It is difficult, at this remove, to understand how it took nearly 80 years for this book to be published. The original manuscript by Anna Parnell lay in the National Library for many years. Dana Hearne, who has lectured at Concordia University in Montreal, published the original manuscript with extensive annotations in 1986. She describes in her superb, updated introduction the “exhilarating experience” at finding in the Manuscripts Room what had been labelled an “unpublishable” narrative.
he Land War is one of the most important struggles of modern Irish history and cannot be fully understood without the part played by women and, especially, by Anna Parnell and her sister Fanny.
Fanny, Anna and Charles Stewart, their brother, were part of the Parnell family in Co Wicklow. Anna subsequently lived in Dublin, Paris and London before going to New York in the late 1870s. The Parnell sisters founded the American Ladies’