A local committee chaired by Jim Houlihan is calling for a complete history of the area over the last four hundred years to be recorded in one book or internet site. This would be a major undertaking requiring the employment of a professional historian to research and record such detail. It is also hoped to start a museum in a section of the Butt Hall. Local people must have many items of interest which could be put on view for the benefit of the community.
The following list compiled by Patrick Bonar gives some idea of the history, people, and events, which could be mentioned in an overall history of the area.
Local writers and books.
‘Granny’s Wonderful Chair’ Frances Browne.
‘Two Little Travellers’ Frances Browne Arthur.
Her father went to the local school in Stranorlar.
‘A History ofCooladawson’ Fergus Kelly.
‘Stranorlar Presbyterian Church’ Ivan Knox and Mark Knox.
‘Twins’? Mary Gallagher
‘B&S Historical Notes’ Fr. Jimmy Shiels.
‘The Life And Works Of Frances Browne’ Patrick Bonar.
‘The Passion Of Christ’ Martin Mc Cool.
‘A History of Gaelic Games Around The Twin Towns’ Dan Mc Cool and Joe Crawford.
“The Story of An Irish Hall’ Pat Holland.
“Memories of The Twin Towns’ Dr. Kerrigan.
‘Sarah Leech’ Celine Mc Glynn and Dr. Pauline Holland.
‘A Local History’ Master Maguire
‘A History of Landlordism in Donegal’ Master Gallagher.
‘A History of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland’ Rev. Dill.
There are many other people who must be mentioned like Sean Mc Cool (G.A.A.), David Cunningham (poet), Rebecca Scott (poet), T O’ Flanagan (pen-name Samoth), Willie Gillespie song- (Johnston’s Motor Car), Mick Me Ginley song- (The Hills of Glenswilly) Some of Mick’s family members resided in the Glenfin area. Bridie Gallagher (singer). Some of Bridie’s family connections can be traced back to the Trusk area outside Ballybofey. Chris Mc Donagh (Writer and founder of The Donegal Historical Society). Louis Emerson (Founder of the Museum at Rossnowlagh) Louis taught in The Vocational School Stranorlar. The songs mentioned in this paragraph were very popular in countries like Australia, America and Canada
Many local people were known both nationally and overseas like Isaac Butt (Home Rule), Fr. Mc Dermott (author), Fr. Eunan Mc Mullin (Philosophy and science), Frances Browne (The Blind Poetess), Frances Arthur (author), Joseph Latimer (poet), George Farquhar (author) and Andrais O’Baoil (author).
I have to mention Jim Mc Carron who was shot at Trusk in 1921, and the Drumboe Martyrs who were shot during the civil war. The history of St. Joseph’s Hospital, Drumboe Castle and Meenglass Castle must be mentioned along with Drumboe Abbey, which sadly today is almost forgotten. There are many holy wells in the area going back to pagan times and old forts from the same period.
What effect had ‘The Flight of The Earls’ , the famine, diseases, plantation, emigration, the penal laws during the 1700s, the building of schools in the 1830s, the coming of the railway, the struggle for Home Rule, the civil war and the world wars have on the area. There are many sports clubs and theatre groups in the area which have a history going back for many decades.
This is not a complete list but it will give the reader some idea of the depth of our history and why this information needs to be recorded in one unit for all to access.
It is hoped that in time markers or plaques will be erected at all these sites for future generations and tourists to visit