Posted in Posts and podcasts

The Banshee – 1898

The Globe-republican 3rd November, 1898 p3(abridged)

Spirit Child Acrylic on canvas EO;D
Spirit Child
Acrylic on canvas

God between us and all harm
For I tonight have seen
A banshee in the shadow pass
Along the dark boreen.

And as she went she keened and cried
And combed her long white hair.
She stopped at Molly Reilly’s door,
And sobbed till midnight there.

And is it for himself she moans
Who is so far away?
Or is it Molly Reilly’s death she cries
Until the coming day?

Now Molly thinks her man is gone
A sailor lad to be.
She puts a candle to her door
Each night for him to see.

But he is off to Galway town.
And who dare tell her this?
Enchanted by a woman’s eyes,
Half maddened by her kiss.

So as we go by Molly’s door
We look toward the sea,
And say “May God bring home your lad
Wherever he may be.”

I pray it may be Molly’s self
The banshee keens and cries,
For who dares breathe the tale to her
Be it her man who dies?

For there is sorrow on the way,
For I tonight have seen
A banshee in the shadow pass
Along the dark boreen.

Posted in Posts and podcasts

Duras Mills, Kinvara – 1898

Tuam Herald 24th December, 1898 p.4

Barley (Hordeum vulgare)  Photo: Cliff  Wikimedia Commons
Barley (Hordeum vulgare)
Photo: Cliff
Wikimedia Commons

John O’Dea, the proprietor of Duras Mills, Kinvara, was awarded second prize, Co. Galway Section by the Distillers Committee of the Royal Dublin Society’s Show, for the barley exhibited by him at the late show at Ballsbridge. The sample exhibited was taken out of a large quantity grown on Mr. O’Dea’s farm at Duras, and purchased at the Kinvara market by Messrs H.S. Persse, Ltd, Nuns Island Distillery, Galway. It speaks well for Mr O’Dea’s enterprise to be an exhibitor at the show and it is hoped his example will be followed by a good few of his neighbours entering for the Winter show, 1899. With a little more care and attention to the cultivation and saving of the crop there should be no difficulty in a Kinvara farm obtaining first prize, for the quality of the grain grown in the locality is second to none in Ireland.

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

Posted in Posts and podcasts

Educational equality – 1898

New Zealand Tablet 8th April, 1898 p9

National University of Ireland, Galway  Photo: Rob Smyth.  Wikimedia Commons
National University of Ireland, Galway
Photo: Rob Smyth.
Wikimedia Commons

A great meeting was held in Galway to consider the Catholic University question, and as might be expected, the Galway people spoke with no uncertain sound on the just claims of Catholics to educational equality. Professor Pye, MD., J. P., proposed the first resolution which ran as follows :—

“That we adopt the claim put forward by the Catholic laity of Ireland in their recent declaration, and reaffirmed by the national meeting held in Dublin, on the 11th inst., for perfect equality with our non-Catholic fellow-countrymen in all that regards endowment and privileges of University institutions, and express our determination to enforce that claim by every constitutional means in our power.”

The resolution was supported by Professor Steinberger, M.A., F.R.U.I., in a speech so fitting and to the point that we cannot refrain from quoting. He said he had travelled or lived in most of the countries of Europe, and when he first come to Ireland to learn the Irish language he met with many surprises. Nothing surprised him more than to find Ireland — which taught the greater part of the countries of Europe, and but for which he might now be a barbarian on the Alps or on the Danubem is without a University of its own.

He was astonished to find that the Catholic people of Ireland had no University. If they looked to India they could find the people provided for in this respect. If they looked to Austria, which was pretty much like the British Empire, in having under its dominion many different races and people speaking various languages, they would find the higher educational wants of these people well provided. Ireland is the only place in Europe where the majority of the people have no University.”

The following resolution was also carried;
“That we call on the members of Parliament for the town and county to press the Catholic claim for perfect educational equality on the House of Commons on every suitable occasion, and to expose the urgency of the grievance, and the injustice which a delay in dealing with it inflicts on the Catholic community.”

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Aughinish – 1898

Aughinish Tower Wikimedia org
Aughinish Tower
Wikimedia org

Kentucky Irish American 23rd July, 1898 p7

Major Wilson Lynch of Galway has been evicting his unfortunate tenants at Aughinish, on the south side of Galway Bay. He has dispossessed Michael Costello, his wife and many little delicate children. The wife had a doctor’s certificate testifying to the danger of removing her, but out she had to go. Costello has paid over and over again the fee simple purchase money of his dwelling.

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The Brown Wind of Connaught – 1898

New Ulm Review 17th August, 1898 p6

Currach, Inisbofin
Currach, Inisbofin


The brown wind of Connaught
Across the bogland blown
(The brown wind of Connaught)
Turns my heart to stone,
For it cries my name at twilight
And cries it at the noon
“Oh Mairgread Ban! Oh Marigread Ban!”
Just like a fairy tune.

The brown wind of Connaught
When Dermot came to woo
(The brown wind of Connaught),
It heard his whispers, too,
And while my wheel goes whirring
It taps on my window pane
Till I open wide to the dead outside
And the sea salt misty rain.

The brown wind of Connaught
With women wailed one day
(The brown wind of Connaught)
For a wreck in Galway Bay,
And many the dark faced fishers,
That gathered their nets in fear,
But one sank straight to the ghostly gate,
And he was my Dermot dear.

Shan Van Vocht

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Dear Mr Ford – 1898

Easter Lily Wikimedia Commons
Easter Lily
Wikimedia Commons
New Zealand Tablet, 8th July 1898 P9 (abridged)

Dear Mr Ford,

I send you two dollars for dear Ireland.

I left Doneraile in 1848 with my husband and one child. The visions of the famine victims dying in every caving at that time will ever remain in my mind. I had two children before leaving Ireland. I buried my baby the day before we sailed. The other child was buried at sea.

My husband took to grieving, and died later on, leaving me alone in the world.

I pray night and day for Ireland’s liberty. But I am now 72 years old, and I am afraid I shall not live to see it.

God help dear Ireland

Mary Murray

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The Tablet – 1898

Daguerrotype with venerable Catherine McAuley circa 1840 Wikimedia commons
Daguerrotype with venerable Catherine McAuley
circa 1840
Wikimedia commons
The Tablet 8th May, 1898
His Eminence Cardinal Logue received last week the religious professions of two nuns at the Convent of Mercy, Dundalk. During the ceremony his Eminence delivered a touching address on the duties, obligations, and privileges of the religious life. The young ladies professed were Miss Delia Corless, in religion Sister Mary Ethnia, of Kinvara, County Galway, and Miss Kate Flatley, in religion Sister Mary Lucy, also of Kinvara.