#OTD in 1915 – The Lusitania is sunk by a German U-boat off the Old Head of Kinsale, Co Cork with the loss of more than 1,100 lives.

The passenger liner Lusitania is torpedoed and sunk ten miles off the Old Head of Kinsale, Co Cork by German U-boat U-20 under the command of Captain Walter Schweiger, resulting in the death of 1,198 of the ship’s passengers and crew. Only 761 people survived what was perceived by Britain as a flagrant breach of […]

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#OTD in 1916 – Easter Rising Dublin – Day 4.

It is the fourth day of the Easter Rising and the remaining rebels are under constant attack. The GPO and Four Courts are being blitzed with machine gun and rifle fire, and large parts of Sackville Street (O’Connell Street) are up in flames. As British authorities come to terms with the situation in Dublin, fierce street […]

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#OTD in 1915 – Joseph Mary Plunkett travelled to Germany to join Roger Casement and assist him in his efforts to raise an Irish Brigade and garner German support for the planned 1916 Rising.

Once in Germany, Plunkett met with Casement, a former member of the British Foreign Office, who had travelled from America, funded by Clan na Gael under the leadership of John Devoy. Arriving in Berlin on 31 October 1914, Casement’s mission to Germany had three basic aims: 1. To secure German help for Ireland; 2. To […]

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#OTD in 1941 – 15/16: In the Belfast Blitz, two-hundred bombers of the German Luftwaffe attacked Belfast, killing one thousand people.

Belfast was poorly prepared for the blitz compared with cities in Britain, few children had been evacuated, air raid shelters were sparse and defensive arrangements weak. Yet the Harland and Wolff ship building yards and Northern Ireland’s strategic role in the battle of the Atlantic made it a likely target. When German bombers struck on […]

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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 1941 – A Luftwaffe bomb kills 13 people in Belfast.

The British government appeals to Éamon de Valera for help and he authorises fire brigades from Dublin, Dundalk, Drogheda and Dún Laoghaire to give assistance. On the evening of 7 April 1941, Fifteen German bombers believed to have been from the Kampfgruppe 26 path finder’s left their airfield in Northern Holland near the town of […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 7 April:

AD 30 – A favourite exhibit in Dublin’s National Museum is the 12th Century Cross of Cong. The True Cross that was brought to Ireland and displayed in different places around the country. The cross is so-called because it was kept in the Augustinian Friary at Cong, Co Mayo, for centuries. It was made to enshrine […]

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Sir Roger Casement – The Man Hanged as a Traitor Who Took on the Devil

Roger Casement (1864-1916) was an Irish nationalist and British consular official, whose attempt to secure aid from Germany in the struggle for Irish independence led to his execution by the British for the crime of high treason. Born on 1 September, 1864, in Kingstown, to a Protestant father and Catholic mother, Roger David Casement was […]

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#OTD in 1918 – John Devoy claims Roger Casement to blame for the 1916 Easter Rising’s failure.

New York-based John Devoy, editor of the recently suppressed Gaelic American has claimed credit for being the key individual behind the ‘German Sinn Féiner’ efforts to launch a revolt in Ireland in 1916. The claim comes in a letter, a copy of which was published last month in the USA.   The letter, discovered on the […]

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