Garrett FitzGerald (b. 1926)
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Garrett FitzGerald (b. 1926)


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Track 1: Desmond FitzGerald’s family background in London and family visits to West Kerry are recalled. Track 2: Garrett FitzGerald’s mother, Mabel McConnell, was a Northern Unionist, he explains, who became involved with the suffragette movement when she lived in London in 1909. Mabel was also involved with the central branch of the Gaelic League, where she met her future husband, Desmond FitzGerald. In 1913, the couple rented Ballintaggart House in Dingle, Co. Kerry, where they met The O’Rahilly, who invited Desmond to join the IRB. Two years later the FitzGeralds moved to Bray, Co. Wicklow, and later Desmond FitzGerald established the Irish Volunteers in West Kerry. Track 3: Garrett Fitzgerald explains that just before the Rising, The O’Rahilly sent Desmond FitzGerald to meet Eoin MacNeill in an attempt to have the MacNeill’s Countermanding Order countermanded. During Easter Week, Garrett’s father’s role in the GPO was to take charge of food supplies. Garrett recounts a story told to him by his father about his return home directly after the Rising. He was arrested at his home and transported to Frongoch Camp in North Wales. His release and further arrest in later years, as a result of the “German Plot”, is described. Track 4: Desmond FitzGerald’s inclusion as a public relations officer with the Irish Delegation to London prior to the Treaty, is described, as is his wife’s strong opposition to the signing of the Treaty. Garrett FitzGerald explains that he was “a child of reconciliation” between his parents in 1926. Track 5: Desmond FitzGerald’s position in politics during the years from 1919 to 1938 is described, as is his work at the League of Nations, and his title of Senior Minister of the Crown in the Commonwealth in 1930 – a title which amused him greatly, says his son. The impact on Desmond FitzGerald of the shooting of Kevin O’Higgins in 1927 is explored, as is Garrett’s memory of his attendance, with his mother, at the 1941 commemorations of 1916 in the GPO. The Curragh Mutiny, and Desmond FitzGerald’s strong views on this event are also described, as is his disappointment at the refusal of Éamon de Valera to be part of the Irish Delegation to the Treaty negotiations in 1921. Tracks 6-7: Contains Garrett FitzGerald’s recollection of his father’s security detail in Bray after the O’Higgins murder, and of his love of holidaying in South Kerry. An anecdotal account follows of the decision arrived at regarding Garrett’s training in law, and there is also a description of his early career in Aer Lingus.

Additional information



Audio series:

The 1916 Rising Oral History Collections


128 kbps

Download time limit:

48 hours

File size(s):

7.33 MB, 4.40 MB, 6.99 MB, 3.65 MB, 10.94 MB, 8.46 MB, 9.23 MB

Number of files:


Product ID:



FitzGerald, Desmond (Interviewee’s father)

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