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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Enda Cunningham

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This photo from 1979 of Wolfe Tone Bridge, taken from The Claddagh, shows how much the area on the city centre side has changed in the interim. The McDonoghs Fertilizers building on the left has been replaced by the Jury's Inn Hotel, while to the right the big Portmore building now dominates the lanscape close to the Spanish Arch. This was also before the riverside walk was developed.

1914

Land war sensation

What our Connemara correspondent describes as the most sensational and exciting incident in the Connemara land war was reached on Sunday last, when after 11 o’clock Mass, the people marched from Tullycross towards Renvyle for the purpose of holding a public meeting on the Curragh farm, and were met by a large force of police on the public road, who drew their batons and charged the people.

No time was lost at Tullycross immediately Mass was over in starting for Renvyle. The band was got out and led the large concourse of people, comprising men, women and children, and numbering almost 2,000.

The police were fierce. They charged on the crowd using their batons right and left, and, it is alleged, that several women and young girls were struck. Certain it is that many of them were knocked down in the crowd and trampled on in a bad way. The drum was broken in the melee. The people, who were without weapons of any description, would not yield and a desperate hand-to-hand encounter took place.

Several of the people received severe wounds which had to be attended to by a doctor. They were chiefly struck on the face and heads, and their foreheads were split open. For several minutes there was terrible work. The women fought bravely, and struck several policemen with their clenched fists. The crowd continued to fight their way, and at length got away from the police.

The police went on ahead again, and the people got into the grazier’s farm overlooking the Renvyle house, the residence of Mrs. Blake. They cheered wildly, and booed the police. A meeting was then held on the farm.

1939

Travelling ambulance

“I often heard of a travelling shop, but I never before heard of a travelling ambulance,” remarked the secretary (Mr. S. Gallagher) at the monthly meeting of the Galway Hospital and Dispensaries’ Committee on Saturday, when a letter was read from the Belvedere Male Nurse and Ambulance Service, Dublin, stating that, commencing in Jan., 1940, they proposed to run a weekly ambulance service all over the country which they believed would be a great convenience to all Boards of Health.

The secretary added that the inclusive charges would be 2d. per mile per patient, based on the present price of petrol, 2s. per gallon.

Irish at school

“I think the policy adopted for the spread of Irish has been an unwise one. I do not think it is going to achieve the results aimed at, but since it is the policy of the State, it seemed to me that it was my duty as a citizen and headmaster to see that it was carried out. The result is that a number of you here at this table can speak fluently in a language of which I cannot understand a word.” This statement was made by Mr. E.B. Coursey, Headmaster of Galway Grammar School at the first annual reunion dinner of the past students of the school.

Dramatic plane rescue

The rescue of three Irish Army airmen whose twin-engined Avro Anson ‘plane crashed into the sea at Furbough last week, was described to a ‘Connacht Tribune’ representative by the two men who went out to the wreck and brought the airmen ashore in a currach half-filled with water and with the sea washing the rowlocks.

The men are: Pat Connelly (Michael), Barna, and Pat Connelly (James), of Furbough. When the ‘plane crashed into the sea, they said, a huge volume of water was thrown up and scattered like smoke on either side.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

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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.

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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

Crowds gather for the opening of St Cuan's Secondary School in Castlelakeney on September 4, 1971.

1921

Timber lands

Anticipating an industrial and agricultural development of Ireland in the future, one wonders where our supplies of timber are to come from.

No doubt foreign countries could supply the need, but why not develop our own resources, and make ourselves self-supporting in this respect?

In recent years, the country has practically been denuded of ripe woods, and nothing, on a comprehensible scale, has been done to replace them if we except the small shelter belts that may be seen growing successfully in many districts.

Farmers who have furnished their new homes in this way have taken advantage of the existing forestry scheme of the committee of agriculture, but we understand that owing to the lack of funds it is impossible to launch and adequate scheme. We can picture under more favourable conditions large tracks of waste lands being purchased and planted with trees, which in time will provide a very valuable asset to the country.

The subject is so important that in at least three or four counties a special rate has been struck. We were glad to see that the Galway County Council arranged to discuss the matter during the year, but owing to other pressing subjects, no progress could be made for the present. We look with hope to the reappearing of this subject in the near future, and to seeing much of the waste lands of the country planted in our time.

Election as expected

The elections for the Parliament of “Southern” Ireland have turned out exactly as every intelligent observer in Ireland had anticipated.

There have been no contests. Accordingly, the Republicans have swept all before them without opposition, and out of the 128 seats in “Southern” Ireland, they now hold 124 – the four members for Trinity College being the sole objection.

Yet those who make presence to wisdom, knowledge and understanding of Ireland, were making preparations for the “Southern” Parliament. Nothing has indicated the wide gulf which separates them from the actualities of to-day so much as these elections.

This week-end the contests for the six counties that are to govern by the North-Eastern Parliament, will take place, and it is anticipated that the result will come as a surprise to many, for it will be found that the Ulster of Sir Edward Carson’s brand is by no means the homogenous community the world has long been led to believe it is.

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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