12 Oct The Old Sod
People with Irish heritage are everywhere, and I am no exception. My Nana (grandma for those of you non-Irish) was Mary Elizabeth Ryan, 100% Irish through and through. One of our first stops after leaving Dublin was a small town called Nenagh, which is just north of an even smaller town called Silvermines, where my ancestors are said to have come from. Upon arriving, we quickly came to realize that there isn’t much reason to visit Nenagh unless you have some sort of attachment to the area. It was a typical small town, quaint but not particularly charming. There were the remains of a castle tower in the center of town, but by the time we stopped driving in circles trying to find it via roadway and just walked to the damn thing, it was closed.
I did enjoy of lovely meal of fish, chips and mushy peas while there. Though mushy peas may neither look nor sound appealing, I assure you they are quite lovely. Dad also had a local Irish grass-fed beef filet that was really good.
After a good night’s sleep in Nenagh, it was time to visit the old sod.
Silvermines was a fairly new looking 2 street town surrounded by hilly pastures. Exactly the kind of place you imagine your Irish ancestors coming from. As we were driving around we saw a sign pointing down a road for “Ryan’s Thatched Bar”, so naturally we decided to seek it out. We never found Ryan’s Bar, but we did find an adorable little thatched house that we creepily took pictures of.
We also came across some cows in the road….
The next stop on our adventure was the Silvermines cemetery. As a general rule, I’m pretty creeped out by cemeteries, but this one was really beautiful. There were graves ranging from the early 1800s-present day, with several additional headstones that were quite possibly much older but in such poor condition they couldn’t be read. This could be the place where my great great great grandparents were laid to rest. We found several headstones with the surname Ryan, however none could be confirmed as family as Ryan is an extremely common name in County Tipperary.
That wraps up our little adventure to Silvermines. More Ireland & treats coming soon!