Derry-Londonderry in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
Two million gallons of whisky
Smoke from illicit poteen whisky stills used to waft over the walls from the Bogside. Legal distilleries opened in the Waterside and in the Bogside in the 1820s. Watt's Abbey Street distillery became the largest in Ireland producing two million gallons of grain whisky a year by the 1880s. The works was as large as two football pitches, its seven-storey high building still being the city's tallest after St Columb's Cathedral. The distillery closed in 1921.
Tyrconnell wins the race
Tyrconnell and Favourite were two of Watt's most popular brands. In 1876 the family entered a racehorse called Tyrconnell in the Irish Classic 'National Produce Stakes'. It won at odds of 100 to 1. Watt's celebrated the victory with a special Tyrconnell label. Tyrconnell was one of the biggest selling whisky brands in the USA in the early 20th century.
The city was once an island. 'It lies in the form of a bow bent, whereof the bog is the string and the river the bow.' (Sir Henry Docwra, 1600). By the 19th century the bog was little more than a stream known as Mary Blue's Burn. Especially after the potato famines of the 1840s the Bogside was the home of poor Catholic families from the country who found work in the city as weavers, sailors and dockers.
The saying - 'a Clancarty will knock at the gates of the city' - nearly came true. Towards the end of the 1689 siege Lord Clancarty arrived with fresh troops. He crossed the bog from the Jacobite camp on the Creggan hills, lobbed grenades into the ditches and demanded wood to burn down Butcher Gate. Miners were digging tunnels into the cellars below. The defenders crept along the walls from Bishop's Gate to surprise the attack, firing on the troops from above. Thirty five Jacobites were killed and Clancarty never knocked.
Location. 54° 59.768′ N, 7° 19.4′ W. Marker is in Derry-Londonderry, Northern Ireland, in County Londonderry. Touch for map. Marker is on the city wall walking path near Butcher Gate, just southwest of the intersection of Butcher Street and Magazine Street. Marker is in this post office area: Derry-Londonderry, Northern Ireland BT48 6HL, United Kingdom.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named Butcher Gate (here, next to this marker); The Platform (within shouting distance of this marker); World Wars Memorial (about 90 meters away, measured in a direct line); Castle Gate (about 90 meters away); Grand Parade Castle Gate (about 120 meters away); Austins Department Store (about 120 meters away); Royal Bastion (about 150 meters away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Derry-Londonderry.
Also see . . .
1. History of Derry, Ireland. (Submitted on December 29, 2013, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Historic Walls of Derry. (Submitted on December 29, 2013, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Categories. • Forts, Castles • Industry & Commerce • Man-Made Features • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on July 24, 2018. This page originally submitted on December 29, 2013, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 352 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on December 29, 2013, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.