Sweetman, Mary Agnes (Mai)
Date of Birth: 8th August 1921
Place of Birth: Littlegraigue, Duncormick, Co. Wexford
Date Interviewed: 24th March 2010
Summary: Mai Sweetman grew up in a thatched farmhouse. She describes the original mud floors and the open fire where the cooking was done. Mai says her father was a “self-made man” and that he was a “great farmer”. Apart from having a working farm they also had a grocery and hardware store at the house and Mai helped in the shop after school. Her father had a windcharger installed on the roof and this provided power for lighting. Mai talks of her school days and remembers the dry toilet which was shared by boys and girls. As the dividing wall was quite low you were in danger of a warm shower if any of the boys aimed deliberately high! Their farmhouse burned down in 1949 but no one was injured as the fire happened during daylight hours. In August of that same year Mai married local man Arthur Sweetman and because of the fire they had to spend their wedding night sleeping in one of the grain lofts! Arthur purchased a nearby farm where they renovated the old house. They had six children. Mai is a lifelong member of the Irish Countrywomen’s Assoiciation. She continues to cook on the AGA cooker she and Arthur bought in 1957 for £150 from Joyces in Wexford.