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Kate Martin

Kate Martin was a traditional Irish harper in the 18th century. We have only a few references to her, and they are all retrospective. Some of them imply or state that she was still alive at the beginning of our Long 19th Century study period, but I think this is not reliable information. This post is to discuss the information we have to see if we can say anything useful about Kate Martin from 1792 onwards.

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Dominic O’Donnell

Dominic O’Donnell was a traditional Irish harper who was alive and active towards the end of the 18th century and apparently into the beginning of the 19th century. We have very little information about him. This post is to gather together the different references to see if we can say anything useful about what he was doing during our Long 19th Century study period (1792 onwards).

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Mary Kellett of Cornashesk, patron of traditional harp music

I am not usually paying much attention to the patrons of the traditional harpers, because it is enough work for me to simply track down the harpers themselves, who they were and what they were doing.

However I want to try and pin down Mary Kellett of Cornashesk, because she is mentioned in an anecdote from Patrick Byrne in the early 19th century, and we need to date the anecdote, so as to fit it in to Patrick Byrne’s life story.

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Patrick Byrne part 4: 1841-4

In Part 1, I wrote about Patrick Byrne’s early years and education, down to his discharge from harp school in 1822. Then in Part 2, we looked at his early career, working for patrons in Ireland and England from 1822 to 1837. Part 3 covered his first visit to Scotland over the winter of 1837-8, and his tour of Ireland in 1839-40.

By the beginning of 1841, Patrick Byrne was in his mid 40s. His regular job at the Royal Hotel in Leamington Spa had given him access to high-ranking aristocratic patrons in England and Scotland, and he spent time visiting them at their houses around Warwickshire and near Edinburgh, as well as maintaining a circuit of patrons in Ireland. He seems to have deliberately built these networks of patronage, so that by the beginning of 1841 he got as high as he ever could, by performing for Queen Victoria at Windsor Castle.

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