#OTD in Irish History – 30 December:

1691 – Robert Boyle, pioneer chemist and physicist dies.

1820 – Birth of author, Mary Anne Sadlier. Born Mary Anne Madden in Cootehill, Co Cavan, Sadlier published roughly sixty novels and numerous stories. She wrote for Irish immigrants in both the United States and Canada, encouraging them to attend mass and retain the Catholic faith. In so doing, Sadlier also addressed the related themes of anti-Catholicism, the Great Hunger, emigration, and domestic work. Her writings are often found under the name Mrs. J. Sadlier.

1830 – William Lewery Blackley, cleric and social reformer, is born in Dundalk, Co Louth.

1839 – Birth of poet and playwright, John Todhunter, in Dublin. He wrote seven volumes of poetry, and several plays.

1841 – Birth of newspaper owner, editor and scholar, Francis Brinkley, in Co Meath. He resided in Japan for over 40 years, where he was the author of numerous books on Japanese culture, art and architecture, and an English-Japanese Dictionary. He was also known as Frank Brinkley or as Captain Francis Brinkley, and was the great-uncle of Cyril Connolly.

1870 – Philanthropist and founder and director of homes for poor children, Thomas Barnardo, founded a boys’ orphanage at Stepney Causeway, in London, training boys in carpentry, metal work and shoemaking. These skills enabled the boys to secure apprenticeships and work.

1920 – Martial law was extended to Counties Clare, Kilkenny, Waterford and Wexford.

1970 – The financial cost of the disturbances and riots during 1969 and 1970 were estimated to be £5.5 million.

1970 – A member of the IRA was killed in a premature bomb explosion in Santry, Co Dublin.

1972 – Birth of Paul Keegan in Dublin. Keegan was the first Irishman to play in Major League Soccer in the United States.

1975 – Public Records Released, 1 January 2006: Note of a meeting between the Permanent Under-Secretary (PUS), on behalf of the British government, and Mr Stanley Worrall and Dr Jack Weir. The meeting took place at a house known as Laneside, in Hollywood, Co Down. Worral and Weir had been part of a group of Protestant clergymen who had met with senior members of the IRA at Feakle, Co Clare, on 10 December 1974.

1975 – Mark Clinton, the Minister for Agriculture, notifies Trinity College that all future state funds for veterinary medicine would be allocated to University College.

1980 – A Loyalist paramilitary group called the Loyalist Prisoners Action Force (LPAF) shot dead William Burns (45) a prisoner officer in Belfast. It is believed that the LPAF was a cover name used by the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF).

1990 – Fergal Caraher, a member of Sinn Féin, was shot and killed and his brother wounded when British Army troops opened fire on their car at a check point at Cullyhanna, Co Armagh.

1993 – A British Army soldier on patrol in Crossmaglen, Co Armagh, was shot dead by an IRA sniper. The IRA released a ‘new year’ message.

1993 – The Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) said that it did not feel threatened by the Downing Street Declaration and would not support another “publicity stunt” by Ian Paisley, leader of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

1997 – Key files from the Department of Defence, the Department of Justice and the Office of the Attorney General relating to the Arms Crisis of 1970 are discovered to be missing from the State archives.

1997 – Thousands of loyalists pack the streets of Portadown for the funeral of LVF commander Billy Wright.

2002 – To mark the 400th anniversary of the exodus of the O’Sullivan Beare clan from West Cork to Leitrim, a group of 40 people begins walking the entire 260-mile route which will take them through 11 counties and about two weeks to complete.

2006 – Saddam Hussein is executed. The commander of the US forces responsible for the capture of Hussein is Army Col. James Hickey whose parents hail from Co Sligo.

2007 – Death of Frank Winder. He was a professor of biochemistry, a naturalist, and one of Ireland’s leading rock climbers in the 1950s and 1960s.

Image | Glenoe, Co Antrim

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