#OTD in 1831 – Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa is born in Rosscarbery, Co Cork.

Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa was born in a small village called Reenascreena near Rosscarbery, Co Cork. He was the son of a tenant farmer, Denis O’Donovan and his wife Nellie O’Driscoll. While a young boy, the failure of the main food crop of the Irish population which was the potato, in successive years between 1845 and […]

Read More

#OTD in 1842 – Birth of journalist and leading member of the Fenians, John Devoy in Kill, Co Kildare.

‘The most dangerous enemy of this country [Britain] Ireland has produced since Wolfe Tone’. –The London Times John Devoy was born in Kill, Co Kildare in 1842 just prior to The Great Hunger (1845-1852) which saw approximately one million Irish starve to death and another million emigrate to America and elsewhere. After Irish defeats by […]

Read More

#OTD in Irish History | 3 September:

In the Liturgical calendar, it is the Feast day of St McNisse, baptised by St Patrick, and later consecrated him the first abbot-bishop of Kells, which became the diocese of Connor. 1649 – The Siege of Drogheda begins. 1654 – The first Protectorate parliament meets; Ireland is represented by 30 members. 1658 – Nine years […]

Read More

#OTD in 1876 – The ship Catalpa arrives in the U.S. with Irish Fenian prisoners rescued from Australia.

The “Fremantle Six” were Irish political prisoners who made an audacious escape from the notorious British prison in West Australia aboard the U.S. whaling ship “Catalpa” in 1876. Captain Anthony and the Catalpa arrive at Rockingham beach near Fremantle to rendezvous with the escaped prisoners; after a fierce confrontation with the Georgette, an armed British […]

Read More

#OTD in 1890 – Death of nationalist, poet and novelist, John Boyle O’Reilly.

“The world is large when its weary leagues two loving hearts divide, “But the world is small when your enemy is loose on the other side.” –John Boyle O’Reilly As a youth in Ireland he was a member of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, for which crime he was transported to Western Australia. After escaping to […]

Read More

#OTD in 1916 – Roger Casement, Irish patriot, is hanged by the English in Pentonville Prison, London.

Fuair siad bás ar son Saoirse na hÉireann. “Self government is our right, a thing born to us at birth. A thing no more to be doled out to us by another people than the right to life itself; than the right to feel the sun or smell the flowers or to love our kind.” […]

Read More

#OTD in 1915 – Nationalist Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa is buried in Glasnevin cemetery, Dublin.

“WHATEVER HIS CRIME, THERE WAS A GREATER CRIMINAL THAN HE – THE ENGLISH GOVERNMENT WHO MADE HIM WHAT HE WAS.” On his deathbed at age 83, Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa sent for his old friends, John Devoy and Richard O’Sullivan Burke. He died a tired old warrior on 29 June 1915 in St Vincent’s Hospital on […]

Read More

#OTD in 1844 – Birth of poet and novelist, John Boyle O’Reilly, in Co Meath.

Poet, writer and nationalist John Boyle O’Reilly was born in Dowth Castle, Co Meath, near Drogheda. For his part in the IRB and Fenian conspiracy, O’Reilly was sentenced to twenty years’ penal servitude. He served nearly two years in English prisons before being put aboard the convict ship Hougoumont, and transported to Australia in 1868, […]

Read More

#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 […]

Read More

1916 Easter Rising | Desmond FitzGerald and The German Prince

During the occupation of the GPO during the 1916 Rising, Desmond FitzGerald commented ‘I was bemused by the general attitude of security’. At the height of the battle he was in the midst of the conflagration that shook the GPO garrison. Ever the sceptic, Desmond FitzGerald, who was in charge of rations, mentions in his […]

Read More