A FRENCH born archivist with a passionate interest in the 1916 to 1923 revolutionary period gave history enthusiasts an insight into the era at an informative lecture in Offaly History Centre, Tullamore recently.
Cécile Gordon, Senior Archivist and Project Manager of the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Project in the Military Archives of Ireland, gave an overview of the records available in MSPC for Offaly and illustrated how they interconnect.
There is a rich collection of material relating to Offaly for the period and Cécile concentrated on the IRA Brigade Activity Reports for Offaly Brigades.
A selection of some of the most interesting pension cases was presented with a focus on newly catalogued records and claims lodged by the women involved in the independence movement in Offaly.
The MSP Project is a Government initiative led by the Department of Defence and supported by the Defence Forces. It contains around 250,000 unique records covering the period of the Irish struggle for Independence. The Project’s core mission concerns the preservation of the material and the provision of access to this major primary source.
Cécile has been involved in the MSP Project since its inception (2008) and prior to her current position, she worked as a Local Authority Archivist for counties Meath, Kildare and Wicklow.
Her areas of interest include archival theory, the impact of the work of the archivist on the use of archives and the connection between archives, commemorations, collective memories and individual identity building.
The lecture formed part of county Offaly’s Decade of Centenaries programme.