That's Just How It Was

That's Just How It Was

by Mary Thorpe


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This work is a labour of love by the writer Mary Thorpe as a tribute to her much loved Granny O'Rourke (nee Nolan) in an attempt to place the stories she heard and was told into a true and historical context. As a social worker who came across many cases of social deprivation in modern times, in the various Social Work Departments in which she worked in the South East and North West of England, Mary had the dawning realisation regarding what her own Grandmother had been through in even harder times in the late part of the Nineteenth Century and early part of the Twentieth Century in Ireland and sought to record this.

Mary felt the driving need to record her much loved grandmother's story as recognition of Bridget's harsh life and also as a tribute to her and the millions of others like her who made the best of things whilst still retaining a sense of pride, of the worth of education as a ticket out of poverty and of the importance of retaining one's dignity and commitment to family through good and bad times.

Mary acknowledges that Bridget possessed the old Irish good luck as well, in marrying a 'good man' and in gaining the "sponsorship" of her patron-N. Stanislav Murphy.

Within the telling of Bridget's story however, Mary is also writing about an era of tough times and she acknowledges 'these roots' as the make-up of her own resilient, Irish character. She is proud of her grandmother's achievements especially with regard to the life chances Bridget was able to create for her family, and rightly so!

Mary uses the life of Bridget to celebrate the achievements of other women in Dublin and Bray, in fact from all over Ireland, in this era, and as such, this story will be of interest to anyone with Irish ancestry. Mary hopes her readers will enjoy the mix of history and biography as an authentic record of times past and that this will be an addition to Celtic history from an empathetic and homespun point of view. Mary clearly believes that 'our roots' are as important just as 'our word is our bond'.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781491889862
Publisher: AuthorHouse
Publication date: 02/20/2014
Pages: 276
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)

About the Author

Mary Thorpe was born and raised in Wolfetone Square, West Bray, in County Wicklow, Ireland. She was the middle of five children of Patrick and Lolly Kavanagh (nee O’Rourke). She attended St. Patrick’s National School, where she gained a certificate of education at fourteen years of age. She worked in a lot of factory jobs until she met and married Ian Thorpe in England and they had five children. When Mary was forty-one years old, she made the decision to return to education and undertook a course of study in Langley College in Berkshire. Having then gained the relevant qualification to gain entry into university, she applied for and was accepted onto a university course of social sciences, which included social work and higher education. On completion of the university course, Mary was appointed to many social work posts. When her husband and mother died in 1997, she moved north to Preston to be near her daughter. Mary retired in October 2010, and now lives in Preston in Lancashire.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements 7

Foreword 11

Historical Background 13

Early Years 35

Moving to Dublin (Crosstwaithe Park) 45

Getting Married/Living in Dublin 64

Moving to Bray 98

Andrew's Death/Life without Him 123

Appendices 185

Bibliography 263

Books/Magazines/Archive Records 271

About the Author 273

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