Places, — March 10, 2010 9:07 — 0 Comments

Sheetrim Farm 20s – 40s

Jack McKeown raised a family of six on that 30-acre farm in Sheetrim from the 1920’s to the 1940’s. He was a blacksmith as well as a farmer but had scarcely enough from both to keep his family from the breadline. 

An even smaller farm among the sour hills of Dungooley (in Louth a mile or two outside Forkhill) was eventually purchased for his second son (the eldest was earmarked for Sheetrim) and he adjourned there with Maisie his wife and their two children (when eventually this family came along!) – paying back to his father over decades the loan taken out at first purchase.

 

Jack’s four daughters had to find work outside the home – and husbands. Delia – the eldest – married Hugh Laverty from Oram and moved there (just a few miles away across the border) though her eldest son John was reared in his Grannys. 

 

Kassy married Mick Dennison and settled, first in Newtownhamilton and later in Newry. Rita married Eddie Flynn and reared a large family in Forkhill, one son now being a Councillor in Newry and Mourne. 

 

Eileen went into ‘service’, working at first in Cross and then in Newry, acting as a skivvy for the Barclays, a middle-class family living in what is now the Parochial House on Newry’s Armagh Road.  

 

But it before all that, of the life of these people on the Sheetrim farm, that I intended to write!

 

… more later …

 

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