We imagine if Mother Jones visited Shandon, before Christmas 1920. During this time Ireland’s War of Independence was raging, and much of Patrick’s Street in Cork had been recently burned down by the Auxiliaries. The funeral of Terence McSwiney, Lord Mayor of Cork, who died after a 74 day hunger strike in Brixton prison had taken place through the streets of Cork, a few weeks earlier. Mother Jones, (Joan Goggin) visits her former home near Shandon and walks around the deserted streets, where she played as a child (Aoife Delaney). She recalls her childhood memories where she, her mother (Eadaoin Delaney) and her family had once been happy prior to the Great Famine and the emigration of her family to Canada.
There is no evidence that Mary Harris/Mother Jones ever did return to Cork city where she was born in 1837 and left after the Great Hunger in the 1840s.
However for the purposes of the imagination, we imagine Mother Jones visiting her childhood home and streets in Shandon just before Christmas 1920 after the burning of Cork City.
Taking the lead role is actress Joan Goggin know to all as Cork’s own Mother Jones. Joan’s family, especially her Dad had an involvement in the labour/trade union movement for many years and the famous union leader Jim Larkin sometimes stayed in their house when visiting Cork.
The film also features a series of flashbacks to the 1840s where Joan is joined by her daughter Eadaoin Delaney who plays the role of Ellen Cotter, Mary Harris’s mother. Joan’s granddaughter Aoife plays a young Mary Harris skipping on the streets of Shandon.
In a remarkable twist of faith, in her soliloquy at Shandon, Mother Jones recalls her only son named Terence who was born in 1865, but who tragically died in the Memphis yellow fever epidemic in October 1867 and acknowledges Cork’s Lord Mayor Terence MacSwiney who had died a few weeks earlier in October 1920.
This short film entitled Mother Jones Returns to Shandon was filmed in and around the Streets of Shandon by Frameworks Films.
All events will be streamed by Frameworks Films for the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival 2020 and will be freely available to view by all.
Full programme of events will appear here and the Mother Jones Cork Facebook by mid-November.
The Cork Mother Jones Committee would like to extend our best wishes to all involved at the Shandon Street Festival as they prepare for their 2019 festival which takes place next Saturday, 22nd June in and around Shandon Street on Cork’s Northside. The festival runs from 1 to 6pm and will have something for all the family.
The Shandon Street Festival is in many ways a sister festival of the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival. It was with tremendous help from the Shandon Street Committee that we got off the ground in 2012 and many of the same individuals play a key role in both festivals which take place in the same area of the city.
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.
The 2018 Spirit of Mother Jones Festival 2018 starts on Wednesday, 1st August and runs until the evening of Saturday, 4th August. This year we have a new venue in addition to our now established venues at the Maldron Hotel and the Firkin Crane Theatre. That new venue is the North Cathedral Visitor Centre at the side of Cathedral of St. Mary and St. Ann on Roman Street. All three venues are within a few minutes walking distance of one another in the Shandon area just to the north of Cork city centre.
The Maldron Hotel is situated on John Redmond Street in what was formerly Cork’s historic North Infirmary hospital. All of this year’s Music events will be held in the cosy atmosphere of Bells Bar in the hotel.
The Firkin Crane Theatre is just 200 metres from theMaldron. This iconic circular building from 1855 was originally part of Cork’s historic butter market but is now used primarily as a centre for dance, especially ballet, and for other music and theatrical events. The Firkin Crane will be the venue of a number of lectures / talks during the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival 2018
The Cathedral Visitor Centre is located to the rear of Cork’s North Cathedral (Cathedral of St. Mary and St. Ann) and can be accessed from just around the corner at Roman Street. It is within 5 minutes walk of our other venues and will be the venue for many of the films and talks during the festival
How to get there:
Music at the Maldron
Among the liveliest events at the Spirit of Mother Jones festival are a lunch time series of concerts held at the Maldron Hotel each day (Wednesday to Friday 1 to 2pm) featuring some wonderful Cork singers and musicians. Organised and compered by the irrepressible Richard T Cooke, these “Music at the Maldron” sessions should not be missed. Come along and enjoy……see you there!
Lunchtime Song & Music Concerts
Richard T. Cooke MC
Wednesday, August 2nd
Muddy Lee & Shandon Street Shawlies Choir
Frances O’ Sullivan
(Traditional Singer, Cork Rokk Choir)
Clann Chorcai members:
Aoife Delaney (Young Mother Jones, Singer, Actor)
Joan Goggin (Singer, Poet, Actor)
Eadaoin Delaney (Singer, Musician, Poet, Actor)
NICHE: Sing Your Heart Out Group members:
Rose Broderick, Nuala Panek,
David McGrath (Singers)
Thursday, August 3rd
Mother Jones Ceili Band Concert & Guests
Friday, August 4th
The Jimmy Crowley Concert
Cork born, international renowned recording artist and author
performs a selection of songs from his songbook in his own quintessential Cork style.
- Admission Free
The Shandon area has been freshly spruced up thanks to the work of Shandon Tidy Towns, Shandon Area Renewal Association (S.A.R.A) and the local community. Weeds and overgrowth have been removed and fresh flowers are up at the Mother Jones plaque on John Redmond Street.
Looking good folks!
The Cork Mother Jones Committee will screen the stunning environmental film “A Plastic Ocean” at the sixth Spirit of Mother Jones festival on Thursday afternoon 3rd August 2017 at the Firkin Theatre in Shandon. While many regard tackling climate change as being vital to the survival of the planet, other threats are also accumulating in the environment.
This film investigates how the world’s increasing addiction to plastic is impacting the food chain and how that is effecting every one of us through new and developing human health problems. The results will astound viewers as the film captures never-before-seen images of marine life under threat from plastics.
A Plastic Ocean is filmed in 20 locations around the world and documents in chilling detail the effects of the some 8 million tons of plastic which we dump in the world’s oceans annually. Each year some 300 million tons of plastic are manufactured in the world, half of which we use just once before we dump it, making it one of mankind’s most destructive inventions.
The film follows documentary film maker Craig Leeson and a free diver Tanya Streeter, who while filming the blue whale, discover huge quantities of plastic floating in the waters off Sri Lanka. What follows is a global odyssey to discover what is happening in the oceans around the world.
Taking four years to film, and costing some $3.5 million the results should force people to question the plastic pathway and urge industry and all of us users to seek safe alternative solutions.
The evidence of plastic pollution which the film makers found shocked them and made them question a world where plastic is everywhere, yet few question why we produce so much, use so much and where it goes when discarded. The build-up of micro plastics and the creation of ocean garbage patches places the viability of the world’s oceans to sustain life under huge pressure.
The ratio of plastic to plankton in the Mediterranean Sea is 1:2, in some places the small plastic particles outnumber plankton by a ratio of 26:1. A large amount of discarded plastic carries toxic chemicals such as BPA, phthalates, pesticides and PCBs. Over 90% of seabirds worldwide have plastic pieces in their stomachs. If this trend continues, and with studies showing that plastic is entering the food chains, then what is the future for human health and our very planet?
Plastics are created from the oil hydrocarbons and one solution would be to return plastics to oil. The search for bacteria to break plastic molecules down continues but the oceans or indeed the earth are not able to do so. Some proposed solutions such as incineration create many toxic and poisonous emissions to the environment. Have the plastic manufacturers any real answers to safeguarding the environment from their products?
Plastic Oceans is a global network of independent not for profits and charitable organisations, united in their aim to change the world’s attitude towards plastic within a generation.
“A Plastic Ocean” will be screened on Thursday afternoon 3rd August at the Firkin Theatre in Shandon as a contribution to an “Environment Day” at the Spirit of Mother Jones festival. Discussion to follow. All are welcome. Further lectures on environmental issues will be announced shortly.
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.