"TRALEE, a borough, assize, sea-port, market and post-town, and a parish, in the barony of TRUGHENACKMY, county of KERRY, and province of MUNSTER; 58¼ miles (W. N. W.) from Cork, and 151 (S. W. by W.) from Dublin; containing 11,021 inhabitants, of which number 9568 are in the town. Its ancient name Traleigh, "The Strand of the Leigh," is derived from its situation near the point at which the river Leigh discharges itself into the broad sandy bay of Tralee.
The parish contains 4393½ staute acres, as applotted under the tithe act: it is intersected by the small rivers Ballymullen and Leigh, which unite just before they fall into the strait or haven at the western entrance of the town. The soil is in general of superior quality, and chiefly in tillage; the system of agriculture is gradually improving: it contains some mountain pasture and shallow bog. Limestone and black marble are found within its limits.
The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Ardfert and Aghadoe, and in the patronage of Sir Edw. Denny: the tithes amount to £408. 7. 7.
The church, which was enlarged in 1819 by a loan of £2450 from the late Board of First Fruits, and more recently by a fund raised by subscription and sale of the pews, is a large and and handsome structure with a square tower surmounted with pinnacles. In the R. C. divisions the parish is the head of a union or district, comprising also the greater part of the parishes of Annagh, Clogherbrien, and Ratass : the chapel is a spacious and hadsome edifice, the entrance to which from the High-street is through a fine avenue bordered with trees. A convent for nuns of the order of the Presentation, established about 12 years since, has a small chapel attached to it. There are places of worship for Calvinistic Independaents and Wesleyan Methodists."
[From A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland by Samuel Lewis (1837)]