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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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William Street in Galway in 1925 when motorised transport was still a relative rarity.

1918

Illegal hurling

At Loughrea Magistrates’, Joseph Connor, Joseph Ford and Tadh Scorry were charged with illegally playing hurley on July 31. Mr. Hogan, solr., who defended, cited Mr. Shortt’s declaration that the police had no right to interfere with games. Mr. Gillooley denied the Chief Secretary’s interpretation of the Order as correct. Hurling, he maintained, could not be played without a permit.

Mr. Hill, R.M., pointed out that Mr Gilooley had put in no evidence that the assembly was political. Mr. Gillooley replied that there were shouts of “Up De Valera”.

Mr. Hogan said the action of the police was audacious in bringing the case – they were more royalist than the King. If the Court interfered with the liberty of these men, the case would be taken to the Supreme Courts.

For the defence, T. Burke and M. Daley swore that Connor had been batoned on the head several times after arrest. Head-Constable Sweeney declared that a stone had been thrown. He did not see it, but heard it fall.

The magistrates, after a long consultation, adjourned their decision to Loughrea Petty Sessions.

Police charge

Sinn Féin demonstrations were held on Lady Day in many parts of the county, and the statement issued by the Executive was read in most cases. The Rev. Father O’Meehan, C.C., Kinvara, President South Galway Sinn Féin Executive, informs the Press that 35 Sinn Féin clubs held meetings in South Galway unmolested.

In Connemara meetings were held at Clifden, Claddaclithu, Ballinakill, Ballinafad, Cashel and Roundstone.

A Cumann na mBan meeting, at which Miss Cashel, B.A., was to speak, was not long in progress when a large contingent of police arrived and charged the crowd. Although some people, it is said, received nasty injuries, the assemblage kept cool.

At a quarter to 10 o’clock on Thursday night, Mr. P. Carroll, Sec. Ballinasloe Sinn Féin, was arrested by Head-Constable Crehan and Constable French. We understand the charge against him is for having used seditious language in the fair green, after a camogie match had been played. Mr. Carroll was taken to Galway, where he was handed over to the military authorities.

Mr. Timothy P. Killeen, D.C., a member of the Ballinasloe District Council and Clonfert Sinn Féin Club, was arrested by Eyrecourt police, and taken to Portumna to be dealt with by the military authorities.

1943

Overcharging tourists

The good reputation of the Galway and Salthill hotels and boarding-houses – second to none in the country for cleanliness, comfort and moderate charges – has been endangered during the present holiday season by the unscrupulous conduct of a few persons who have grossly overcharged visitors for very indifferent accommodation.

A well-known hotel proprietor, commenting upon the complaints of overcharging for accommodation, drinks and car hire, said: “If they keep up this sort of thing in Salthill, they will completely ruin the tourist trade.”

Phone service complaints

Complaints that the telephone service in Galway was very unsatisfactory were made at a meeting of the Chamber of Commerce. The Chairman (Mr. J.D. Whelan) said that several people had complained to him about the long delays in getting through.

He himself had an experience on the first Monday in August, which was a Bank Holiday. He had to wait almost half-an-hour to get through from Galway to Salthill.

Mr. MI O’Flaherty, P.C., said that he recently tried to make a very urgent call from one of the kiosks and when he did not get a reply, he rang up the exchange from a private number.

When he complained that he had been ringing from the kiosk and did not get a reply, the operator said that the telephone there must not be working.

He pointed out that he had been delayed and that a notice should have been put up on the kiosk to the effect that it was not working. To this the operator replied: “That is not my fault.”

Mr. J. Allen said that from what he had heard, the operators were not to blame. The whole trouble was due to the fact that the service was out of date and was not able to cope with the demand on it. Until the whole system was rearranged nothing could be done to improve matters.

Chairman: It is ridiculous paying a high rental if we are not going to get better service than that.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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Mayor of Galway, Cllr Michael Smyth, turning the first sod of the new £86,000 community centre at Shantalla on August 6, 1971

1921

Treatment of women

At the meeting of the Galway Board of Guardians on Wednesday, Mr. Pk. Thornton in the chair, a discussion took place regarding the admission of women with illegitimate children.

Mr. Cooke said that it was one of those questions which the Dáil Éireann was trying to solve. The assistant clerk said that Galway was only a small place in comparison to other places.

A member said that these people were coming in month after month, and it was perfectly scandalous.

Mrs. Young said that the practice should be stopped as in England. The assistant clerk said that they had laws of their own in England in regard to this matter. Mrs. Young said that it was a matter that the guardians should go into.

Clerk: So these women assist in washing and scrubbing, Mr. O’Toole?

Master: Yes, they do.

Mrs. Young: Until you tackle the thing, you can never make much headway. The nuns were terrified by some of them who absolutely refused to work.

Mr. Cooke: They should be cleared out.

Chairman: It is not fair for any able-bodied woman to be in the workhouse at the ratepayers’ expense.

The clerk said that this question was one of the most difficult which had confronted Dáil Éireann, and they were looking the matter up.

Profiteering black spot

Galway is the blackest spot in Ireland for profiteering. It is maintaining its inglorious record in extortion – a record that all but killed the race meeting some years ago and diverted the stream of visitors from the town for nearly a decade.

If this flagrant profiteering continues, it will have the result of reducing the city ultimately to poverty, whilst the few grow rich. The economic balance must be maintained. Elsewhere desperate efforts are being made to maintain it.

Prices must come back. Labour in Galway has done absolutely nothing to bring them back, because Labour in Galway appears to be less intelligently led than elsewhere. Yet unemployment is rife amongst us, poverty is already knocking consistently at the door of not a few, wages are falling and must fall.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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President Eamon de Valera speaking at the opening of Coláiste Lurgan, Knock, Indreabhán, on August 4, 1968.

1921

Life in internment

A Gort man at Ballykinlar sends to the West and interesting account of the conditions in the internment camp, where so many men from our country are at present held prisoner without charge every having been preferred against them, without trial or conviction.

There are some disturbing features in his report, the cause of which might well be removed at this period when the Truce is being so well observed, when peace is in the air. For instance, he begins by the complaint that whilst the English papers are freely delivered, there is difficulty in getting their own papers.

“The camp,” he goes on, “is an improvement on the Earl’s Island death trap or the Town Hall poison den. There is a greater sense of security here than in either of those places. The food is inadequate, and doubtful of quality, as you may have seen by the Press. The men here have to put up a great fight against the ennui, which anyone acquainted with internment has experienced. Physical development classes and outdoor sports, football, handball and hurling, have kept their devotees fit and energetic, but the vitality is slowly and surely ebbing away.

“Exercises are being less violently participated in, brisk walks are being less frequently indulged in, and a general apathy and listlessness, hardly observable as yet, is, nevertheless, gradually setting in.

“The education board, which owes a lot to Mr. O’Connell, Duniry, to whom all students are deeply indebted, has been instrumental in endowing many of the boys with a liberal increase to their attainments (a description of the work would require a great deal of space), and has provided a much-needed antidote to the deterioration of the mind, which is so invariably associated with internment. The study of Gaelic has pride of place in the curriculum, and many students have made great headway. It is not unusual to find half-a-dozen in a hut almost at any hour carrying on a laboured conversation in Irish or debating some of the finer points in grammar. I believe one f the boys (none of them had a word of Irish coming in) passed for a fáinne at the recent examination.

“Hobbies in arts and crafts have an enormous sway, and a surprising amount of latent talent has been discovered and developed. Silver rings, chased, engraved and inset, have been made from silver coins, that, placed beside the finished works at Faller’s or Dillon’s, would not cause the designs to blush! Bones, more plentiful than meat at the cookhouse, have been manufactured into brooches of beautiful and distinctive design, which, I am sure, will be seen gracing the fair necks of favoured colleens later on.”

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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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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Some of the participants in the Kinvara Fancy Dress on June 11, 1967.

1921

Outdated laws

Ireland obtained her workhouses from the famine. They were erected to ameliorate a condition of things brought about by an alien government – a condition which historians unite in declaring could have been avoided.

On the 25th March, 1846, Tuam, Castlerea, Cahirciveen, and Clifden workhouses were opened, and a rate was struck on the Clifden union. The Tuam workhouse was contracted for July, 1840, at a cost of £7,600 for building and completion and £1,400 for fittings and contingencies.

It was made to accommodate 800 persons but in 1851 it housed no fewer than 2,881 paupers. Sheds had to be extemporised to afford a roof to those who had been stricken by the famine, and scenes of horror were enacted there during the period of the Black Death.

The workhouses also are a landmark of the fact that in these famine years Ireland’s population was reduced practically by half, and that so impoverished had the country become that it was unable any longer to maintain even the 4½ millions left without workhouses.

At present, on the eve of happier times, an effort is being made to reduce public expenditure and divert public monies into more profitable channels by amalgamating existing unions, and thus reducing their number.

Some have claimed that this is a question upon which the ratepayers ought to have been consulted and that in any drastic scheme of reform they should have a voice. None will dispute however that reform is absolutely necessary, and the sooner it comes the better.

The poor, no doubt, we shall always have with us, but when employment is revived throughout Ireland, and wages and the cost of living are reduced, we feel convinced that pauperism in this country will largely disappear and that public monies can thenceforth be utilised much more profitably than in maintaining an army of officials.

The neighbouring county of Mayo has drawn up an elaborate scheme of union amalgamation which the secretary of the county council has courteously forwarded to us. We hope to deal with this scheme fuller in our next issue.

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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