Over the years Monkstown Quakers have been involved with charitable works both locally and in a wider context. Some of the work is shown on this panel, though it would not be possible to list every facet of the work carried out by individuals or committees. Perhaps the work for which Quakers are best remembered is the relief during the great famine. The Central Relief Committee of the Society of Friends included several Quakers from Monkstown and Blackrock including Jonathan Pim, one of the Secretaries to the committee and James Perry, treasurer. Others were Edward Alexander, Edward Barrington, Henry Perry, James Pim junior and Thornas Pim. Henry Perry was involved with the clothing committee and the soup kitchen in the city centre and was one of several Irish Quakers to die during the famine.

Plaque at Monkstown Meeting-House
Plaque at Monkstown Meeting-House

Monkstown Quakers were also active locally, as the area was not immune from suffering during the famine. Clothing was distributed by Susanna Pim, while lsabelle Pim was involved with the Kingstown Industrial Society which supplied new nets to fishermen. Food was also distributed by Mary Greenwood Pim and by Ruth Pim of the liberty Infant School. In the rural areas the Moss family was distributing aid in Kilteman and the Barringtons near Bray.

A Quaker Soup Kitchen during the Famine
A Quaker Soup Kitchen during the Famine

A plaque at the meeting house in Monkstown commemorates a soup kitchen run from there. Relief work began again in 1862-63 when another famine brought hardship.

Later in the 19th century Quakers like Frederic Pim were active in the Dublin Sanitary Association which successfully campaigned for measures to improve the health of the city through better hygiene, elimination of health hazards, improved housing and, ultimately, the provision of a proper sewerage system for the city.

Two Quakers, John R Wigham and Thornas Pim junior were amongst the trustees who acquired Killiney Hill for use as a public park in 1887.

During the 20th century Quakers in Monkstown were involved in organisations such as the Missionary Helpers Union, which provided supplies of materials such as bandages to overseas missions. At home the Friends Meeting House at Monkstown was used to provide classes for local people, including literacy, with a lending library, practical classes teaching manual skills.


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