Tuesday, 30 August 2011

My email to the National League of the Blind Ireland

Dear Sir or Madam

I live in Birmingham in the UK and have for many years worked for user led disability organisations in the city. Last year I wrote a book about the history of the group I currently work for, Birmingham Disability Resource Centre (BDRC).

Just like NLBI, the BDRC is run by disabled people for disabled people.

It was quite a surprise for me therefore when I was researching my family tree to learn from family in Dublin that one of my ancestors, John McDonnell, was a blind person who was very active in the National League of the Blind in Ireland. He was also a Poor Law governor and a successful business man who ran a basket making factory in Dublin in the early 20th century.

I would love to find out more about John McDonnell and his involvement with NLBI and wondered if you keep any records about directors of the charity in the early 1900s or indeed anything about the history of the organisation which might help me to understand the context of the times in which Mr McDonnell and fellow blind activists were developing self help support services in Ireland.

I would be most grateful of any advice you can give me.

Yours faithfully

Peter Millington

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