Explore Maam Cross
Gleann an Mháma (‘Maam Valley’ in English) is the heart of the Dúiche Sheoighe (know in English as ’Joyce’s country’) whose trackless hills once offered sheep stealers and outlaws a safe place to hide.
‘He made its crooked ways straight’
Civil engineer Alexander Nimmo mapped the area and built roads, bridges, and piers, opening up Connemara to travellers and trade. He proposed 343 miles of new or improved roads in 1813, most of which he went on to build. Corrib Lodge was his home and office, with a view down his straight new road from Maam Cross. Workmen queued on the stairs to be paid on the balcony of his house. After Nimmo’s death, Corrib Lodge became an inn.
Going, going, gone
Flocks of sheep, ponies, ducks, and donkeys have regularly made their way along the road between An Mám and Maam Cross, ‘the Piccadilly of Connemara’. For centuries Maam Cross has been a marketplace where livestock is still traded at the weekly auction mart.
Although his father liked to claim descent, poet James Joyce was not related directly to the Joyce clan who ruled this area in the Middle Ages.