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Title: Oral history session with Mary McNally recorded by David Cotter in 1994
Authors: Cotter, David
Cotter, David
McNally, Mary
Keywords: Tallaght Local History
Oral History
Issue Date: 21-Nov-1994
Description: Oral history session with Mary McNally recorded by David Cotter in 1994. Subjects covered are: Born near 12th lock. Boy drowned near 12th lock so family move to Somerton. She describes her family. Castlewarden. Redmondites in WWI. Father was gassed during the war. Mother an army nurse training in Birkenhead. Father becomes a vet. Describes father's two seater car. Edward Kennedy horse breeder. Tetrarch (name of horse) in the family tree of many modern racehorses. Father used a Motorbike. Time of black and tans. Lorry approaches full of tans near saggart. At Baldonnel they pass him by towards Lucan. Schooldays... moved to Castlewarden and a teacher was brought in to teach her class after hours. Move to school in Naas. Irish Omnibus Company ran school bus. Magnet bus in Rathcoole. Competition between bus companies. GSR took over school bus service. Summer work saving hay. Cutting thistles. Noxious weeds laws. Hedge trimming and planting. Dairy farming. Difference between morning milk and evening milk. Jimmy Mahaddy worked for Smiths of Neilstown - farmers. Farm hygiene. Description of Mahaddy repairing farm machinery. Poulaphuca water scheme and labourers involved. Local woman makes a dancehall out of her hay barn for labourers. Jim Maher aka O'Meara. Paddy smith and Mahaddy formed a group known as Jazz Efex. Rathcoole Librarian allows Mary to borrow as many books as she wanted. 1933 and a Snowstorm arrives and buries local bungalow. Care of the animals during snow storm. Cattle buried in snow. Mary's mother couldn't make bread... Survived on potato cakes. No tea available during snow. Newcastle men dug out snow to allow milk to be brought to Dublin City. Local postmistress Ms Collins stuck in show in her Baby Austin takes provisions to stranded families on foot after her car gets stuck. Saggart man working on Poulaphuca scheme fills sack of groceries to distribute to locals. He dies of exposure. Circus elephants stabled nearby during snow. Mary takes Dublin County Scholarship. Moves to Kilcullen and then in 1939 works in Dublin Castle Clock Tower in tax office. Civil Service etiquette explained. First names not used. Dublin theatre actors help civil service with amateur acting as a hobby. Working days were 9.30 to 5.00. Explanation of wage structure in Civil Service. Mary is convinced to sit Civil Service promotion examination. Passes, and moves to circuit court. Deals with Uncontested and Contested Malicious Injuries claims. She talks about meeting her husband, a farmer. Michael Campbell who prepared governmental budgets was a former tenement dweller. Educated in Strand Street school. Joins Civil Service. He marries and moves to Cabra. Campbell visits Cavendish's and buys a piano but can't pay for it. Furniture is taken from the house. Civil Servants donate furniture to him. He has breakdown. A colleague accompanies him to Dublin Castle and back while he is ill. Charitable donations follow to him from staff. In the 1960s Mary moves to Tallaght and becomes treasurer of Tallaght Community Council. Describes the area and unsuccessfully looking for a community centre. Talks about Tallaght becoming a city - while having difficulty with getting Tallaght recognition as an Urban District Council. Describes only green fields from Tallaght village to Terenure. Marion Stores shop. Fortunestown Lane. Urney. Swiftbrook Mills, Killeen Mills. River Camac. Different grades of paper and cardboard made all along the Camac. Talks about tramway to Terenure. Collecting for school building in Newcastle. Horses and ponies panic because of the passing trams. Steel from the tram line was taken up and kept in storage. Used to make bullets during the Emergency (?) Explains how she became interested in history. John Shiel O'Grady plays a part. Started in Primary school when she was aged 10 with a local history class. All subjects taught through Irish then. She is asked about modern approaches to history. Talks of the Tallaght History Society. Started by Harry Taylor's wife in 1970. Cleared up the bog stream. Made newsletter. Allenton House demolished. Attempted to stop Tallaght Autoparts being built on ramparts of Fosse.
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