February 2021

February 2021 
News and updates on the programme of commemorations relating to the 
events in Irish history that took place between 1912 and 1923.  
If you would like to inform us of any suitable material for future
newsletters – anything related to the Decade of Centenaries – please feel
free to email [email protected].  

Decade of Centenaries Schools Irish History Competition for Primary
and Post-Primary Schools 2021
As part of the ‘Decade of Centenaries’ commemorations, the Department
of Education is inviting schools and students at all levels of primary and
post-primary schools across Ireland, in the 2020/2021 school year, to enter the annual schools’ history competition. The selected themes have a
particular link to events of a century ago across the island of Ireland. 

 This year, at both primary and post-primary levels, projects are invited
under the following general headings. Please note that all categories can
incorporate a local/regional studies theme: 

Revolution in Ireland – a study of a  political/revolutionary event from
the 1912–1922 period, a particular aspect of the event, or an
individual/group/organisation associated with  it. As with the other
categories, this can incorporate a local/regional studies theme. 

Ireland and the First World War – a study of the Irish experience of the
war from the perspective of an individual or group. This could involve a
focus on a particular battle, an individual participant’s story or a
consideration of the entire 1914–1918 period. 

Women during the revolutionary period in Ireland – a study of a
particular individual/group/organisation/movement striving to improve
the quality of women’s lives or involved in revolutionary activity in
Ireland in the 1912–1922 period. 

War of Independence – a study of a political/revolutionary event from
the 1919–1921 period, a particular aspect of the event, or an
individual/group/organisation associated with  it. 

Civil War – a study of a particular individual/ organisation/ group/
movement/ event during the civil war in Ireland and its impact. 

The deadline for receipt of completed projects is 30 April 2021 with the
winners being announced, and prizes awarded, before the end of
September 2021.



President Higgins will host the second “Machnamh 100” seminar –
“Empire: Instincts, Interests, Power and Resistance” on 25th February.
The second seminar in the series will include consideration of European
Empires following the First World War, the British Empire in particular
and imperial attitudes and responses to occurrences in Ireland. It will also include reflections on examples of resistance to Empire in Ireland and resistance to nationalism. 

The main reflection will be given by Professor John Horne, Trinity College Dublin, who will provide an overview of the international context of the events in 1920s Ireland, including the fall of empires and the particular status/power of the British empire.  

There will be responses from President Higgins, Professor Eunan O’Halpin (Trinity College Dublin), Dr Marie Coleman (Queen’s University Belfast), Professor Alvin Jackson (University of Edinburgh) and Dr. Niamh
Gallagher (St. Catharine’s College, Cambridge). 



Digital Repository of Ireland Launches New Series on Using
Digital Archives for Academic Research

Using Digital Archives for Historical Research The first webinar in
the series, ‘Using Digital Archives for Historical Research’, will take place
on 23 February 2021 at 3:00pm

Speakers will include:
Dr Ciarán Wallace,
Deputy Director (Public Engagement Lead) at
Beyond 2022: Ireland’s Virtual Record Treasury,  

Dr Siobhán Doyle, who will be sharing how digital materials from collections in the DRI and the Bureau of Military History have informed her historical research, and

Tara Doyle and Stephanie Rousseau from Dublin City Library and
Archives (DCLA) who will be highlighting DCLA digital collections.  



The Reconciliation Fund supported Spring Talk Series, in conjunction with Dr Éamon Phoenix and other noted historians, are now available to block book. The lectures will be via Zoom live from Clifton House on Thursday evenings, commencing 25th February.

Each lecture will last approximately 45 minutes followed by a Q&A session. Please note the pre-sale is for a block booking for attending all five lectures via Zoom

Tickets for individual lectures will be available after our pre-sale. 
Please note that all talks, with the exception of 25 February, will begin at
Zoom codes are unique for each  talk and will be sent out on the
morning of the event.



Reinterpreting Museum Collections of the Irish Revolution  A seminar
by Dr Siobhán Doyle (Technological University, Dublin) as part of the
Contemporary Irish History Seminar Series in association with Trinity
Long Room Hub. Wednesday, 3 March 2021, 4 – 5pm  



An invitation to the launch of ‘A Time to Remember: A Journey of Reconciliation’ by Sr Maeve Brady RSM, which takes place on Wednesday, 10 February, at 7.30 pm on MS Teams. 
We are called to ethical and inclusive remembrance.
Sr Maeve attempts to respond to the challenge personally, in a project
relating to all sides at Clonfin. Her project will be launched by Dr Suzanne Mulligan, lecturer in Moral Theology in the Pontifical University,
St Patrick’s College, Maynooth. 

The launch will be hosted by Longford
County Library, Heritage and Archives Services and the link can be
obtained by emailing 
[email protected].


Katharine O’Shea centenary—what if she and Parnell never met? 
No other woman who never set foot on the island—with the possible
exception of Queen Elizabeth I—has had a greater effect on the history of
Ireland. But who was Katharine O’Shea (née Wood)? And what if she and
Charles Stewart Parnell never met? Listen to History Ireland editor,
Tommy Graham, discuss this contrafactual with Mary Kenny, Patrick
Maume, Daniel Mulhall, and Margaret O’Callaghan.

This Hedge School, supported by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media under the Decade of Centenaries 2012-2023 initiative, was recorded via Zoom and is now available as a podcast. 



‘Spies and informers beware!’—intelligence and counterintelligence
in the War of Independence One of the most important—and
controversial—aspects of the War of Independence was the ‘intelligence
war’.   Given the role of spies and informers in defeating previous
insurrections, it is not surprising that Michael Collins, the IRA’s Director of Intelligence, was keen to insure that history did not repeat itself.  How
successful was he? 

To shed light on this ‘shadow war’ listen to History Ireland editor, Tommy Graham, in discussion with Andy Bielenberg, Cécile Gordon, Eunan O’Halpin and Gerry White. 

This podcast is supported by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media under the Decade of Centenaries 2012-2023 Initiative.


As part of the Westmeath County Council Decade of Centenaries
programme, Ian Kenneally was appointed Historian in Residence for
The residency is supported by the Department of Culture, Heritage
and the Gaeltacht’s Decade of Centenaries 2012-2023 initiative, in
partnership with Westmeath County Council. 

The goal of the residency is to provide the public with a trustworthy and enlightening source of information on Westmeath during 1920.‌ Ian has been compiling a blog of events which took place in Westmeath during this period.  



As part of the Westmeath County Council Decade of Centenaries
programme, applications are invited for the Historian in Residence Grant
Scheme 2021. The Residency is supported by the Decade of Centenaries
Programme, Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sports and
Media in partnership with Westmeath County Council.



Over the coming months, Ireland’s Embassy and Consulates across the
United States will join with the American Conference for Irish Studies &
Irish Studies programmes to host a series of lectures and panels reflecting
on the final years of this formative decade of centenaries. This first
seminar in the series – ‘Was it for this’ – focuses on the aftermath to 1916,
the renewal of Sinn Féin and the Irish Volunteers, the conscription crisis,
the election of 1918 & the First Dáil. Hosted by Boston College, in
association with the ACIS New England Region & the Consulate General of
Ireland in Boston, it features a range of outstanding scholars – Marjorie
Howes (Boston College); Rob Savage (Boston College); Fearghal McGarry
(Queens University); Bridget Keown (University of Pittsburgh), and Mike
Cronin (Boston College) – as well as Ireland’s Ambassador Daniel Mulhall. 


 Ministers Martin and Humphreys announce release of more historic
records online.

An additional year of historic Births, Marriages and Deaths are now
available to view on the website www.irishgenealogy.ie The records now
available online include:

·         Birth register records – 1864 to 1920

·         Marriage register records – 1845 to 1945

·         Death register records – 1864 to 1970 
Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine
Martin, T.D., welcomed this latest release:

This release of register data by the Civil Registration Service is part of the
ongoing partnership between my Department and the Department of Social
Protection, Community and Rural Development and the Islands. I know that
this annual update is eagerly anticipated and will be of great benefit to
anyone carrying out research on their Irish Ancestry.

Minister for Social Protection, Community and Rural Development and
the Islands, Heather Humphreys T.D., (which has responsibility for the
Civil Registration Service) emphasised:

I am delighted that the Civil Registration Service has provided another year
of historic Birth, Marriage and Death register entries to the 
www.irishgenealogy.ie website. I trust that this information will be of great
use to anyone with an interest in genealogy and may act as a spur to those
who would now like to start their own family history research. 


 New Publications  When women are erased from history, what are we
left with? Between 1912 and 1922, Ireland experienced sweeping social
and political change, including the Easter Rising, World War I, the Irish
Civil War, the fight for Irish women’s suffrage, the founding of the Abbey
Theatre, and the passage of the Home Rule Bill. 

Women and the Decade of Commemorations, edited by Oona Frawley,
highlights not only the responsibilities of Irish women, past and present,
but it also privileges women’s scholarship in an attempt to redress what
has been a long-standing imbalance.  Contributors discuss the importance
of addressing missing history and curating memory to correct the
historical record when it comes to remembering revolution. Together, the
essays in Women and the Decade of Commemorations consider the impact
of women’s unseen, unsung work, which has been critically important in
shaping Ireland, a country that continues to struggle with honoring the
full role of women today.


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