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Littleton Village Unveil 1916 Plaque

Littleton-1916

Local correspondent Mr Gerry Bowe kindly sends us the following report:-

A plaque dedicated to the men and women who fought and those who died in ‘The 1916 Rising’ was officially unveiled at the ‘Munitir na Tire’ (National Organisation Promoting Community Development in Ireland)  Hall, Littleton on Saturday last, April 23rd 2016, by Mr Seamus Hanafin, (Councillor & Cathaoirleach, Tipperary County Council).

Mr Gerard Neville, (Sean Treacy Pipe Band), gave his rendition of music, on bagpipes, of all relevant music relating to the history of 1916.

Mr David Brown officially welcomed guests; Mr Hanafin (MCC), and Rev.Fr. George Bourke, Rev.Fr.Joe Tynan (Local Priests) and the many others from the local community, who were in attendance for the unveiling.

Mr Brown formally invited Mr Hanafin to officially unveil the 1916 Plaque, following which Mr Hanafin gave a very interesting and inspiring talk on 1916 and the Irish Proclamation.

The newly unveiled plaque was commissioned to honour the sixteen Patriots who were executed after the 1916 rising, together with the brave men and women who fought and those who died during this troubled period in our Irish history. It is especially dedicated to all those from Co. Tipperary or with Tipperary connections who died; those who fought and those who were ready to fight and later went on to give their lives for freedom and independence in later years, which we as Irish people enjoy today.

Fr. Bourke then read prayers in both Irish and English; blessing the Plaque and recited that wonderful poem; now a hymn; “I see His Blood upon the rose” by executed Irish nationalist, poet, journalist, leader of the 1916 Easter Rising, and signatory of the 1916 Irish Proclamation (Easter Proclamation), Joseph Mary Plunkett.

It should be noted that following the surrender in 1916, Joseph Mary Plunkett, aged 28, was held in Kilmainham Gaol, where he faced a court martial. Seven hours before his execution by firing squad, he was married in the prison chapel to his sweetheart Grace Gifford. Grace’s sister, Muriel, was married to Thomas MacDonagh, a native of Cloughjordan, Co. Tipperary and Joseph Plunkett’s best friend; former who was also executed for his role in the Easter Rising.

Mr Brown then introduced M/s Tara O’Brien who gave her rendition, on Concertina, of “The Foggy Dew” and Mr Micheál Treacy who recited “Who fears to speak of Easter week ?”.  Mr Paddy Lambe then sang “The Foggy Dew.”

Mr Brown thanked the organisers and those who took part in the unveiling ceremony.

‘Amhrán na bhFiann’ (‘The Soldiers’ Song’, Irish National Anthem) was sung by all in attendance, accompanied by Mr Gerard Neville on Bagpipes.

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Kitty Kiernan Car To Go On Display In Thurles

Lions2

Pictures: (1) Lions Club Poster, (2) Car actually used by Kitty Kiernan & Michael Collins, (3) Lions Club Vintage Car Emblem to be presented to all vintage cars on display.

A 1916 Ford Model T, once belonging to Larry Kiernan, brother of Kitty Kiernan and used often by both Kitty and Michael Collins, will be just one of the star viewing attractions at the forthcoming Thurles Lion’s Club Vintage & Classic Car Show on May 8th 2016 next here in Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

One of the principal founders of our Irish State independence and later Chairman of the Irish Provisional Government, Michael Collins was first introduced to the ‘bubbly and cheerful’ Kiernan sisters and their family, by his cousin Gearóid O’Sullivan. Gearóid was already courting Kitty’s sister Maud. Kitty, latter the fiancée of Michael Collins, planned to marry in Dublin on November 22nd 1922, in a double ceremony, to include her sister Maud and Gearóid O’Sullivan. The death of Collins four months earlier sadly however would result in only one wedding taking place, with Kitty attending same, dressed in black.

As already stated, the 1916 Ford Model T belonged to Kitty’s brother Larry and has just recently been restored. Back in 1916, it was then a new car – just of the assembly line, when it first arrived in Granard, Co. Longford, with Larry having it registered then as a hackney vehicle. Larry, trading as L.D. Kiernan, was a successful businessman in Granard, owning the Greville Arms Hotel, a shop and a licensed premises, latter which he inherited from his parents Bridget and Peter Kiernan, following both their deaths in 1908, within a couple of months of each other.

In 1916, the car drove two volunteers to Dublin including Paul Cusack, a relative of Larry Kiernan’s wife and later often collected Michael Collins from Ballywillan Railway Station, situated on the Dublin to Cavan railway line, when he visited Granard to see Kitty.

Over 35 years ago the vehicle was discovered in a field, in the Mullinlaghata/Cloncivid area of Co. Longford; in very poor condition, however, with the help of a local vintage enthusiast, the wreck was brought back to a garage in Granard and since then has been slowly and carefully restored to its original glory.

Thurles Lion’s Club Vintage, Classic Car Show
This vehicle will be just one of the many items on view at the Thurles Lions Club’s Annual Vintage/Classic Car Show and family day, to be held in Thurles Greyhound Stadium on Sunday May 8th 2016 beginning at 12:00 noon5:00pm.

Amongst the other attractions will be; a Dog Show; an Artisan Food Fare; Craft Stalls; a Bouncy Castle; Auto-Jumblers; Face Painting; an Obstacle Course; a Fortune Teller and a 1916 Exhibition of rarely seen artefacts, latter not just relating to that troubled period in our Irish history, but to a broader world history of that particular era, one hundred years ago.

With children under 12 years FREE and admission to adults only costing €5, this well organised event is expected to attract a large crowd of visitors to Thurles on Sunday, May 8th next.

With less than two weeks to go, do mark your calendar and watch this website, especially coming nearer to the date of this event, for further details and more exiting news.

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Your Chance To ‘See Old Ireland Free’

The Office of Public Works (OPW) are pleased to announce that as and from today (6/4/2016), or on the first Wednesday of every month, during 2016, all their managed Heritage Sites in Tipperary and throughout Ireland will offer FREE ADMISSION to individuals wishing to visit their sites, for the duration of their tourism opening season.

The Swiss Cottage Cahir

Swiss Cottage, Cahir, Co. Tipperary.

The list of participating sites in Co. Tipperary include:-  Cahir Castle,*  Rock of Cashel,  Roscrea Heritage (Castle and Damer House) and the Blackmills, and the Swiss Cottage.

* Note: Where an asterisk is shown above; same venues are open all year-round while others may have more limited seasonal periods of operation.

Details on the above venues and other national Irish tourist attractions can be found by simply clicking HERE

That means sites like Kilkenny Castle and Clonmacnoise, which usually charge €17 for a family visit, the recently-restored Kilmainham Gaol (€16) and Ross Castle in Killarney (€10), won’t cost a cent to visit, except perhaps for parking in some instances.

Tickets will be allocated on a ‘first come / first served’ basis with normal conditions of admission applying at all sites. Visitors may experience delays at some of the busier sites and are therefore advised to arrive early.

If allocated a time, visitors are asked to arrive promptly for the start of their tour. There is no guarantee that visitors who miss their allocated tour-slot can be accommodated at a later time. Children must be supervised at all times and access to some sites will be by guided tour only. Visitors are also warned that opening times can change at short notice.

So please, old age pensioners & those enjoying free travel, do take advantage and use this opportunity “To see old Ireland free.”

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Lest Thurles Forgets General Richard Mulcahy

In 2016 we commemorate, rightfully, those who took part in the Irish 1916 Easter Rising. From a Thurles commemorative perspective however, perhaps the name Richard James Mulcahy was somewhat sidelined, due to the 1916 Easter Rising being mostly confined to Dublin city.

This in mind, let us not forget that one action, if not the most successful of all 1916 actions undertaken by Irish Volunteers, took place in Ashbourne, County Meath. It was here on April 28th 1916, under the leadership of Thomas Ashe (A national school teacher from Lusk, who would later die on hunger strike), and his second-in-command, Richard James Mulcahy (A post office engineer from Thurles), together with 45 Fingal Volunteers, attacked a Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) barracks.

History credits Richard Mulcahy with the defeat of the RIC at Ashbourne, through his engagement in a flanking movement made on an opposing police column; latter who were rushed to reinforce their already surrendered comrades.

Arrested after the rising, Mulcahy was later interned at Knutsford and at the Frongoch internment camps in Wales, until his release on in 1917.

Risteard_Mulcahy

Pic (1) Michael Collins (center) with Richard Mulcahy; Pic (2) General Richard Mulcahy TD; Pic (3) Mulcahy with his wife Mary (Affectionately known as ‘Min’) in 1922.

Who was Richard James Mulcahy?

Richard (Dick) James Mulcahy [Irish: Risteárd Séamus Ó Maolchatha (1886 -1971)] was originally born in Manor Street, Co. Waterford on May 10th, 1886.  He began his educated, first at Mount Sion Christian Brothers School, Waterford and later at Thurles C.B.S, when his father and family transferred to reside in Thurles, County Tipperary. In 1902 he joined the post office Engineering Department, working first in Thurles and later in Bantry, Co Cork, Dublin and Wexford.  Shortly after his arrival in Dublin, Mulcahy joined the Irish Republican Brotherhood in 1907 and later in 1913, joined the Irish Volunteers.

Continue reading Lest Thurles Forgets General Richard Mulcahy

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Thurles Reaction To Daylight Saving Act Of 1916

 

A reminder to all; this Sunday, between 1:00am and 2:00am, our clocks and watches will require to be skipped forward by one hour, thus depriving everyone of 60 minutes of precious shut-eye. Those with high tech gadgets e.g. Mobile Phones, Computers, Laptops etc. need not worry, as same time change will automatically occur without any required personal intervention on our part.

With 1916 on everyone’s lips this weekend, due to our celebrations commemorating the Irish Easter Rising, keep in mind that the ‘Daylight Saving Act’ was first introduced in that very same year. The first notion of attempting to not waste our daylight came about following a campaign which was begun in 1907, by the Edwardian British builder William Willett. It took until 1916 for those in authority to realise that this same time changing action would reduce considerable unnecessary energy consumption; while also saving countless lives, since fewer accidents occur in the mornings, when compared to our darker evenings.

So how did Thurles people and residents of our surrounding hinterland take to the first introduction of the ‘Daylight Saving Act’ in 1916? We find our answer recorded in the journal kept by Fr. Michael Maher C.C., Thurles, and then Secretary to the Archbishop of Cashel and Emly, Dr. John Mary Harty.

Fr. Michael Maher C.C. writes:

May 21st 1916
“A new ordinance came into force in the middle of May; it was called the ‘Daylight Saving Act‘. It meant that all clocks were to be put forward an hour on the morning of Sunday the 21st May at two o’clock and they were to be left at that standard until the night of the 1st of October.

NPG x91747; William Willett by Elliott & Fry

William Willett (1856 – 1915)

In former years, a Mr. [William] Willet of London frequently introduced a bill into the House of Commons to this effect, but it was always killed with ridicule. The poor man died a short time ago without having his hopes realised and now, when it was found that an immense saving would be effected through the curtailing of artificial light, and as economy was recommended in all possible directions, the bill was introduced again and became an act of parliament without laughter or opposition.

We did not put on the Cathedral clock [Cathedral of The Assumption, Thurles] until after the devotions on Sunday night, because we did not know on the previous Sunday whether the act would apply to Ireland, and so we could not forewarn the people about the change in the hours of the services. The people in the towns fell in with the change without demur and everything went on just as before. We altered nothing except the hands of the clock. Some of the country people kept to the old time except on Sunday, when they had to go to Mass an hour earlier.

It did not suit the country parts as much as the towns, because the morning is not a good time for saving hay or carrying on harvesting operations, the evening is much better, so if the men stopped work at six o’clock by the new time they would leave off when the hay or corn was in the best condition to be put together or cut down. On dairy farms too, the milkers who had to rise at 4:30 or 5:00 o’clock by the old time, would have to part with their beds at an unearthly hour by the new reckoning.

In towns on the other hand it suited admirably because it gave a long bright evening to the populace after shops were closed and work abandoned. It made no difference to the clergy except that the 12:00 o’clock Mass in towns was much more convenient according to the new regulations.”

Roll on those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer!

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