Merchants, Medics, and the Military Commerce and Architecture


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Published in December, ‘Merchants, Medics, and the Military Commerce and Architecture’ provides an exciting insight on the social history of Ireland from 1875 to 1925, as seen through the lives of influential Irish families.

Published by Offaly Historical and Archaeological Society’s Esker Press and authored by Maurice Egan this volume is available in hardback including never seen before exhibits, many of them in colour. It is a must for those with a local, national, and international interest in social history and social justice. This is an excellent read and retails at €24.99.

Between 1875 and 1925, a tumultuous period in Irish history, many provincial families made significant sacrifices in the areas of social justice, infrastructure development and community upliftment. Who were they? What ever became of them? What did they manage to achieve? Where did these family members move to? How did they help change the face of Irish social history?

Researching this fifty-year period and uncovering how certain Tullamore families helped change the course of local and in some cases international history, Maurice Egan has discovered the significant roles families played in social reform. The fascinating stories that have emerged shine a bright light on the enduring impact they made.

‘Maurice Egan’s accomplishment in Merchants, Medics and the Military is that he has identified an important strand of Irish social history that has heretofore been largely unexplored. The stories of the revolutionaries and the land reformers are well documented. The organisation of the urban working classes and the empowerment of the agricultural tenantry have had many narrators. But there has been little focus on the mercantile classes that were at the centre of commercial and social life in the regional towns that remain to this day at the centre of our society…… and he has done them a service in this volume, ensuring that they will have their place in the formation of the Ireland we now live in.’ Conor Brady, (An Irish journalist, novelist, and academic, he is a former editor of The Irish Times).

Maurice Egan was born in Tullamore and attended the Christian Brothers School. He is a retired beverage industry executive and is chairman of P & H Egan (Tullamore) Limited, the brand owner of Egan’s Irish Whiskey. He resides in Johannesburg and has a keen interest in social history from 1850 to 1925.