New museum seeks donations of artefacts

Posted on: 3rd November, 2014

Category: Features

Contributor: West Cork People

The Michael Collins House Museum, housed in a restored Georgian house on Emmet Square in Clonakilty, will tell the story of Ireland’s struggle for independence from the 1798 rebellion onwards.

The Museum is looking for donations of furniture relating to the early part of the twentieth century, circa 1900 – 1910. The project team would also be appreciative of any donations of artefacts, letters and papers relating to the three main central characters of the museum — Tadgh an Asna, O’Donovan Rossa and Michael Collins.

“The former town Council of Clonakilty and Cork County Council  have being acquiring artefacts and papers to be displayed at the House and have been fortunate in the donations they have received to date, most notably a collection of papers from relatives of Michael Collins,” said a council spokesperson.

Born in 1890 near Woodfield, Clonakilty, Michael Collins lived at No 7, Emmet Square with his sister Margaret, while attending the national school in Clonakilty. During this time, Collins worked as a young reporter at The West Cork People newspaper, which his sister and her husband Patrick O’Driscoll published from No 7. In 1906, Collins left Clonakilty for a job in the Post Office in London.

The house was used as a private residence up to 1981, when it was turned into offices for a solicitors firm. It was vacant until acquired by Clonakilty Town Council in 2012.

“The project will restore the house to former glory and will give the visitor a view of what the house was like in its Georgian splendour. Conservation work has being carried out very sympathetically and main body of the house has now being restored,” explained the spokesperson.

The house will also contain an audio visual room and a printing room, which will tell the history of The West Cork People newspaper.

The Michael Collins House Museum is part of the continuing redevelopment of Emmet Square, which acts as an important axis between the house and statue of Michael Collins just off the square.

Particular furniture pieces of interest include Lighting and Lamp Shades; Over Mantel Mirrors; Ornaments for mantelpiece; China and delph; China dinner service; Hanging portraits or landscape paintings; Grandfather clock; Hat stand; Hall table; Single bed with springs and mattress; Vertical washstand, washbowl and pitcher; Old school desk with ink well; Drawing room furniture (Fireside Chairs, Chaise Longue, etc.); Old Books; Newspapers.

If people wish to donate items on long term loan to the Museum then please contact Justin England, email justin.england@corkcoco.ie, phone 023 8833380 or Billy Houlihan phone 086 8515876.

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