Camphire House is situated at the confluence of the rivers bride & blackwater in the west of Co. Waterford. It is believed that there has been some sort of fortification in the area since earliest times. Remains of a very early settlement have been found just north of Camphire. The current house dates to 1843, on the riverside there are the ruins of a Norman castle and previous 8th century fortifications against the Vikings. The Camphire estate was purchased by the Dobbs family in 1902, Sir Henry Dobbs spent his career in India & was high commissioner to the kingdom of Iraq in 1923, after he died in 1934 his wife and daughter Susan lived at Camphire.
But where did it get its name? One historical account states that, when Cromwell came to Ireland he travelled throughout the country for a year and ten months and during his campaign he came as far as Dungarvan and on his way to Youghal passed through Camphire.
It being then late he decided to camp there in a field beside the river Blackwater.
He lit a huge "camp fire" and from that fire Camphire got its name.
When he woke in the morning he looked across the Bride and saw the grey dawn stealing silently over the country. Seeing this he explained "The Breaking Dawn" and the district across the Bride thence got its name "Bridane!"
The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0640, Page 70, National Folklore Collection, UCD
Camphire is derived from an old Gaelic word ‘caimthir’ which means ‘land on the bend’.