Monday 17 August 2020

Heritage Week events: a selection to whet your appetite

Gosh, it's been a long time since IrishGenealogyNews saw a full week's Events listing. But when National Heritage Week in Ireland, even when so many of its events are virtually formatted, can rustle up 730 heritage projects across the island, I couldn't resist the opportunity to browse them and offer researchers a snapshot of the work so many organisations, groups and individuals have created.
My mini-listing is not intended to be a 'best of' listicle... I haven't even gone through all 730 on offer, so I'm sure I've missed some that I'd find fascinating! It's an in-no-particular-order taste of the cultural heritage projects you might like to explore. The selection probably reflects my own interest to some extent and definitely favours family, social and local history.

I hope it whets your appetite to 'attend' a virtual event, to download or buy a new publication, to support those events presented in socially distanced 'live' time, or to type in your own filters and keywords on the full listing via the image above right.

Unlike my regular events listings please note, this listing is not in date order.

* Podcasts: Stories from a Living Graveyard
, is a 7-episode series by Fin Dwyer of the Irish History podcast and Damian Shiels, of the Forgotten Irish Podcast. The first of the daily episodes is now available at IrishHistoryPodcast.

* Virtual tour: 100 Years of Women in Politics and Public Life, 1918 – 2018 a narrated tour of a pop-up museum. Launched today on the Decade of website.

* Three lectures hosted by the Irish Architectural Archive (IAA) and Buildings of Ireland Trust will be available online at 1:15pm on the day stated below at the IAA website:
  • Tuesday 18th: Buildings of Cork County, with Frank Keohane. 
  • Wednesday 19th: Buildings of Cork City, with Frank Keohane
  • Thursday 20th:Craftsmanship in the architecture of Central Leinster, with Dr Andrew Tierney

* Online exhibition: Glasnevin Museum's Ireland and the Great Flu 1918-19 exhibition, previously on display to personal visitors, is now available to explore online, here.

* Virtual tour: The Cork Jewish Culture Virtual Walk is a video and a webpage exploring some of the history and culture of Cork's Jewish community. It focuses on seven sites, and includes stories, poems, history, songs and music past and present.

* Video tutorials: Researching your Galway family history is a series of videos presented by accredited genealogist Clare Doyle and hosted by Galway Community Heritage. The tutorials focus on the census; church records; the Tithe Applotment Books; The Primary Valuation and graveyard sources; and aim to help family history researchers get the most out of available records and advance their own research. Find out more.

* Video lectures, discussion and film: West Cork History Festival has uploaded free digital content, including talks, discussions and a film. Some relate to the Decade of Centenaries, specifically in the Cork context, but History Ireland has also recorded a special Hedge School on the theme of Ireland, Empire & the Sea. Find out more.

* Video: exploring the Old Rath Church and graveyard situated in the lakelands town of Killeshandra, Co Cavan. Video set to Evocation to a Friend, performed by Canterbury Cathedral's youth choir. Find out more.

* New booklet: Westmeath Field Names Recording Project update has been produced by project coordinator Aengus Finnegan, to provide an update on this multi-community project. The field names are uploaded to Printed copies from Heritage Office. PDF download here.

* Videos: The Craft of Traveller Tinsmithing: Two videos, one from 2017, the other from 1965, document the craft of Traveller tinsmithing, traditionally carried out by Irish Travellers and suited to the nomadic lifestyle. View here.

* New limited edition booklets have been published for 2020 Heritage Week by Steve Dolan. They relate to topics covering Counties Galway, Offaly and Roscommon. All proceeds go to local charities. Booklets can be collected locally or posted at cost. Further details from Steve at These are the titles:
  • All Out: The birth, growth and decline of cricket in County Galway, 1825-1925 €10
  • Cumberland’s Eyrecourt, 1781: The fair and post town of Eyrecourt €5
  • Friends and Forebears: A record of the burials in Kilconieron parish, Co Galway €10
  • Headford 1775: A snapshot of the town of Headford and its people €5
  • Newspaper articles from County Roscommon, 1750-1799 €5
  • Oughterard Survivors: 100 Soldiers from the chief pass into lawless Connemara €5
  • Rural Athenry Parish, 1821: Marking 200 years since the 1821 census €10
  • The Match Report: Newspaper reports and articles on club hurling in Co Galway €10
  • The Workhouses of County Offaly €5
  • United by Impressment? 100 suspected United Irishmen in the 13th regiment of foot €5

* Video: 21 Archival Treasures from Donegal County Archives is an indepth presentation by archivist Niamh Brennan focusing on specific collections & documents acquired or listed over 21 years. It will highlight archives for family and local history and for educators and students of history and related subjects. Find out more.

* Video tutorial: How to Start, Where to Start - First Steps in Tracing your Ancestors. Hosted by the National Archives of Ireland and presented live by accredited genealogist Tony Hennessy, this Culture Club event will be held Thursday 20 August at 2:30pm. Free. Details.

* New information leaflet: Quaker Trail; A journey of discovery. The Waterford Cultural Quarter Quaker Trail will be launched by Mayor of Waterford City and County Council on Thursday 20 August. It's invitation-only event due to social distancing requirements. The printed leaflet will be available in Waterford Gallery of Art, 32/33 O'Connell Street on its reopening, and a digital trail leaflet is available at

* Powerpoint presentation: Your Donegal Family - Resources in Central Library. The Donegal Studies Collection that holds information on all aspects of Donegal’s history, heritage and culture, not least a comprehensive family history collection. Some of the more important resources that will get the family historian started on their quest are highlighted in this presentation. Details.

* Talk: The Great Famine in County Offaly, with Dr. Ciaran Reilly, who will discuss all aspects of the famine, including murder, crime and lawlessness. Hosted by Offaly Libraries on Facebook. 6pm, Tuesday 18 August. Details.

* Online tutorial on Wexford Libraries Digital Local Collection, which presents 19th-century texts, local history journals, photographs and other historical material relating to County Wexford and its people. It aims to make Wexford-related local studies material available for research, study and enjoyment to a wide audience in Wexford, nationally and internationally. Find out more.

* Video lecture: The Anglo-Normans in County Longford. Archaeologist Dr. Kieran O'Conor of NUI Galway explores the lives of the Normans in the frontier county and investigates the motte-and-bailey castles they left behind, especially the impressive 'Moat of Granard'. Find out more.

* A Video Tour of the Old Burial Ground Delgany, with Lailli DeBuitlear, the curator of the burial ground for many years. She delivers a detailed history on all aspects of the burial ground, plus some fascinating insights into local history. Find out more.

* Video tour of the new Offaly Archives, which opened last year in Tullamore, with archivist Lisa Shortall presenting the purpose built site, its holdings and the importance of the history of the county. View here.