Cork Lord Mayor Terence MacSwiney’s Hunger Strike 12th of August 1920 – 25th October 1920
100 years ago today …
73 days since Lord Mayor Terence MacSwiney began his hunger strike on the day of his arrest in Cork City Hall.
1 day until Lord Mayor Terence MacSwiney dies on hunger strike in Brixton Prison, London.
Battle for survival and Independence starts again 100 years on in Independence Museum Kilmurry
Due to these unprecedented times the battle for survival begins for many organisations within
Ireland. Independence Museum Kilmurry’s(IMK) life has been turned upside down in recent months.
Now begins a new way in which organisations have to learn, adapt and react. For many
organisations like the museum, our main source of revenue pre Covid 19 was from gatherings of
people i.e. fundraising concerts, evening classes and lectures. These were the main fundraising
events that were to the core of running and maintaining the museum and community room within
IMK. With the outbreak of Covid 19, these events ceased due to the restrictions on public
gatherings. A museum might not be the top of the list of peoples priorities at the start of the
pandemic. But now begins the battle for survival.
So we begin to make tiny steps into the light and hopefully return to some sort of normality.
Firstly we plan on having a field trip to a famine graveyard in Gurranreigh on Sunday 26 th July. A
village simply disappeared during the famine in which hundreds of people lost their lives. We also
plan on hosting a vintage car run on August 16 th starting in Kilmurry village and visiting historic
landmarks Crossbarry, Upton, Dripsey, Inchigeela. If that is well attended we plan to have another
interesting field trip in September. In August we will host an exhibition on the 100 th anniversary of
Lissarda ambush in which local Irish Volunteer Michael Galvin was fatally wounded. There will also
be a book launch which Mary O’ Mahony has worked tirelessly to put together with the help of a
hard working committee. In October we hope to host the 100 th anniversary of Terence MacSwiney’s
death, where he died on hunger strike in search for Irish freedom and Independence. There will also
be a hunger strike exhibition honouring the hunger strikers who went on hunger strike during the
struggle for Independence.
As an organisation our main goal is to preserve and protect historical and archaeological sites and
artefacts. We hold a large range of items in our collection at the museum. We hope to start a journal
on the historical sites and place names in Kilmurry parish.
The above events will hope to honour our fallen heroes, who fought so bravely for Irish
Independence. And when we look to the countries to the right and left of us during Covid 19. We
thank our lucky stars that we gained independence 100 years ago. So please keep our museum in
the middle of Rebel Cork in your hearts and thoughts in the weeks and months ahead. Our museum
is open Thurs-Sun 2pm-5pm and the community room can be booked for classes like yoga, Pilates
and art etc. All our events will be advertised on Facebook and on www.kilmurrymuseum.ie. Our
museum showcases the revolutionary period, it covers materials from Kilmichael ambush , Beal Na
Blath, Lissarda ambush and Terence MacSwiney. The Atlas of the Irish Revolution is currently on
display at Independence Museum Kilmurry.
Public safety is of the utmost importance to us, so the museum reopens with careful adherence to
government Covid 19 guidelines. Accordingly , stringent social distancing and sanitisation measures
will be in place to ensure the safest environment possible for our visitors.
Michael John O’Mahony, Kilmurry Historical & Archaeological Association