Virtual Historic Tour of Ireland Counties Waterford and Wexford

Cultural Center of Cape Cod, South Yarmouth
Wednesdays 6 - 7pm - July 11, 18, 25 and August 1

This course is a four "day" virtual tour of the counties of Waterford and Wexford in the southeast corner of Ireland.

Wexford town Waterford City

Waterford (left) and Wexford (right) have a unique history involving the Viking and Norman invasions. Wexford was one of the key centers in the 1798 Rebellion. It is the ancestral home of the Kennedy's Waterford is Ireland's oldest city.

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Call 508-3947100 for information. Class fee: $75/$70 for members

Lecture: The Famine in Ireland 1845 - 1852

In the past two centuries no event has shaped the Ireland of today more than the famine of 1845 - 1852. No event stirs the emotions of Irish people more. No other event demonstrates so clearly the failure of British colonial policy in Ireland.

Famine image01The famine was the direct result of policies that began with the destruction of Gaelic Ireland in the period 1540 to 1603. This was followed by the Cromwellian settlement of the 1650's, the military defeat of Catholic Ireland in the 1690's, and the subsequent imposition of Penal Laws for the suppression of the Gaelic people of Ireland. After three hundred years of conquest and destruction a huge number of Irish people were reduced to destitution, poverty, illiteracy, and were made dependent on the potato by government policy and landlord greed.

This course will focus on the events that resulted in the worst ever famine in Ireland, the subsequent death of over one million people, and the mass migration of Irish people. It will examine the famine years in detail to clarify the reasons why people died of starvation and disease while the food they produced was taken out of Ireland under armed guard. It will deal decisively with any notion that the Irish people brought this upon themselves or that it was God's will.

Cultural Center of Cape Cod
Wednesdays July 11, 18, 25, August 1: 7:15 to 8:15
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About the Editor

Sean MurphySean Murphy was born and reared in Dublin and has lived in the US since 2005. He is a teacher of Irish history, music, and dance. He has a passion for his homeland and loves to share his knowledge and interest through classes, workshops and conversation. He teaches at The Irish Cultural Center in Canton, the Sons of Erin, Cape Cod Cultural Center and Cotuit Center for the Arts on Cape Cod.

Sean hosts a traditional Irish music session at O’Shea’s Old Inne in West Dennis on Cape Cod every Sunday night starting at 5pm “It is now well-established – the place is full every Sunday. It is great fun with a great variety of songs and musicians of all levels.”


Irish Language

Coming Soon: Irish Language content from Sean Murphy.

Irish History

Irish History Classes

See Classes for 2018

Sean Murphy teaches Irish history at the Cape Cod Cultural Center, Cotuit Center for the Arts and the Irish Cultural Center of New England. His general history course is a chronological account of Irish history from the arrival of Saint Patrick in 432 AD up to the Easter Rebellion of 1916. He has recently added a course on Virtual Tours of Ireland.

The general history course is presented in four and six week topics that focus on the main events in Irish history since 432 AD. Topics are : Saint Patrick, The Viking Invasions 795 - 1170, The Norman Invasion, The Tudor Conquest, The Flight of the Earls, The Rising of 1640 and the Catholic Confederation, The Cromwellian Settlement, the Treaty of Limerick and the Protestant Ascendency, the Penal Laws, the Risings of 1798 and 1803, Catholic Emancipation, the Famine 1845 - 1852, and the Easter Rebellion of 1916.

The Virtual Tours of Ireland are also presented in four and six week courses. Each class focuses on the major tourist attractions in the chosen location. Major cities and all thirty two counties get a full class. Each location is presented with a summary of its general history, from ancient times to the present, and the important facts about its cultural heritage. Video clips are used to show landscapes, townscapes and features of specific attractions. Video clips are also used to show the musical and dance activities associated with the locations.

All students get a presentation in Powerpoint or pdf format for each class. The presentations are designed to provide support for those who wish to learn more. There are lists of web pages, videos and a bibliography included.

Irish Music

Coming Soon: Irish Music content from Sean Murphy.

Irish Dance

Irish Traditional Set and Ceili dance classes are held at the Sons of Erin every Tuesday from 6 to 7pm. Classes are open to non-members. Singles and couples are welcome. No experience necessary. Classes are $10.


Irish Tours and Travel

Locally Sponsored Tours and Travel to Irish destinations.

Irish Movies

See Irish Movie Trailers  

Agnes Brown
Barry Lyndon
Circle of Friends
Commitment, The
Darby O'Gill and the Little People
Into the West
Last Leprechaun, The
Leap Year
Michael Collins
Ned Devine
PS I Love You
Quackster Fortune Has a Cousin Living in the Bronx
Rising of the Moon
Snapper, The
Van, The
War of the Buttons

Irish Icons

Origin and signifcance of five Irish Icons. 

Writings of Saint Patrick and his Legacy

Murphy Online Writings
History of Ireland: Writings of Saint Patrick
History | Academics: 7 lectures
1 hour, All Levels

Letter to the Soldiers of Coroticus and the Confessio.

  • Will understand the context for the writings of Saint Patrick.
  • Will have read the works that are accepted as having been written by Saint Patrick.
  • Will have some examples of the enduring nature of the contribution made by Saint Patrick.

Saint Patrick and his Mission

Murphy Online Viking
History of Ireland: Saint Patrick and his Mission
History | Academics: 14 lectures
3 hours, All Levels

How Ireland Became Christian.

  • Will know the personal details of the person we know as Saint Patrick.
  • Understand important events in the development of Christianity in Ireland.
  • Have some understanding of the major global events that were occurring in Europe that were affecting Ireland.

Viking Invasion, Part 1: 795-902

Murphy Online Viking
History of Ireland: Viking Invasion, Part 1: 795 - 902
History | Academics: 16 lectures
2.5 hours, All Levels

Arrival in Ireland of Viking raiding parties, large scale invasion, settlement and defeat in 902.

  • Understand the effects on the people of Ireland during the first 100 years after the arrival in Ireland of invaders from Scandinavia.
  • Understand why the Vikings came to Ireland and who they were.
  • Understand how the goals of the Vikings in Ireland changed in the 9th century.