Connemara's First Settlers
The first settlers in Connemara settled mainly along the shoreline and rivers. They were hunter-gatherers and the main legacy they have left behind is 'middens' or ancient dumping sites which are found along the coast.
Farming began in Connemara approximately 6000 years ago. Evidence suggests that the settlers began to clear the woods in the valleys and that it was predominantly pastoral farming with some arable farming. They also continued to fish and hunt. The vast amount of megalithic tombs which dot the landscape in Connemara are reminders of these first farmers and their beliefs and rituals.
Many of the standing stones, stone alignments and burial monuments in Connemara date to the Bronze Age. The Celts emerged from Europe about 1000 B.C and brought with them new skills and traditions which have survived in Ireland to the present day. They were a warrior class and evidence of this shows in the remains of cliff top forts and crannogs which can be found in Connemara today. Reconstructions of a ring fort and a crannog are found on the grounds of the heritage centre.
|Connemara Heritage Centre, Lettershea, Clifden, Connemara. Tel: +353 95 21808 Fax: +353 95 22098 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org|