Craggaunowen Castle (Creagán Eoghain or "Eoghan's little rocky hill")

Craggaunowen Castle




Location: near Sixmilebridge, 10 km (6 mi) East of Quin Map

Constructed: 1550 by John MacSioda MacNamara


Desription of Craggaunowen Castle

Craggaunowen Castle is a a medieval tower castle located near Sixmilebridge, 10 km (6 mi) East of Quin. Craggaunowen Castle was constructed in 1550 by John MacSioda MacNamara. During Cromwellian confiscations citadel was taken over and destroyed. Over time the tower house was abandoned and fell in disrepair. In 1820's Craggaunowen Castle was used briefly as a summer house for Tom Steele, but soon it was left unattended. In 1960's the castle was bought and restored by John Hunt. Only additions to the military fortification were made to the ground floor. Additionally John Hunt started Craggaunowen Park.


Craggaunowen archaeological open air museum


Craggaunowen - The Living Past

Craggaunowen archeological open air museum was started by John Hunt in the 1960's. He recreated village on a man made island from the Early Iron Age. Among dwellings, religious site and defences open air museum also contains "The Brendan", recreation of a leather hulled boat that was used by Saint Brendan for his trip to the North America in the middle 6th century AD.


Craggaunowen archaeological open air museum 

Crannógs are artificial islands in the shallow area of lakes or in the marshland or on natural islands, on which the people of the Iron Age built huts until the early Christian period, the actual purpose of which is probably in the cult area. Some of them were already in the Bronze Age of Crannóg and some were used and inhabited until the 17th century. This Crannóg is the reconstruction of a pile-building that was not on site, as it was especially common in the north-west of Ireland. Crannógs are also found in Scotland and are associated with the Picts there.

Construction method
The foundation formed several layers of stones and bushes, which was sunk in the lake. The whole thing took hold with circular wooden piles gathered in the ground, limiting the platform filled with Earth and Sand. Within a palisade fence, the builders of huts made of wattle and clay-built. A number of Crannógs are within sight of other previous buildings, such as megalithic buildings.

One could reach the artificial islands in shallow water on foot, by built-in or over dams and ridges, which excludes that they served the defense.


Recreation of the Saint Brendan's leather boat

Recreation of the Saint Brendan's leather boat