Bishop William O'Higgins

Bishop William O’Higgins (1794 – 1853)

Although he was one of the leading Irish Catholic churchmen of his time, William O’Higgins died in seclusion, broken by the sufferings of his people in the Great Famine – even the site of his grave in the crypt of St Mel’s Cathedral in  Longford is uncertain – and was mainly brought back to public notice in a lecture given in 2016 by Fr Liam Courtney of Clonmacart to the Longford Historical society.

After that, Drumlish Heritage and History Society were intent in honouring him in his native place, and the splendid statue by the internationally acclaimed sculptor, Dony Mac Manus, was installed in front of St Mary’s church, Drumlish. There were two unveilings: the first, on a beautiful day in September 2020, when attendance was limited by Covid restrictions, and the second, more formal one, on 28 August 2021, presided over by William O’Higgins’ successor as Bishop of Ardagh, Francis Duffy.

Among the attendance were relatives of Bishop O’Higgins (Mary McDermott GGG/Niece and her sons Alex and Seán).

Alex, Mary and Sean

Further information about the Bishop was published in booklet form and is available in local libraries. A video produced by Longford Heritage & Archives is available on YouTube entitled: The Remarkable Bishop William O’Higgins at text by Seán Murphy and voice-over by Annette Kane.
Bishop Francis Duffy

Bishop Francis Duffy

Committee Members, Public Representatives and Clergy

Committee Members, Funders and Clergy