On-site Friday thru Sunday: William P. Cahill, Thatcher Extraordinaire
William Cahill was born in Ireland and raised on the west coast in the town of Galway. As is common for many ancient Irish crafts, William has had the privilege to work under many Irish Master Thatchers and seanachie (raconteurs, storytellers) during his 5 year apprenticeship. He honed his skill of many traditional thatching techniques from all over Ireland. William had the honor of working and observing the craft of thatching with a local roof thatcher on Padraic Pearse’s cottage in Rosmuc, Connemara Co. Galway. Padraic Pearse was a school teacher, writer, orator, Patriot, 1916 Leader.
William worked with and learned from his good friend the late great English Master Thatcher Peter Brockett, who was the head of thatch training school for the English Thatchers Association. He also traveled to England and Holland to learn other European thatching techniques.
William is always eager to work with new materials and learn new thatching techniques, which he has continued to expand his thatching repertoire by travelling to Asia and Africa.
William was personally honored by a reading of The Thatcher by the late Nobel Laureate Poet Seamus Heaney. He received a signed copy of the poem after the reading’s completion.
William Cahill met the only thatcher working in the United States since the 1950s, he was none other than Peter Slevin Master Thatcher from county Donegal. He became William’s mentor and was instrumental in advising that he work on the prestigious Jamestown church project. William was sponsored by the Smithsonian Institute.
William will be presenting in the Cultural area all weekend. See video of his story: William Cahill