In 1903 W.F. Dennehy, editor of the Irish Independent , called for an Exhibition on a new scale; one that would truly show Ireland's quality of produce and capability for trade. The Exhibition opened in 1907 and Dennehy edited an Official Record , a valuable document w housed in some of the city's libraries. The Exhibition attracted the public, the press and even the King, but little is kwn of it today. The Herbert Park pond remains, but any other evidence rests in libraries and postcard albums.Now, a century later, Ken Finlay has revived this momentous event, combining the Report with a modern, objective introduction. Finlay gives an entertaining commentary on those elements conveniently glossed over in the Official Report; he reveals that the sideshows attracted such attention that the organisers deliberately limited them, lest the 'artisan' classes spend more time laughing than learning! The Biggest Show in Town, with official Exhibition pictures, and images from the author's collection, is a splendid record of an event that remains unmatched in Ireland's history.
Ken Finlay grew up in Camden Street and now lives in Dun Laoghaire. A writer and photographer, he is a former Editor of the Southside People and continues to co-write the Local History column. This is his fourth book and the second with Nonsuch (Dublin Day by Day - 366 Days of Dublin History was published in 2005).