Now part of our industrial heritage, culm crushers are remnants of the coal mining industry in the Coal Measures Hills of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Concentrated mostly in the areas around Old Leighlin and Castlecomer, they were a communal effort erected on the roadside near a stream or river.
Culm crushers were hewn from granite or limestone, mounted on a similar platform and drawn in a circular orbit by a horse, pony or ass. A mixture of coal slack, sticky yellow clay and water placed in the track of the stone was crushed and bonded until it clung to the stone. When scraped off it was ready to be made into culm balls (bums) for use as a domestic fuel in a 'raised hearth' or grate.
This company stone, as they were known, was re-sited here from Johnduffswood, Old Leighlin, Co. Carlow in 1999 by LIG.
[Bottom right illustration caption reads]
The outer etched line shows the broad outline of the Castlecomer culm-burning region where culm was burned as a domestic fuel. The inner etched line shows the relatively small area within it where culm crushers were used to temper the culm and yellow clay.
The location of culm crushers within the Castlecomer-burning region, shows that the vast majority were located in a relatively small area, mainly in the Barrow Valley centred around Old Leighlin, Co. Carlow.
The culm crushers or grinding
stones, were used mainly for
tempering culm. They were
also used for grinding corn,
bones and chalk
as well as making mortar
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Agriculture • Environment • Man-Made Features • Settlements & Settlers. A significant historical year for this entry is 1999.
Location. 52° 44.233′ N, 6° 58.708′ W. Marker is in Leighlinbridge, Leinster, in County Carlow. Marker is at the intersection of Milford Street and Poe's Hill, on the right when traveling north on Milford Street. Touch for map. Marker Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Brian Mulroney Ancestral Home Visit (a few steps from this marker); Arrival of the Carmelite Order (a few steps from this marker); World War I Memorial (a few steps from this marker); Nurse Margaret Kehoe (a few steps from this marker); Sisters of Mercy (a few steps from this marker); Birthplace of John Tyndall FRS (within shouting distance of this marker); Nicholas Aylward Vigors FRS (within shouting distance of this marker); The Tyndall Way (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Leighlinbridge.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 8, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 8, 2019, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 87 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on July 8, 2019, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.