My Treasure – Mary Ann McIllhatton

My Treasure – Mary Ann McIllhatton

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‘Leather handbag made by my uncle James’ ‘There is a great tradition of trades and craftsmen in my family. Uncle James was a cobbler but he was also very talented at leather work. The Crawford Brothers in Coleraine supplied him with his leather. James made my first pair of sandals but he also made a beautiful handbag for his first cousin Maureen for her wedding day. Her initials are inscribed into the back of the bag. As the bag was made during the War, leather was scarce so James used an old worn belt to finish the bag and to create the strap. I like this object because it shows the creative streak in our family, we’re wile handy’. Story written by Mary Ann McIIhatton, Cargan and member of Glenravel Young at Heart