The massive ruins of this 17th century stronghold dominate the picturesque town of Manorhamilton. The Castle around which the town grew has a dramatic and colourful history – stories of which live on in the town to this day.
All this and more can be experienced at the Castle Heritage Centre which features a permanent exhibition and provides guided tours of the Castle grounds.
To arrange a Tour of the Castle call Tony on 086 2502593
The Flight of the Earls
foe-seoirseThe history of Manorhamilton Castle is interwoven with the overall history of Ireland and Northern Ireland in particular.
In the early 17th century land in the Ulster area had become available for distribution by the Crown as a result of defeat of the Irish Nobles culminating in the ‘Flight of the Earls’ in 1607. This was one the most defining incidents in Irish History marking the final overthrow of the old Gaelic aristocracy. With their power broken Hugh O’Neill, Earl of Tyrone and Rory O’Donnell, Earl of Tyrconnell, together with many other chieftains fled to Europe to escape capture by the English.
Now that the Irish leaders were no longer organising resistance the English took the opportunity to consolidate their control. They quickly settled the land with loyal subjects from Britain who would not present a threat of rebellion.
Sir Frederick Hamilton
old paintingManorhamilton Castle was built between 1634 and 1638 by Sir Frederick Hamilton, a Scotsman and British courtier, who had been granted land in this area of Leitrim in 1621.
The colonisation or ‘plantation’ was part of what is now known as the Plantation of Leitrim. Hamilton’s estate comprised of 6,300 acres of arable land and 10,650 acres of bog and waste.
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