Ryland writes, in his The
History, Topography and Antiquities of the County and City of Waterford
"After the suppression of the monastery of the Franciscans, or Grey
Friars, the master, brethren, and poor of the Hospital of the Holy Ghost
were incorporated in their place, by patent dated 15th August, 36 Henry
VIII. (1546). We may collect from this patent, and another of the same
monarch, dated 7th of September, of the same year, that Henry Walsh had
purchased the house or monastery of the Franciscans, together with all
the property which anciently belonged to it, in trust for the master,
brethren and poor of the hospital, who were to pay annually for the same
eight shillings Irish money, in addition to a former sum of £150:13:4,
the consideration for which the grant was made. According to the terms of the first patent, the master and his successors, with the advice and consent of the mayor, bailiffs and four senior of the common-council, had power to nominate and elect, from time to time, three or four secular priests for celebrating divine service in the hospital, of which they were to be considered as brethren, and to be removable for just cause: they had also the nomination of sixty at least of the sick, infirm and impotent poor of both sexes, of the city of Waterford; and all those persons, thus elected, together with the master, were to be a corporation for ever. They were to be allowed to possess land to the value of £100 per annum and no more.
'And further,' it is added, 'of our more abundant grace, we give
certain possessions for the support of said master, brethren and poor,
in order that they may pray for our prosperity while we live, and for our souls when we shall
depart this life, and for the souls of all our progenitors, and for the prosperity of the said
hospital, and for the soul of Patrick Walsh, and for the prosperity of Catherine Sherlock
his wife, and for her soul, and for the souls of all the faithful.'
They were also permitted to enjoy the offerings of all persons residing within the precincts of the late monastery; to bury within the church or cemetery, and to administer all kinds of sacraments. By the original patent, the election of a master is vested in the heirs of Patrick
Walsh, with the consent of the mayor, bailiffs and four senior
common-council-men, for the time being.
Queen Elizabeth, by patent dated 26th June, 24th year
of her reign, confirmed the former grants."
Hospital, as described by Ryland, was situated in a building that
was erected against the ancient Franciscan monastery. Over the entrance
was the following inscription: "The Holy Ghost Hospital, founded
by Patrick Walsh in 1545, and was repaired and enlarged in 1741 and
1743, by William Paul and Simon John Newport, Esqrs. mayors. Simon
Newport, Master." Even though the Walsh's were forced to leave
the city during the Cromwellian period they were allowed by the
Protestant corporation to continue appointing Catholic masters to the
In the nineteenth century the hospital removed to the
suburbs and in 1882 the present hospital was built. A stone over the
main entrance reads as follows:
HOSPITAL OF THE HOLY GHOST FOUNDED 15TH AUGUST 1545 BY
PATRICK & HENRY WALSH, MERCHANTS OF THIS CITY. FIRST MASTER
WAS HENRY WALSH. THE HOSPITAL ORIGINALLY STOOD ON THE SITE OF THE OLD
MONASTERY OF THE GREY FRIARS & THIS BUILDING WAS ERECTED IN 1882
MATTHEW SLANEY MASTER.