Irish History Podcast


Ireland's Alcatraz - the Story of Spike Island

Spike Island in Cork Harbour is often referred to as 'Ireland’s Alcatraz'. While this famous island prison began life as a monastery it was transformed into a fortress during the American Revolutionary War. However Spike island gained it's notorious reputation during the Great Hunger of the 1840s when a prison was opened in the fort.

This episode recorded on Spike island tells the story of Ireland’s Alcatraz…

I would like to thank the team on Spike Island for facilitating the recording of this episode. In particular I would like to thank Tom O’Neill for his time and expertise.

Sound by Kate Dunlea

Visit Spike Island:

If you want find out more about Spike Island these texts come highly recommended.

Spike Island: Saint Felons and Famine

Too beautiful for thieves and pickpockets: A history of the Victorian convict prison on spike island

Spike Island republican prisoners 1921

My exclusive Supporters Civil War Series with Dr Brian Hanley from Trinity College Dublin continues on Thursday. Episode II looks at Michael Collins and the Outbreak of the War. This is available on and Acast+.

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