Execution of 1916 Leaders. Composer Ernest Ball. Bing Crosby

May 3: TODAY in Irish History:


Today in Irish History: Curated by Conor Cunneen IrishmanSpeaks

Chicago Motivational Humorous Business Speaker, Author and History buff.



1903: Bing Crosby (1977) is born to second generation Irish American mother in Tacoma, Washington.


Bing Crosby

Bing Crosby


See Bing Crosby:  A Pocketful of Dreams


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1916: First of the 1916 rebels are executed after being found guilty of taking part “in an armed rebellion . . . for the purposes of assisting the enemy,” a mis-characterization of their motives. Executed on this day were:

Thomas James Clarke who fought in the GPO. A number of the 1916 leaders were not Irish born. Most notably De Valera (United States) and Clarke who was born the Isle of Wight in 1857.  Clarke’s father served in the British army. While in American, Clarke joined Clann na nGael. IN 1883, he was sentenced to fifteen years of penal servitude for his role in a bombing campaign in London. Clarke was the first signatory of the Proclamation of Independence through deference to his seniority, Clarke was with the group that occupied the G. P. O. He was executed on 3 May 1916.

Thomas MacDonagh. The Tipperary born McDonagh was a teacher and founder of St. Enda’s (Coláiste Éanna )School with Patrick Pearse. A creative mind, his play When the Dawn is Come was produced at the Abbey theatre. He was commander of the Second Battalion of Volunteers that occupied Jacob’s biscuit factory and surrounding houses during the Rising.

Thomas McDonagh 1916

Thomas McDonagh

Patrick Pearse: Dublin born(1879) Pearse graduated from the Royal University in 1901 with a degree in Arts and Law. A strong believer in education he founded two schools, Coláiste Éanna and Coláiste Íde, where teaching was through the Irish language.  Pearse was a founder member of the Irish Volunteers, and the primary author of the Proclamation of Independence. During the Rising, he fought in the GPO and was Commander in Chief of the rebel forces

patrick pearse

Patrick Pearse


READ: Royal Commission on the Rebellion in Ireland 1916


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1927: Ernest Ball (b 1878), composer of the music for  When Irish Eyes are Smiling and Mother Machree dies. Although not Irish, his songs were hugely successful at the time and still bring a tear to many an emotional Irish heart. John McCormack’s recording of Mother Machree reached #1 on the Billboard charts in 1911. He wrote When Irish Eyes are Smiling in 1912 and a recording of the song by Chauncey Olcott reached #1 on Billboard charts the following year.

Ball’s other compositions included A Little Bit of Heaven. For more information See Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Ernest Ball 1878-1927

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For the Love of Being Irish written by Chicago based Corkman Conor Cunneen and illustrated by Mark Anderson which is an A-Z of all things Irish. This is a book that contains History, Horror, Humor, Passion, Pathos and Lyrical Limericks that will have you giving thanks (or wishing you were) For the Love of Being Irish

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This history is written by Irish author, business keynote speaker and award winning humoristIrishmanSpeaks – Conor Cunneen. If you spot any inaccuracies or wish to make a comment, please don’t hesitate to contact us via the comment button.

Visit Conor’s YouTube channel IrishmanSpeaksto Laugh and Learn. Tags: Best Irish Gift, Creative Irish Gift, Unique Irish Gifts, Irish Books, Irish Authors, Today in Irish History

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