Pilgrims Starting from Pettigo, Lough Derg, Co. Donegal

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Where: Donegal, Ireland

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When: 01 January 1900

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I suppose that a pilgrimage must start somewhere and Pettigo is as good a place as anywhere! This assembly heading for the rigours of the Lough Derg island is impressive! And the assorted transport on view is a delight to the eye: charabancs, side cars, etc. All on horse power alone. Which perhaps helps us with a date?

The general consensus is that the date is perhaps c.1900 or later. Based on the fashions, buildings and other available photos of the area. Perhaps c.1890s-1910s....


Photographer: Robert French

Collection: Lawrence Photograph Collection

Date: Catalogue range c.1865-1914. Almost certainly in the last decade of two of that range (fashions/buildings/etc).

NLI Ref: L_ROY_10811

You can also view this image, and many thousands of others, on the NLI’s catalogue at catalogue.nli.ie

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Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 6962
robertfrench williamlawrence lawrencecollection lawrencephotographicstudio thelawrencephotographcollection glassnegative nationallibraryofireland pettigo donegal pilgrimage loughderg charabancs sidecars ulster pettigoe paiteagó floodshotel brennans locationidentified

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 29/Apr/2019 07:37:36

    Wonderful photo! A large number of those people are staring directly at the camera: did Mr French shout "CHEESE!" ?

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 29/Apr/2019 07:51:04

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/beachcomberaustralia Given that they were about to embark on a weekends fasting shouting "Cheese" might have been a bit too cruel in the circumstances?

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    Niall McAuley

    • 29/Apr/2019 07:58:49

    They are at the then train station. 25" map. Per eiretrains: Pettigo, Co.Fermanagh, is located on the former Great Northern Railway's branch line to the well known coastal resort of Bundoran, built in June 1886 and unfortunately closed in November 1957 EDIT: Per Fred Dean's comment below, it seems eiretrains has the wrong date here, and the station actually opened in 1868.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 29/Apr/2019 08:13:10

    The conveyance on our left is labelled Flood's Hotel. Here is Daniel J. Flood, Hotel Proprietor in the census of 1901 and 1911.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 29/Apr/2019 08:17:36

    The bus on our right is labelled Brennans Pettigoe. There are no Brennans at all in the 1901 census in Pettigoe, and none who look to be running charabancs in 1911.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 29/Apr/2019 08:22:24

    Floods was in Pettigo after the latest date of this one, the DIA has alts for J. Flood in 1915 and 1919.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 29/Apr/2019 08:33:32

    I think we may be right at the end of the date range. There's a John Brennan, farmer's son, over in Mount Charles in 1911. He gets married in 1913, and gives his occupation as Driver.

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    mym

    • 29/Apr/2019 08:41:16

    That ensemble of houses on both side of the road to the left of the bridge are still there - everything is very obstructed near the river though. Lots of cheap nasty later building and embankmenting. goo.gl/maps/krg8BMMspmE1hgSj8

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    Niall McAuley

    • 29/Apr/2019 08:44:30

    L_CAB_04682 is a view up the same street but from the hill behind the station. The station looks new, and the bridge has a lot of ivy. The first building by the river is a smaller thatched affair. Definitely much earlier. [https://www.flickr.com/photos/abandonedrailsireland]

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    Niall McAuley

    • 29/Apr/2019 08:51:40

    Flood's Red Lion Hotel in L_CAB_04682, not in shot here.

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    abandoned railways

    • 29/Apr/2019 09:07:10

    Pettigo station opened on 13.06.1866, closed entirely on 01.10.1957. It was on the Enniskillen & Bundoran Railway line that opened in 1866.

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    mcginley2012

    • 29/Apr/2019 18:51:54

    The elderly relatives told me that the old pilgrimage to Lough Derg began in Clogher outside Donegal Town. Their grandparents generation would do the journey over the mountain barefoot.

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 29/Apr/2019 22:22:20

    Via Trove, a contemporary (1908) description . . . "... This far-famed Irish shrine opens for the admission of pilgrims on the 1st day of June, and closes on the 15th August every year. The shrine, so dear to Irish Catholics, who justly claim it as a national heritage, affords, besides the penitential exercises of great austerity, a short spiritual retreat that is greatly prized by those who have had the privilege of making it. The pilgrimage has grown in recent years so much into favour with its votaries that notwithstanding the annual improvements and additions made for their accommodation, the resources of the place are often severely taxed. There is a large hospice on the island under the direction of the Prior, and over which a matron presides. A much-needed guests' house has recently been added for the reception of pilgrims, who are here accommodated before they begin their Station, and after they have completed the exercises. Heretofore those pilgrims, many of whom made long journeys by rail, were obliged to spend the night before entering on the Station in the village of Pettigo; now all can be easily provided for on the island; but, where possible and convenient, notice should be given of their intended visit. Sometimes pilgrims travel in large bodies; in all such eases arrangements for their reception should be made by communicating with the Prior, the Very Rev. Canon Smyth, who resides on the island during the time of the pilgrimage, and who will willingly give any information intending pilgrims may need. Most of the railway companies. if applied to, will give special terms to those who travel in considerable numbers. ... " From - trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/169898164

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    Niall McAuley

    • 30/Apr/2019 05:27:28

    The fashions mostly don't give much away, but there is one lady in the central bus wearing a huge hat (noted) which I think is late in the date range.

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    abandoned railways

    • 30/Apr/2019 08:25:29

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/gnmcauley The GNR absorbed the E&BR in 1896 and upgraded the station and infrastructure, maybe that is why it looks so new.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 30/Apr/2019 08:34:29

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/abandonedrailsireland] Thanks Fred... in that shot L_CAB_04682 of the fresh looking station, I see a wagon marked GNR poking out of the goods shed at left. In L_ROY_10833, the distant buildings and signs match today's Pilgrimage shot (e.g. the Jones' Sewing Machines sign) but the station has had some work, and the trees have grown maybe 10 years. So if the GNR shot is 1896, today's is definitely nearer the end of the date range.