You are here: WorldGenWeb > British IslesGenWeb > IrelandGenWeb > County Mayo
Mayo, Irish Maigh Eo (�Plain of the Yew Trees�) county in the province of Connaught, western Ireland. With an area of 2,084 square miles (5,398 square km), it is bounded by the Atlantic Ocean (north and west) and by Counties Sligo (northeast), Roscommon (east), and Galway (southeast and south). Mayo's extensive coastline is wild and broken, with many inlets from Killala Bay in the north to Killary Harbour in the southwest. Westport and Ballina are port towns, and there are numerous islands and inland lakes. Stretching east and north from Lough (lake) Carrowmore is the largest expanse of bog in Ireland, 200 square miles (520 square km) in area. The principal rivers in Mayo are the Moy and the Errif. The low peaks of Nephin (2,646 feet [807 m]) and Croagh Patrick (2,510 feet [765 m]) dominate the landscape; and Mweelrea (2,688 feet [819 m]), to the north of Killary Harbour, is the highest mountain in Connaught.
At the close of the 12th century the territory that now constitutes County Mayo was granted by King John of England to the Norman William de Burgh, but Mayo remained loosely subject to the Gaelic overlordship of O'Donnell, chief of Tyrconnell. In the 14th century the land passed to a branch of the de Burgh family known as MacWilliam Iochtair. In 1603 Theobald Burke, of the MacWilliam Iochtair, surrendered his lands and received them back to hold with the title of Viscount Mayo.
The county is rich in Neolithic remains and has strong associations with the early Irish ministry of St. Patrick. There are round towers at Killala and Turlough. Ballintober Abbey, founded in 1216, is still in use as a church. Monastic ruins are widespread.
Castlebar is the county town (seat) and an urban district, as are Ballina and Westport. Ballina is the seat of the Roman Catholic bishop of Killala.
In the rugged mountains of the north and west, the farms are small, and most of the population supplements its earnings by migration to Great Britain. Cattle for the British market and sheep and pigs are raised extensively. Tourism is developing, and the area is particularly attractive to fishermen and bird hunters. The county's industries include those in Ballina (flour milling), Westport (clothing), Foxford (woolens), Castlebar (bacon), and Belmullet (toys). Pop. (1986) 115,184.
Mayo Family History Centre
Mayo North Family Heritage Centre
Tel: + 353 (0) 96 31809
Fax: + 353 (0) 96 31885
South Mayo Family Research Centre
Tel: + 353 (0) 92 41214
Fax: + 353 (0) 92 41214
Please make sure to stop by and visit the Genuki - Mayo website for more genealogical resource information about this county.
Queries and Surnames
RootsWeb/Ancestry.com Message Board for County Mayo researchers
- Subscribing. Clicking on one of the shortcut links below should work, but if your browser doesn't understand them, try these manual instructions: to join IRL-MAYO-L, send mail to with the single word subscribe in the message subject and body. To join IRL-MAYO-D, do the same thing with
- Unsubscribing. To leave IRL-MAYO-L, send mail to with the single word unsubscribe in the message subject and body. To leave IRL-MAYO-D, do the same thing with
- Archives. You can search the archives for a specific message or browse them, going from one message to another. Some list archives are not available; if there is a link here to an archive but the link doesn't work, it probably just means that no messages have been posted to that list yet.
Other Ireland Email Lists can be found here: Ireland Index of Mail Lists
This site is part of the IrelandGenWeb Project, a non-profit genealogical resource network.
County Mayo, IrelandGenWeb Coordinator:
� 2001. County Mayo, IrelandGenWeb Project.