About This Blog

Greetings, For the last four months I have been writing a blog about our four months in Galway Ireland.  I started the blog just to have a record of our daily activities while we were there but then people started saying they enjoyed reading about it so I worked at making it more available to people.

I am a retired 70 year old who lives in New York.  I worked in the substance abuse field for over 20 years and retired at age 67.  I loved the work and have continued volunteering in my own community with a coalition who has been working to make life better in our community for over 30 years. My husband is in a second career as a college professor teaching American History at a small upstate NY college.  We have a good life.

Grandchildren are the lights of our lives although we don’t see them a lot because they live 7 hours away.  Canada is our second home where we have restored a stone school house on my gr grandfathers property. It is a lovely place and we open it up to the public several times per year.  We spend about 4 months a year there if we are lucky.  I have lots of family who live near by and we have wonderful neighbors who keep an eye on our home when we are not there and also are great friends when we are there.

So, based on feedback from others and my own desire to continue writing every day I have started this new blog. It won’t be filled with wonderful pictures of Ireland but I think there is enough going on in life to write about. Events, beliefs,philosophy etc will be shared. I also do a lot of genealogy and transcription of family documents so might be sharing some of that information here as well. Recently WWII and the Canadian Army have been of interest to me because two of my aunts were involved in the medical end. One in England and the other right behind the front lines as the troops ran the Germans out of France, Belgium, and the Netherlands.  It is quite a lovely story with excitement, love, and war.  I know it sounds strange to say “lovely” but the truth is my aunt loved life and found a way to turn every bombing into an adventure. It seems little scared her. So you will learn about her as well.

So, if you choose to follow this, great and if you find it dull and boring please feel free to tell me. It will be written as I speak and as I am. During my time in Ireland I realized that if you view every day as an adventure you will find something to write about.

Thanks, Marg

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32 thoughts on “About This Blog”

  1. Dear Margaret, I had a good lively time over Christmas in Hampshire although last Saturday I lost my voice (laryngitis) it is coming back gradually. Travelling home with Ian and Tess his car broke down with a serious problem and he couldn’t get through to his rescue services. We contacted a roadside garage who agreed to repair it. So a taxi and 3 trains finally got us home. He will reverse the journey when it is done. Like you, I looked upon it as an adventure but I don’t think Tessa did! Happy new year xx. Will enjoy your new blog

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  2. Very interesting and being Norman Laughland’s son Peter who still lives in Southampton I do like to see the old pictures of great grandfather. I have the family group picture outside the Cavendish avenue house and the picture of my father, brothers and grandfather in uniform. The picture was taken as my father was about the leave the country and was the only one in regular army uniform. As the other are home guard at that time.

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    1. Peter, do you remember meeting me back in the 60’s??! I saw Pam the last time I was visiting with Gill and Phillip. Check out my postings in April, they are about both sides of my faimly.. Email me at margiebren@hotmail.com. I can send you some of the pictures I have on my other computer.

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  3. hello from Malvern in Worcestershire, U.K. I am trying to find out about Robert Laughland, who stayed in Malvern during the 1950s. I believe he was a corporal in the Royal Engineers based at Merebrook Camp. he was aprox 23 years of age in 1953 and visited my parents Edna and Christopher Fish when I was a small child. I believe he was my father. my name before adoption was Jeannie. My mother was Annie Pimlott. I would love to hear any little snippet about him, and a photo would be wonderful;. thanks Christine

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  4. Fascinated by your picture of Rev Laughland and Bob Tissyman in the dock after the Walker Gallery incident. Did this come to you through the family? regards Simon Partridge

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    1. Yes we have pictures and news articles. What is your connection? My grandfather was quite and interesting man. I have letters from all kinds of political people from when the family went back to Canada.

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    1. You might be interested in some of the things I have at home. Will see when I get back what I can find about your g grandfather. What as his name? Might even have an original letter from him.

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  5. I’m interested in all the events in Liverpool at that time. I’d be really interested in hearing your grandfather’s story. Why he came over to Liverpool what he thought about the Walker Art Gallery event etc. My ggfather was William Smith. He was secretary of the Liverpool Labour party in 1921.

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    1. I just went through the letters again and the only Smith is Spencer Smith. I think because most of the letters are from 1923 and 24 when he was leaving or running for office that maybe your gr grand dad did not write to him or that letter was lost. You might know some of the other names,
      Jennie Mooney = LIverpool Independent Labour Party
      A Dan Thomas = Bank Officers Guild
      Arthur Henderson – The Labour Party, London. I think this was the older Arthur Henderson who was a Nobel Lauriate Poet in the 1930’s
      J Fleming Shearer, Devedale Road Baptish Church – Liverpool
      George Lansbury MP – London
      Ellen Wilkinson = Manchester MP
      Katherine Glasier – ILP, National Organizer
      CT Cramp = National Union of Railwaymen
      WAlter McLennan Citrine = labour leader
      JOsiah C Wedgwood – Labour leader

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      1. Hi Margie,

        Citrine and Henderson I know a bit about and would be interested to read their letters. Citrine became the leader of the TUC and was a backer of the police strikers and from Liverpool also I think. Henderson became the Home Secretary. He ran into trouble with the strikers when upon getting elected the Labour government didn’t reinstated the strikers as some had hoped. This made him unpopular in certain parts of Liverpool. Did Rev. Laughland live in Liverpool and if so when? (Sorry I should know this!)

        Best
        Simon

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  6. When I get home next week I will look for info on your ggrandfather. I am sure I should have something in the book of letters. We get home late on the 10th. So give me a couple of days.

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      1. I went through the book and have not found anything yet. There is more to look at so will continue to search. Do you know if he went to the Pembroke Chapel? Do you have any other names? Will let you know if I find anything.

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    1. Hi Margie and thanks for your message,

      Bob Tissyman would be another name that should be mentioned in there. Possibly Ma Bamber as well. I think 1921 would be a good time to look around.

      William Smith was known to friends as Bill if that helps
      Thanks for your time. Simon

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      1. Hi Margie,

        Citrine and Henderson I know a bit about and would be interested to read their letters. Citrine became the leader of the TUC and was a backer of the police strikers and from Liverpool also I think. Henderson became the Home Secretary. He ran into trouble with the strikers when upon getting elected the Labour government didn’t reinstated the strikers as some had hoped. This made him unpopular in certain parts of Liverpool. Did Rev. Laughland live in Liverpool and if so when? (Sorry I should know this!)

        Best
        Simon

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  7. I found this blog by accident while searching my great great grandfather Harry Bevens. I realize that i met you when i stopped at the school house when i dropped off a picture from the 30’s when my grandfather went there.
    Since then which i think was several years back i have discovered art that my grandfather did as well as when he was there.
    Harry Bevens was my Grandfathers grandfather. I have recently started working on the family tree and found Harrys name in with the Connors.
    I am going to drop out this summer with some more pics for you.

    Thank you for posting the diary, i am elated to see my familys name in there.
    Shannon Griffin

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    1. Nice to hear from you. The school house is progressing. We will be there most of the summer and I will be up for Doors Open Ontario weekend and the school house will be open.. looking forward to seeing you again.

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    1. Sure, okay with me. I am sure the others would be okay with it as well. I just got over 100 additional pages of letters on James Vint from the Harvard Theological College. He was ousted from the Unitarians and they would not let him back in. Very interesting addition to the family history. I think it could probably make for an interesting book for someone. Such a man of passion who suffered enormously from speaking up on his beliefs. I get some insight into my dad from reading the letters. What a tough life the boys and my grandmother must have had.

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  8. Hi Margaret, I was doing some research on my Great Grandmother, Julia O’Connor Ivey (Iven) Hughes and ran across your April 10, 2015 “I IS FOR THE IVEY (IVEN) FAMILY” post. In that post you mentioned a letter from Julia in which, after Patrick Ivey had returned, from supposedly being dead, after she had married my great grandfather John Hughes and had given birth to my grandmother Grace Hughes Nugent, “said that the bishop told her that she could continue to live with John Hughes but they could no longer live as man and wife.” I would appreciate it if you could share a scanned (or even a photograph) copy of that letter. In my spare time I have been try to research my great grandmother and Patrick Ivey especially his habit of frequent marriages. My sister, Janet, and I met you at the O’Connor-Trainor Family Reunion in Landsdowne in 2006.
    Thank you,
    Chuck Nugent

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    1. Send me your info address etc at my email, margiebren@hotmail.com and when I get home from Canada I will send the letter to you. You guys should have all of Julia’s letters. I am putting a lot of the items I have in the archives up here but that would be up to you. It is great stuff in terms of family history. I just spent today with one of the Joanna O’Connor Slack descendants and they were able to ID so many of the pictures I could not ID before. And in that area I have pictures of Charles Iven the son from the first marriage etc. you guys might want those as well because he sent letter and pictures etc. email me at margiebren@hotmail.com

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