#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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#OTD in 1877 – Birth of author and revolutionary, Michael O’Hanrahan, in New Ross, Co Wexford.

His father, Richard Hanrahan, was involved in the 1867 Fenian rising. The family moved to Carlow, where Michael was educated at Carlow Christian Brothers’ School and Carlow College Academy. On leaving school he worked various jobs including a period alongside his father in the cork-cutting business. In 1898 he joined the Gaelic League and in […]

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#OTD in 1988 – At Milltown Cemetery in west Belfast, a gunman kills three mourners and injures at least 50 people attending a funeral for IRA members Maireád Farrell, Daniel McCann, and Sean Savage executed in Gibraltar.

Loyalist gunman Michael Stone kills three people at a funeral for IRA members (Maireád Farrell, 31, Daniel McCann, 30, and Sean Savage, 23,) who were executed in Gibraltar by SAS troops. Stone wanted to kill Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams and others whom he believed to be members of the IRA. He claimed the attack […]

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#OTD in 1919 – Sinn Féin member, Robert Barton, escapes from Mountjoy Jail, courtesy of some excellent planning by Michael Collins which involved smuggling a file into the prison.

Robert Barton was born in Co Wicklow into a wealthy Irish Protestant land-owning family; namely of Glendalough House. He was the double first cousin of and close friend of Robert Erskine Childers and would later be best man at the wedding of Robert Erskine Childers and Molly Osgood. He became an officer in the Royal […]

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#OTD in 1921 – Dáil Éireann debated, resolved and finally on 11 March declared war on the British administration.

In January 1921, at his first Dáil meeting after his return to a country gripped by the War of Independence, de Valera introduced a motion calling on the IRA to desist from ambushes and other tactics that were allowing the British to successfully portray it as a terrorist group, and to take on the British […]

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#OTD in 1942 – Death of Irish patriot, Mary MacSwiney.

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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