Galway In Days Gone By

Army communications equipment proves popular with youngsters at a careers information day in Mountbellew in May 1970.
Army communications equipment proves popular with youngsters at a careers information day in Mountbellew in May 1970.

1917

Highway robbery

On Thursday, about 5.45a.m., the mail car returning to Loughrea from Athenry was attacked and held up by two disguised men at Cottage Hill about a half-mile from Loughrea, apparently with the object of robbery of Old Age Pension silver.

The driver was pulled off the car, beaten, gagged and tied to a gate with a rope. All the bags, except the parcel sacks and bag containing the silver were emptied on the road by one of the men, while the other held the horse. The man engaged in emptying the bags remarked that what they wanted was not there, and having released the driver, both decamped. It is understood that in a bag which the raiders failed to discover was a sum amounting to almost £300. The police have been enquiring into the matter, but so far, no arrests have been made.

Shooting outrage

Two shooting outrages occurred in the county during the past week. On the night of the 28th ult., at Loughgeorge, a man named Michael Coyne was fired at, and the shot lodged in his leg. He was found in a dazed condition a short time afterwards, and was removed to the Galway County Hospital, where he is being treated. Coyne can give no explanation to the police as to the cause of the occurrence, and is altogether very reticent about the matter.

The second outrage took place on last Friday at Woodstock, near Moycullen, when a room on the house of a Mrs. Noone was fired into, two shots being discharged. There were four sons of Mrs. Noone sleeping in the room fired into, and, as in the former case, no explanation can be given. The police are actively engaged investigating the two outrages.

Orchard robbing

There appears to be something in the nature of an epidemic in Galway for pilfering orchards, and owners of fruit gardens are experiencing hardships in having their ripening fruit stolen after they had devoted much care and attention to cultivation. During the week, a lady, assisted by members of her family, collected over a thousand apples in her garden, and placed them in a hamper in the garden while they went to lunch. On their return, they found that the hamper had been emptied.

1942

Plucky rescue

At about 6.40p.m. on Tuesday, September 29th, an elderly woman who had ventured out on to one of the lower springboards at the men’s bathing place at Blackrock, Salthill, fell into the water. The incident was seen from her house by Miss Craughwell who immediately notified her bother, Mr. Lawrence Craughwell, who was just sitting down to a meal at the time.

Mr. Craughwell rushed to the scene about 150 yards away and fully-clothed, jumped into the sea, which was in flood tide at the time and, with some difficulty, managed to bring the woman ashore. On enquiry at the hospital, our representative was informed that the woman was progressing favourably.

Mad kleptomaniac

A man who was described by his solicitor as “a mad kleptomaniac rather than a criminal”, appeared at Galway Court on Thursday, before District Justice Mac Giollarnath, on five charges of larceny and one charge of having in his possession a quantity of poteen on which the full revenue duty had not been paid.

In pleading for his client, Mr. Frank Conway, Messrs. Emerson and Conway, said that this was one of the most remarkable larceny cases he had ever experienced. Defendant had made no attempt to convert the articles or to enrich himself at other people’s expense, but had stolen them as a mad kleptomaniac rather than a criminal.

In convicting the defendant and sentencing him to six months’ imprisonment on each of the larceny charges, the District Justice said that he would make the sentences suspensory chiefly because the goods had been recovered. In this case of the poteen, he imposed a fine of £100, mitigated to £6.

Mayor’s Fuel Fund

At a cost of early £1,000, close on 700 poor families in Galway city were provided with one cwt. of free fuel every week during last winter by the Mayor’s Fuel Fund.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.