Corbally Mills

CORBALLY MILLS - Drawn and Lithographed at the office of J.I. Whitty L.L.D. Civil and Mining Engineer, 15 Henrietta St., Dublin. VIEW OF PART OF THE ESTATE OF P. ALOYSIUS SHANNON ESQ., Situate near the City of Limerick. (Picture courtesy of Maura & John McNamara)
CORBALLY MILLS - Reflection in the Mill Race.


In May 1931, Josephine O’Brien, a school girl, aged 12 years of age, was playing at the Mill Race, Corbally with her friend Mary Collins, aged 14 years. While playing by the water, she walked out onto a plank protruding over the Mill Race, she lost her balance and fell into the water,  her friend rushed for help, but it was too late when help arrived, her body was recovered by Mr. D. Ievers who was employed by the Lax Weir Fishing Company. The girls mother a widow, worked nearby in Corbally House.


CORBALLY MILLS AND PORTION OF THE LAX WEIR The fisherman in the boat is E.B. Place, son of J.H. Place, Manager of the Shannon Fishing Company Ltd., the man paddling the boat is Patsy McMahon from Ardnacrusha.
View of the Great Lax Weir and Corbally Mill c.1920

In its time Corbally Mill was one of the finest water mills in the Country. Wheat from the mill was transported via the river in the early stages from Custom House docks as there was no direct road link with Limerick.

Corbally Mills and Lax Weir showing the Free Gap built in 1865, called the Queen's Gap and Caisleán na Corann (Castle of the Weir). 

William Walter Copley, a Clerk in charge of the Water Mill, with his family, lived in this house just inside the entrance gate of the Mill Yard. All that remains now are the stone pillars. The house was knocked in the 60's to make way for the present house.
END OF MILL ROAD, the Mill section as it is now. On the right was the entrance to the Mill Yard, on the left Corbally House, now the Nursing Home.

LETTER FROM JERSEY  - 1st February 1965

Dear Mr. Lysaght,

I have read with the greatest interest - and no little nostalgia! - your "Short History" of the Abbeymen. 

Of special interest to me is the reproduction of the photo figure 11 as this portrays my eldest brother Capt. E. B. Place (peal fishing probably) on the "tail of Garrafh" (excuse phonetic spelling!) being paddled by one Patsy McMahon of Parteen, in a brocaun which was very much beamier than those normally used by the Shannon Fishing Co. - as it was then called - snap net men. The normal ones they used were much wider and more stable than those of the Abbey men.

This particular brocaun was specially built - probably by the late Mickey Farrell - for one of the Fishery "Star" net men on my fathers instructions as the net man mentioned (Frank Connors) was about 15 stone or possibly more and so generously proportioned that even a Corbally brocaun was deemed inadequate and unsafe to accomodate him !!

The photo and also figure 10 were I think taken by someone directly - or indirectly connected with my old home, Corbally House and appear to be reproductions of original photos.

I would be more than grateful if you could let me know who now owns them and whether it would be possible for me to acquire them as I think that during our time there, they were possibly framed and on one of the walls inside Corbally House.

Thanking you, I remain, Yours Sincerely, Hugh L.P. Place.

P.S. How is my old fishing acquaintance Arthur Lysaght?  Please give him my kindest regards.