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Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)


Pat Purcell Papers


Michael Snoddy

1909 - 1963


Michael Snoddy, 1909 - 1963.

Nationalist and Leinster Times, Jan. 1963.

Prominent Carlow Figure is dead.

The unexpected death on Saturday of Mr. Michael Snoddy, Centaur Street, Carlow, caused sincere regret in his native town, and over a very wide area in which he was known and respected.

A most successful business man, he combined remarkable intelligence with a forthright and colourful personality, and was a most efficient and helpful branch manager of the Equitable Insurance Company.

The late Mr. Snoddy was aged 53. The courage with which he faced and overcame recurring illnesses during a large portion of his life won him the greatest admiration. His lively sense of humour remained undimmed in all situations.

Born at Quinagh, Co. Carlow, he was educated at Carlow Christian Brother's School and at St. Patrick's Training College for Teachers in Drumcondra. In 1929 he began his teaching career at Carlow C.B.S and was later appointed Principal at Kildavin National School.

He returned to teach in Carlow, and was bereaved by the untimely death of his wife in 1941.

After a period of ill health he joined the staff of the New Ireland Assurance Company in 1944. Following another term in hospital he joined the Irish National Insurance Company and was later appointed Branch Manager of the Equitable Insurance Company.

The late Mr. Snoddy was a founder member of the Fianna Fail party and was later elected to the National Executive of the Fianna Fail Party. For many years he was secretary of the Carlow Feis committee and a member of Gaelic League Branch.

He was also Scoutmaster of the local troop for a time.

His family was closely associated with the Fight for Independence and were strongly nationalistic in their ideals. He was himself, a fluent Irish speaker and had a keen interest in Gaelic Literature and Culture.

An Appreciation (by Aidan Murray).

While Michael had carved out a highly successful career in the insurance world following his illness, and it is over twenty years since he resigned from Carlow C.B.S., to hundreds of his ex-pupils he is the teacher who stands out most vividly in their memories, and who is remembered still with affection and gratitude.

He treated every child as if he were his own son, and would not yield an inch where he felt there was any sense of injustice. His class was his kingdom; he worked himself unsparingly and defended his own brilliant and effective methods against charges of "deviation from the rule book" from inspectors who were inclined to stick to the "book".

They would all agree on his outstanding ability; but Michael could not be softened by praise. It is ironical that the very fluency and adaptability he preached in the 30s should slowly be adopted as the criterion of the 60s.

His sudden collapse shortly after the death of his wife shocked those of us who had been his school-friends and colleagues. It seemed inexplicable that a man never known to be ill, revelling in athletics, football, walking 10 or 12 miles with us of an afternoon, could be so stricken.

Talking to the late Dr. McMahon one day, I asked him could he give any explanation. He replied in one word: grief. And therein lies the key to Mick's complex character.

Behind that sturdy purposeful, rugged exterior there was the soul of the artist in its finest sense; the sensitivity and sensibility he covered up in bluntness and the brusque retort.

His love of Ireland, of its language, music, history and tradition were evident even as a schoolboy. As a teacher the twin threads of religion and patriotism infused every aspect of his work.

What can one say of his magnificent achievement in embarking on a new profession, and winning success which placed him in the forefront, not only in his district but against the whole national field.

Despite failing health in the last few years, he managed his office with the thoroughness and attention to detail which first brought him to prominence in the world of insurance.

But to many of us Michael will always be the teacher, for in adversity his iron will and the welfare and education of his young family were examples to us of how faith and trust in God can triumph. He must have been consoled that the talents they inherited had been so well used.

With the passing of men like Mick all of us of his generation die a little, too. Few of us could pass to our reward with so little to regret of our living. --- A.M.

A large cortege accompanied the remains to the Cathedral of the Assumption on Sunday evening and again at the funeral to St. Mary's Cemetery, Carlow, on Monday.

Members of the Irish National Teachers' Organisation were pallbearers and together with past and present members of Carlow Boy Scout Troop formed a guard of honour.

Chief mourners were, Mr. Oliver Snoddy (Padraigh O' Snodaigh) (son); Mrs Pauline Murphy and Miss Mary Snoddy (daughters); Thomas, John, and Sam Snoddy (brothers); Mrs Michael Purcell, Mrs Patrick Purcell, Mrs Patrick Jones, Mrs Bridie Goebel (sisters); Mrs Cliodhna Snoddy (daughter-in-law); Mr Donal Murphy (son-in-law); Fergus Snoddy (grandson) and numerous other relatives and friends. The cortege included a number of prominent people in public life and business.

Prayers at the graveside were said by Very Rev. M. Coughlin, Adm., assisted by Very Rev. J. Dunny, P.P. Tinryland and Rev. T. Waldron C.C. and Rev. J. O'Leary, C.C.

Source: Michael Purcell


Mrs. M (Minnie) Snoddy


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2001 Ireland Genealogy Projects, IGP TM

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