Limerick’s 1973 Hurling Champions reunite for new exhibition "Limerick’s All-Ireland Glory 1887-2023"

  • JP MacManus, Mayor Mitchell and Zara Power holding the Liam McCarthy Cup in front of pop up banners. Pic Keith Wiseman
JP McManus, Gerald Mitchell, Mayor of City and County of Limerick and Dr Zara Power, Limerick Museum. Pic Keith Wiseman

Limerick Museum, in collaboration with Limerick GAA, is excited to announce the official opening of "Limerick’s All-Ireland Glory 1887-2023."

This exhibition, curated by Dr. Matthew Potter, Curator of Limerick Museum, and Meadhbh Nolan from Limerick Libraries, pays tribute to the rich history of Limerick's Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) and spotlights the iconic 1973 team on the 50th anniversary of their historic win. 

The exhibition, located at Limerick Museum, showcases a treasure trove of Limerick GAA memorabilia, offering a captivating journey through the annals of sporting excellence.

A particular focus is placed on the legendary 1973 Limerick hurling team who ended a 33-year All-Ireland drought for Limerick, making them eternal legends in the eyes of GAA enthusiasts. 

Eamon Cregan, Frankie Nolan and Richie Bennis have loaned their hurleys to the exhibit which also includes programmes from the 1973 final along with newspapers, hats, scrap books and other mementoes. 

Members of the team, including captain Eamon Grimes, were guests of honour at the opening of the exhibition. They were joined by the Chair of the limerick County Board, Seamus McNamara and JP McManus, who was appointed Honorary President of Limerick GAA earlier this year. 

The Liam McCarthy Cup which returned to Limerick for the fourth year in a row in July was on hand for the occasion.

Man and woman holding Liam McCarthy Cup in front of pop-up banners. Pic Keith Wiseman
Eamonn Grimes, Captain of the 1973 All Ireland Winning Team with his wife Helen. Pic Keith Wiseman

Mayor of the City and County of Limerick, Cllr Gerald Mitchell officially opened the exhibition saying:  

“The Liam McCarthy Cup is an almost permanent resident in Limerick in more recent years but we had to wait 45 years before its return in 2018. The victory in 1973 has lived long in the collective conscious of Limerick people and the team are truly legendary. This groundbreaking exhibition promises to be a source of inspiration and pride for all, celebrating Limerick's enduring legacy in the world of GAA.” 

The achievement of the 1973 team remains unparalleled, as they clinched Limerick's only Senior All Ireland title in 78 years, bridging the gap between 1940 and 2018. 

1973 All Ireland winning Captain, Eamon Grimes said:  

“This exhibition means so much to me and to all my old teammates from 1973 because it is a tribute that comes from the people of Limerick through the medium of Limerick City and County Council and Limerick Museum.” 

Chair of the Limerick County Board, Seamus McNamara thanked the museum staff for compiling the exhibition, saying:  

“The attention to detail is hugely impressive. This is a very fitting tribute to the achievement of the 1973 team. It gives an opportunity for the wider public to come in, view the artefacts and reflect on that very meaningful day in our history just over 50 years ago to the day on 2nd Sept 1973.”  

Two man holding the Liam McCarthy Cup in front of pop up banners. Pic Keith Wiseman
Seanus McNamara, Chairman of the County Board with Eamonn Grimes, Captain of the 1973 All Ireland winning Limerick Team. Pic Keith Wiseman

Dr Matthew Potter, Curator of Limerick Museum said:

“It is important to remember that in 1887, the Limerick County Board was established at a meeting in Limerick City Hall which was put at the disposal of the newly established GAA by then Mayor Francis A O’Keeffe. Thus began a wonderful and fruitful partnership between Limerick City and County Council and Limerick GAA, which, after nearly 140 years, is stronger than ever. Indeed, this exhibition represents the latest chapter in a long and successful partnership between the Council and Limerick GAA. Never in the 116 year history of Limerick Museum have we had an opening attended by so many household names, from the Liam McCarthy Cup and J P McManus to the legendary 1973 team.” 

The vision for the exhibition originated with Meadhbh Nolan, a dedicated member of Limerick Libraries, and daughter of Frankie Nolan from Patrickswell, who was part of the 1973 All-Ireland-winning team. Meadhbh's tireless efforts, particularly in documenting the 1973 final, have been instrumental in bringing the exhibition to life. 

An invaluable collection owned by the late Gerry Pigott of Ahane GAA, forms the core of the Limerick’s All-Ireland Glory 1887-2023 exhibition. 

Visit the exhibition up to October 31, 2023 Limerick Museum at Old Franciscan Friary, Henry Street, Limerick beside Dunnes Stores. V94 C7W1 

Four men holding the Liam McCarthy Cup in front of pop up banners. Pic Keith Wiseman
Dr Matthew Potter, Limerick Museum, Gerald Mitchell, Mayor of the City and County of Limerick, Walter Shannahan and Paul Foley, Limerick GAA. Pic Keith Wiseman

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Treaty Stone Limerick. Photo Piotr Machowczyk