The following information was provided by Mr Steve Dolan, Manager of The Irish Workhouse Centre, Portumna, Co. Galway
The Galway City Poor Law Union was officially declared in 1839, making it one of the first in the country. The Union Workhouse was opened in 1842 at a cost of £9,800. The Workhouse was designed to house a maximum capacity of 1,000 inmates, though census records show that the actual number of inmates reached as high as 3,343 in 1849. The Galway Union Workhouse was built to accomodate people from the areas of Annaghdown, Aran, Athenry, Balynacourty, Claregalway, Galway city, Killanin, Lackagh, Moycullen, Oranmore, Oughterard, and Stradbally.
In 1921, the inmates of the Galway City Workhouse were transferred to the County Home in Loughrea. The building was then made into a hospital and the current University College Hospital Galway now stands on the site of the old Workhouse.
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