The 2014 lecture programme of the Old Drogheda Society opens in spectacular fashion on Wednesday 15th January when the Society presents Who Fears to Wear the Red Hand Badge? an illustrated talk about the Great Dublin Lock-Out of 1913, its local impact and its aftermath.
The lecture will be held in the Governor’s House, Millmount, at 8 p.m.
Francis Devine, the acclaimed labour historian, author, poet and singer and his colleague, Fergus Russell, will tell the story of the Lock-Out through the songs and stories of the time, accompanied by fascinating contemporary images. Francis, often called “Renaissance Man”, because of his accomplishments in such a wide variety of activities, is well known in Drogheda and his previous presentations have been a great success. He has collected the contemporary songs and poems relating to the dispute. And the singing of these songs, most of which have not been heard for a century, will bring the events of Dublin city and county vividly to life.
No mere academic exercise, this event will add greatly to our understanding of the period – a decade that laid the foundations for modern Ireland.
Representatives of the Millmount Research Unit will complement this exciting material with a parallel presentation on the reporting of the dispute in the local newspapers at the time. Although Drogheda itself was not directly involved in the cataclysmic events in the capital city, the story of the struggle of the farm labourers of North County Dublin for union recognition and for better wages and conditions cannot be separated from the better known events in Dublin.
As well as telling this story in detail, the presentation will also deal with the conflict within the communities of North Dublin, the response of the Church to the industrial unrest and the political developments arising from the dispute that prepared the way for a refocusing on the National Question and opened the path to the 1916 Rising.
This is a public lecture and all are welcome. There will be a book stall open on the night