Renmore History Society

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Forthcoming Talks

Thurs 25th Sept 2014 @8pm Brian MacGabhann

100 years ago last week, in August 1914, the great powers of Europe enthusiastically marched off to war, each confident that victory would be theirs within a few short months. Four years later Europe lay exhausted and over ten million had been killed. Russia had succumbed to a communist revolution, Britain’s global position had been irrevocably weakened, Germany was economically ruined and France was finished as a world superpower. How had they gotten it so wrong? What process led each to so eagerly embrace their own destruction? How could it have happened?

Renmore Barracks or Dún uí Mhaoilíosa is the home of the first Infantry battalion (An Chead Cath) of the Irish Army. It is named in honour of the leader of the 1916 Rising in Galway, Liam Mellows. The Galway rising was the largest mobilisation outside of Dublin in Easter Week 1916, where over 600 men and women rose. Yet the story largely escapes the attention of not alone the media but state intuitions like the National Museum. NUI, Galway’s Dara Folan will give a talk on Thursday January 28th with the aim of reacquainting Galway people with the history of one of the most fascinating periods in Irish history.

Hardly known today is that most Galway city people including the people of the Claddagh organised a sspecial constabulary to aid the RIC and British Army.

Forgotten too is that the HMS Gloucester was positioned in Galway Bay to shell the countryside as a deterrent to the rebels. Not only did it terrify the rebels, it caused streams of refugees to take flight from their homes in the area form Oranmore to Castlegar. The fog of war combined with the noise and ferocity of the Gloucester’s four inch guns caused a rumour to spread that a naval battle was taking place between German U-boats and the British fleet in the bay.

Verdun Experiment

Dear Member,
Apologies for the delay in kicking off the season, which was caused by the fact that key members were abroad until today. The first talk of the season commences on Thursday the 08th Oct at 8.00 pm.

The Talk is entitled; "Bleed them White - The Verdun Experiment".

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Verdun; one of the most unique battles in military history. At ten months it is one of the longest battles ever fought, and it produced more death and destruction than almost any other engagement in history.

But it is neither the duration nor statistical record which makes Verdun unique. What makes it unique is the reasoning which lay behind it. The battle of Verdun was fought with one intention; to kill as many men as humanly possible. It had as its aim not territory, ground or tactical advantage. It had as its aim the maximisation of death.

This talk, the penultimate in the current season, will look at less celebrated Galwegians - male and female - and the legacy they left to the town. Landlords, artists, men of the cloth and others in uniform will be included in a virtual tour of the place that will be kaleidoscopic in its sweep. The richness of the town will be explored in terms of a dramatis personae that has - for the most part - been forgotten.

The presentation will also seek to show local history’s capacity to shed fresh light, through a nuanced prism, on the accepted truisms of what has been remembered - and betimes overlooked. As novelist Kazuo Ishiguro has said; in every nation there are ‘huge things that we have all agreed to leave quietly in the past.’ 

The talk will take place on Thursday the 10th March at 8.00 pm sharp. As always places are limited and must be reserved in advance. To reserve a place please click on the following link: and click on the green 'Register' button. You can then reserve your places. 

Please remember to print out or save your reservation number and bring it with you on the night, as only those with a valid reservation number can be admitted. 
We look forward to your company.