24 April-Nurse Margaret Kehoe

Nurse Margaret Kehoe was a native of Orchard, Leighlinbridge, Co Carlow, Ireland. She was shot dead at the South Dublin Union (now St James Hospital) on Easter Monday 1916. She was the first civilian casualty of the Easter Rising of 1916. At the time of her death Nurse Kehoe had been working at the hospital for almost twenty years.

Margaret Kehoe was born on March 17th 1867. Her father Patrick was the coroner of Co Carlow. Her mother Marion died when Margaret was just nine years old. Margaret was the grandniece of Captain Myles Kehoe who served in the Papal wars in Italy. He also served in both the Civil war and the Indian wars in the United States. Captain Myles Keogh died at the Battle of the Little Bighorn during the Great Sioux War of 1876.

Margaret Kehoe began working as a nurse at the South Dublin Union in 1896. The South Dublin Union was a complex of hospitals and workhouses. When the hospital was commandeered by the volunteers on April 24th 1916 there were 3,282 people including patients, doctors, nurses and ancillary staff on the site. The volunteers established their headquarters in the Nurses Home. They were led by Éamonn Ceannt and Officers Cathal Brugha, Con Colbert and W T Cosgrave. Cosgrave would later become Taoiseach. The patients and staff were not evacuated during the fighting. In order to dislodge the rebels, the British Army attacked the Union on the afternoon of Monday April 24th. The situation for staff and patients became perilous and many people lost their lives.

A Mr James Cribbin who was a native of Prosperous, Co Kildare had been employed as ‘Diet Clerk’ at the hospital for 30 years. In an interview with the Kildare Observer Cribbin stated: ‘I was in charge of the place on Easter Monday morning, the Master and the Assistant Master having gone to the races at Fairyhouse. The Sinn Feiners – about a hundred in all – entered and took possession of the buildings’. He went on to say that they helped themselves to supplies of food from the stores.

When talking about the casualties Cribbin described Nurse Kehoe as a ‘popular, capable and conscientious officer. She opened a door to cross a passage in search of one of her patients when she dropped with a bullet through her heart’. Along with others who died in the fighting Nurse Kehoe was buried in the grounds of the hospital. Her remains were later exhumed and reinterred in Ballinabranna cemetery, Leighlinbridge, Co Carlow.

Nurse Margaret Kehoe, a native of Co Carlow, became the first civilian casualty of the Easter Rising when she was shot dead whilst on duty in the year 1916 On This Day.





15 September-Tanks

Tanks were first used in combat during World War I. Called ‘Landships’ the tanks travelled at a top speed of 4mph. They were introduced as one the methods to break the stalemate of trench warfare.

The first tanks used in battle were mechanically unreliable and many broke down. Inside the tank the crew had to endure an unpleasant environment. Carbon monoxide levels were high and temperatures could reach up to 50 degrees Celsius. Only nine of the forty tanks shipped to France during the Battle of the Somme reached the German lines.

Tanks first appeared at the Battle of Flers-Courcelette in the year 1916 On This Day.

Tank by sarae on 2006-03-14 05:05:20

Tank by kevin dooley on 2008-07-24 10:09:01

13 September-Roald Dahl

Roald Dahl, best known as the author of children’s books was a native of Wales. His books which include novels, short stories and poetry have sold millions of copies worldwide. Dahl served as a fighter pilot with the Royal Airforce during World War II.

Roald Dahl was born Llandaff, Cardiff, Wales in 1916. Having completed his second level education he began working for the Shell Oil Company in East Africa. When World War II broke out he joined the Royal Airforce. He sustained serious injuries in a crash landing in Libya but later served as a fighter pilot in Greece and Syria.

In 1942 Dahl was appointed assistant air attaché in Washington DC. There he met the novelist CS Forester who encouraged him to write about his experiences as a fighter pilot. Having written for a time for adult readers, Dahl began writing books for children. His first children’s book, James and the Giant Peach which was published in 1961, was a popular success.

Dahl went on to write hugely successful books such as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Fantastic Mr Fox and Matilda. Several of his books have been made into movies, including BFG which was released as a film in 2016. Roald Dahl died at a the age of 74 on November 23rd 1990.

Roald Dahl was born in the year 1916 On This Day.

Roald Dahl timeline by alecea on 2009-01-24 16:50:45

Roald Dahl – 365/53 by Lizard10979 on 2012-02-15 22:40:15

23 July-Thomas MacDonald Patterson

Thomas MacDonald Patterson, who was a native of Carlow, Ireland, was elected in 1877 to serve as a United States Congressman for the state of Colorado. He was later elected to serve as Senator for the same state. Patterson was also a lawyer and newspaper publisher.

Thomas MacDonald Patterson was born in Carlow on November 4th 1839. His father James was a watch repairer. In 1848 when Thomas was nine years old James Patterson and his wife Margaret moved to New York with their daughter and two sons. The Patterson family lived for a time on Long Island before moving to Crawfordsville, Indiana in 1853 where James began a business repairing watches.

At the age of fourteen Thomas Patterson began working as a printer, at first in Crawfordsville but later in Indianapolis. In April 1861 he enlisted with his brother James to serve in the Union Army at the start of the American Civil War. When he had completed service he studied law and passed the bar examination in 1870.

In 1872 Patterson moved to Denver, Colorado where he practiced as a lawyer. He was appointed City attorney of Denver in 1873 and 1874. At that time Colorado was not yet a state of the Union. Patterson, having become involved politics, was elected delegate for the Colorado Territory in 1875. When the Territory became a State he served as Congressman for Colorado from 1877 to 1879. After his time as a Congressman, Patterson returned to the practice of the law. In 1890 he purchased the Rocky Mountain News which was then a daily newspaper and the oldest in Colorado.

Patterson later returned to politics. He was elected to the United States Senate and served there from 1901 to 1907. He did not stand for re-election as a senator but stood twice for election as Governor of the State of Colorado. He was unsuccessful on both occasions. Patterson continued to practice law and publish the Rocky Mountain News until his death.

Thomas Macdonald Patterson, American politician, lawyer and publisher who was a native of Carlow, Ireland died in Denver, Colorado, at the age of 76, in the year 1916 On This Day.

Senator Thomas M Patterson photo

Thomas MacDonald Patterson

Image from page 202

01 July-Aubrey Cecil White-Battle of the Somme

Aubrey Cecil White from Gowran Co Kilkenny, Ireland was killed on the first morning of the battle of the Somme in 1916 during World War 1. Over 19,000 soldiers of the British Army, thousands of whom were Irish, died that first morning.

Aubrey Cecil White was born at Gowran House in the village of Gowran on March 24th 1896. His father, Richard, was an agent for the Annaly Estate. At the age of nine in 1905 Aubrey was sent to school Castle Park in Dalkey Co Dublin. He left Castle Park in 1911 and went to Trent College in Nottingham. Three years later in 1914 he joined the 8th Battalion, York and Lancaster Regiment.

In 1915, White having been commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant was sent with his battalion to France. By May 1916 the battalion were stationed in the trenches near the river Somme in Northern France. For almost a week before the battle began the German lines had been bombarded by French and British artillery. In the event the bombardment had little effect as the attacking armies were to find out to their cost.

The Battalion diary (WO 95/2188NA) for the day of the attack reads: ‘The attack was timed for 7.30am. The first wave left our trenches in perfect order and to time, and was at once met by exceptionally heavy fire from front and both flanks. Most of the men were killed or wounded. The Battalion as it went over numbered 680 non-commissioned officers and men and 23 officers; of the former only 68 returned. All the officers were casualties, eighteen being killed and five wounded’

Aubrey Cecil White was one of those killed in action. He was only 20 years old. He is buried in Lonsdale Cemetery, Authuille Somme, France. He is commemorated in Gowran Church and in St Canice’s Cathedral in Kilkenny.

Aubrey Cecil White was killed at the Battle of the Somme in the year 1916 On This Day

Somme graveyard photo

Photo by BiblioArchives / LibraryArchives