Many people had left the island to travel the five continents and returned to teach the children .. our children were very intelligent, and the people were comfortable by country standards.
...on an island that small, there were four churches and a monastery. Most of the gravestones dating back hundreds of years have the same names as the people there now. When people walked to the graveyard they always took the long way around, so that you could take as long as possible. The wake the night before would take all night, starting with a single unmarked grave -- you started at that stone and walked to the low tide mark barefooted, and circled around to the stone again, and you did this ten times.
This island was the home of St. Senan, born in Kilaimer in 488, and his sister is also a saint- Saint Imy. His feast day is the 8 of March, the same as John of God. Once this church was the seat of the diocese, one that covered part of several counties.
After Senan there would have been a bishop on the island for about six centuries, until the 1000s, and for many hundreds of years no women were allowed on the island -- only once was one washed ashore, and she died soon after. When Elisabethan soldiers came there, though, they took the monks and murdered them all, drowned them at sea. The families that lived here in my childhood only lived here about four hundred years."
-- Memories of a woman who grew up on Inis Catheigh, or Scattery Island, in the RTE documentary "Scattery of Senan," from 1978. The island has been abandoned, the last of the families gone, for 44 years.