Kenmare: History and Survival
Fr John O’Sullivan and the Famine Poor
This is the story of a remarkable man’s efforts to help starving people during the Irish Great Famine. It reveals their terrible experiences inside and outside one of the national ‘workhouses’ and throws new light on the relationship between class, religion and poverty in Ireland before independence. John O’Sullivan (1807-1874) was an independent-minded priest who clashed with bishops and landlords. He kept journals that have not been published. The author mines these and other sources, including eyewitness accounts, UK archives and Kerry’s workhouse minutes, for new insights into aspects of Irish society, including politics, proselytism and the status of women.
Dr Colum Kenny BL is Professor Emeritus, Dublin City University, a journalist and an honorary bencher of King’s Inns. Awarded the Irish Legal History Society’s Gold Medal, his books include histories of King’s Inns, an account of Irish emigration to the USA and, most recently, a biography of Arthur Griffith.