The Quiet Man’s Ireland-Day 2, or A Day Fit for a “Quiet Man Crazy”


October 18, 2013


Peeking from behind a tree, a Maureen O’Hara pose ala
The Quiet Man, next to the Danaher House

The Quiet Man’s Ireland-Day 2,
 A Day Fit for a “Quiet Man Crazy”

 I have read that “The Quiet Man” fans, the ones who visit Cong to see where the movie was filmed, are called by the locals “Quiet Man Crazies” (or Quiet Man(iacs)).  I would say, that sounds about right, and I unashamedly admit that I am one of them. :o)

October 2013

It was the second day of our Irish holiday, and Paddy, our tour guide from The Inisfree Experience, had arrived at our bed & breakfast to escort us on our half day Quiet Man tour. We soon found that we were in good hands, and in the company of a resident expert in all things Quiet Man. For the Quiet Man movie fan in me, it was a day made to order, and was ever so much fun! (In fact, I would love to go back again someday, and take the whole day tour.) I invite you now, to enjoy a pictorial tour of our wonderful Quiet Man Inisfree Experience.


My only Quiet Man disappointment was finding out that the movie’s romantic abbey rain scene, and the long shot of Inisfree used in the beginning of the movie, were in actuality superimposed creations via Hollywood. Our tour guide, Paddy, informed us that photographs of Ross Abbey (Known as Ross Errilly Friary, shown above), just outside of Cong, were used in this cinematic creation process. The panoramic view of Inisfree, early in the film, used superimposed photos of the nearby village of Clifton in the background.


The long shot of Inisfree, a superimposed Hollywood creation.

A similar technique was used more recently in the 2009 movie,The Proposal, transforming Rockport, Massachusetts into Sitka, Alaska. Read about that in the links below.


The oh-so romantic Quiet Man rain scene at the abbey, used a set created by Hollywood. John Wayne never looked better (in a silk shirt! :o)) with
Maureen O’Hara


Excited to be on The Quiet Man tour, by the Palace Bridge


Palace Bridge, 1951, with Shaun Thornton/John Wayne and
Mary Kate/Maureen O’Hara“ walking her back the whole long way” 

The Castletown station was in reality Ballyglunin station.  No longer in use, and the green train gone, it is hoped that this station may one day be used as a railway station again.


A sign at the station commemorating the significance of this spot in The Quiet Man. Note the writing in Irish underneath the word Ballyglunin. Throughout Ireland words are often written in both English and Irish on road signs.


My photo of  Ballyglunin as it looks today in 2013.


John Wayne at the beginning of the movie The Quiet Man.

White O’Morn Foundation says:Sean Thornton and

 the apple…Frank Nugent’s original screenplay called for an opening scene in the train where Sean Thornton shares a carriage with a mother accompanied by a boy of about five and a little girl of about four. As they stare at the American stranger opposite in unembarrassed curiosity, they offer him an apple, which he gratefully accepts. This is why he gets an apple out of his pocket, waves it, and says “thanks” as he leaves the train.



The iconic Quiet Man Bridge in the serene Irish countryside, 2013


Shaun Thornton/John Wayne first sees White O’Morn while on
The Quiet Man Bridge in the movie The Quiet Man


Stone fenced fields and abandoned lead mine, 2013.


Mary Kate/Maureen O’Hara, nylons in hand, waits for Shaun Thornton/John Wayne to follow in The Quiet Man, with fields and lead mine and in the background.



 Dale and I cross the bridge over the stream to White O’Morn,
Shaun Thornton/John Wayne’s house


 Barry Fitzgerald/ Michaleen Oge Flynn bids Shaun Thornton/ John Wayne good-night on the bridge to White O’ Morn,

“Well it’s a nice, soft night, so I think I’ll go and join me comrades, and talk a little treason. G’night Sean”.

IMG_0354At the “Holy Grail” of all things Quiet Man, Dale and I standing next to, sadly, all that remains of White O’Morn, Shaun Thornton/John Wayne’s house.


White O’Morn as it appeared in the movie The Quiet Man in 1951, complete with Irish green door and John Wayne (left-hand side).
(Clicking on the photos will enlarge them.)


 Dale and me in the White O’Morn stream
(Thanks for the use of the Wellies/boots, Paddy!)


 Shaun Thornton/John Wayne and Will Danaher/Victor McLaglin wade through the stream to White O’Morn at the end of The Quiet Man.

Note the stones in this scene and in my photo above.


 Dale and me playing “patty-fingers in the holy water”.

 Two churches were used in the making of The Quiet Man, but are combined to portray one, Inisfree’s Catholic Church. The church pictured above is the protestant Church of Ireland in Cong, and was used for the outside shots. The holy water font/basin used in the patty-fingers scene was borrowed from the St. Mary’s Catholic Church of Cong for this shot. St. Mary’s, in Cong, was also used, but for the inside shots, featuring its stunning stained glass windows, designed by Irish artist
Harry Clarke. St. Mary’s interior was rather dark, and John Ford was required to slow down the shutter speed to get his shot.  Thus the stuttered, jerky steps that John Wayne appears to be taking in the movie, while walking down the aisle to exit the church service. The original St. Mary’s Catholic Church is gone, but the beautiful stained glass windows are on display in the newer St. Mary’s Catholic Church. (Sadly, we missed seeing these windows while in Cong.)


Shaun Thornton/John Wayne offers a scoop of holy water to startled
Mary Kate Danaher/ Maureen O’Hara.


Dale and I role-playing in Cohan’s. 


John Wayne and friends at Cohan’s in The Quiet Man.
This shot was taken on a set in Hollywood. 

In 1951, Cohan’s was actually a grocery store whose outside was made to look like a bar for the movie. Today it now actually is a quaint little bar, as it was in The Quiet Man.  I love tea, and had the most wonderful cup of tea here.
The kind Cohan’s owner educated me about Ireland’s tea. I am now am an ardent fan of the deliciously, unpretentious, Barry’s Irish tea!

My new favorite tea-Ireland’s Barry’s Tea, Gold Blend.
I am a tea purist, and love the clean taste.
No added flavors, no frills, just tea!
I discovered that Amazon carries this, so when I run out…


 Me with our fantastic tour guide, Paddy, in front of the Market Cross on
Main Street in Cong-the Inisfree of The Quiet Man.

 This photo was taken at the conclusion of our tour, which had been filled with numerous visits to Quiet Man sites throughout the spectacular Irish countryside,
fun movie trivia tidbits, a whole lot of picture taking, and two enjoyable tea stops, the first resulting in the eating of my first scone (Yum!), and the second, discovering the joy of Barry’s Irish Tea.


The Market Cross in a scene from The Quiet Man.


Unfortunately, we missed the October 6, 2013 unveiling of this
Quiet Man statue (in Cong at the Cong Festival) by two weeks.

Our tour guide, Paddy, was on the committee for this event.
This photo courtesy of the Cong Festival Facebook site.


The Mystery of “The Whisper”

I could not possibly end my photo discussion about the classic movie The Quiet Man without a quick mention of…


At the very end of the film, Maureen O’Hara whispers into John Wayne’s ear. John Wayne’s reaction is swift and real. John Ford insisted that Miss O’Hara whisper this unrehearsed, and in her own word “rude”, comment into Wayne’s ear.  At first, she refused, but finally agreed under the condition that no one was to ever know what she had uttered.  After the scene’s one take, Wayne was told of Ford’s directorial “trick”, and Ford, Wayne, and O’Hara made a pact to never reveal what was said.
A blog post from VIA MARGUTTA 51 has put a clip with this whisper in slow motion, if you would like to put your lip reading skills to the test, and compare your answer with that of other readers of that blog.

Via Margutta 51

Thank you for indulging me by joining me on my Quiet Man adventure! Please, do not miss the information below, including:  an actual John Wayne recipe, additional web links, as well as the “fun facts for ya” section, filled with Quiet Man facts that I (having learned over the years through my reading, watching documentaries, and from our recent Quiet Man tours) wanted to share, but just could not figure out how to fit them elsewhere in this blog! :o)

Read my previous post The Quiet Man’s Ireland, Part 1. Click here.

To Read My Other Posts on Ireland …

Irish Gold, Part 1, click here.
Irish Gold, Part 2, click here.
Top of the Mornin’ to Ya, click here.

 Thanks for reading!!!  :o)


I attempt to post my blog weekly on, or around, each Monday.

To join my blog “following”, and receive “I’m Annette” via email, (Inis free I couldn’t resist this. :o)), immediately upon posting, please sign up on the right-hand side of this page.

Fun Fact(s) for ya

  • The Quiet Man was nominated for several 1952 Academy Awards, and won for best color cinematography and best director- John Ford.
  • Some refer to The Quiet Man as an Irish Western.

Maureen O’Hara

Maureen O’Hara discusses The Quiet Man in her autobiography Tis Herself

  • Maureen O’Hara broke her wrist in the scene where she first speaks to, kisses, and then takes a swing at John Wayne in White O’Morn. Her hand accidently connected with Wayne’s hand.
  • John Wayne was being readied to film the scene where Shaun Thornton stomps off, after being left behind in town by his angry new wife Mary Kate. Nearby Maureen O’Hara, upon seeing a group of seagulls, suggested to John Ford, having  John Wayne walk through the group of birds for an impressive shot. The birds stayed long enough to film the memorable scene.
  • According to O’Hara, toward the end of the movie, in the somewhat controversial scene where Shaun Thornton/John Wayne literally drags
    Mary Kate Danaher/Maureen O’Hara “the whole long way” to confront her brother, Squire Danaher, the actress was purposely dragged through sheep dung that had been left, as well as, placed on the path, by her director and co-star.  This foul-smelling practical joke was thanks to John Ford and John Wayne.

John Wayne

  • Wayne once said of his Quiet Man role, “For nine weeks I was just playing straight man to those wonderful characters, and that’s really hard.”
  • John Wayne was born in Winterset, Iowa where there is now a John Wayne Birthplace Museum. (I just had to slip this fact in here, having grown up in Iowa, and having visited the museum!  :o))
  • See my visit to the museum in 2015, here.

John Ford and his Quiet Man

  • John Ford read and liked Maurice Walsh’s short story that ran in the 1933 Saturday Evening Post.
  • In 1936 John Ford bought the film rights for $10.
  • It took 15 years for John Ford to get studio heads to back The Quiet Man and agree to allow him to film part of it on location in Ireland. He was finally given the go ahead, with the stipulation that a western be made first.  After making Rio Grande, The Quiet Man production began.
  • Both John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara had promised Ford, several years prior to making the film, that they would star in The Quiet Man, and eventually took a cut in pay to do so.
  • Studio head, Herbert Yates, upon first seeing it, proclaimed The Quiet Man was too green (literally, too much of the color green) and too long.
  •  He also initially disliked the title.
  • Fortunately, John Ford succeeded in keeping the film intact.

It has been said:

  • There is the color green in each scene of The Quiet Man.
  • This was the first movie filmed about Ireland in Technicolor.
  • This film jump-started tourism in Ireland.
  • The Quiet Man has been called by some John Ford’s love letter to Ireland.
  • John Ford was of Irish heritage.

 Did you hear that, everybody? The Marquis of Queensbury rules!

Our tour guide, Paddy, told us that the locals who were used as extras in the fight scene of The Quiet Man were instructed by John Ford to “not hold back”, giving permission for neighbors bearing grudges and ill feeling toward other neighbors to give it their all when the director said “Action!”. Apparently, more than one extra left that day with a black eye!  :o)

 Modern Conveniences

In 1951, prior to the movie company’s arrival, the town of Cong had no electricity, and horses were the main form of transportation.

(Ashford Castle, temporary home to the cast and crew, had electricity from their own generator, at this time.)

Family ties

  • Maureen O’Hara’s (Mary Kate Danaher) two younger brothers were in The Quiet Man with her. Charles B. FitzSimons played the IRA member and lawyer Hugh Forbes, and  James O’Hara played young priest, Father Paul.
  • Another pair of brothers were also in The Quiet Man. Barry Fitzgerald,
    played the leprechaun-like Michaleen Oge Flynn, while his younger brother,Arthur Shields (Shields being the family name.), played the Protestant Reverend Cyril Playfair .
  • John Wayne’s four children star in the race scene.
  • John Ford, the director and the driving force behind The Quiet Man, had his older brother, the former silent film star and director, Francis Ford, play the part of dying man Dan Tobin in the movie. Although working on the film together, the siblings rarely spoke to one another while in Ireland, and had a strained relationship.
  • Ken Curtis (later Festus of Gunsmoke fame), John Ford’s then-new son-in-law, starred as accordion player Dermot Fahy.
  • Patrick Ford, John Ford’s son, served as temporary stunt double for Victor McLaglen when John Wayne punches Danaher backwards into the river during the fight scene. The actors themselves did all other stunts in The Quiet Man.
  •  Victor McLauglen’s son, Andrew, who now is a successful director, served as second assistant director on the film.

 Appearing as brother and sister, Andrew McLaughlin was actually more than 30 years older than Maureen O’Hara when The Quiet Man was made.  Maureen O’Hara was 31 and Victor McLaglen was 64, making him closer to a father’s age, than a brother’s.


The Quiet Man was censored in Ohio and in Boston. Michaleen Olg Flynn’s line on seeing the broken post-wedding night bed, “Impetuous! Homeric!” was cut.

In fact, one web site claims that a whole line is still missing from this movie’s scene. states:

Victim of censorship: In the scene when Michaeleen Olg Flynn goes into the cottage bedroom and stares at the broken bed, he says “Impetuous. Homeric!” Then, if you are paying attention, you will see, immediately after he says “Homeric!” the film will jump. This is because a line was cut out-but some years AFTER the film’s original release. Evidently, someone with clout complained when they heard him say, “Impetuous. Homeric. The power of the man!”


Michaleen Oge Flynn-“Over here we pronounce it…”

A charming difference that we noticed in Ireland, was how we differ in the pronunciation of the word film.

Where we, Americans say it “film”, the Irish, at least around Cong, pronounce it

Mary Kate:  Fine farmer you are!
Not a turnip or a cabbage or a potato on the place…

When in Ireland, we learned that potatoes are served often at meals. We found tasty boiled potatoes on our restaurant table several times. One meal, at the upscale restaurant in Cong, The Pyramid, we were served both steak french fries AND boiled potatoes at our meal. 😮


 Enjoying my delicious Irish salmon and potatoes, in the form of steak fries and boiled, at The Pyramid



Serves six

2 (4-oz) cans diced mild green chilies

1 lb. Monterey Jack cheese, grated

1 lb. cheddar cheese, grated

4 egg whites

4 egg yolks

2/3 can evaporated milk

1 Tbsp. flour

1/8 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. pepper

2 medium tomatoes, sliced

Combine chilies with cheese in a large bowl

and turn into a well-buttered shallow 2-quart casserole dish.

Beat the egg whites until peaks form.

Mix egg yolks, milk, flour, salt and pepper, in a small bowl.

Fold the egg yolk mixture into the egg whites.

Pour over the cheese and chili mixture.

Comb through, with a knife and fork gently until combined.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Arrange tomatoes on top and bake for another 30 minutes.

Garnish with extra chilies, if desired.

Let sit for 15 minutes before serving.

The Dead Celebrity Cookbook:

A Resurrection of Recipes from More Than 145 Stars of Stage and Screen,

by Frank Decaro (HCI Books, October 2011)


Additional Quiet Man Information


Paddy’s Quiet Man Tour

White O’Morn Foundation
Advocating for the restoration of ‘White O’Morn’– the iconic Irish thatched cottage and centerpiece of John Ford’s classic movie ‘The Quiet Man’.

“The Cottage” is just outside the village of Maam as you head west to Maam Cross. 

John Ford:  Dreaming
The Quiet Man
An informative 2012 documentary directed by Se Merry Doyle.
Maureen O’Hara, Martin Scorsese, and Peter Bogdanovich are interviewed in the film.


The making of ‘John Ford – Dreaming the Quiet Man’

YouTube Videos

The Making of Quiet Man, 27 minutes documentary
with movie historian and critic Leonard Maltin,
This is also a bonus on the blu ray version of The Quiet Man.

Uploaded in 2010, this 5-minute Hal McClure documentary,
Quiet Man Country, is about The Quiet Man locations used in Ireland

A 27-minutes 1991 Irish Documentary, Inisfree this Way, shows Irish locations used in The Quiet Man, and speaks with locals who were there in 1951.

A snippet of the documentary Joy of Ireland with Maureen O’Hara.
The whole documentary is worth watching, 
if you can find it.


Articles written on Cong and The Quiet Man

A March 1991 article,
Remembering Ireland:
The Quiet Man Sites Remain Recognizable – 40 Years After Filming

A September 1999 article  

Where was the movie The Quiet Man filmed?  September 14, 2017 

The Quiet Man, starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara, transforms Irish village of Cong into tourist drawing card

The Quiet Man:  Embassy in US Feared a False View of Ireland

Tiny Irish Village becomes shrine of `The Quiet Man’

John Wayne’s Love of Ireland and Quiet Man

Facts about Cong, Co Mayo – the home of “The Quiet Man”
March 2020

The Quiet Man Web Sites and Information

A Larry King interview with Maureen O’Hara

A great map and additional interesting Quiet Man post

The Complete Tour Guide to The Quiet Man Locations: 42 Locations in and around Cong, Mayo and Connemara
By Lisa Collins

Another helpful map/pamphlet

Discussion of Irish Quiet Man movie sets and trivia

A nice photo of the stained glass window in St. Mary’s Catholic Church

Quiet Man articles written by fans

Please, be aware that not all statements of facts here are accurate. 

The Quiet Man-Lines from the movie

My other Ireland Posts

Irish Gold 1

Irish Gold 2

The Quiet Man’s Ireland, Day 1

The Quiet Man’s Ireland-Day 2, or A Day Fit for a “Quiet Man Crazy”

Top of the Mornin’ to Ya!



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23 Responses to The Quiet Man’s Ireland-Day 2, or A Day Fit for a “Quiet Man Crazy”

  1. Paddy Rock says:

    Very well put together Thank you for your kind words It was a pleasure having you on along


    Liked by 1 person

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  12. Bernie felton says:

    Hi Annette could you send me paddy’s details I can’t get hold of him .I wanted to book a tour .thank you .


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