Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
County Clare (An Clįr in Irish) is in the Irish province of Munster. It is located on the west coast of Ireland, northwest of the River Shannon and bordering Lough Derg. Area: 3,147 km² (1,215 square miles). Its capital is the town of Ennis.
County Clare succeeded the district of Thomond (which was part of Connacht), and when first created it was sometimes called County Thomond. Its nickname is the Banner County, which refers to a former local tradition of carrying banners at political meetings and public occasions.
County Clare contains The Burren, a unique karst landscape area of limestone hills and fields, Bunratty Castle, and is considered to be the centre of traditional Irish music today. At the western edge of The Burren, facing the Atlantic Ocean, are the Cliffs of Moher. It is also the location of Shannon Town.
Percy French, a 19th Century Balladist, wrote his most famous song Are Ye Right There Michael lambasting the inefficient rail network in the country at that time – and particularly, the West Clare Railway. French recounts his journey by rail between the Clare towns of Ennis and Kilkee. Unfortunately, bad as the rail network was in French's day, most of the system was closed starting in the 1940s. It was dug up and dismantled by successive governments over several decades in the 1950s, 60s and 70s as it was deemed uneconomic. See History of rail transport in Ireland.
Towns/Parishes in County Clare
- Clarecastle, Cratloe
- Ennis, Ennistimon
- Kilkee, Killadysert, Killaloe, Kilrush
- Lahinch, Liscannor, Lisdoonvarna, Lissycasey
- Mountshannon, Meelick
- Shannon Town, Sixmilebridge, Spanish Point
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