" A wealth of information..."

"1169 And Counting is a wealth of information on our Republican past and present , and demonstrates how the Irish political landscape , like that of any nation, will never be a black and white issue..."

(From the ‘e-Thursday’ section of the ‘Business Week’ supplement of the ‘Irish Independent’ , 21st August 2008.)



IRISH BLOG AWARDS 2017 - ooops! It seems that our entry application was "not completed in time to be considered.." (?) and, as such, we are not now in the running. But we wish all the best to the successful entrants and to the organisers, and we hope all goes well for them on the day!


Wednesday, June 30, 2004

MARTIN McDERMOTT , 1823-1905 : YOUNG IRELANDER .......

....... Martin McDermott was 'Chief Architect' to the Egyptian Government when , in 1882 , the Brits bombed the City of Alexandria (July 11th , 1882) ; he designed new buildings to replace those destroyed , then, at sixty years of age , he retired and moved to London , England .......

Whilst living in London , Martin McDermott became involved in the thriving literary scene ; he helped to establish the Southwark Library Club in the same year that he moved there (1883) and , at 68 years of age , he was a founding member of the Irish Library Society (in 1891). He published a number of books ('The Coulin' , 'The Exile') and , at 71 years of age , wrote 'The New Spirit of The Nation' , perhaps his best known work .

His old friend Charles Gavan Duffy assisted him , in 1896 , when he was 73 years of age , in publishing his 'Songs and Ballads of Young Ireland' . After a life which saw him born into a wealthy family , become a leading architect , hold political discussions with a revolutionary government and spend 35 years in Egypt , Martin McDermott died in Bristol , England , on April 25th , 1905 . He was 82 years of age .

Again , we found it difficult to obtain the above information on this man - like many of those we attempt to write about on this 'blog' , the name 'Martin McDermott' did not 'jump-out' at us from the history books , and we can only hope we have done him justice . The man made his mark in his day but , like many others , todays commercialised society sees no value in remembering him .

To us , Martin McDermott is another link to our past , part of an 835-year-old saga . And Counting .......

[END of ' MARTIN McDERMOTT , 1823-1905 : YOUNG IRELANDER.......'].
(Tomorrow - '1976: IRA Jail Break.......').


WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

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

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

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

".......the 'Big Round-Up' was over ; the Brits were pulling-out of the area . The last to leave were 'The Essex Regiment' ('Percival's Crowd') and I knew the direction in which they were leaving - I had my Lewis-Gun , I was high up on Candroma Rock and I had the advantage of surprise ......."

"I would have given much for a shot at that murderous crowd . As they passed me by , I recognised John J. Quill , a prisoner among them ; I was in no doubt about what the result for him would be if I fired on them . Some hours later they wantonly fired at and killed Den Buckley at Toames . At the same time I must give the devil his due , and tell how one of 'Percival's Crowd' saved the life of my uncle before their rearguard had passed out of my sight ; my uncle had come to the Cross for some provisions , and left his horse and cart near the door of Den Buckley's shop and pub , which stood at the corner made by two roads .

Down the hill from Caherdaha came the Advance Party of British troops on bicycles ; some one ran to the pub door and gave the alarm and my uncle Dan ran out , jumped on his cart and went off at a fast trot . Reaching the corner , the Brits saw him go and dismounted , unslung their rifles and shouted at him to stop . He kept going . " Open fire on him ," a British Officer ordered : " No , do not," said another , " he does not hear us with the noise of the cart . I'll follow him ." Mounting his bicycle , the Brit chased after and overtook the cart . My uncle pulled up , feigning surprise as well as he could . " Did you not hear us calling you ?" the soldier asked . " No " , my uncle said , " I heard nothing until you spoke . "

A few simple questions about his business at the village and where he was going to were put to him , and he was allowed to go . Meanwhile , the rest of the British Advance Party entered the pub ; the day was warm and a dozen customers were on the premises ; nearly all were past military age and none could be accused of having a military appearance . But that did'nt matter to 'Percival's Crowd'......."

(MORE LATER).


TALKING TO THE PROVISIONALS.......

" The British Government has twice entered into detailed negotiations with representatives of the IRA . Nollaig O Gadhra recalls the talks that took place exactly ten years ago between the Northern Ireland (sic) Office and the Provisional Republican Movement . "

By Nollaig O Gadhra .


(From 'The Sunday Press' newspaper , 10th February 1985).
Re-produced here in 12 parts .
5 of 12 .

The game of bluff ended on 22 January 1975 , when the British returned to the bargaining table , handing over a copy of the Rees Statement in the Commons , and emphasising two points in particular which stressed a positive role for Sinn Fein as the political wing of the Republican Movement , if a Truce came into operation on a permanent basis , and steps were needed to ensure it did not break down .

They also stressed that they would have to break off the talks if two acts like those which had happened in Belfast the previous day , were repeated . On this and on several other occasions , while the British stressed the need for an over-all ceasefire , the impression was given that IRA attacks on Britain were particularly resented . They had a political effect on Westminster far outweighing much greater horrors in 'Northern Ireland' (sic) though this did not mean , of course , that London was in any way over-looking the suffering which violence had caused there .......

(MORE LATER).