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Ballitore Quaker Museum is housed in the restored Meeting House of the Society of Friends in Ballitore, Co. Kildare. Ballitore is a charming village founded by the Quakers in the 1700’s. The village still retains a spirit of simplicity and modesty consistent with Quaker values. Due to the writings of Mary Leadbeater and her correspondence with such people as Mary Edgeworth and Edmund Burke, Ballitore is widely known. The Quakers from Yorkshire, who founded Ballitore, transformed the valley into rich fertile farmlands, and developed the town as a Quaker Settlement. In fact, Ballitore is the only planned and permanent Quaker Settlement in Ireland.
Ballitore is home to several historical buildings. In 1975 the Meeting House of the Society of Friends which had fallen into ruin was restored by Kildare County Council and it has served as the library for the Ballitore area since then. The Museum, which is incorporated into the library, contains a selection of artefacts and memorabilia of a mainly local nature. Items of Quaker interest include a wedding dress and bonnet worn by Marian Richardson at Ballitore in 1853. In the entrance hall are the door and lintel stone from the original Shackleton home at Harden in Yorkshire which was built in 1660. Also in the entrance hall is a ledger dated 1807-1810 for the Shackleton mills at Lucan. Amongst the Ballitore manuscripts on display are Shackleton’s letters and notebooks, which contain water colours by Mary Shackleton and the Ballitore Magazine.
Open Tues-Sat 12 noon – 5.00 pm. Closed on Bank Holidays & weekends.
Quaker Museum, Ballitore, Co. Kildare (Ballitore is situated between Kilcullen and Castledermot, just off the N 9. As you enter the village of Ballitore turn left in the centre square – the Meeting House is about 200 metres on the right).
Tel: 059 8623344