Posted in Posts and podcasts

After hours – 1925

Connacht Tribune 5th December, 1925 p5 (abridged)

One for the road. Photo: EO'D
One for the road.
Photo: EO’D

There is more illegal trading going on in this village than in any other village in Ireland, said Supdt. English, Gort, at Kinvara District Court, when Mr –, a publican in a village between Kinvara and Clarenbridge, was prosecuted for a breach of the licensing code on Sunday. The district justice, after hearing the evidence, imposed a fine of 40s and endorsed the license.

The evidence was that on a recent Sunday the Guards who were on public house duty visited the place and found the front door and the bar opened, and a crowd of people in the yard. There was a man in the kitchen and Mr and Mrs — were in the shop. Mr — was behind the counter with a bottle of stout in one hand and a glass in the other, in the act of filling out the liquor. When the Guards approached the crowd ran away and it was his (superintendent’s) opinion that “scouts” were on the look out.
The Guards, he continued, had the greatest difficulty in supervising this illegal traffic in Sunday drinking and this man was convicted before in January last. Mr — told the Guards that the man in the kitchen was an invited guest and a friend of his. The Guards examined the premises and found traces of porter on the counter and fresh porter in glasses. At the time the Guards visited the place it was 12.25 p.m. – Guard McGuire and the local sergeant corroborated. When they went there they said the door was wide open, and when Mr — saw them entering he endeavoured to close up the bar by pulling down a latticed shutter between the shop and the bar, and when questioned he said the men were all bonafide travellers.
Magistrate (to defendant):
Have you anything to say?
Mr –;
The men were all bonafide.
You could not have them there before one o’clock, even if they were. You should know the provisions of the new Act as a publican.
I have nothing to do with the yard attached.
It is attached to and licensed as well as your premises and you are bound to see that nobody is there only those entitled to be there. You are bound to exercise strict supervision over the yard as well as the premises.
Mr –;
People come there and put their carts in my yard while they are at Mass.
I know nothing about that. It might be a cloak to get drink illegally.
There is more illegal trading going on here than in any village in Ireland and the Guards cannot exercise supervision owing to the “scouts”.
I hope that this thing will be put down and that the Guards will keep a watchful eye on the place, and I will impose a fine of 40s and endorse the license and make a D.W.P. order against the man found on the premises.

Posted in Posts and podcasts

Kinvara exports – 1867

Irish Examiner 23rd April, 1867 p1 (abridged)

Patates Photo: Scott Bauer, USDA ARS Wikimedia Commons -
Photo: Scott Bauer, USDA ARS Wikimedia Commons –

Just arrived the Schooner Westward, with 110 Tons from Kinvarra in the Galway Bay, the shipment of Joyce and Curtin, in the English and Limerick markets, where the quality of those potatoes are known.
They array from 10s to 15s per ton more than others, and go by the name of “Galway Protestants.” Those requiring them for seed should put down a lesser quantity, as they are of a prolific nature, otherwise the crop will be bad. Parties wishing for a good summer potatoe will find it their interest to supply themselves out of present cargo.

Posted in Posts and podcasts

Galway Bay – 1914

Irish Independent 30th October, 1914 p3

Galway Bay EO'D
Galway Bay

A rumour gained currency in Galway on Wednesday evening that mines had been laid in Galway Bay. It appears that when the ss Karlsburg from Sweden, with timber, steamed into the harbour, 20 police and coastguard officers boarded her and remained throughout the night. Their places were taken by fresh constables yesterday morning. A thorough examination of the vessel, however, found nothing that lent colour to the mine laying story.
In an interview with the mate of the Karlsburg it transpired that the Admiralty early on Wednesday wired to the Customs officials at Galway to detain the vessel on suspicion.

Posted in Posts and podcasts

Crab Island, Doolin – 1918

Freemans Journal 17th April, 1918 p3 (abridged)

Crab Island, Doolin, County Clare Photo: Dr Charles Nelson Wikimedia Commons
Crab Island, Doolin, County Clare
Photo: Dr Charles Nelson
Wikimedia Commons

The County Clare police have arrested a man who entered Crabbe (Crab) Island, in a sheltered inlet of Galway Bay, near Doolin, in a collapsible boat, and who declared that he had escaped from an American ship that had been sunk by a German submarine.
It appears that the ship mentioned was not sunk, and the mysterious visitant of this lonely coast, which is well within the bay, being unable to give a satisfactory account of his presence, was conveyed by the naval authorities to Scotland Yard.
He wore the clothes of an ordinary civilian with a frieze coat, and it appears that he got £45 in silver at an Ennistymon bank. He is a man of education and states that he is a native of Munster.
The collapsible boat is not of the ordinary type but has cork stays and can be rolled up into a small parcel.
He was taken to Dublin on the way to London

Posted in Posts and podcasts

Claddagh -v- Kinvara 1864

Freeman’s Journal 13th September, 1864 p2(abridged)

The Quay, Kinvara. Photo: EO'D
The Quay, Kinvara.
Photo: EO’D

Everyone in Galway is aware of the immense quantities of herrings that are at present in the bay but the Claddagh men will only go out every second night to capture them.
On Tuesday night Captain Oliver, one of the pilots, went out in his boat. This being a prohibited night, he soon found that he was being chased by two large hookers – watch boats, as they are termed – each filled with men. Seeing that he could not fight them he ran into Oranmore Bay and thus escaped.
On Friday night the “watchmen” succeeded in committing an outrage. Several boats from Kinvara were fishing when three or four Claddagh hookers, with about twelve men in each, bore down and cut away some of the nets. The boats that escaped came into market with immense quantities of herrings.
Very few of the Claddagh boats are marked, according to law, so that identification in such cases is almost impossible.

Posted in Posts and podcasts

Galway to Kinvara 1924

Freemans Journal 19th January, 1924 p8

Galway Bay Photo: Norma Scheibe
Galway Bay
Photo: Norma Scheibe

Lieut Commander O’Donnell, of the Free State Coastal Patrol, a native of the Aran Islands, has initiated a scheme of coastal traffic in Galway Bay and proposes to run a direct service from Galway to Kinvara with the motor boat, St. Nicholas, and later to trade along the Northern coast of the county to Clifden.

Posted in Posts and podcasts

A walk in the Burren – Temple Cronan

Temple Cronan, the Burren, County Clare Photo: EO'D
Temple Cronan, the Burren, County Clare
Photo: EO’D
Temple Cronan Photo: EO'D
Temple Cronan
Photo: EO’D

Temple Cronan, the Burren, County Clare has been dated to the 12th Century.

The church is Romanesque in style, with carved stone heads (human and animal) on projections around the walls. Small shrines lie to the east and south east of the church and beyond the enclosure traces of several dwellings can be seen. A small track leads from Temple Cronan to a holy well – and to a wonderful walk through the hills. A beautiful site, in a beautiful place – the Burren, County Clare.

Posted in Posts and podcasts

Legends of the sea – 1926

Fermanagh Herald 9th January, 1926 p6

Aran Islands, West of Ireland Photo: Fabio Grasso Creative Commons
Aran Islands, West of Ireland
Photo: Fabio Grasso
Creative Commons

Fishermen have legends all their own. They say that the reason why the flounder has one side white is that the Blessed Virgin once placed her hand upon it, and that the spot where her lily hand rested has been the colour of the snow ever since.
An eminent tradition is to the effect that it was the haddock in whose mouth St. Peter discovered the tribute money; that the spots upon its body near the gills was caused by the pressure of the Apostle’s fingers.
The pike, like the passion flower, carries upon it the marks of the Crucifixion such as the cross, nails and sword. This, sailors will tell you, is because the pike remained above the water when all the other fish fled to the bottom of the sea in panic when they found that the Saviour was to be put to death.
The Blessed Virgin has always been considered the especial patroness of those “going down to the sea in ships.” To her they appealed when in danger of shipwreck and ships sailing past any of her sanctuaries used to salute her by striking their topsails or chewing up the topsail sheets. Most of the ships in the Royal Navy of England were in Catholic days given one of her own sweet names. The fishing fleets of all continental countries have always honour her in a similar manner.

Eight different species of fish, including cod, haddock, halibut and mackerel, are lying on a beach. Coloured etching by J. Miller after J. Stewart. Wellcome Images; Creative Commons
Eight different species of fish, including cod, haddock, halibut and mackerel, are lying on a beach. Coloured etching by J. Miller after J. Stewart.
Wellcome Images; Creative Commons

While Our Lady as Star of the Sea has ever been the protectress of all sailors, St. Nicholas has in a special sense been the patron of fishing towns. Many caves along the coast of France have been used as chapels in which both the Blessed Virgin and St. Nicholas have had especial honour.

Formerly it was considered a token of great good fortune when mackerel fleets could arrange to start out on May day; and the sailors took delight in decorating May day garlands. When the mackerel nets, with floats attached, were thrown into the water the sailors would sing;
Watch, barrel, watch, mackerel for to catch!
White may they be like a blossom on a tree!
God send thousands, one, two and three!
Some by their heads, some by their tails
God sends thousands, and never fails.
Then the captain would cry “Seas all!” and over the nets would go.

Ships of olden time often bore an image of Our Lady as a figure head. With her leading them they never lacked courage to fare out into the wide waste of waters.
“Catholic Bulletin

Posted in Posts and podcasts

County Clare – 1898

Kildare Observer 22nd January, 1898 p10

Cliffs of Moher Photo: Norma Scheibe
Cliffs of Moher
Photo: Norma Scheibe

Acrostic on County Clare by Mrs Maunsell – Christmas 1897

Can we fitly sing the praises of our native Clare
Ocean washed, and verdure coated, hills and lakes and valleys fair,
Under trees whose spreading branches ferns flourish, flowers blow;
Now we see wild rocky stretches, Shannon ripple, Fergus flow.
Time has left his track in ruins, noble halls and castles grand,
Yet their stately, silent presence lends a glory to the land.

Cliffs of Moher, proud, majestic, rise unrivalled on the coast
Lovely sands, and snowy billows, lost in wonderment we boast;
And it cannot pass unnoticed, by all lovers of the sea,
Reigning o’er our pleasant homeland, queenly watering place Kilkee
Erin’s sons may well be proud and sing her praises long and loud