Place:Dundalk, County Louth, Republic of Ireland

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NameDundalk
Alt namesDún Dealgansource: Canby, Historic Places (1984) I, 257
Dún Dealgansource: Wikipedia
TypeTown
Coordinates54.017°N 6.417°W
Located inCounty Louth, Republic of Ireland
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Dundalk is the county town of County Louth, Ireland. It is on the Castletown River, which flows into Dundalk Bay, and is near the border with Northern Ireland, halfway between Dublin and Belfast. It has associations with the mythical warrior hero Cú Chulainn.

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History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

The Dundalk area has been inhabited since at least 3500 BC during the Neolithic period. A tangible reminder of this early presence can still be seen in the form of the Proleek Dolmen, the eroded remains of a megalithic tomb located in the Ballymascanlon area to the north of Dundalk. Celtic culture arrived in Ireland around 500 BC. According to the legendary historical accounts, the group settled in North Louth were known as the Conaille Muirtheimne and took their name from Conaill Carnagh, legendary chief of the Red Branch Knights of Ulster. Their land now forms upper and lower Dundalk.

Dundalk had been originally developed as an unwalled (meaning village; translates literally as "Street Townland"). The streets passed along a gravel ridge which runs from the present day Bridge Street in the North, through Church Street to Clanbrassil Street to Earl Street, and finally to Dublin Street.

In 1169 the Normans arrived in Ireland and set about conquering large areas. By 1185 a Norman nobleman named Bertram de Verdun erected a manor house at Castletown Mount and subsequently obtained the town's charter in 1189. Another Norman family, the De Courcys, led by John de Courcy, settled in the Seatown area of Dundalk, the "Nova Villa de Dundalke". Both families assisted in the fortification of the town, building walls and other fortification in the style of a Norman fortress. The town of Dundalk was developed as it lay close to an easy bridging point over the Castletown River and as a frontier town, the northern limit of The Pale. In 1236 Bertram's granddaughter, Rohesia commissioned Castle Roche to fortify the region, and to offer protection from the Irish territory of Ulster.

The town was sacked in 1315, during the Bruce campaign. After taking possession of the town Edward Bruce proclaimed himself King of Ireland and remained here for nearly a whole year before his army was totally defeated and himself slain after being attacked by John de Birmingham.

Dundalk had been under Royalist (Ormondist) control for centuries, until 1647 when it became occupied by The Northern Parliamentary Army of Colonel George Monck.


The modern town of Dundalk largely owes its form to Lord Limerick (James Hamilton, later 1st Earl of Clanbrassil) in the 17th century. He commissioned the construction of streets leading to the town centre; his ideas stemming from his visits to Continental Europe. In addition to the demolition of the old walls and castles, he had new roads laid out eastwards of the principal streets. The most important of these new roads connected a newly laid down Market Square, which still survives, with a linen and cambric factory at its eastern end, adjacent to what was once an army cavalry and artillery barracks (now Aiken Barracks).

In the 19th century, the town grew in importance and many industries were set up in the local area, including a large distillery. This development was helped considerably by the opening of railways, the expansion of the docks area or 'Quay' and the setting up of a board of commissioners to run the town.

The partition of Ireland in May 1921 turned Dundalk into a border town and the Dublin–Belfast main line into an international railway. The Irish Free State opened customs and immigration facilities at Dundalk to check goods and passengers crossing the border by train. The Irish Civil War of 1922–23 saw a number of confrontations in Dundalk. The local Fourth Northern Division of the Irish Republican Army under Frank Aiken, who took over Dundalk barracks after the British left, tried to stay neutral but 300 of them were detained by the National Army in August 1922. However, a raid on Dundalk Gaol freed Aiken and over 100 other anti-treaty prisoners; two weeks later he retook Dundalk barracks and captured its garrison before freeing the remaining republican prisoners there. Aiken did not try to hold the town, however, and before withdrawing he called for a truce in a meeting in the centre of Dundalk. The 49 Infantry Battalion and 58 Infantry Battalion of the National Army were based in Dundalk along with No.8 armoured locomotive and two fully armoured cars of their Railway Protection Corps.

For several decades after the end of the Civil War, Dundalk continued to function as a market town, a regional centre, and a centre of administration and manufacturing. Its position close to the border gave it considerable significance during the "Troubles" of Northern Ireland. Many people were sympathetic to the cause of the Provisional Irish Republican Army and Sinn Féin. It was in this period that Dundalk earned the nickname 'El Paso', after the Texan border town of the same name on the border with Mexico.[1]

In December 2000, Taoiseach Brian Cowen welcomed US president Bill Clinton to Dundalk to mark the conclusion of the Troubles and the success of the Northern Ireland peace process. Cowen said:

Dundalk is a meeting point between Dublin and Belfast, and has played a central role in the origin and evolution of the peace process. More than most towns in our country, Dundalk, as a border town, has appreciated the need for a lasting and just peace.

On 1 September 1973, the 27 Infantry Battalion of the Irish Army was established with its Headquarters in Dundalk barracks, renamed Aiken Barracks in 1986 in honour of Frank Aiken.

Dundalk suffered economically when Irish membership of the European Economic Community in the 1970s exposed local manufacturers to foreign competition that they were ill-equipped to cope with. The result was the closure of many local factories, resulting in the highest unemployment rate in Leinster, Ireland's richest province. High unemployment produced serious social problems in the town that were only alleviated by the advent of the Celtic Tiger investment boom at the start of the 21st century. Dundalk's economy has developed rapidly since 2000. Today many international companies have factories in Dundalk, from food processing to high-tech computer components. Harp Lager, a beer produced by Diageo, is brewed in the Great Northern Brewery, Dundalk.

The Earls of Roden had property interests in Dundalk for over three centuries, and at an auction in July 2006 the 10th Earl sold his freehold of the town, including ground rents, mineral rights, manorial rights, the reversion of leases and the freehold of highways, common land, and the fair green. Included in the sale were many documents, such as a large 18th century estate map. The buyer was undisclosed.

Battles

  • 248 – Battle fought at Faughart by Cormac Ulfada, High King of Ireland against Storno (Starno), king of Lochlin
  • 732 – Battle fought at Faughart by Hugh Allain, king of Ireland against the Ulaid
  • 851 – Battle at Dundalk Bay between the Fingall (Norwegian) and Dubhgall (Danish) Vikings takes place
  • 877 – Gregory, King of Scotland took Dundalk en route to Dublin
  • 1318Battle of Dundalk (Battle of Faughart) fought on 14 October 1318 between a Hiberno-Norman force led by John de Bermingham, 1st Earl of Louth and Edmund Butler, Earl of Carrick and a Scots-Irish army commanded by Edward Bruce, brother of Robert Bruce, King of Scotland.
  • 1483 – Traghbally-of-Dundalk plundered and burned by Hugh Oge ally of Con O'Donnell
  • 1566 – O'Neill besieged the town with 4,000 footmen and 700 horsemen
  • 1688 – Brothers Malcolm and Archibald MacNeill, officers of William III land in Dundalk and defeat the Celtic MacScanlons in the Battle of Ballymascanlon
  • 1689 – Schomberg's Williamite Army camped to the north of the town record 6,000 deaths due to fever, scurvy, and
  • 1941 – On 24 July the town was bombed by the Luftwaffe with no casualties.
  • 1971 – The Battle of Courtbane – on Sunday 29 August 1971 a British army patrol consisting of two armoured Ferret Scout cars crossed the Irish border into Co. Louth near the village of Courtbane close to Dundalk. When attempting to retreat back angry locals blocked their way and set one of the vehicles on fire. While this was happening an IRA unit arrived on the scene and after an exchange of gunfire a British soldier was killed and another one was wounded.
  • 1975 – The Dundalk Christmas Bombing – on 19 December 1975 a car bomb killed 2 and injured 15

Coat of arms

A bend between six martlets forms the coat of arms. The bend and martlets are derived from the family of Thomas de Furnivall who obtained a large part of the land and property of Dundalk and district in about 1309 by marriage to Joan de Verdon daughter of (an Anglo-Norman family). Three of these martlets, in reversed tinctures, form the arms of Dundalk FC. The ermine boar supporter is derived from the arms of the Ó hAnluain (O'Hanlon) family, Kings of Airthir.

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