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Ballyisland Townland, Creagh Civil Parish, Barony of West Carbery, East Division, County Cork, Ireland

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Date: [unknown]
Location: Creagh Civil Parish, east side of Lough Hynemap
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Ballyisland was originally the lands of the O'Driscoll family, situated in their Collymore district, along the eastern shores of Lough Hyne along the southwest coast of what is now County Cork, Ireland. Family chieftain Sir Fineen O'Driscoll, Sr. died in Clogheen Castle in Lough Hyne in 1629 and his son inherited the island and the eastern shore of Lough Hyne. Sir Fineen has already aligned himself with the English crown through their "Surrender and Regrant" program, and the land likely remained under British control.

Ballyisland townland became part of the Civil Parish of Creagh with the establishment of the Church of Ireland during Cromwellian times in the 1640s and 1650s.

Ballyisland townland was part of the John Evans-Freke Lord Carbery Estate in 1788 when he had his property surveyed, and this survey has been digitized and published online. At that time it consisted of approximately 186 Irish acres.

Ballyisland townland was later, as populations increased, (perhaps about 1837), divided into several townlands that exist today. These townlands include one named Ballyisland which is closest to the island in Lough Hyne containing the ruined Castle of Sir Fineen O'Driscoll the Rover (known as Clogheen Stoney Place).

Ballyisland townland is the location of Lough Hyne Cottage, later known as Lough Hyne House, owned by the Becher family in the 1800s and sublet to brewer Daniel McCarthy of Skibbereen as his primary residence during the famine years of the late 1840s. This "big house" still exists and is now used as a bed and breakfast according to local family sources.


  • 1853 Griffith's Valuations of Ballyisland and surrounding townlands.
  • Lough Hyne: From Prehistory to the Present - book by Terri Kearney of the Skibbereen Heritage Centre, Skibbereen, County Cork, Ireland.

Profiles of Ballyisland Landlords and Residents

  1. Sir Fineen O'Driscoll, Sr., seadog for Queen Elizabeth I. (-1629), Clan Chieftain and Resident
  2. John Evans-Freke, 6th Baron Carbery (-1845), Landlord who lived in Freke Castle near Clonakilty.
  3. John Richard Hedges Becher - (1825-1901), Landlord
  4. Daniel McCarthy - (1818-1912) Brewer in Skibbereen, Resident of Lough Hyne Cottage in Ballyisland in 1837 and in the 1840s during the Great Famine.
  5. Jane Matthews is listed as leasing resident of Lough Hyne Cottage in 1853 on Griffith's Valuations.

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