" A wealth of information..."

"1169 And Counting is a wealth of information on our Republican past and present , and demonstrates how the Irish political landscape , like that of any nation, will never be a black and white issue..."

(From the ‘e-Thursday’ section of the ‘Business Week’ supplement of the ‘Irish Independent’ , 21st August 2008.)



IRISH BLOG AWARDS 2017 - ooops! It seems that our entry application was "not completed in time to be considered.." (?) and, as such, we are not now in the running. But we wish all the best to the successful entrants and to the organisers, and we hope all goes well for them on the day!


Saturday, May 29, 2004

JOSEPH BRENAN ; 1828-1857 : 'Young Ireland' Leader .......


Joseph Brenan was born into Daniel O'Connell's time ; huge crowds attended meetings of 'The Catholic Association' , and one eye-witness gave the following account .......


" The whole district was covered with people . The population within a days march began to arrive on foot shortly after daybreak and continued to arrive , on all sides and by every available approach , 'till noon . It was impossible from any one point to see the entire meeting - the number is supposed to have reached between 500,000 and 700,000 persons ."

The population was upset ; they had to contend with hunger , evictions and early death . They were living like animals - a visitor from France , Gustav de Beaumont , described the conditions that Joseph Brenan , too, would have seen in Ireland at that time (ie the early 19th Century) -

- " Imagine four walls of dried mud , which the rain , as it falls, easily restores to its primitive condition , having for its roof a little straw of some sods , for its chimney a hole cut in the roof , or very frequently the door through which alone the smoke finds an issue . One single appartment (sic ?) contains father , mother , children and sometimes a grandfather or grandmother ; there is no furniture in this wretched hovel - a single bed of straw serves the entire family .


Five or six half-naked children may be seen crouched near a miserable fire , the ashes of which cover a few potatoes , the sole nourishment of the whole family . "


The English 'Establishment' and their 'Landlord' puppets had their fine gala-balls and sporting-days , while the Irish 'lived' in " wretched hovels ...". However - we all of us have to answer to our God one day .......

(MORE LATER).



WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

A DRIVE TO CORK CITY .......


".......If left alone , we would pass as a mixture of Black and Tans and Auxiliaries and we all struck a superior posture in the car , as they do . We were ready to engage them if we had to , but they were not our target this day ......."


" We were now in Washington Street , Cork , and soon we could see to the end of it . We watched the junction with Main Street - all clear , but what would the Grand Parade reveal ? We swept gracefully into it in a right hand quarter-circle , while our eyes instinctively swept from Patrick Street corner to the Mall , noting particularly Tuckey Street corner . Soon we were past that abode of a vile mix - RIC and Black and Tans . Turning left , we were in the South Mall ; a few hundred yards , and we turned right over Parliament Bridge , across the south channel of the River Lee .

Crossing the quay , we went up Barrack Street and past Cat Fort Gate , where a Black and Tan sentry stood with sloped rifle . He brought his right hand across to the small of the butt , then down smartly to his side - a salute for us ! The first half of it looked bad , but good manners carry one a long way ; a few of us returned the salute wearily ! Some little time after passing by Cat Fort , we over-ran our road to the left - there was some doubt as to where the next road to the left led , and we decided to enquire . This proved to be more troublesome than we expected : we could see people approaching us as if hurrying to work , yet they never reached us . They turned in a doorway or a gateway or a street , so we rushed to the corner of the street to shout after them but they had vanished !

We felt that we were not popular . At length we chased a young man going in our own direction , and grabbed him as he turned in a wicket-gate - he was frightened , but would tell us nothing ......."

(MORE LATER).



BREAKAWAY PARTIES HAVE POOR RECORD .......


By Carol Coulter.

(First published in 'The Irish Times' newspaper on Monday 22nd April 1985).

Reproduced here in 7 parts .

[7 of 7].


In the next election , in 1981 , the 'Workers Party' , formed ten years earlier out of a split in Sinn Fein , won a seat in the Dail (sic- Leinster House) after three attempts in the three previous elections . In 1982 it won three seats , with 2.3 per cent of the vote , but lost one in the subsequent election , though its share of the vote remained almost the same .

The only other small party to have won seats in the Dail (sic) is Sinn Fein , which contested the 1957 election on an abstentionist platform and won four seats ; it lost them all in 1961 , and did not contest another election until 20 years later , in 1981 , when it was heavily involved in the election campaigns of the H-Block prisoners who ran to highlight the Hunger-Strike .

Of obvious necessity , they ran on an abstentionist platform and two of the Republican prisoners , Paddy Agnew and Kieran Doherty , were elected ; Doherty died on Hunger-Strike , and Paddy Agnew did not run in 1982 .

[END of -'BREAKAWAY PARTIES HAVE POOR RECORD...'].
(Tomorrow - 'GETTING OUT' ; from 'New Statesman and Society' magazine , 1988).






Friday, May 28, 2004

JOSEPH BRENAN ; 1828-1857 : 'Young Ireland' Leader .


Ireland , 1828 ; twenty-one months after the subject of our previous article , Philip Grey , was born in Dublin , a baby was born in Cork (ie in November 1828) - Joseph Brenan . He , too, was born when Daniel O'Connell's star was burning brightly - O'Connell had organised the Irish 'peasantry' (as Westminster referred to them) into what was , in all intent and purpose , a political party .

As stated in the previous article , the Catholic Church was in support of 'The Catholic Association' and allowed (indeed , encouraged) its Priests to act not only as that organisations 'spiritual advisers' , but also as political activists !

British mis-rule was reflected in the general state of unrest throughout the country - huge crowds attended 'Association' meetings , with one eye-witness account of the time stating - " The whole district was covered with people ......."

(MORE LATER).


WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

A DRIVE TO CORK CITY .......


".......Our mission took us through Coolea , Ballyvourney and Liscarragane ; we thought of old heros - Canon O'Leary and Art O'Laoghaire - we were now on the Donoughmore-Blarney-Cork road......."


" For a time we enjoyed the long straight stretches where we could see well ahead of us ; for there was the possibility of meeting with a strong British Army raiding-party of many lorries . That would be their time for such a job - should they come , we would have time to stop and take up defensive positions . But , leaving the Blarney highway , we did not appreciate the lovely woodland road which changed direction so often .

However , we met no enemy and reached St. Ann's safely ; on then to the Kerry Pike where one of our lads stopped to see his mother . Estimating that our time would now be right , without a further stop , we dropped down to the Asylum Road , and got to the end of it without incident ; we crossed the bridge over the northern branch of the Lee . A run of a few hundred yards , and we were moving at a smart pace down the Western Road .

Safety catches were 'off'. There was to be no delay in case of an attempt to interfere with us ; any enemy agents we met who took us for friends were to be given the benefit of the mistake , and we should hope to maintain that relation for some time . Although we were ready for instant action , and the Lewis-Gun and rifles were plain to be seen , we reclined apparently at ease as befitted British Auxiliaries of the better-off class - not those fellows who sat stiffly on hard seats on their Crossley Tenders ......."

(MORE LATER).



BREAKAWAY PARTIES HAVE POOR RECORD .......


By Carol Coulter.

(First published in 'The Irish Times' newspaper on Monday 22nd April 1985).

Reproduced here in 7 parts .

(6 of 7).


Neil Blaney adopted a different course , describing the group around him as 'Independent Fianna Fail', and appearing as an independent in all the results . Although there were other candidates on this ticket , none of them was ever elected .

In 1977 there was another attempt to form a radical party , again involving Noel Browne : he and a number of prominent Labour Party members split to form the Social Labour Party , with Browne as its only TD (sic - Leinster House member).

Quite soon , however , differences emerged between him and other leading members , and when he left Leinster House , the party collapsed .......

(MORE LATER).






Thursday, May 27, 2004

PHILIP GREY ; 1827 - 1857 : AN IRISH MILITARY MAN.......


.......Following the collapse of the Rebel Rising in 1849 (in the Tipperary / Waterford area), Philip Grey made his way to Dublin .......


Although young in years (he was only 22) Philip Grey must have been physically and mentally exhausted - trying to organise men and women into an armed force to hit back against the English , while those same men and women were watching each other , and their children and family "dropping into their graves" must have aged Philip Grey in mind and body ; he died in Dublin on 28th February , 1857 , at 30 years of age , having dedicated the last ten years (ie 1847-1857) of his short life to the Irish Republican Cause.

His name would probably mean nothing to most Irish people today ; we found no mention of the man in three of the reference books we consulted - another 'forgotten hero' , with whom we are proud to be associated .......

[END of 'PHILIP GREY ; 1827 - 1857 : AN IRISH MILITARY MAN'].
(Tomorrow - 'Joseph Brenan ; 1828-1857 : 'Young Ireland' Leader.').



WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


A DRIVE TO CORK CITY .......


".......Our driver , Jim Grey , always started an operation with the one saying - by telling us how he felt . And he always felt the same way .......!"


" Jim Grey took his place at the wheel of the Buick . Sean Murray sat next to him , then Hughie with the Lewis-Gun resting on the windscreen frame . In the back seat Corney sat immediately behind Jim Grey , with Dan Donovan ('Sandow') in the middle , behind Sean Murray . I sat behind Hughie . On the floor at my feet were the Lewis ammunition drums in their carriers . The car stood in the light from the house , and with its own lights burning ; our driver , Jim Grey , got out and walked around the Buick for a final inspection of tyres . Then he took his place again and , grasping the steering-wheel , said with emphasis - " Well , h'anam an dial , lads , but I'm terribly windy ! " A mighty burst of laughter greeted the pronouncement , and in its heartening atmosphere the grey car slipped quietly away ...

We travelled with lights on dim as a rule ; only in certain valleys were the headlamps used , screened by the hills from enemy posts . At that time if you met a car on the road you could be certain it contained the enemy , for no other was allowed by them to travel . Thus , when we travelled and met people on the road , we passed as Black and Tans or Auxiliaries , which put us in some danger from our own people . There was always the chance that some enterprising IRA man might , like Nelson , put his 'blind eye' to the telescope and his good eye on us ! Otherwise , it generally served us well to be mistaken for the enemy . We passed quietly through Coolea and Ballyvourney , and for a short distance along the road to Macroom . Then by quiet roads through Liscarragane , where the great Canon O'Leary (an t-Ahair Peadar) was born . We passed the door where he stood , as a ragged little boy of eight , to watch
and faithfully record the ghastly procession of the Famine .


Then , a few miles more, and we were at Carraig an Ime , where fell the gallant Art O Laoghaire fighting alone against the English . From Carraig an Ime through Ballinagree and Rylane to Donoughmore our journey was uneventful , but tiring on our driver , especially since lights had to be used sparingly . At Donoughmore we were entertained by the Sixth Battalion IRA , and we rested until dawn ; we had time to spare , as we had to wait until the British curfew patrols and armoured cars were withdrawn at 7.30 a.m. We had breakfast and we started off on the Donoughmore-Blaney-Cork road ......."

(MORE LATER).



BREAKAWAY PARTIES HAVE POOR RECORD .......


By Carol Coulter.

(First published in 'The Irish Times' newspaper on Monday 22nd April 1985).

Reproduced here in 7 parts .

(5 of 7).


During the rest of the 1960's , only the three main parties - Fianna Fail , Fine Gael and Labour - were represented in the Dail (sic- Leinster House). Then the 'Arms Trial' produced a crisis in Fianna Fail and the beginnings of two further parties . The first of these was Aontacht Eireann , formed by Kevin Boland in 1971 ; he was joined by Sean Sherwin and Captain James Kelly , one of the key figures in the 'Arms Trial' .

But Sean Sherwin failed to retain his seat in 1973 , and in 1976 Kevin Boland resigned as leader and the party folded . Neil Blaney adopted a different course of action .......

(MORE LATER).






Wednesday, May 26, 2004

PHILIP GREY ; 1827 - 1857 : AN IRISH MILITARY MAN.......


....... Ireland 1849 - Philip Grey was surviving in tough times ; starvation , people hoping for death to relieve their suffering (and the rodents to feast on them , as the dead were left lying where they fell) . Those that could help were asked by their own people to do so .......


One of those not directly effected by 'The Great Hunger' and its accompanying diseases was a certain Protestant clergyman (name not known to this scribbler) who wrote to the then British Prime Minister , 'Lord' John Russell (Russell replaced Robert Peel in that position in June 1846)-

- " My Lord - I have a right to speak for I am a Minister of God . Let me then importune and implore you , my Lord , to stand in the breach between the living and the dead . Tell the assembled Parliament that the people must not any more be left to die . " The good Reverend got his answer from Mr. 'Lord' Russell (May 1849 , British House of 'Commons') -

- " I do not think any effort of this House would , in the present unfortunate state of Ireland , be capable of preventing the dreadful scenes of suffering and death that are now occurring in Ireland . I distinctly repeat that I do not believe it is in the power of this House to do so . I do not feel justified in asking the House for an additional advance of £100,000 which at least would be necessary if the House should say there should be no possible cause of starvation in Ireland . "


Callous bastard .


However , I digress - in September 1849 , Philip Grey , 22 years of age , arrived in Dublin following the collapse of the proposed Rising in the Tipperary / Waterford area , and settled in the town.......

(MORE LATER).


WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

A DRIVE TO CORK CITY .......


"....... March 1921 ; we had been told that a British Army patrol would be on the river in two days time - a plan of attack was put together , and travel arrangements made ......."


" The Buick Tourer was a silent and powerful car that Jim Grey maintained at its original efficiency - we had no fears on that score . Neither had anyone any fears as regards the driving ; Jim himself always proclaimed that he was in mortal terror of coming events - " Glory be to God , lads ," he would exclaim piously , " I'm terribly windy . " This was treated as a standard joke , and now we waited for it as the finale to our preparations !

The car-hood was lowered and strapped down , the top half of the windscreen was removed and a rectangular piece of plate glass was cut and removed from the corner of the lower half , remote from the driver - this was done to provide a convenient rest for the Lewis-Gun when facing forward . Tea was announced , and we adjourned to the house . After grub , night had fallen , which was our best ally . Without its aid , the weak could hardly hope to fight or resist the strong . Now under its friendly cover , we were about to move nearer to the enemy .

Fully armed , we took our places in the Buick . Most of the IRA Column stood around to wish us God speed , and I also suspect , to listen to our drivers usual valedictory ......."

(MORE LATER).


BREAKAWAY PARTIES HAVE POOR RECORD .......


By Carol Coulter.

(First published in 'The Irish Times' newspaper on Monday 22nd April 1985).

Reproduced here in 7 parts .

(4 of 7).


In 1954 , Clann na Poblachta won three seats , but a smaller share of the poll (3.8 per cent). In 1957 , the party got 1.7 per cent of the vote and one seat , and this remained its representation in the Dail (sic- Leinster House) until it was wound-up in 1965 .

The 1940's also saw a split in the Labour Party vote : in 1944 , the 'Irish Transport And General Workers Union' (ITGWU - now known as SIPTU) split from the Labour Party over the latter's relationship with Big Jim Larkin , bringing five TD's (sic- Leinster House members) with it to form the 'National Labour Party' .

The 'National Labour Party' won four seats in the 1944 election , and five in 1948 , when it too joined the first inter-party (Free State) government . In that Administration , it re-united with the Labour Party in 1950 . The split between Noel Browne and Sean MacBride in Clann na Poblachta brought with it the seeds of yet another political party , though these did not come to fruition until 1961 .

In that year (1961) Noel Browne , along with Jack McQuillan , formed the 'National Progressive Democrats' . They fought the General Election and got only 1 per cent of the vote , but it brought two seats . In 1963 , they joined the Labour Party .......

(MORE LATER).






Tuesday, May 25, 2004

PHILIP GREY ; 1827 - 1857 : AN IRISH MILITARY MAN.......


.......An attack on the English Barracks in Cappoquin , Waterford , by the Irish Rebels , on 16th September 1849 , went wrong - Philip Grey escaped from the area and made his way to Dublin . The wretchedness of 'living' conditions in those days , which Philip Grey would have witnessed on his travels around Ireland , would have turned any proud Irish person into a Rebel .......


The Catholic Church had gone on record in that same year of the Cappoquin incident (ie 1849) as stating - " The great majority of poor located here are in a state of starvation , many of them hourly expecting death to relieve them of their sufferings ." Incidentally , that statement was issued in February 1849 , the same month that a 'Grand Ball' was held in Dublin's Mansion House at which it was reported that " ...dancing continued until a late hour of the night and refreshments of a most recherche description were supplied with inexhaustible profusion ..." Thus did the British enjoy themselves during 'The Great Hunger' .

Also making the news that same year (1849) was the statement of an eye-witness to 'living' conditions outside of 'Grand Balls' - " Every village has dead bodies lying unburied for many days . Almost every hovel in the suburb of this town (Ballinrobe , Galway) has its corpse . May God forgive our rulers for this cruel conduct towards God's creatures here . The poor are dropping into their graves in multitudes . "

However , not all on the island of Ireland were effected by 'The Great Hunger'.......

(MORE LATER).


WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

A DRIVE TO CORK CITY .


" Early in March 1921 , our IRA Column was located at Cumuiclumhain , Ballyvourney . Things had quietened down since Coolnacahera , and the days were peaceful . Then one evening I heard : " Hughie , you're wanted . Mick , you're wanted ." Hughie was Eugene O'Sullivan , our Lewis-Gunner , and Mick was myself , his assistant . The speaker was Dan Donovan ('Sandow'). Dan's eyes were bright and he was smiling . We knew something was afoot ; we followed him into Twomey's , our headquarters .

Within , we found our Brigadier , Sean O'Hegarty ; my brother Pat , our Commandant ; Jim Grey , our driver ; Sean Murray , our instructor , and Corney O'Sullivan , our engineer . Sean came to the point quickly - with him and with all his Officers there was no formality . While the highest proficiency in military skill had been attained in the use of arms and by necessary exercises , yet formal salutations and the like were intolerable to him , and indeed to all concerned . Now he addressed us thus -

- " Flurrie has found out that Strickland and a party will be going on a trip down the river from Cork the day after tomorrow . We'll try and sink them at the Marina . Dan will be in charge ; Jim will drive the Buick , Sean and Corney are going , and Hughie and Mick with the Lewis . Ye will go to Donoughmore tonight by the old route . After the British curfew patrols are withdrawn in the morning in the city , ye must get to the southern-side of the river . Then stay tomorrow night at Ballygarvan . Mick Murphy will meet ye at Kaper Daly's pub , Farmers Cross , on the following morning , and take ye in to the city . Be as careful as ye can . "

We had a job ; it was time to get ready for our journey ......."

(MORE LATER).


BREAKAWAY PARTIES HAVE POOR RECORD .......


By Carol Coulter.

(First published in 'The Irish Times' newspaper on Monday 22nd April 1985).

Reproduced here in 7 parts .

(3 of 7).


Clann na Talmhan (1938-1965) had a rival political party in the form of Clann na Poblachta , which is perhaps better remembered , although it only briefly had as much support as Clann na Talmhan and did not last as long . It was founded as a radical Irish Republican party by Sean MacBride in 1946 , and the following year won two out of three by-elections , defeating Fianna Fail .

The General Election of 1948 marked its high point ; it won 13 per cent of the vote and 10 seats . It too entered the first inter-party (Free State) government , and one of its members , Noel Browne , held the key Ministry of Health . This provoked the 'Mother and Child' controversy , when Browne's progressive proposals were repudiated by the government , including his own party colleagues .

In the next election the party lost heavily , emerging with 4.1 per cent of the vote and only two seats . Even Sean MacBride lost his seat .......

(MORE LATER).






Monday, May 24, 2004

PHILIP GREY ; 1827 - 1857 : AN IRISH MILITARY MAN.......


....... November 1848 - informers in the ranks of 'The Young Ireland' Movement had told their British pay-masters about the proposed jail-break of William Smith O'Brien from Clonmel Jail ; Irish Rebel leader John O'Leary and about twenty other Irish Rebels were 'arrested' by the Brits , but Philip Grey escaped and fled to France , where he landed in April/May 1849 .......


Philip Grey was not long in Paris , France , when he was told that one of the Rebel leaders in Ireland , James Fintan Lalor , was organising for another challenge against English mis-rule in Ireland ; he returned to the South of Ireland (Tipperary/Waterford area) and , working with Lalor's men and women , soon established a network of Rebel fighters , numbering several-hundred strong , and set-about organising the importation of arms for the proposed Rising ... but fate intervened -

- an attack on the English Barracks in Cappoquin , Waterford , by the Irish Rebels , on 16th September 1849 , went wrong and led to the collapse of the insurgent Movement in the area ; in the confusion that followed , Philip Grey escaped and made his way to Dublin . It was a wonder in itself that any armed opposition at all could be raised against the English , at that time .......

(MORE LATER).



WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

COOLNACAHERA and COOMNACLOHY .......


"....... The British Auxiliaries were questioning old Liam Jer as to the whereabouts of any " Shinners " ; Liam told them he had seen some "soldiers" earlier on that day ......."


" The British Auxiliaries were interested in these 'soldiers' - " How were they dressed ? Had they helmets on them ? What did they wear on their heads ? "
" Nothing at all on their heads ," said Liam .
" How were they dressed , old man ? "
" They had overcoats on their shoulders and breeches like them , " pointing to an Auxie's riding breeches , " and they had brown boots and gaiters . "
" Ah !" , said the Brits , " were there many of them ? "
" About two hundred , " said Liam.
" What did they look like ? What kind of men were they ? "
" Oh , fine , strapping young men , only one old man with grey hair , and I had great pity for him . "
" Why ? " , asked the Auxies .
" He was carrying a very heavy gun . It must be one of those machine-guns . Indeed , I had no pity for any other one of them , whoever they were . "

The Auxies looked doubtfully at Liam's small yard and the narrow road . Then one of them spoke - " Can I turn my car here ? "
" Begor , I always turn mine there anyway , " Liam replied .


Liam's car was one donkey-power .......

[END of 'COOLNACAHERA and COOMNACLOHY'].
(Tomorrow - March 1921 : 'A Drive To Cork City').



BREAKAWAY PARTIES HAVE POOR RECORD .......


By Carol Coulter.

(First published in 'The Irish Times' newspaper on Monday 22nd April 1985).

Reproduced here in 7 parts .

(2 of 7).


The next new party was radical : this was Clann na Talmhan , founded in 1938 to represent the small farmers of the West . Together with a number of independent farmers' candidates , it won 10.6 per cent of the vote and 14 seats in the 1943 general election ; ten of those seats going to Clann na Talmhan . In the general election the following year it won nine seats , and , in 1948 , seven seats . It entered the first inter-party government along with Clann na Poblachta , the Labour Party , the National Labour Party , Fine Gael and a number of independents .

In the next election , three years later (1951) its number of seats fell again , to six . It declined steadily thereafter , winning five seats in 1954 , three in 1957 - following which it supported the second inter-party government - and two in 1961 .

Clann na Talmhan collapsed in 1965 , twenty-seven years after its foundation .......

(MORE LATER).






Sunday, May 23, 2004

PHILIP GREY ; 1827 - 1857 : AN IRISH MILITARY MAN.......


....... Philip Grey was in County Meath in mid-1848 when he learned that 'The Young Ireland' Rising had started ; he tried to organise the Rebels in Meath , but failed - so he left for Tipperary .......


He joined-up with William Smith O'Brien and James Stephens and took part in the 'Battle Of Ballingarry' . On 29 July 1848 , the Rising collapsed and those involved dispersed . One of those in command of the Irish Rebels , John O'Mahony , placed Philip Grey and John Savage in charge of organising the Waterford area , and an attack on the British Military Barracks in Portlaw was carried out ; however , before the Irish Rebels could take things further , the Rebel leader John O'Leary requested Philip Grey to assist his team to 'spring' William Smith O'Brien and other Rebels from prison - they were being held in Clonmel Jail in Tipperary .

Arrangements were put in place for the rescue attempt , and a date agreed - 8th November 1848 . But informers were at work , and the English were aware of the Rebel plans ; John O'Leary and about twenty of his men were 'arrested' by the Brits , but Philip Grey escaped and went 'on-the-run' in County Waterford for a few months but , such was the 'man-hunt' for him by the enemy , he was forced to flee the Country for France , where he arrived in April/May , 1849 .......

(MORE LATER).



WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

COOLNACAHERA and COOMNACLOHY .......


"....... February 1921 ; there was fifty-two British Army lorries in our vicinity ; one IRA man severely wounded , two cottages , two farmhouses and a hayshed burned to the ground by the Brits. But there was also humour that same day ......."


" Paddy Beag and another old man were behind the rocks at Coolnacahera , unconscious of any impending disturbance . Suddenly the firing started and deflected bullets whined high over them . At their highest speed , the two old men started home . Presently , in comparative safety , they stopped to draw their breath ; " Is'nt it an awful thing , Paddy , to see two oul'lads like us having to run like this . Or what is the country coming ta ? " " It is then ," said Paddy , " but these times won't last always . God is good . " " Ah, " said the other oul'fella , " sure I know He's good , BUT WHAT CAN HE DO ? "

Liam Jer was an old man whose legs were somewhat reduced in efficiency by the march of time , but whose peculiar wit and tongue flourished unimpaired . He lived in a small farmhouse on the side of the narrow road from Poul na Bro to Kilnamartyra . The rocky and steep Rahoona Hill cast its shadow , in the evening , on Liam's hacienda . We scarcely ever passed by without meeting Liam . " Conas ta'n sibh . Bhfuil aon oul'news agaibh ? " (or - in 'Dub-speak' : " How'ya - what's the story ? ") was always his greeting . He took the greatest pleasure in answering questions put to him by enemy forces . This evening Liam met the British Auxiliaries just as they stopped a Crossley truck opposite his door . They dismounted and quickly came to the point - " Did you see any Shinners today ? "

"What !" said Liam ; " Any Shinners , " they repeated , " seen any ? " " What are Shinners ? " asked Liam . " Oh , Shinners - the IRA , you know . " " I don't know them either , " he said , " but I saw soldiers passing ..." " Soldiers ! No soldiers passed this way today ! " the Brits replied . " Oh, but they did ," said Liam to them , " they went up that way , " pointing with his stick to Rahoona . " Were they some of our men ? " " They could be , " said Liam , " but they were not dressed like ye ......."

(MORE LATER).


BREAKAWAY PARTIES HAVE POOR RECORD .


By Carol Coulter.

(First published in 'The Irish Times' newspaper on Monday 22nd April 1985).

Reproduced here in 7 parts .

(1 of 7).


The history of breakaway parties in Ireland is not encouraging for those who may be thinking of staking their political careers on the formation of a new one .

Most of the smaller parties which littered the political landscape in the 1930's , 1940's and 1950's either collapsed or merged with larger ones . The first such party was The Centre Party , formed in 1932 by a number of independent TD's (sic- ie Leinster House members), including Paddy Belton . They were joined later by James Dillon .

The Centre Party was conservative and pro-Treaty (ie - the 6th December 1921 'Treaty of Surrender') and won over 9 per cent of the vote and eleven seats in 1932 . In 1937 , it merged with the Blueshirts and Cumann na nGaedhail to form Fine Gael .

(MORE LATER).