Scurlogstown or Scurlockstown, derives its name from William de Scurlog, who erected a castle here about 1180. This was probably the motte and bailey castle.
Scurlogstown Graveyard is on the south bank of the river Boyne on a little hill. It had a walk around it. The graveyard is now surrounded by a good stone wall and is situated in a field close to the main road. The little Boycetown River passes close to it and in olden days drove a mill (Scurlogstown) and then passed between the motte and bailey and entered the Boyne. The motte still remains but in recent years the bailey was removed.
Scurlogstown Church ruins are situated in the north end of the graveyard and are of the nave chancel type. In 1200, Walter de Lacy confirmed to the Abbey of St. Thomas, Dublin, the Church of William Scorlagge’s town, and that of Lethercor (Laracor). In the 1400s Scurlogstown church and mill was granted to the Bishop of Meath being in the hands of William Silk in the 1430s and 40s and then Edmond Oldhall in the 1450s. By the sixteenth century Scurlogstown parish was under the control of the monastery at Newtown, Trim. Following the confiscation of the monasteries the property of the church at Scurlogstown became the property of the Ashe family. In 1622 the curate Alexander Sharpe, was ordered to repair the chancel of the church. The church has been in ruins since at least 1641. In 1682 the graveyard was not fenced and a man named Crawford rented a shop in the ruined church.
In 1837 there were fragments of the church, consisting of two rude circular arches and in 1849 there was a trefoil east window. All the headstones are situated on the south side of the church ruins and many large yew trees grow close to them.
The headstones recall the following local families: Stone, Brien of Breemount, Rickard, Byrne, Grogan of Braymount, Neville of Maudlins and Kilcooley, Trim, Hamilton of Greenbatter, Young of Dangan, Mooney of Grangemooney near Trim, Bailey of Stonestown, Connor and Halford. The oldest stone in Scurlogstown is to the Mooney family and in particular to Cornelius Mooney who died 10th March 1730 aged 101 years. There is an ancient cross buried in the graveyard which was recorded by Sir William Wilde in 1849.
A motte castle is an artificial, steep-sided, earthen mound on or in which is set the principal wooden tower of a castle. Scurlogstown motte, probably erected about 1180, is an oval, flat-topped and grass-covered mound about 120m to the north at the other end of the ridge
The stone Scurlogstown Castle was probably constructed in the fifteenth or sixteenth century to replace the fortification at the motte. The castle was on high ground nearby but on the other side of the by-road to Bective crossroads. The ruins of this structure was still in existence until 1850 but was gone by 1865 and consisted of a solid square, with rounded towers for the stairs at two of the angles and few windows. It was similar to the castles at Asigh and Trubly. Not a trace of Scurlogstown Castle now remains. It’s site lies in the grounds of the Scurlogstown Business Park. During the construction of the Business Park part of the site was excavated. Testing in December 2001 revealed the survival of medieval and post-medieval walls, floors and features at the west side of the site, near the demolished tower-house. Mid-17th-century buildings and a possible kiln were revealed in the westernmost trenches south of the demolished tower-house. Probable medieval gullies were also revealed at the centre of the north side of the site.
The Bereford family were the landlords of Scurlogstown in the 1620s and also held Newtown Trim and Culmullen. The Scurlock family were still in the area as in 1633 Barnaby Scurlock gave some land to the Earl of Fingal to be used by Edward Lynch of the Knock (Summerhill).
In August 1647 Michael Jones and the Parliamentary Army advanced to Tara, where he reviewed his troops, and next day marched to Scurlogstown, where he encamped. The following day he marched to Trimbleston, where a small garrison that had been left by Thomas Preston surrendered to him. A few days later Preston defeated the Irish Confederate army at Dungan’s Hill, near Summerhill. Coins of Charles I were discovered at Scurloghstown in 1946 but all other details of the find circumstances are not known. The hoard included three coins, two shillings and one halfcrown. In the Ireland of the 1640s there was a huge amount of uncertainty due to the military conflict, famine and forced movement of people. Perhaps the coins were deposited by a local who feared being found with them by the Parliamentary forces.
There is a tradition that Scurlock of Scurlockstown and his brother from the Rock confronted Cromwell at a site called Cromwell’s Hill, near Grange. Cromwell did not come to this area of the county but his forces did.
Scurlogstown Knock The Millwheel at Sculougstown, courtesy of JJ 0’Dwyer.
The old mill – Scurlogstown Olympiad started there back in the late 1960s. There were 6 stories in the mill and the millowner’s house was on a corner of the Dublin road (road at that time). I saw the mill race and where the wheel would have been. Huge cast iron bolts and some lovely stone work. The mill goes back to the 1700s. There are references to John Keefe of Knock Mills at Scurlogstown in trade directories – oats and meal from around 1843 and are in the newspapers of the time. In Rathmolyon Graveyard is a gravestone which reads: Erected by Richard Keefe of Knock Mills in memory of his mother Mary Keefe who dept this life 20th August 1837 aged 56 years of his father John Keefe who dept this life 8th May 1843 aged 64 years and of his sister Judith Keefe who dept. this life in 1825 Mr Thomas Keefe who departed this life 23rd of January 1850 aged 35 years. Requiescat in Pace. I vaguely recall seeing a headstone in Glasnevin Cemetery to the next generation of O’Keeffes.