Boy 11963: How one child climbed out the other side of a brutal system

John Cameron’s memoir of his time in Artane Industrial School is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit

John Cameron: a devastating but ultimately life-affirming memoir


Boy 11963

By John Cameron with Kathryn Rogers

Hachette Books Ireland, €16.99

The number allocated to John Cameron when he entered Artane Industrial School in March 1944, at the age of eight, was 11963. The number has been ingrained in his memory, as he was beaten so badly for not remembering it that he still has the scars on his back and neck today.

By the time he walked through the doors of Artane, ...