Friday, November 1, 2013

Sepia Saturday - Nov 2

Sepia Saturday

201 : Houses are such an important part of all our lives, be they big or small, stone or wood, brick or turf. So this week we celebrate our ancestral homes in old photographs.

Before my grandparents moved to Mourne Rd they lived at 62 Ballybough.

The term Bailebough in Irish is derived from the 'Baile' Town and 'Bocht' meaning 'poor'. 

62 Ballybough Rd, Dublin 3, Ireland

 My uncle had taken me there in 1991 and I got this photo.
I also found the electoral records for 1939-40 showing my grandparents living there. In 1938 my father would have been 12 years old.

My grandfather, Thomas on the right and it appears to be taken outside 62 Ballyboough. I don't know who the man on the left is, but he looks like an older version of one of my uncles, so perhaps a grand-uncle?

Here is a current street view courtesy of Google and Snagit.

I don't know if they lived anywhere else before they moved to Mourne Road in Drimnagh.

Drimnagh is bounded by the Crumlin Road, starting at Sundrive Road junction and continuing along Drimnagh Road to the Halfway House, and then around by Lansdowne Valley to the Canal, along Davitt Road to Suir Bridge and along Parnell Road to Herberton Bridge and Herberton Road junction with Crumlin Road.

258 Mourne Rd, Dublin 12, Ireland

In the early to mid-nineteen thirties Associated Properties began building houses in the area of Drimnagh adjacent to Lansdowne Valley. Sometime in the mid to late nineteen thirties Dublin Corporation undertook a massive housing programme in order to alleviate the overcrowding and bad housing conditions which then existed in Dublin's Inner City.

The first of the local authority houses built by 1940 had been allocated to families from condemned inner city tenements or from other over-crowded conditions.
My grandparents got this house as part of the Dublin Corporation (Corpo) programme. many years later the corporation sold these houses to the tenants and my grandmother bought it.

This is as the house looks now. I snagged this photo from Google maps.

My Dad lived in this house, on Mourne Road in Drimnagh, and my aunt Leila, his only sister still lives in today.
I am guessing that Dad would have been at least 13 or fourteen when they moved here. Leila was a baby. 

Our Lady of Good Counsel Church (built in 1943) was across the street and played a huge part in my grandmother's life. My father always complained bitterly that she spent more time over there taking care of the priests than she did for her children.

Most of my aunts and uncles were married from this church as my mother had grown up down the street. My parents were married in this church.

Leila, my uncle Tommy and my grandmother.

This is Dad standing in the doorway, I would guess around 1950.

My aunt Leila grew up here and when she married she moved in with her mother. My grandfather was living in England having gone there during the war to find work (or so my grandmother always said). Leila and her husband Tony had three daughters and two sons in this house. It must have been very crowded.

Leila, Tony and Susan early 1960s.

Here we are visiting in 1970, my Dad's first visit back since he left Ireland in 1957. That would be Leila in the blue dress.

Me with my cousins, who lived in the house, Brenda and Antoinette. the boys hadn't been born yet.

My other cousin, Susan (RIP) outside the house.

Here is Leila's clan in front of the house in the later 1970s as the boys are also in the photo.

This shot shows the house across the street on Brenda's wedding day - Susan and Antoinette are bridemaids.

Some of the famous people who grew up in Drimnagh.


  1. What a gorgeous front door! Wide, three panels; brass hardware. And that arched entry! Lovely.

  2. Isn't it thrilling finding your relatives in the records. For me, for some reason, it made them so much more real.
    Interesting that they'd give the town a name that means poor town. Usually it goes the other way and the names are so exaggerated. Around here, they think nothing of calling something, like...."Green Lakes" and there's no lake at all. I lived on an un-named street once and six of us homeowners had to come up with a name. I wanted EASY Street, but my neighbors had teenaged girls and didn't see the humor in it at all. We couldn't agree and it still doesn't have a name.

  3. Oh how I remember putting my hair up in curlers just like the one in the picture above!! We use to tie a sheer scarf to hold all the curlers in place in case some became loose!! Ah, the memories, thanks!

  4. What's with all the different brick on the Ballybough Road houses? I had to laugh about your grandmother taking care of the priests. That sounds a lot like my dad's stories about his grandmother. She was a devout member of St. Paul's Catholic Church and didn't want him playing with any of the Baptist kids.

  5. I remember a time when it was common sight to see girls and women in curlers and a head scarf - not any more thank goodness.

    1. Bob, sometimes I think curlers and a head scarf would be a welcome change from the red, blue, pink and purple punk styles that are currently in favor in my town. LOL

    2. Isn't it amazing how finding a family home, and pictures as well, just leads to a wonderful road of memories -- right down to current times. A fun and interesting trip you took us on.

  6. Some of these photos look very like ones in my family's collection. My father left Belfast in the 1930s, and he brought his own family back in the mid-1970s to visit. We didn't go to Belfast because of the "troubles", but we did go to Dublin and reconnect with some of his 12 siblings.

    You've got to love those "Doors of Dublin"..

  7. It's funny that others were taken with the front door. I was thinking the same thing. I love that door. I very much enjoyed your story of the people and the neighborhood.

  8. My favorite photo is of the front door. What a great way to start the post, cuz it was like opening the door for your family history. Nice idea. Great photos ---and btw your dad was a good looking guy.


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