28 March-Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf was an author who was a native of England. She was a modernist novelist and is considered to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. Woolf is best known as the author of books such as ‘To the Lighthouse’ and ‘A Room of One’s Own’.

Virginia Woolf was born Adeline Virginia Stephen in Kensington, London on January 25th 1882. She was home taught and began writing as a young girl. Her family lived in London but spent the summer in St Ives, Cornwall. Her novel, ‘To the Lighthouse’ was influenced by her memories of Cornwall.

During her career Woolf published a large volume of work including nine novels. She suffered from mental illness during her lifetime. At the age of 59 she took her own life by drowning in the River Ouse near her home in Sussex.

Virginia Woolf died in the year 1941 On This Day.

Virginia Woolf




28 March-Jack B Yeats

Jack B Yeats is one of Ireland’s most famous painters. He was also an Olympic Medal winner and brother of the poet W B Yeats who received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1923. Paintings by Jack B Yeats can be found in the National Gallery of Ireland and in other galleries in Ireland and abroad.

John Butler Yeats was born in London on August 9th 1871. His family had moved to England in 1867 so that his father could further his career as an artist. Jack B Yeats grew up in Sligo with his grandparents and what he saw there was the basis of much of his early work. Everyday life in Ireland is reflected in his most famous paintings.

Following independence, Yeats was the winner of Ireland’s first Olympic Medal. In the Olympic Games in Paris in 1924, his painting ‘The Liffey Swim’ won a silver medal in the Arts and Culture section. Today paintings by Yeats are much in demand. His painting ‘The Wild Ones’ was sold for over €1.5 million in 1999. ‘The Boat Builder’ which Yeats painted in 1913 was sold for over €600,000 in late 2015.

Jack B Yeats died at the age of 85 in the year 1957 On This Day.

Jack Butler Yeats


28 March-Martin Sheridan

Martin Sheridan was a native of Bohola, County Mayo, Ireland. When he died in 1918 at the age of 36 his obituary in the New York Times described him as ‘one of the greatest athletes the United States has ever known’. Sheridan, who was a brother-in-law of General Michael Collins, was educated locally in Mayo. He excelled at various athletic events and played Gaelic Football.

At the age of 18 in 1899 Sheridan emigrated, along with two of his brothers, to the United States. He worked at various jobs including as an athletic instructor in New York. He was selected to represent the US at the 1904 Olympic Games. At the games, which were held in St Louis, Missouri, Sheridan won his first Olympic Gold Medal in the discus.

Martin Sheridan joined the New York Police Department in 1906. In that year he won two Gold Medals (Discus and Shot Put) and three silver medals in other events at the Olympic Games in Athens. The King of Greece, Giorgis I, presented Sheridan with a gold goblet and vaulting pole in recognition of his achievements. The vaulting pole is now on display in Bohola, together with some of his medals and trophies. Medals awarded at the 1906 Games are however not recognised today by the International Olympic Committee.

In the 1908 Olympic Games in London Sheridan won two Gold Medals (Discus) and one Bronze Medal (Long Jump). He came back to Ireland following his success at the 1908 Olympics and visited Bohola. During his time in Ireland he gave exhibitions at Dundalk, Dungarvan, Dublin, and Ballina. Sheridan was inducted into the National Track and Field Hall of Fame in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Martin Sheridan became a highly regarded police officer in New York. He was awarded for his bravery when he risked his life to save a family from a house fire. In his honour the Martin J. Sheridan Award is given annually for bravery to a member of the New York Police Department.

The day before his 37th birthday Martin Sheridan died of pneumonia in St. Vincent’s Hospital in Manhattan, New York during the outbreak of Spanish Flu in 1918. . He is buried in Calvary Cemetery, Queens, New York. On the Celtic cross on his grave is inscribed: ‘Devoted to the Institutions of his Country, and the Ideals and Aspirations of his Race. Athlete. Patriot’.

Martin John Sheridan winner of nine Olympic medals was born Bohola, County Mayo, Ireland, in the year 1881 On This Day.

Martin Sheridan 1910 Mecca card front.jpg

By Mecca cigarette company – www.wingedfist.org, PD-US, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=20889159

Image from page 46 of “New York State fair and agricultural and industrial exposition. Syracuse, September 9 to 14, 1912.” (1912)




28 March-Nell McCafferty

Nell McCafferty is a journalist and playwright who is a native of Derry, Northern Ireland. As a journalist she has worked for a wide range of media outlets. McCafferty has also become well known as a feminist and civil rights campaigner.

Nell McCafferty was born in the Bogside area of Derry City in 1944. Having been admitted to the Queen’s University Belfast, she graduated with a BA Degree and worked briefly as a teacher. In 1969 McCafferty began working as court reporter for the Irish Times. Her column, which was called ‘In the Eyes of the Law’ reported on events in the Bridewell courts in Dublin. The column continued to appear until 1997. She also wrote for several other publications and regularly appeared on radio and television.

Nell McCafferty was born in the year 1944 On This Day.

Nell McCafferty



27 March-Viagra

Viagra is one of the brand names for the drug sildenafil citrate. Sildenafil citrate was developed by Pfizer scientists to treat raised blood pressure and angina pectoris. However it was discovered during testing of the drug that patients developed erections.

As a result of the discovery Viagra was approved for the treatment of erectile dysfunction. The approval was given in 1998 in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration. It was approved for use in other countries at a later stage. Most of the world’s supply of Viagra is produced at the Pfizer facility in Ringaskiddy in Cork, Ireland.

Viagra was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in the year 1998 On This Day.