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In the Ould Long Ago – 26 Jan
26th January 2014 @ 7:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Jonny McKeagney spent 40 years collecting stories, events, crafts, traditions and ways of life from people around Co. Fermanagh and neighbouring Ulster counties. In the Ould Ago, published in October 2010, has won international book awards and is due to be displayed in a dozen university libraries in North America including Harvard, Notre Dame, Library of Congress in Washington, UCLA, Boston College and New York Public Libraries. Sadly Jonny passed away five weeks after publication but his youngest son Paul, will talk about his father’s work to the ILS.
… as we turn the pages and travel the roads our eyes will be opened to the wildlife and the landscape and we will begin to see ancient rocks lying in the heather and signs of tillage high on mountain side and appreciate that people lived between the now fallen gables. You could not have a better companion that Jonny McKeagney as you travel along the old roads. Séamus MacAnnaidh - Historian & Author
Though McKeagney was a self-taught historian and artist, his work was of a quality that attracted academics, many of them contributing prefaces to his works. In the foreward Críostóir Mac Cárthaigh, Archivist, National Folklore Collection, UCD writes ‘For forty years Johnny collected folklore by pen and tape recorder. He details stories and events then sketches all the salient points with a fine nib so that With the aid of camera, recording device and pen, he has pieced together much of the fabric of tradition in the places he has visited. The skills of craftsman, draughtsman and artist which he combines are used to great effect in the richly-detailed and frequently humorous tapestries he has drawn. The passion and excitement of uncovering an ancient monument, piecing together the former outline and function of a building or object, recording a distant craft process or local legend, all are vividly expressed in John McKeagney’s drawings. They form a unique and invaluable pictorial record of Fermanagh’s hidden past.’
For further interest and examples from this publication, see folklorebook