Mannion Clan Lecture Night, 29 August 2014

the Mannion Clan in Menlough Community Centre, County Galway on Friday 29 August 2014

In the region of two hundred people from near and far throughout the country attended the inaugural lecture on the Mannion Clan in Menlough Community Centre, County Galway on Friday 29 August last. Entitled 'The Mannion Clan of County Galway: Warriors, Chieftains, Kings', the illustrated presentation was delivered by Dr Joe Mannion, the leading authority on the history and heritage of this ancient Connacht family. The choice of venue was particularly appropriate in the circumstances, given that the village of Menlough – originally Mionlach Uí Mhainnín – owes its very existence to the Ó Mainnín chieftains, who established their principal castle and associated village here in late medieval times. Undoubtedly, this was the greatest gathering of Mannions in their ancestral stronghold for some 360 years, since the Mannion Clan were forcibly dislodged from their hereditary homelands in the Menlough area during the Cromwellian confiscations of the 1650s.
The intriguing but little-known history of one of Ireland’s oldest families was duly charted during the course of Joe’s two-part presentation, in the middle of which light refreshments were provided by the Skehana and District Heritage Group, who organised this 2014 National Heritage Week event. The interval provided the attendees with an opportunity to mix and mingle with each other, renew old acquaintances and make new ones, and share their knowledge and interest in their mutual Ó Mainnín forebears.
At the conclusion of his presentation, Joe outlined the various measures currently under consideration to commemorate and perpetuate the history and heritage of the Mannion Clan, including the proposed establishment of a Mannion Clan Association, the registering of the Clan with Clans of Ireland, the erection of discreet interpretive signage at significant Ó Mainnín sites, the giving of youth-targeted talks in local schools, online dissemination of information and images, the publication of a comprehensive history of the Mannion Clan, and the hosting of regular Clan gatherings in the years ahead. The feedback on the night and afterwards was extremely positive, and plans are in hand to form a Clan Council to oversee the future development of the Mannion Clan, and to organise events and outings of interest and benefit to its many enthusiastic members.