UM Irish Program Promotes Lectures, Raffle

March 20, 2019

MISSOULA – As warmer spring days awaken the green across Montana, the Irish Studies Program at the University of Montana has planned a raffle and series of lectures.

The raffle to support the Irish Studies Program is underway and will award a trip for two to Ireland, a $1,500 gas voucher and a $500 gift card. The prize drawings will take place Sunday, March 31, at the Stone of Accord in Missoula.

In Missoula, the tickets are available at Rockin’ Rudy’s, the Stone of Accord, the Meagher Bar and all Noon’s stores. Tickets also will be sold at Cavanaugh’s County Celtic in Butte, as well as Bert and Ernie’s and Planet Gyros in Helena.

Each ticket costs $5 or $25 for a book of six. For more information visit  

Three lectures also are planned for April.

Professor Patrick Griffin, the Madden-Hennebry Professor of Irish-American Studies and director of Irish Studies at the University of Notre Dame, will deliver a lecture titled “The Irish Brigade and Age of Revolution: The Story of a Flag” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 3, in the UM Music Building Recital Hall in Missoula.

The lecture will discuss the life of Thomas Francis Meagher, an Irish rebel who raised and led the Irish Brigade as a general during the U.S. Civil War, became acting governor of Montana Territory and died under mysterious circumstances at Fort Benton in 1867. Meagher also designed the Irish tricolor flag of the Irish Republic.

Madden-Hennebry also will present “The Deep History of the Fighting Irish” at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 4, at the Butte-Silver Bow Archives in Butte.

Both lectures are free and open to the public. They are part of the Hesburgh Lecture Series, which was inspired by Rev. Ted Hesburgh to bring Notre Dame faculty to local communities. The Missoula talk is sponsored by the Friends of Irish Studies, the Notre Dame Club of Western Montana the Irish Government Emigrant Support Program. 

The final lecture, “Interpreting Brexit,” will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 9, in the Turner Hall Dell Brown Room. Dr. Katie Ní Loinsigh (Lynch) will reveal discussions in the Irish language community surrounding the choice of name that most accurately described the decision of Britain to leave the European Union. Trying to find a precise name demanded a deeper examination of the issues involved and produced some very insightful, if not controversial, observations.

Ní Loinsigh will deliver the same lecture at noon Wednesday, April 10, in the Butte-Silver Bow Archives. Both lectures are free and open to the public.

Ní Loinsigh was an Irish language and law exchange student from University College, Cork, who studied law at UM for a semester and interned as an Irish language instructor with Irish Studies. She was one of the first two students from Cork to use internships offered by Montana Judges Donald Molloy and Jeremiah Lynch to intern in the federal judicial system. She spent a semester in the courts and a further two months as an intern with Missoula’s Garlington, Lohn and Robinson law firm.


Contact: Traolach Ó Ríordáin, UM director of Irish Studies, 406-544-0311,