The 7th Spirit of Mother Jones Festival & Summer School came to an end last evening (Saturday, 4th August) with a well-attended toast to Mother Jones at the plaque in her honour at John Redmond Street. The 2018 festival has been a tremendous success with capacity crowds at all our events and a combination of fabulous lectures, film and music.
We wish to thank all those who contributed to making the event such a success.
Here are some photos from Saturday’s events:
Micheline Sheehy Skeffington who gave a fascinating insight into the life and activism of her grandmother Hanna Sheehy Skeffington
William Hammond of the Cork Mother Jones Committee makes a presentation to Micheline Sheehy Skeffington
Frank Connolly who spoke about his new book NAMA-land
Frank Connolly after receiving presentation from Ann Piggott and Ann Rea of the Cork Mother Jones Committee.
Musician Mick Treacy with his daughter Jennifer
Ukelele band providing some of the music at the Butter market plaza
Loretta Williams as “Mother Jones” at the Mother Jones plaque
Rory McCarthy sings at the Mother Jones Plaque
Some of the crowd at the annual Toast to Mother Jones at the Mother Jones Plaque
Loretta Williams as Mother Jones with Ann Piggott of the Cork Mother Jones committee
Ladies in period costume at the Mother Jones Plaque
Photos from the second day of the 7th Spirit of Mother Jones Festival and Summer School 2018. Today (Saturday, 4th August) is the final day of the festival. Timetable to be uploaded on this site shortly.
James Nolan of the Cork Mother Jones Committtee presenting the Spirit of Mother Jones award 2018 to former Dunnes Stores striker Mary Manning at the Firkin Crane Theatre in Shandon last evening. The award was jointly made to Mary and the other former Dunnes Stores strikers who maintained their action in opposition to the sale of products from then Apartheid South Africa for almost three years
Dr. Emily Twarog at the Cathedral Visitor Centre
Video: Cork’s own Jimmy Crowley singing one of his own songs about the Spanish Civil War.
Cork’s own troubadour Jimmy Crowley was in fine form at the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival at the Maldron Hotel
The Mother Jones Plaque at John Redmond Street. The final event of the festival will take place at this location at 7.30pm this evening (4th August) – the annual Toast and songs to Mother Jones. All welcome
St. Ann’s Church of Ireland, Shandon, Cork
Professor Louise Ryan with Ger O’Mahony of the Cork Mother Jones Committee
Presentation to Mary Manning with members of the Cork Mother Jones Committee
2018 Cork Spirit of Mother Jones Award for Mary Manning and the Dunnes Stores Strikers.
The Cork Mother Jones Committee is proud to announce that the 2018 Spirit of Mother Jones Award has been awarded to Mary Manning and the Dunnes Stores Strikers.
On July 19th 1984, Mary, while working on the cash registers at the Dunnes Stores branch on Henry Street in Dublin refused to register the sale of two grapefruit for a customer in accordance with the stated policy of her trade union (IDATU…..now Mandate Trade Union).
Mary was immediately suspended by the Dunnes Stores management, and thus a simple action initiated the strike…..eight women and one man joined Mary on the picket lines, and the strike continued for 2 years and nine months. Their actions on that day led eventually to world-wide interest and forced a change in Irish Government policy.
According to James Nolan, spokesperson for the Cork Mother Jones Committee,
which presents this annual award
“Mary Manning and her colleagues were willing to act in accordance with the stated policy of their trade union motions and do what was right to make a determined stand to raise awareness of the brutal apartheid regime which existed in South Africa. Mary’s stand on that day in July 1984 triggered the subsequent events.
In spite of all obstacles and harassment and silence from those who should have supported them, these workers refused to be silenced and bravely stood up for the human rights of South Africans who were suffering under the apartheid regime.”
“At extraordinary personal cost, Mary Manning and her colleagues walked the picket lines month after month for over 30 months. Their actions resonated around the world and gave inspiration and hope to the oppressed people suffering under the apartheid regime.”
“None other than the future President of South Africa, Mr. Nelson Mandela himself who was in prison at the time, has stated that the Dunnes Stores Strikers gave him great hope and inspiration. Their actions forced the Irish Government to eventually ban the import of South African products to Ireland and triggered the wider boycott of these products elsewhere. Mary Manning and the Dunnes Stores Strikers are worthy recipients of the 2018 Cork Spirit of Mother Jones Award.”
Mary Manning is a native of Dublin. She emigrated to Australia for a number of years following the ending of the strike in 1987. Mary has two daughters Siobhan and Niamh and lives with her partner Dave in Dublin. She is the author with Sinead O’Brien of the recent book Striking Back – The Untold Story of an Anti-ApartheidStriker, published by Collins Press
The Cork Mother Jones Committee is honoured that Mary has come to speak at the 2018 Spirit of Mother Jones Summer School and has accepted this award on behalf of herself and her brave colleagues. The award is presented annually to people who act and work in the spirit of Mother Jones and Mary Manning and her colleagues join a worthy list of past recipients.
The 2018 Award will be presented to Ms. Manning by Mr. James Nolan of the Cork Mother Jones Committee on Friday evening August 3rd at the Firkin Crane Theatre, in the Shandon Historic Quarter in Cork.
The Dunnes Stores Strikers:
Mary Manning, Cathyrn O’Reilly, Sandra Griffin, Alma Russell, Theresa Mooney, Vonnie Malone, Karen Gearon, Tommy Davis, Michelle Glavin and Liz Deasy,
The Cork Spirit of Mother Jones Awards to date have been,
2013, Margaret Aspinall and Sue Roberts. (Hillsborough Family Support Group)
2014, Gareth Peirce. Solicitor.
2015 Fr Peter McVerry. Campaigner for the homeless.
2016 Dave Hopper (RIP) General Secretary, Durham Miners’ Association.
2017 Ken Fleming. (International Transport Workers Federation.) .
The flowers are blooming, the window displays are resplendent and the streets are gleaming in the Shandon area as it awaits tomorrow’s start of the 7th Spirit of Mother Jones Festival and Summer School which begins tomorrow (Wednesday) and runs until Saturday, 4th August. Our thanks to all concerned.
Members and friends of the Cork Mother Jones Committee last night (30th April) gathered at the Mother Jones plaque on John Redmond Street in the Shandon area of Cork to mark Mother Jones “American Birthday” which is traditionally celebrated on May Day.
While Mary “Mother Jones” was born in Cork and baptised on 1st August 1837, she always celebrated her birthday on May Day. In collaboration with the Mother Jones Museum in Mount Olive, Illinois the Cork Mother Jones committee held a special toast to Mother Jones at the commemorative plaque which was unveiled in 2012 to mark the 175th anniversary of her birth (as Mary Harris) in Cork.
The Cork Mother Jones Committee wishes to take this opportunity to extend May Day greetings to all our friends in Cork, the United States and Worldwide.