The art of the letter head

Thu, Jan 14, 2021

Our illustration today is of the letterhead of JJ Ward who owned The Motor and Cycle House on Eyre Square. This building is shown on the left of our illustration. It was originally occupied by Gilbeys and was next door to what is the Imperial Hotel today. James Ward set up in business here in 1903 and invited the public to ‘inspect the largest stock, the best chosen variety and the best value in Connaught in Cycles and Accessories’. In 1909 he wrote: “In my repair shop, I have the same group of hands working who have worked under me for 6 years – they know their work and do it well. I’ll give you a cycle for £7 7s as good as you can get elsewhere for a much higher price. In fact it is worth £9 9s.”

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Blake’s Castle, Quay Street

Thu, Jan 07, 2021

This drawing of Blake’s Castle was done in 1847 by George Victor Du Noyer, a Dublin born artist, geologist, and antiquarian who spent much of his life recording natural features and archeological sites around the country in the 19th century.

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The Holland influence in Galway

Wed, Dec 23, 2020

In the year 1900, Patrick Holland had a travelling shop near Athenry. He later opened a shop there and is credited with having the first car in the town. In 1914 he met Dorinda Egan and it was love at first sight. They married and had five children Brendan, Michael, Maureen, Angela and John. They eventually moved to Galway in 1930, and tried to set up a business in Dominick St. but the bank would not give them the money. They eventually managed to buy the premises of Mary Leahy’s Newsagency in Williamsgate Street.

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The British raid on Inis Mór, December 1920

Thu, Dec 17, 2020

November 1920 was a bloody month in Galway with the killing of Eileen Quinn, Fr Michael Griffin, Michael Moran, and Harry and Patrick Loughnane. D Company Auxiliaries had made their presence felt.

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An Bearna

Thu, Dec 17, 2020

In 1928, Galway Urban Council prosecuted a Mr James McHugh from Bohermore for failing to comply with a notice requiring him to remove his butcher’s stall at Kingshill, Salthill, on the grounds that he had built it without authority, beyond the alignment of the adjacent houses. In fact, Mr McHugh had already sent the council a letter requesting permission to build the stall but those on the council were not yet aware of their powers at the time, and their solicitors had advised them that they, the council, did not have any control over the erection of such structures. Though they did not approve of the stall, they had failed to notify Mr McHugh. The case went in and out of court but the stall stayed where it was.

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A writer comes for Christmas 1945

Thu, Dec 17, 2020

Back in Connemara for Christmas, which she insisted on calling Christ Mass, Ethel Mannin opens the door of her little cottage, located between Roundstone and Clifden, close to Mannin Bay. She has been away for some time. She lights fires in all three rooms, to drive away the musty smell and damp, and soon she is comfortable sitting by the window looking out at the sea, the mountains beyond. She was back to stay until restlessness, or some political challenge, calls her away again.

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The Galway camogie team, 1937

Thu, Dec 10, 2020

It is heart-warming to see the Galway Senior Camogie Team travelling to Croke Park on Saturday to play an All-Ireland final against Kilkenny, so, to honour the team of 2020, we thought to show you the team of 1937 who, having beaten Sligo in the Connacht final, went on to beat Antrim in Killester in the semi-final of that year. The score in the game was Galway 5 – 0 to Antrim’s 3 – 3.

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100 years since Oranmore’s Joe Howley was shot

Thu, Dec 10, 2020

In the centre of Oranmore, stands a statue to a local man who was shot in Dublin one hundred years ago this week. Joe Howley, Officer Commanding Number One Brigade IRA Galway was killed leaving what is now Heuston Station, Dublin on December 4 1920, and was pronounced dead at 12.30 a.m. December 5 in George V Hospital Dublin.

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Joe Howley, patriot

Thu, Dec 03, 2020

Michael Joseph Howley was born in Oranmore in 1895. His father died when Joe was just two years old. His mother was a sister of Peter Rabbitt, the proprietor of Rabbitt’s provision shop, licensed premises, and lodgings in Forster Street. She later married William Keane, the owner of Keane’s Bar in Oranmore. Joe, as he was popularly known, attended the local primary school and later went to the Bish in Galway. He obviously worked at farming as his mother once wrote, “He made a good lot with trading with cattle and sheep”.

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The Persse Windows, St Nicholas’ Collegiate Church

Thu, Nov 26, 2020

The church of St Nicholas of Myra was first built c1320, making it 700 years old this year. It is the largest medieval church in Ireland and there has been constant Christian worship there since it was built. The chancel with its three windows in the south wall dates from the beginning, the nave, and the transept date from about a century later. In 1477 Christopher Columbus is believed to have worshipped here. In 1484, the church was granted Collegiate jurisdiction by which it was to be governed by a warden and vicars who would be appointed by the mayor and burghers of the town.

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The killing of Michael Moran - Galway city, 1920

Thu, Nov 19, 2020

Sinn Féin’s declaration of an Irish Republic on January 21 1919, along with the killing of two RIC officers in Tipperary by the IRA on the same day, signalled the start of a guerrilla war for Irish independence.

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Father Griffin’s body found

Thu, Nov 19, 2020

At about 3pm on the afternoon of Saturday, November 20, 1920, William Duffy of Cloghscoilte near Barna was driving cattle locally when one of them got stuck in the mud. William noticed part of a coat sticking out of the gap, so he went for his neighbours Patrick and Thomas Lydon, and later Patrick Cloherty and Patrick Concannon from Truskey joined them at what turned out to be a grave. They uncovered part of the body and realised that it was that of Fr Griffin. They decided to wait until it was dark so they covered up the body again, afraid that the Tans might return to remove it. William Duffy rode on horseback into Fr O’Meehan in Montpellier Terrace to inform him of the tragedy. Fr O’Meehan, Fr Sexton, and Canon Considine then hired Patsy Flaherty’s side car and went out to Clochscoilte.

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Centenary of Fr Michael Griffin to be marked this weekend

Thu, Nov 12, 2020

On Saturday November 14 1920, Fr Michael Griffin was lured from his house on Montpelier Terrace by three men. By the Monday, there was no sign of him.

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Father Michael Griffin

Thu, Nov 12, 2020

Michael Joseph Griffin was born on September 18, 1892, in Gurteen in east Galway, one of five children of Thomas Griffin and Mary Kyne. He was educated locally, then in St Joseph’s College, Ballinasloe, and finally in Maynooth. He was ordained in April 1917 and was seconded to the Galway diocese. He worked for a year in Ennistymon and in June 1918 was transferred to the parish of Rahoon which stretched from the river out to Furbo and Corcullen. He developed a great rapport with the children of the parish, spoke in Irish to young and old, organised feiseanna, currach races, and donkey races on Silver Strand.

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Commemorative events on centenary of murder of Fr Micheal Griffin

Thu, Nov 12, 2020

A programme of Commemorative events has been organised to commemorate the centenary of the murder of Fr Michael Griffin during the War of Independence.

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Tomás Bán Concannon

Thu, Nov 05, 2020

Tomás Bán Concannon was born on Inis Meáin 150 years ago on November 16, 1870, the son of Páidin Concannon and Annie Faherty. He was called ‘bán’ because of his blond hair and to differentiate him from other neighbours of the same name. He was educated on the island and, unusually for an islander, in the Monastery School in Galway. When he was 15 his brother brought him to America where he went to a number of colleges and attended Eastman College in New York where he graduated with an MA in accountancy. He spent some time working in a business selling rubber stamps, then in his brother’s vineyard in California, and he later set up a business in Mexico. It was there he came across a journal called Gaodhal published by Conradh na Gaeilge in the US. So he learned to read and write in Irish in Mexico.

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Grattan Road

Thu, Oct 29, 2020

Crane’s Strand or Tráigh na gCorr appears on the 1651 map. It would seem to be the Whitestrand area before the building of Grattan Road. In Dutton’s 1824 survey we read: “It seems to be the general opinion of the oldest inhabitants that for some years past, storms and rains have been more frequent from the west than formerly. (Rice was sown here in 1585). As some corroboration of this idea, the encroachment of the sea near Recorder’s Quay on the west side of Galway, may be adduced, where the marks of the potato ridges may be seen, and where, only a few years ago were in cultivation, though they are now covered at every tide. Lately, the ground near Recorder’s Quay has been reclaimed by Mr Bulteel, and promises to remunerate his very spirited exertion.” (Probably the first ever reclamation of land in Salthill).

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The story behind Inis Oirr's Plassey Shipwreck

Wed, Oct 28, 2020

Appearing in the opening sequence of the beloved comedy series Fr Ted, on the foreshore of Craggy Island, the world famous Plassey Shipwreck is definitely one of Inis Oirr's must see locations. But are you familiar with the story of how the steam trawler found its way on to the land?

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Mícheál Walsh, The Old Malt

Thu, Oct 22, 2020

On September 22, 1920, 12 Black and Tans burst into the Old Malt Pub on High Street, breaking down the door and rushing upstairs to where Mícheál Walsh’s wife and children were sleeping. They demanded to know Mícheál’s whereabouts and then they searched the building, firing shots, exploding grenades, terrifying the children, and causing extensive damage to the property. They also broke open the safe and stole its contents, as well as taking money from the till in the bar. Clothing, alcohol, and tobacco were also stolen during the raid. The taps were opened on the barrels and then doors, cabinets, and furniture was smashed. The damage was estimated at £1,000.

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Patrick Joyce

Thu, Oct 15, 2020

Patrick Joyce was born at Lisheenagaoithe, near Headford, on May 23, 1868. He became a monitor teacher in 1884, taught in Cloghanover School for two years, later as principal of Trabane, and then Tiernee in the parish of Carraroe. In 1892 he married Margaret Donohue. He was eventually appointed as principal of Barna National School and his wife taught in Boleybeg National School.

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