The then US president Bill Clinton with Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams in the Oval Office of the White House on March 17th, 2000. The success of the Northern Ireland peace process was one of Clinton’s greatest achievements. Photograph: William Vasta/AFP/Getty Images

The journalistic dictum that the more comfortable you make people, the more they will reveal applies to the world of academic historical research t(...)

 President Michael D Higgins and his wife, Sabina, with former US ambassador Dan Rooney at a reception for members of the diplomatic corps at Áras an Uachtaráin last year. Photograph: Alan Betson

The only time there was a longer delay in the appointment of a new US ambassador to Ireland was in 1935, and then the official title of the position w(...)