayo are shown on the map opposite.
Definition of Townland
The smallest Irish administrative division, the townland, is the one which has proved most enduring. Loosely related to the ancient Gaelic "Bally betagh", and to other medieval land divisions such as ploughlands and quarters, townlands can vary enormously in size, from a single acre or less to several thousand acres. There are more than 64,000 in the country. They were used as the smallest geographical unit in both Tithe Survey and Griffith's, as well as census returns, and are still in use today. Anything from 5 to 30 townlands may be grouped together to form a civil parish. Many townlands share the same name - for example there are 56 Kilmores and 47 Dromores.
Baile an Ghleanna
Town of the Valley
Baile a' Chaisil
Town of the Stonefort
Baile a' Chnuic
Town of the Hill
Baile Mac Aodha
The Town of MacHugh
Ceathramhadh Mhic Lobuic
Ceathramhadh an Eadain
Quarter of the Hill Brow
Ceathramhadh an Lisge
Quarter of the Water
Baile an Chaislean
Town of the Castle
Valley of the Eagles
Abounding in Ivy
St. Bridget's Church
Cillin na Trionoide
The Little Church of Trinity
St. Eithnes Church
The Church of the Black Hill
Parc A Chnocain
Park of the Hillock
Elly's Marshy Streaf
A Small Plain
Low Lying Ground of the Hollows
*as listed at ballycastle.ie/Townland Names.htm
1838 Ordnance Survey Map of Co. Mayo This on-line map is searchable by parish or townland and contains detailed information
down to the level of individual houses and field
features and is
provided as a free
service by Mayo
Ballycastle Town (Baile an Chaisil) is situated in: Province: Connaught
Civil Parish: Doonfeeny
Poor Law Union (PLU): Killala (formed 1849)
Civil Registration (BMD) District: Killala (same as PLU)
Roman Catholic Parish: Ballycastle
Church of Ireland Diocese: Tuam, Killala & Achonry
District Electoral Division (DED) Ballycastle
Ballycastle Town was founded in 1797. The much older townland of Ballycastle is a 298 acre strip of land along the Ballinglen river at the west end of Ballycastle Town. The name, Ballycastle, has been in use since about 1470.
Killala Parish Townlands
How to find the parish and location of a Townland in County Mayo?
1. If you are sure of the spelling then click on this link and enter the Townland and County. This map has
the 1838 OS map superimposed on a Google map and, you can vary the relative visibility of each map
with the slider bar at the top right. The map should stay centered on your Townland as you zoom in (+).
Still can't find the name?
Some small villages or hamlets in Ireland do not have the status of a
Townland, so they do not appear in the searchable lists mentioned above.
If you know the parish, and preferably the Townland, then you can try
searching the 1838 O.S. map by eye. For example, the author's Golden
ancestral home is a tiny hamlet called Doughlough (meaning two lakes)
in Upper Doonfeeny Townland, in Doonfeeny parish, which is marked on
the 1838 O.S. map as Dooclogh, but it is not listed or indexed anywhere.
Change of County boundaries in 1899
The Local Government (Ireland) Act 1898 (61 & 62 Vict. c. 37) caused changes in the county boundaries between Mayo, Sligo, Galway and
Roscommon. Mayo gained some areas from Sligo and Galway, but lost
some to Roscommon. For example, Ardnaree (east Ballina) which was
in Sligo before 1899, is now in Mayo.
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