January 1756, Lisbon Earthquake, Losses by Cork Merchants of Beef, Pork, Beef in the amount of £4,300 (c€2 million) and the formation of the Barley Cove Sand Dunes, West Cork.

It is believed that the sand dunes at Barley Cove and other areas on the West Cork and Kerry Coast were caused by a Tsunami caused by the earthquake.

The entire city of Lisbon was destroyed by the earthquake and it was rebuilt in the grid pattern.

Going on death notices in Cork newspapers in the 18th century there appear to be strong trade links including a significant Cork diaspora in Portugal.  Not all were ‘Wild Geese’ some seem to have a Cork Protestant background.

Courtesy JCHAS, John T. Collins.


The Chief Justice of Ireland was in Cork shortly after and submitted a report.  He said the Cork Merchants were so prosperous that they weathered the storm well which would not have been the case in Dublin.

Newspaper report 22nd January 1756, ‘Earthquake shock felt at Loughrea, 50 acre bog moves 1 mile’, Dr. Casey Collection, John T. Collins.





Rebuilt Lisbon: