newsDenis Waterford 9105453

Mayors’ Treasury at City Hall in Ireland’s oldest city, ‘Veðrafjǫrðr’, Waterford.

The Mayors’ Treasury, in the foyer of City Hall, celebrates the fact that we are the very proud inheritors of one of the oldest civic institutions in Europe, with a civic administration that stretches back to the late 12th century and indeed to the very foundation of the city of Waterford by Viking raiders and traders in the 10th century.

Twenty-three select objects – the earliest from 1080 and the most recent a Waterford Glass piece given to Mayor ‘Cha’ O’Neill – trace the mayoralty and the evolution of democratic parliamentary and local government through the centuries.

Dramatically-lit panels list the 650 mayors of Waterford up to the present day since the first known in 1284-85, Roger le Lom.

The centrepiece of the exhibition is the historic Mayor’s Chair. Made from a piece of American oak from the very first bridge across the River Suir in Waterford, this chair is the perfect photo opportunity!

Also honoured here in the exhibition in City Hall is John J. Hearne, the man who drafted the 1937 Constitution. He was born in William Street and his father served as mayor. John J. Hearne went on to serve as Ireland’s ambassador to the United States of America from 1950-1960 and it was he who began the custom of presenting the American president with a bowl of shamrock on St. Patrick’s Day!

You can read more about John J. Hearne here: