Launch of Spirit of Mother Jones Festival Cork 2021.

The official launch of the tenth annual Spirit of Mother Jones Festival will be held in University College Cork on Thursday 14th October 2021 in conjunction with the UCC Department of Community and Civic Engagement and Community Week.

Mona Polacca.

 
The Cork Mother Jones Committee is also delighted to collaborate with The Center for Earth Ethics in New York for a special Zoom event hosted by University College Cork later that evening  at 5pm local time on Thursday 14th October featuring an interview with Mona Polacca, a Native American spiritual elder from Arizona. All are welcome to register for this event.

Details of the talk. 
https://www.ucc.ie/en/civic/open/communityweek/thursday/spirit of motherjones/

To register for password;  
https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZEld-iurDkpHNx9gIxo1TRQjAZieP-304Pj

According to James Nolan of the Cork Mother Jones Committee.

We are very happy to work with the UCC Department of Community and Civic Engagement and The Center for Earth Ethics in New York to help bring this outstanding and interesting event to Cork.

We hope it will attract a large audience of young people and students to the ideas and thoughts of the Native American community as to the way we are treating the Earth. Mona Polacca will explore our connections to Mother Earth and the Environment from a Native American perspective. We wish to thank University College Cork for its cooperation to present this relevant and challenging discussion, which will be repeated later at the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival  in November.

The tenth Spirit of Mother Jones Festival will be held from the 25th November to 28th November and it will be largely available to all as it will be shown on Cork Community TV (see www.corkcommunitytv.ie). We are optimistic (subject to the Covid-19 provisions at that time) to have a number of live events in and around Shandon during the period.

Among the topics which will be discussed at this year’s festival will include an account by UCC historian and author, Donal Ó Drisceoil of the life and death of Cork republican, trade union organiser and socialist Tadhg Barry of Blarney Street who was killed on the 15th November 1921, just over 100 years ago.

In addition,  historian Anne Twomey will discuss the life of Muriel MacSwiney in an interview “Muriel MacSwiney….an Unlikely Rebel”. From the Mother Jones archives, Richard T Cooke will introduce the late Dr Sean Pettit’s presentation about his beloved Cork to the festival on 29th July 2016.

Many other talks and documentaries from the last nine years of Mother Jones festivals will be shown on Cork Community TV over the weekend. The full programme of events will issue later”.

For further information see www.motherjonescork.com.

10th Spirit of Mother Jones Festival Official Announcement

Our 10th Festival – November 25-28th 2021!

Keep your calendar clear! The Cork Mother Jones Committee wishes to announce that the 2021 Spirit of Mother Jones Festival will take place on the final weekend of November (Thursday November 25th – Sunday 28th November.). This will be our tenth festival and we are eagerly looking forward to it.

“We are absolutely delighted to announce that our tenth annual Spirit of Mother Jones Festival will be held later this year. The dates for the four-day festival will be from Thursday 25th November until Sunday 28th November 2021 inclusive.

We are aiming to have the festival at venues in and around Shandon as usual although this is dependent on the Government Covid-19 rules which apply by November, however we remain very optimistic that these will permit gatherings and meetings by this time.

In case there remain issues with Covid-19, we can confirm that as a contingency we will also prepare a full online festival. 

The Cork Mother Jones Committee is determined to ensure there will be a Spirit of Mother Jones festival in 2021 and we are working towards achieving that outcome.”

James Nolan spokesperson for the festival

Full details of our festival partnerships, music and many other events will be announced over the summer/ autumn as they are confirmed.

The expanded story of Cork-born Mary Harris/Mother Jones and the extraordinary role of the Irish Diaspora in the organisation of the radical trade union movement in America is now freely available to all on our festival website

It has been updated significantly during the course of 2021 and this will continue regularly as more information becomes available.

Shandon Bells

The Spirit of Mother Jones Festival 2020

The full Spirit of Mother Jones Festival 2020 programme from Friday 27th November 2020 to Monday 30th November 2020 is now available. All events are free to view on Cork Community TV and everybody is welcome over the course of the weekend. We hope that you enjoy the 2020 programme.

Friday 27th November


3:00 p.m. The Dynamic Role of Labour Unions in the Wake of Covid-19 and
the Safe Keeping of Front-Line Workers”
A Partner Event with University College Cork Civic Engagement and the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival
Speakers: Phil Ní Sheaghdha (INMO), Ann Piggott (ASTI), Dr Edward Lahiff (IFUT)
Co-ordinated by Dr John Barimo.
Click Here for direct webinar access at the time of the event.
7.30 p.m. Introduction by Cllr Joe Kavanagh, Lord Mayor of Cork
“What Did the Women Do Anyway?”
A discussion with Anne Twomey of the Shandon Area History Group


Saturday 28th November


11.00 a.m. Tadhg Barry Remembered
Documentary film by Frameworks Films in collaboration with the Cork Council of Trade Unions.
2:30 p.m. “Ahawadda to Dáil Eireann: the amazing story of Sean Dunne, union organiser”
Discussion with historian Diarmuid Kingston
3:30 p.m. “And the World Turns Away” Discussion with Peadar King
7:00 p.m. “Cork Burning” A power point presentation by Michael Lenihan
8:00 p.m. An evening with Jimmy Crowley at the Firkin Theatre
Sunday 29th November
Mother Jones Festival Archives
11:00 a.m. 2:30 p.m. 4:00 p.m.
8:10 p.m.
“The story of Hillsborough” with Margaret Aspinall (2013) “Error of Judgement” with Chris Mullin (2015)
“One Woman’s Fight for Justice” with Louise O’Keeffe (2018)


Sunday evening with the Cork Singers’ Club

(Zoom and live on Cork Singers’ Club Facebook page)
If anyone wishes to participate email John Murphy
dublinhill6@gmail.com


Monday 30th November
Mother Jones Commemoration Day: 90th Anniversary
3:00 p.m. 4:00 p.m. 7.00 p.m.
8:00 p.m.
“Ellen Cotter and Inchigeela in the 1800s” by Joe Creedon (2019) “The story of Mother Jones” by Professor Elliott J Gorn (2019)
Mother Jones and her Children
Documentary by Frameworks Films
“Shandon in the time of Mother Jones”
Narrated by Kieran McCarthy
8:30 p.m. Mother Jones: America’s Most Dangerous Woman By Rosemary Feurer
8:45 p.m. “Mother Jones visits Shandon in 1920”
With Joan Goggin
9:00 p.m. The legacy of Mother Jones. Tributes to Mother Jones
Times and Link at http://www.corkcommunitytv.ie or Virgin Media 803 on the box. Check the schedule on Cork Community TV for final times and repeats.


(Full programme and times on http://www.motherjonescork.com and Facebook)

From Ahawadda to Dáil Éireann… The Amazing Story of Labour Organiser, Sean Dunne.

The Revolutionary period and the subsequent creation of the Irish Free State and later the Republic has given rise to some amazing family stories. Very few can surpass the story of Sean Dunne, a Trade Union organiser, mentored by Jim Larkin and later Labour Party TD.


Filmed in West Cork, this discussion with local historian and author Diarmuid Kingston reveals the account of the Ahawadda Ambush (located on the road to Ring outside Timoleague) on 10th May1920, in which three Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) lost their lives in an ambush. This was the greatest loss of life of old RIC members in a single ambush in West Cork during the War of Independence.


Among them was Constable Edward Dunne from Co Laois. He was 32 years old, married to Bridget Coppinger, a school teacher with two children. Their young son Sean, was born in December 1918 in Timoleague. Constable Edward Dunne was buried quietly in Raheen in Co Laois.


Sean grew up in Waterford and Wicklow and in the late 30s was arrested and served time in the Curragh Internment Camp for Republican activities. He came under the influence of Jim Larkin and the Workers’ Union of Ireland and became one of the most effective union organisers in rural Ireland in the 1940s, founding the Federation of Rural Workers (FRW), which had up to 20,000 members at its height.


As its General Secretary, he organised countless strikes among rural workers and was instrumental in campaigning for and obtaining the weekly half day for his members in the early 1950s.


Later he was elected a TD for the Labour Party, when he was just 28 years old, and became one of the most colourful elected public representatives in the Dail. He had the record of being ejected from two parliaments, Dail Eireann and Stormont, as well as British Labour Party conferences.. Once labelled “an extreme communist” by Sean MacEntee,


Sean Dunne was described by one political correspondent as being “in daily conflict with Authority on cases of social justice, on the side of the lost nobodies of the world”.


His famous Leabhar Ballyfermot which he always carried contained the details of his constituents’ problems. Trade union organiser, writer, playwright, orator, Irish speaker and campaigner for social justice, this west Cork born politician died suddenly following the General Election in 1969.


His funeral at the Pro-Cathedral was attended by President Eamonn De Valera, Taoiseach Jack Lynch, Fine Gael Leader Liam Cosgrave and the Cabinet and thousands of workers.


He had travelled a very long road in life and his virtual State funeral was in stark contrast to that of his father who was buried quietly in a graveyard in Co Laois almost 50 years earlier.


In this film documentary discussion with Diarmuid Kingston, we look at the Ahawadda Ambush and we examine the subsequent life of Sean Dunne T.D, a remarkable trade union organiser.


Diarmuid is the author of Beleaguered (A History of the RIC in West Cork during the War of Independence) and has written extensively on the period.


The film will be shown during the forthcoming Spirit of Mother Jones festival and forms part of our contribution to Cork Commemoration 1920-23.


Visit www.motherjonescork.com and festival Facebook from November 23rd for the full programme as well as the links to join in the festival from Thursday 27th November to Monday 30th November.

The Spirit of Mother Jones Festival 2020 on Cork Community TV

Beginning on Saturday 1st August, the Cork Mother Jones Committee in conjunction with Cork Community TV are making available on television, some of the talks and presentations, which have been delivered at the Spirit of Mother Jones Festivals and Summer Schools since 2012.

The original series of Mother Jones annual lectures, will be shown on Saturday next while during the month of August, further talks delivered over the years at the Summer School will be televised. These will feature Margaret Aspinall, Louise O’Keeffe, Fr. Peter McVerry, Chris Mullin, Anne Twomey and many others.

These are free to view, thanks to Frameworks Films and Cork Community TV, for allowing us to celebrate Mother Jones during August.

The 2020 festival will be held in late November 2020. Further talks and speakers, will be televised during the November Festival.

To see the schedules or tune into the live stream please visit www.corkcommunitytv.ie

Mor tune into Virgin Media Channel 803.

Spirit of Mother Jones Festival Cork

Mother Jones Lives.

Some photos of past speakers, throughout the years.

Fr. Peter McVerry at the plaque in 2015.
Louise O’Keeffe receiving the Spirit of Mother Jones Award in 2018 from James Nolan and Ann Piggott of the Cork Mother Jones Committee.
Sue Roberts, Margaret Aspinall, Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr. Catherine Clancy, and Professor Simon Cordery in 2013.
Kaiulani Lee with Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr. John Buttimer in 2012.
Marat Moore, Professor Rosemary Feurer, Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr. John Buttimer, and Professor Elliott Gorn in 2012.
Former miner, Marat Moore in 2012.
Warren Davies in 2017.
Lord Mayor of Cork, Mick Finn, with the Mother Jones’, Joan Goggin, Aoife Delaney and Loretta Williams.
Luke Dineen in 2016.
Loretta Williams with Dominic O’Callaghan, Cork Mother Jones Committee in 2018.

Impressive Line-Up for Limerick Soviet 100

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Our best wishes to the Limerick Soviet 100 committee on their forthcoming events to mark the centenary of the Limerick Soviet, an uprising of around 14,000 workers in a city which then had a population of around 40,000 people.   The Limerick Soviet 100 committee has produced an impressive line up events for the festival which runs from 5th to 28th April.  The full brochure can be downloaded from their website here: Limerick Soviet 100

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Money issued during the Limerick Soviet

The Limerick Soviet came about during Ireland’s War of Independence (1919-1921) in the aftermath of the death of a key member of the Irish Republican Army who also happened to be a leading trade unionist in the city.  The reaction of the occupying British forces to the attempted rescue of Byrne led to the declaration of the city as a Special Military Area and draconian regulations were introduced including the insistence that all citizens carry permits and blocking many of them from getting to and from their places of work.  This forced the Limerick United Trades and Labour Council to react and on 14th April 1919 some 14,000 Limerick workers went on strike to protest against the restrictions.  The Strike Committee, led by carpenter John Cronin, took over the running of the city and began to organise and supervise the distribution of food, transport, communications and movement in the City and even printed its own currency during the period. The Limerick Soviet was born!

It promises to be a most interesting series of events.

Mother Jones & her Children to be screened at film festivals

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The documentary Mother Jones and Her Children, produced by Cork based Frameworks Films will be screened on Friday 12th June at 12pm in Cork County Hall as part of the Community TV Festival taking place there on 12th/13th June 2015. 

The documentary, which explores the life of Cork trade union activist Mary Harris, known as Mother Jones, will also be screened at this year’s Galway Film Fleadh and is scheduled to be shown on Friday 10th July at the Cinemobile in Galway.  

Full details about the Community TV Festival at Cork County Hall can be obtained at www.corkcommunitytv.ie