Military Conference 2013.

Military Conference: For Flag and Country - The Emigrant Irish in Military Service.

For over 400 years Irish emigrants have served in the military forces of their adopted countries. At a time when Ireland is recognized globally for it's Peacekeeping duties with the UN, this conference explores the history of "The Fighting Irish".

Venue: Gleeson's, The Square, Roscommon, Ireland.  Date: Friday 3rd May 2013.


09.45             Welcome & Registration.

10.00 - 10.15 Introduction and opening of conference by Cllr. Tom Crosby Mayor of Roscommon and Capt. Donal Buckley Chairman.

10.20 - 10.50 Dr. Harman Murtagh "The Irish Military Diaspora 1600 - 1850"

10.55 - 11.25 Ian Kenneally "The Irish in The American Civil War"

11.30 - 12.00 Damien Quinn. "The Connaught Rangers and the Fog of War"

12.00 - 12.30 Discussion. Questions and answers etc. Capt. Donal Buckley Chairman.

12.30 - 13.45 Lunch.

14.00 - 14.30 Declan Paul Hughes "The Irish in Vietnam"

14.35 - 15.05 Ron Howko "The West of Ireland Commemorates the Irish who served"

15.10 - 15.40 Dr. Colonel Terence O'Neill “Ireland & UN Military Operations”

15.40 - 16.00 Discussion. Questions and answers. Thanks. Conclusion. Capt. Donal Buckley Chairman.

16.30 Optional: FREE Guided tour of Edenville House, formerly Roscommon Military Barracks. Please note: Unfortunately Edenville House is NOT suitable for wheelchairs or people with limited mobility. This tour is organized in association with Roscommon County Council and Roscommon Lamb Festival 2013 (see below).

Biographies of Speakers.
Capt. Donal Buckley (Ret). The Conference chairman is Capt. Donal Buckley. Donal is a retired Irish Army Officer, a Graduate of the Irish Military College and has a History Masters from NUIG. He is veteran of overseas service in South Lebanon and Western Sahara. He is a historian, author and founder of Military Heritage Tours which provides battlefield tours in Ireland, Europe, Turkey and the USA. He was involved in Anglo / Irish reconciliation projects such as the dedication of a VC grave in Westport and the construction of the Mayo Peace Park in Castlebar. He lectures in military history, especially on the theme of 'Remembrance'.

Dr. Harman Murtagh. Dr Harman Murtagh is president of the Military History Society of Ireland/Irish Commission for Military History. He edited the society's journal, "The Irish Sword" for twenty-five years. He is the author of four books and more than fifty book chapters and articles. He contributed the chapter 'Irish soldiers abroad 1600 to 1800' to T. Bartlett and K. Jeffrey (eds),"A Military History of Ireland"(Cambridge, 1996). He is a visiting fellow at Athlone Institute of Technology.


Ian Kenneally. Ian Kenneally is currently completing a PhD in history at NUI Galway. He previously studied history at UCC and has contributed to a number of studies on newspaper history. He is the author of "The Paper Wall: Newspapers and Propaganda in Ireland 1919 – 1921”, "Courage & Conflict: Forgotten Stories of the Irish at War" and "From the Earth a Cry: The Story of John Boyle O'Reilly". Ian has a particular interest in the Irish who served during The American Civil War.


Damien Quinn. Damien Quinn received a Masters of Literature from NUI Galway in 2011. His area of specialist research is Irishmen who served in the British Army. Damien's M. Litt, entitled 'The Connaught Rangers and the Wars of Empire 1793-1922' is a survey of one Irish regiment's experience and involvement in imperial conflicts. In addition, in 2009 Damien was invited to guest curate ‘Galway and The Wars of Empire’ for the Galway City Museum which examines the involvement of Galway men and women in the Wars of Empire between 1796 and 1922. Damien is currently editing "The Connaught Rangers and the Wars of Empire 1793-1922" for publication.


Declan Paul Hughes. Declan Paul Hughes is founder and joint-Executive Director of the Irish Veterans Historical Research Centre Ltd. His background is in human rights when he founded Rescue Trust - a human rights charity established in 1990 to focus specifically on the treatment & rehabilitation of torture and trauma survivors. In 1998 he began identifying the Irish who died in the Vietnam War and this study led directly to a tour of the Vietnam Memorial - “The Wall That Heals” - in Ireland in 1999. He recently returned to college, undertaking an International Relations degree in Dublin City University


Ron Howko. Ron Howko is Commander of Commodore John Barry, American Legion Post No. 3, which represents Irish men and women from the West of Ireland who served in the US forces. He was born in Flint, Michigan and served almost 27 years in the U.S. Army. The last 19 years were spent as a Visual Information Specialist with Army Broadcast Service. Ron served as a producer-director, operations manager with HQ American Forces Network in Germany and program director with Armed Forces Radio & Television Service Broadcast Center in Los Angeles. During President Clintons’ first Inauguration Ceremony, Ron worked with White House Communications, Pentagon staff in Washington, D.C. After retiring to Ireland in 1996, he subsequently contributed to the RTE award winning “Green fields of Viet Nam” and multiple episodes of “War Stories”.


Col. Dr. John Terence O'Neill. Col. O'Neill PhD is Adjunct Professor at the Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway, Research Associate in the Centre for Contemporary Irish Studies, T.C.D. and a former Colonel in the Irish Defence Forces. He served with the United Nations in Lebanon, Angola and the Congo. He completed his M. Phil in Peace Studies with the Irish School of Ecumenics in 1992 and was awarded a PhD from Trinity College in 2001. Dr O'Neill's area of research is peacekeeping and he has co-authored “United Nations Peacekeeping in the Post-Cold War Era (2005).


The conference is organized by Roscommon Civic Trust, in conjunction with Roscommon County Council, Irish Veterans & Military Heritage Tours and in association with Roscommon Lamb Festival 2013.
Roscommon Lamb Festival 2013 is a six-day series of events where you can sample the unique flavour of Roscommon. Why not combine your conference visit with a week-end stay in the town, where you can sample all the delights of good food and great craic.


Booking Information.
The Conference fee is €60 (sixty Euro). Fee includes Conference Pack and light lunch (soup, sandwiches, tea/coffee), in Gleeson's
Payment in advance by cheque or money order made out to Roscommon Civic Trust and sent to Cahal Mahon, 6 Sliabh Bán View, The Walk, Roscommon, Ireland.
You can also pay by Credit Card via PayPal.
 Please send your email address and number of attendees and we will send you an invoice. Your Credit Card details will not be disclosed. 
Please send detail to:
This facility is for conference booking only. To book accommodation etc. see links below.

NOTE: Places strictly limited to 100 (one hundred) patrons maximum. Strictly first come first served basis. First one hundred payments received secures place. A waiting list will be maintained for late applicants.  The organizers are not responsible for payments delayed or lost in the post.

Cancellations will be accepted up to and including Friday 5th April 2013. Thereafter a handling fee of €25 will be charged on late cancellations. Please contact for confirmation of payment, receipt, problems etc.


Further Conference  information and regular updates are available on: Facebook:  :  Twitter:  :  Google+: and we are also on Worldirish: and The Gathering 2013:


For local Hotel and B&B information see  A limited number of beds at a special conference rate are available from Gleesons Townhouse, The Square, Roscommon. Tel: 00353906626954 : Web: Please mention Roscommon Military Conference 2013 when booking. Book early to avoid disappointment.


Roscommon is easily reached by car or by train from Dublin, or fly into Ireland West Airport at Knock from the UK or Europe ( For train timetables see: and for bus times see:  

All proceeds from the conference will go towards the Edenville House Project.