07 Jul 2022

Trip Through Time: Where in Dundalk was the Sheila factory?

Trip Through Time: Where in Dundalk was the Sheila factory?

Answers to last week's questions:

Who was Setana?

Setana was the birth name of the legendary hero Cuchullain.

He was the son of Dectine, sister of Conor (or Conchobor as he is sometimes known), the famous head of the Red Branch Knights. Cuchullain changed his name when he accidentally killed the guard hound of Culann, Conor's chief weapons maker, (after whom Slieve Gullion is named) and promised to become 'Culann's Hound' in its place.

The interesting thing about his original name 'Setana' is that some genealogists believe that it comes from the tribe of Setantii who lived in West Briton before the arrival of the Romans and, probably, like the Celts of Ulster, also worshipped the god 'Lugh' who was, allegedly, the father of Cuchulain.

Who owned the 'Brown Bull of Cooley'?

In the Táin legend this bull was the property of Dáire Mac Fiachna, the chief of Cuailgne, at the end of the Carlingford Peninsula and part of the extensive kingdom of Ulaid ruled by Conor.

Queen Maeve of Connaught at first tried to bargain for the fabulous bull but, after her offer was turned down, decided to invade Cuailgne with a large army and take the bull by force.

Does this story seem somewhat similar to Putin's present day attempt to seize the Ukraine?

Where in Dundalk was the Sheila factory?

This was a small clothing factory in the Demesne that was operated by the O'Mahony family from St. Helena in the 1930s. It was housed in an old building in Philip Street that has since been demolished and, mainly, made ladies' blouses. In about 1943 it was taken over by a man named Jimmy Scollan who made children's toys, under a company named Toys Ltd., which only lasted for a few years.

What in old Dundalk was the 'Horse Tide'?

This was a slope beside the Big Bridge, on the Fair Green side, that led down into the Castletown River, where hackney drivers would wash their side-cars and carriages when the tide was high. There was also a large trough along it where their horses could drink fresh water. The practice ended before the Great War in 1914 and the slope is now barely noticeable but the gap in the wall can still be seen.

Questions for next week:

Where was 'Simmons' Hotel' and what is now new about the building?

Where in Dundalk is 'Meeting House Lane' and how did it get this name?

Where was 'Laurence Place'?

What was the 'Great Escape' from Dundalk Jail that is being commemorated soon?

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