Tenth Annual O’Leary Clan Gathering.



If 2004 was one of our smaller Gatherings, this year was amongst the largest.  We have some 350 loyal members, and of course many of these live in America, Australasia and other far away places.  Most can only come to the Gatherings from time to time, and we have always understood that this is the nature of things. 


A small number of members who are better placed come to the event virtually every year, and we are delighted to keep welcoming them each time.


2005 was our tenth anniversary, and we had about 100 at our dinner, most of whom attended the other functions as well.  This year we were delighted to see a large American contingent, after a fall off following the Twin Towers disaster and the subsequent and natural reluctance to flying.


Our theme this year was the DNA Project which has reached an interesting point.  There is tremendous interest in this new approach to genealogy.  Many of our members cannot take part directly because of gender, and in other instances members are closely related to one member who represents the whole group.  But all without exception show a close interest in progress and a determination to press on with the study and to achieve results.


As usual we gathered at Creedon’s Hotel in Inchigeelagh.  We were welcomed at our Reception on the Friday evening  by Eugene O’Leary, our Chief Organiser, by Joe Creedon, our hospitable host,  and by Michael Manning, Manager of the Cork and Kerry Tourism Board who takes such a kind interest in our progress. 


This was followed by entertainment given by our old friend, Tomás O Canáinn, Chief Bard of Ireland and Uillean Piper Supreme.


On the Saturday morning we had our group photograph taken, a copy of which adorns this Journal.  As last year, the location was Inchigeelagh Cross, and traffic was brought to a standstill for several minutes.


Next was an introduction and survey of our first ten years presented by Joe Creedon.

Then a general survey of progress on the DNA Project.  This paper was written and prepared by the leader of our DNA team, Bonnie Norma O’Leary Harvey, from Florida.   Unfortunately, due to family illness, Bonnie could not be present in person, so her paper was delivered with great gusto by our old friend Don O’Leary from Philadelphia.


Peter O’Leary followed this with “Where do we go from here?” and elicited strong support for some invaluable funding by members of the next phase of our work.


We then had a rest from work with a coach trip to Carrignacurra Castle and to Gougane Barra.


Saturday evening concluded with a splendid dinner at Creedon’s Hotel, and musical entertainment to follow it.


On Sunday morning we had two talks from very experienced amateur genealogical researchers, our two members Kathleen Flanagan, from New Jersey, and Kate Corbett, from Sussex.  Both gave us the benefit of their many years searching for their own family trees, and helping many others to do likewise.


On Sunday afternoon as is now usual, we attended Mass in the old churchyard in Inchigeelagh.  Fr.Martin O’Hare officiated, and Frs. Barry O’Leary (Ecuador), Tim McGrath (Wales) and  Dan Crowley (Boston) assisted.  Fr Barry gave a most interesting homily which brought in the O’Leary family, and the Environment.


This concluded a very happy and interesting weekend.  Roll on 2006.