The following information was provided by Mr Steve Dolan, Manager of The Irish Workhouse Centre, Portumna, Co. Galway
The Claremorris Poor Law Union was officially declared in 1850. The Workhouse was opened in 1852 at a cost of £8,000. It was built to house a maximum capacity of 800 inmates, but the population of the Workhouse never even reached 50% capacity. The highest number of inmates resident at Claremorris Workhouse was 364 in 1853. This is not an indication of affluence in the area, but instead a result of the Workhouse being opened after the worst years of the famine had already passed. The Claremorris Workhouse was built to accomodate people from the areas of Ballindine, Ballyhaunis, Ballyhowley, Bekan, Caraun, Claremorris, Cloghermore, Course, Crossboyne, Culnacleha, Garrymore, Kilcoman, Kilyine, Knock North, Knock South, Loughanboy, Murneen, and Tagheen.
In 1918 Claremorris Workhouse was occupied by the British Army as a barracks.
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