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Remembering the War Dead

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Remembering the War Dead

Post  9459 RDF on Fri Nov 09, 2012 1:37 am

At the end of November 2007, Minister of State at the Irish Department of Defence, with special responsibility for the Office of Public Works, Noel Ahern T.D., launched at new book “Remembering the War Dead.. British Commonwealth and International War Graves in Ireland from 1914” by Professor Fergus D'Arcy in the Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin.


Since the 1920’s the Irish Office of Public Works has been responsible for the graves of those who died in both world wars and are buried and commemorated in the Republic of Ireland. It is calculated that there are least 5,700+ war graves in the whole of Ireland. 2,000+ in Northern Ireland and 3,100+ in the Republic - and Professor D’Arcy’s book gives a history of the 3,100+ war dead in the Republic and how the Irish Government became responsible for them.


At the book launch Minister Ahern said that while many people are familiar with the role of the Office of Pubic Works as the manager of the State’s property, there are some functions that are little known by the general public and that one of these is their responsibilities in the maintenance of the Commonwealth War Graves sites of those who have died as the result of the two wars of the 20th century. The Minster went on to speak about the uniqueness of this book as it reflects the international nature of these graves that mark the final resting places of people from over 20 different nations, the majority of whom were Irish but that it is also important to remember the other Europeans, North Americans, Australians, New Zealanders and Asians who are interred in them.


The Minister extended his thanks to Professor D’Arcy for his most thorough and professional research into this subject and for providing a new insight not only into the history of the Office of Public Works but also to events that occurred in the lifetimes of our parents and grandparents and may have involved and affected some of them directly.


Remembering the Irish War Dead. British Commonwealth and International War Graves in Ireland since 1914 by Professor Fergus D’Arcy, price €22, published by the Irish Stationery Office, is available directly from Government Publications, Molesworth Street, Dublin 2, or can be ordered through booksellers.

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