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May 4, 2011

Bernie Ni Fhlatharta

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Date Published: {J}

1911

Licensing case

At the Petty Sessions, D.I. Heard summoned Mr. Martin Hawkins Shop-street, for a breach of the licensing act on 27th March last. Sergt. Gilmartin deposed he was on duty with Constable Binnerhassett opposite Hawkins’ public house at 11.55pm. He went to the door and could hear people speaking in the shop.

Witness knocked at the front door and after knocking the conversation ceased and the parties left the shop and went to the kitchen. After some time the publican opened the door. He asked Mr Hawkins to account for the presence of James Toner, Shop-street and the publican made no reply.

Solicitor Mr. H.M.A. Murphy said: This is a very tiny shop with a very tiny shop next to it. Mr Toner is a hairdresser doing a respectable business, and on this particular occasion Mr Hawkins, who requires to be shaved as well as anyone else (laughter), left the razor to his next door neighbour to have it sharpened. The man was back with the razor when the police came on the scene. There is no evidence of drink, but Mr. Hawkins will tell you honestly he gave the man no drink.

 

Mr. Hawkins deposed he closed his premises at the proper time and at about 10.30, he gave the razor to Mr Toner to sharpen. He took it away with him and brought it back at 11.30. Witness gave Mr. Toner a drink at 10.30. He gave him no drink when he returned with the razor.

The case was dismissed.

U.I.L. eviction

On Friday fortnight, Mr. Thonas P. Corless, D.C. President Kinvara United Irish League, was evicted out of his holding at Crehaun, Kinvara, in pursuance of an order made by Judge Gibson at the recent Spring Assizes setting aside a deed purchasing the tenants’ interest and goodwill as far back as October 1902. Suffice it to say the eviction was part of a huge conspiracy to ruin a man for openly identifying himself with the National casue.

1936

Bog reclamation

The 400 acres farm of Mr Kenny, Ballinakill, near Eyrecourt, has been the source of an agitation amongst the surrounding farmers, who for the past few years feel that it should be taken over by the Land Commission and divided. The owner of the farm, Mr. Kenny, lives in Tipperary, and the farm is being grazed, there being a couple of hundred cattle and sheep on it.

Guards, under their chief office in Ballinasloe, and from other districts kept a careful watch on the farm last week, as there were fears of a cattle drive. It is believed that the watchfulness of the guards over the farm averted a big cattle drive which was being organised in the district. Guards are still keeping a vigilant eye on the farm. Meetings calling for the division of the land, which was part of the Pollock estate, have been held from time to time.

Painting Tuam Hall

The tender of Mr James Stockwell, Tuam, for £182 10s. for the painting of the Town Hall externally and internally was not accepted, as the Board could not afford the expenditure of this sum. A committee was appointed to consult with Mr. Stockwell as to the cost of the eternal painting only and to see if the work could be done for a sum that the Board’s finances would allow. As Mr. Stockwell’s tender was opened and declared publicly, the Board considered it to be unfair to invite any other contractor to tender.

Little girl killed

A tragic accident occurred in Ballygar on Tuesday evening, as a result of which the six year-old daughter of a Garda stationed in the town, succumbed to injuries. The little girl was accompanied by her younger sister and the daughter of another Garda on their way home from school at about 4pm, when an Austin car was involved in an accident with her.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past

Judy Murphy

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A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.

 

For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Archive News

Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr

Bernie Ni Fhlatharta

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Date Published: 23-Jan-2013

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Athenry fail to take chances as they bow out of Junior Cup

Bernie Ni Fhlatharta

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Date Published: 29-Jan-2013

Athenry FC 1

Kilbarrack United 2

(After extra time)

For the second year in succession Athenry were done in extra time in the FAI Junior Cup as last season’s beaten finalist’s came from behind to snatch an excellent game in Moanbawn on Sunday afternoon.

On a heavy pitch that was only playable following extensive groundwork by club officials all morning, the home side were by far the better side in the opening half, but failed to take advantage of a number of opportunities that came their way.

An Alan O’Donovan penalty gave them a merited advantage just after the restart, but thereafter were on the back foot as Kilbarrack took over, but for all their pressing, the home rearguard were dealing comfortably with their forays.

However they were struck a body blow just six minutes from time, as big striker Keith Kirwan was left all alone at the far post to head the equaliser and from that point on the Dubliners were the better side.

They started off the extra time in the ascendancy and enjoying all the momentum before striking for a good winning goal on 104 minutes. A strong bench allowed them to make some necessary changes and it was not a facility that was available to Athenry manager Gabriel Glavin.

With Gary Forde and Gary Delaney out through suspension following their sending off against OLBC in the previous round, and Seamie Crowe injured, it left their bench rather threadbare with just a number of young squad players available.

Playing with the aid of the slight incline and any wind advantage going, the home side had a Connor Cannon effort on target in the opening minute, while John Meleady was just over with a flick at the other end.

Meleady then tested Andrew Walsh who saved comfortably, before the goalkeeper pulled off a brilliant double save on 14 minutes.

Firstly he went full length to push away a Meleady shot and was then back on his feet to parry David Jackson’s close-range rebound.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

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