School: Stonetown, Louth (roll number 16431)

Stonetown Lower, Co. Louth
P. Ó Dubháin

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Anthony Bennett's Ghost

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The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0668, Page 291

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Anthony Bennett was an old fellow who lived in a room of his own beside our old house. One day when he was going down our old road he fell down in a kind of a faint, and had to be carried back to his room. When he recovered he told his hearers that he had seen a ghost. After that he began the practice of getting into communication with the "ghost" at night, and soon great crowds used to come to witness his doings. One who was present told me that he would go off in a kind of a swoon before he would begin to talk to the "ghost".
One man, a shopkeeper, told Anthony to inquire from the "ghost" as to the whereabouts of his mother, who had died some time before. After duly communicating with the unseen, Anthony replied: "He says she's in Hell, on account of giving the light weights." "Well" remarked the son, "I often toul' her that myself!"
One one occasion my grandfather was going round Tallanstown, when he met three fellows from Stonetown going round the Mount on their knees, and with their boots tied across their shoulders. When he asked what they were doing they answered that Anthony Bennett had told them to do this in order to get their relatives out of Purgatory.
Once when a crowd were present at the seancé, somebody saw a man dressed in black approaching, and said: "Here's the priest!" At once, the crowd scattered, and Anthony instantly awoke from his swoon. It was a false alarm, but it showed that Anthony had doubts as to the orthodoxy of his acts.

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Pat Murphy
Stonetown Lower, Co. Louth
Stonetown Lower