Dates for Spirit of Mother Jones Festival 2017 announced

The 2017 Spirit of Mother Jones Festival and Summer School will be held from Tuesday 1st August (Mother Jones Day) until Saturday 5th August. The full programme of events will be announced in Spring 2017.
 
The Cork Mother Jones Committee wish to thank everyone who assisted in any way with the 2016 event. We want to thank especially our speakers, musicians and singers and we appreciate very much the huge numbers of people who attended the events. We enjoyed five wonderful days in the Shandon community. The Committee is now looking forward to the 2017 Festival and summer school and if you have any ideas or suggestions for 2017, please forward for consideration to us via motherjonescork@gmail.com   

August 1st – Mother Jones Day

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Today, 1st August, is Mother Jones Day in Cork and it is also the final day of the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival 2016.

There are just three events on today’s programme all of which will be held at the Maldron Hotel, Shandon.  We start at 4.00pm with a showing of Tadhg Barry Remembered – the story of trade unionist, socialist and Irish republican Alderman Tadhg Barry who was shot dead by a sentry at Ballykinlar prison camp in November 1921, just hours before he was due to be released.  The documentary was made by Cork based Frameworks Films.

At 6.00pm we show The Spirit of Mother Jones Festivals Highlights 2012-2015 which features some of the memorable moments of the first four years of the festival. Our thanks to Frameworks Films who have recorded a huge amount of material at the festival since 2012 and who have similarly created a repository of film recording Cork’s present and recent past which we are certain will become a huge resource for this city.

At 7.30pm Bandon born author and award winning journalist Justine McCarthy will deliver a lecture on “Greed is Good for Nothing”.

 

All of today’s events are at the Maldron Hotel, John Redmond Street in the Shandon area of Cork and are completely free.

Some photos from the first 3 days of the festival

Laurence Fenton

Laurence Fenton who spoke about anti-slavery campaigner Frederick Douglass who spent some time in Cork in the 1840s

 

Richard and Jimmy

Two troubadours – singer / songwriter / historian Richard T. Cooke (left) who is also a member of the Spirit of Mother Jones committee with one of Cork’s “national treasures” Jimmy Crowley as they prepare for Jimmy’s performanceat the Maldron at lunchtime on Friday – and he did not disappoint!

 

Luke Dineen

Historian Luke Dineen who gave a fascinating lecture on Saturday on the Irish Post Office strike of 1922

 

Lord Mayor with Jack O'Connor

Cork’s Lord Mayor Des Cahill with SIPTU’s Jack O’Connor at the Mother Jones plaque on the opening day last Thursday (Photo: William Hammond)

 

Pat Egan, Dave Hopper, Durham, miners, Mother Jones, Cork

Pat Egan from Unite, the Union, Scotland accepts the Spirit of Mother Jones Award 2016 on behalf of the late Dave Hopper and the Durham Miner’s Association. Pat will be forwarding the Children of Lír inspired award to the association. Making the presentation was Ger O’Mahony of the Cork Mother Jones Committee

 

Tish Gbbons and Ann Piggott

Tish Gibbons from SIPTU’s Strategic Organising Department (right) receives a presentation from committee member Ann Piggott

 

Dr Sean Pettit

Widely respected veteran Cork historian Dr. Sean Pettit gave a most interesting talk and slide show presentation on “The Cork City of Mother Jones”. Dr. Pettit enthralled the capacity crowd with his lecture and some very rare old photos of Cork city were shown.

 

Crowd photo

Shot of the crowd who packed in for Dr. Sean Pettit’s talk.

 

Anne Twomey

Anne Twomey of Shandon Area History Group who gave lots of new information on the story of the little-known but very important sisters Sheila and Nora Wallace and their role in the struggle for Irish independence

 

Bernadette Wallace (right)

We were delighted to have in the audience Bernadette Wallace (right) who is the niece of the sisters Sheila and Nora Wallace. Her presence gave a sense that the links between the past and present are much closer than we sometimes realise.

 

Day 3 at the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival

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Today is the 3rd day of the 2016 Spirit of Mother Jones festival in Cork.  The first two days have been most interesting and have attracted large crowds including a number of international guests.

Today’s events begin at 11.30am with local historian Luke Dineen who will talk about the 1922 Post Office strike which was the first major industrial dispute in the history of the state.

At 2.30pm we have Anne Twomey of Blackpool Historical Society who will tell the story of the Wallace Sisters.

At 4.00pm we will show Yvette Vanson’s documentary The Battle for Orgreave which deals with the disturbing events at Orgreave during the UK Miner’s Strike. Pat Egan of Unite, the Union, himself a former miner will talk about the events.  We will include here a tribute to Dave Hopper, General Secretary of the Durham Miner’s Association who was due to speak again at this year’s festival but died suddenly earlier this month.

At 7.00pm Randall MacLowry’s film The Mine Wars will be shown. This tells the story of the West Virginia mine wars of the early years of the 20th century in which Mother Jones herself championed the rights of the miners and their.

To finish off the day, at 9.00pm a musical treat is in store with John Nyhan, Mick Treacy and Friends who will perform and sing “Songs of the Mining Tradition.

The festival continues until Monday evening, 1st August – Mother Jones Day.

 

Mother Jones wows visitors and locals alike at Cork tourist office

Mother Jones window display at Cork Tourist Office

Mother Jones window display at Cork Tourist Office

Mother Jones has arrived back in the window of Cork’s main tourist office to highlight the fact that the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival starts this Thursday (28th July).  The display, put together by Cork Mother Jones committee member Ann Piggott, is both eye-catching and excellently laid out.  Our thanks to Ann for a job well done and to the staff and management of Cork Tourist Office and Fáilte Ireland.  The display will remain all this week.

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Video review of our first four years

The following video is a brief review of the first four years of the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival which has now become part of Cork’s cultural and heritage fabric.  From our initial plan in 2012 to commemorate the 175th anniversary of the birth of Mary Harris / Mother Jones the festival has burgeoned into a very popular and well loved festival.  The 16 minute film can only hope to show a small sample of the many speakers and performers we have had over the years.  It includes two of our contributors who recently passed away, Professor James Green from the United States and Dave Hopper of the Durham Miners’ Association.  We are glad to have recorded their presence and longer excerpts have been recorded by Frameworks Films to whom we are so grateful for staying with us and recording those four years. We hope you enjoy it.