Sean Lemass Meets Terence O’Neill – Maureen Dowd at Today in Irish History

January 14: TODAY in Irish History:

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Terence O'Neill and Sean Lemass

Snippets of Irish History by Conor Cunneen IrishmanSpeaks

Conor is a Chicago based Motivational Humorous Business Speaker, Author and History buff.

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1922: Provisional Irish Government

Provisional Government set up by pro-Treaty TDs. Michael Collins is elected Leader of the government. This was essentially an interim government for the period between the ratifying of the Anglo-Irish Treaty and the establishment of the Irish Free State.


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1952: NY Times Columnist Maureen Dowd

maureen dowd irish ancestry

1999 Pulitzer Prize winner, in the commentary category,  Maureen Dowd is born to second generation Irish parents.  Dowd was awarded an Honorary Degree by NUI Galway in 2012.


READ: Maureen Dowd’s Honorary Degree Acceptance Speech


1965: Historic Meeting of Taoiseach and Northern Ireland PM

Terence O'Neill and Sean Lemass

Terence O’Neill and Sean Lemass

The Taoiseach of Ireland (Sean Lemass) and the Prime Minister of Northern Ireland (Terence O’Neill) meet for the first time since the partition of Ireland in 1922. It was a truly historic meeting that began a thaw in relations between the two states. The meeting at Stormont Castle of two distrustful parties was so momentous and prone to disruption that it was not announced prior to the event. The meeting evoked generally positive reaction in the Republic but caused major problems for O’Neill. While moderate unionists supported talks on non-constitutional issues such as co-operation on tourism, the meeting did not sit well with Protestant fundamentalist like Rev. Ian Paisley who saw it as the start of a sell out. O’Neill paid a reciprocal visit to Dublin in February.

Items discussed in general terms during their meeting included Tourism, Education, Health, Industrial Promotion and Transport. A memo of the meeting written by Department of Finance Secretary T.K. Whitaker noted that “It was accepted that these were illustrations only and that all possibilities of practical co-operation in matters of common interest should be explored.”


READ: T.K. Whitaker Memo on Lemass Visit to Northern Ireland


Sean Lemass had a strong republican background. Born in Dublin in 1899, he participated in the 1916 Rising, fighting in the GPO (General Post Office). He was also in the Irish Republican Army during the War of Independence. He was arrested in 1920 and interned for a year. He joined with De Valera on the anti-treaty side and was in the Four Courts as second in command at the start of the Civil War.


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Want to learn more about Ireland? See these images and more in the acclaimed For the Love of Being Irish

Irish gift ideas. Best selling Irish booksRonnie Drew and Luke Kelly - Musical Irish Gifts to the worldJoyce Image in For the Love of Being IrishMichael Collins: Image from For the Love of Being Irish


This history is written by Irish author, business keynote speaker and award winning humorist IrishmanSpeaks – 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 IrishmanSpeaks to Laugh and Learn.

Tags: Best Irish Gift, Creative Irish Gift, Unique Irish Gifts, Irish Books, Irish Authors, Today in Irish History TODAY IN IRISH HISTORY (published by IrishmanSpeaks)

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