Roger Casement | A Man of Mystery

In the week after Roger Casement’s execution, on 3 August 1916, newsreel footage of the nationalist leader was shown in cinemas across America. At a conservative estimate, some 15 million US citizens saw the moving pictures. A century on, this fragment of film provides a fascinating insight. Casement is glimpsed at his desk writing: The […]

Read More

#OTD in 1823 – Birth of Irish nationalist and American politician, Thomas Francis Meagher, in Waterford.

‘I am here to regret nothing I have already done, to retract nothing I have already said. The history of Ireland explains this crime, and justifies it.’ –Thomas Francis Meager Born the son of Waterford’s mayor, one of the few wealthy Catholic businessmen in town in 1823; Meagher benefited from a quality education (partly in […]

Read More

#OTD in 1863 – Large numbers of Irish immigrants are involved in Draft Riots in New York City.

On the morning of 13th July 1863, thousands of mostly Irish-immigrant workers in Manhattan erupted in what’s still the deadliest rioting in American history. Mobs rampaged through most of the week in a fury of savage murder, arson and looting. They hung African-American men from lampposts and dragged their mutilated bodies through the streets. They […]

Read More

#OTD in Irish History | 4 July:

1653 – Ireland and Scotland are represented by six and five members respectively in the ‘Barebones’ parliament. It was an assembly entirely nominated by Oliver Cromwell and the Army’s Council of Officers. It acquired its name from the nominee for the City of London, Praise-God Barebone. 1690 – James II flees to France for assistance […]

Read More

#OTD in 1863 – The Irish Brigade at Gettysburg – Pickett’s Charge, Day 3 | Pickett’s Charge had begun and the 69th Pennsylvania would suffer dreadful losses.

On 3 July 1863, as the Confederates of George Pickett’s Division closed on the stone wall near the top of Cemetery Ridge at Gettysburg, they saw a green flag rising up from behind it surrounded by 200 men in blue springing to their feet to open fire on the charging Confederates.  The green battle flag […]

Read More

#OTD in 1863 – More than six hundred men of the Irish Brigade fight at Gettysburg, losing one-third of their number in The Wheatfield.

The Irish Brigade suffered severe losses during the Civil War, initially starting with over 2,500 volunteers. The Brigade distinguished itself in numerous conflicts including Chancellorsville, Fair Oaks and Fredericksburg. “After a long and fatiguing march, we arrived on the evening of the 1st instant within about 3 miles of Gettysburg,” wrote Major Sergeant Clair Mulholland […]

Read More

#OTD in Irish History | 2 July:

1790 – In an election for Speaker of the Irish parliament, John Foster defeats William Brabazon Ponsonby by 145 votes to 105. 1798 – United Irishmen Rebellion: Rebels defeat small force of Yeomanry at Ballraheen Hill; they move to camp at Croghan. 1798 – United Irishmen Rebellion: Execution of Father John Murphy. 1800 – The […]

Read More

#OTD in 1867 – Thomas Francis Meagher, born in Co Waterford, (“Meagher of the Sword”), Young Irelander leader, Irish nationalist and American politician, drowns.

“I now bid farewell to the country of my birth – of my passions – of my death; a country whose misfortunes have invoked my sympathies – whose factions I sought to quell – whose intelligence I prompted to a lofty aim – whose freedom has been my fatal dream.” –Thomas Francis Meagher Born in […]

Read More

#OTD in 1848 – A gunfight takes place between Young Ireland Rebels and police at Widow McCormack’s house in Ballingarry, Co Tipperary.

The Young Irelander Rebellion was a failed Irish nationalist uprising led by the Young Ireland movement, part of the wider Revolutions of 1848 that affected most of Europe. It took place on 29 July 1848 in the village of Ballingarry, South Tipperary. After being chased by a force of Young Irelanders and their supporters, an […]

Read More

#OTD in Irish History | 27 June:

1488 – Sir Richard Edgecombe is sent to Ireland with power to grant pardons; he lands at Kinsale on this date. 1782 – The Relief Act gives Catholics rights concerning their education. 1798 – United Irishmen Rebellion: Northern column remains in camp at Croghan. 1824 – Birth of Robert Nugent in Kilkeel, Co Down, who […]

Read More