Current writers inspired by Sam Henry’s archives

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Writers’ Groups from Flowerfield and Ballymoney have used Sam Henry’s archive to inspire a new collection of poetry and prose.

His fascinating material, including objects, documents, books, diaries, letters and

photographs, was gathered during his work as a Pensions and Excise Officer which

took him all over Northern Ireland during the early part of the 20th century.

Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council’s Museums Service has worked with

the Writers’ Groups on the new project.

Their poems and short items of prose were unveiled during a special event held in Flowerfield Arts Centre on September 28.

The evening also featured a performance of some of Sam Henry’s songs by folk singer Len Graham.

Sam Henry was born in 1878 in Coleraine. He was an avid folklorist, historian,

photographer, ornithologist, naturalist, genealogist and musician.

Through his work he formed relationships with an older generation and recorded aspects of their lives

that are now all but forgotten.

“In my contact with the old, who have all now passed away,” he wrote.

“I had the rare privilege of sharing their folk lore and their old songs.”

The new pieces of writing will feature in an exhibition in Coleraine Museum at Coleraine Town Hall in November.

They will also be made available on the NI Archive website –