Sam Maguire was born in the townland of Mallabracka 6.5 kilometres north of Dunmanway on March 11th, 1877. There is some disagreement to the meaning of the name, but it is said to generally translate to “the speckled hillocks”. A Tricolour is flying at the gate of the homestead. The family farmed 200 acres (81 hectares) as tenants of Robert Ellis, part of the Shouldham estate, with only about 50 to 60 acres being good farm land.
His family lived here since the early 1800’s. His parents were John and Jane Maguire. He was one of seven children,William or Willie was the eldest then Mary, John (Jack), Richard (Dick), Paul, Sam and Elizabeth. The family was Church of Ireland. In 1871, members of The Church of Ireland represented about 12% of the population of Dunmanway. As was common practice at the time the eldest son, Willie, inherited the farm but he did not marry. He served as a vestry man in the Church of Ireland in Dunmanway. The select vestry is the committee elected by the members of the parish to run the affairs of the parish.
Mary (also known as Moll or Molly) and Elizabeth also stayed at home. They both remained single. Sam, his brothers Jack and Dick went to work in the Post Office in London. Paul married a Catholic and because of possible local disapproval of the mixed marriage they decided to emigrate to the U.S.A. Mary was the last to leave in 1959. On February 6th, 1927, Sam passed away from tuberculosis in Mallabracka, as had his two younger brothers, and was buried with his family in St Mary's Church in Dunmanway.