Coopers & Coopering

Demonstrating the coopering trade is Eamonn Creamer – Granard Cooper 

Coopers were skilled craftsmen who fashioned all types of barrels, casks and churns for use in the dairy and brewery industries, but now their skills have all but disappeared with the onset of initially, aluminium containers and later stainless steel containers, which are still used to this day. Over the decades there were some very skilled Coopers in Granard, Co. Longford, including a local Granard family who made the barrels/kegs for Guinness Brewery.

See the tools of the trade here



A spade for cutting turf.  These implements were very common all over Ireland up until quite recently.  There was a right-handed & left-handed slean and obviously it was very important to have the correct implement for a productive day on the bog!  Turf cutting was very popular in North County Longford. (Breast Sléan). The one shown in our video is a right-handed sléan.

Wooden Barrel

Butter Pail

Wooden barrels and casks were made by coopers throughout the country and were used in different ways and places, including, the farmhouse, the dairy and particularly in the brewery trade.



When the butter making process was completed butter was taken to the market in the Firkin.  A Firkin was a British unity for the sale of butter and cheese.  1 Firkin = 56 pounds = 25 kilograms.

Dash Churn

This is just one type of butter churn, there were many different types of churns for making butter. This particular type was driven by horse power and was a popular churn of its time, it was mainly used by larger producers.

A Fine Romance

This Ford Model T. Car, restored by Eamon Creamer, was owned by Larry Kiernan, Granard, (brother to Kitty Kiernan), Larry was also the owner of the Greville Arms Hotel, in Granard and the car was used during 1916 Rising and War of Independence.  The car was also used for transport by Michael Collins on his visits to Granard for both political and romantic reasons!

Granard – A Market Town

Our very own renowned local Historian Jimmy Donoghue discusses the Market Town of Granard.

Granard Town image: National Library of Ireland – French, Robert, and William Lawrence. The Lawrence Photograph Collection. [ca. 1865-1943].


Eamonn McIntyre demonstrates and describes the use of the old iron before the introduction of ‘the electric’ to rural Ireland.