Rachel's Story

Old Stories

My granddad Richard Lyons was born in 1931 and grew up in the Colony in Killeen. He had eight siblings. Times were quite hard in those times. Anyway I have a few stories of my granddad to tell you.


On a side car there were two seats, which were called drop seats which faced away from each other. A horse was attached. The seats were made of foam and there was a stirrup hanging from the horse so you could get on and off. There would be a Foxford rug in each side car to keep people warm when they were traveling. In the middle of the side car there was a little opening with a sliding door. That was used for luggage.

Also pulled by a horse was a trap. The trap was enclosed with a step and a little door to get in.

Every Sunday morning there would be a long line stretching all the way into Louisburgh of houses and side cars and traps as people made their way to Mass.!!


The electricity rule was established in Mayo in the early 1955. All the houses were wired to one big switch and when the switch was turned on all of the houses wired up had electricity. They were going to have the big switch sometime in January. My granddads father died on New Years day. They thought it would be good if they had a bit of light for the wake.

My great uncle knew a man that had something to do with the electricity, so my uncle asked him would he turn on their electricity a bit earlier than everyone else’s for the wake.

The day of the wake came and my granddads electricity was turned on. There was only one light, a wall lamp. Just the area around the lamp was lit up and the rest of the house was dark.

Because that was the first house in the area to get electricity everyone that came to the wake just stood there staring at the light. They couldn’t’ believe it.

After a while the women started to boil the kettle. No one had ever seen a kettle boil without a stove. It was the first electric kettle they had seen. They couldn’t believe that the kettle was boiling on the window sill and not on the hearth.

Writer: Rachel Reed

Teller: Richard Lyons

The original hand written story is available below


Rachel_Reed.pdf (4638k)

This page was added by Brige Woodward on 26/05/2012.

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