May 30: TODAY in Irish History:
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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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1798: Rebel Success in Wexford
Rebellion continues with some success for Irish forces in Wexford. At Three Rocks, just outside Wexford town, 70 English militia are killed in a carefully planned ambush by Irish forces. In response to this and other action, English troops abandon Wexford town. At this stage, almost all of Wexford is in the hands of Irish forces.
A letter written at this time to a Mr. Addington by Dr. Butson, Dean of Waterford, describes in some detail the travails of the Loyalist population
” Waterford, May 3ist.
” Nothing can exceed the melancholy aspect of this place. The insurgents in our neighbouring county of Wexford are so numerous as to have taken possession of and destroyed the town of Enniscorthy not a house remaining ; men, women, and children murdered and burnt, particularly the clergy. A gentleman has informed me that he saw the bodies of Mr. Hayden, a clergyman past eighty years of age, and of Mr. Nun, a very respectable rector, lying unburied in the street, the day after their entrance, with 400 more dead bodies. Some detachments sent from hence have been defeated : from one under the command of General Faucett, 1 they took two fieldpieces. The rebels amount to 15 or 16,000 ; march in a disciplined manner, have a squadron of cavalry, and fire their cannon with precision. These ircumstances I give on the authority of officers who have been beaten back. Every tide brings us in boats full of wounded and fugitives. Yesterday the rebels were in possession of Wexford ; thus a port is open to the French, but it is a very bad harbour. At New Ross, ten miles from hence, about 1000 troops and some artillery are got together : the insurgents are around Wexford, about twenty-eight miles from thence. As yet, from the spirit of the principal inhabitants and clergy uniting to guard it, this city has not risen.”
Source. H. F. B. Wheeler & A. M. Broadley, The War in Wexford: an account of the rebellion in the south of Ireland in 1798, told from original documents (London 1910) pp. 83-4.
1906: Michael Davitt – Irish League Founder
Death of Michael Davitt (b.1846 in County Mayo). Davitt founded the Irish Land League in 1879, a non-violent action group designed to help Irish tenant farmers who effectively had no rights in 19th century Ireland.
The objectives of the Land League were “to bring out a reduction of rack-rents; second, to facilitate the obtaining of the ownership of the soil by the occupiers. That the object of the League can be best attained by promoting organisation among the tenant-farmers; by defending those who may be threatened with eviction for refusing to pay unjust rents; by facilitating the working of the Bright clauses of the Irish Land Act during the winter; and by obtaining such reforms in the laws relating to land as will enable every tenant to become owner of his holding by paying a fair rent for a limited number of years.”
1951:De Valera Returns to Power
Irish general election sees Fianna Fail return to power under leadership of Eamonn De Valera.During this governing period of 1951-1954, De Valera would have his only meeting with Winston Churchill on September 16 1953.
2002:John B. Keane RIP
Death of one of Ireland’s finest (and funniest) playwrights John B. Keane. His many works include: Many Young Men of Twenty, Sive, The Year of the Hiker, The Field and Big Maggie.
John B. Keane on Matchmaking. Humorous and Serious
Want to learn more about Ireland? See these images and more in the acclaimed 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.
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