Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Cork. 1. A county in the province of Munster, the largest and most southerly of the counties of Ireland - 110 miles long by 70 broad, and containing 2,890 square miles. The county is hilly and much diversified, being in the W. rocky and mountainous, wild and boggy, and in the S. and E. rich, fertile, and picturesque. The 250 miles of coast are bold and rocky. There are many bays, running from three to twenty-five miles inland, from Bantry Bay to Youghal harbour, the best-known being Cork harbour. Of the islands in the county, Cape Clear is the chief. The mountains run chiefly E. and W., and divide it into three principal river basins - the Blackwater, the Lee, and the Bandon. There are also many lakes. The Munster coal-field occupies the N.W., and coal, iron, copper, and marble are the chief minerals. The climate is moist, but genial, and the county is noted for its dairy produce. The cattle are small, but yield abundance of milk. The chief trade is in leather, tweed, whiskey, malt liquor, and, above all, in provisions. Cork sends seven members to Parliament.

2. The capital of the county Cork, and forming a county in itself on the Lee, eleven miles above the mouth, and 166 miles from Dublin, is partly on a group of islands forming a swamp, and partly on the banks of the river, which is crossed by a bridge. The houses, which are for the most part of old red sandstone, present a striking appearance. There is a park of 400 acres, and an elm-shaded promenade called the Mardyke, and a good cemetery. The unevenness of the land, with here and there overhanging heights, makes Cork a fine city. The church of St. Anne, Shandon, has a tower 170 feet high. The Protestant cathedral, the Bishop's palace, the Queen's College, and the Science and Art Academy are among the most striking buildings. The harbour is ten square miles in extent, and its four quays admit vessels of 2,000 tons. Seven lines of steamers visit the harbour, which is entered by a channel two miles long and one wide, and contains several large islands. It is protected by batteries, and at Spike Island there is a torpedo defence and powerful submarine batteries. Passage and Queenstown are well known as places of call for mail steamers and ships awaiting orders. The principal manufactures are leather, iron, friezes, gloves, flour, malt liquors, and whiskey, and the exports provisions, leather, tweeds, and live stock. The suburbs abound in villas. Cork sends two members to Parliament. An abbey was founded here by St. Finbar in 600. The Danes walled the city in the ninth century, and in 1172 King Dermot McCarthy surrendered it to Henry I. It was taken by Cromwell in 1649, and by Marlborough in 1690. James II. landed here in 1688. Here William Penn became a Quaker, and a statue commemorates the labours of Father Mathew.