A short History of Derry

Derry or Doire which is the Gaelic meaning Oak Grove on the banks of the lovely River Foyle has a very comprehensive and interesting history. It has been a place inhabited by people since prehistoric times. Doire/Derry was once an Oak grove held sacred by Druids of an elder faith. It then became the site of a monastery founded by St Columb Cille who left the place in self exile from a rock at Thornhill in the North of the city where Thornhill College School and Thornhill Convent now stands. There is a rock which still bears his foot print and is held sacred by many Catholics and Christians.

Derry was also a place that was given investment by English Kings, making it a thriving port city and one of the largest cities in Ireland for many generations. The name Londonderry comes from the investments by the London Guilds. It has also seen much violence of constant attacks and invasions by the English and Gaelic Lords, such as the famous Cahir O'Doherty who burned the city to the ground after killing an English Garrison. It is also a city famous for being a walled city that has on two occasions helped in its defence during long sieges. The most famous siege was by the English King James, in person. To be denied the city, he would have no strong foot-hold in the North West of Ireland. This factor contributed to his defeat by the opposing forces of William of Orange at the Battle of the Boyne. Altering Irish and English History for the next few hundred years.

Derry has borne and witnessed some of the worst attrocities in the history of the Northern Ireland troubles. One of these is Bloody Sunday. The history before and after makes this city a very special place to visit. It is not only that it has a detailed history that makes it a good place to visit. Its history is in plain view and the Walls still stand, almost completely as they did during the second siege under King James. The famous Bogside still stands and can be seen from Creggan. From the walls lays an impressive array of murals and monuments dedicated to the struggle of both communities. Visiting the murals of Derry can take almost up to a full day. Both communities hold different views of the history of this beautiful city, histories they are only to glad to share and these communities that has shared the history of Derry/Doire/Londonderry have many impressive artistic displays.

Derry hosts history from the very ancient to the very modern. It is a city that has a heritage that has affected British society as much as it has affected Irish society. Not only can you instantly see the history but, the natives would be happy to tell you their own.

Derry has a number of Museums. The three most Prominent are the Tower Museum, The Harbour Museum and the Foyle Railway Museum. Each has an impressive array of exhibits and friendly professional staff that can easily answer any historical questions visitor's might have. If you are only interested in the history of the city and are not planning to visit anything else, the following website gives a short but accurate account of Derry's History. www.geographia.com/northern-ireland

Tourist Information can be found at  www.derryvisitor.com