The History Show

The History Show

Sunday, 6pm

The History Show Sunday 3 March 2013

The History Show Full Programme

Bringing the past to life! Discover how our world was shaped as Myles Dungan and guests explore events ranging from medieval times to the recent past on this weeks programme American Civil War, Josef Stalin 60 years after his death, Pubs and places named after historic figures and Language Bites explains 'Plum Job'.

Coming up on next week's programme

To mark Family History Year, our genealogy experts will be answering your questions about tracing your ancestors.

Email your family history questions to anytime this week.

Or text 51551 during next week’s programme.


American Civil War

Just under 200,000 Irishmen took part in the American Civil War, making it one of the most significant conflicts in Irish history. Hundreds of thousands more were affected away from the battlefield, both in the US and in Ireland itself. The Irish contribution, however, is often only viewed through the lens of famous units such as the Irish Brigade, but the real story is much more complex and fascinating.

Despite this huge level of Irish involvement, little is known in their home country about their experiences. A large number of sites in Ireland are either directly connected with individuals who fought in the American Civil War or were centres of activity relating to the conflict.

An American Civil War Trail is planned around the country in sites either directly connected with individuals who fought in the American Civil War or were centres of activity relating to the conflict.

Local historians, James Doherty and Donncha O Ceallachain took Orla Rapple on the American Civil War trail in Waterford.

Archaeologist Damian Shiels joined Myles in studio to talk about the Civil War Trail initiative as well as his new book Irish in the American Civil War (The History Press).

Damian’s book highlights personal stories of those involved - from the Tipperary man who was the first man to die in the war, to the Corkman who was the last General mortally wounded in action; from the flag bearer who saved his regimental colours at the cost of his arms, to the Roscommon man who led the hunt for Abraham Lincolns assassin, what emerges in this book is a catalogue of gallantry, sacrifice and bravery.

Details of Irish sites and people related to the American Civil War are available at

The ultimate goal of the group is to erect plaques in places around Ireland associated with the American Civil War.

Josef Stalin 60 years after his death

Soviet ruler Joseph Stalin who died 60 years ago this week, has been ranked as the most evil leader in world history. He was General Secretary of the Communist Party from 1922 until his death in 1953 – and estimates of the total number murdered under his reign range from 10 million to 60 million.

Stalin's legacy is still a contentious subject in Russia. The Volgograd Government's recent decision to officially re-name the city 'Stalingrad' on six days each year has renewed debate on the topic.

Lorcan Clancy explored Stalin's cult of personality and his complicated reputation in Russia today.


Pubs and places named after historic figures

Pubs and places named after historic figures

Wherever you are right now, you’re probably only a stone’s throw from your local pub and if it’s been there for a long time, it probably bears the name of the proprietor over the door. In more recent decades though, the trend among pub and club owners has been to call their establishments after historic characters – be they Irish patriots or international figures.

Eoghan Corry came in to talk about this common trend. Among the examples he used were the historic associations with Copperface Jacks – the famous Dublin nightclub.

Rhona Tarrant explored historic names in Galway and brought us a report.


Language Bites

Language Bites

Continuing her Language Bites series, Colette Kinsella explained the origin of PLUM JOB.

Language Bites was made with the support of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.



Contact the Show

Presenter: Myles Dungan

Producer: Yetti Redmond


Ways to Listen

Radio Player