Friday, June 25, 2004


.......When he finished his apprenticeship in architecture (under the tutelage of Patrick Byrne), Martin McDermott moved to Birkenhead in England to earn his living . However , the skill of architecture was not all that the young McDermott learned from his mentor , Patrick Byrne .......

Martin McDermott also developed an interest in the history and culture of his land and , in early 1845 , at 22 years young , he sent some of his writings to the then 3 year-young newspaper , 'The Nation' , which had been founded (in 1842) by Charles Gavan Duffy , Thomas Davis and John Dillon , after the three men had agreed the need for a Rebel newspaper whilst walking through Dublin's Phoenix Park and discussing the 'Hughes/Armagh Assizes' case (as mentioned in an earlier article on this 'blog').

Incidentally , the architect Patrick Byrne , with whom Martin McDermott served his apprenticeship , was born in Dublin in 1783 , and took up arms with the United Irishmen when he was only 15 years young ! Among the better-known buildings he designed and built are the 'Church of the Holy Redeemer' , in Bray , County Wicklow , the bell-tower of St. Paul's on Dublin's Arran Quay and Merchants Quay Church , Dublin .

Patrick Byrne had a workshop and small office at 10 Mobbet Street (off Foley Street , Dublin) and was later elected as the Vice-President of 'The Institute of Architects in Ireland' . He died , aged 81 , in 1864 .......


war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

1921 - The Big Round-Up.......

"....... the Brits had set-up their main camp in ground I knew well ; it would be possible for me to sneak in and cause them damage - stir-up the big hornet's nest ......."

" Moreover , having spent a tough and unprofitable day in Kerry , the insult to the mighty war machine would be keenly felt by its patrons . I slept soundly at Kilmacarogue until late in the morning then , towards evening , I came to Knocksaharing and started to equip myself for the rough four miles across country . First , I got ready the light aeroplane Lewis-Gun ; next I put on a strong military haversack and one by one stowed into it the spare Lewis drums . I felt I could carry five , although my total load, including a Mauser pistol , was heavy . Having securely fastened all my gear , I shouldered my gun and set off in the gathering dusk .

I kept to the fields from the very start , intending to cross roads only in favourable places and at right angles ; the reason for this caution was that I had heard that two more British military camps had been established not far away to the south-west and west . I even avoided the road from my uncle's gate to the boreen leading to Gurtanedin . The spot where I choose to cross the road was a most lonely and unfrequented place - I stepped out from behind a rock , crossed the road and dropped on one knee in a shallow depression just on the roadside . There was no fence to the road and just in front of me I heard voices . Presently there was a stumbling of many feet down a steep slope ten yards away from me ; clumps of rushes grew on either side of me - in fact I was in the middle of a lochan , now dried up by the prolonged fine weather .

I had hoped that the oncoming group would make a detour of the lochan which had a fairly steep bank five or six feet in front of me . But no ; they did not see it at all and stepped off into space and , half falling, half rising , passed on either side , narrowly escaping a collision with me ......."




(First published in 'DUBLIN DIARY' magazine , Volume 1 , No. 3 , May 1989 , page 11.)

Re-produced here in 5 parts .

[5 of 5].

The Kane extradition is taking place under the old '(1965) Extradition Act' , as the 1987 Act was not in operation when the warrants for Kane were gained by the gardai . Under Section 50(4) of the 1965 Act , Justice Minister Gerry Collins can intervene to stop the extradition and order Paul Kane's release .

It seems that justice and morality cry out for this to be done and also for Paul Kane to be compensated for the years that have been taken from him and his family . Unfortunately the Fianna Fail Government seem intent on extraditing this citizen ; should he be dragged across the border , then clearly no Irish citizen , no matter how innocent , will be safe from extradition ...

...or , indeed , safe from the fate as that currently being inflicted on the Birmingham Six , the Guildford Four , Judith Ward , the Wilshire Three , and other people whose only crime appears to be that they are Irish .

(Tomorrow - 'TALKING TO THE PROVISIONALS' : from 1985).