Sometime in the 19th century, the landlord forced the families living in Killelton to leave. At one time, James Fitzgerald’s wife, Elizabeth Graney, may have called Killelton her home. Only ruins are left as a reminder of the people who once lived there.
On our incredible journey to Ireland in 2008, we stopped in Dingle and found a living Graney, who spelled his name a bit differently. He said more Graneys lived over the hills on the northern shore, reinforcing our believe that our Graneys came from Killelton. Killelton is across the peninsula from Dingle, the mountainous terrain separating these two coastal communities. We returned to the car and continued along the road, heading around and across the peninsula. We stopped at a delightful pub in Camp, the John Ashe, for a bite to eat and an opportunity to chat. The proprietor didn’t seem to know any Graneys, but he reassured us that we were not far from Killelton.
We got back in the car and continued down the road. After driving for 10 minutes, we knew we had gone too far and retraced our way back towards Camp. This time we spotted the tiny sign marking the entrance to a community that was no more – Killelton.
I felt like I had come home. But as I walked the pathway into the townland, devoid now of families since their eviction two centuries ago, my jubilation at coming home was dampened by the shadows and echoes of my people and their past suffering.
To see photographs of our trip to the Dingle Peninsula, in my search for remnants of my Fitzgerald and Graney roots, click on SEARCHING FOR KILLELTON.
© 2010, Cathy H Paris