A New Chapter has been added to the History Section on Goldenbridge

AuthorMessage DateMessage
Michael O'Flanagan12/07/2009A New Chapter has been added to the History Section on Goldenbridge
Michael O'Flanagan14/07/2009---
Marie-Therese O' Loughlin19/08/2010Why are there no photographs of St Vincent's Industrial school on display on site? Are there none available?

Innumerable defenseless children suffered horrendously behind GB refuge prison doors for generations. It saddens me greatly to thus see only photos of trains & other historical interests pertaining to Inchicore.

Re: Goldenbridge entry in History section.

There is mention of 'Let Your Voices Emerge' LOVE organisation, which is now defunct. BTW, said organisation apologised to victims-survivors of institutional abuse when the Laffoy-Ryan Report was published. The overseer of this organisation was never in Goldenbridge and her biased views on institution, indeed, left much to be desired. It behooves Inchicore.info to thoroughly check out its sources before placing it in the history section.

Also, Sr. Helena O' Donoghue, the then Provincial leader of the Sisters of Mercy, never set foot in Goldenbridge Industrial School, so all her information to the commission to inquire into institutional abuse was third-hand & only from the perspective of her order and faithful staff.

I spent my whole childhood hidden away in that despicable institution. The sisters in the convent for the most part, were never allowed to have any contact with industrial school orphans (as we were euphemistically called) so information passed on to Sister Helena O' Donoghue from that source would also be questionable.

I note there is a lot of praise for the Sisters of Mercy, but none for the actual children who resided in the industrial school and who slaved away every day of their lives making rosary-beads for mother Ireland.

So as to avoid revisionist thinking vis a vis Goldenbridge industrial school, here is more information concerning what went on behind the one and only proud Inchicore prison refuge doors.


Marie-Therese O' Loughlin20/08/2010‘Let your Voices Emerge’ should have read ‘Let OUR Voices Emerge.’ Methinks , that was a Freudian slip.

Catherine Mc Cauley’s initial idea for building parts of building at Lower Baggot St, was for the purpose of teaching the poor. She would have been a very angry person if she were alive today to know that her precious buildings were (allegedly) used for meetings in the past by an organisation calling itself “Let Our Voices Emerge”. LOVE, what a pathetic acronym; considering the systematic vitriolic diatribe spewed out over the years on victims of institutional abuse, who were under the guardianship of followers of this kind woman. For example: degenerate propensity terminology, given our familial lineage, etc.

I see that the history section uses 'K' as opposed to 'C' with respect of the foundress of the Sisters' of Mercy.

Marie-Therese O' Loughlin21/08/2010 Dr. Forbes, in his ' Memorandums in Ireland,' speaks of the …'[n]oble Sisters of Mercy are found, educating the young,’ Well, in the case of children from Goldenbridge industrial school, the word ‘education’ was a valuable asset; definitely not afforded them by the nuns. In over one hundred years of existence of Goldenbridge industrial school, up to the sixties; one solitary inmate, in the guise of Christine Buckley, was educated to Leaving Cert standard. She had to go to the nearby National school to be in receipt of that achievement. There was also another handful of GB inmates (note, I don’t use euphemistically words, such as ‘pupils’ or ‘residents‘) during the same period; who were privileged to go to the National School and of whom subsequently went on to receive Inter Certs. Bernadette Fahy, author of ‘Freedom of Angels’ Surviving a childhood in Goldenbridge, being one of the most notable inmates.

“ One of the three main objects for which Mrs. McAuley designed her order were the care of poor schools …[a]nd to these three works whenever practicable the Sisters are bound by rule to attend.” Notwithstanding this; the Sisters of Mercy resident managers at GB never lived up to the ideologies set out by their foundress. They failed miserably, from my standpoint and that of my industrial school survivor counterparts, in their duteousness rule to give children in their care even bare basic education. They were paid adequate capitation grants by the government to see to educational needs of children, instead, portions of that money [allegedly] went to Carysfort College to educate postulants. The latter of whom temporarily came to Goldenbridge, to practice their teaching skills. Not that I’m complaining about that indeed. Because, as far as I’m personally concerned, they were the only ones who imparted learning to us children, who were so extremely starved of knowledge. It was such a pity that it was so short-lived! I remember everything I learned from them to this day.
In the eyes of the religious most of us were not good enough to be educated. We were never going anywhere in life, so why should they bother with us in that sphere. We were habitually sent out of classroom to work in laundry, scrub institution, scullery work and dinner preparation. I appreciate that the nuns were over-worked to the extent that one of them always slept in the classroom (that is, if she wasn’t wheeling a baby in a perambulator; of whom she would have chosen, amongst others’ to be petted.)

We received such minuscule schooling that most of those from my era in the late fifties/late sixties left the institution hardly able to read or write. I am now in adult literacy education and have a fantastic online tutor. I’ll be damned if I will let the fact that I was unable to create a sentence and know where to put a full stop upon leaving GB best me. I’ve been so embittered all my life by the fact that we were with respect of education (amongst other things) seen as such worthless beings to the nuns. I sat with a group of children in an exam room this year and if I’m spared I shall continue to do same next year and the year after. There is an old saying ‘if you can’t beat them join them’. Most of my counterparts are unable to express themselves on paper, so I am doing it here for them as well.

Ironically, the few inmates who were privileged enough to get outside schooling were the ones to the forefront of institutional child abuse in the past decade and quarter of a century. I read somewhere that the ethos in the past was to educate black people as the government was in fear of them rebelling into the future. Whoever would have thought that the young would come back to haunt the black widow?

Incidentally, albeit, slightly off education topic, nevertheless, still related. Ireland saw fit to make Christine Buckley ‘Person of the Year’ in 2009, whilst Inchicore.info, by the same token, pretends that a past Goldenbridge industrial school inmate of her calibre is positively influential enough to be therefore placed in Inchicore history alongside Mr Mitchell. Are past Inchicorean inmates of the prison refuge not as important to history of area as is the former etc? Pray tell me? Are they too murky and controversial to contend with indeed? Just wondering!

There should be a positive write-up on ‘Inchicoreans’ Christine Buckley and Bernadette Fahy for the Trojan work they’ve done to date with past child institutional abuse, instead of highlighting only a right wing conservative Catholic newspaper biased opinion, by a person with gargantuan problems. See links below.

Some of us sat Primary Cert at 14/15 years old, within this *internal school*, when most children were/are ordinarily in receipt of Inter Certs (Junior Cert). Even then, pre-prepared answers were placed on our desks for us to copy by nun in charge. What a farce! She was doubtless covering herself with the department of education.

Instead of doing homework after so-called school, a school-room was turned into a rosary-bead factory. I put up a link vis a vis same in last reply. It’s self explanatory.
Catherine McCauley… [r]esolved to devote both time and money to the service of the poor‘ and I know that it would have saddened her to see child slave-labour in the third most important institution affiliated to the Sisters’ of Mercy. …[‘S]ome large rooms fit for teaching poor children,’ were specially built in Baggot St, because she obviously saw education as important to poor children. Vulnerable Goldenbridge children would have been stimulated, had their aesthetic growing minds been somewhat developed by education. It would have made up for the emotional, psychological deficits of their wounded lived. Education would have set them nicely on the future road of life, as they invariably had to support themselves at sixteen years old in the outside world, when their incarceration sentence was obsolete.

It’s such a pity that the Sisters of Mercy did not practice… the [u]tter self- abnegation and self-devotion, and with that earnestness, tenderness, and patience which can only spring from the profoundest conviction that in so labouring they are fulfilling God's will as revealed to man.' that Dr. Forbes, in his 'Memorandums in Ireland’ speaks of proudly.









John White19/11/2010I was at Goldenbridge from 2 1/4 to 4 1/2 years old during 1960 to 1962. Does anyone know how small boys and girls were treated? Does anyone have photos of the buildings?
Kindest regards, John