#OTD in 1922 – Led by Rory O’Connor, forces against the Anglo-Irish Treaty seized the Four Courts in Dublin.

Anti-Treaty forces led by Rory O’Connor seized the Four Courts. O’Connor, with approximately 200 men under his command. Their hope was that the British army, who were still based in Dublin, would attack them, thereby reigniting the war of independence and perhaps healing the split. Arthur Griffith, who was the President of Dáil Éireann, wanted […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 4 April:

1774 – Death of novelist, playwright and poet, Oliver Goldsmith. 1818 – Birth of soldier, journalist, and writer of boys’ stories, Mayne Reid (pseudonym of Thomas Mayne) in Ballyroney, Co Down. 1838 – The Sirius was a side-wheel wooden-hulled steamship built in 1837 for the London-Cork postal route operated by the Saint George Steam Packet Company. At […]

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#OTD in 1919 – Third meeting of Dáil Éireann – Éamon de Valera was elected President of Dáil Éireann (or Príomh Aire) and appointed a cabinet.

De Valera issued a statement saying that “There is in Ireland at this moment only one lawful authority, and that authority is the elected Government of the Irish Republic”. When the First Dáil met in 1919, Éamon de Valera was the president of Sinn Féin and thus the natural choice for leadership. However he had […]

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#OTD in 1872 – Birth of founder of Sinn Féin and co-signatory of the Anglo-Irish Treaty, Arthur Griffith, in Dublin.

Arthur Griffith was one of the most important players in Irish Independence. He founded Sinn Féin in 1905 as an Irish nationalist party whose objective was “to establish in Ireland’s capital a national legislature endowed with the moral authority of the Irish nation”. Griffith’s fierce criticism of the Irish Parliamentary Party’s alliance with British Liberalism […]

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#OTD in 1880 – Birth of political activist, Sean Hales, in Ballinadee, Co Cork.

During the 1921 elections, Hales was elected to the Second Dáil as a Sinn Féin member for the Cork Mid, North, South, South East and West constituency.   During the 1922 general election, he was elected to the Third Dáil as a Pro-Treaty Sinn Féin Teachta Dála (TD) for the same constituency. He received 4374 […]

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#OTD in 1892 – Birth of Tom Maguire, an Irish republican who held the rank of Commandant-General in the Western Command of the IRA and led the South Mayo flying column.

Tom Maguire was an Irish republican who held the rank of commandant-general in the Western Command of the IRA and led the South Mayo flying column.   On 18 September 1920, the Mayo Brigade was reorganised, it was split up into four separate brigades. Tom Maguire was appointed commander of the South Mayo one.   […]

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#OTD in 1872 – Birth of Irish patriot, Mary MacSwiney (Maire Nic Shuibhne), in London.

Mary MacSwiney (Máire Nic Suibhne) was born in London to an Irish father and English mother. The family returned to Cork when she was six and she was educated at St. Angela’s Ursuline convent school. She obtained a teaching diploma at Cambridge University and taught at schools in England before returning to Cork on the […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 26 March:

1787 – The Tumultuous Risings Act imposed penalties for rioting and for interference with the collection of tithes. 1838 – William Edward Hartpole Lecky, historian and philosopher, was born in Blackrock, Co Dublin. 1854 – Harry Furniss, caricaturist, was born in Wexford. 1856 – Birth of New Zealand statesman and Prime Minister from 1912 to […]

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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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#OTD in 2017 – Death of Martin McGuinness, a former IRA commander and Sinn Fein political leader who helped negotiate peace in Northern Ireland after decades of sectarian violence, and became a senior official in its power-sharing government.

Martin McGuinness, former IRA chief of staff and a key figure in the Northern Ireland peace process, died just two months after stepping down as deputy first minister. The 66-year-old Irish republican died after a short illness in Derry’s Altnagelvin hospital surrounded by his family. He had a rare genetic disease caused by deposits of […]

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