Ennis Courthouse was built in 1850 in a Neoclassical style to the designs of Joseph B Keane and Henry Whitestone. The first attempt to hold a court in County Clare was recorded to have been held in the Franciscan Abbey located in the centre of the town in 1570. In front of the Courthouse is a little park where a statue of Eamon De Valera stands. In 1917 De Valera was selected to contest the East Clare by-election and so began his long association with the town and county before rising to become Ireland’s Taoiseach. There is also a large Russian cannon located here which is a trophy of the Crimean war. The town takes its name from “Inis”, meaning an island which was formed between two streams of the River Fergus and it’s history is intimately linked with that of the O’Brien family, descendants of Brian Boru.

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