Fork lore has it that Hackettstown graveyard got its name from a sailor called Hackett who was washed overboard along the Old Parish coast and was the first person buried in the graveyard. The graveyard is situated in the town land of Baile an tSléibhe Theas but originally it was within the town land of Hackettstown which was a much larger town land at that time. .
The graveyard has various cut-stone grave markers and table tombs, c 1675 – c.1825. There are also remains of a detached three bay single cell Church of Ireland church c. 1675. It is now mostly collapsed. This was a rectangular shape 21 meters east to west and 8.5 meters north to south. Remains of random rubble stone walls can also be seen. The gateway c. 1775, to the grave yard comprises of a pair of unpainted roughcast lime rendered piers with rendered coping and wrought iron gates.
The church was in ruins at the start of the 1700’s. We know this as there is a Maurice Cuirrín who died in 1740 buried within the walls of the church.
The oldest recorded headstone is that of Captain Michael Rowe who died in March 1733. He lived in a caste in Hackettstown, and unfortunately this headstone cannot be located today. There are 77 headstones in the grave yard today with inscriptions
The only record of a member of the clergy buried in the grave yard is that of Fr. Walter Curran C.C. of Passage East who died at 42 years of age in 1857 and he had been a member of the clergy for 17 years at the time of his death. His family was Currans of The Lane , Baile Mhic Airt.
When Fr. Walter Curran C.C. remains were being brought from Passage East, the roads were blocked with a heavy snow fall, the pall bearers stopped off in a watering hole until the roads cleared and because of this he had to be buried at night. It is said that it was a very windy night and none of the candles were blown out with the wind
Richard Ryan of Ballintlea who died in 1813, aged 62 is reputed to have translated the poems of Tadhg Gaelach O Suilleabháin.
There is also a Gabriel McGrath buried in the grave yard, who is said to have been one of the liveliest men in Ireland. He could stop a hare from going out of a field by getting in every gap before him and he could turn a hare three times before catching him.
There is one tomb in the grave yard , this belongs to the Gee family of Lisarow House, Ardmore.
In the ordnance survey map of 1841 there is another church situated across the road from the grave yard. This church was in use until 1839 when the new church in Baile Mhic Airt was built. The school was situated on the Barrack road nears Leahy’s cottage , it moved to the church across from the grave yard until the opening of the new school in Baile Mhic Airt in 1874. The children were led from the school across from the graveyard to the new school in Baile Mhic Airt via the barrack road, by two bands. Mr Browne was the teacher at the time.
The gates were made by a blacksmith by the name of Power who lived near the grave yard. He also made the bolts to bolt the timbers in the new Church.
The famous storm in 1839 caused a lot of the damage in the graveyard and reputedly knocked the walls of the Church.
In Griffin’s evaluation of 1841, a Joanne Lennane was paying dues for the land at the graveyard and a house is said to have been there.
De réir an bhéalóidis fuair reilig Bhaile Haicéid a hainm ó seoltóir darbh ainm Haicéid a bádh ar chósta an tSean Phobail agus ba é an chéad duine a cuireadh sa reilig. Tá an reilig lonnaithe i mbaile fearann Bhaile an tSléibhe Theas ach ar dtús bhí sé lonnaithe i mbaile fearann Bhaile Haicéid a bhí i bhfad níos mó ag an am sin.
Tá roinnt cloiche reilige gearrtha agus tuamaí sa reilig , c 1675 – c.1825. Chomh maith le sin tá eaglais Protastúnach aonair le trí bhá agus cillín amháin ar an láthair. Thit roinnt mhaith de chun talún. Is cruth dronuilleach atá ag an eaglais 21 méadar soir anoir agus 8.5 méadar thuaidh aduaidh. Is féidir iarsmaí de fallaí cloiche gairbhe a fheiscint leis. Tá an tslí isteach c 1775 go dtí an reilig déanta de péire piléar aolchloiche garbhtheilgthe gan aon phéint orthu le geataí iarainn.
Fothrach a bhí san eaglais ag tús na hochtú haoise déag. Tá sé seo ar eolas againn mar gur cuireadh Maurice Cuirrín a fuair bás i 1740 laistigh de fallaí an tséipéil.
‘Sé an cloch chinn is sine go bhfuil cuntas faoi ná cloch le Captain Michael Rowe a fuair bás i Márta 1733. Mhair sé i gcaisleán i mBaile Haicéid, ach faraor ní féidir teacht ar a chloch chinn inniu. Tá 77 cloch chinn sa reilig sa lá atá inniu ann le scríbhinn orthu.
An t-aon chuntas atá againn de bhall den eaglais a bheith curtha sa reilig ná faoin t-Athair Walter Curran C.C ón bPasáiste Thoir a d’éag i 1857 aois 42 agus a bhí mar bhall den eaglais ar feadh 17 bliain ar uair a bháis. Ba iad na Currans ó The Lane, Baile Mhic Airt a chlann.
Nuair a bhí corp an Athar Walter Curran C.C. á iompar ón bPasáiste Thoir, bhí na bóithre dúnta de dheasca an tsneachta trom, stop na hiompróirí i dtábhairne go dtí gur ghlan na bóithre agus mar sin cuireadh é i rith na hoíche. Deirtear gur oíche fíor-ghaofar a bhí ann agus nár séideadh aon choinneal amach leis an ngaoth.
De réir tuairisce d’aistrigh Richard Ryan ó Bhaile an tSléibhe a fuair bás i 1813, aois 62, na dánta a scríobh Tadhg Gaelach Ó Suilleabháin.
Cuireadh Gabriel Mac Craith sa reilig leis, agus deirtear gurb é an fear is aclaí in Éirinn a bhí ann. Stopadh sé giorria a bhí ag iarradh éalú ó pháirc trí buachaint air go gach bearna agus gheobhadh sé é a chasadh trí huaire roimh a bheireadh sé air.
Tá tuama sa reilig, gur le clann Gee ó Lisarow House sa Aird Mhór é.
I mapa na suirbhéireachta ordanáis i 1841, tá séipéal eile suite trasna an bhóthair ón reilig. D’úsáideadh an séipéal seo go dtí 1839 nuair a tógadh séipéal nua i mBaile Mhic Airt. Bhí an scoil lonnaithe ar bhóthar an bheairic in aice le tigh Uí Laocha, ach bhog sé go dtí an séipéal trasna ón reilig go dtí an uair a d’oscail scoil nua i mBaile Mhic Airt i 1874. Chuaigh na páistí faoi stiúir dhá bhanna ceoil ón scoil trasna ón reilig go dtí an scoil nua i mBaile Mhic Airt ar shlí bóthair an bheairic.
Dhein gabha darbh ainm de Paor a chónaigh in aice na reilige na geata. Dhein sé na boltaí chomh maith chun na hadhmaid a bholtáil sa séipéal nua.
Dhein an stoirm cáiliúil i 1839 an chuid damáiste go dtí an reilig agus de réir tuairisce leag sé fallaí an tséipéal.
I measúnú Ghriffin i 1841, bhí Joanne Lennane ag íoc cíosa ar tailte na reilige agus deirtear go raibh tigh ann.