Madigan Muses: Breaking Barriers

Madigan Muses: Breaking Barriers
by Marilyn Madigan

This year, the theme for National History Day was Breaking Barriers in History. I am sure when this theme was chosen, no one could anticipate the barriers that everyone would be experiencing this year.

For the past seven years, I have had  privilege of judging at both the local and national levels for National History Day. On Saturday March 7, I was able to judge in person the documentaries in Cleveland.

The students’ research and work in producing these documentaries was remarkable. These students are our future in promoting History. Shortly after the local contest in Cleveland was completed, the Ohio History Contest was faced with the challenge of continuing in the face of the barrier of stay home and stay safe.

Ohio History Contest and the National History Day has decided to continue the contest virtually. Please visit National History Day on Facebook. There you will able to see some of the students’ entries from the different states. I look forward to joining with the Ancient Order of Hibernians and the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians in judging the virtual entries for the Irish and Irish American Award.

Trasna na Tire
As a history buff, I was always faced with the barrier of not being able to attend Irish History Lectures because of physical distances. One benefit of Irish Historians staying safe at home was the introduction of the group Trasna na Tire. Trasna na Tire is a group dedicated to sharing Irish history by hosting  nightly lectures on ZOOM.

I have had the privilege of attending many of these lectures. With this format, you feel as if you are at the lecture in person. I highly recommend anyone with a interest in Irish history to check this out. Many of these lectures can also be viewed on YouTube.

We are living in a very historic time. Hopefully history will remember us in a positive way. We have faced many barriers. Thank God that we live in a time with great technology.

This technology has helped to keep us connected. Let us remember the historic lessons from the 1918 Spanish Flu. Let us not repeat the mistakes. Yes, we have to get on with our lives, but we need to do it safely for all. Let history look back at this period as a time when we cared for one another, above all.

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