The first G.A.A. club was formed in Drumshanbo in 1889 as “St Patricks”. Down the years the club struggled, survived, died and revived. Finally, in 1962, it established a permanent place in the community and has never looked back. Drumshanbo, then called St. Francis, won its first county title in any grade in 1963 – the Junior Championship.
Allen Gaels was formed in 1969 when Drumshanbo and next door neighbours, Ballinaglera, decided to amalgamate and taking their name from Lough Allen, went on to win 3 successive Senior League titles, an U 21 Championship and two senior hurling titles. The combination parted in 1981 when Ballinaglera opted to reform their own club, with Drumshanbo continuing on its own and retaining the name Allen Gaels.
After an initial slump, the climb to success began with a Junior League title in 1986. It progressed through Minor, Junior and Intermediate championship wins in the following three years and culminated in Drumshanbo’s first County Senior Championship in 1991 – to climax a remarkable period of success under Frank McKeon as manager. Since then the club has added four more Senior County championships making them one of the most successful Leitrim teams in recent years.
The club has played its part both on and off the field, in Leitrim’s football successes in the nineties. Noel Moran, Padraig Kenny, and Colin McGlynn played in the Connacht Championship team of 1994 when Tony McGowan was at the helm as County Board Chairman. Indeed Noel Moran received the ultimate accolade when he was named right half back on the Leitrim Team of the Millennium in 2000.
On May 3rd 1999, Allen Gaels re-dedicated their grounds to one of their own – the late Shane McGettigan – who died tragically on August 11th 1998 in Boston. The Shane McGettigan Memorial Park is now one of the finest grounds in the country.
In recent years, the club has cemented it’s place as one of Leitrim’s top clubs winning the County Championships in 1996, 1997 and 2001 and 2002. Allen Gaels has come a long way in a relatively short time and they look to the future with the hope that the best is yet to come.