Castlecomer Workhouse

CastlecomerCounty Kilkenny

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Castlecomer Workhouse on Historic 25 inch map (1897-1913)

The Castlecomer Poor Law Union was officially declared in 1850. The Workhouse was opened in 1854 at a cost of £7,390. It was built to house a maximum capacity of 550 inmates. The Castlecomer Workhouse was built to accomodate people from the areas of Attanagh, Ballyragget, Castlecomer, Clough, Clogharinka, Kilmacar, Moneenroe, Mothell, and Muckalee. 

The Castlecomer Workhouse site is now occupied by a hospital with many of the original buildings still standing. 



For more information see here Ireland VIEW SOURCE
County Kilkenny Archives Ireland VIEW SOURCE

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    My great grandparents were Anne Ryan 1839-1877, (daughter of Laurence Ryan and Margaret Comerford) and Thomas Cochrane 1835-1895, (son of Robert Cochrane and ?).  Anne Ryan and Thomas Cochrane were married in Castlecomer in 1868. They were Master and Mistress of the Castlecomer Workhouse. 


    Anne Ryan Cochrane died 26 Nov 1877. See attachment below "Kilkenny Moderator 1877 (2). pdf " for her death announcement.


    See attachment below "Kilkenny Moderator December 8, 1877" under 



    for a discussion of the need to hire a MATRON to replace Mrs Cochrane (deceased)


    See also email attachment "Kilkenny Journal 1877" under the title "The Matronship" for a discussion of the salary for the replacement of Mrs Cochrane.  Note Mr Kenny who wanted to lower the salary from 35 pounds per year to 20 pounds per year or to advertise the job to whoever would take it for the lowest salary. This was not accepted but they did lower the salary from 35 pounds to 25 pounds. No wonder the Irish came to America.




    I believe that Anne Ryan Cocnrane is likely buried in the Castlecomer Workhouse Cemetery but I have been unable to confirm that.  Her husband Thomas Cochrane came to Philadelphia PA where one of his daughters (Margaret Cochrane 1870-1960)  lived and also his brother in law James J Ryan 1848-1929 also lived. Thomas Cochrane died at 60 years old and is buried in Old Cathedral Cemetery in Philadelphia, Pa.


    I have not figured out how to post the referenced attachments here. If anybody can tell me how, I will do that.

    Marge Gillis


    Thursday 12th December 2019, 01:49AM
  • Hi Marge, 

    I can write up Ancestor Chronicles of Anne and Thomas for you if you like and then link them to your account?

    If you need more help finding records then your best bet is to contact the Kilkenny County Council Archivist directly to see what they have access to. You should be able to find out more if you email

    If you're looking for information on a more local area then can I suggest putting a question on the Message Boards as more members will see it there. 

    I will get started on Anne and Thomas and I will link them to the Workhouse. If there is any more information that you would like me to include in the chronicles, then please don't hesitate to contact me on

    Best of luck in finding more information

    Valerie - IrelandXO Team

    Chronicles Editor

    Thursday 12th December 2019, 10:14AM

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