July 28: 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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1689: The Siege of Derry Ends
The siege of Derry finally ends as naval boats in support of Williamite forces finally break the boom intended to prevent ships from resupplying the starving Protestant masses. The failure of the siege was a major strategic disaster for the Catholic forces of King James, providing William with a powerful, motivated base in Ulster. Protestant forces had suffered terribly during the siege with as many as three thousand dying of starvation and disease. The siege still has huge significance within the Ulster Protestant community. For many loyalists, it evokes as much emotion as the 1916 Rising does amongst militant Republicans. The historically anti-Catholic Apprentice Boys Association was founded after the siege and still marches every year to commemorate the victory.
The Orange Minstrel by Colonel William Blacker (1776-1850) conveys some of the emotionalism associated with an event that is commemorated every year on July 12th.
Behold the crimson banner float
O’er yonder turrets hoary
They tell of days of matchless note
And Derry’s deathless glory
When her brave sons undaunted stood
Embattled to defend her
Indignant stemmed oppression’s flood
And sang out ‘No Surrender’
Old Derry’s walls were firm and strong
Well fenced in every quarter
Each frowning bastion grim along
With culverin and mortar
But Derry had a surer guard
Than all that art could lend her
Her ‘prentice hearts the gates who barred
And sang out ‘No Surrender’
Long may the crimson barrier wave
A meteor streaming airy
Portentous of the free and brave
Who man the walls of Derry
And Derry’s sons alike defy
Pope,traitor or pretender
And peal to heaven their ‘prentice cry
Their patriot, ‘No Surrender’
BBC has an excellent, interactive site on the Siege of Derry.
1895: Archbishop John Charles McQuaid
Birth of John Charles McQuaid, Catholic Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland between December 1940 and February 1972. McQuaid exuded immense power in what might be termed the heyday of Catholic power in Ireland. His strongly conservative views aligned with those of Eamonn De Valera and he played a significant part in the development of the Irish Constitution (1937) which accepted the special position of the Catholic Church in Ireland.
McQuaid was old school Catholic who denounced Dr. Noel Browne’s efforts to introduce pre-natal care for mothers as socialism by another name. At various times he protested mixed athletic events, (‘in athletic sports and exercises, wherein the Christian modesty of girls must be, in a special way, safeguarded, for it is supremely unbecoming that they flaunt themselves and display themselves before the eyes of all’), criticized American movie-star Jayne Mansfield’s visit to Tralee (she was rather well-endowed) and discouraged the use of tampons “I explained very fully the evidence concerning the use of internal sanitary tampons, in particular, that called Tampax. On the medical evidence made available, the bishops very strongly disapproved of the use of these appliances.”
Photo courtesy of Lux Occulta (worth looking at.)
1954: Kerry Football Legend Mikey Sheehey
Birth of Kerry footballing legend Mikey Sheehy. Sheehy would win eight All-Ireland titles with the dominant Kerry team of the 70s/80s. He is best remembered for his sensationally executed goal against Dublin in the 1978 All Ireland described in masterful form here by another Irish sporting legend, commentator Jimmy Magee.
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
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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