1649 – Oliver Cromwell sets sail for Ireland and the commencement of one the most vicious military campaigns inflicted on Ireland.
1689 – The Duke of Schomberg lands at Groomsport with his 10,000 strong Williamite army.
1819 – Birth of Sir George Gabriel Stokes, mathematician and physicist, in Skreen, Co Sligo.
1846 – Birth of Otto Jaffe in Hamburg. Otto was the first non-Protestant to hold the office of Lord Mayor of Belfast — he was Jewish.
1857 – Birth of Mary Ellen “Ella” Quinlan – Mother of Eugene O’Neill. Ella married Kilkenny born actor James O’Neill in 1877. Eugene was born one year later. In O’Neill’s semi-autobiographical tome Long Day’s Journey into Night, his mother is represented by a lonely and disillusioned Mrs. Tyrone.
1881 – First issue of United Ireland, Parnellite weekly.
1887 – Special committee appointed to investigate Parnell’s ties to Phoenix Park murders.
1898 – The first issue of Workers’ Republic.
1917 – W.T. Cosgrave was elected as the new MP for Kilkenny City. A member of Sinn Féin, Cosgrave’s victory in the by-election delivered another boost to the party. He received over 66% of the vote, defeating the Irish Parliamentary Party’s John Magennis, former mayor of the city.
1947 – The Health Act extends the powers of county councils and provides maternity care.
1958 – Birth of singer, Feargal Sharkey, in Derry. He first found fame as the lead vocalist of pop punk band The Undertones, famous for the hit single “Teenage Kicks”. Since the end of his recording career he has worked in the business side of music and held several leadership roles in the music industry.
1969 – Serious rioting spreads across Northern Ireland from Derry to other Catholic areas stretching the RUC. The rioting deteriorated into sectarian conflict between Catholics and Protestants and many people, the majority being Catholics, were forced from their homes.
1969 – Taoiseach, Jack Lynch, made a television address in which he announced that ‘field hospitals’ would be set up in border areas. He went on to say that: “the present situation is the inevitable outcome of the policies pursued for decades by successive Stormont governments. It is clear also that the Irish government can no longer stand by and see innocent people injured and perhaps worse.”
1971 – A Catholic man, Hugh Herron, was shot dead by the British Army in Derry.
1971 – Four days after the introduction of internment, Joe Cahill, Commanding Officer of the IRA in Belfast holds an intriguing press conference. http://youtu.be/dK7E56wm56Y
1974 – Death of writer, Kate O’Brien.
1974 – Two British soldiers, Dennis Leach and Michael Southern, were killed by the IRA in a remote controlled bomb attack near Crossmaglen, Co Armagh.
1975 – The IRA carried out a bomb and gun attack on the Bayardo Bar, Shankill Road, Belfast, killing five people and injuring 40 others. One of those killed was a member of the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) the other four were Protestant civilians.
1983 – Two members of the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA) were shot dead by the RUC in Dungannon, Co Tyrone.
1984 – There was a march in west Belfast in honour of Sean Downes killed on 12 August 1984 by a plastic baton round fired by the RUC. The march was followed by serious rioting in the area.
1986 – Gerard O’Reilly, being held awaiting extradition from the Republic of Ireland, was freed from a Dublin court following an error in the extradition warrant.
1993 – The IRA carried out a series of fire-bomb attacks on the pier at Bournemouth, England, and a number of shops.
1995 – President of Sinn Féin, Gerry Adams, addressed a demonstration at Belfast City Hall. During his speech a member of the crowd called out to Adams to, “bring back the IRA”. In an unscripted reply Adams said: “They haven’t gone away, you know”. Although cheered by the crowd Adams was criticised for the remark. Unionists and the British government said that the remark highlighted the need for the decommissioning of IRA weapons. Since it was first uttered, the comment has been referred to repeatedly by critics of SF and the Good Friday Agreement.
1998 – National Chairperson of Sinn Féin, Mitchel McLaughlin, issued a statement urging anyone with information about any of the ‘missing persons’ who disappeared during the course of the conflict to make that information available. This statement was seen by many as having come about because of pressure on SF by relatives of people who had been abducted and never seen again.
1999 – A new set of 30p stamps is issued by An Post to honour the Gaelic Football team of the Millennium. It depicts the members of the An Post-GAA official Gaelic Football Team of the Millennium as chosen by a panel of experts.
1999 – Former MP, Bernadette McAliskey, spoke at a rally held on the lower Ormeau Road in advance of the planned Apprentice Boys of Derry march. She said that: “marching is not a human right – for Orangemen or Republicans”.
1999 – The Progressive Unionist Party (PUP) criticised the decision of Castlereagh Borough Council decision to fly an Orange Order flag outside its civic offices. The PUP said it was “an affront to Roman Catholic and nationalist residents. The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) accused the PUP of hypocrisy because of the PUP’s support of the flying of Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) flags.
2000 – The RUC made safe a pipe-bomb on Drumlee Road in Ballymoney, Co Antrim. The device had been pushed through the letterbox of a Catholic home. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.
2000 – The RUC promises an increased profile at sectarian flashpoints in Belfast after a large-scale attack on Catholic houses further heightens tensions.
2001 – Three Irish men were arrested at Bogotá Airport in Colombia, South America, for travelling on false documents. Colombian authorities reported that two of the men were travelling on false British passports while the third man was using a false Irish passport. There was speculation that the three men were members of the PIRA. It was reported that the men had been in an area of the country that was under the control of left-wing guerrillas. There was further media speculation that the men had been involved in helping to train some of the guerrillas. The men were later identified as Niall Connolly, who had lived in Cuba for a number of years, James Monaghan, formerly a member of the Sinn Féin ardcomhairle, and Martin McCauley, who had been an election worker for Sinn Féin in Armagh.
2001 – Two Catholics, one of them a 14 year-old boy, were injured when Loyalists threw a blast-bomb among a Nationalist crowd in north Belfast. The attack happened during disturbances involving hundreds of Loyalists and Nationalists.
2001 – A hoax nail bomb and fireworks were thrown at two houses in Glengormley, Co Antrim. The British Army were also called to deal with a hoax pipe-bomb in the same area.
2001 – Thomas McCauley, formerly from Belfast, was stabbed to death in Co Waterford. McCauley was given a Republican funeral on Friday 17 August 2001. He was reported as having been a member of the IRA who had broken his links with the movement.
Image | Poisoned Glen, Co Donegal | Fiachra Mangan Photography
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