#OTD in Irish History – 14 January:

1753 – Death of George Berkeley, Irish philosopher and Anglican.

1775 – John Hely-Hutchinson, Provost of Trinity College, fights a duel with William Doyle over abusive newspaper articles. Doyle is ill and has to lean on a crutch at the duel; on being challenged he had initially complained of sore eyes, and ‘objected to stand merely to be shot at, without the power of retaliation’. Neither party is injured. One of the Provost’s sons wishes to fight a further duel with Doyle, but the authorities prevent this; they then go abroad and hold the duel, neither being injured.

1871 – Alexander Sullivan, barrister and last King’s Serjeant of Ireland, is born in Dublin; best known as the leading counsel for the defence in the 1916 treason trial of Roger Casement. Sullivan failed to win the case and Casement was sentenced to death.

1922 – A Provisional Government is set up to administer the handover from British rule to the new Irish Free State. The Cabinet is almost the same as that of the Irish Republic, with the exception of Éamon de Valera, Cathal Brugha and Austin Stack, who resign over the acceptance of the Treaty.

1922 – In Co Tyrone, members of the Monaghan GAA were arrested on their way to Derry. Among them were IRA volunteers, who carried plans to free IRA prisoners from Derry prison.

1937 – Irish Feminism Movement suffered greatly, as Éamon de Valera’s new constitution approved that ‘women’s place’ was in the home.

1961 – Death of stage, film and television actor, Barry Fitzgerald. Born William Joseph Shields in Walworth Road, Portobello, Dublin. He is the older brother of Irish actor Arthur Shields. He went to Skerry’s College, Dublin, before going on to work in the civil service, while also working at the Abbey Theatre. By 1929, he turned to acting full-time. He was briefly a roommate of famed playwright Sean O’Casey and starred in such plays as O’Casey’s Juno and the Paycock and the premiere of The Silver Tassie.

1965 – Talks between Seán Lemass, Taoiseach, and Terence O’Neill, Northern Ireland Prime Minister, take place in Belfast.

1970 – RUC officers began to patrol the Falls Road area of Belfast for the first time since August 1969.

1973 – Two RUC officers were killed in Derry by a booby-trap bomb attached to their car by the IRA. A third RUC officer was killed in a land mine attack near Cappagh, Co Tyrone.

1979 – There was a meeting between Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Roy Mason, and Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs, M. O’Kennedy, in London.

1986 – Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Tom King, said that the forthcoming Westminster by-elections, brought about in protest to the Anglo-Irish Agreement (AIA), would not change the government’s support for the Agreement.

1992 – Birth of footballer, Robbie Brady, in Dublin. He plays as a winger and a left-back for English club Norwich City and the Republic of Ireland national team.

1994 – President of Sinn Féin, Gerry Adams, stated in an Irish Times article that he could not move without clarification of the Downing Street Declaration (DSD). British Prime Minister, John Major, told John Hume, then leader of the SDLP, that the DSD spoke for itself.

1996 – Sinn Féin again stated that it thought the idea of a new elected assembly at Stormont was a “non-runner”.

1997 – The Lord Chancellor’s office was criticised for refusing to answer a parliamentary question about whether or not Northern Ireland Chief Justice, Lord Carswell, was a member of the Orange Order or the Free Masons.

1997 – Justice Minister in the Republic of Ireland, Nora Owen, ordered that James Corry should be released from custody. Corry had been arrested following an extradition request by a court in Germany on matters related to the bombing at the British Army barracks in Osnabreuck, Germany, on 28 June 1996.

1997 – Death of Cavan O’Connor. He was an Irish tenor and a variety artist, and spent most of his time performing on stage.

1998 – A uniformed RUC officer was shot in the chest at close range by a female member of the British Army who was travelling in plain clothes in an unmarked vehicle. An RUC patrol spotted two cars being driven in a suspicious manner in a Catholic area of north Belfast. The two cars drove off and the RUC patrol gave chase. One of the cars crashed at the junction of Crumlin Road and Antrim Road. As the RUC officer approached the vehicle he was shot and seriously injured. Sinn Féin described the incident as sinister.

1999 – Three Russian-manufactured heavy machine guns were found on farmland at Blackstaff, five miles from Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan, and were believed to be part of the IRA’s arsenal.

2000 – Unemployment drops to its lowest level in 19 years.

2000 – Unionist politicians are furious after Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams claims that there could be a united Ireland by the year 2016, the centenary of the Easter Rising.

2000 – Eco Warriors and the Green Party meet with members of Wicklow County Council in a last-ditch attempt to get the local authority to abandon its controversial road widening scheme in the Glen of the Downs.

2002 – Increased security measures were put in place in north Belfast by the PSNI and the British Army. The move followed death threats made by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) against Catholic teachers, and other Catholic employees of all schools, which was made on Friday 11 January 2002. The threat was extended to include Catholic postal workers following the killing of Danny McColgan on 12 January 2002. Frank Bunting, Northern Secretary of the Irish National Teachers Organisation (INTO) and Chairman of the Teachers’ Council, was interviewed on BBC Radio Ulster and called for the immediate lifting of the threats. The PSNI arrested two men in connection with the killing of McColgan. The two were released without charge on Tuesday 15 January 2002.

2002 – Martin McGuinness, Education Minister, held a meeting with representatives of teaching unions and education officials to discuss what he called the ‘unacceptable’ threat against Catholic teachers and school staff. David Cargo, Chief Executive of the Belfast Education and Library Board, and Donal Flanagan, Chief Executive of the Council for Catholic Maintained Schools, also attended the meeting. David Trimble (UUP), First Minister, and Mark Durkan (SDLP), Deputy First Minister, called for a lifting of the threats against Catholic teachers and Catholic postal workers.

Photo: Saul Abbey, Downpatrick, Co Down, Captive Landscapes by Stephen Emerson

#irishhistory #ireland #irelandinspires

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