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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

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Dated 1627, the limestonefaced Browne Doorway was once the entrance to the Abbeygate Street townhouse of one of the Galway Tribes. As the original building fell into ruin, the front panel of the stone building was rescued in 1904 by the Galway Archaeological and Historical Society, who bought it for about £30 and had it rebuilt to adorn the entrance to Eyre Square, which was surrounded by railings at the time. Sadly, it is no longer the attractive sight evident in the old photo from the 1960s, following measures taken after erosion and a crack on the arch began to take its toll, including an unattractive plastic sheeting preventing risk to the public.

1919

Agricultural prowess

Some interesting particulars concerning the working schemes of agricultural and technical instruction and of the schemes for agricultural development are given in the recently published eighteenth annual report of the Department.

In the case of agriculture the period under review is the agricultural year 1st October, 1917, to 30th Sept., 1918; in the case of technical instruction, the academic year 1st August, 1917 – 31st July, 2018. The report extends to 250 pages, and deals exhaustively with all the Department’s activities.

In view of the interest at present being taken in agricultural education in Great Britain, the United States, Canada, France and other countries, this matter must have the place of honour – as it has in the report.

Having mentioned these countries it might here be remarked that testimony is paid to the plan underlying agricultural instruction in Ireland, and to the manner in which Instructors are trained, by its adoption now for Great Britain.

A Bill for the reorganisation of agricultural education in France adopted last year by the French Senate was similarly modelled.

American Commissions also, which have visited the Continent, recommended their States to copy some of the features of the Irish system.

The Canadian Royal Commission on Industrial Training and Technical Education reported as follows: “Training of Experts and Leaders. Frequent reference has been made to the policy and methods followed in Ireland. The Irish Department had the advantage of being created after a thorough and intimate study of the systems of the leading European countries. It was organised in such a way as to enable it to give effect to the best that has been learned from these countries.”

Too good to be true?

Mr. John Canning presided at the last meeting of the Portumna Board of Guardians. Present: Messrs. John Morrissey, J.P.; P. Coghlan, John Mullin, M. Brien, P. Nevin, P. Hardiman, J. Taylor, MI. Malone.

The Clerk (Mr. Hynes) stated to the board he was informed that they were about to get a motor ambulance free. The cost of it was about £600, but it would not cost the union one penny.

Mr. Hardiman: We will hardly get it for nothing. I have no doubts.

Master: There can be no doubts about it. We are getting an up-to-date motor ambulance free.

Chairman: We will have to keep it in repair. That is all.

Mr. Brien: Where is it coming from?

Clerk: The Red Cross Society.

Mr. Hardiman: If we have to pay anything I would go against it.

Mr. Malone: How does it come we are getting it?

Master: They have a number on hands and think it right to give them to the poor. – On the motion of the Chairman, seconded by Mr. Hardiman, it was unanimously decided to accept the gift.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

Stephen Corrigan

Published

on

Pupils of the Mercy Convent Secondary School in Galway City at the opening of a £150,000 new residential wing attached to the school.

1920

Commotion at meeting

Wild scenes of commotion marked the annual meeting of the County Galway National Teachers’ Association which was held in the Town Hall, Galway, on Saturday.

The noise began when Mr. P. O’Cleary, Kilcolgan, said the members of the C.E.C. were “exactly like Judas who betrayed Our Lord,” in reference to their action on the Education Bill. There were loud cries of “Withdraw,” and amid much confusion, Mr. O’Cleary would not be allowed to continue his address which was mainly directed towards a criticism of the opening speech of the Chairman (Mr. M. Curley) who quoted the words of the Bishop of Raphoe describing the C.E.C. as “gentlemen as respectable as are to be found in Ireland.”

Mr. O’Cleary asked leave to be allowed to explain his remark but his was refused, and Mr. Power proposed and Mr. J. Heffernan seconded that he be expelled from the Association. An amendment by Mr. Parker, seconded by Mr. McClew, that Mr. O’Cleary be asked to withdraw from the meeting was passed.

Hospital in peril

On the financial year ending March 31, there will be a balance against the Galway County Hospital Committee of £4,000. The institution of which the sick poor of the county and the University clinical school depend is in perilous plight.

Saturday’s meeting seriously discussed closing its down, at least for a time. Dr. Clinch, Local Government Board Medical Inspector, asseverated that any expedients that might be employed to restore its solvency would but delay “the evil day.”

Fortunately, there are two men on the committee who combine optimism with unfailing grit and pertinacity. If the County Hospital remains, if the capacity for local administration is not to be brought to utter discredit, the tangle must be unwound: the men who have not grudged time, energy or perseverance in the exasperating task are Mr. Michael McNeil, the Chairman of the Committee, and Mr. Thomas C. McDonogh, one of its most attentive members.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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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.

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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