Annie Hall

Interview by Edel Greene on August 18, 2009

Gender: Female

Area: East Clare - Whitegate

Report date: September 19, 2015

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Time Description
0:00:00 - 0:07:16 EARLY LIFE - Annie starts off by talking about how she would walk to Lakyle school. When someone was doing their Leaving Cert they would have to attend a school in Scariff. Annie says that she was born in 1921 and only had one brother who was younger. Her father died when she was only 4 years old but she can remember him getting sick. She states here that she is anaemic and she talks about this condition briefly. Her mother's maiden name was Tracey. Her grandparents lived in the neighbouring farm and when her father passed away they helped out on the land. At the time of the wake they were still living a thatched house. Both her brother and she weren't allowed to attend the funeral as they were too young.
0:07:17 - 0:10:35 SCHOOL - Annie attended Ballinasloe as a boarder. She says that she didn't enjoy her time there even though she got on with the nuns. She describes them as being very strict. The reason why she was sent to be a boarder was because her grandmother wanted nuns and priests in the family. Annie talks about the two priests that were in the family. One of them caught a bug and passed away. The same man was ordained in Rome and Annie attended the ceremony. Annie left Lakyle school when she was 11 to attend Ballinasloe Boarding School which she left when she was 18 to go to England.
0:10:36 - 0:14:22 FARM LIFE - Annie's mother worked very hard growing her own vegetables. Neighbours and family members would give her a hand with the sowing. Annie talks about one of her aunts who died of TB. There was no electricity while Annie was growing up. Annie's mother liked to visit neighbours in the evening where they would tell different kinds of stories. While growing up, Annie was given different chores to do around the farm which were to be done after school.
0:14:23 - 0:19:19 NURSING IN ENGLAND AND WORLD WAR II - Annie answered an advert when she was finished in Ballinasloe. The advert was calling out for workers in different hospitals across England. She then spent the next four years training to become a nurse. During World War II, lots of casualties of the war would come into the hospital she was working in. Annie was in England when war was declared and she can remember when she heard the news. She was attending Sunday mass when the priest announced that 'We are at war with Germany'. After war was declared, a lot of Irish left England for home but Annie stayed. She later met her husband and had four children. She talks about her bother that never helped out on the farm so her mother decided to move over to Annie in England. She stayed with her until she was 60, which was when she returned home.
0:19:20 - 0:20:19 THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE - Annie says that she was told that the Black and Tans searched her family's house when she was a baby. She says that there is a 106 year old man, called Paddy Gleeson, living in Raheen who is very knowledgeable on the topic.
0:20:20 - 0:21:16 SEASONAL CUSTOMS - Annie says that they would play different games with their neighbours on May Eve.
0:21:17 - 0:24:01 FOLKLORE - Annie says that there was a very strong belief in fairies while she was growing up. Annie never heard any stories about the Banshee. There were several houses around the area that were believed to be haunted.
0:24:02 - 0:28:47 LIVING IN ENGLAND - Everybody liked to play cards so this was commonly done while Annie was growing up. Annie talks about returning to Ireland and her daily routine. The Irish living in England while Annie was there were given a very hard time. She says that building sites would have signs up saying 'no Irish need apply'. There was a very strong Irish community in Coventry which was where Annie lived. They would be dances held frequently.

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