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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Enda Cunningham

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The Galway Regional Hospital nursing Class of 1966. Front row, from left: Rosario O'Keeffe, Nuala O'Dowd, Mary Burke, Mary Gallagher, Bridie McHugh, Phil Townley, Brid McDonnell and Claire Moclair. Second row: Imelda Mohan, Ann Glynn, Mary Feerick, Marie O'Dowd, Mary Naughton, Deirdre Higgins, Mary Gannon and Maureen Grealy. Third row: Maria Drake, Mary Cunningham, Nora Hogan, Eileen McHugh, Josephine McMahon and Maura Kemmoona. Back row: Colette Smith, Mary Holleran, June Lynch, Martha O'Neill, Josephine Trench, Josephine Dowd, Stella Grogan and Maureen Bannon.

1916

Boy hero

Not all the deeds of heroism are performed amid the heat and excitement of battle. Little James Finnerty, of Athenry, a lad of nine, by his heroism, on Thursday last, the 28th September, deserves the highest award that it is in the gift of the Royal Humane Society to bestow.

It has been said that the modern schoolboy has degenerated. The simple story we tell below is a conclusive answer, and needs no epic style to adorn it. The deed, we trust, will act as an inspiration throughout the little lad’s career.

On the evening of the 28th September, a little girl named Christina Collins, aged   four years, tumbled off Athenry bridge into the river, and was swept away by the current.

A young lad named James Finnerty, aged 9 years, who witnessed the occurrence, ran along the road which adjoins the river, and, as the child was swept from under the archway of a second bridge, 100 yards further down, young Finnerty plunged into the stream, caught the girl by the hair, and between wading and swimming, held her head over the water until both were assisted out by a young man named Cleary.

Had the current taken the child a few yards further, there would have been little hope of rescue. Save for the shock, the child was little the worse of her immersion.

Lucky escape

During the thunder storm in Connemara on Wednesday night week, the lightning entered the house of Mr. MI Connolly, and split a steel hay fork which was standing near the door, and tore up a part of the hearth and broke the hob. The occupants had a miraculous escape.

1941

Salthill’s needs

Vigorous criticism of the Galway Corporation’s attitude towards Salthill was voiced at a meeting attended by about 130 Salthill residents in the Pavilion, Salthill. Many of the amenities essential to the development of a seaside resort were lacking, it was pointed out, and it was held that some of the works undertaken at Salthill had been allowed to deteriorate into eyesores, or had not justified the expense.

Among the improvements suggested were: the cleaning of the foreshore; better sanitary accommodation; the provision of a railing that would make the Promenade safe for pedestrians; the provision of shelters on the Promenade and seats in the Park; the provision of amusements.

Mrs. Emerson (Eglinton Hotel) said of the old Garda barracks at Salthill that she offered to dispose of it to the Corporation so that they could provide up-to-date baths there.

She believed that proper baths at that place – a very suitable place – would be a paying proposition. She got a typewritten reply     stating that the Corporation were not interested.

Mrs. Emerson referred to complaints that she had heard about the condition of the bathing boxes and said that the Corporation should have the boxes inspected occasionally to see that they were kept in a sanitary condition.

Tea ration doubles

The Minister for Supplies has decided to double the householder’s tea ration for the week commencing October 19. The new ration will be one ounce per week instead of the half-ounce which has been in operation since mid-April, 1941.

General Election

These rumours about the imminence of a General Election are disturbing. It is not desired by the rank and file of either of the big parties in Dáil Éireann and it most certainly is not desired by the general public, however much they may “grouse” about existing conditions and put the blame on Mr. de Valera’s Government.

Yet we are credibly informed that instructions have been given to the Government organisations to make all needful preparations for a General Election in the immediate future.

There are even rumours that the upheaval may take place next month, though these are discounted in responsible circles.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

 

Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

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on

During an ESB power strike in April 1972, petrol pumps had to be operated with a winder, but Declan Forde of Prospect Hill, Gawlay City, found a more novel way of doing it - using a bicycle. The back tyreless wheel of the bicycle was connected to the pump by a belt, with the pedals rotating as petrol was pumped. Declan commented at the time: "This unique method brought us more customers, because by using the bike we pumped the petrol three times faster than the ordinary ESB current." Also in the photograph are Pat Kenehan (right) watching Joe Flaherty operate the pump.

1921

Bad buying policy

It is interesting and useful to speculate how far the conditions that prevailed at Galway great annual fair on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week were due to its postponement on the one hand, and to the circumstances of our time on the other.

No doubt, the enforced adjournment and the uncertainty as to when the fair would be held combined to reduce the attendance.

It is possible that stock which, in the ordinary course, would have been taken to the fair had it been held at the appointed time, were disposed of by other means. Against this we have the fact that the fixture in point of attendance and sales was smaller than a normal monthly fair.

The truth is that cumulative causes contributed to its partial failure. Of these the postponement was only incidental. Only 159 wagon loads of stock left Galway during the two days against 259 at the annual fair last year and 360 the previous year.

Whilst the Midland Great Western Railway Company did all that could have been expected in the circumstances to assist in making the fair a success, the Great Southern did practically nothing at all. Six wagons were placed at the disposal of purchasers by the latter company on the Limerick-Sligo branch.

This is illustrated by the fact that most of those who attended Galway fair arrived on the evening before; few ventured to make the journey on the actual morning of the fair. Again, buyers report that owing to the difficulties of transport, and the recent unnecessary foot and mouth scare, they cannot tranship cattle to anything like the same extent as formerly, and owning to the prolonged drought, there is a shortage of grass for grazing in the rich midland counties where extensive buyers keep their stock from one fair to the other.

Apart from these causes, another much more interesting explanation is given. It is suggested is that the country farmer has not yet realised that there is a considerable drop in prices, and has not adapted himself to the new conditions.

This fall, it is clamed, is likely to be retrogressive under present conditions. The cost of living is falling, and must fall still further in order to restore “the economic balance”. Yet farmers prefer to hold back their stock in expectation, apparently, that something like old prices will be restored, rather than part with them. This, a cattle-buying expert informs us, is bad policy.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

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High fashion at the Athenry Show on September 2, 1972.

1921

Careless farmers

The unfavourable spring and summer of 19230 were not altogether accountable for the partial failure of last season’s potato crop. Planting was deferred until three or four weeks after the usual time, and the spraying of the crop was very carelessly carried out.

Not more than half the usual quantities of spraying materials were sold last year in County Galway. The wagon loads of potatoes which County Galway consumers were obliged to get from other parts of Ireland to go to prove the care and attention taken from growers in other counties.

To meet the increased cost of labour and manures farmers must grow heavier crops, and avoid risks as far as possible. To do so, spraying must be carried out efficiently.

County Galway, with 24,000 Irish acres of potatoes, is the second county in Ireland in respect of area. The total yield in 1920 was about 100,000 tons below that of an average year, which was a serious loss to the farmers and a hardship on the townspeople.

We hope that the lesson of 1920 will not be forgotten, and that farmers will this year spray in time and thoroughly.

One of the farmer’s chief difficulties is keeping of his crops free from weeds. Unfortunately in this important matter some of our farmers are rather careless. They do not realises – probably through lack of education in the matter – that where a crop is allowed to get weedy, the material resources of the land are being doubly taxed, and the crop which it is intended to grow cannot be a viable, much less a financial success.

The farmer has no power over some of the circumstances which determine the success or failure of a crop, and it is, therefore, a short-sighted policy for him not to use every means in his power to check weeds over which he has complete control.

Our attention has been directed to this matter by the number of cornfields in some districts, which are covered with the weed well-known to farmers as “Baráiste”.

We cannot estimate the extent of the damage caused year after year to our corn crops, but it must be very considerable. The yield of gran is greatly reduced, and the quality seriously impaired.

Modern science has given us a simple, effective, remedy involving little labour. This remedy has been used successfully for some years past by the best of our farmers, but we deeply regret the lack of enthusiasm displayed by many of our tillers in connection with the destruction of this objectionable weed.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

 

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

Published

on

Galway Sheep Breeders 49th Annual Show at Athenry Mart on September 21, 1972.

1921

Village halls

Young men and women of the present day expect and obtain more time for recreation than their parents. The monotony of young lives in the country districts leads to a desire to leave comfortable homes for the towns, or to emigrate.

In this work of reconstruction, which we hope will not long be delayed every means by which the young people can be induced to remain on the land must be considered.

Village halls can be made to play an important part in this respect by providing facilities for recreation and enabling those with progressive tendencies to continue with their reading and education after leaving the national schools.

To encourage a taste for reading and the acquirement of useful knowledge, every hall should be provided with a small library containing a selection of suitable books. The erection and equipment of such halls should not be left to voluntary effort, but should be looked upon as a national duty for which public money ought to be provided, and for which the country would be repaid in an enlightened, industrious and efficient rural population.

Custom House attacked

A large force of armed men raided the Custom House, Dublin, at one point on Wednesday, held up the staff and set fire to the building, which was completely destroyed. Yesterday morning the flames could be seen issuing from the surrounds.

The many Government departments in the building included the offices of the Local Government Board, Customs and Excise, Inland Revenue, the Old Age Pensions, and their valuable documents have been reduced to ashes.

From the housetops and the streets of Dublin on Wednesday afternoon, thousands witnessed the aftermath of one of the most serious assaults made by the I.R.A. upon the institutions of the Crown – the burning of the famous Custom House.

Following the burning, nearly a score were killed or wounded in a battle between the I.R.A. and R.I.C. Auxiliaries of the F and Q Companies.

The building was so badly devastated that to-day only the walls and a portion of the Local Government Board Office are still standing.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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