#OTD in Irish History – 28 September:

1678 – ‘Popish plot’ is alleged in England. The Popish Plot was a fictitious conspiracy concocted by Titus Oates that gripped England in anti-Catholic hysteria between 1678 and 1681. Oates alleged that there existed an extensive Catholic conspiracy to assassinate Charles II, accusations that led to the execution of at least 15 men and precipitated the Exclusion Bill Crisis. Eventually Oates’ intricate web of accusations fell apart, leading to his arrest and conviction for perjury.

1690 – Marlborough takes Cork for the Williamites.

1703 – Francis Annesley is expelled from the Irish Commons for his part in The Report of the Commissioners appointed by Parliament into the Irish Forfeitures, printed in London, containing the paragraph: ‘And indeed it does appear to us, that the Freeholders of this Kingdom, through length of time and by contracting new friendship with the Irish, or by inter-purchasing with one another, but chiefly through a general dislike of the disposition of the forfeitures, are scarce willing to find any person guilty of the late rebellion, even upon full evidence.’ The House has found that Annesley ‘scandalously and maliciously misrepresented and traduced the Protestant Freeholders of this Kingdom and thereby endeavoured to create a misunderstanding and jealousy between the people of England and the Protestants of this Kingdom’.

1725 – Sir Arthur Guinness is born in Celbridge, Co. Kildare. There is much debate as to Sir Arthur’s birthdate. Many sources say September 24, although there is no evidence to support that claim. Charles Mosely ‘Burke’s Peerage and Barontage says that March 2nd was the date Arthur made his debut. To end all the speculation, in 1991 the Guinness Company chose September 28th. To confuse matters further, in 2009, Guinness celebrated its 250th birthday; but it would appear that many people are interchanging the birth of the stout with the founder of the company who makes it. No matter. Whatever the date, Arthur’s Day is cause for a celebration with substance.

1899 – Maurice James Dease the first soldier to win a Victoria Cross medal in WWI is born in Coole, Co. Westmeath. Dease won the medal for his bravery during the Battle of Mons Belgium, just nineteen days after World War I breaks out.

1889 – Birth of painter, Seán Keating (born John Keating), in Limerick. He was an Irish romantic-realist painter who painted some iconic images of the Irish War of Independence (such as ‘Men of The South’) and of the early industrialisation of Ireland.

1912 – Ulster Covenant: Edward Carson, leader of Ulster Unionists, stages signing by 500,000 Ulster Protestant Unionists of “Southern League and Covenant” against Irish Home Rule.

1918 – The Irish Labour Party followed Sinn Féin’s example in contesting the next general election on an abstentionist platform.

1918 – Cumman na mBan called for Irish republican prisoners in English jails to be released immediately.

1920 – Cork IRA volunteers raided the military barracks at Mallow, Co Cork to obtain arms. Thirty seven rifles were taken. British troops burned several businesses and homes in the town in reprisal.

1920 – A law clerk named John Lynch was murdered in his hotel bed. It was a mystery to most people why he was killed, but the IRA Propaganda Department successfully deflected journalists’ attention from reporting his work on the cases of IRA volunteers charged with killing policemen.

1922 – John Galvin, a republican captured in the Killorglin raid is shot by Free State troops in Tralee and his body dumped in nearby Ballyseedy wood. Galvin had admitted under interrogation to the killing of a National Army officer at Castlemaine. A Free State soldier is also shot dead while on sentry duty at Rathmore courthouse, Kerry.

1922 – Anti-Treaty forces mount an ambush at Kilfenora, Co Clare. One Free State captain, Consadine is killed.

1922 – Republican leader Tom Barry, who was captured in the Dublin fighting, escapes from an internment camp in Gormanston.

1922 – A National Army medical orderly named Lydon is shot dead by a republican sniper as he cycles out of Tralee, Co Kerry, despite the fact that he is unarmed and wearing a Red Cross armband.

1922 – A Free State garrison at Oldcastle, Co Meath is attacked and forced to surrender its weapons. A mine is detonated against their barracks and fire is opened with machine guns. A civilian is killed in the crossfire.

1946 – Birth of folk musician, Finbar Furey, in Ballyfermot, Dublin. Best known for his band of brothers The Fureys. The Furey family were travelling people who settled in Claddagh Road, Ballyfermot, Dublin.

1960 – RTÉ broadcasts a report on the re-opening of Bunratty Castle to the public after extensive refurbishing.

1964 – Divis Street riots follow Ian Paisley’s insistence that the RUC remove the Tricolour from a window at Sinn Féin’s Belfast headquarters.

1971 – Tripartite talks continued at Chequers, England.

1975 – The IRA exploded a bomb in Caterham, Surrey, England.

1977 – British Prime Minister, James Callaghan, and Taoiseach Jack Lynch, held a meeting in Downing Street, London. One of the main issues discussed was economic cross-border co-operation.

1978 – Democrat Congressman, Joshua Eilberg, and Republican Congressman, Hamilton Fish, paid a five-day visit to Northern Ireland. The two men later argued that the United States should play a part in finding a political settlement in the region.

1978 – Pope John Paul I dies after just 33 days in office aged 65 – the shortest reign in the entire history of the Papacy.

1984 – Security forces in Ireland intercepted a trawler, the Marita Ann, off the coast of Co Kerry and uncovered seven tons of arms and explosives believed to be en route to the IRA. Five men were arrested during the operation. The haul represented the largest find in Ireland since 1973. In June 1987 four American men were sentenced by an American court for their part in the incident. In August 1987 two American men and two Irish men were also sentenced by a French court.

1987 – Birth of Gary Deegan in Dublin. He is an Irish association footballer, who plays as a midfielder for Shrewsbury Town. Deegan has previously played for Shelbourne, Kilkenny City, Longford Town, Galway United, Bohemians, Coventry City and Southend United.

1987 – U2 is joined by the New Voices of Freedom choir onstage at Madison Square Garden in New York for a performance of “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”.

1993 – Unionist politicians rejected a suggestion by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) for a boycott of government.

1995 – Vice-President of Sinn Féin, Martin McGuinness, held a meeting with Michael Ancram, Political Development Minister at the Northern Ireland Office (NIO). The meeting was held at the request of Sinn Féin to discuss the political situation; there was agreement to meet again.

1995 – A member of Red Hand Commando (RHC), William Elliott (31), was shot dead by members of his own Loyalist paramilitary group, while leaving a friends’ house, Primacy Park, Bangor, Co Down. The killing was the result of an internal RHC dispute. It was alleged that he had been killed because of his part in the killing of Margaret Wright (31) on 7 April 1994.

1997 – Loyalists who were taking part in the weekly picket of the Catholic church at Harryville, Ballymena, said that they would extend the protest to include Catholic chapels at Ballycastle, Dervcock, and Lisburn. They said that they would continue their protest until the Orange Order was allowed to parade in the Catholic village of Dunloy, Co Antrim.

1998 – Taoiseach Bertie Ahern vows to hand over all necessary papers to the Flood Tribunal investigation into alleged planning irregularities.

1998 – The final strains of the Last Post symbolically close a 200-year-old military history in Fermoy and Ballincollig as the Tricolour is lowered and the troops leave the barracks. Both camps are closing and the soldiers are being transferred to Cork.

1999 – Leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), David Trimble, criticised loyalist paramilitaries for attacks on Catholics. He also called on people to repudiate “mafia loyalism” in Protestant areas. Trimble quoted figures indicating that Loyalist paramilitaries were responsible for 9 murders, 76 shootings, 178 ‘punishment’ beatings, and over 400 incidents of forced exclusions. The Progressive Unionist Party (PUP) and the Ulster Democratic Party (UDP) criticised Trimble for his remarks.

1999 – The home of dual Olympian and arguably Ireland’s greatest ever athlete, the late Dr Pat O’Callaghan, is demolished in his adopted Clonmel to make way for a Rehab training facility.

1999 – Larchill Arcadian Gardens in Co Kildare win’s the top prize in the ESB Community Environment Awards.

2000 – The Ulster Unionist Party warns that it may withdraw from all North South bodies established under the Good Friday Agreement unless guarantees are forthcoming on IRA decommissioning, and policing.

2000 – According to official figures, the number of mobile telephone connections in Ireland exceeds the fixed line total for the first time.

2000 – A call for the IRA to be disbanded is made by Taoiseach Bertie Ahern when he reiterates the view that Fianna Fáil cannot go into government with Sinn Féin while that party remains linked to an armed force.

2001 – A Catholic civilian, Martin O’Hagan (51), who worked as a journalist for the Sunday World was shot dead by Loyalist paramilitaries as he walked towards his home with his wife in Lurgan, Co Armagh. The Red Hand Defenders (RHD), a cover name previously used by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) and the Loyalist Volunteer Force (LVF), claimed responsibility for the killing. O’Hagan was the first journalist to be killed during the course of ‘the Troubles’. The RUC believed that the LVF was responsible for the killing. O’Hagan had written a number of stories about the activities of the LVF and had been threatened on a number of occasions.

2001 – Chief Constable of the RUC, Ronnie Flanagan, made a further appeal to political and community leaders to do all they can to try to bring an end to the ongoing violence in north Belfast. He again stated his belief that Loyalist paramilitaries, in particular the Ulster Defence Association (UDA), were involved in the shooting and rioting.

2012 – Country singer Larry Cunningham dies at the age of 74.

2015 – Death of Samuel Alexander “Sandy” Faris. Born in Caledon, Co Tyrone, he was a composer, conductor and writer, known for his television theme tunes, including the theme music for the 1970s TV series Upstairs, Downstairs. He composed and recorded many operas and musicals, and also composed film scores (including for Georgy Girl) and orchestral works. As a conductor, he was especially known for his revivals of Jacques Offenbach and Gilbert and Sullivan operettas.

2015 – Death of Make-up artist Cathriona White. The Hollywood make-up artist from Cappawhite, Co Tipperary. She had been the on/off girlfriend of actor Jim Carrey since 2012.

2015 – Death of composer, conductor and writer, Alexander “Sandy” Faris. Born in Caledon, Co Tyrone,  known for his television theme tunes, including the theme music for the 1970s TV series Upstairs, Downstairs. He composed and recorded many operas and musicals, and also composed film scores (including for Georgy Girl) and orchestral works. As a conductor, he was especially known for his revivals of Jacques Offenbach and Gilbert and Sullivan operettas.

Image | Doolough, Co Mayo | Hibernia Landscapes by Stephen Wallace

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