Classifieds Advertise Archive Subscriptions Family Announcements Photos Digital Editions/Apps
Connect with us

Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Enda Cunningham

Published

on

Dr Colohan Road in Salthill with the Beach Hotel on right in July 1977.

1916

Battle of Clarenbridge

Owing to the isolation of parts of the country quite closely connected at normal times, the people of Galway did not know that one of the fiercest engagements of the Rising, so far as the county is concerned, took place around the police barracks of Clarenbridge.

The plan of the insurgents appears to have been to attack Oranmore and Clarenbridge police barracks simultaneously and for the purpose of ensuring the success of this venture, they endeavoured to stop traffic by erecting barricades between Clarenbridge and Kilcolgan where there is another barracks garrisoned by over half-a-score of men, and between Clarenbridge and Oranmore.

Simultaneously, a somewhat abortive attempt was made to blow up the bridge near Oranmore on the Galway road, the rails were torn up at Derrydonnell, and the Oranmore signal cabin put out of commission.

Dividing themselves into two forces, the smaller surrounded the little garrison of four men at Oranmore, and whilst this, to quote Sergeant Healy’s description, was being “intermittently shot at by about 30 insurgents”, the equally small garrison at Clarenbridge were fighting for their lives.

Early on the fateful morning of Tuesday, April 25, they were surrounded by a hostile force numbering, it is alleged, over 200. A violent fusillade followed, and the constabulary men “entrenched” themselves as well as they could and replied with vigour.

Glass was smashed and bullets ricocheted about their heads. The insurgents sent a local clergyman to the police, calling upon them to surrender.

“No surrender!” was the reply. The “engagement” continued and it is even suggested that the insurgents hurled bombs and explosives against the barracks.

Later, the insurgents gave the sergeant fifteen minutes in which to surrender.

“You may cut the fifteen minutes,” was the reply. The siege went on, until reinforcements arrived from Kilcolgan, Oranmore was relieved, and the besiegers were compelled to fall in with the general retirement upon the camp at the Department’s Farm at Athenry.

1941

Turf export evil

“According to the official returns, 493,000 tons of turf were cut in County Galway in 1989 and it is expected that the quantity will be at least doubled this year,” said Mr C.I. O’Flynn, County Secretary, at a meeting of Galway County Council.

Replying to comments about the huge quantity of turf that was being sent out from Galway at very high prices to other counties, including Dublin, the County Secretary said that this was an evil which might produce some good.

It might stimulate the production of turf and is production took place on a large scale, prices would come down, and if they did not come down, the Government might step in and prohibit the carriage of turf for some areas.

Work-shy youths

Instances have been brought to my notice of late of young able-bodied men, residing in areas where the dole is paid all the year round, who will not accept employment unless it is of a character entirely to their liking. What a commentary on modern trends!

I was told of one town where an appeal was made for men to help at turf spreading and only a few elderly men turned up at the appointed centre. The young men scoffed at it.

A good many people are coming to believe that no able-bodied man without dependants should be paid the dole in the interval between now and October while there is useful public work which he could and should perform and for which he would receive reasonable remuneration.

Fuel shortage

The Irish Sea Fisheries’ Association at their first meeting in Galway heard of the plight      of owners and crew of motor fishing boards  in Galway City, Aran, and at other points along the coast of County Galway, who are unable to obtain fuel oil for the engines of their craft.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Avatar

Published

on

Photographed at the Galway Races in 1961 were Miss Anne Gillane, Mrs. Seán Corrigan, Miss Gertrude Gilligan and Miss Emily Gilligan, all from Gort.

1920

Mad motorists

That traffic in Galway is ill-regulated and conducted without the smallest regard to the rules of the road or the interests or safety of those who use them is an assertion that is generally accepted even by those who are the worst offenders.

Yet a little attention to very simple and well-understood rules would enormously add to our comfort and convenience, especially on market days.

Recently there has been a considerable influx of country motors. Youthful drivers have shown almost criminal disregard for the traffic conditions of the City streets, which render driving at a speed of exceeding ten or twelve miles an hour, a dangerous a reckless proceeding.

Moreover, the lumbering military motor lorries have been, and are being, driven with an indifference that is no less culpable. We have heard complaints, even from those who are friendly to the soldiers, that drivers of these lorries never “give the road” to a passing vehicle.

Surely the Irish people have a right to use their own roads without being run down by mad motorists, whether they be reckless country youths who have never been taught the elementary principles of motor-driving, or ill-mannered and ill-disciplined soldiers?

Any clumsy fool can drive a car furiously on the middle of the road: trained drivers and gentlemen show that consideration for their own car and for other people which is the true hallmark of nobility of character.

City centre explosion

At ten minutes to three on Saturday morning the citizens of Galway were startled by a loud, dull explosion, which shattered the plate-glass window facing Shop-st. in the premises of Mr. Patrick J. O’Connor, who conducts popular tearooms, newsagency and fancy business in Mainguard-st., did some damage in the shop, and killed a pet fox terrier that was sleeping on the counter.

In view of recent happenings in the West and the attitude of intoxicated soldiers the previous night, no one dared to venture abroad, but Mr. Jordan who controls a boot shop next door, and whose sister is married to Mr. O’Connor, rushed to his neighbour’s aid, and found everything in the premises in a state of confusion, and the startled inhabitants rushing down the stairs in their night attire.

The little watch-dog lay dead upon the counter with a jagged wound on his side.

Mr. O’Connor is a young businessman who is exceedingly popular in the City. In politics, he is a Sinn Féiner; but it is inconceivable that any party or section of the community could have a grudge against him of a nature that would lead to Saturday morning’s outrage.

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.

Continue Reading

Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

Published

on

The cocktail bar at Ballybrit draws the crowd at the Galway Races 1965.

1920

Terror in Tuam

As a police van was proceeding to Dunmore from Galway Assizes on Monday evening, with four armed constables, it was ambushed at Gallagh, three miles beyond Tuam, and two of the occupants – Constables Burke and Carey – were shot dead.

All was peaceable until five o’clock on Tuesday morning, when the sleeping inhabitants of the town were startled by volleys of musketry fire.

At first only a few shots were fired; then the fusillade became terrific, and it was accompanied by explosions, as if bombs and hand grenades were being hurled. It soon became evident that the firing was general throughout the town.

Children and women screamed, and all sought shelter in the rear of their premises, where they lay flat on the ground.

Subsequently, cheers broke out, and the Town Hall was found to be in flames. Apparently the cheering was the signal for the congregation. Soon after the outbreak the military who are stationed in Tuam came upon the scene, but were immediately afterwards withdrawn.

Mr. Quinn, a well-known solicitor, who witnessed the thrilling scene from the midst of two houses which were in flames, declared on Tuesday morning that he distinctly heard the officer calling off his men, and shouting “this is not our job,” the inference being that the military did not wish to be associated with the outbreak.

About six o’clock the orgy of outrage ceased, and the townsmen who ventured abroad found many houses in flames.

No harm in variety

Perhaps the most remarkable thing about the Barna (Galway) Feis which was held on last Sunday, was the large numbers who attended it. Rarely has such a fine gathering been seen at a similar function in a comparatively small village like Barna.

The competitions, too, were successful, but it would have been no harm if a little more variety had been introduced. The school children were very good, but one felt that something was wanting to make the whole thing more interesting; there was a lack of colour and variety in a programme that was followed attentively.

Singing and dancing constituted the entire programme. There were songs by school-children, by young people, and by adults, and there was dancing by the school-children. The dancing did not come up to the mark, and no first or second prize was awarded.

Some of the singing reached a fairly high standard, and “voice” could be detected.

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.

 

 

Continue Reading

Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

Published

on

Jack Charlton receives some help from Galway Fisheries Manager Paddy Gargan while fishing for salmon on the Weir in the city on May 26, 1990. A report in the Connacht Sentinel details how Big Jack was watched by a group of around 30 people who applauded when he nabbed the tiny fish, causing him to smile and shout to the onlookers, "that's only the bait". Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy

1920

Lighting up Portumna

Mr. Joseph P. Martin presided at the district meeting of the Portumna Rural District Council on Saturday. Also present: Messrs. J. D. O’Kelly, M. J. Lyons, John Banfield, Patrick Burke, John Daly, Patk. Martin, Thomas Abberton, Con. Tully, Patrick Sellars, Jerome Maloney.

A deputation from the Electric Light Company, consisting of Mr. A. E. Moeran, Dr. Kelly, Mr. J. J. Kearns, solr., and Mr. M C. Stronge, came before the council in regard to the striking of a rate on a certain area in the district for the public lighting of the town.

Mr. Hynes (Clerk) read the letter from the Local Government Board which stated the procedure as follows: To undertake the lighting the council should be invested with the powers of an urban authority. Before application for powers is made, the council should publish notices in the local Press and put up posters setting forth the application, giving particulars of the proposed area of charge, estimated cost of providing and maintaining lamps, estimated cost of providing and maintaining lamps, estimated annual poundage rate on the affected area.

The notices should specify the area of change as delineated on a map which can be seen at the clerk’s office, and any objection should be lodged with the clerk within a specified period. A map and tracing showing the position of the lamps and the proposed area should be indicated.

Ambushed at noon

While on patrol duty at Caltra, Ballinasloe, at noon on Wednesday, Constable Howley and Constable Donnelly were ambushed and seriously wounded by a party armed with shotguns.

Constable Howley received terrible injuries in the head and body, and his recovery is not expected.

County Inspector Taylour, and a party of military, accompanied by a Red Cross ambulance, left Ballinasloe in the afternoon and conveyed the wounded men to Ballinasloe infirmary. Constable Donnelly was wounded in the side and legs.

On Sunday some gunshots were fired from a wood at two constables at the cross roads, Prospect, Oranmore.

On Friday while Constables McCormack and McGovern, Loughrea, were serving jurors’ summonses for the assizes in the Peterswell District they were held up twice by masked and armed men who deprived them of their revolvers and ammunition.

Constable McGovern’s cape was also taken, but the money found on the police was returned. In the first raid the attackers numbered about twelve, and in the second it is stated that about eight took place.

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.

 

 

Continue Reading

Local Ads

Advertisement

Weather

Weather Icon
Advertisement

Facebook

Advertisement

Trending