On the 23rd of May this year the Chicago Sun-Times reported that Barak Obama can trace his ancestry back to a small Irish village. Further investigation revealed that the apparent location of these roots is the small village of Moneygall, County Offaly. Having conducted my own extensive research (5 mins on Wikipedia) I can reveal that his great great great great grandfather was none other than Mr Fulmuth Kearney, a shoemaker of the highest caliber by all accounts. Fulmuth emigrated to the United States in 1850 and set about setting up a life for himself in his new country.
At first I took this bit of breaking news with a pinch of salt but the more I have listened to Obama I do believe it could just be true after all. Comparisons with John F Kennedy are obvious and he has included Ireland’s struggle for peace in many of his speeches. Now this could simply be a ruse to woo the Irish American vote but I believe it’s the Irish in Barak just bursting to get out. This said I cannot see his picture replacing that of either JFK or the Pope in households across our country just yet.
So now that we have establishe the bona fide of Moneygall’s claim to fame, what do we know about the tiny village? Well, not much. Moneygall is located on the N7 between Limerick and Dublin. Its population is about 300. The local Gaelic football club was formed in 1885 and were originally know as The Honeymounts before they changed to Moneygall in the early 1900. Even though Moneygall is in the county of Offaly the football pitch is in the neighboring county of Tipperary and they play in the Tipp league. The village has a garda (police) station, five shops, a post office, a Roman Catholic Church and a national school. But wait for it that’s not all, this great town has two of the finest pubs in Ireland.