Tim’s col­lec­tion on those who fought for the cause

The Kerryman (South Kerry Edition) - - NEWS - By TADHG EVANS

IT was by no means a fast process but very much a labour of love for Tim Hor­gan, who re­cently launched his book, ‘Fight­ing for the Cause’ , which pro­vides an­other source of in­for­ma­tion on Kerry’s part in the fight for in­de­pen­dence.

Pro­vid­ing an ac­count of some fas­ci­nat­ing, un­told sto­ries of Kerry men and women who took up the Repub­li­can cause, the al­most 400-page fi­nal prod­uct is the lat­est project by the re­spected Tralee his­to­rian.

Among the sto­ries in­cluded those of fe­nian Jerry O’Sul­li­van, who at­tempted to free two pris­on­ers from Clerken­well in 1867 by blow­ing up a prison wall; John Cronin, whose at­tacks on Bri­tish forces in 1920 were con­sid­ered au­da­cious even by his own brigade; and Brid­get Glee­son and Nora Bros­nan, both in­car­cer­ated for their repub­li­can acts.

The book had its launch ear­lier this month at The Pavil­ion at Bal­ly­garry Ho­tel, Tralee, and Mr Hor­gan’s in­ter­est in these top­ics ties in with his fam­ily his­tory.

His grand­mother, Madge Clif­ford, was a sec­re­tary to both Ernie O’Mal­ley.

He pre­vi­ously au­thored ‘Dy­ing for the Cause’ and was co-edi­tor of ‘The Men Will Talk To Me: Kerry In­ter­views by Ernie O’Mal­ley’.

“I be­gan re­search­ing this book in 2015,” he told The Ker­rman.

“While ac­cu­mu­lat­ing ma­te­rial for that book, it be­came ap­par­ent that there were many men and women who con­trib­uted sig­nif­i­cantly to Ire­land’s fight for in­de­pen­dence and that over time had been for­got­ten by the peo­ple of this county.

“This, I con­sid­ered to be some­what of an in­jus­tice to their mem­o­ries and in­deed a deficit in the her­itage that we hand on to fu­ture gen­er­a­tions.”

As an opthal­moligist in Tralee since the mid-’90s, Mr Hor­gan said he has met many thou­sands of peo­ple, many of whom shared sto­ries of their fam­ily mem­bers who lived through and were in­volved in events dur­ing the the 1916 to 1923 pe­riod.

This, he feels, was an in­valu­able help to his work.

“With­out such as­sis­tance, my re­search could never have re­sulted in this book which I hope will also be a source of his­tory for fu­ture gen­er­a­tions.

“The book fea­tures not only men but also the sto­ries of four for­got­ten women that shaped our coun­ties his­tory.

“Also de­scribed is the re­mark­able life of Fr Joe Breen, a rebel priest for whom the GAA field in Ken­mare is called, but about whom the pre­sent gen­er­a­tion will know lit­tle or noth­ing.

At a cost €19.99, ‘Fight­ing for the Cause’ is avail­able in all good book stores na­tion­wide and on­line.

Tim Hor­gan

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