The Gateway and tower are all that remain of Macroom Castle, which was granted to Admiral William Penn, (father of the founder of Pennsylvania U.S.A.) by Oliver Cromwell.
Macroom Castle, the boyhood home of William Penn, stands on the western margin of the town of Macroom and its windows look away into the distance, where a rugged land lies at the foot of the mountains. The present Macroom Castle is said to have been constructed in the reign of King John, 1199-1209, and possibly occupied by the Carew family. It is thought that the castle was built on the site of an earlier stronghold. Its story reflects the trials and tribulations of Irish society over the centuries, passing from the hands of the Carews to the McCarthy and so beginning a trail of ownership that would stretch through the ages.
When Macroom Castle was burnt (for the fourth time) during the War of Independence, 1916-22, Lady Ardilaun gave the remains to the Irish people.
The structure dominated the skyline of Macroom until the 1960s when, in a dangerous condition, it had to be demolished. However, some parts of the castle are still to be seen in the grounds of the castle demesne, which is a public park, with beautiful riverway walks, situated in the heart of the town. The castle walls with old stone, arches and guns providing an elegant centre for the town but were built in a much later, romantic era.