Our Archival Collections > John L. Sullivan Collection

NAME: John L. Sullivan Collection                  Item Description                Back to list of Collections

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John L. Sullivan Collection

1915 -1986


3 cassette tapes + pp


IE BL/SC/JLS is the John L Sullivan Collection held in UCC Library. This collection was donated to the library by Máirín Mac Góráin in 2007.


The collection comprises of 3 cassette tapes of interviews conducted by Riobaird Mac Góráin with John L. Sullivan, a native of West Cork and veteran of the War of Independence. Also tss transcripts of same. The interviews were conducted in 1986 when Sullivan was aged 85.
A member of the Pro Treaty side in the Civil War, Sullivan describes his motivations and the people he encountered and served with. He also describes his earlier involvement with the Volunteer movement, his subsequent arrest and incarceration in Cork Jail and Port Laoise Prison. He describes encounters with many of the notable personalities of the period, including an encounter with Michael Collins in Bandon the day before his assassination. After the war of Independence Sullivan joined the Army Comrades and subsequently the ‘Blueshirt’ movement under the leadership of Eoin O’Duffy. In 1950 he was elected to Cork County Council and became the longest serving member there. In the course of the interview he gives his thoughts on the development of Local Authorities in Ireland and the role they play in society.


Access: Available by appointment with the Archives Service to holders of UCC Readers tickets

Please note, the cassette tapes are not accessible to the public.

Language: English

Finding Aid: Item Description (see below)

1        26  Sept 1986                 Cassette ‘Tape 1’.

2        26 Sept 1986                  Cassette ‘Tape 2’

3        26 Sept 1986                  Cassette ‘Tape 3’

4    [1986]
Two copies of a tss transcript of ‘Tape 1’ above. (Both sides). Deals with Sullivan’s early involvement with the Volunteer movement, his imprisonment as a Republican activist and his activities in the Civil War on behalf of the Pro Treaty side. Includes an account of his meeting with Michael Collins in Bandon, Co. Cork the day before Collins’ assassination. The second copy has mss corrections.
2 items.  29pp

5    [1986]
Tss transcript of ‘Tape 2’ above. (Both sides). He describes his activities in the 1920’s as a member of the Army Comrades Association and subsequently the Blueshirt movement under Eoin O’Duffy. He became active in politics, being elected in 1950 to Cork County Council and he details the role he feels local authorities have played in the development of Irish society.  29pp

6    [1986]

Tss transcript of ‘Tape 3’ above. (Both sides). He discusses his involvement with the Cooperative movement, of which he first became a member in 1924 and various employment initiatives in the West Cork region.  9pp
7    [1986]

Mss notes in pencil of the main themes of the interview.  2pp

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Author: Carol Quinn, Archivist, UCC Library, University College Cork

Last updated: 08 March 2016

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