The Men Will Talk to Me: Mayo Interviews by Ernie O'Malley
In the 1940s and 1950s Ernie O'Malley travelled around Ire... Read more »
In the 1940s and 1950s Ernie O'Malley travelled around Ireland interviewing survivors of Ireland's struggle for Independence. These interviews, now being made available to the public for the first, time give a fascinating insight into the times and the people who fought. Many of those who were interviewed were unwilling to talk – even to their own families – about their experience, but because O'Malley was such a well-respected figure they consented to be interviewed by him. This book includes accounts of activities in many parts of Mayo and neighbouring parts of Roscommon and Sligo and most of those interviewed also fought against the Free State in the civil war. The key events described took place in the early months of 1921 in places such as Kilmeena, Tourmakeady and Carrowkennedy.
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Ernie O'Malley was a medical student in Dublin when the 1916 Rising broke out. Although initially indifferent, he soon came to sympathise with the Republican viewpoint and joined the Irish Volunteers, later to become the IRA. He quickly rose through the ranks and was soon organising the IRA around the country, reporting directly to Michael Collins and Richard Mulcahy. Cormac O'Malley is Ernie O'Malley's son. He works as an international lawyer and has been extensively involved in ensuring his father's writings are made accessible to all those interested in Irish history. Vincent Keane is from Wesport and is familiar with the families of many of thee interviewees featured in the book. He worked in the Dublin Fire Department before retiring back to Louisburgh, Co. Mayo. He has an MA in history from Maynooth, is an active member of the Westport Historical Society and has contributed many articles to their journal.