The ‘Our Irish Women’ project was carried out during 2018 between all the partners in iCAN – Irish Community Archive Network – to celebrate the one hundredth anniversary of the Representation of the People Act of 1918 which extended the parliamentary vote to Irish women for the first time. There were certain conditions attaching to the right to vote in parliamentary elections, for example: women had to be property owners or the wives of property owners; they had to be over the age of thirty, or university graduates. Following much lobbying and representation by women’s groups, universal adult suffrage was achieved on the establishment of the Irish Free State in 1922.
During the centenary year 2018, each heritage group attached to iCAN was invited to contribute the story of one Irish Woman from its locality to celebrate the anniversary. The idea was to record the vital contribution of women to Irish life and society and to commemorate the work or achievements of women who have made a difference.
Conscious of the rich Irish traditional musical heritage that this area has inherited, Abbey and District Heritage Group nominated Aggie Whyte Ryan, the famous Traditional Fiddle Player from Ballinakill as their Irish Woman for this project.
Click on Aggie Whyte to read her story.