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April 21, 2011



Date Published: {J}


Infanticide charge

An unsavoury sensation – fortunately of a kind that is of rare occurrence in this country – occurred in Tuam this week, when the dead body of a newly born infant was found in a back yard at The Mall, Tuam. The police pursued investigations, and the result of which a young unmarried girl was placed under arrest.

Land sale

Official intelligence has been given of the completion of the very extensive St. George Estate, situate in the counties of Galway and Roscommon. The prices has been arranged for some time back, but the sale was not effected in consequence of a dispute over extensive grass lands, tenanted and untenanted, which remained at issue.

Defied constable

At Galway Petty Sessions, Martin Ward was charged with being drunk and disorderly. The prosecuting constable said Ward got three months’ hard labour on a former occasion for assaulting the police and was only three weeks out of jail. He defied the constable to arrest him, but with the assistance of another constable, he brought him to the barracks. He was fined 10s or fourteen days.

Returned Yank

Bryan Fitzpatrick, who was described as a ‘returned Yank’, was charged with being drunk on Mainguard Street. It was stated that the defendant was for a time in the Asylum and was sent back from America where, he stated himself, he was not a success. Defendant promised to take the pledge, and the case was adjourned to enable him to produce the pledge certificate.


April snow

On Tuesday morning, Loughrea was visited by one of the most severe snowstorms experienced for some time. There was a continuous fall throughout the day, covering the ground with snow more than three inches in depth. Traffic was considerably impeded and agricultural work now in full swing in the district had to be abandoned. Pedestrians were also hampered getting to and from their business. Livestock, particularly young lambs, are suffering from the increase in cold. Fear is entertained for animals in the mountainous district.

New Census

Gardaí in Clifden and throughout Connemara have been busy during the past week distributing forms for the coming Census on Sunday next. In no part of the country have the duties been so arduous as in Connemara where long miles of wild mountain county have to be covered often to reach one house. All the men have taken a cheerful interest in the work and they are not dismayed at the prospect of the miles to be covered during the coming weeks when the forms will have to be collected.

Families burnt out

A fire, which burned two families out of a house at the Mall, Tuam, broke out on Wednesday night. The two families were safely removed, some of the children having to be taken from their beds. Most of the furniture was saved, but the house after burning for over four hours, was totally destroyed, and the roof, which was a thatched one, fell in.

The outbreak was noticed about 11pm. Gardai under Supt. P. Cronin and Sergt. Reynolds, were on the scene in a few minutes and got the town hose into action. They were assisted by civilians, and they took steps to see that the adjoining houses, which are slated were safely cut off.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


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Athenry fail to take chances as they bow out of Junior Cup



Date Published: 29-Jan-2013

Athenry FC 1

Kilbarrack United 2

(After extra time)

For the second year in succession Athenry were done in extra time in the FAI Junior Cup as last season’s beaten finalist’s came from behind to snatch an excellent game in Moanbawn on Sunday afternoon.

On a heavy pitch that was only playable following extensive groundwork by club officials all morning, the home side were by far the better side in the opening half, but failed to take advantage of a number of opportunities that came their way.

An Alan O’Donovan penalty gave them a merited advantage just after the restart, but thereafter were on the back foot as Kilbarrack took over, but for all their pressing, the home rearguard were dealing comfortably with their forays.

However they were struck a body blow just six minutes from time, as big striker Keith Kirwan was left all alone at the far post to head the equaliser and from that point on the Dubliners were the better side.

They started off the extra time in the ascendancy and enjoying all the momentum before striking for a good winning goal on 104 minutes. A strong bench allowed them to make some necessary changes and it was not a facility that was available to Athenry manager Gabriel Glavin.

With Gary Forde and Gary Delaney out through suspension following their sending off against OLBC in the previous round, and Seamie Crowe injured, it left their bench rather threadbare with just a number of young squad players available.

Playing with the aid of the slight incline and any wind advantage going, the home side had a Connor Cannon effort on target in the opening minute, while John Meleady was just over with a flick at the other end.

Meleady then tested Andrew Walsh who saved comfortably, before the goalkeeper pulled off a brilliant double save on 14 minutes.

Firstly he went full length to push away a Meleady shot and was then back on his feet to parry David Jackson’s close-range rebound.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

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