Gortnacart N.S. – A Brief History

Historical photo of the school

Gortnacart or Ghort na Ceártan means ‘field of the forge’. There must have been a forge in the area many years ago.

The present building is situated on a side road off the main Ardara – Glenties road. It is on a small elevated site approximately two miles from Ardara. The school was built in 1909 to replace an older school located across the road, where Colvin Baskin’s sheds are now.

Historical photo of the school

The land was donated to the school by Mary and Francis Shovlin. They had moved from America a few years earlier and had bought the farm from Owen Roe Gallagher for £201.00. The foundations for the new school were excavated close to the road but it was decided to build the new school further back.
James Sweeney was the stonemason and voluntary labour was supplied by the parents from the children who came from the various townlands.

Over 800 children have attended the school from the opening to the present day.
The following were the principals down to the present day:

  1. Master Braddon
  2. Master Leo Howley
  3. Mrs. Kathleen O Donnell
  4. Master Eamonn Mc Gill
  5. Mrs. Bríd Hennigan

The Class of 1909 with Master Bradden and Mrs. Bradden