#OTD in 1867 – The Escape that Sparked the Manchester Martyrs: Thomas Kelly and Timothy Deasy are rescued in a Fenian attack on a police van in Manchester during which a police sergeant is shot dead.

The Manchester Martyrs – William Philip Allen, Michael Larkin, and Michael O’Brien – were members of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, an organisation dedicated to ending British rule in Ireland. They were executed for the murder of a police officer in Manchester, England, in 1867, during an incident that became known as the Manchester Outrages. The […]

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#OTD in 1979 – A Provisional Irish Republican Army bomb kills British retired admiral Lord Mountbatten and three others while they are boating on holiday off the coast in Co Sligo.

An IRA bomb kills the Queen’s cousin Lord Louis Mountbatten in Co Sligo. Mountbatten regularly holidayed in the West of Ireland. The bomb exploded on his boat some minutes after he and family friends had departed the little port of Mullaghmore. Mountbatten’s grandson Nicholas, 14, and fifteen year old local, Paul Maxwell, 15, employed as […]

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#OTD in 1991 – The convictions of the group of people known as the ‘Maguire Seven’ were quashed by the Court of Appeal in London.

The Court of Appeal overturns the sentences on the Maguire Seven. In 2005, Prime Minister Tony Blair apologised unreservedly for what happened. “I am very sorry that they were subject to such an ordeal and such an injustice. “They deserve to be completely and publicly exonerated.” Forced (beaten) confessions, contaminated forensic kits, a rush to […]

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#OTD in 1850 – Horatio Kitchener, 1st Earl Kitchener of Khartoum; soldier and statesman, is born in Ballylongford, Co Kerry.

Kitchener was the son of Lt. Col. Henry Horatio Kitchener who settled in Ballylongford, Co Kerry under a scheme to encourage the purchase of land after the recent Great Hunger. His father was an unpopular tenant-evicting landlord. The young Kitchener was commissioned into the Royal Engineers on 4 January 1871. Kitchener saw active service in […]

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#OTD in 1815 – Battle of Waterloo, when British forces, under the command of the Duke of Wellington, a Dubliner, defeat Napoleon’s forces.

The Iron Duke wasn’t the only Irish presence on the day — Napoleon’s horse Marengo was reared in Co Wexford, and the Duke of Wellington’s mount was from Co Cork. Arthur Wellesley was born in what is now Dublin’s Merrion Hotel and spent much of his childhood in Ireland, not that he was proud of it. […]

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#OTD in 1949 – The Republic of Ireland withdraws from the British Commonwealth. The British Parliament recognises the declaration but asserts sovereignty over the six northern counties.

The withdrawal of the twenty-six counties from the British Commonwealth is recognised officially by Britain, thereby, becoming the independent Republic of Ireland. The Ireland Act 1949 passed by the House of Commons recognised the withdrawal. Éamon de Valera had introduced his Constitution (Bunreacht na hÉireann) in 1937, the Irish Free State, or Éire as it […]

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#OTD in 1916 – The merchant ship SS Libau left the German port of Lübeck disguised as the Norwegian ship of similar appearance, the SS Aud, for Ireland that were to be collected by Roger Casement with arms for the Irish Republican Brotherhood.

Masquerading as the SS Aud, an existing Norwegian vessel of similar appearance, the Libau set sail from the Baltic port of Lübeck on 9 April 1916, under the Command of Karl Spindler, bound for the south-west coast of Ireland. Under Spindler was a crew of 22 men, all of whom were volunteers. The Libau/Aud, laden […]

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#OTD in 1886 – Home Rule Bill introduced in English Parliament by William Gladstone.

The Acts of Union 1800, united the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland (previously in personal union) to create the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. At various intervals during this time, attempts were made to destabilise Anglo-Irish relations. Rebellions were launched in 1803, 1848, 1867, and 1916 to try to […]

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#OTD in 1895 – Oscar Wilde was arrested, in the Cadogan Hotel, London, after losing a libel case against John Sholto Douglas (9th Marquess of Queensberry), who had called Wilde a homosexual.

Oscar Wilde was an Irish playwright, novelist, essayist, and poet born in Dublin. At the height of his fame and success, while his masterpiece, The Importance of Being Earnest, was still on stage in London, Wilde had the Marquess of Queensberry prosecuted for libel. Married to Constance Lloyd and father of two children Cyril and […]

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#OTD in 1807 – Birth of Sir Charles Edward Trevelyan, 1st Baronet, KCB, a British civil servant and Governor of Madras.

Trevelyan is referred to in the modern Irish folk song The Fields of Athenry about ‘An Gorta Mór’. For his actions, he is commonly considered one of the most detested figures in Irish history, along with the likes of Cromwell. Image | Charles Trevelyan accompanied by a poem written by Joe Canning SaveSave SaveSave

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