The much anticipated latest edition of Teathbha, the Journal of County Longford Historical Society, was launched in Longford Library on Monday, December 9.
The launch was performed by Joe Flaherty, Managing Director of the Longford Leader , who stood in at the last minute to replace RTEâ€™s Fran McNulty who was sent out to South Africa to cover Nelson Mandelaâ€™s funeral.
This is the thirteenth edition of Teathbha, and the fifth since James MacNerney became its editor.
Running to over 100 pages, the journal contains a feast for those with even a curiosity about Longfordâ€™s history.
There are many famous people with Longford connections and many others not so famous, whose lives are examined in Teathbha.
Among the personalities covered are Fred Brady-Browne; Jamie Kelly, who proved that Winston Churchillâ€™s mother had been born in Brooklyn; Michael Francis MacNerney, a distinguished fiddler (and father of the journalâ€™s editor); Joan Walsh; General Sir Richard Oâ€™Connor; and SeÃ¡n MacEoin.
You can also read about the â€˜tithe warâ€™ in the 1830s; Longfordâ€™s county surveyors and engineers; the ancestors of Mary Todd, wife of President Abraham Lincoln; the Fox family of Foxhall; the origins of Ballymahon; panoramic photos of the 1932 Eucharistic Congress and the first county council elections in Longford.
There are evocative pieces on curing bacon and grain growing in north Longford, not to mention the typical day of a labouring man in the 1930s.
The journal is full of history ranging from Elizabethan times through the Act of Union to more modern military figures.
It will be of great interest to readers, for instance, to examine the list of Longford people who actually supported the Act of Union in 1801 and those who sought compensation for damage to their homes or possessions after the 1798 rebellion.
In launching the journal, Joe Flaherty spoke of James MacNerneyâ€™s outstanding track record in local history.
In addition to referring to the contents of the journal, Joe spoke of the importance of local history in making Longford unique.
He emphasised the potential it has in generating tourism and referred to the obvious need for a County Museum.
In his remarks, James MacNerney thanked all of the contributors for their articles and paid tribute to Keith Millar for the quality of his design work.
He also returned to the need for a museum and noted that at present, the historical society cannot store its artefacts in Longford. Instead, it must pay for storage in a neighbouring county.
Teathbha is available from several shops throughout the county at the very reasonable price of â‚¬12 and it would be the perfect Christmas present for friends or family at home or abroad.