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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

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Greenfields hockey team from Galway who were defeated by Ling Physical Education College, Dublin, in the final of the Cross Cup competition in April 1971. Front (from left): Joyce O'Beirne, Patricia Hosty, Adrienne Byrne, June Smith, Norita Owens and Martina O'Dea. Standing: Lucy Warner, Emer Maloney, Marjorie Ryan, Olga Scully, Sheelagh Conneely and Aoife Morris.

1920

Counting in the dark

A correspondent from Ballinasloe district sends us a letter which we deem of sufficient importance to be dealt with editorially.

He says that the report in our last issue that a candidate for election and the representatives of the Press were denied admission to the counting of the votes is a serious matter that should not be lost sight of.

Proportional Representation was new and intricate machine. The purposes for which it was imposed on Ireland were suspect by a great mass of the people. However admirable the system might be in itself, its utility had to be proved, and was in the process of proof at the municipal elections.

In the circumstances, it was of the very utmost importance that everything should be done “openly and above board,” and that, as far as was permissible, the public should be shown the working of the machinery.

We do not, however, go to the length of concurring with our correspondent’s assertions that “P.R. is so intricate that the voting papers could easily be changed form one person to another, if the candidates or their agents had not free access to examine all the papers after each count.”

Of course, anything is possible, but the extreme possibility our correspondent postulates is altogether unlikely – even given the sinister intentions on the part of the Returning Officer and his staff.

Derelict harbour

The ancient borough of Galway has no representative in the Imperial Parliament, and the servants of the “Mother of Parliaments” have wreaked their own sweet will upon Galway Harbour. Concurrently with the announcement that Mr. Robert Worthington has withdrawn the Galway (Barna) Piers and Harbours Bill comes the news that our docks are derelict.

Merchandise-laden argosies from Spain once sailed proudly into this port, which was accounted the third in Europe. Unhappily, under alien rule hundreds and thousands of Irishmen and women also sailed west from Galway, and the population of the old capital dwindled to a mere shadow of what it was. Now the docks are closed. If something does not “turn up” within a month, the dock gates will be thrown open that the tides may ebb and flow as they will.

It is one more sad evidence of faded greatness, one more tragedy of the curse of alien rule. Surely, the citizens will bestir themselves without a moment’s delay.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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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.

 

Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

Published

on

A group pictured at the first dinner dance at Calvary Hospital (now the Bon Secours) in Renmore in January 1967.

1920

Compensation claims

The “Freeman” of Monday had a biting comment on the Act passed last year enabling the Government servants in Ireland who receive injuries in the carrying out of their duties, or the dependants of those who suffer death to acquire liberal compensation of the ratepayers.

It says: “On Friday last a police sergeant was awarded by the Recorder of Galway £1,200 compensation for the loss of an eye, the damage being incurred whilst endeavouring to arrest a lunatic who, says the terse report, ‘held the police at bay with a shotgun and ultimately perished in the flames of his own cottage.’

Presumably the sergeant was merely performing the duty for which he has been paid since he joined the Force of preserving the law, when he endeavoured to secure the safe custody of the unfortunate madman. It is fairly safe to assume that he knew since before he entered the Depot that such duty was expected of him in return for his stipend and that its efficient discharge involved the risk of injury.

Yet no sooner does the risk materialise than the same and unoffending ratepayers of a whole district are ordered to pay the damage wrought by a lunatic, as if his aberration of intellect and lapse from normal behaviour could be imputed to them as a crime! Could anything be more preposterous?

Why, the wretched man who perished in the flames of his burning cabin cannot be deemed a greater lunatic than the legislator or the administrator who would argue such a freak law is equitable.

Closure rumours

A persistent rumour gained circulation in Galway this week that the County Hospital will be closed. This, should it take place, would be due to the financial straits in which the Committee of Management find themselves. From inquiries made, no confirmation of the report can be obtained, but if money is not forthcoming there is no doubt that the institution cannot carry on.

A special meeting of the Committee will be held on Saturday, 14th inst., to consider the situation. A motion is on the agenda to request the Unions to pay the first half of the 1920 assessment immediately, and to ask the County Council to forward this amount to the Unions for payment.

There is a sum of £2,550 due to contractors, and the Bank, which has already given an overdraft of £1,000, will not advance any more money.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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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

Crowds pack into Eyre Square during a rally held by Fianna Fáil leader Jack Lynch ahead of the 1977 General Election. Mr Lynch told a huge audience that "people were ready and willing for a change of government".

1920

Evils of women’s dress

On Sunday last a branch of the League of St. Brigid was inaugurated in Tuam, and large numbers of young ladies from town and country became members.

At High Mass on Sunday his Grace Most Rev. Dr. Gilmartin, in inaugurating the League of St. Brigid, spoke as follows: You may have noticed in the Press that it is proposed to form in Ireland a League of St. Brigid to protest against the inroads of foreign objectionable fashions.

So far had things gone that a few months ago the Pope himself felt bound to warn the Catholic women of the world against extravagance. To some it may seem that there is no need of such a League in Ireland, but we all know how quickly fashions travel, and it is better and easier to keep out an evil than to eject it when in possession.

I am glad, indeed, to believe that there is no need for such a League in Tuam, but that is just the reason why the ladies of Tuam will, I am sure, have no objection to give their support to a movement which is bound to check what might in the course of time become such a disgrace as the pope has condemned.

Mail car robbery

At three o’clock on Tuesday morning, as the mail car was on its way to Mount Bellew, County Galway, it was held up by six masked men about two miles out of the town.

A sum of £20, which was being sent to Mount Bellew, was taken together with registered letters and a gold watch. The driver was ten allowed to proceed, but warned not to look around. The raiders had bicycles.

1945

Fined for dancing

Before Justice W. P. Cahill at Gort Court, Michael Keane, Gardenblake, Peterswell, who was charged with using his house on January 5th for public dancing without having been granted a dance licence, was fined £10 with 5s. expenses.

Alfred Stone, Skehanagh, and Patrick Fahy, Dunally, gave evidence.

Sergeant Francis McCague, Peterswell, said that on January 5th he heard the noise of dancing and concealed himself near Keane’s house from 10 p.m. to midnight. He saw a number of people enter the house, but he could not see if they were charged with anything.

At midnight, accompanied by Garda Dempsey, he entered the house and found sixteen or seventeen people dancing in the kitchen.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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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

A fire fighter battles the blaze at McDonogh's and Corbett's Stores on Merchant's Road in August, 1971. The fire casued £2 million worth of damage.

1919

Tribute to peace

It is a tribute to the peace, good order and spirit of chivalry that prevails in West of Ireland towns that the local elections passed off without any untoward incident, without any unseemly displays, and without any hitch.

Indeed, courtesy and helpfulness were displayed on all sides, without reference to party divisions. All were citizens of the same city, and all were given an equal chance of putting their claims for election before the voters.

Where this rule was transgressed, as it was in one instance before polling-day, the transgressor was taught a sharp lesson by the electors, who brought about the defeat of no fewer than thirteen of the candidates whom he sought to have elected by methods of mendacity.

That these men did not climb to power over the blighted reputations of their fellows is not due to any lack of zeal on the part of Mr. Nicholls; rather it is due to over-zeal, and the laudable desire of the police to put a lid on the poison gas cylinders that have been nursed in our midst to so little effect.

Police officer shot

Constable Finnegan, a native of Dunmore, was fired at and wounded at 10.30 on Tuesday night in the town of Thurles, Co. Tipperary, where he had been stationed for two years. Two of the bullets lodged in his right arm and one in his abdomen.

He lies in a critical condition in Steeven’s Hospital, Dublin, whither he was removed with all haste. An operation was performed, transfusion of blood, which was procured from another constable, being necessary.

Constable Finnegan had ten years’ services, and is a married man with two children. He was going towards his own house when fired at.

Several residents heard the shots, but thought they were the sounds of slap-bangs. Constable Finnegan staggered to his door crying to his wife, “Oh, Mary, I’m shot.” Her screams could then be heard, and some neighbours rushed in and placed the husband in a lying position.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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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