31 October-Larry Mullen

Larry Mullen is the drummer for the rock band U2. U2 was formed when Mullen placed a message on the notice board in his school looking for musicians to form a band. Mullen is also involved in other musical projects and has occasionally acted in films.

Laurence Joseph Mullen was born in Artane, Dublin in 1961. He was educated at Scoil Colmcille, Marlborough Street and at Mount Temple Comprehensive School in Dublin. Interested in music from a young age, Mullen began learning to play drums at the age of eight. He was a member of the Dublin marching band, the Artane Boys Band.

In 1976 Mullen placed the message on the notice board in Mount Temple Comprehensive School looking for musicians to form a band. The band, which came to be called U2, eventually consisted of four members: Paul ‘Bono’ Hewson, Dave ‘The Edge’ Evans, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen.

With Mullen as drummer the band became a top international act and to date have released thirteen studio albums. They have sold over 150 million records worldwide and are ranked one on the best-selling bands in the world. With his band mate Adam Clayton, Mullen composed the acclaimed theme music for the movie ‘Mission: Impossible’ starring Tom Cruise. In 1997 the theme music was nominated for the ‘Best Pop Instrumental Performance’ Grammy. To date Larry Mullen has won 22 Grammy Awards with U2.

Larry Mullen, drummer and founding member of the rock band U2, was born in Dublin in the year 1961 On This Day.

Larry Mullen


30 October-Ballinskelligs Bay Tragedy

Ballinskelligs Bay is located on the Iveragh Peninsula in Co Kerry, Ireland. The Bay was the scene of two tragic events which occurred in 1916 causing the deaths of nine people. The people who lost their lives were remembered in 2016 with the erection of a monument in the town of Waterville by Heritage Iveragh.

On August 13th 1916 four local men: Dennis McGillicuddy, Thomas Curran, James O’Connor and Michael O’Shea were bringing a boat from Rinneens to Waterville. The sea was rough during the crossing. At about 3pm the boat capsized resulting in the drowning of the four men.

In November 1916 the Danish Schooner Eliezer was enroute from Canada to Limerick with a cargo of timber. The schooner was shipwrecked in Ballinskelligs Bay. The five crewmen of the Eliezer Anders Nileson, Albert Hansen, Hans Thompson, Hans Lund and Sophus Bastrup were drowned.

The monument to the men who lost their lives is situated on the Waterville promenade. It was unveiled in the presence of local representatives, and representatives from Denmark and Canada. A helicopter from the Marine Rescue Services flew over the scene during the unveiling. The lifeboat service was present in Ballinskelligs Bay.

A monument dedicated to those who lost their lives in Ballinskelligs Bay and people who risk their lives to assist others at sea was unveiled in Waterville, Co Kerry, Ireland, in the year 2016 On This Day.


Monument in Waterville

Photo: Courtesy of Paddy McGillicuddy grandson of Denis McGillicuddy.




30 October-River Barrow

The River Barrow rises at Glenbarrow in the Slieve Bloom mountains in Co Laois, Ireland, flows south through Co Carlow and enters the sea at Waterford Harbour. At 192km long, it is the second longest river in Ireland. The Barrow, which is fully navigable, links with the Grand Canal at Athy making it a major part of Ireland’s inland waterway network.

It was first proposed in 1703 to make the River Barrow navigable. However it was not until 1785 that the first boats were able to travel upstream to the Grand Canal. By then seven locks had been installed but, because it was too shallow, only relatively small boats could navigate the river. The project was not economically viable.

A meeting of subscribers to the Barrow Navigation was held in the Courthouse in Carlow in 1788. A new report in 1789 indicated that the Barrow navigation project could become viable with the building of extra locks and the construction of lateral canals. Eventually twenty three locks were built and some of the existing ones were widened. Five lateral canals with a total length of almost 18km were constructed to bypass the shallow areas. The last lock and bypass canal were built at Clogrennan near Carlow in 1836. Boats carrying up to thirty tons could now navigate the river.

The opening of the Barrow canal had for time a significant impact on the development of towns along its route. Trade increased from 16,000 tons in 1790 to almost 60,000 tons by 1830. However from 1850 onwards competition from the railways led to a decline in traffic and the Barrow Navigation was bought by the Grand Canal Company in 1894. The canal continued to be used for commercial traffic until 1959 when it was closed by Ireland’s Transport Company (Coras Iompar Eirann) in 1959.

A meeting of subscribers to the Barrow Navigation was held in Carlow in the year 1788 On This Day.


Cathole Waterfall near source of River Barrow….On This Day

Photo: Joe Rattigan

River Barrow photo

River Barrow by Real Alan Dalton on 2010-05-09 13:27:12




29 October-Gilbert O’Sullivan

Gilbert O’Sullivan is a singer and songwriter who is a native of Waterford City, Ireland. He is best known for his hit songs such as: ‘Nothing Rhymed’, ‘Alone Again’, ‘Clair’ and ‘Get Down’ recorded during the 1970’s and 1980’s. His songs remain well-loved around the world and the public continue to hold him in high regard.

Gilbert O’Sullivan was born Raymond Edward O’Sullivan in Waterford on December 1st 1946. At the age of seven he moved to Swindon in England with his family. Following graduation from school he attended Swindon College of Art. Interested in music from a young age he performed with several bands while at college.

In 1970 O’Sullivan had his first success with ‘Nothing Rhymed’. He went on to record six number one songs worldwide. Between 1970 and 1980 he had his most successful period. Today O’Sullivan continues to record and perform. He regularly performs in Great Britain, Ireland and abroad.

Gilbert O’Sullivan, singer and songwriter, reached Number One in the British charts with his song Clair in the year 1972 On This Day.

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Gilbert O’Sullivan

Beeld en Geluidwiki





28 October-Chile

Chile is located along South America’s western coast. It is one of the most stable and prosperous countries in South America. In 1818 it declared independence from Spain. It celebrates its National Day each year on September 18th. Bernardo O Higgins and John (Juan) MacKenna played a central role in Chile’s fight for independence from the Spanish Empire.

Bernardo O Higgins whose Sligo born father Ambrose was the governor of Chile became the first head of state of Independent Chile. There is a monument to O Higgins in Merrion Square in Dublin. John (Juan) MacKenna from Monaghan town was Commandant-General of the Chilean Army during the war of independence. There is a bust of General MacKenna in Monaghan County Museum.

Stamps to celebrate the roles of Bernardo O Higgins and Juan MacKenna in Chilean Independence were jointly issued by the Irish Post Office and the Chilean Post Office in the year 2010 On This Day.

Libertador General Bernardo O’Higgins

Merrion Square – Dublin