Posts tagged ‘thomas d’arcy mcgee’

April 13,

Handel’s Messiah. Thomas D’Arcy McGee. Catholic Emancipation on this day in Irish History

April 13: TODAY in Irish History (by IrishmanSpeaks) Twitter Icon

1742: Handel’s Messiah is performed for the first time at Fishamble Street Hall, Dublin. The German born composer performed a number of charity concerts in Dublin, premiering the Messiah one day later than originally planned.


George Frideric Handel 1685-1759


1825: Thomas D’Arcy McGee is born in Carlingford. Co. Louth. McGee had a major impact on two British colonies – Ireland and Canada.

Thomas D'Arcy McGee

Thomas D’Arcy McGee

Emigrating from Ireland initially to the United States at age 13, he became editor of the Boston Pilot, a Catholic newspaper by age 19. On his return to Ireland in 1845, he joined forces with Irish nationalist opinion, becoming editor of the Nation and supporting the failed Young Ireland Rebellion 1848, following which he had to leave the country for Canada where he had a distinguished career as a journalist, advocate for Catholic rights and eventually was elected to Legislative Assembly of the Province of Canada, becoming Minister of agriculture, immigration, and statistics in the 1863 Conservative government. As he got older, his stance on Irish nationalism and Fenianism changed dramatically alienating many elements of the Irish community. Following a speech in Parliament April 7, 1868, he was assassinated near his home allegedly by Fenian Patrick James Whelan. Although executed for the murder, there is some doubt as to Whelan’s guilt.

wanted poster thomas d'arcy mcgee killer

Reward for killer of McGee

1829: The Catholic Relief act after passing through Parliament March 24, finally receives Royal Assent. The act meant that Irish Catholics could take a seat in Parliament. Kerry’s Daniel O’Connell, the “Great Emancipator” was the driving force for this law. O’Connell had been elected MP for Clare forcing the Conservative government and Home Secretary Robert Peel to take action to avoid civil strife.


1928: Commander James Fitzmaurice (1898-1965) is a member of the crew of the Bremen along with Germans Hermann Koehl and Gunther Freiherr von Hunefeld, which made the first successful Trans-Atlantic East-West flight on 12–13 April 1928. The Bremen took off from Baldonnel Aerodrome on Thursday 12th April 1928 and landed on Greenly Island in Labrador the following day. The previous year ten unsuccessful East-West transatlantic attempts were made including one attempt by Fitzmaurice.

the bremen awaiting take off at Baldonnel

Bremen awaiting take off at Baldonnel

fitzmaurice stamp

Fitzmaurice on Irish stamp

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