This is a medium sized blue grocery bag used in the family grocery shop of Edward Duggan at 43/44 Ballybricken Waterford. Duggan was a grocery owner who was also politically active in Waterford and environs during the second half of the 19th Century.
To promote his political views he used this grocery/tea bag. The bag comprises a central portrait of two nationalist M.P’s, ”Blennerhasset ” and ”Martin”.
Their image is printed within a shamrock wreath, harps and a round tower and with the slogan ”Home Rule” above the images.
The two nationalist politicians depicted on this bag are Rowland Ponsonby Blennerhassett KC, JP (22 July 1850 – 7 April 1913). He entered the House of Commons as an Irish M.P. as a result of a bi-election in 1872. He was a member for Kerry.
Secondly, John Martin (8 September 1812 – 29 March 1875). Martin was Irish nationalist activist and a supporter of the Young Irelanders. However, as his career progressed his political views moved away from the more violent approach to non-violent alternatives such as support for tenant farmers’ rights and Home Rule. He was an M.P. for Meath from 1871 to 1875.
It is most likely that this bag was produced circa 1871/72 at the time of general elections or perhaps the bi election of 1872.
This blue bag is in excellent condition and measures 25cms X 16cms