Voices from the Camps
Interviews by Bill Meek (1987) and Joe Murray (2004)


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Sound Files


The voice of Irish Diaspora is receiving increasing attention in Australia, North America, England, and of course in Ireland. Thanks to the production efforts of Radio Telefis Éireann (RTÉ), the Irish Public Service Broadcasting Organisation, the voices of the Irish in Argentina were recorded in two opportunities. Bill Meek produced 'Neath the Southern Cross' in 1987, and Joe Murray 'The Argentina Connection' in 2004. Together with 'Thirty-Nine Leagues of Land', a TV documentary directed by Jim Fahy and aired by RTÉ in 2002, these documents represent an important audio-visual source of historical and linguistic information about the Irish in Argentina.

Bill Meek recorded the interviews during his trip to Buenos Aires city and province in May 1987. The programme was aired in eight sessions, between 5 September and 14 November 1987. A summary was broadcasted in 2001 under the title 'The Forgotten Colony.'


Recording in Argentina: 
a Broadcaster Looks Back

by Bill Meek

On his turn, Joe Murray's interviews were recorded in 2003, and his show 'The Argentina Connection' was aired on the evening of 17 March 2004, hours before the visit of the Irish President Mary McAleese to South America. About that evening Joe Murray wrote: 'I have never had so much reaction to any programme I ever did over a period of thirty-nine years. People here in Ireland were not aware of this very significant emigration. Also many people were delighted to hear that not all of our emigrants were poor and hungry but some were what we might call entrepreneurial, or economic migrants.' He justified the effort of his trip with 'the great privilege of meeting so many fine people and enjoying their hospitality, and mostly for the opportunity of putting the material into a permanent archive.'
Sound Files (MP3)*

Name or Details

Dinner at the Hurling Club of Buenos Aires (Bill Meek 1987)
55:61 sec. Listen
Dickie Kelly (Joe Murray 2004)
44:72 sec. Listen
Mrs. Sills of San Antonio de Areco I (Bill Meek 1987)
1:09:85 min. Listen
Mrs. Sills of San Antonio de Areco II (Bill Meek 1987)
 1:22:31 min. Listen
Anselmo Byrne (Bill Meek 1987)
1:33:28 min. Listen
Jimmy Ballesty (Joe Murray 2004)
1:07:70 min. Listen
Mrs. Clancy (Bill Meek 1987)
1:47:38 min. Listen
Mrs. Casey of Duggan Town (Bill Meek 1987)
 2:44:70 min. Listen
Eduardo A. Coghlan (Bill Meek 1987)
 1:44:35 min. Listen
Mrs. Mackay (Bill Meek 1987)
 2:09:77 min. Listen
Edmundo Moore (Bill Meek 1987)
 1:44:67 min. Listen
Hilda Sabato (Bill Meek 1987)
 0:48:69 min. Listen
Maria Elena Walsh (Bill Meek 1987)
1:54:59 min. Listen

* If you have problems with these files, save them to your disk and open them with your audio programme.


I am indebted to Bill Meek and Joe Murray for their efforts to record hundreds of hours of Irish-Argentine voices, and for their contributions to these pages. I am thankful to David Barnwell, Maire Ni Mhaidin Kiiamov, and Peter Ungphakorn, who provided valuable help with the transcriptions, and to Pedro Espinosa, who spent many hours working with the sound files. The original tapes and the authorisation to publish them were generously granted by Peter Feeney, Head of Public Affairs, and Adrian Moynes, Managing Director of Radio, Radio Telefís Éireann (RTÉ).

Audio Files © RTÉ - This page by Edmundo Murray © Irish Argentine Historical Society
Last Update: 2 July 2004


The Society for Irish Latin American Studies, 2005

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