GAA in Castleisland

Energetic efforts are now being made to reorganise the erstwhile famous Castleisland Desmond Football Club … some few years ago it was a household word in almost every district in Kerry – Kerry Weekly Reporter, 9 May 1903   An essay following the history of the GAA in the Castleisland district from 1878 to 1892…Continue Reading

The Moonlighters in Castleisland

A number of pithy essays by Michael O’Donohoe sit among the vast quantity of papers in the collection.     Topics covered are wide in variety, for example, the GAA, Lord Headley, local streets and lanes, Sir Richard Griffith and the Moonlighters.   The Moonlighters, transcribed below, provides an informative sketch of the organisation from…Continue Reading

Michael O’Donohoe, ‘The Master’

The month of September recalls the birth of the late Michael O’Donohoe, creator of this collection,  who would have this year – on the 26th of the month – celebrated his 80th birthday.1     Michael was born in Tralee in 1936, the eldest of three children of Matthias O’Donohoe (1898-1995) and his wife Catherine…Continue Reading

Castleisland Church of Ireland

Church history forms part of the O’Donohoe archive and includes Michael’s impressive 39-pg study of the Church of Ireland in Castleisland.  It commences with the division of land following the death of Gerald, 16th Earl of Desmond, in 1583:1   From 1587c onwards, the seigniory of Castleisland was owned by the Herbert family, apart from…Continue Reading

An Spailpín Fánach

Two versions of the song, An Spailpín Fánach (The Roving Spalpeen) are held in the collection, one from Munster and the other from Connemara. The song dates to circa 1797:   The Irish Spáilpin fánach , the ‘Roving Spalpeen’, designates one of the flock of migratory labourers once so common when tillage was more used in…Continue Reading

Kerry Historian: T M Donovan

Michael’s collection contains many references to A Popular History of East Kerry (1931) by T M Donovan and includes Michael’s own handwritten index thereto (IE MOD-74-74.2), notes on the content of the book, genealogical notes on Donovan and a copy of an article by Donovan (IE MOD-74-74.5) published in the Westminster Review in 1902.     It is clear Michael…Continue Reading