By Dan Walsh
The memoirs of Miles Byrne (1780-1862) from Monaseed in North Wexford are the inspiration for a new publication called UNITED IRISHMEN – Émigrés of Erin by Colum Ó Ruairc and Stephen McCracken just published.
“I read the memoirs of Miles Byrne and saw a lot of names of casualties recorded on memorials and monuments across Wexford, Wicklow and Carlow but never seen them in any book form or celebrated or commemorated in any way,” Colum Ó Ruairc told WexfordLocal.com, who added; “I looked at the casualties of the rebellion period, not just insurgents, but yeomen, loyalists, the French soldiers, the Crown soldiers and civilians with no politics attached.”
Colum has accumulated about 3,500 casualties so far, through the various archives, and he is hopeful that this book will be the first of a trilogy and he expects the work will be of benefit for genealogists and researchers.
The publication is full of mini biographies with plenty of photographs, monochrome and colour, and is an invaluable addition to anybody with an interest in the 1798 Rbellion
Colum Ó Ruairc grew up immersed in the story of the 1798 story in south Co. Wicklow and in July 2017, he established the 1798 Rebellion Casualty Database, with the aim of collecting the names of casualties from the 1798-1803 period.
These casualties include those from the Insurgency, Crown Forces, loyalist civilians and Yeomanry, French soldiers and apolitical. He is also in the process of compiling a database of those who were ordered to be transported to New South Wales 1799-1805 and those impressed into the Crown Forces.
After moving to Antrim 10 years ago historian Stephen McCracken knew he would have to research the United Irishmen. Titles already published by Stephen include The Presbyterians of Magilligan Ancestry Guide 1600-1900 and The Plantation of Ulster Haberdashers/Aghanloo Ancestry Records and The Battle of Antrim The Story of 1798.
UNITED IRISHMEN Émigrés of Erin by McCracken and Ó Ruairc, illustrated, 270 pages, Springfarm Publishing. ISBN 978-1-9162576-9-6