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Notice of Forthcoming Events

New York City - June 2024

Volunteers NEEDED For An Oral History Project

Project title: A Path Well-Trodden: Narratives from Ireland’s Mass Paths

The project is looking for volunteers, aged over 18 years of age who emigrated (or whose parents or grandparents emigrated) from rural Ireland in the 1960s and are currently living in the New York area.


You are invited to participate in an oral history project to record the living heritage associated with walking Mass paths in Ireland in a relaxed in-conversation event being held in New York City in June 2024.


Known in Irish as Slí an Aifrin or Cosán an Aifrinn, Mass paths have their routes in Penal times (1695-1756) when the Catholic faith was proscribed in Ireland, but the majority have their origins in the nineteenth century when church building once again became a feature of Irish life. People would have used these paths to travel to Mass at the local parish church, go to school or event to visit the local shops. There is a lot of living heritage associated with these paths that includes social habits, rituals, traditions, stories, expressions, specialised knowledge and skills that have been recognised and transferred from generation to generation within communities.


Each session would take about one hour of your time and consist of 5 people. 

Further information is provided in the participant information sheet and Poster Call New York 2024.

If you are interested in participating please contact Dr Hilary Bishop by email or through her community website

There is no obligation to take part.

Thank you!

Recent Past Events

November - December 2023

NEW OUTDOOR EXHIBITION:    'A Well Trodden Path' by Caitriona Dunnett

Galway City Museum are delighted to host ‘A Well Trodden Path’ which is a new partnership exhibition between photographer Caitriona Dunnett, Dr. Hilary BishopLackagh Museum & Heritage Centre and Lackagh community. Visitors can now view this exhibition on the external walls of Galway City Museum.

The exhibition explores the heritage of mass paths in the townland of Lackagh in Co Galway. For decades parishioners from outlying homes journeyed across fields to celebrate mass. A web of 15 mass paths was mapped out. Fragments of old tracks, stiles and footbridges were pieced together with the recollections of older parishioners.

The paths were walked in all weathers. A parishioner recalled taking the path with her sister and friends. It took about 2 hours. She wore her old raincoat and shoes. Across her arm she carried her good clothes to change into; after mass she changed back.

Caitriona Dunnett photographed traces of these paths. She converted her photographs into contact negatives creating and then toning cyanotypes with tea, a favourite of many who walked the paths. Dunnett layers her work. She is drawn to this process and how it relates to the years of footfall across the fields and the many stories attached.

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