The difficulties which the city of Cork faces in dealing with flooding is brought home by this map of the city from 1750. Many of today’s streets were waterways, including St Patrick’s Street, Grand Parade and South Mall. Of special interest is the area just south of South Mall, then a fairly open expanse of water, when Morrison’s Island was really an island.
In November 1853, parts of Cork city were damaged by a severe flood. The flood destroyed the first St Patrick's Bridge. In this illustration we see the effects of the flood near the Courthouse in present-day Washington Street. At the time Washington Street was called Great George's Street.
Damage in Fishamble Street Cork, after 1853 floods (from Illustrated London News)
View of Main Street, Mallow, after 1853 floods (from Illustrated London News)
Mallow during the floods of 1853 (Illustrated London News)