Midwife Brigid Glenane, Claregalway, County Galway
Brigid Glenane was born Bridget Delia McGrath on 3rd May 1902 in Claregalway. Brigid came from a very learned house where there was huge emphasis on education and she attended Lackagh primary school. On June 13th 1938 she was accepted for a midwifery course at Holles Street Maternity Hospital, Dublin. There was no grant or financial support for this course thus she had to fund it herself.
Brigid returned to Galway and took a position in St.Theresa’s Galway and then onto St. Bride’s Salthill. She did regular relief work for a Dr. D’arcy’s wife on the islands and enjoyed her time there. Like most midwives she kept impeccable ledgers of her deliveries and often spoke of the poverty, the women recorded therein, endured during those years and the difficulties that faced them.
Brigid married John Glenane, went on to have her own family but continued working in a community post in the general Turloughmore and Claregalway areas. She always considered herself to be a fortunate midwife as all of her deliveries were live born babies. Brigid passed away in 2008 at the great age of 96.
You can click on the image to listen to Brigid’s daughter Vera, now Vera Mullins and living in Brierfield, talking about her mother’s work as a midwife.