Launch of Donegal Annual 2023

We are delighted to announce the publication of Donegal Annual 2023, our 75th issue of the Annual since we were founded in 1946. The Donegal Annual 2023 will be officially launched at the MacGill Summer School, on Saturday 19th August.

To mark the Decade of Centenaries, four contributors have written articles on the Irish revolution -Méadhbha Ní Bhaoill on Eithne Coyle and her contribution to the struggle for independence; Niamh Brennan has examined the role of Joseph Murray as revolutionary, garda and teacher; Caroline Carr highlights the role played by women in the period and Helen Meehan looks at the true facts of the armed struggle.

Col. Declan O’Carroll has an extensive article on the Bartons of Portsalon while William Roulston recalls the family links of the artist Paul Henry to Letterkenny. Spas were popular in the county in the past and a former President of the Society, Rev Raymond Blair delves deeply into the history of the Donegal Town spa. Myra Cavanagh looks back at the visit of Sir Charles Lewis Gieseke to the county in the 1820s on a scientific expedition while Peter Childs examines the role of the kelp industry in the county.

Brian Lacey reminds readers that the 1,400th anniversary of the birth of St Eunan will be celebrated in 2024. Professor Nollaig McCongáil highlights the role of P. T. McGinley in the Gaelic Revival. Two American historians are included too – Geoff Cobb writes about a Donegal-born sculptor who had a brilliant career in America while Tom Cannon turns to DNA in his study of names in south Donegal. Seán Browne examines the historic links to Doonan Fort with the Cannon family. Martin McGinley strikes a lively note in his article onfiddling in the Laggan. Aidan O’Hara examines place names while Anthony Begley reminds readers that this is the 175th anniversary of the Ballyshannon Orphans’ Scheme, which saw female orphans being sent to Australia. Tributes are also paid to two deceased historians, Eddie O’Kane, Lifford and Derek Fleming, Letterkenny. Seán Beattie, the editor, presents new sidelights into the history of the deserted island of Inishtrahull, which is six miles north of Malin Head, which is rich in folklore.

There are also book reviews and an excellent bibliography of recent publications in Donegal from Kevin McCaul and staff in the County Library. In a very colourful production of 160 pages, Donegal Annualis richly illustrated with photos, maps, and historic documents, some of which are previously unpublished. The Donegal Annual remains at the cutting edge of research in County Donegal and this is essential reading for everyone with an interest in the history of the county.

The Annual is on sale in local book shops or from our sales team on . Price 25 euros, postage extra.