'Opening a Window on the Past' is a reflection on the lives of two extraordinary Laois women: Gertrude Lucy Maria Franks and Helen Maybury Roe.
This heritage publication by Laois historian in residence 2019/2020, Regina Dunne on Helen Roe and Lucy Franks creates awareness on the role of women in Laois and Ireland in the last century. It sheds light on the achievements and rich history of education, learning and science in Laois from the past and is available for researchers and the general public for reference and general reading.
Helen Roe (1895-1988) was born in Mountrath and educated at Trinity College, Dublin. She became the first County Librarian in Laois in 1929. She was a well-known collector of antiquarian items from around the county and delivered a series of lectures on the antiquities of Laois. By 1950 she had become one of the chief authorities in the country on pre-Christian antiquities.
Lucy Franks (1878-1964) was born in was born in Westfield, Castletown and attended Alexandra College. In 1912 she joined the United Irishwomen which has became the Irish Countrywomen's Association (ICA) in 1935 and was president of the ICA from 1942 to 1952.
The publication is available in libraries and bookshops across Laois in September 2021.
Image Credit: Alf Harvey
Launch of publication with Laois Co. Council Cathaoirleach Cllr Conor Bergin, author Regina Dunne and Chair Heritage Council of Ireland Michael Parsons at Bloom HQ, Mountat2000
Please note that the details of events listed above are provided by the relevant Local Authorities.