Laying the foundation stone of the Carnegie Library

January 18th, 1909.

The ceremony of formally laying the foundation stone of the Carnegie Library occurred on January 18th 1908, on Monday at 12.30 p.m., at St. John’s Quay. It was performed by the Hon. Otway Cuffe whose term of office as Mayor of Kilkenny expired on the previous Friday. The contract for the work has been secured by Messrs. W.K. Cleere and Son, Kilkenny. The design of the building was the result of an open competition won by Tyars and Jago, Dame Street, Dublin and Messrs. E.S. Lowry and Son, Kilkenny. T.W.O. Hanrahan , vice-president of the Gaelic League placed a bottle beneath the foundation stone that contained the days proceedings in the Irish Language. Captain Cuffe was presented with a costly silver trowel by Miss Francis M. Cleere, youngest daughter of contractor, Mr. W.K. Cleere. The trowel bore the following inscription ‘presented to Capt. The Hon. Otway Cuffe, Mayor of Kilkenny, 1907-08 on the occasion of laying the foundation stone of the Carnegie Free Library, Kilkenny Jan. 18th, 1909, by the contractors, W.K. Cleere and Son, Builders, Kilkenny. Otway Cuffe was Mayor of Kilkenny from 1907 – 1908. He was the brother of the 4th Earl of Desart, (Lady Desart’s husband) He assisted Lady Desart in building Kilkenny Woollen Mills, Desart Hall, Talbot’s Inch housing and the Kilkenny Woodworkers. He was a Theosophist and had being influenced by the ideas of William Morris whom he met in Iceland, while travelling there. He was married to Elizabeth St. Aubyn in 1891 and resided in Sheestown House, Sion Road, Kilkenny. He died in Freemantle, Australia 1n 1912 and was buried there.

previousPrevious - Andrew Carnegie
Next - Lady Desart's Speech at the Library Openingnext