1713 – Henry Pyne, MP for Dungarvan, aged about 24 and the father of three children, is killed in a duel with Theophilus Biddulph at Chelsea Fields, London; Biddulph will later be convicted of manslaughter.
1790 – The Northern Whig Club is founded in Belfast.
1799 – William Dargan, railway engineer and philanthropist, is born in Carlow.
1800 – Execution of Roddy McCorley. He was arrested whilst trying to emigrate to America, having been betrayed by an informer, tried by court-martial in Ballymena and sentenced to be hanged near the Bridge of Toome. McCorley was an Irish Republican and Presbyterian from the civil parish of Duneane, Co Antrim. He was a member of the radical United Irishmen who took part in the Rebellion of 1798.
1830 – Whitley Stokes, jurist and Celtic scholar, is born in Dublin.
1882 – Birth of writer and journalist, Pádraic Ó Conaire, in Galway. His production was primarily in the Irish language.
1898 – Birth of Hugh O’Flaherty in Lisrobin, Kiskeam, Co Cork. He was an Irish Roman Catholic priest and senior official of the Roman Curia, and significant figure in Catholic resistance to Nazism. During World War II, he was responsible for saving 6,500 Allied soldiers and Jews.
1921 – An IRA column led by Sean Moylan ambushed an RIC patrol at Tureengariff Co Cork, two RIC men were killed and two rifles were taken.
1921 – Six IRA prisoners were shot in Cork.
1922 – Death of Eugene O’Neill’s mother Mary Ellen ‘Ella’ Quinlan. Ella married Kilkenny born actor James O’Neill in 1877.
1923 – Free State General Denis Galvin dies after the accidental explosion of grenade during a training exercise.
1929 – Poet John Montague, best known for his volume, The Rough Field, is born.
1932 – Noel Euchuria Cornelius Cantwell, an Irish cricketer and football player born in Co Cork. He was educated at the Roman Catholic Presentation Brothers College in Cork.
1932 – Chemist, Dr. James Drumm from Co Down, invented ‘the Drumm Traction Battery’ (zinc-nikelalkaline battery) that was successfully employed to power a suburb train from Inchicore to Portarlington and back on a single charge.
1933 – Birth of Noel Cantwell, captain of Manchester United and Irish international.
1938 – Alice Taylor, writer, is born near Newmarket, Co Cork.
1944 – John O’Shea, journalist, charity worker and founder of GOAL, is born in Limerick.
1955 – Premiere of Sean O’Casey’s play The Bishop’s Bonfire in Dublin.
1956 – Birth of Francis Hughes, an Irish volunteer in the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA). Hughes was the most wanted man in Northern Ireland until his arrest following an ambush by the Special Air Service (SAS) in which an SAS soldier was killed. At his trial he was sentenced to a total of 83 years imprisonment, and he died during the 1981 Irish hunger strike in Long Kesh prison.
1961 – Birth in Clones, Co Monaghan of Barry McGuigan, ‘The Clones Cyclone’, world featherweight boxing champion (WBA) 1985-86.
1969 – Terence O’Neill was re-elected as leader of the Unionist Parliamentary Party and thus was confirmed as Northern Ireland Prime Minister.
1971 – A British soldier died in Derry as a result of inhaling chemicals from fire extinguisers that were used to put out a fire inside the vehicle he was travelling in. The vehicle had been attacked with petrol bombs.
1973 – General election in the Republic leads to a Fine Gael-Labour coalition government; Liam Cosgrave becomes Taoiseach.
1985 – The Provisional Irish Republican Army carries out a mortar attack on the Royal Ulster Constabulary police station at Newry, Co Down, killing nine officers in the highest loss of life for the RUC on a single day.
1991 – Birth of actress, Sarah Bolger, in Dublin. She is best known for her roles in the films In America, Stormbreaker, and The Spiderwick Chronicles, as well as her award-winning role as Lady Mary Tudor in the TV series The Tudors, and for guest starring as Princess Aurora in Once Upon a Time.
1992 – The IRA exploded a bomb at London Bridge railway station in London and injured 28 people.
1993 – Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dick Spring, gave an interview to the BBC in which he stated that Articles 2 and 3 of the Irish Constitution were not ‘cast in bronze’.
British Prime Minister, John Major, and Taoiseach, John Bruton, held a summit meeting in London. In their Communique, the two Governments set a date (10 June 1996) for the start of all-party talks. It was announced that parties to the talks would have to agree to abide by the six ‘Mitchell Principles’ and there would be a period of ‘proximity’ talks to decide on an agenda and the administration of the process.
1998 – Death of one of TV’s best-loved comedy stars, Dermot Morgan, who played Father Ted.
1998 – President Mary McAleese, indicated that she would celebrate the two major holidays on the island of Ireland, St Patrick’s Day on 17 March and the Orange Order’s celebration of the victory at the Battle of the Boyne on 12 July. It was announced that parties would be held at Áras an Uachtaráin on these two dates. The celebrations were believed to be part of a ‘bridge building’ theme which the President planed to adopt during her term of office.
1999 – Sinn Feín supporters rally in Belfast to urge an end to unionists delaying the establishment of a power-sharing executive.
2001 – Economic disaster is threatened after the first case of foot and mouth disease for 60 years is confirmed in Meigh, South Armagh.
2001 – Dublin Zoo and Fota Island in Cork are closed as a preventive measure designed to protect any animals that may be susceptible to foot and mouth disease.
2002 – A book entitled ‘The Long Road to Peace in Northern Ireland‘ was launched in Belfast. The book is a collection of essays on the state of the peace process and was compiled by Marianne Elliott (Prof.) of the Institute of Irish Studies in Liverpool. The essays were based on lectures delivered at the university between 1996 and 2000.
2003 – Soldiers add razor wire to Shannon Airport’s perimeter fences as the army and gardaí brace for trouble at anti-war protest.
2003 – Bono is made a knight of the French Legion – France’s highest award.
2011 – First steps taken to form coalition government. Negotiators from Fine Gael are sit down with Labour representatives in round one of the complex talks. Both sides accept they are under pressure from Europe to strike a deal by the end of the week.
2012 – Death of Hal Roach. He was a prominent comedian born in Co Waterford. He spent over 60 years in show business, and was featured in the Guinness Book of Records for the longest-running engagement of a comedian at the same venue: 26 years at Jury’s Irish Cabaret, Jury’s Ballsbridge Hotel, Dublin.
2013 – Pope Benedict XVI resigns as the pope of the Catholic Church, becoming the first pope to do so since 1415.
2016 – Death of Frank Kelly, Father Ted’s foul-mouthed priest, aged 77.
Image | Thatched Roof Cottage, Adare, Co Limerick | Pierre Leclerc Photography
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