Waterford County Museum, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford, Ireland. Charity Reg: 17397
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Museum Talk

Our last talk of the series for 2022 was given by Bernadette Guest, Waterford City and County Heritage Officer. The talk was well attended. Bernadette outlined many projects completed or to be completed by the end of this year, such as the Knockboy Church, Kilgobinet etc.  She detailed the many Decades of Centenaries Projects \which were initiated by local communities around the county.  She mentioned the eagerly awaited book on the Cumann na mBan, compiled by Eddie Cantwell and Chrissy Knight O' Connor.

Waterford County Museum would like to thank Merry's Gastro Pub, Main Street Dungarvan for facilitating are talks this year.

Stories from Old Newspapers

 Freeman’s journal 5th December 1907

A special interest attaches this to tonight’s performance by the Carl Rosa Company of Balfe’s evergreen opera “The Bohemian Girl”, in as much as an old favourite Irish tenor, Mr. Patrick O’Shea will be heard in the part of Thaddeus.  Mr. O’ Shea, who is a native of Lismore, Co. Waterford, had formerly been a useful member of the Carl Rosa Company in the ‘eighties’, but in 1900 he threw himself into the Irish Ireland Movement, and devoted his energies to the rendition of traditional Irish songs, appearing with conspicuous success at all the big concerts in England, Scotland, Ireland and America from 1901 to 1906. 

Now that he has again joined the Carl Rosa Company, it goes without saying that he will be accorded a heady ovation in an opera composed by a Irishman, Michael William Balfe.  It may be of interest to mention that ‘The Bohemian Girl’ was first produced in Drury Land London, on No 27th 1843, when Harrison sang the part of Thaddeus.

Patrick O’ Shea was born in Lismore in 1872 and educated at Mount Melleray.

In 1898 he won the men’s singing prise at the Oireachtas, in 1903 he was described as ‘Irelands own tenor’. In May 1919 a memorial concert was held in Dublin in his honour. The Carl Rosa Company was founded in 1873 by Carl Rosa, a German musical impresario.

The Freeman’s Journal 8th April 1919 published his obituary:

“Numerous friends and admires will regret to hear of the death of Mr. Patrick O’Shea, the well known Irish tenor, which took place at his residence, 52 South Richmond Street, yesterday.  Mr. O’Shea’s early success was with the Ludwig concert party (Dublin born William Ledwidge (1847-1923) had his own touring company: Ludwig concert party in the 1890’s), with whom he toured Ireland, England and Scotland.

“Pat” as he was familiarly known to his friends, enjoyed great popularly at home and aboard.  His voice was of a pure and sympathetic quality…he was the first professional singer who sang songs in Irish on leading concert platforms, and his appearances at the Queen’s Hall and Albert Hall… were always popular musical events”


Stories from Old Newspapers

 Cork Examiner 11 January 1868

Soiree in Cappoquin

On Twelfth Night a fashionable soiree was held in the Reading-rooms here. It was attended by most of the respectable inhabitants of this and the neighbouring towns, and patronized by the worthy pastor of the parish, the Rev. Michael Spratt, P.P., who is ever anxious and ready to forward any movement tending towards the advancement and reasonable enjoyment of his parishioners.

On this occasion he not only gave the use of the reading-rooms, but kindly and warmly announced the soiree and the object of it from the altar. It is to this mainly due, seconded by the earnest exertions of the gentlemen of the committee, that it has been so successful, leaving in the hands of the treasurer, Mr. J.E. Walsh, a handsome balance towards supplying the wants of our chapel. The extensive rooms were carefully festooned with evergreens, which were kindly given by Mrs. Chearnley, Salterbridge, to the members of the committee. When the company assembled, with the numerous lights and the soul-stirring music of the brass band, specially engaged for the occasion, it was indeed a festive scene. Dancing continued until one a.m., when a most recherché supper was laid, to which 130 guests were together seated. The caterer was Mr. M. Morrissey, Hotel, Cappoquin. To all who know him, it is enough to say, that everything was in his best style. All the mysteries of the cuisine were exhausted, and nothing was wanting that could add to the appearance of the board or the wishes of the most fastidious epicure. When the supper, dessert and wines, were fully discussed, the band again struck up dance music, and on the ‘light fantastic toe’, with unflagging spirit, the company held the floor till morning. Special credit belongs to…the Rev. P. Spratt. C.C., who remained to witness all the enjoyment of the night, and to the members of the committee, Messrs M. Morrissey. T.F. Bayley, J.E. Walsh, M.F. Phelan, C.J. O’Connell, and J. Morrissey, for their untiring exertions to render the soiree what it has been – a complete success.



St Mary's Roman Catholic Church Cappoquin

Stories from Old Newspapers


Dungarvan Observer 2 March 1925

West Waterford Hunt Ball

The West Waterford Hunt Ball was held this year in Dromana [House] on February 24th. Supper was supplied by Messrs Mills, Dublin, was served at 11.30. Mr Manahan [W.A. Manahan] and some of his orchestra provided the music. Mr Dawson, head gardener at Dromana, designed and carried out all the floral decorations both in the ballroom and supper room, Mr. Villiers-Stuart, M.F.H., and his sister acted as host and hostess, and there were present over 100 guests. Some came from 40 or 50 miles away, but mainly it was a friendly little affair, all the members of the hunt dancing with each other.

Many of the gentlemen wore pink coats, which makes hunt balls so picturesque. Amongst those present were – Lady Patricia Beresford, Miss Clodagh Anson, Miss Musgrave, Miss Percival Maxwell, Miss Stella Annesley, Miss Barbara Villiers-Stuart, Miss St John Murphy, Mr. R.H. Keane, Capt. Holroyd Smyth, Mr. G.H. Russell, Capt. Alexander, Mr. P Rohan, Mr. Sharpe Bolster, Mr. Hallinan, Capt. Newenham, Mr. Cecil Smyth, Hon Claud Anson, Mr. John Perry, Mr. Cecil Hodgson, Mr. Pennyfeather, Mr. Sheil Walshe, Mr. & Mrs P. Walsh, Mr. & Mrs Fitzgerald, Miss White, Miss Godfrey, Miss Laura Power, Mr. Michael O’Brien, Mr. Murphy, Secretary West Waterford Hunt, and Mrs Murphy, Mr. Curran, Capt. Wall, Mr M O’Brien, and Miss O’Brien, etc.

Dromana House Circa 1890




GallowsHill Landscape Vision Study


Prepared by Paul Hogarth Company, is now available to view at the Waterford County Museum during normal opening hours.

Ardmore Book

 Ardmore – Memory and Story Book

The History, Traditions and Stories of an Irish Village

By Siobhan Lincoln

Stories of growing up in an Irish village told with a "blend of history, tradition and humour". Siobhán Lincoln records the social history of Ardmore village, tales of school days, dances, fishing, work, language and tradition. This book will be of interest to anyone who wants a picture of life in rural Ireland from the late 19th century to the dawning of the Millennium.

This book can be purchased at County Waterford Museum.

Paperback €20

Hardback €25

Museum's Next Talk 11th May

The Museum is happy to announce our talk for the month of May.

This is our final talk of the series and carries the title; ‘Waterford Heritage – Plans, Projects and Partnerships.’ The Speaker is Waterford County Heritage Officer Bernadette Guest.  The Heritage Officer’s function is extremely broad… Some of the principal area’s addressed by the Heritage Officer include; local heritage plans; Advice and Information for local Authority Staff; Heritage Appraisal; Public Relations; Public Consultation; Strategies, Policies and Projects.

The Museum Society over the years has had numerous occasions to call on the expertise of the County Heritage officer for advice and assistance.

The talk will be held upstairs at Merry’s Gastro Bar, Lower Main Street, Dungarvan.

Date: Wednesday May 11th

Time at 8p.m. and all are welcome

The usual admission fee of €5


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