5 May to 17 September
In 1917 thousands of American naval servicemen came to Ireland to participate in the First World War. Their interactions with local women, particularly in Cork where they were based, became a major social issue. Many Irish women married these American sailors, with Queenstown / Cobh in particular seeing a large number of weddings. Who were these women and what were their stories? New research by Damian Shiels to identify them using U.S. passport applications has revealed something of the past – and the portraits of many. The exhibition at Sirius Arts Centre will consider a number of these images, and the stories of those young women depicted.
The organiser of the exhibition, Damian Shiels, is an archaeologist and historian with Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd. Formerly a curator in the National Museum of Ireland, he is a specialist on Irish military archaeology and history. His latest book “The Forgotten Irish: Irish Emigrant Experiences in America” was published by The History Press in 2016.