15 December-Buck Whaley Castletown Castle

Castletown Castle is located on the Bunclody road about 5km to the south east of Carlow town, Ireland. The castle, which has been extended and upgraded down the centuries, incorporates the fabric of a tower house dating from 1550. Today it is the home of the Monahan family but has been owned at various times by Kavanaghs, Bagenals and the Earl of Kildare. During the 1780’s Thomas ‘Buck’ Whaley an MP in the Irish Parliament and a gambler was the owner of the castle.

Thomas ‘Buck’ Whaley was born at 86 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin in December 1766. 86 St Stephen’s Green became Newman House in 1854 when The Catholic University of Ireland was established there. The Catholic University of Ireland was the precursor of University College Dublin. Whaley was educated in Dublin until the age of sixteen. He was then sent to Paris to continue his education. He became involved in gambling and built up large debts. He returned to Ireland and in 1784 was elected to serve in the Irish House of Commons for Newcastle Co Dublin.

In 1788 Whaley, who was a member of the Hellfire Club, made a wager for £15,000 that he would travel to Jerusalem, play handball against its walls and return in less than a year. He succeeded in the venture, leaving Dublin in October 1788 and returning in summer 1789. As a result he was sometimes referred to as Jerusalem Whaley.

Whaley continued to gamble. In the early 1790’s, having sold most of his estate to pay off his debts, he moved to the Isle of Man. He wrote his memoirs but these were not published until 1906. He returned to Ireland in 1798 and was elected MP for Enniscorthy. During the debates on the Act of Union he is reported to have offered his vote to the highest bidder. Whaley died on November 2nd 1800 at the age of 34 in Knutsford, Cheshire while travelling to London.

Thomas ‘Buck’ Whaley, gambler, politician and onetime owner of Castletown Castle in Carlow, Ireland was born in the year 1766 On This Day.

Buck Whaley’s – Leeson street by infomatique on 2009-04-11 15:28:36

Castletown Castle photo

Castletown, Isle of Man by ahisgett on 2007-10-24 15:01:49

12 September-First Long-distance Radio Transmission

Guglielmo Marconi was a Nobel Prize-winning physicist who was a native of Italy. His father Giuseppe was from Bologna, Italy. His mother was Annie Jameson from Daphne Castle, Co Wexford, Ireland. Marconi’s great grandfather was John Jameson, founder of Irish whiskey distillers Jameson & Sons. Through his own research and using research carried out by others Marconi developed the first effective system of radio communication.

On December 12th 1901 Marconi succeeded in sending the first wireless signal across the Atlantic to America. He routed the signal through Marconi House, Rosslare, Co Wexford and Clifden in Co Galway. The signal was received 3,500km (2,200 Miles) in Newfoundland.

Marconi founded the Marconi Telephone Company and became a successful businessman. He continued to experiment with radio technology. In 1907, having built high-powered radio transmission stations on both sides of the Atlantic, he established regular transatlantic transmissions. Marconi died in Rome on July 20th 1937.

Routing signal through Rosslare, Co Wexford and Clifden, Co Galway, Marconi succeeded in sending the first wireless signal across the Atlantic in the year 1901 On This Day.

30 November-South Leinster Way

South Leinster Way is one of many walking trails in Ireland. It begins in Kildavin, Co Carlow and stretches for 104km (65 miles) to Carrick-on-Suir in Co Tipperary. At Carrick-on-Suir the trail known as the east Munster Way begins. Both walking trails form part of Ireland’s 4,000km waymarked trails the first of which, the Wicklow Way, was opened in 1982.

From Kildavin in Co Carlow the South Leinster Way passes through Borris in Co Carlow, Graiguenamanagh and Inistigoe Co Kilkenny and on to Carrick-on-Suir in Co Tipperary. The terrain along the route varies between mountain trails and riverside walks. These include walks on Mount Leinster in the Blackstairs Mountains in Co Carlow and Mount Brandon near Graiguenamanagh in Co Kilkenny together with a riverside walk along the towpath of the River Barrow.

This National Waymarked Trail has no significant climbs and takes about 5 days to complete. Overnight accommodation is available along the route in picturesque country towns such as Borris, Inistioge and Griaiuenamanagh. Because of Ireland’s temperate climate the walking trails can be enjoyed all year round.

South Leinster Way, a National Waymarked Trail in the south east of Ireland, was officially opened in the year 1985 On This Day.



Finea 5KM Road Race – March 2014 by Peter Mooney on 2014-03-23 10:58:17

Mount Leinster photo

View from Mt Leinster

Photo by stephenhanafin


29 November-George Harrison

George Harrison was a guitarist, singer, songwriter and film producer. He was the lead guitarist of the world famous rock group the Beatles. The band was one of the most commercially successful in music history.

George Harrison was born in Liverpool, England, on February 25th 1943. Interested in music from a young age he was given his first guitar at age 14 by his father. He learned to play the guitar and formed his own band called the Rebels.

Harrison met Paul McCartney on the school bus and later joined McCartney and John Lennon as a member of the Quarrymen. The Quarrymen would eventually become the Beatles in August 1960 and would be joined by Ringo Starr. The Beatles disbanded in 1970 and Harrison pursued a successful solo career. He also established a movie production company.

George Harrison, lead guitarist of the world famous rock group the Beatles, died at the age of 58 in Los Angeles, California in the year 2001 On This Day.

george harrison the quiet one, by badgreeb RECORDS – art -photos on 2012-03-23 01:30:20


28 November-Sonia O’Sullivan

Sonia O’Sullivan, who is a native of Co Cork, is one of Ireland’s most successful athletes. She represented Ireland at four Olympic Games, winning an Olympic Silver Medal on September 25th 2000 in Sydney. O’Sullivan also won European Gold and World Gold Medals. She was Chef De Mission for the Irish team at the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

Sonia “Fran” O’Sullivan was born in Cobh, Co Cork in November 1969. She was educated at Cobh Vocational School and began her athletic career with Ballymore Running Club in the town of Cobh. In 1988 O’Sullivan was awarded a scholarship to Villanova University in Philadelphia, USA. She graduated from there with a degree in Accounting in 1992.

Prior to winning her Olympic Medal, Sonia O’Sullivan had a long list of successes to her credit. These included:

•Three World Championship Gold Medals

•Three European Championship Gold Medals

•Four World Records

Sonia O’Sullivan, one of Ireland’s most successful athletes, was born in the year 1969 On This Day.

January 1, 1992 by National Library of Ireland on The Commons on 1992-01-01 13:09:18

The Sydney Olympics Flame by Richard_F on 2004-08-15 15:07:43