#OTD in 1971 – The GAA lifted its ban on members playing or attending ‘foreign’ sports such as soccer or rugby.

The GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association) finally revokes its infamous Rule 27, commonly known as “The Ban.” The rule banned all GAA members from playing or watching in non-Gaelic games. Non-Gaelic included rugby, soccer, hockey and cricket. GAA members who broke Rule 27 were expelled from the GAA. This famously included Irish President and GAA-Patron Dr. […]

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#OTD in 1856 – Birth of athlete, Patrick Nally, in Balla, Co Mayo.

The stadium stands at Croke Park commemorated a proud and famous trio of Irishmen, Michael Cusack of Co Clare, Michael Hogan of Co Tipperary and Pat Nally of Co Mayo. Patrick (Pat) William Nally was a member of the Supreme Council of the Irish Republican Brotherhood and well-known Connacht athlete from Balla, Co Mayo. It […]

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#OTD in 1979 – Death of hurler Christy Ring, one of the greatest hurlers of all time.

Cork hurling great and one of the greatest hurlers of all time, Christy Ring went to the great hurling stadium in the sky. Born in Cloyne, Co Cork, the hurling legend won eight All-Ireland hurling championships in a twenty-five year career with the rebel county. His first All-Ireland success was in 1941, the first of […]

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#OTD in 1860 – Birth of playwright, folklorist, founder of The Gaelic League and the first president of Éire, Douglas Hyde, in Castlerea, Co Roscommon.

“As our language wanes and dies, the golden legends of the far-off centuries fade and pass away. No one sees their influence upon culture; no one sees their educational power.” –Douglas Hyde Douglas Hyde is born at Longford House in Castlerea, Co Roscommon. He was an ardent supporter of the Irish language and was one […]

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#OTD in 1879 – Birth of Anti-Treaty Nationalist and Politician, Austin Stack, in Tralee, Co Kerry.

Under the influence of his father, Austin Stack joined the local Young Ireland Society and the local branch of the Irish National Foresters, and was a keen student of Irish history. Appalled at the Cinderella status of Gaelic football and hurling, he co-founded the John Mitchel club in Tralee and became its secretary. The remarkable […]

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#OTD in 1906 – Death of Michael Cusack, Founder of the GAA.

Cusack was an Irish teacher and founder of the Gaelic Athletic Association. A romantic nationalist, who was associated with the Fenian movement. He was active in the Gaelic revival: a member of the Society for the Preservation of the Irish Language which was founded in 1876, and later the Gaelic League who in 1879 broke […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 27 November:

784 – Fergal, the Geometer, Irish educator, dies. He originated from a noble family of Ireland, where his name was Feirgil, and was educated in the Iona monastery. It is controversial whether he is identical to Abbot Feirgil of Aghaboe Abbey in Co Laois. He is said to have been a descendant of Niall of […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 15 November:

1777 – The Articles of Confederation, the first written constitution of the United States was adopted by the Continental Congress. A number of the Congress hailed from Ireland including Secretary of the Congress Charles Thomson who was born in Maghera, Co Derry in 1729. Thomson was the permanent Secretary of the Continental Congress for more […]

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#OTD in 1884 – Founding of the Gaelic Athletic Association in the Hayes’s Hotel in Thurles, Co Tipperary.

Michael Cusack convenes the first meeting of the ‘Gaelic Athletic Association for the Preservation and Cultivation of national Pastimes’ in Hayes’ Hotel, Thurles, Co Tipperary. Cusack could never have envisioned that the GAA would develop into the largest amateur sports organisation in the world. His legacy can be viewed every September when more than 80,000 […]

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#OTD in 1997 – All-Ireland champions Kerry play Cavan at Downing Stadium, Randall’s Island, NY in a 50th anniversary celebration of the only time the All-Ireland took place abroad.

The 1947 All-Ireland Football Final between Kerry and Cavan was played at the Polo Grounds in New York. The 50th anniversary of the game was marked when the same two teams played their National League fixture at Downing’s Stadium in New York. A crowd of 8,000 turned out for a unique Irish sporting occasion. Downing […]

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