A CONCISE but comprehensive book about the history of Hacketstown was launched recently to much acclaim and excitement.

Retired teacher and Hacketstown native Jim Shannon spent 15 years researching and writing the book, which covers his home town from the Neolithic Age to the present day.

“When I retired from teaching in 2006, I was looking for something to do to fill in my spare time. Pat O’Neill from the Carlow Historical and Archaeological Society (CHAS) suggested that I might do some scribbling, but I needed to find something to scribble about!” joked Jim.

Jim, a history teacher, used his skills and love of his subject to do a deep dive into Hacketstown’s past. Over the years, he would have had articles published in the CHAS journal ***Carloviana***, which he has also edited.

Still serving on the society’s committee of management and as a member of the editorial sub-committee, he was awarded honorary life membership of the society in June, in recognition of his services to the promotion of local history.

During the last year, however, Jim focussed on “filling in the gaps” in information in his research on Hacketstown and concentrated on pulling all his knowledge together in one book.

The resulting tome is ***Hacketstown: A History*** and covers every topic from archaeology, the Normans, the Famine, revolutionary struggles and land wars to the poverty of the 1930s, sport and religion.

It was launched recently in Carlow Library, where it was warmly received. For Jim, who used to teach in Presentation de la Salle, Bagenalstown, it was a very proud occasion. He was accompanied by his wife Mary, son James, relatives and, of course, some friends and neighbours from Hacketstown.

“I’m very happy with it. We had a very successful launch … delighted!” said Jim.

The book, priced at €25, is available from the CHAS website and from Kennedy’s Pharmacy, Hacketstown and O’Toole’s Service Station in Tullow

By Elizabeth Lee https://carlow-nationalist.ie/2022/11/03/history-of-hacketstown-book-launched/