Facts about Callow
Callow, An Caladh, "the lakeside meadow", refers in its name to the fine fishing waters and beautiful Callow Lough - Upper and Lower.
Here in this townland also lies evidence of mans' habitation for the last five millenia. Pre-bog sites, like those found at Ceide, wedge tombs, habitation sites, ring forts, bullaun stones, dolmens, crannoga, standing stones and fulachtadh fiadh are all evidence of ancient man's activity. All of these have been left imprinted on the Callow landscape preserved by generations as was our living heritage.
Callow Church, the Church of St.Thomas the Apostle, was built in 1863 to replace the earlier church of 1811 and was renovated in 1948. A penal crucifix with a date of 1759 and extensive symbolic carvings is preciously preserved by a family in the area.
There are all types of interest here for the angler, the bird watcher, the geologist, the archaeologist and the climber. The abounding presence of wild life makes Callow one of the few remaining areas of unspoilt Ireland.
The word Callow comes from "Cala" which means a marshy meadow along a river or lake. Callow is bound on the north and east by the villages of Carrick and Carn respectively which is high stoney ground as the name suggest, and to the west by the lakes. Callow is valley shaped, bounded on the North by hills and the West by the Upper and Lower Lakes. The are approximately 95 acres in each lake. They are laden with trout and surrounded by some of the best scenery in Mayo including the surrounding purple heather hills and green woods. They are fed by numerous streams, but the two major one's are Baile An Mhuileann which drains Loch Much from which Foxford gets its water supply and the forge stream. The Ballina to Dublin road meanders through the village from West to East.The first people to come to Callow were the O'Ruanes. They had a castle on the top of Sron, a mountain in Killasser and another on the island on the Lower Lake, on which the ruins of it can be seen to this day. It was from a well in Callow, called St.Lasser's Well that Killasser and Toomore got it's names. It is situated on the shore of the Upper Lake beside the boathouse. The parish of Killasser was called after it in honour of St.Lasser. Long ago people used to come and pray at the well and on one accasion a group of people looked over in the direction that Toomore is now and said "There are two more coming". It was from this expression that Toomore got it's name.