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NAAS - BASIN STREET in 1901 and 1911

1901 AND 1911 CENSUS
            From 1821 a Census was carried out in Ireland every ten years. Unfortunately, a large amount of this material was destroyed in 1922, and some of it was never preserved. The census returns for Basin Lane, as it was known in 1901, gave fifteen dwellings and a total of sixty-two inhabitants. All dwellings, except No. 15, were classed as second-class houses. The address of No. 15 was given as Naas Gaol. While deemed not inhabited it was given as the residence of Richard Murray, an accountant, and was possibly used as his office. No. 1 was listed as a barbershop and occupied by Peter Boyne, his wife, Jane, and their four sons. Peter Boyne’s birthplace was given as Co. Kildare, while his wife’s Co. Antrim, and his four sons that of India. Peter was an army pensioner and his three eldest sons ran a barbershop in the dwelling. Edward Moylett ran a delph shop in No. 2. He lived there with his wife, son, daughter-in-law and two grandchildren. They were classed as a professional family. Edward was born in Co. Mayo, his wife and son in Dublin, while his daughter-in-law and grandchildren were born in Co. Kildare. The rest of the houses were listed as private dwellings. John Carroll, a railway officer lived with his two sisters and one brother in No. 3. All were in their thirties and were born in Co. Kildare. Mary Farrell, a fruit dealer, lived at No. 4 with her two daughters, two sons, son-in-law John Behan, born in Dublin, and granddaughter. Thomas and Mary Plant lived at No. 5 and had a lodger, Thomas Nolan, a widower and shoemaker, while next door Anne Dunne had two married couples, John and Bridget Heffernan, and Thomas and Sarah Moore, as lodgers. (The first five houses were two-story dwellings.)
            Richard Gibbons, a poultry dealer, lived in No. 7 with his wife, two sons and three daughters, aged from twenty-four to nine. Next door lived Michael McCann, a retired coal merchant, while Michael Fitzpatrick, a labourer born in Co. Kildare, lived in No.9 with his wife, Mary, a native of Co. Wicklow. John O’Brien lived in No. 10 with his wife and six year old son. He was born in Waterford, while his wife was born in Co. Kildare. Charles H. Hewitt, twenty-two, from Yorkshire, and his nineteen-year-old wife from Lancashire, lived in No. 11. He was a sergeant in the Royal Dublin Fusiliers, based in Naas barracks. Patrick Loughran, a carpenter, from Co. Wicklow, lived next door with his wife, Kate, four sons and one daughter, aged twelve to one year old. The youngest three children were born in Kildare. John Ryan, a cartier, lived in No. 14 with his brother and sister and twenty-five year old nephew, also John. All were born in Co. Kildare.
            In the 1911 Census a lot had changed in Basin Lane. Now it was known as Basin Street. All fifteen houses were occupied and the population had increased to seventy-five. Peter Boyne had moved to No. 5 from No. 1. While two of his sons were listed as hairdressers there is no mention of the dwelling being used as a barbershop. Annie Dwyer, a widow lived in No. 1 with her four daughters, one of whom was a dressmaker. Two more widows lived next door, Katherine Ivers, seventy-three, and her sister, Bridget O’Brien, sixty-nine. Edward Sullivan, a gardener, lived in No. 3 with his wife and two young sons. He was thirty and his wife, Katie, thirty-two. James Broughal, his wife and fifteen-year-old son, Michael, a telegraph boy with the NGR, lived next door. Michael Perkins, a fifty-seven-year old carpenter, lived at No. 6 with his wife, Ellen, forty-seven, and five children, one a machinist, one a carpet maker and the rest listed as scholars. All were born in Co. Kildare. Limerick-born William Brown, a groom, lived with his wife, five sons and one daughter in No. 7. The two oldest boys were gardeners, while the daughter was listed as a mother’s help. Thomas Guilfoyle was listed as the head of the household for No. 8, but only his five children aged sixteen to eight, are listed in the census return. All were born in Kildare.
Michael Boughal, a postman, lived at No. 9 with his wife Margaret, while Annie Short and her daughter, Bella Baker, seventeen, lived next door. Annie was born in England, while her daughter was listed as born in Kildare. Daniel McDonald, a widower and unemployed printer, lived in No. 11. His son, Thomas, a printer compositor, and his wife Margaret Rafferty and their two children also lived there. Kate Loughran still lived at No. 12, though her husband had died. Her six sons and two daughters still resided at home. The three eldest sons were listed as grocery porters. Patrick Ryan and his sister, Mary, moved to No. 13 and had three lodgers: Dublin-born Lance Corporal Edward Keogh and his wife and two young daughters, the youngest born in Kildare; builders labourer Patrick Gleeson and his wife and three month-old baby; and Edward Doyle, an agricultural labourer, his wife and eight-month old son. Arthur Wright, a thirty-three year old RIC constable, lived with his wife and two young children, both born in Co. Kildare, at No. 14, while No. 15 was occupied by Patrick Walsh, a house painter from Carlow, and his Kildare born wife and infant son.
At present Basin Street has changed from a mainly residential area to a bustling commercial sidestreet of the town. The residents have fallen to a handful and the there are now only twelve buildings. Nos 1 and 2 house a photographic gallery; No. 3 is an adult store, No. 4 a charity shop, while No. 5 was a tattoo parlour, and is now vacant. No. 7 is a doctor’s surgery, No. 10 a citizen’s information office and both Nos 11 and 12 are chartered accountants. Only Nos 6, 8 and 9 house residents.
For more information on Naas and the development of social housing in Naas and indeed Co. Kildare in general, check out James Durney's new book - In the Shadow of Kings

James Durney published 'In the Shadow of Kings, Social Housing in Naas 1898-1984' on 8 November 2007. Here he examines the make-up of Basin Street in Naas in 1901 and 1911 according to the Census returns. Our thanks to James 

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