Peggy Hogan (O’Grady)

Interview by Tomás Mac Conmara on August 28, 2010

Gender: Female

Birth date: 1925

Area: East Clare - Annagh (Ed Kiltannon)

Parish: Feakle

Report date: April 1, 2011

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Time Description
0:00:00 - 0:05:30 File 1 CHILDHOOD/FAMILY - Peggy lives in Annagh, Feakle were she was born in on 23rd June 1925, the day of the Spancil Hill Fair. She lived on a farm divided between two brothers. They also had land in Ballynahinch. There are clocks in both farmhouses bought by her great-grandfather John O'Grady. She remembers her grandfather John O'Grady singing 'Grandad sat at evenfall, 'neath the dear old garden wall' (song is 'Just like the Ivy I'll Cling to You'). Peggy then sings this song. Mother was Minnie Millane, father was Rodger O'Grady. They were married in Kilmore Church, Limerick.
0:05:31 - 0:14:23 WAKES/FUNERALS - Peggy remembers her grandad's wake when she was four (1929). She describes how the corpse was laid out and how the mourners would take snuff and smoke clay pipes. She goes on to describe the other customs of wakes and funerals in her time and in her father's time. She says that Mrs Murphy from Annaghneal, Feakle often laid out the bodies and that there were were two undertakers in Feakle - Moloneys and Loughnanes
0:00:00 - 0:05:04 File 2 WAKES/FUNERALS CONT. - Peggy says that all the people around that area are buried in Kilnoe graveyard. She talks about the work of the gravediggers and tells a story of man tying a cord to a corpse's toe for a joke.
0:05:04 - 0:05:51 CLAY PIPES - Tomás asks Peggy if she has heard of clay pipes being referred to as dúidíns and she says that she has. She adds that the grip on a scythe is known as a dúirnín.
0:05:51 - 0:10:28 SCHOOL - Peggy recalls her first day at Annaghneal school. Mrs McDonagh (married to Dr McDonagh) was the principal and Pappy Callaghan's wife, Miss Campbell, was the assistant. She lists the subject she did and said she learnt songs such as 'Oró Sé do Bheath Abhaile'. Her favourite subject was acting.
0:10:28 - 0:13:40 FEAKLE DRAMATIC SOCIETY - While at school Peggy was in a play about Biddy Early called 'Port an Creideamh,' (The Power of Faith). John Smith from Scariff was a great actor in it. She remembers performing in the Drama Festival in Scariff. When she was 16 or 17 she was in the Feakle Dramatic Society and they won a cup in Taibhdhearc na Gaillimhe and they also performed in the Mansion House in Dublin.
0:13:40 - 0:16:15 BIDDY EARLY - She'd heard that Biddy Early ruined the young lads by giving them drink. Her grandfather would have known Biddy Early. She tells the story of an uncle of her mothers, (from Ballyfinnan, Limerick), travelling to Feakle to get a cure from Biddy.
0:16:15 - 0:21:40 CURES - Peggy talks about some of the cures the locals had, such as a rub for ringworm, and a shrub boiled for jaundice. Peggy mentions that Sheedy in Glendree had a cure for ringworm and Tomás points out that Lyons, a blacksmith in Mountshannon, also had a cure for this. She also describes a cure her father had for worms in calves, using fish with soot and salt and they would also give the calves linseed oil. If a cow was down with milk fever they would sent for Den Cudmore in Bodyke and he would pump air into her.
0:21:40 - 0:24:23 AILMENTS - Peggy talks about some common ailments i.e. pain in the head or stomach and the cures for them. She says that Epson Salts or Glauber's Salts were used. Cobwebs were used to stop blood She says that people were reluctant to go to the doctor.
0:24:23 - 0:44:40 HOLIDAY CUSTOMS AND TRADITIONS - Peggy describes how various holidays in the year were celebrated. She talks of May Eve, St Martin's Day, Halloween, November Eve and Christmas. On May Eve they shook the Easter Holy Water over the four corners of the farm so that the women who had 'Pisogues' wouldn't be able to curse the farm. She tells a story about butter turning to froth in a churn and Fr. McInerney from Feakle was brought to say mass and then the butter returned. She says that on St Martin's Day (or eve) a cock was killed at the fireplace and the blood mixed with ashes and sprinkled at the door. They never threshed on this day. On November eve and night a candle was lit in the window for the souls. Peggy is very descriptive of her family's celebration of Christmas, giving accounts of the preparation of the house, food etc and the celebration of the day. She said that Mrs Kearns in Feakle sold sweets - 10 for a penny. Peggy says she never went on the 'wran' on St. Stephen's Day but she remembers her daughter and others, such as Mico Doyle and Mick Hayes, being stopped by the Guards while on the 'wran' and Dr Bill helped them. Her first memories of this day were a crowd of men on horseback collecting for the hurling club.
0:44:40 - 0:52:16 HURLING AND THE SCARIFF/FEAKLE RIVALRY - Peggy talks about the rivalry that existed between Scariff and Feakle, in their hurling teams and supporters and also in the drama. Her husband Bill Hogan played hurling for Clare. Her father hurled in Newmarket with Canon Hamilton.
0:52:16 - 54:23 BLACK AND TANS - Tomás asks Peggy if her father remembered the Black and Tans and she replies she didn't hear much about them, except Tuohy's house in Dromore was set alight by them.
0:00:00 - 0:05:00 File 3 ELECTRIFICATION - Peggy tells Tomás that the people of Feakle got electricity the same year the factory came to Scariff, (1959). Poles were brought by horses. Her father was unsure about it. She describes the day they got the electricity in and how everything in the house looked dirty. John Burns sold televisions in Tulla and they bought an electric radio from him.
0:00:00 - 0:05:02 File 4 ELECTRIFICATION AND TELEPHONE - Peggy says they bought an iron and kettle from a man called Ryan who worked for the ESB in Scariff. Her father didn't take to the kettle as he said he could taste the electricity. After that they got the water in and then the telephone and her father couldn't understand this either. She describes how they managed before electricity.
0:05:02 - 0:07:25 WASHING - Peggy describes how washing was done by her mother's generation. She explains how she saw an aunt of her grandfather, Susan O' Grady, 'bittle' rough cotton sheets with a pounder.
0:07:25 - 0:11:31 LANGUAGE - Peggy remembers an aunt of T.J Hogan from a family known as the 'County Fitzgeralds' who smoked a pipe. She lists out a few Irish words that she remembers such as 'a buachán' and 'griosach'.
0:11:31 - 0:16:06 THE FEAKLE GOLD FIND - Peggy relates the story of a girl called Bála Mac who found a stone with gold writing on it. The writing said there was gold under the stone and that seven men would have to find it and one of them would die. She remembers Paddy Malley finding a gold collar in 1948. She says he also found a sword.
0:16:06 - 0:21:42 CUAIRT - Peggy describes people going 'an cuaird'. She says that her family would often have people in their house. She speaks of a sibín selling poitín near her house, run by Molly Keane. There was also poitín made at the crag by Keoghs. She also says that one day she found Martin Rochford lost on the crag.
0:21:42 - 0:25:22 THE BANSHEE - Peggy says that Banshee was supposed to cry when the O'Grady's died. She remembers hearing a mysterious knock at the door when her mother died.
0:25:22 - 0:27:48 LOCAL DANCES - Peggy remembers her friend Peggy Fitz being stopped by a Guard in Tulla for having no lights on her bicycle. Dances were in Tuamgraney Hall, The Astor Ballroom in Scariff and Killanena. She also speaks of dancing in the marquee in Feakle.
0:27:48 - 0:32:03 BIGGEST CHANGE - Peggy believes that the biggest change she has seen over her life is the coming of electricity and the telephone.

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