Cootehall, a beautiful village nestling at the foot of the old 'Bawn', beside the River Boyle. Close by, Sheebeg and the bigger Sheemor are both reputed to be fairy hills, inhabited by the mystical race of the 'Sidhe' of ancient Ireland. Sheebeg is reputed to be the burial ground of the great Irish mythical hero Fionn MacCumhaill. On the summit is a burial mound, inside two human skeletons were found side by side. The skeletons are definitely male and female with the woman's teeth in perfect condition. Both bodies were buried standing and facing directly east.
John McGahern, the son of a police officer and a teacher, was brought up in Cootehall, went to school in Carrick-on-Shannon and lived near Mohill. He was master at describing provincial life and the effects of people's interests, or indifference, in their neighbors’ lives. One of his books, 'Amongst Women' won him the Booker prize in 1991.