Maynooth Studies in Local History Series – Book Launch

The five latest books in the acclaimed Maynooth Studies in Local History series will be launched at 7.00 p.m. on Wednesday 11 September 2019 in Renehan Hall, South Campus, Maynooth University, Co. Kildare.

All welcome to attend!

The book titles and details as follows:

The Kirwan murder case, 1852
A glimpse of the Irish Protestant middle class in the mid-nineteenth century

Suzanne Leeson

This book relates the story of the controversial trial, conviction and imprisonment of William Burke Kirwan, a Dublin artist, for the murder of his wife, Sarah, in 1852. His trial and the extensive and divisive social commentary it provoked provide a representation of the strata of society to which he belonged, the Protestant middle class of the mid-nineteenth century, allowing an examination of many of the attitudes and values that they subscribed to.

Suzanne Leeson lives with her family in Baldoyle in Dublin. Due to a keen interest in history she returned to Dublin City University as a mature student, gaining an undergraduate degree in history and psychology. This is her first book.

Paperback. 64 pages. Illustrations. €9.95
Available Now

Waterford port and harbour, 1815–42
Shaping the port

Mary Breen

The management and development of Waterford port and harbour during a formative period in Irish history are explored in this book. Particular attention is paid to the relationships and interactions between Waterford Corporation, the body granted control of the port and harbour under successive royal charters; Waterford Chamber of Commerce, the chartered body representing merchants and traders; and Waterford Harbour Commissioners, the new statutory port authority established in 1816.

Mary Breen is a retired public servant from Waterford city. She holds an MA in Irish History from NUI Maynooth.

Paperback. 64 pages. Illustrations. €9.95
Available Now

Rathcoole and the United Irish Rebellions, 1798–1803
Kerron Ó Luain

The story of the United Irish rebellions in a hitherto quiet corner of south-west County Dublin is a story of personal resentments fuelled by the spread of radical republican ideology, followed by a violent attempt at altering the social and political status quo. This book focuses on Rathcoole society between the years 1798 and 1803 and argues that, rather than agrarian or sectarian tensions, it was primarily United Irish politicization and organization that led to the outbreak of rebellion in the locality.

Kerron Ó Luain is an historian and activist from Rathcoole, County Dublin. He recently held a Fulbright Scholarship in Villanova University, Philadelphia, and has published on various aspects of popular collective action in Ireland during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Paperback. 64 pages. Illustrations. €9.95
Available Now

Landholding in the new English settlement of Hacketstown, Co. Carlow, 1635–1875
Oliver Whelan

The new Protestant settlement in the lordship of Clonmore, centred around Hacketstown, proved resilient to the 1641 rebellion and attracted investment, including by Dublin bureaucrats and landed and military figures. Entrepreneurial Catholics turned to trade in response to the penal laws. Unusually, in the period 1852–74 most leaseholders, including Catholics, achieved security of tenure, subject to fixed rents. In 1874–5, Henry Parnell (brother of Charles Stewart), owner of the lordship, had the Landed Estates Court auction its heavily encumbered 13,000 acres which were purchased, piecemeal, mainly by large-scale local landowners, sitting tenants and Dublin-based professionals.

Oliver Whelan, a retired Director of the National Treasury Management Agency, was awarded an MA in Irish history by Maynooth University in 2016. He is currently studying for a PhD at Maynooth University, researching the struggle between landlords and tenants for the ownership of land in late 19th- and early 20th-century Carlow.

Paperback. 64 pages. Illustrations. €9.95
Available Now

John Ferrall
Master of Sligo Workhouse, 1852–66

Fergus O’ Ferrall

This case study provides the first account to focus on the career and work of a master of an Irish workhouse. It explores the role of a master in respect of issues such as management, governance and the provision for the poor in post-Famine Ireland during the fourteen-year period when John Ferrall served as Master of Sligo Workhouse. It illuminates how the poor-law system evolved in terms of medical and other services in the 1850s and 1860s despite the limitations laid down for the system in law and the ineffective governance provided by the annually elected Sligo Poor Law Boards of Guardians and the detailed regulations of the remote Poor Law Commissioners in Dublin.

Fergus O’Ferrall is an author and historian. He has written Catholic Emancipation: Daniel O’Connell and the Birth of Irish Democracy (Dublin, 1985) and a number of works on local history including co-editing with Martin Morris, Longford: History and Society (Dublin, 2010).

Paperback. 64 pages. Illustrations. €9.95
Available Now