O’Donovan Rossa – De Valera in America – U2 Play Croke Park

June 29: TODAY in Irish History:

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Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa

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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1915: O’Donovan Rossa

Death of Fenian leader and nationalist Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa (b 1831). He won election to the House of Commons for Tipperary in 1869, even though he was serving a life sentence in England for treason for plotting a Fenian rebellion. Released from jail on the understanding he would not return to Ireland, he travelled to the United States with a number of other Fenians who became known as The Cuba Five. He continued to plot activity against England even while in the United States.

O’Donovan Rossa is best remembered in Ireland as a result of Patrick Pearse’s oration at his graveside where the future leader of the 1916 Rising stated: “They think that they have pacified Ireland. They think that they have purchased half of us and intimidated the other half. They think that they have foreseen everything, think that they have provided against everything; but, the fools, the fools, the fools! — They have left us our Fenian dead, and while Ireland holds these graves, Ireland unfree shall never be at peace.”

Fuller version of speech here

See O’Donovan Rossa funeral on YouTube.

Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa 1831-1915




1919: De Valera in America

Eamonn De Valera makes his first major presentation in the United States at Boston’s Fenway Park to a huge audience. De Valera spent many months in the United States during the War of Independence generating funds for the cause. The official Fianna Fail site states he raised over $5 million.

Huge crowd to see De Valera, Fenway Park Boston

De Valera’s grandson Éamon Ó Cuív, when visiting Boston as Irish Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs in 2011 said “(De Valera) came (to Boston) in 1919 as President of the Republic and, incidentally at that time – a fact that is often forgotten – he was a TD for East Mayo, elected in 1918. When he came here at that time he was looking for recognition of Irish independence….. Sixty-thousand people came to listen to de Valera in Fenway Park and I am sure the ancestors of many people here in this hall tonight were at that occasion.”

Much mystery surrounds De Valera’s entry to America. Month’s previously he had escaped from Lincoln Jail in an episode that even to this day continues to have an element of intrigue and mystery to it.




1985: U2 Play Croke Park

U2 play Croke Park Dublin for the first time as part of their Unforgettable Fire tour. Support bands included REM!

Below is a page from For the Love of Being Irish – An A-Z of Ireland.

BUY Author signed copies for For the Love of Being Irish HERE.






WATCH: A Short History of Ireland

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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