IRL – O’Callaghan Castle

Dromaneen Castle was one of the three main castles of the ancient O’Callaghan clan; Dromore and Clonmeen being the others. The ruin is that of an early 17th century Jacobean fortified mansion, rather than a true castle, and it is said to have been built by Caher O’Callaghan circa 1610. It was built to replace an older-type fortification, which had probably been in the style of a tower house. The family resided both in the less comfortable but more formidable Clonmeen, and when it was completed, the more elegant Dromaneen. It has been described as representing “the last phase of castellation in the descent from a lofty moated keep to a simple manor house” which reaches ‘more nearly to the modern domestic building, while Mallow Castle, also transitional, relates more nearly to the older style’.

The castle was last renovated in 1909, by John O’Brien, a contractor in Killavullen and remained a dwelling until, 1940, when it was badly damaged by fire.