Cork – where Mary Harris was born

A few people have asked us to put up some images and songs about Cork, the birthplace of  Mother Jones.  She was born on the Northside of Cork in 1837, probably in the last week of July.  We do know for certain that she was baptised in St. Mary’s North Cathedral, known locally then and now as the North Chapel and featured in the first video here.  It is to the right of the video shown here.  The tall pepper-pot shaped spire is the  steeple of St. Ann’s Shandon which is known the world over for its famous bells.   The North Cathedral was and still is the Roman Catholic parish church for the area while Shandon is the Church of Ireland (Anglican / Protestant) parish church.

You can see both and the general  area of the Northside which would have been known to the young Mary Harris before she and her family left for North America sometime around 1851/’52.  The singer in this short clip is Kieran Goss, from Co. Down on the other end of Ireland.

and below this more recent video from the Shandon Street Festival with local singer and historian Richard T. Cooke singing his own composition, “Cork City is my home” – Richard is also a member of the Cork Mother Jones Commemorative Committee and will no doubt give us a rendition of the song on the day of our celebrations to mark the 175th anniversary of Mother Jones.

and here are the Shandon Bells, which have been ringing out over Cork city for almost 300 years

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One response to “Cork – where Mary Harris was born

  1. Well done to Richard (dowtcha boy!) and the Shandon Bells rendition. It adds to the site doesn’t it? By the way, the baptism date was 1st August 1837 per Cathedral Baptismal records and since babies were baptized within hours of birth it’s 99% sure she was born the same date. 1830 wrongly appears on some websites and books but hopefully they’ll correct that in time. Blarney St is only one suggested birthplace (Blackpool & Fair Hill are others), whilst the latest theory is she was born and lived around Dominick St itself. Until we get the facts we can’t place her at a specific point other than it’s in the northside. Maybe we’ll know for sure before next August….
    Jim

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