Carrignamuck Castle and Dripsey Castle
The Castle of Carrignamuck (Dripsey Castle) stands approximately one mile from the village on the banks of the River Dripsey. It is one of a chain of castles extending from Blarney to beyond Macroom, all formerly the property of the Lords of Muskerry.
Cormac Mac Teige MacCarthy, Lord of Muskerry, built Blarney Castle, one of the most famous castles in Ireland. He also built Carrignamuck Castle, among others, during the latter part of the 15th Century.
It was usual for the Lords to have trusted relatives living in their outlying castles, who would support the Lord with his own guards when required. It is known that the Lord of Muskerry lived at that time in Blarney Castle and that his successor was always posted at Carrignamuck Castle. Lord Cormac’s brother Eoghan lived for a time at Carrignamuck, until Cormac was killed during an argument between the two brothers. Because he had killed his brother, the Lord, Eoghan’s claims on the title were denied and he was debarred from succession.
On the death of Sir Cormac MacTeige, in 1583, his next brother Callaghan succeeded as Lord of Muskerry. He, however, gave up his position at the end of that year in favour of his nephew, Cormac MacDermod. Callaghan was allowed to resume his residency at Carrignamuck as his nephew’s Lieutenant and this situation eventually became permanent and he founded a branch of the family called the MacCarthy’s of Carrignamuck. His son Cormac inherited the estate, but forfeited it in 1641.
About 1650, Cromwellian troops, under Lord Broghill, attacked Dripsey Castle and captured it. Many years after this it was bought by the Colthurst family and they built a house in the grounds. Later, in 1903, it was bought by Andrew O’Shaughnessy, the industrialist and politician and it has remained in his family ever since, although it has not been lived in for many years.