School: Béal Dearg (roll number 11582)

Belderg More, Co. Mayo
Pádraig Mac Conghamhna

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Archival Reference

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0139, Page 437

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Killala was headquarters...

Killala was headquarters for the Revenue men in ancient times. These Revenue men were the forerunners of the latter day police. They had Revenue boats also for patrolling the coast. They generally came to Belderrig on horseback to make raids for poteen.
The Coastguards were here in olden times living in the houses of the people. A station was erected for them then close to the shore and another station was built later on a higher ground. This was burned in 1921 or 1922 and nothing remains of it now but the cement water tanks attached to each house.
During the Great War the coastguards were taken away for active service The Chief Medical Officer at the time was a one-eyed man named Hodge. Three men from Belderrig were given jobs as coast-watchers - They were Michael McAndrew, Michael Flynn and Paddy McCann. They were on continual duty - one at a time for shifts of six hours - 12 to 6, 6 to 12 etc

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