To outsiders, the village of Ballinalee, in County Longford, might seem like no great shakes, just a bump in the road, a blink-and-you-miss-it spot that you’re through before you even notice. Were they to consult a map of the county, the seemingly inconsequential dot called Ballinalee might be ignored in favour…Continue
There are two routes I can take to my office when I leave the train station to go to work. They both pass a large 18th century building of Palladian, neoclassical design, which I used to admire as a child, long before I knew of its connection to my own family.
Now, as I pass it by, I…Continue
Do you know where you’ll be on April 24? Maybe not, but chances are you might just find yourself huddled over a form, answering innumerable questions about your personal life. Filling in the census may not be the most exciting of pastimes, but it sure is important. Without all those statistics it generates,…Continue
The GPO, Mount Street Bridge, The South Dublin Union -- these are names that resonate when it comes to Easter 1916 as the battlegrounds for what became Padraig Pearse’s ‘glorious failure.’ However, for some quirk of history, the success that took place in the sleepy town of Ashbourne, County Meath, during the Rising has…Continue
To have a relative who was ‘out’ in 1916 – that is, someone who took part in that mad assault on the British Empire known as the Easter Rising – is something to be treasured.
Of course, there were plenty of other…Continue
When the actor Arthur Shields strode towards the Abbey Theatre on Easter Monday, 1916, it was with one intent -- not to rehearse or act in a play, but to collect his rifle and take part in the greater drama that was about to shake the streets of Dublin.
Pictured, Arthur Shields