Tallaght Historical Society Talks 2016/17

Tallaght Historical Society’s Lectures for the 2016/17 season have commenced. All lectures take place at 7:00 p.m. in the County Library, Tallaght, and all are welcome. No booking required.

2016

October 11th – Life after the Twelve Locks by Mick KinehanTaylors Map of Tallaght 1816 showing the many mills in the area

November 8th – Dublin from Old Photographs by Cormac Lowth

November 22nd – The Shape we’re in: the history of the map of Ireland by Michael Keyes

December 13th – Leo Swan Memorial Lecture – Archaeologist Neil Jackman will give a talk on his recent findings at the Hell Fire Club.

Round Tower_small

2017

January 10th – History of the Garda Siochána by Gerry Lovett

February 14th – A History of the GAA by David Griffith

March 14th – Edward Trevor, beast of Kilmainham by Michael Ó Doibhilín

April 11th – If those Trees Could Speak: the Massys of Killakee by Frank Tracy

May 9th – History of Ireland’s Round Towers by John Dolan

May 23rd – The Collection of the Irish Air Corps Museum by Michael Whelan

June 13th – Dublin Housing in the 1800s by Seán Bagnall

Using Online Resources for Irish History Research

Lucan Library will host a three part practical course given by Mary Jackson, a Lucan-based genealogist, on using online and original sources for Irish local and family history projects. It will run from 6.30 pm to 8.00 pm on Monday evenings and there are 10-15 places available.

A knowledge of computers and using the internet is essential.

Ordnance Survey Map of Lucan 1870

Over the three sessions, participants will work on a project of their choice – topics of interest to Lucan can be suggested if none springs to mind! Projects can include oral history or records based research.
The first session (29 June 2015) will focus on getting the most from popular online resources and on identifying the public archives and institutions where original records relevant to the chosen topics might be located.
At the second session (13 July 2015), participants will report back to the group on their research to date and they will be given an opportunity to discuss how they propose to advance their project.
At the third and final session (14 September 2015) participants will present a short paper (four minutes to deliver it) on their chosen topic or some key aspect of it. Afterwards, a folder containing copies of the papers will be lodged, for reference, with the Local History Section of Lucan Library.

If you are interested please contact Lucan library on 01-6216422, email lucan@sdublincoco.ie or call in.

History and Heritage 2015 Events

Whilst we are all looking forward to National Heritage Week which runs between 22nd and 30th of August, sometimes, you have to admit, a week is not enough, especially when it relates to something you have a particular interest in. That is why the Library Section of South Dublin County Council have devised a programme of walks, talks, tours and workshops around history and heritage that lasts the whole summer long. I know it is a cliché at this stage, but there really is something for every one, from outdoor events to craft classes and history lectures.

History and Heritage 2015 events brochure

The programme kicks off with the ever popular heritage walks of the villages within South Dublin County. Whether you’re a local, once lived in the area or are just interested in the heritage and history of Newcastle, Palmerstown, Saggart, Templeogue, Tallaght, Clondalkin, Lucan or Rathfarnham, you can get out and about and start exploring and learning on these guided walks. Another of the heritage walk highlights is Massy’s Woods and Hell Fire Club Heritage Walk on Saturday 25th July and Wednesday 26th August, led by Historian Frank Tracy. I’m sure Frank will explore some of the scary stories one hears about the ominously named Hell Fire Club. Besides, the views over Dublin City from the top of Mount Pelier are magnificent. There’s nothing like a bracing walk followed by bracing views!

Talking of things of yore, have you every wanted to know how to restore and preserve old family photographs? As part of a ground breaking initiative developed by the Gallery of Photography, the County Library in Tallaght are hosting events around the Photo Album of Ireland project during the month of July. Staff of the Gallery will host a talk on restoring your family album on Saturday 18th July, followed by a scanning workshop where you can contribute to this amazing project by bringing along photos from your own family album.

Did you know there used to be an airport in Tallaght? Well, during August and September the County Library in Tallaght will host a photographic exhibition exploring the history of Tallaght Aerodrome.

And whilst the big kids amongst us may have our heads in the clouds, we mustn’t forget the young ones in the family.Irish History Live workshops where children from aged 8 to 12 can experience life in Dublin during the 1916 Rising take place in Ballyroan, Castletymon and Tallaght Libraries. And if that is not enough, Lucan Library are inviting children to place their Hands On History to explore the story of the Irish at Gallipoli through an interactive history workshop.  Children aged 6 – 10 year old  can create scenes from history using Lego and use webcams to transform them in their own comic in County Library, or for the sporty kid, why not design and make your own sliotar inspired textile balls at the Stitched Sliotar workshops on 17th July. Booking for these events opens on 30th June.

This is just a flavour of the over 50 events taking place throughout the summer. For the full programme click here or pick up a copy in your local South Dublin Libraries branch, as well as other locations around the city.

For further information and bookings, contact  Sίle Coleman at 01 462 0073 or e-mail localstudies@sdublincoco.ie.

Prepare for your Leaving Cert. History Project


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Discover how to maximise your marks for your History Project in this workshop with experienced history teacher Stephen Tonge (author of Junior and Leaving Certificate history books and web administrator for HIST website). Our Local Studies team will suggest possible topics for your project and introduce you to the vast array of resources available for use in your project. Suitable for 5th and 6th year students.

Wednesday 9th October at 6:30pm at the County Library, Tallaght. To book, please phone 01 4620073 or email talib@sdublincoco.ie

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Suggested local history topics with source lists are also available in SOURCE.

Pearse and St. Enda’s

The Flight of the Bremen

Robert Emmet on the Run in the Tallaght Hills

Old Bawn House and the 1641 Rebellion

William Howard Russell

The Battle of Tallaght 

Trams in South Dublin County

Milling in South Dublin County

History Events in South Dublin Libraries in May 2013

There are lots of history lectures and events coming up in South Dublin Libraries during the month of May. As usual all events are free and all are welcome! The only event that requires booking is the Selina Guinness reading at Whitechurch Library, which you can book by calling 01 4930199.

Ballyroan Library
Thursday 23rd May, 7:30 pm
Dublin in the Early 20th Century
Exploring the 1911 Census with Caitriona Crowe, Head of Special Projects at the National Archives of Ireland

County Library Tallaght

Tuesday 14th May, 7:00 pm
Tallaght Historical Society Lecture – The Irish at Gallipoli, 1915, a talk by Michael Whelan

Tuesday 21st May, 7:00 pm
Electing the Popes, how and why the process came about with Miriam Moffit, Department of History, NUI Maynooth

Tuesday 28th May, 7:00 pm
The Building of the Dublin Suburbs: an exploration of houses and furniture using newspaper advertisements.
with Dr. Miriam Moffit, Department of History, NUI Maynooth

Whitechurch Library
Thursday 23rd May, 2:00 pm
A Crocodile by the Door: Selina Guinness of Tibradden reads from her award winning memoir. Booking essential.

Red Line Book Festival Local History Events

Red Line Book Festival logo

As part of the Red Line Book Festival, South Dublin Libraries is delighted to present the following talks: 

The Speaker at the Speaker

Wednesday 14th November, 7pm at the Speaker Conolly Pub, Firhouse Road, Dublin 24. Admission Free – all welcome.

Connecting the local with the historical past Dr Michael Keyes will give a talk on the life and times of William (Speaker) Conolly in the pub that bears his name. A rags to riches story of a man who moved from humble beginnings to become one of the wealthiest and most powerful men in Ireland.

The Shadow of James Joyce: Chapelizod and Environs, a talk by Motoko Fujita

Wednesday 14th November, 7.30pm at Stewarts Library Palmerstown. Admission free but booking essential (phone 01-6518129).

Motoko’s book The Shadow of James Joyce: Chapelizod and Environs contains 55 images with original essays by Joyceans, local scholars and historians, which enliven these original photographs. Whilst at Baiko Gakuin University (MA) Japan, Motoko studied the Irish author James Joyce. Upon moving to Ireland she was attracted to the quaint, old-world, picturesque look of Chapelizod and quickly began to capture images of the village; these and others have led directly to her work The Shadow of James Joyce.

The Book of Kells and other Treasures: a talk by Anne Marie Diffley, TCD.

Thursday 15th November at 10:30 am in Castletymon Library Admission Free – Booking essential (phone 01 4524888).

An interesting and informative talk by one of the most informed staff of Trinity College Library exploring the famous 9th Century gospel manuscript and other treasures held in this magnificent library. 

Remarkable Trees of South Dublin County

South County Dublin has a wonderful heritage of ancient trees preserved in literature and folklore and indeed some remarkable trees still grow here. Trees associated with kingship, mythical trees, a hanging tree, saint’s trees and venerable old trees have all been recorded here.

 Roman writers observed that early Celtic societies worshiped in sacred groves or tree sanctuaries and when Christianity came to Ireland many trees associated with pagan worship were incorporated into the new Christian sites. The term bile was used for a sacred tree and survives in the word bileog (leaf) and sometimes the term craebh was used which survives as craobh (branch). An early legal poem of the seventh century reveals that there would be a severe penalty for interfering with a tree sanctuary

A danger from which there is no escape

Is the penalty for felling the noble sacred trees.

One of the earliest references to a special tree is in the Dindshenchas when St Mochua (or Cronán) of Clondalkin is mentioned in a lament for the bile Tortan.

I Mochua with Crónán do plead

Please do not grieve excessively

From the bare stump so grey in hue

Many a tree may spring anew

St Maelruan's Tree

St Maelruan’s Tree

Tallaght

This idea of a sacred tree renewing itself can be found in Tallaght at St Maelruan’s tree. This magnificent walnut tree, associated with the local saint, was struck by lightning in 1795 and split into several parts which rooted and the tree still bears walnuts to this day. Although this tree is hundreds of years old, walnut trees are not native to Ireland and so the present tree is thought to have replaced an earlier tree dedicated to this “Bright Sun of Ireland”.

Mount Seskin

There is a fleeting reference in the kingship rite of the O’Rourke clan of Breifne to their slat righe or rod of kingship, this was passed to the king as an important part of his inauguration rite. The branch for the O’Rourke’s inauguration had to be cut from the bile St Maedoc at the saint’s sanctuary at Seiscinn Uairbeoil or MountSeskin.

Glenasmole

St Anne’s ash tree and holy well in Glenasmole is typical of a saint’s tree and it incorporates a stone lined well at its base. Although the church is associated with St Sanctan the name is corrupted to St Anne – often an avatar of the old celtic goddess Anu.

Ancient Yew in Palmerstown

Ancient Yew in Palmerstown

Palmerstown

Palmerstown can claim to have had one of the oldest tress in Ireland, an ancient yew. According to the antiquaries of the 19th century there was a yew said to be almost a thousand years old in the churchyard. It was illustrated by Wakeman. Yews are thought to live for a very long time but are difficult to date. Churches were often decorated with branches of yew on Palm Sunday. This tree became unsound and was blown down in a storm in the 1880s.

Newcastle

The Old Glebe at Newcastle also has an ancient yew tree known as the Dean’s Tree. It was named for Jonathan Swift 1667-1745, the great writer, who is said to have sat under this tree in the garden writing and conversing with friends. This tree is several hundred years old and has a massive girth of over five metres.

 

St. Maelruan's Tree

St. Maelruan’s Tree

Did you know?

The folklore of South Dublin also has references to special trees. The school’s collection for Clondalkin has a story about a tree that stood in the grounds of Orchard House. A new owner to the house was about to cut down the tree but when told of the local tradition that the tree dated from 1014, the date of the Battle of Clontarf, the tree was saved.

Balgaddy Bush

Balgaddy Bush

There is also a reference to the Balgaddy Bush in the folklore record. It lay on the boundary between the parishes of Clondalkin and Lucan, at a crossroads, a location redolent of folklore. The story was that a priest was turned away from the Bush House on a rainy night whereupon he said the name of those who turned him away would never again live in the house and that the grass would grow around the door of the house.

 

The Schools Folklore Collection can be viewed on microfilm at the County Library, Tallaght.