Baby birth tag appeal by bookshop owner goes nationwide

By David Looby

Book shop owner Conor Dervan. Far left: the birth tag.
Book shop owner Conor Dervan. Far left: the birth tag.
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A New Ross book shop has shot to national prominence after it issued an appeal to reunite the owner of a baby tag found inside the pages of one of its books, with its owner.

The mysterious child was a girl born weighing 8 lb 2 ounces on March 24, 1977, at 6.35 p.m. Her surname is O'Brien and she would have turned 40 on March 24 last.

Conor Dervan of New Ross Bookshop on John Street posted an appeal on Facebook earlier this month, and now the story has gone viral. Conor said: 'The post has been seen more than 70,000 times, shared more than 500 times and been picked up on by several sites and even by the Irish Post who have tried to jog the memories of the Irish community in the UK.

You find all sorts in books, letters, appointments, religious relics, declarations of love of the "Mary Loves John 4eva" variety and then you find things that really should be returned to the owner.'

He said the baby birth tag fell out of a book in the storeroom last week. 'It's the tag they used to put on newborn babies in hospitals back in the day. It obviously was used as a bookmark and then misplaced. We reckon the owner would love to get it back, be it the mother, father or baby O'Brien herself. We have little to go on but with the help of the internet anything is possible. Have you a forty year old friend called O'Brien? Do you work with a forty year old woman called O'Brien?'

'We think someone would love to get this back. Any help is appreciated like sharing with any O Brien friends etc. We are aware its possible baby O'Brien has passed away over the years, but even if that's the case this may bring a smile of memory to a loved one's face. We know it's a long shot especially as we have picked up books all over the country over the last few years but nothing ventured, nothing gained.'

Wexford People

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