#OTD in Irish History – 5 July:

1581 – The Wexford Martyrs were Matthew Lambert, Robert Myler, Edward Cheevers, Patrick Cavanagh and two unknown individuals. In 1581, they were found guilty of treason for aiding in the escape of James Eustace, 3rd Viscount Baltinglass and refusing to take the Oath of Supremacy which declared Elizabeth I of England to be the head of the Church. On 22 September 1992 Pope John Paul II proclaimed a representative group from Ireland as martyrs and beatified them.

1790 – The Irish mail coach makes its first run from Dublin to Waterford. A twice-weekly stage-coach service operated between Dublin and Drogheda to the north, Kilkenny to the south and Athlone to the west as early as 1737 and for a short period from 1740, a Dublin to Belfast stage-coach existed. In Winter, this route took three days, with overnight stops at Drogheda and Newry. In Summer, travel time was reduced to two days. In 1789 mail coaches began a scheduled service from Dublin to Belfast They met the mail boats coming from Portpatrick in Scotland at Donaghadee, in Co Down. By the mid-19th century, most of the mail coaches in Ireland were eventually out-competed by Charles Bianconi’s country-wide network of open carriages, before this system in turn succumbed to the railways.

1798 – United Irishmen Rebellion: Rebels break camp and march north. They collide with a government force led by General Duff. They retreat south and turn to fight Duff at Ballygullen, near Craanford. The battle is indecisive but with three other Government columns converging on them, the rebels divide into two columns and retreat south. The smaller column moves west and into the hills near Carnew. It eventually makes its way to Glenmalure where it joins up with a group of Wicklow rebels. The main column retreats south to Carrigrew; that evening it marches north and camps in the Wicklow Mountains.

1812 – Frederick Maning, judge and writer among the Maori, is born in Johnville, Co Dublin.

1828 – Daniel O’Connell wins the Clare election.

1838 – The Board of Trinity College decrees the establishment of a Chair of Irish.

1880 – George Bernard Shaw, 23, quits his job at the Edison Telephone Company in order to write.

1922 – End of the fighting in Dublin The remainder of Oscar Traynor’s Anti-Treaty force in O’Connell street either slips away or surrenders. Anti-Treaty Dublin forces re-group in Blessington.

1922 – A leading figure in the Anti-Treaty IRA who had refused to surrender, Cathal Brugha, appeared from the doorway of the Hammam Hotel, revolver in each hand, and was hit by a sniper’s bullet from the Findlater’s building. He would die two days later.

1922 – The fighting In Dublin has cost sixty-five combatants killed, of whom 16 are government troops and 49 are Anti-Treaty IRA men, and 280 wounded of whom 122 are Free State soldiers and 158 are Republicans. The civilian casualties are thought to comprise over 250 killed and injured.

1922 – Republicans abandon Boyle in Roscommon when Seán Mac Eoin arrives with Free State troops and an 18-pounder gun.

1922 – A battle takes place in Abbeyleix, Co Laois. Vol. Christopher McGlynn of the Free State army is killed by a sniper’s bullet.

1922 – A firefight takes place between 200 Free State troops and 30 Anti-Treaty fighters at Curraghtown, Co Meath. One man on either side is killed before a priest arranges a truce and the republicans surrender. They are held in Trim and Dundalk gaols.

1936 – Brendan Halligan, economist, Labour politician and Europhile, is born in Dublin.

1950 – Birth of crime journalist, Veronica Guerin, in Dublin.

1962 – The Late Late Show, the world’s longest-running chat show by the same broadcaster, airs on RTÉ One for the first time.

1970 – At approximately nine in the morning the Falls Road curfew was lifted after a march by women had breached the British Army cordon. The women, mainly from the Andersonstown area of west Belfast, had brought supplies of basic foodstuff and marched to the Falls area. The British soldiers initially tried to hold back the women but were forced to let them through; so ending the curfew.

1972 – Two Protestant brothers were found shot dead outside of Belfast. There was speculation that they were killed by Loyalists because they had Catholic girlfriends.

1973 – Birth of singer-songwriter, Róisín Murphy, in Co Wicklow. She first became known in the 1990s as one-half of the UK trip hop duo Moloko with her partner Mark Brydon. After the breakup of Moloko, Murphy embarked on a solo career, releasing her debut solo album, Ruby Blue, written and produced with experimental musician Matthew Herbert, to critical praise in 2005. Her second solo album, Overpowered, was released in 2007.

1979 – Birth of singer-songwriter, Shane Filan, in Co Sligo. He was one of the lead singers and frontman of boy band Westlife until the group disbanded in 2012. After the group disbanded, Filan released his debut solo album, You and Me, in 2013.

1988 – Patrick Ryan, a Catholic priest from Ireland, was arrested in Brussels. He was accused of providing support for the IRA.

1991 – Four suspected members of the IRA were acquitted in a court in Holland of charges related to the killing of two Australian tourists in Roermond in May 1990.

1993 – U2 releases “Zooropa” worldwide, except in North America which will get the album a day later.

1998 – Drumcree conflict: the annual Orange Order march was prevented from marching through the nationalist Garvaghy area of Portadown. Security forces and about 10,000 loyalists began a standoff at Drumcree church. During this time, loyalists launched 550 attacks on the security forces and numerous attacks on Catholic civilians. On 12 July, three children were burnt to death in a loyalist petrol bomb attack. This incident brought an end to the standoff.

1998 – All bus services in Belfast are suspended as riots spread across the city.

1999 – Six RUC officers were reported to have been injured in clashes with Loyalists near the mainly Nationalist Garvaghy Road, Portadown, Co Armagh. RUC officers had earlier arrested four men from east Belfast after the discovery of pickaxe handles, wire cutters, petrol, and combat clothing in a car in Portadown shortly after 3.00pm.

2000 – Storms cause tens of thousands of pounds worth of damage and leave thousands of homes without power.

2000 – The British Army erected a large steel barrier across the Drumcree road where the RUC had come under attack from Loyalist rioters over the previous three nights. The structure, 20ft high and 30ft wide, was made up of huge steel containers filled with concrete and topped with barbed wire and had been put in place by Army engineers.

2001 – A two-year project to transcribe the official records of Dáil debates since 1919 is completed; the entire archive is available at oireactas.ie

2002 – A new EU survey shows that electricity costs for the Irish consumer are among the cheapest in Europe, but gas users are paying some of the highest rates.

2002 – Over €2 billion is wiped off the value of companies on the Irish stock exchange as markets around the world continue to see sharp falls amid concerns about improper accounting standards.

2015 – Kathleen Snavely, oldest Irish person in history passed away. Kathleen Snavely was born in Feakle, Co Clare and died in New York state at the age of 113, attributed her long life to hard work, love, family and the odd Manhattan cocktail.

Photo: Mussenden Temple, Castlerock, Coleraine, Co Derry

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