Thomas D’Arcy McGee Summer School

The year 2017 marks the 150th anniversary of Confederation in Canada and of a Fenian Rising in Ireland. Thomas D’Arcy McGee was deeply involved in both events — as a Father of Confederation, and as an implacable opponent of Fenianism.

Canadian Confederation, he believed, could provide a model for Ireland that would undercut Fenian revolutionaries and pave the way for Irish home rule.

 This year’s D’Arcy McGee Summer School explores the hidden connections between constitutional change in Canada and revolutionary movements in Ireland, and their significance for both countries (D. Wilson, 2016). Leading Canadian and Irish historians, academics, community activists and politicians will engage in debate on these issues, as relevant today they were in 1867.

The 2017 Summer School special guest, General John de Chastelain, former Chairman of the Independent International Commission on Decommissioning, was one of the key players in the confidence-building process that led to the Good Friday Agreement in 1998.

An entertaining and informative complementary social programme is a popular feature of the Summer School.

This includes the use of the local courthouse to stage a dramatic enactment of the Trail of the Orange Order, following the hugely successful run of The Trial of Pádraig Pearse in 2016.

Gerry O’Connor and Colum Sands will provide a riveting mix of song, traditional music and craic at the Irish Canadian Folk night.


Priority bookings for the courtroom drama are designated to those attending two or more sessions at the summer school. Anyone not attending the summer school, and wishing to reserve a place can do so, and will be notified if places become available, on Monday, 21st August.


21 Aug 2017 - 23 Aug 2017


8:00 AM - 6:00 PM



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