Bowlers Aughaville, Dromore, Colomane, Durrus, West Cork. Bill Barrett, Patrick O’Driscoll, Richard Barrett, John Connolly, Jimmy Crowley, J.j. Sullivan, Donald Crowley, Eugene Daly and Possible Origins in Co. Armagh and The North of England.
It has been suggested that road bowling was introduced to West Cork by weavers who came in in t18th century from the North of England.
Flor Crowley, a National Teacher from Dunmanway who taught in Bandon founded An Bol Cumann. He wrote extensively on local matters and is books are now collectors items.
Thanks to Peter O’Driscoll, San Francisco and Donal O’Mahony, Cobh.
Bill Barrett who always wore white tennis shoes. Patrick O’Driscoll of Aughavile was recognised as a reasonable good bowler he was the man that guided Bill Barrett during his early days as a bowler.
His grand son Peter O’Driscoll was told by Tom Hayes from Aughaville whom he met in San Francisco. Tom Hayes came to America & San Francisco in 1910, at the age of 17 years he was in the first World War, he died in 1974 and is buried in the Golden Gate National Cemetry. He never married.
Bill Barrett in his younger days was a senior class bowler. This was before you had tar and crushed rock surfaced roads.
Richard Barrett from Colomane Wood he would be a cousin to Bill Barrett, Richard brothers were Pat, Bob, Steven and John. Older men around Colomane often said that John Barrett had the ability to a great bowler.
Richard was a local good bowler not quit a senior class bowler.
John Connolly of Colomane West was a senior class bowler.
Jimmy Crowley of Colomane was a local good bowler He was from the family that owned the trashing machine.
Donald Crowley of Colomane Pub was a local good bowler.
J.J. Sullivan of Coomane north was a local good bowler, he came to America about 1958 he was a cousin to John Crowley’s family. My best guess is that John Crowley’s mother was J.J. Sulivan’s aunt.
The up and coming star was Eugene Daly of Dromore in 1960 and the later arrivals in San Francisco have told Peter O’Driscoll that Eugene was a senior class bowler.
Around Drimoleague and Drinagh, there was a family of Sheen’s (Sheehan?) three brothers John, Jerry and Michael. also a Humphrey O’Leary was a senior class bowler.
These are bowlers that that bowled on a Sunday evening along the main road from O’Driscolls pub in Aughaville to Crowleys pub in Colomane.
The score of bowl started from the roadside sign post about two hundred yard east of the Aughaville cross-roads and ended at the sign post about two hundred yards west of Colomane pub, a distance of two miles.
There are other bowlers that came from Bandon and places near Cork City to bowl from Aughaville to Colomane.
In the Durrus area Danny O’Mahony of Ahagouna reckoned to be the best 84 yard loft with Mick Barry. In his early years on the Dunbeacon Road sometimes Bill Barrett would mark for him.
In the local folklore a son of one of the O’Donovan Landlord families (either That of Timothy of the Cove or Richard of the Fort) was reckoned to be a good bowler. There is an excellent painting in the Crawford Art Gallery Cork of a member of the landlord Smith Barry family of East Cork bowling early 19th century in all his finery.
It has been said that road bowing was introduced to West Cork by weavers from the North of England. In the Durrus/Schull are the Crostons were a weaving family who may have originated in Croston, Lancashire. Another location for bowling is Armagh. Here too there were may families introduced in connection wiht weaving/linen/flax to West Cork in the early 18th century from Co. Armagh, names such as Johnson, Richardson, Shannon. Williamson adn Young among others..