#OTD in Irish History – 14 December:

1585 – Death of Nicholas Walsh, Bishop of Ossory. The son of Patrick Walsh, Bishop of Waterford, Nicholas Walsh was consecrated a priest in 1567. He introduced prayer-books and catechisms printed in Irish. He was appointed Chancellor of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in 1571. Starting in 1573, Walsh worked on translating the New Testament into Irish. Walsh’s efforts came to an end when he was murdered in Kilkenny in 1585. He was succeeded in this effort by John Kearney. The work was subsequently completed by Uilliam Ó Domhnaill (William Daniell).

1715 – Irish-born Thomas Dongan, soldier and colonial governor of New York, dies in Ireland.

1791 – Birth of poet and clergyman, Charles Wolfe, in Blackhall, Co Kildare.

1803 – Rebel leader Michael Dwyer, whose guerrilla attacks had maddened British colonial authorities since 1798, surrenders.

1822 – A ‘bottle riot’ takes place on this date. Missiles are thrown at the vice-regal box during a performance in a Dublin theatre as a result of Wellesley banning celebrations in memory of William III.

1831 – A Proctor and 13 Constables are killed by tithe protesters at Carrickshock, Co Kilkenny.

1900 – Maud Gonne and Paul Kruger (former president of the Transvaal) are offered the freedom of Limerick by the city council.

1918 – The UK general election was called immediately after the Armistice with Germany which ended World War I. The election was also noted for the dramatic result in Ireland, which showed clear disapproval towards government policy. The Irish Parliamentary Party were almost completely wiped out by the hardline Sinn Féin republicans. In Ireland, the Irish Parliamentary Party lost almost all their seats, most of which were won by Sinn Féin under Éamon de Valera. Sinn Féin, won 73 of 105 Irish MP seats. Winners included, Constance Markievicz, who became the first woman elected to the Parliament of England. The Dáil first convened on 21 January 1919, which marked the beginning of the Irish War of Independence.

1920 – Passenger services suspended on the Cavan and Leitrim Railway, until 1921, due to the refusal of drivers and enginemen to carry the Black and Tans on trains at Mohill and Ballinamore, leading to the arrest and internment of railway employees.

1920 – Attack on Auxiliaries at Ballsbridge Post Office by members of the 3rd Battalion Dublin Brigade IRA.

1921 – Dáil Éireann begins Anglo-Irish treaty debate.

1955 – Ireland was admitted to the United Nations along with 16 other sovereign states. Frederick Boland was appointed as its first ambassador.

1958 – Birth of Peter ‘Spider’ Stacy. He is an English musician. He is one of the founding members of The Pogues.

1960 – Aer Lingus entered the jet age when it received three Boeing 720 for use on the New York route and the newest destination, Boston.

1965 – An Anglo-Irish free trade agreement is signed; the UK and Ireland undertake to establish a free trade area by the mid-1970s.

1971 – A boy aged 16 was shot dead by British soldiers in Coalisland, Co Tyrone.

1972 – Birth of actor, Jason Barry, in Dublin. Best known for his portrayal of Tommy Ryan in the 1997 blockbuster Titanic. He also starred in The Still Life for which he won numerous awards. Jason has recently had a recurring role as a member of the Continuity IRA in the 3rd and 4th Seasons of the Irish crime series Love/Hate.

1973 – Birth of former professional basketball player, Pat Burke, in Dublin. Burke (whose family moved to the US when he was three years old). He became the first Irish born player in NBA history when he signed a contract with the Orlando Magic in 2002. He was a co-captain of the Irish national basketball team and also represented his country at the World University Games.

1974 – The IRA carried out a gun attack on a joint British Army and RUC foot patrol near Forkhill, Co Armagh. An RUC officer died at the scene and a soldier died on 30 December 1974 from injuries received.

1974 – The IRA carried out a gun attack on the Churchill Hotel in Portman Square, London. Three people were slightly injured by flying glass.

1977 – Paul Harman (27), a member of the British Army, was shot dead by the IRA while driving an unmarked car through the Turf Lodge area of Belfast.

1982 – Garrett FitzGerald succeeds Charles Haughey as Taoiseach.

1982 – The Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) announced that party members would not take their seats on the Northern Ireland Assembly scrutiny committees until the powers of the Speaker were clarified. This boycott continued until February 1983.

1991 – The IRA exploded a number of incendiary devices in a shopping centre in London.

1993 – Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Patrick Mayhew, revealed that he had offered to resign over the errors in the documents dealing with the British government’s contacts with the Republican movement. The documents were released on 29 November 1993.

1994 – British Prime Minister, John Major, announced a £73 million investment package for Northern Ireland. Major also said that “huge progress” would have to be made towards the destruction of IRA weapons before Sinn Féin could enter formal talks.

1995 – It was announced that the Crumlin Road Prison would close in the spring of 1996. The closure would result in the transfer of 250 prisoners to Maghaberry Prison.

1995 – Jack Charlton quits as Ireland manager.

1998 – Farmers are to be banned from feeding antibiotic enhanced animal feed to pigs and poultry amid fears that drug residues in meat are a health risk for humans.

1999 – At the Special Criminal Court in Dublin seven men were charged with possession of guns and explosives. The charges related to the arrest of men in Co Meath on 20 October 1999 at a “real” Irish Republican Army (rIRA) training camp.

2001 – Euro kits distributed by the Central Bank go on sale in post offices throughout the country. Demand for the packs, consisting of 19 coins and priced at £5 (€6.35), is brisk, with nearly all the big towns and cities selling out by evening.

2001 – Garda technical experts examine 180 rounds of ammunition found on the outskirts of Cork city which they believe may be connected to the Real IRA.

2013 – Death of actor, Peter O’Toole. Born in Connemara, Co Galway, he attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, and began working in the theatre, gaining recognition as a Shakespearean actor at the Bristol Old Vic and with the English Stage Company, before making his film debut in 1959.

2017 – The Irish Sign Language (ISL) Recognition Act is passed into legislation. ISL is used by roughly 5,000 deaf people in Ireland, as well as additional 40,000 family and friends of deaf people. The act enables deaf people to access public and private services, as well as information, in their own language.

Photo: ‘Bearnagh Mist’, View from the summit of Slieve Bearnagh, Mourne Mountains, Co Down, Hibernia Landscapes by Stephen Wallace

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