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Graveyard Information

Copeland Island Graveyard

County : Down

Denomination :

Graveyard Name : Copeland Island Graveyard

Civil Parish : Donaghadee

Town / Townland : Copeland Island

OS Reference : J591835

Other Information : This little graveyard is only about 200 yards from the landing stage in Chapel Bay on the largest Island of the group Nothing is known about a church on the site in mediaeval times but presumably there was a chapel The islands are called after William Coupeland, a Norman settler They belonged to the Abbey of Bangor at the time of the dissolution of the monasteries and are in the Parish of Bangor They were next granted in 1630 to James Hamilton, Viscount Claneboy On the opposite side of the island (north-west) is a small harbour called Port Ninion after St Ninian bishop of Whithorn in Wigtownshire (c360-c432) In the graveyard there are several uninscribed markers, 2 stones of 1742 and 1746 and a group ranging in date from 1862 to 1940 All stones in the graveyard have been copied They represent only a small range of family names and in fact in the 1863 valuation the only names of residents on the island were Clegg, Emerson and Wright Three of the stones were copies by FJ Bigger and are in memorials of the Dead, VII, 535-536 In the 1830's there were 15 houses on the island but in 1953 only one house was occupied and the last inhabitants, Frederick and Aise Clegg, moved to the mainland in that year They died in 1964 and 1965 and were the last burials in the island graveyard.

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