Due to the lack of ancient Irish family records, the connections between all the Killough families of Ireland are not known.  Over the years, many Killoughs have tried to find more with little success.  However, several families that have been reported to us are written up in the Killough/Kellough Family book in this web site.  Here is a family story that shows how life there was in the early 1900ís.  The location in County Antrim is near where Aunt Martha of the James Killough family lived.  It is taken from an article called "Families called by the Name "CROMIE" by Alexander Stuart Cromie.  His grandmother was Rose Stevenson Killough.  His mother was Sarah Morton Killough.  She was born in 1880, married Samuel James Cromie, and died in 1973.

The Killough Family, Carnageeragh, Kilraghts

To my mother Carnageeragh was "Home".  Very often on a Monday evening she would say to my father, "Are we going home tomorrow?  He would reply, "Is this not your home?  Tuesday was the half holiday and, after school, we visited Killoughs at Carnageragh, then the McClures at Magerbuoy, and the Gardiner family at Ballyrobin on the way back to Ballymoney.  When leaving Ballymoney, where she had lived for almost seventy years, she said, "I suppose Iíll never see home again."  It was some time later I realised by home she meant Carnageeragh, not Ballymoney.

I remember my grandfather sitting around with neighbours, like Tom McClure around the open turf fire, most of them smoking clay pipes and discussing affairs of church and state.  He was a liberal in politics, with a leaning towards Home Rule, and a great protagonist for Tenent rights, but was prepared to give the landlord his due.  He has a lovely tenor voice and even when over eighty years of age would sing very sweetly "My Poor Betsy Gray", a song with a United Irishmen background.  The women and children clustered round the table out of the menís way.

The Barn had an inbuilt threshing machine, driven by horses, pulling a mechanical arm, linked to the machine by an underground mechanism.  A parlour was added to the house about 1920, and of special interest to a towney was the dry two seater toilet, sited near the farm midden (a dunghill or refuse heap).

One Christmas was spent in the Home Farm, and I remember the excitement when we hung up our stockings above the open chimney and being chased to bed when we peeped round the banister to see Santa Claus coming.

My brother Robert Stevenson (Cromie) spent many holidays at Carnageeragh, but I stayed with my Grandfatherís sister "Aunt Jane" OíNeill.  She lived with her three daughters Nancy, Belle and Mary on a lane, which ran from the Ballymoney road to the Road to Stranocum.  Her son David OíNeill had emigrated as did Belle and Mary. However, Belle and Mary returned home, and took charge of the shop and Post Office on the Ballymoney road.  A Home Coming party was held in a Barn, and although only six or seven years of age I was allowed to "Dance the whole night through."  Looking back I have many happy memories of Country Life. Companionship with Jip the dog, bringing home the cattle, and with some reluctance helping to gather the spuds during potato digging.  The house was thatched, and had one window with a small pane, which had twenty cracks in it, caused by the dog jumping at it to catch a fly.  I learned that when making tea, the teapot was placed on live peat ashes, and allowed to plump to ensure that the tea was fully infused.  At night as the fire was covered over, the crickets raised their voices in song.

A travelling salesman taught me to sing "The Oul Orange Flute" perhaps to counter my grandfatherís liberal influence.  Aunt Jane was greatly concerned with "my bare knees", although country children were running about without shoes and stockings.

She found it difficult to adjust to new ideas.  My father took an interest in the newly introduced Radio Service.  To raise money for some good cause a hall was hired, a very tall aerial was erected, a newly invented Valve radio borrowed and tickets sold.

When Aunt Jane heard about it she said "Sam, Iíll never believe that a voice could jump over all those hedges and dykes between here and Belfast."  On this occasion, she was proved to be correct, because when the night of the demonstration arrived, all the oratory the self appointed experts could produce was a series of oscillations from the loud speakers, accompanied by not so complimentary comments from the audience.

My mother remembered the McCammon family with affection, and even at 90 years of age could repeat every metrical psalm in the psalter.  She said that when helping to harvest the crops, the children had a page of the psalm book pinned to the sleeve of coat or jumper, and learned as they worked.  The task was to repeat a new psalm each Sabbath.  To her there was no church like Kilraughts and I can imagine her feeling of loss, when she learned that on the morning of Palm Sunday, 4th, April, 1971 Kilraughts Church was burnt to the ground.



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