#OTD in 1861 – The Irish Brigade fights at the First Battle of Bull Run under General Michael Corcoran from Co Sligo.

General Michael Corcoran led the 69th New York Militia, Irish Brigade, into action at the First Battle of Bull Run and was taken prisoner. Corcoran was one of the founders of the Fenian Brotherhood in America. While in jail, Corcoran wrote, “One half of my heart is Erin’s, and the other half is America’s. God […]

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#OTD in 1745 – At the Battle of Fontenoy, near Tourney in modern Belgium, the Irish Brigade of the French army under Lieutenant Charles O’Brien repulses the British and wins the day.

The role of the Irish Brigade at the Battle of Fontenoy, where the French army won a notable victory over the British and Dutch, has been regarded as the greatest of Irish battle honours. However, this event is now largely forgotten, at least in this country. But that they once loomed very large in the […]

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#OTD in 1981 – Joe McDonnell begins his hunger strike at the H Blocks in Long Kesh prison.

Fuair siad bás ar son Saoirse na hÉireann. McDonnell was born on Slate Street in the Falls Road of west Belfast on 14 Sept 1951, and was the fifth of 10 children and went to a nearby Roman Catholic school. McDonnell was arrested in Operation Demetrius and interned on the prison ship HMS Maidstone. He […]

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#OTD in 1902 – Birth of medical student and nationalist revolutionary, Kevin Barry, in Dublin.

Kevin Barry was 18 years old when he was hanged in Mountjoy Jail on 1 November 1920. His death at such a young age is possibly the most poignant in Irish history. He is one of a group of IRA members executed in 1920-21 collectively known as ‘The Forgotten Ten’. Barry’s execution outraged nationalist public […]

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#OTD in 1862 – The Irish Brigade suffered over 60% casualties at the Battle of Antietam at an area that came to be known as Bloody Lane.

At the Battle of Antietam, the Irish Brigade led its division in attacking the infamous Bloody Lane. In preparation for the deadly work ahead, Father William Corby, one of the brigade’s chaplains and future president of Notre Dame, rode down the firing line and administered a general rite of absolution to the men. Thomas Meagher […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 17 September:

1711 – John Holwell, surgeon and survivor of ‘Black Hole of Calcutta’ is born in Dublin. 1798 – 3,000 French troops depart for Ireland from Brest. 1862 – The Irish Brigade suffered over 60% casualties at the Battle of Antietam at an area that came to be known as Bloody Lane. Over 500 Irish Brigade […]

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#OTD in 1861 – The Irish Brigade fights at the First Battle of Bull Run under General Michael Corcoran from Co Sligo.

General Michael Corcoran led the 69th New York Militia, Irish Brigade, into action at the First Battle of Bull Run and was taken prisoner. Corcoran was one of the founders of the Fenian Brotherhood in America. While in jail, Corcoran wrote, “One half of my heart is Erin’s, and the other half is America’s. God […]

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#OTD in 1981 – Death of Joe McDonnell, from Lenadoon, Belfast, after 61 days on hunger strike.

Fuair siad bás ar son Saoirse na hÉireann. Joe McDonnell was a member of the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA), who died in the 1981 Irish hunger strike. McDonnell was born on Slate Street in the Falls Road of west Belfast on 14 Sept 1951, and was the fifth of 10 children and went to […]

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#OTD in 1745 – At the Battle of Fontenoy, near Tourney in modern Belgium, the Irish Brigade of the French army under Lieutenant Charles O’Brien repulses the British and wins the day.

The role of the Irish Brigade at the Battle of Fontenoy, where the French army won a notable victory over the British and Dutch, has been regarded as the greatest of Irish battle honours. However, this event is now largely forgotten, at least in this country. But that they once loomed very large in the […]

Read More