MAGHERACLOONY, a parish, in the barony of FARNEY, county of MONAGHAN, and province of ULSTER, 2½ miles (S. W.) from Kingscourt, on the confines of the counties of Louth, Cavan, and Meath, and on the mail coach road from Dublin to Londonderry; containing 8444 inhabitants. On the verge of this parish, at the ford of Bellahoo, a battle was fought in 1539, between the Lord Grey and O'Nial and O'Donell; at the same spot one was also fought by Gen. Ireton. The parish comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 12,952 statute acres (including 336½ under water) principally good arable and pasture land; there are a few detached bogs, and some extensive plantations, but scarcely any waste land. Of late years the land has been much improved by extensive draining and the large quantity of lime used as manure; limestone is abundant in the southern part; coal of indifferent quality is also found. A branch of the river Leggan bounds the parish for about four miles on the south-west: the principal lakes are those of Fea, Feo, Rahans, and Graghlone, besides which there are some smaller. The principal seats are Lough Fea Castle, the residence of Evelyn J. Shirley, Esq., a spacious and handsome structure in the Elizabethan style of architecture, situated in a richly planted demesne, including Lough Fea within its limits; Derry, of S.
Pendleton, Esq.; and Coolderry, of G. Forster, Esq.
The living is a vicarage, in the diocese of Clogher, and in the patronage of the Bishop; the rectory is impropriate in Col. Moore. The tithes amount to £1116.13.4., of which £686.13. 4. is payable to the impropriator, and £430 to the vicar. The glebe-house, erected in 1816, cost £941. 10. 9¼., of which £323. 1. 7. was a gift, and £415. 7. 8½. a loan, from the late Board of First Fruits, the residue having been supplied by the incumbent; the glebe comprises 40 acres, valued at £60 per annum.
The church is a neat modern structure, built in 1835, at an expense of £738. 9. 2¾., being a loan from the same Board. The R. C. parish, is co-extensive with that of the Established Church, and has chapels at Rocks and Corlan; the latter, a spacious oblong structure, 90 feet by 40, was erected in 1825, and has a burialground attached: the site was given by E. J. Shirley, Esq., who contributed £25 towards the building. The parochial school is aided by the incumbent; the schoolhouse is a good slated building, erected at an expense of £150, part of which was a grant from the lord lieutenant's school fund. There are two other schools, to each of which Mr. Shirley contributes £5 per ann., and one under the National Board; also 16 private schools.
from Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837.