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Grange Graveyard

A map of the graveyard


Of immense value for those studying the gravyard, and in particular for locating burial plots is a map numbering each of them individually. The map, copied by R H Nolan & Co. in 1891, was based upon earlier maps of 1830 and 1865. Accompanying it is a book listing the names of the families with burial plots in Grange with numbers corresponding to those on the map. Townland locations for these families are also given.


Over 350 burial plots are marked on the map. Some of the names of families with burial plots in Grange are now unrepresented in the district. The names Bewol of Lisdiven, Crumpleton of Hawstown, McNirlin of Grange and Tolan of Drumgauty have left no trace. Some of the place names in the list are no longer in use and are a few are difficult now to identify.


The Kanes of Causeyend had burial rights in Grange. Causeyend is not a townland name and appears on no maps of the area. My own grandfather used it as the name of the portion of the main road between Derry and Strabane that ran through what used to be Drumgauty bog, close to Dunnalong Church of Ireland church. This road when the bog was cut away was an elevated causeway. Greystone where the Heasty (Hasty or Hastings) family lived is a sub-division of the townland of Gortmellan. Peterís Hill is in the townland of Tamnabryan. Peter is an old Scottish word for packman.


Other place names are harder to identify. Peeweep Bog where the Gillespie and Fulton families lived has been lost in the mists of time. So have Eildarragh and Rusheyland where, respectively, the Love and Curry families lived. The extent of the catchment area for the graveyard is indicated by some of the townland names. A few are actually across the River Foyle in Donegal, such as St Johnstown, Maymore and Porthall, while others are from the neighbouring parishes of Glendermott and Leckpatrick. A few are even from Derry City.


This is perhaps a reflection of families originally from the parish who had moved away. For example, the Hamiltons of Maymore in Co. Donegal who possessed a burial plot in Grange were originally from the townland of Gortivea a short distance away from the graveyard. This family moved to Maymore shortly after the present writerís great-great-great-grandfather, Robert Rolleston (the spelling he used), took over the Hamilton farm in Gortivea. The Clarkes of Porthall in Co. Donegal formerly lived in what was known as Middle Grange. In 1795 James Clarke moved across the River Foyle to Porthall, but even after his departure from Middle Grange he continued to travel to 1st Donagheady Presbyterian Church where he served as an elder. Marcus Clarke, who in the early 1870s wrote For the term of his natural life on the Australian penal settlements, was a member of this family.

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