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Irish Life and Lore opens digital treasure trove

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Historian Maurice O’Keeffe of Irish Life and Lore compiling another podcast at his studio

Historian Maurice O’Keeffe of Irish Life and Lore compiling another podcast at his studio

Historian Maurice O’Keeffe of Irish Life and Lore compiling another podcast at his studio

From life on the old railways to the War of Independence and the high society of the Big House, few key aspects of the modern history of Kerry have been left out, as ever, from the latest offering of Irish Life and Lore.

But this time historian couple Maurice and Jane O'Keeffe are delivering their work in a series of fascinating podcasts under the Irish Life and Lore brand online.

Fans of historic Ireland can simply access the podcasts -for free - from their preferred podcast source and download away for their listening pleasure.

The Covid-19 lockdown finally gave Maurice and Jane a chance to trawl their impressive archive of oral history to being putting the individual podcasts together.

"We've begun to produce podcasts using recordings from our archive of over 4,000 oral history recordings," they explained this week.

"Sound clips from recordings in many of the Irish Life and Lore oral history collections can be heard and each podcast is approximately an hour in duration."

It's amazing what can be squeezed into an hour. Among the episodes already made available are Irish War of Independence - Bloody Sunday, complete with eyewitness accounts of the 1920 slaughter in Croke Park; The Kilmichael Ambush featuring the testimony of West Cork Flying Column member Dan Donovan; Michael Collins - The Treaty and Béal na mBláth Ambush; the Kilmorna Visitors Book detailing the many fascinating personalities who paid visits to the big house of North Kerry and complete with interviews with local historians as well as descendants of the Mahony family who once held court there; the lives of Irish Racing People; The Civil War in Kerry and much, much more.

Just added to the series this week is the episode Links to the Great Irish Potato Famine featuring interviews with people just a few generations removed from the devastation.

Kerryman