FRANKFORT AVENUE WHERE I AND COUNTESS MARKIEVICZ ONCE LIVED
I attended national school in Donegal but I had to move to Dublin to attend secondary school so I lived with my grandmother for two years at her home on Frankfort Avenue. I really liked the area and always have.
The most outstanding house on the street is No 1 and my grandmother told me that it was owned by Cornelius Ryan.
Ryan (5 June 1920 – 23 November 1974) was an Irish-American journalist and author known mainly for writing popular military history. He was especially known for his histories of World War II events: The Longest Day: 6 June 1944 D-Day (1959), The Last Battle (1966), and A Bridge Too Far (1974).
Born and raised in Dublin, Ireland, he began working as a journalist in London in 1940. He became involved in covering World War II and travelled with troops in Europe. After the war, he covered the establishment of Israel. He immigrated to the United States in 1947 to work for Time. In 1951 Ryan became a naturalised US citizen and lived there for the remainder of his life.
You can imagine my surprise when I discovered, a few years ago, the house in question was once home to Constance Gore-Booth, who on her marriage to the Polish painter Count Markievicz adopted the title Countess Markievicz. In 1903 they moved into the villa on Frankfort Avenue, which was a wedding present from her mother. They lived there with the count’s son Stanislaus from a previous marriage, and their daughter Maeve. She was an artist, like her husband, and her studio built at the side of the house remained intact before it was destroyed by fire.
My grandmother would not have made such a mistake so I often wondered why she told me that the house was owned Cornelius Ryan … maybe she disapproved of the Countess.
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