#OTD in 1581 – The Wexford Martyrs were hanged, drawn and quartered.

The Wexford Martyrs were Patrick Cavanagh, Matthew Lambert, Edward Cheevers, Robert Tyler and two others whose names are not known. They were found guilty of treason for aiding in the escape of James Eustace, Viscount Baltinglass. James Eustace, whose family had links with Clongowes Wood Castle, now a Jesuit boarding school near Dublin, joined the […]

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#OTD in 1970 – Falls Road Curfew | Beginning in the afternoon, the British Army carried out extensive house searches in the Falls Road area of Belfast for members of the IRA and IRA arms.

At approximately 4.30pm a mixed patrol of British Army soldiers and RUC pulled up to no.24 Balkan Street, in the Lower Falls in west Belfast. They were acting on a tip-off from a ‘concerned resident’ about a stash of weapons hidden in the property. What happened next is widely seen as having changed the course […]

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#OTD in 1923 – Noel Lemass, Anti-Treaty IRA officer in Dublin, brother of Seán Lemass is abducted by Free State plainclothesmen and killed.

‘The Winter Sleep of Captain Lemass’ by Harry Clifton The life of the country Hardened against you Like frost, and a new front Opened—brother against brother, Choice against choice, Disputing the high ground. Your eyes, Blindfolded, beheld the ideal State As the real one steadied itself To annihilate you. How to survive it, the force […]

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#OTD in 1922 – Anti-Treaty forces abandon The Four Courts in Dublin which was bombarded for two days under the orders of Michael Collins.

Anti-Treaty commander in the Four Courts, Paddy O’Brien is wounded by shrapnel. Ernie O’Malley assumes command. In the morning there is a truce to remove the wounded. Shortly afterward, a massive explosion destroys the western wing of the Four Courts and the Irish Public Records Office along with it. Forty advancing Free State troops were […]

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#OTD in 1916 – Sir Roger Casement, Irish Nationalist and British diplomat is sentenced to death for his part in the Easter Rising.

“If today when all Europe is dying for national ends, whole people marching down with songs of joy to the valley of eternal night, we alone stand by idle and moved only to words, then we are in truth the most contemptible of all the people in Europe.” –Sir Roger Casement Sir Roger Casement was […]

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#OTD in 1915 – Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa, Fenian leader, dies in the United States.

“This rooting out of the Irish people; this transplanting of them from their native home into a foreign land, may be all very well, so far as the young people are concerned; but for the fathers and mothers who have reared families in Ireland, it is immediate decay and death.” ―Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa Death of […]

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#OTD in 1880 – Ned Kelly the Australian bushranger captured at Glenrowan.

Edward “Ned” Kelly was an Australian bushranger of Irish descent. His legacy is controversial; some consider him to be a murderous villain, while others view him as a folk hero and Australia’s equivalent of Robin Hood. Kelly was born in Victoria to an Irish convict father. The Australian Dictionary of Biography states Kelly was “the […]

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#OTD in 1920 – On hearing of British atrocities in Ireland, soldiers of the Connaught Rangers mutiny in protest; three are shot dead; a fourth, Private James Daly, is court-martialled and executed by firing squad.

The Connaught Rangers (The Devil’s Own) was an Irish line infantry regiment of the British Army originally raised in 1793 as the 88th Regiment of Foot (Connaught Rangers), which gained a reputation both for indiscipline and for its prowess as shock troops and streetfighters with the bayonet while serving under the Duke of Wellington during […]

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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 1916 – Roger Casement goes on trial at the Royal Courts of Justice on a charge of treason.

In the early hours of 21 April 1916, three days before the rising began, Roger Casement was taken by a German submarine and was put ashore at Banna Strand in Tralee Bay, Co Kerry. Suffering from a recurrence of the malaria that had plagued him since his days in the Congo, and too weak to […]

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