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Your Are Here - Home > Counties > Cork County > Mitchelstown
Mitchelstown (Irish: Baile Mhistéala) is a small country town in County Cork in the south-west of Ireland. Mitchelstown nestles in the valley to the south of the Galtee Mountains close to the Mitchelstown Caves and is roughly 25km from Cahir and roughly 36km from Limerick. Brí Gobann, meaning "hill of Gobann", was the original name for site of the town which takes its present name from the Anglo-Norman Mitchel or Micheal family who established a settlement here in the 12th century. The Gradog river runs by the town into the Funshion river, which in turn is a tributary of the nearby Blackwater river.

Mitchelstown is believed to have been originally established and centred around a part of the town known as Brí Gobhann (anglicised Brigown) by Saint Fanahan in or around the 8th century. The town was subsequently redesigned and rebuilt by the Kingston family and today retains the basic layout constructed by them including several interesting stone buildings designed in a late Georgian style of architecture. The layout established by the Earl of Kingston between 1775 and 1820 was one of the earliest planned town layouts in Ireland. Mitchelstown Castle itself was modelled after 1798 Windsor. During the Irish Civil War in 1922 the castle was vandalised and burnt to the ground, ostensibly to prevent it from being used by the Irish Government and its Irish Free State Army.

In 1887, Irish Land League campaigners, including local man John Mandeville, helped organise a rent strike at the estate of Lady Kingston near Mitchelstown. On September 9, three estate tenants were shot dead and others wounded, by police at the town's courthouse where MP William O'Brien had been brought for trial for inciting non-payment of rent; this event became known as the Mitchelstown Massacre and is at least partly commemorated by a memorial to Mandeville unveiled in 1906 by O'Brien himself. In years to come the phrase "Remember Mitchelstown" was subsequently much bandied about in the British House of Commons when Irish affairs were under discussion.

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In: Cork
People: 3,300
Speak: English
Type: Market Town
GPS: -8.269958, 52.265636