Waterford County Museum, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford, Ireland. Charity Reg: 17397
Tel: +353 (0)58 45960 Email: info@waterfordmuseum.ie
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Museum Christmas Party Night 2016 Details

The details for the Waterford County Museum Christmas Party Night 2016 have been confirmed and are as follows:

Venue:  Park Hotel Dining Room

Date:    Thursday 15th December 2016

Time:    7.15pm Meet in Bar for 7.30pm Sit Down in Dining Room

Cost:     €23 To Be Paid in Advance On or Before 8th December

Please phone or email the Museum to book your place on 058 45960 or info@waterfordmuseum.ie

Object of the Week - Macramé Bag Made by a Republican in Internment Camp

This bag was made by Patrick Ormond, Dungarvan while he was interned in Ballykinlar Camp.

The camp was situated near Dundrum Bay, Co. Down and was the first mass internment camp to be established by the British authorities in Ireland in December 1920.

A number of Dungarvan men were interned there including Dan Fraher.  They were housed in Hut 11, known as 'The Headquarters'.

The internees used their talents to organise craft classes, music, drama and sports events.  There is a copy of the camp newsletter 'Barbed Wire' and a play programme on display in the Museum.

On 9th December 1921, three days after the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty, all Republican prisoners were released.

'In sweet Ballykinlar
If you are a 'Shinner'
And the Fates they are kindly-or even so, so
In famed Hut Eleven, you're almost in Heaven
With the Senior Line Captain, alive alive oh!'

Museum Members Christmas Party 2016

The Museum Members Christmas Party 2016 is being arranged at present, and members will be notified of the details shortly.

Object of the Week - Dead Man's Penny Issued to Family of William Lewis of Dungarvan

This week's object is commonly known as the 'Dead Man's Penny'.  It is a memorial plaque which was issued after World War I to the next of kin of all those killed, in this case the family of William Lewis.  It is made of bronze and is about five inches in diameter which gave it a resemblance to the penny coin, hence the name.

William Lewis was born in Dungarvan to John and Mary Lewis, and was the husband of Mary Lewis of Davis Street, Dungarvan.  He was a private in the Royal Irish Regiment, 2nd Battalion, service number 7288.  He was previously with the Irish Guards.  He enlisted in Dungarvan and was killed in action aged 26 on 24th August 1914.  He is buried in St. Symphorien Military Cemetery in Belgium, grave or memorial reference II.B.13.

The plaque was designed by sculptor and medallist Edward Carter Preston (1885-1965).  The design depicts Britannia holding a trident beside a lion.  The designer's initials are above the front paw.  Britannia holds an olive wreath above a rectangular tablet which bears the name of the deceased.  No rank is given as it was agreed that no distinction should be made between those who died.

Two dolphins are depicted which symbolise Britain's sea power.  At the base a lion is tearing apart the German eagle.  Around the edge there is an inscription: 'He died for freedom and honour'.  On plaques issued to the six hundred women who were killed it was changed to 'She died...'

The plaques were cast at the Memorial Plaque Factory in Acton, London from 1919.  The plaques continued to be produced into the 1930's.  Along with the plaque the next of kin received a commemorative scroll from the King, and a letter.

Object of the Week - Merrick & Ruddell Souvenir Plaque

This is an example of souvenir ware made by W.H. Goss of Stoke-on-Trent.  The company was established by William Henry Goss and produced crested souvenirs in pottery from 1858 to 1939. Their pottery was popular and it was said that by the beginning of the 20th century almost 90% of homes in Britain had a piece of Goss china.

The example illustrated here is hand coloured and contains the Dungarvan Coat of Arms and a verse written by Adolphus Goss.  It also has an inscription: With Merrick & Ruddell's Compliments.  Goss mark on reverse shows it was made between 1888-1914.

Merrick & Ruddell was based on the site of the present Shaws department store in Main Street. Merrick & Ruddell opened their china and drapery shop in 1879.

Museum A.G.M.

The Museum A.G.M. was held recently and the following were elected -

New Committee:

Chairman -   Willie Fraher

Vice Chair -  Eddie Cantwell

Secretary -    Christina Flynn

Treasurer -    Mary Giblin

Committee Members:

Martin Whelan, Jim Shine, Tony Fitzgerald, Chrissy Knight, Dennis Barron, Tom Broderick, Paula Houlihan.


Membership fee €15 is now due.

Christmas Party:

Members Christmas Party is being arranged at present and members will be notified shortly.

Object of the Week - Plaster Bust of Charles Stuart Parnell made by S. Watson, Dublin, in 1887

The bust along with another of William O'Brien M.P. was ordered for the Council Chamber in June 1889.

When Parnell's affair with Katherine O'Shea became public it caused a huge scandal.  The Dungarvan Town Commissioners were not pleased and in early July 1891 the Borough Surveyor, Michael Beary proposed that the street name plate bearing Parnell's name be taken down.  On 17th July 1891 Thomas Power proposed that this bust of Parnell be removed from the Council Chamber.

The bust was put away and re-discovered in 1991 and put on display in the Museum.

On the centenary of Parnell's death in 1991 the Dungarvan Town Council erected a new street name sign with Parnell's name at Lower Main Street.

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