" 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 - we made it to the finalists page last year but never got to the stage :- ( 'cause not enough of ye feckers out there voted for us! So we're gonna give ya a second chance - the blog awards this year will be held on Thursday, October 5th (2017) in The Academy, Middle Abbey Street, in Dublin city centre, and we would appreciate if you could keep an eye here and give us a vote when ya can. Or else we'll get our 'Junior' to put up a pay wall and then ye will be sorry...!

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

'TAN WAR' REPUBLICAN NEWSPAPER - 'An tOglach' , 1918-1921.......

.......once again , this time in March 1919 , 'An tOglach' Editor Piaras Beaslai was 'arrested' by the Brits (under the 'DORA' legislation) ; but he did'nt stay locked-up in Dublin's Mountjoy Jail for long .......

In early April 1919 , eighteen Irish Republican POW's escaped from the 'Joy , one of whom was Piaras Beaslai but , unfortunately for him , this time freedom did'nt stay long - the Brits caught up with him on May 1st , 1919 but , this time , they sent him out of the country - back to Strangeways Prison in Manchester , England . However , again - he did'nt stay long !

The IRA organised a 'jailbreak' from Strangeways Prison on 20th October 1919 - six prisoners , including Piaras Beaslai and Austin Stack , were free again . Incidentally (another 'tangent...' !) , when Piaras Beaslai was 'arrested' by the Brits for the first time in 1919 (ie in March) , he was succeeded as Editor of 'An tOglach' by Ernest Blythe , TD (in the First Dail , 32-County body) for North Monaghan , and Minister for Trade and Commerce .

Blythe , a Northern Protestant , had some experience in editing a newspaper - with Michael Collins .......



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

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


".......two lorries of British Auxiliaries were on their way ; 'Mick the Soldier' and myself were knocking on doors , warning our friends and comrades to make themselves scarce . Dannie Sheehan's shop was open , and his wife was sitting by the fire ...... "

" Tadhg Buckley had just entered as we reached the shop doorway - " How are you Tadhg , " said Mrs. Sheehan . " I am the happiest man in the world , " said Tadhg , " until I hear the sound of a lorry ! " " Tadhg , " I spoke sharply , " get out now . "

He turned quickly and made a dash through the doorway ; just outside was a large polished limestone slab and Tadhg's heels , to use a local expressive saying , " went from under him " on the polished surface and he came down with a crash . ' Mick the Soldier ' found time for a burst of immoderate laughter , while poor Tadhg quickly regained his feet and , crossing the road, disappeared over the meadow fence .

We hastened along past Johnson's Forge until we reached the point where the fence of the Brewery Field joined that of the road at right angles . Here we left the road and slipped along by that fence on the side remote from the village . Reaching a certain point , we stopped to reconnoitre ; we heard a noise on the other side of the fence - my uncle and Jerrick Sheehan were just taking up a position with their backs to the fence , and to us : Jerrick spoke - " Do bheirim o'n diol , Dan , I brought my pint with me . Ould soldier , boy ! " he said in triumph .

A row of strong furze bushes grew along the top of the fence ; raising our heads cautiously , we were just in time to see Jerrick place his pint on a flat stone between two of the thick stems of the bushes then , turning his back on it , he leaned against the fence with my uncle . Both remained silent as they gazed towards the village , listening for sounds of enemy activity , not realising we were only feet away from them . Behind them we stood motionless , leaning slightly forward on the fence . My companion , 'Mick the Soldier' had his eyes firmly fixed on Jerrick's pint ......."


By Frank Doherty .

First published in ' New Hibernia ' magazine , May 1987 , pages 7 , 8 and 9 .
Re-produced here in 11 parts .
(1 of 11.)

It was mid-afternoon , late March . A small , fat man with thick spectacles and darting eyes swayed back from the urinal in The Highwayman Lounge Bar , in Comber , County Down , nodding , smiling , flashing at each lone customer who arrived to relieve his bladder . His breathlessness was due as much to excitement as to his chain-smoking and asthma , for he was playing a game as dangerous as it was 'exciting' : Maurice Oldfield was engaged in what the homosexual fraternity call " cottaging " - and what police call " importuning " .

It was a game which he played regularly ; several times a week he would climb into his official car at Stormont Castle , where he had an apartment and office , and be driven four miles to The Culloden Hotel outside Hollywood and , having dismissed his driver/bodyguard , he would order a taxi to take him to Bangor , five miles away , from there he would pick up another cab to take him on one of his excursions into the Ards Peninsula or East Down .......