08 April-Jonah Barrington

Jonah Barrington was a native of Co Laois, Ireland. He was a Judge and a Member of the Parliament of Ireland in Dublin until it’s dissolution in 1800. He was opposed to, and voted against the Act of Union. His publications include ‘Historic Memoirs of Ireland’ and ‘The Rise and Fall of the Irish Nation’

Jonah Barrington was born in the townland of Knapton near the town of Abbeyleix, Co Laois in 1757. He was the fourth child of a family of a reported sixteen children. In 1773 he entered Trinity College Dublin but left without being awarded a degree. Barrington was a member of the Irish Volunteers. He supported the Irish Patriot Party which succeeded in gaining legislative independence for Ireland in 1782.

In 1798 Barrington was appointed an Admiralty court judge. He was awarded a knighthood in 1807 but moved to France in 1815 to escape his creditors. In 1830 he became the only judge ever to be removed from his post by both houses of Parliament. His removal from office was a consequence of his misappropriation of public monies.

Jonah Barrington, a native of Co Laois, Ireland, who was a Judge and a Member of the Parliament of Ireland in Dublin until it’s dissolution in 1800, died in Versailles, France in the year 1834 On This Day.

Image taken from page 8 of ‘[Historic Memoirs of Ireland

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Jonah Barrington (Wikimedia Commons)







07 April-Kellogg’s

The Kellogg Company is a multinational food-manufacturing company which has its headquarters in Battle Creek, Michigan in the United States. Known as Kellogg’s, it was founded by Will Keith Kellogg on February 19th 1906. Producing cereals and convenience foods, Kellogg’s has manufacturing facilities in 18 countries around the world. Its largest factory is based in Manchester, England.

Will Keith Kellogg was born in Battle Creek, Michigan in 1860. He established the Kellogg Company while working at the Battle Creek Sanitarium with his brother John Harvey Kellogg who was a medical doctor. The Sanitarium advocated the consumption of cereal products which it regarded as health foods. Initially the company manufactured only toasted cornflakes. As time went on other products were produced.

Will Keith Kellogg, founder of the multinational food-manufacturing company Kellogg’s was born in the year 1860 On This Day.

Kellogg’s Corn Flakes




06 April-Merle Haggard

Merle Haggard was a country singer, songwriter and musician who was a native of the USA. His genres included country, outlaw country and what is known as the Bakersfield sound. The recipient of many awards and honours, Haggard became one of the best-known artists in country music.

Merle Ronald Haggard was born in Oildale, California in 1937. The death of his father when he was eight years old had a major impact on his life. He began learning to play the guitar at the age of 12, but he had a troubled youth and served time in San Quentin prison. A performance by Johnny Cash in San Quentin in 1959 helped inspire Haggard to pursue a career in music.

In 1965, ‘My Friends Are Gonna Be Strangers’ became Haggard’s first American top-10 hit. He went on to have 38 No. 1 hits. With songs such as ‘Sing Me Back Home’ and ‘Okie from Muskogee’ he became a country music legend. During his career Haggard successfully collaborated with many other artists. His numerous awards included the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in 1994 and an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts from the California State University in 2013.

Merle Haggard, country singer, songwriter and musician was born in the year 1937 On This Day.

Merle Haggard




05 April-Joseph Lister

Joseph Lister was a surgeon and scientist who was a native of England. In the late 1800’s he introduced the use of carbolic acid as an antiseptic during surgery. Carbolic acid, now known as phenol is a germ-killing substance. Lister also pioneered new principles of cleanliness in surgical practice. He is widely regarded as the ‘The Father of Modern Surgery’.

Joseph Lister was born in West Ham, Essex in 1827. Having been awarded a Bachelor of Medicine he entered the Royal College of Surgeons in 1853. In 1854 he began working as a surgeon in Edinburgh Royal Infirmary in Scotland. At the time a surgeon was not required wash hands before seeing a patient. Surgery was carried out under unsanitary conditions.

Lister studied the work which French scientist Louis Pasteur had carried out on the three methods for the elimination of micro-organisms. He decided to use chemicals, Pasteur’s third option. Lister used dressings soaked in carbolic acid to dress wounds. This vastly reduced the rate of infection. He also introduced hand washing and the sterilising of surgical instruments with carbolic acid.

Joseph Lister, a surgeon who pioneered the idea of using antiseptics during surgery and who is regarded as ‘The Father of Modern Surgery’ was born in the year 1827 On This Day.

Joseph Lister 1827 – 1912




04 April-Mother and Child Scheme

The ‘Mother and Child Scheme’ was a plan to provide free medical care for all expectant mothers and their children up to the age of 16 in Ireland in the early 1950’s. The attempted introduction of the plan caused a major political crisis. The crisis involved the Government, the Roman Catholic Church and the medical profession.

Attempts to reform the Irish healthcare system began after World War II. The high infant mortality rate in Ireland led to the Mother and Child Service being proposed by Health Minister Dr Noel Browne in 1950. It became known as the ‘Mother and Child Scheme’ and was met with strong opposition on a number of fronts.

The plan was opposed by the medical profession who felt it would reduce doctors’ income and would lead to the ‘socialisation of medicine’. The Roman Catholic Church opposed the plan on the basis that it could lead to the introduction of birth control and abortion. A large number of politicians opposed the plan for several reasons, including that it put them at odds with the Catholic Church and that the state would have to pay for the scheme.

The crisis led to the resignation of Minister Noel Browne on April 11th 1951 and eventually the fall of the Government the following June. Following the election of a new Government a different version of the Scheme broadly acceptable to the Church and the medical profession was introduced in 1953. The crisis re-enforced the belief in some areas that ‘Home Rule was Rome Rule’.

The Roman Catholic Church condemned the proposal by the Irish Government to introduce the ‘Mother and Child Scheme’ in the year 1951 On This Day.