Kilt Pin & Insignia

In Attire

When my family came to this country in the mid-20th century from Ireland they, like many others, did so without looking back, without seeing their families again, and without visiting their homes ever again. This gradual disaffiliation means that it can be hard for my family to connect to our roots. But on my mom’s side we have a couple of objects belonging to my great-grandfather, Louis Noble, which help to memorialize the traditions of the generations that have passed. Louis Noble was born in Shenley, England in 1886, and one of his more notable characteristics is the fact that he was a famous bagpiper, winning the National Bagpiping Championships of Ireland in 1910 and 1914. He also played the pipes for and worked as the Pipe Instructor in the Irish Republican Army’s Pipe and Whistle Brigade. He would wear traditional kilts when playing, and although his kilts and bagpipes were lost in a fire years ago, we still have the engraved kilt pin he used and a patch from his playing jacket depicting our family crest. Family usually determines a large portion of your personal identity, and although I was always surrounded by an incredible amount of love and support, I have always wished for a larger family network. The Irish have never lacked an incentive to tell stories, and having these real world objects, my great-grandfather’s kilt pin and insignia, helps to reinforce the historical and personal reality of our family history.

Place(s): Ireland
Year: 1914

– Claire Lynch

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant