Mary Ann 250 – Online History Talks

We have received information from Clifton House about an upcoming series of talks.

From 10th June 2021 to the 14th July 2021, Clifton House in Belfast, along with our partners, will run a series of unique free events to celebrate the life, legacy and relevance today of Mary Ann McCracken, on what would have been her 250th birthday.  

Mary Ann McCracken (1770-1866) was born and lived in Belfast. In life and in history she was often overshadowed by her brother, executed United Irishman Henry Joy McCracken. Mary Ann, like many other remarkable women of her time, were often written out of history. However recently her name and her achievements are becoming more well known. Mary Ann was an abolitionist, social reformer and activist who fought for the rights of women and championed the disadvantaged at both home and abroad. She lived a long life that encompassed the most turbulent years of Irish history. Her radical, humanitarian zeal and generous strength of character were indefatigable, and her contribution to Belfast life is still felt and celebrated today.

Mary Ann McCracken 250 will launch on the 10th June with guest speaker Cathryn McWilliams presenting her doctoral research into Mary Ann’s life. Other events include a discussion on ‘The Spirit of Inquiry and Age of Enlightenment’ organised by Reclaim the Enlightenment and the Frances Hutcheson Institute, and Mary Ann’s cultural endeavours are explored in talks hosted by Linen Hall Library. On her birthday, 8th July, there is a special event exploring ‘Who and what did Mary Ann fight for?’ examining the causes closest to her heart and their relevance today.

To see the full list of events and to register, visit


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