27 January-Alice in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll was the author of the children’s classics ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ and ‘Through the Looking-Glass’. As well as being an author, he was a mathematician, clergyman and photographer. Carroll was also a poet and he wrote articles for political and philosophical pamphlets.

Lewis Carroll was born Charles Lutwidge Dodgson in Daresbury, Cheshire, England in 1832. He was awarded a first class honours degree in mathematics from Oxford University in 1854. After graduation he remained at Oxford as a lecturer in mathematics. He died at the age of 65 on January 14th 1898.

Carroll became friendly with the family of Henry Liddell who was the Dean of Christ Church Oxford. He enjoyed entertaining the Liddell children, Lorina, Edith, and Alice with fantastic tales of dream worlds. His first children’s book ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ was written at the request of Alice Liddell. It became one of the most popular children’s books in the world.

Lewis Carroll, author of the children’s classics ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ and ‘Through the Looking-Glass’, was born in the year 1832 On This Day.

Alice in Wonderland



26 January-Thomas Charles Wright

Thomas Charles Wright was a native of Drogheda, Co Louth, Ireland. He was the founder of the Ecuadorian naval school and was an officer in Simón Bolívar’s South American army. Wright was also the founder and first commander-in-chief of the Ecuadorian navy. It is reported that a monument to Wright will be unveiled in Drogheda in 2018.

Thomas Charles Wright was born in Queensboro, Drogheda, Co Louth in 1799. At the age of eleven he began training at the naval college in Portsmouth, England. He later served in the British navy during the 1812 war with the United States. He returned to Drogheda in 1817 and decided to join the army of Simon Bolivar who at the time was fighting to free South America from Spanish rule.

Wright served with distinction in Bolivar’s army and was appointed Commodore of the Pacific squadron. Spanish rule ended in 1826 and Wright played a major role in establishing the Republic of Ecuador. He settled in the port city of Guayaquil in 1826 where he founded the Ecuadorian naval school. Wright died in Guayaquil on December 10th 1835. The naval school which he founded continues to function to this day.

Thomas Charles Wright, founder of the Ecuadorian naval school and an officer in Simón Bolívar’s South American army, was born Drogheda, Co Louth in the year 1799 On This Day.



24 January-Boy Scouts

Scouting is a global movement for children aged usually between 10 and 18 years. It is run on the principles laid down by Lord Baden-Powell. Through a programme of structured activities and shared experiences Scouting aims to support the physical, mental and spiritual development of young people. Scouts become involved in activities including camping, woodcraft, first aid, hiking, backpacking and sports.

The Boy Scout Movement was founded in England by Robert Baden-Powell in 1908. A new organization called Girl Guides was created for girls in 1910. Both organisations quickly spread to other countries. Today in most countries, there is a single organization for boys and girls. In Ireland the Scouting Movement is a non-political all-island organisation which has over 50,000 members. It is open to all young people regardless of gender, race, creed, sexual orientation or spiritual belief.

The first Boy Scout troop was organised by Robert Baden-Powell in the year 1908 On This Day.

Robert Baden-Powell (1857-1941)

Boy Scout Awards

John Gormley visits Dundalk boy scouts




22 January-Byron

Lord Byron was a poet, satirist and politician who was a native of England. Widely regarded as one of the greatest poets in the English language he was one of the leading figures of the Romantic Movement. Byron was as well known for his lavish lifestyle and numerous love affairs as he was for his poetry.

George Gordon Byron, the 6th Baron Byron was born in London in 1788. He was educated at Harrow school in London. He entered Trinity College, Cambridge in 1804 where he spent three years. Byron was a prolific writer. The publication of Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage in 1812 made him a celebrity. His magnum opus was the satiric poem ‘Don Juan’ which was unfinished at the time of his death in 1824.

Due to debts and various scandals Byron moved abroad in 1816. He lived in several parts of Europe for the remainder of his life. He travelled widely and became involved in the Greek War of Independence. In Greece Lord Byron is regarded as a national hero. He died at the age of 36 at Missolonghi in western Greece on April 19th 1824.

Thomas Moore, Ireland’s National Bard, was a very close friend and was the biographer of Lord Byron. Byron entrusted his memoirs to Moore for publication after his death. However, Moore was persuaded by Byron’s family to destroy them. Moore later celebrated Byron’s life by editing and publishing his letters and journals.

Lord Byron, poet, satirist and politician, was born in London in the year 1788 On This Day.

Byron 1813 by Phillips.jpg

Thomas Phillips

Lord Byron







21 January-Concorde

Concorde is supersonic passenger airplane which operated from 1976 to 2003. It was capable of flying at over twice the speed of sound (over 2,100kph). Concorde had seating for 100 passengers and could cross the Atlantic in less than half the time of other aircraft.

Concorde was jointly developed and built by aircraft manufacturers in Great Britain and France. The two countries signed a treaty establishing the project on November 29th 1962. The first development Concorde was unveiled in Toulouse on December 11th 1967. Nineteen other Concorde were built.

Air France, and British Airways purchased the Concorde aircraft. Because of the sonic boom supersonic flight was limited to ocean crossing. Commercial flights began from London and Paris in 1976 and continued for 27 years. The aircraft was retired in 2003.

Concorde made its first commercial flight from London to Bahrain in the year 1976 On This Day.



Concorde – Interior