Drumslide in Ballycroy in Co. Mayo

Drumslide - The origin of its name is unsure but most would agree that sleighs/sleds/slides were used to carry turf down hill and as this townland is on the side of a hill it probably got its name in that manner.

It contains 1,061 acres and had 16 houses, the householders being as follows: Anthony Finn, Patrick Sweeney, Andrew O'Boyle, James Murray, Phelim Murray, Patrick Canning, John Cleary Snr., Peter Cleary, John Cleary (Peter), Anthony Cafferkey, John Cafferkey, James Cafferkey, Andrew Cleary, John Cleary, Anthony Keane, Patrick Keane and the landlord was Rev. Archer Clive.

There is a pre-historic tomb in the land owned by Thomas Lynch.

Drumslide School was opened on 12th May, 1869, and the first pupils enrolled there were as follows: Francis Atkinson, Robert Atkinson, Joseph Conway, Benjamin Conway and Bartley Doran. Girls: Mary Atkinson, Catherine Conway, Margaret Leneghan, Bridget Conway and Ellen Conway.

Very Rev. John Gilvarry, who lived at Blenkeragh, was Parish Priest during its construction and played a major part in solving a demoninational dispute at its opening. He was great granduncle of Very Rev. J. Gilvarry, P.P., at present serving in Killala Diocese in Easkey. He was replaced by Fr. William McDermott, who became the first manager.

Its first teacher was a Mr. Joseph Langan, who, apparently, came from by Knappagh outside Westport and who lived in Tallagh. He was succeeded by Mr. Henen, whose family composed songs of the area. A teacher's salary then was £8 per quarter, while an assistant got £3.50 per quarter.

This school at Drumslide apparently replaced those at Tallagh and Fahy and of special significance was the use of cut limestone, which obviously came from outside the parish.

The new school was opened in 1946 and keeping pattern with many other rural schools has shown a decline in numbers attending which were at their highest in the 1950's.

Other principal teachers were James Sweeney, his wife, Mary E. Sweeney (nee Ward); P.J. Barrins and Martin Costello at the present time.

written by Martin Costello, NT