School: Yellow Furze

Location:
Yellow Furze, Co. Meath
Teacher:
Síle, Bean Uí Leamhain

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Thatching

Archival Reference

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0684, Page 176

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Before slated and tile roofs became common most of the houses were thatched. Many thatchers were needed because thatching was a craft in itself. The following was how it was done. A load of oaten or wheaten straw was obtained and a large log placed on top of it. Then it was pulled and all the dirt and short pieces of straw were shaken out of it. It was then tied in bundles and wetted. The straw was then ready for thatching.

A ladder, a thatching fork and a rake were then needed. Another man was then needed to attend on the thatcher. The thatcher got handfuls of straw and put a sort of knot at the top of them. This knot is called a "thull". Then he shoved in the bunches with the thatching fork beginning at the bottom.
After each course he raked and poured water on it. When he had finished he cut the eaves. This was generally done with a shears.

Collector
Patrick Austin
Gender
male
Address
Haystown, Co. Meath
Informant
Mathew Carey
Gender
male
Age
63
Address
Navan, Co. Meath
Language
English