Posts tagged ‘fianna fail’

September 15,

De Valera and Churchill – Ireland’s First Olympic Gold – Muhammad Ali

September 15: TODAY in Irish History:

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Churchill and De Valera meeting 1953

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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SHEIFGAB! Staying Sane, Motivated and Productive in Job Search.

An insightful, realistic, yet humorous book on the job search process by Today in Irish History Curator Conor Cunneen

Special accessible price for job seekers on Kindle of $2.99

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1905: Dr. PAT O’CALLAGHAN – IRELAND’S FIRST OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALIST

Pat O’Callaghan is born near Kanturk, Co. Cork. (Other articles reference O’Callaghan’s birth dates as Twenty three years later, Dr. Pat O’Callaghan would become a national hero winning the first ever Olympic gold medal for the Independent Ireland in the Hammer Throw competition at the Amsterdam Olympics. O’Callaghan had to pay his own fare from Ireland to compete! He repeated the gold medal in Los Angeles in 1932.

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Hammer Thrower Pat_O'Callaghan
Hammer Thrower Pat O’Callaghan 1905-1991

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O’Callaghan spent a number of years in the US after winning his second gold medal. His high public profile with Irish America ensured a number of unique offers including movies and wrestling. He returned to Ireland in the late 30s and pursued a distinguished medical career.

READDr. Pat O’Callaghan profile at Sport-Reference.com

The following interesting articles on O’Callaghan each offer different birth days for a man who helped generate strong positive international profile for Ireland

READ: Pat O’Callaghan at Tipperary Athletic  (Hover over image to enlarge for reading)

READDr. Pat: The Boy from Duhallow

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1953: De Valera and Churchill Meet at Downing Street for First Time

Long time antagonists Eamonn De Valera and Winston Churchill meet for the one and only time at Downing Street.

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Churchill and De Valera meeting 1953
Churchill and De Valera 1953

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The two dominant political figures of their respective countries had a healthy dislike of each other. Churchill believed (correctly) that De Valera’s rebuke of the Treaty vote and the subsequent Irish civil war was an undemocratic act. In 1938, when De Valera in a fine act of diplomatic negotiation secured Ireland’s treaty ports from Britain (despite Irish Free State independence,  the ports had been under British authority.) Churchill bitterly criticized the action by his predecessor Neville Chamberlain.  Although De Valera could not have appreciated it at the time of the negotiations, the fact that the ports were not under the control of Britain during the war helped ensure Irish neutrality remained viable.

Very public spats between the two leaders erupted at various times, not least when De Valera, to the astonishment of the world offered condolences to Germany on the death of Adolf Hitler. On May 13, an enraged Churchill criticized “The Long Fellow” as Dev was often called in a radio address. In one of his finer moments, Dev responded to Churchill on May 16th in a very stately and conciliatory manner that evoked widespread support in Ireland and helped redeem De Valera’s reputation internationally.

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LISTEN: Eamonn De Valera Response to Churchill

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By all accounts, the meeting at Downing Street in 1953 was a relatively cordial affair. Indeed, the following year, Dev sent birthday greetings to the eighty year old Churchill, something that a few years previously might have been thought unthinkable.

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1978: Irish American Muhammad Ali Defeats Leon Spinks

Muhammad Ali defeated Leon Spinks in the Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans to win the world title for a record third time. The great fighter had Irish origins and visited Ennis, Co. Clare – his ancestral home – in 2009 as you can see in this YouTube clip. Ali twice fought and defeated “Irish” Jerry Quarry in the early 70’s.

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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

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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)

   

August 29,

Death of Eamonn De Valera on this day in Irish History

August 29: TODAY in Irish History:

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De Valera 1916 at today in irish history

De Valera 1916 Rising

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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NEW                    NEW

Product Details

SHEIFGAB! Staying Sane, Motivated and Productive in Job Search.

An insightful, realistic, yet humorous book on the job search process by Today in Irish History Curator Conor Cunneen

Special accessible price for job seekers on Kindle of $2.99

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1906: Death of Medal of Honor Winner -James Quinlan

Medal of Honor winner James Quinlan from County Tipperary
Medal of Honor winner James Quinlan from County Tipperary

James J. Quinlan (September 13, 1833 – August 29, 1906) was a Union Army officer during the American Civil War and a recipient of America’s highest military decoration—the Medal of Honor—for his actions at the Battle of Savage’s Station. His citations states he “led his regiment on the enemy’s battery, silenced the guns, held the position against overwhelming numbers, and covered the retreat of the Second Army Corps.”

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1975: Death of Eamonn De Valera

Death of Eamonn De Valera, a man who probably more than anyway shaped the culture of Ireland (good and bad) for almost fifty years. He was a man loved by his supporters but distrusted and hated by those who blamed him for the Irish civil war. (That latter sentence could equally apply to Michael Collins from the opposite side of the political divide.)

A young Dev

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Although born in Brooklyn, New York, “Dev” had an almost mystical and spiritual belief about an Ireland that he wanted to exist.

De Valera is famous for something he never said, an Ireland of “maidens dancing at the crossroads, ” but in a 1943 he did envisage “The ideal Ireland that we would have, the Ireland that we dreamed of, would be the home of a people who valued material wealth only as a basis for right living, of a people who, satisfied with frugal comfort, devoted their leisure to the things of the spirit – a land whose countryside would be bright with cosy homesteads, whose fields and villages would be joyous with the sounds of industry, with the romping of sturdy children, the contest of athletic youths and the laughter of happy maidens, whose firesides would be forums for the wisdom of serene old age.”

De Valera was one of the leaders of the 1916 Rising and only avoided execution because of his American citizenship and/or the general revulsion about the execution of the 1916 leaders. He was an immensely astute (manipulative) politician and a natural leader of the Sinn Fein TDs elected in the 1918 election.

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De Valera 1916 at today in irish history
De Valera captured – 1916

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His standing amongst his fellow TDs is evidenced by his being elected President of the first Dail Eireann (Irish Parliament) by a unanimous vote. During the War of Independence, he spent many months in the United States drumming support and finance for the Irish cause.

Huge crowd to see De Valera, Fenway Park Boston

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It is not clear why he did not get directly involved in the Treaty negotiations in London. Instead, he sent Michael Collins to negotiate on behalf of the Irish people. The signing of the Treaty on Dec 6th provided legislative autonomy for twenty six counties of Ireland, but resulted in the partition of Ireland and the foundation of the state of Northern Ireland. De Valera refused to accept the January 1923 vote of Dail Eireann approving the Treaty. Soon Ireland was again in a bloody conflict, but this time it was Irishman against Irishman in a vicious conflict laced with atrocity after atrocity on both sides.

De Valera and the anti-Treaty-ites were forced to call a halt to their campaign in May 1923. (It Is worth noting that the various campaigns conducted by the IRA throughout the rest of the 20th century derive from their lack of acceptance of this surrender or of the Treaty vote. The IRA never accepted the legitimacy of either government in the North or the Republic.)

Disillusioned with Sinn Fein and its abstentionist policies, De Valera founded Fianna Fáil in 1926. In order to take his seat in the Dail in 1927, he accepted the oath of allegiance (to the English crown) stating it to be but an empty formula. Fianna Fail came to power in 1932 and dominated the Irish political landscape for most of the century.

As Taoiseach, he kept Ireland neutral during WWII, much to the chagrin of Churchill who desperately desired Ireland’s ports. The antipathy between the two men led to a number of verbal spats with De Valera acquitting himself extremely well in the eyes of his countrymen. De Valera also responded superbly to Lloyd George protestations prior to the Treaty negotiations of 1921

The “brilliant but austere De Valera” (in the words of JFK) brought international opprobrium on Ireland when he visited the German ambassador in Dublin to offer condolences on the death of Hitler. 

In 1959, after thirty-three years at the head of Fianna Fáil, Eamon de Valera resigned as leader and Taoiseach and was elected President of Ireland (succeeding Sean T. O’Kelly), a position he held until 1973.

READ: Churchill – De Valera Relationship at WinstonChurchill.org

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READ: Fianna Fáil Biography of De Valera

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Eamonn De Valera Documentary

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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)