Wednesday, 14 November, at 8pm in Athlone Public Library
Talk by Prof John Horgan
Summary Prof Horgan will discuss the life and career of Peter Kilroy, an Athlone journalist. Kilroy was a journalist for nearly fifty years, beginning in 1923 until his death in 1971, at the age of 63.
The eldest of eight children, he had to leave formal education after his father’s sudden death in 1922. He joined the Westmeath Independent, reporting on Court proceedings all over the county as well as on church, political, social and sporting events. Five years later, he moved to Dublin to join the staff of a new short-lived Government paper, the Star, before working with the Manchester Herald, Irish Press, and Catholic Standard. At the same time he remained the Irish Correspondent for several agencies and papers abroad: the international News Agency, the New York Journal American and the Melbourne Advocate.
John Horgan will concentrate on Kilroy’s early career as a journalist in newly-independent Ireland. Peter Kilroy kept extensive diaries, which offer a wealth of information on his life and times. These diaries, which will form the basis of the lecture, have recently been transcribed by Peter’s daughter, Anne Kilroy. After the lecture, Anne Kilroy will formally present the diaries to Athlone Public Library.
Speaker Prof John Horgan is emeritus Professor of Journalism at the School of Communications, Dublin City University, and is the author of many books on the media and Irish history, including biographies of Noel Browne, Mary Robinson, and Seán Lemass. Between 2007 and 2014, he was Ireland’s first Press Ombudsman, having earlier worked as a journalist with the Irish Times and the Evening Press, among other publications. In 1977, he was elected to Dáil Éireann for the Labour Party in Dublin County South, a seat he held until 1981. He was a member of Seanad Éireann from 1969 to 1977.