Historian-in-Residence Appointed to Wexford Library

Wexford County Council recently appointed Barry Lacey as the first Historian in Residence with Wexford Library and Archive Service. In this role Barry will promote an awareness of the Decade of Centenaries and the collections of Wexford County Library and Archive. 

 The aim of the residency is to promote discussion of history from this period with people across the county. It aims too to raise awareness of the many resources on offer in Wexford Library and Archive to make history accessible to everyone in a manner that is informative and engaging. The intention is to create a legacy of research and cultural material for future generations. 

Barry aims to bring 1921 to life for people in Wexford using a variety of media. As part of his role as Historian in Residence, Barry would like people living in Wexford or with a Wexford connection to contact him regarding any memorabilia or documents they have belonging to their ancestors who played a part during the War of Independence or the Civil War. 

Barry Lacey has a Higher Diploma in Archaeology and a Masters in Archaeological Excavation. He has a keen interest in the War of Independence in County Wexford and has already created a website dedicated to this research. Barry has worked on Decade of Centenary projects for Wexford County Council in the past, delivering a  slideshow showcasing the various incidents that took place during the war of Independence in Wexford. In partnership with folklorist Michael Fortune, he made a short documentary, released in March 2021, highlighting a selection of events from 1920 in County Wexford. Barry has previously given lectures in Wexford libraries and writes weekly articles on War of Independence events in Wexford People newspapers. Last year he produced a report on the archaeological remains within the county relating to events that took place in 1920.

Welcoming the appointment, the Cathaoirleach of Wexford County Council, Cllr Barbara-Anne Murphy said,

“I’m delighted to welcome Barry Lacey as Historian in Residence with Wexford Library Service. These years, one hundred years ago, mark a critical time in the creation of the state. Many people played a part in the struggle for independence here in County Wexford and it is only right that their contribution is documented and the records of the time collected in their entirety so that we get to fully understand the history of the struggle for independence.”

Barry will give talks in all libraries in County Wexford to mark Heritage week in August. He will also be available to visit and meet schools, communities and to work with individuals and groups online and in-person as restrictions allow. 

This initiative is funded by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport, and Media under the Community Strand of the Decade of Centenaries 2012-2023 programme.

For more information on the work of the Historian in Residence or to make contact with Barry, please phone 053-9196330 or email libraryhq@wexfordcoco.ie

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