#OTD in Irish History – 19 November:

1773 – Death of James FitzGerald, 1st Duke of Leinster, etc. PC (Ire), styled Lord Offaly until 1744 and known as The Earl of Kildare between 1744 and 1761 and as The Marquess of Kildare between 1761 and 1766, was an Irish nobleman, soldier and politician. He was the 20th Earl of Kildare and Baron of Offaly and was created 1st Viscount Leinster of Taplow in 1747 and 1st Duke of Leinster, 1st Marquess of Kildare and 1st Earl of Offaly in 1766.

1783 – The Volunteers’ parliamentary reform bill is rejected by the Irish House of Commons, 157 to 77.

1798 – Theobald Wolfe Tone dies from a stab wound to his neck which he inflicted upon himself on 12 November; his attempted suicide is the result of being refused a soldier’s execution by firing squad and being sentenced to death by hanging.

1821 – Seventeen people are burned to death in a house in Tubber, Co Tipperary, probably by ‘Rockite’ agitators.

1863 – U.S. President Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address dedicating a national cemetery at the site of the battlefield in Pennsylvania where numerous Irish fought and died during the fearsome battle of the previous July.

1871 – Margaret Emmeline Conway Dobbs, Irish historian, language activist and defender of Roger Casement, is born in Dublin.

1900 – Birth of Anglo-Irish writer, Pamela Hinkson, daughter of Katharine Tynan. Best known for her novel “The Ladies Road” which sold over 100,000 copies in the Penguin edition.

1900 – Birth of Bunny Ahearne, in Wexford. He was instrumental in bringing the sport of ice hockey to Great Britain. He became the Manager of the Great Britain national ice hockey team in 1934 and helped manage the British to a gold medal at the 1936 Winter Olympics, then the European Ice Hockey Championship in 1937 and 1938.

1918 – Birth of Brendan Corish in Wexford town, Co Wexford. He was an Irish Labour Party politician, and leader of his party from 1960 to 1977. He also served in a number of cabinet positions, most notably as Tánaiste, Minister for Health and Minister for Social Welfare.

1920 – Four IRA officers were captured by the Auxiliaries in Durris, Co Cork. Only the intervention of a colonel of the King’s Liverpool Regiment prevented the men from being summarily executed.

1920 – Joseph Devlin, MP for West Belfast/Belfast Falls, accused the security forces of kidnapping Fr. Michael Griffin of Galway. Chief Secretary Hamar Greenwood denied this accusation.

1922 – Three more Republican prisoners are executed in Dublin by the Free State.

1922 – Free State troops fire on a republican rally on O’Connell Street, Dublin that was protesting against the mistreatment of prisoners. One civilian is killed and seven wounded.

1924 – Death in Ara Coeli, Armagh, of Cardinal Michael Logue, Primate of All Ireland.

1944 – Denis Brosnan, the founder of Kerry Group, is born in Tralee.

1954 – First performance of Brendan Behan’s The Quare Fellow at the Pike Theatre in Dublin.

1957 – Affectionately known as “Jacko”, Jack O’Shea, a former Irish sportsperson, was born in Cahirciveen, Co Kerry. He played Gaelic football at various times with his local clubs St. Mary’s in Kerry and Leixlip in Kildare. He was a member of the Kerry senior inter-county team from 1976 until 1992. O’Shea is regarded as one of the greatest players of all-time.

1970 – Figures were released by the Commissioner for Complaints in Northern Ireland showing that there had been 970 complaints in the first ten months of his office, with 74 of them alleging discrimination.

1972 – Seán MacStiofáin, leader of the IRA, was arrested in Dublin. He was subsequently sentenced to six months imprisonment.

1984 – British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, held an Anglo-Irish summit meeting with Taoiseach, Garret FitzGerald, together with British and Irish ministers and officials, at Chequers in England. A joint communiqué was issued following the summit meeting. At 5.00pm Thatcher gave a press conference at 10 Downing Street, London. Responding to a question from a member of the press Thatcher ruled out the three options proposed in the Report of the New Ireland Forum: “A united Ireland was one solution. That is out. A second solution was confederation of the two states. That is out. A third solution was joint authority. That is out.” Thatcher’s ‘Out, Out, Out’ comments were considered by many Nationalists as being perfunctorily dismissive.

1994 – Bertie Ahern, was elected as the new leader of Fianna Fáil.

1998 – UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Dr Mary Robinson, is elected as chancellor of Trinity College, Dublin. Dr Robinson is the first woman in the college’s history to be appointed to the position, making her the head of the University of Dublin of which Trinity College is the sole constituent.

1998 – The Northern Ireland Act, which provides for the implementation of the Good Friday Agreement, became law.

1998 – The United Nations Committee Against Torture published a report calling for a ban on plastic bullets, the closure of Castlereagh and other RUC detention centres and the “reconstruction” of the RUC. The report was criticised by Unionists.

1999 – The life of eighty-five year old Eamon Kelly is celebrated at a banquet in his honour held at the Listowel Arms Hotel in Co Kerry. Among the 250 guests are John B. Keane, Barry McGovern, Niall Toibin and Frances Black.

1999 – An application to the High Court in Belfast for a judicial review of the decision of Secretary of State of Northern Ireland, Marjorie (Mo) Mowlam, to accept as intact the ceasefire of the IRA. The application was dismissed by the court. Two men lost their appeal against their life sentences. The two men had been convicted of the murder of Greg Taylor, an RUC officer, on 1 June 1997. Taylor had been off-duty and was beaten to death by a Loyalist mob as he left a public house in Ballymoney. The two men were later released under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement.

2001 – Taoiseach Bertie Ahern announces that low-cost airlines will have a dedicated wing at Dublin Airport in 18 months; Aer Rianta is told to drop airport charges to attract tourists into the country.

2014 – Death of Jeremiah Joseph Coffey. Born in Co Cork, he was the seventh Roman Catholic Bishop of the Diocese of Sale, Australia, appointed by Pope John Paul II, serving from 1989 until his retirement in 2008. On retirement, he was styled Bishop Emeritus of Sale.

Image | Maghera Strand, Maghera, Ardara, Co Donegal | Gareth Wray Photography

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