Old Castlebar Customs: Wakes in Co. Mayo

In Castlebar, in the early twentieth century wakes were commonplace. At the traditional wake clay pipes were used. Most of the clay pipes used in Castlebar were manufactured in Knockcroghery, Co. Roscommon. Many of these clay pipes are frequently dug up in gardens throughout the town.

In Castlebar there were two types of pipes used.

The Duideen: An Dúidín

This was a small short clay pipe smoked by both women and men. After the wake was over the pipe would be disregarded and dumped.

The Beannacht Dé: An Beannacht Dé

This was similar to the Duideen only it was longer. It’s use was the same. In County Clare a similar pipe was used only the name was longer: Beannacht Dé ar anam na marbh.

The use of snuff was also used at wakes in the region. In the late 19th century and early years of the 20th century the town had its own tobacco factory.

Article by Brian Hoban, Local Historian Advanced Certificate in Marine and Countryside Guiding.©