Old Cahersiveen Barracks

The Old Cahersiveen Barracks is beautiful, sitting on the side of the Fertha River looking down on the marina. It was built by the English from 1870 to 1875. The architect was an English Architect called Enoch Trevor-Owen. 

Restored Old Cahersiveen Barracks
Restored Old Cahersiveen Barracks

Why did the English build it?

You will have to go back a few years earlier. In 1866 the transatlantic cable was first put into use. The Fenians had a huge stronghold on Cahersiveen.

In 1867 there was an uprising that failed to take the transatlantic cable. It was the first cable linking America to Europe. The English were afraid that they would be cut off from America so they built the Barracks for the Royal Irish Constabulary

What happened to the Barracks in 1922?

In 1922 it was badly burnt in the civil war. The roof was made from wood, so it quickly went up in flames. When the town men were fighting up in the mountains outside Caherciveen they were losing.

To give them a fighting chance the women from the town walked in and set fire to the barracks to split the Free State Army. Therefore, they had to come back to put out the fire.

In the 1990s it was repaired and now there is a restaurant and tourist office located there. There are exhibits from the home of Daniel O’Connell and the Fenian Revolution. 

What is the connection between the Old Cahersiveen Barracks and India?

Now it is a lovely building, but it doesn’t blend in with the surrounding buildings. It is rumored that when built in the 1870s, the English were in a hurry to complete it as they feared another Fenian uprising.

The plans were mixed up with a building they were to construct in India. When you see the building, you can decide for yourself. India was under British rule at that time.

Check out my web pages on the Ring of Kerry Drive, The Skellig Ring and Slea Head Drive.

3 Comments

  1. Another slight correction

    “What happened to the Barracks in 1922?
    In 1922 it was badly burnt in the civil war. The roof was made from wood, so it quickly went up in flames. When the town men were fighting up in the mountains outside Caherciveen they were losing.

    To give them a fighting chance the women from the town walked in and set fire to the barracks to split the Black and Tans. Therefore, they had to come back to put out the fire”

    This was the civil war not the war of independence. The troops defending the Barracks were Republicans and their Irish opponents were the Free State Army not the Blacks & Tans.

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