Who is Mother Jones? This was the first question that La Niña asked when we passed the sign on the street. Is she a nun? A valid question given we just spent a significant amount of time looking at church architecture.

No. Mother Jones is a labour activist born in Cork in the 1800s. She was a seamstress who later spoke out against lax child labour laws. She helped organize unions and win rights for factory and mine workers and may have known one of our relatives from Cork who (according to family hearsay) died in a fire in 1911 in New York.

Cork is a city that’s recently seen an upswing in the number of underground markets and vintage clothes sellers. We’d already experienced the stores in the English Market. Given the kinda-sorta tieback to one of our older unsolved family mysteries, we decided to pop in to the market to see what they had to offer.

It was a Saturday, which meant live music played while we perused the market’s vintage knickknacks, crafts, books, old cameras, records, furniture, clothing, games, and my all time favourite: handmade scarves. This particular market is less than a year old (opened August 2012) and still had a feeling of fresh excitement about it.

The entrance to the flea market can be found on York Street, just a short distance up the hill from McCurtain Street.