05 August-Michael Banim

Michael Banim writer and Kilkenny businessman was brother of the author John Banim. He collaborated with his brother on several writing projects but was the principal author of works such as The Croppy. He was Postmaster of Kilkenny for many years and served a term as Mayor of Kilkenny City. Michael Banim was born in Kilkenny in 1796 On This Day

The Croppy photo

Photo by Internet Archive Book Images

 

The Croppy photo

Photo by Internet Archive Book Images

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04 August-Carlow Railway Station

Carlow Railway Station in the southeast of Ireland, which has become increasingly important for commuters, is on the Dublin to Waterford intercity route. It has served the people of Carlow for the past 169 years and in June 2013 was voted best station in Leinster. 1,274 passengers either boarded or alighted from a train at Carlow Railway Station on Rail Census day in 2013 (Boarding: 657. Alighting: 617. National Transport Authority).

The first train journey in Ireland was made on the Dublin to Dún Laoghaire (Kingstown) railway line on October 9th 1834. The line was built by Carlow engineer William Dargan who would eventually build over 1300km of railway all over Ireland. In the following decades the construction of railways expanded rapidly. In 1845 construction began on the line from Dublin to Cork. A branch from this line was built to Carlow. The lines were constructed by William Dargan. The railway station at Carlow was designed by Dundalk engineer John Benjamin Macneill. The station, which was originally designed as a terminus, now has two platforms. The buildings are constructed of yellow brick and have offices and waiting areas. The station was closed for goods traffic on June 9th 1976.

During the 19th century horse racing was held in Carlow at Ballybar which is about 9km south of Carlow town. The opening of Carlow railway station was brought forward to accommodate racegoers for the 1846 meeting. When race meetings were held in the following years special trains, carrying both hoses and spectators were organised for the races.

A signaller error caused a minor accident at Carlow rail station at 7.30am on November 24th 1900. On that occasion the southbound train from Kildare to Kilkenny was stopped at the station. The northbound train from Kilkenny to Kildare was misrouted as it came into Carlow station resulting in a head on collision. The driver of the northbound train had succeeded in slowing his train to about 10km/h. there were no fatalities but seven passengers complained of minor injuries.

There was great excitement when the first train arrived at the newly opened railway station in Carlow town in the year 1846 On This Day.

IMG_20150803_202214

Carlow Railway Station

By OTD.ie

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03 August-Jim Gibbons

Jim Gibbons, who was a native of Co Kilkenny, Ireland served as a TD (Teachta Dála) for the Carlow-Kilkenny constituency for 25 years. He was first elected to Dáil Éireann in 1957. During his time as a TD Jim Gibbons, who was a member of the Fianna Fáil Party, served as a Government Minister on two occasions.

James Gibbons was born in Kilkenny in 1924. He was educated at the at St Kieran’s College Kilkenny before entering University College Dublin to study medicine. He left after two years to take up farming in Kilkenny and became involved in politics as a member of the Fianna Fáil Party. Gibbons was elected to Kilkenny County Council in 1954.

In the 1957 General Election Jim Gibbons was first elected to Dáil Éireann for the Carlow-Kilkenny constituency. With the exception of a brief period in 1981, he served as TD for the constituency until he retired in 1982. During his time as a TD he was Minister of State at the Department of Finance. He was also appointed to the serve in Government as Minister for Defence and later as Minister for Agriculture. He died at the age of 73 on December 20th 1997.

Jim Gibbons who served as TD (Teachta Dála) for the Constituency of Carlow-Kilkenny was born in Bonnesrath near Kilkenny City in the year 1924 On This Day

1977 Victory Dinner for Fianna Fail by missfitzphotos on 2001-02-18 03:37:17

Kilkenny City by SowersPics on 2010-07-15 08:06:10

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29 July-Dr Robert Cane (1807-1858) Kilkenny City

Dr Robert Cane was a native of Kilkenny, Ireland. He studied medicine and established a successful practice in Kilkenny City. Cane became involved in politics and was a supporter of the Repeal Association. Though not involved in the Rebellion of 1848 he was imprisoned for a lengthy period under the suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act. Cane was twice elected as Mayor of Kilkenny.

Dr Robert Cane was born in Kilkenny in 1807. He was educated locally and then worked for a time as an assistant to a pharmacist. He later went on to study medicine at Trinity College Dublin and at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. During his time at Trinity College, Cane became involved in student politics and attended meetings about national issues of the day. He returned to Kilkenny to give medical assistance during the cholera epidemic of 1832. Robert Cane later moved to Edinburgh where he was awarded his MD at Edinburgh Medical School in 1836.

Following graduation from Edinburgh, Cane returned to Kilkenny where he set up a practice in the city. He became involved in national affairs and in local politics in Kilkenny where he was friendly with the writer John Banim. He also joined Daniel O’Connell’s Repeal Association. In 1840 he hosted a banquet for Daniel O’Connell during a visit by the Liberator to the city. Robert Cane was elected Mayor of Kilkenny in 1844.

William Smith O’Brien founded the Irish Confederation in 1847 when he and others withdrew from the Repeal Association. Robert Cane joined the Confederation, however his views, particularly on the use of violence, were at variance with the Confederation and he took no part in the Rising of 1848. Despite this he was arrested and imprisoned. The Rising had led to the suspension of Habeas Corpus and resulted in Cane being imprisoned for a lengthy period. Following his release he was again elected mayor of Kilkenny. On February 19th 1849 he was one of group of people who met to establish an Archaeological Society for the ‘County and City of Kilkenny and surrounding districts’. He was eventually elected chairman of the organisation on April 3rd 1849.

Dr Cane founded the Celtic Union in Kilkenny in 1853. It was a literary society with a strong political bias and intended to publish material relating to Irish history. The Union produced a magazine called ‘The Celt’ and Cane acted as editor. Dr Cane died of consumption on August 16th 1858. In 1859 a series of articles entitled ‘History of the Williamite and Jacobite Wars of Ireland from their origin to the capture of Athlone’, which Cane had written, were published by the Celtic Union.

Dr Robert Cane was arrested and imprisoned following the Young Irelander Rebellion in the year 1848 On This Day.

The Tholsel, Kilkenny by National Library of Ireland on The Commons on 1870-01-01 00:00:00

Court House, Kilkenny, 1908 by National Library of Ireland on The Commons on 1908-07-01 00:00:00

High Street Fashion by National Library of Ireland on The Commons on 1955-01-01 00:00:00

 

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28 July-Irish Army service in the Congo

Two Irish Army Infantry Battalions which included soldiers from Carlow and Kilkenny were deployed to the Congo to serve with the United Nations forces in 1960. It was the first large scale overseas mission undertaken by Irish troops since the establishment of the state in 1922. However it was not the first service overseas by Irish Army personnel with the United Nations. The first United Nations mission in which members of the Irish Army were involved began on June 27th 1958. On that occasion Lieutenant Colonel Justin MacCarthy and a group of 50 other officers served with the United Nations Observer Group in the Lebanon.

On June 30th 1960 the Belgian Congo became an independent republic. Independence was quickly followed by civil unrest. Within a week a mutiny broke out in the army and this was followed by the secession of two areas of the country, Katanga and South Kasai. An appeal was made by the Congolese Government to the United Nations to help restore order and preserve the territorial integrity of the country. The appeal was successful and on July 13th Ireland was requested to provide troops for the ONUC (Opération des Nations unies au Congo) mission.

Legislation enabling the mission to take place was passed by Dáil Eireann. As a result Ireland became one of thirty countries from around the world to provide soldiers for the mission. Just over two weeks later the 635-strong 32nd Infantry Battalion departed for the Congo. A month later the Irish contingent was brought to 1,000 troops with the arrival of the 33 Infantry Battalion. The Irish contingent was further boosted when an Armoured Car Group began operations in the Congo on January 15th 1961. They were using armoured cars which had been manufactured by Messers. Thompson & Son Limited, Hanover Works, Carlow.

The ONUC mission in the Congo lasted from 1960 to 1964 during which time 6,000 Irish soldiers served in the Congo. During that time twenty six Irish soldiers lost their lives. In one engagement called the ‘Niemba Ambush’ nine Irish soldiers, including Lt. Kevin Gleeson and Private Michael McGuinn of Carlow, were killed. Since their deployment in the Congo, members of the Irish Defence Forces have continuously served on UN missions in various parts of the world.

Irish Defence Forces began service with the United Nations in the Congo in the year 1960 On This Day.

ONUCsmall1 by Irish Defence Forces on 2009-11-16 17:14:15

ONUCsmall2 by Irish Defence Forces on 2008-06-24 15:41:17

ONUC photo

34th Battalion ONUC

Photo by Irish Defence Forces

 

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