This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at

Asdee Drama, Mallow, Co, Cork, O’Connell’s Avenue youngsters and Good News for Ballylongford

Young Buck in The National Park

Photo: Chris Grayson


In 1960 Asdee was on a Winning Streak with its New Play

It all started when Josie McElligott sent me this photo with a request for help with the names. Dave O’Sullivan who, incidentally, has a keen interest in drama and is no stranger to All Ireland success, did a spot of research  in the newspapers and we learned a thing or two about drama in Asdee.

We didn’t get the names of the folk in this photo but I’m sure reading these newspaper accounts and the accompanying photos, local people will be able to put names to faces.

The people in the photograph were the cast of The Birthright by T.C. Murray. Below are the cast members. If anyone has a programme from 1959 we’ll find the rest of the names.

The Latter days are Cold was a groundbreaking play. It came at the height of drama success in North Kerry with John. B. Keane’s Sive sweeping the boards at local and national drama festivals.


O’Connell’s Avenue in the 1950s

Noel Roche shared this one on Facebook.


Good News for Ballylongford

This is a screen shot so unfortunately I cant make it any bigger.


A Church Visit in Mallow

Here are a few photos from my recent visit to Mallow


Moonlighting in Listowel in 1887

Desperate Encounter and Shooting of Two Policemen. —
A desperate encounter, resulting in two policemen being wounded, took place
last night near the Ennismore Station, on the Limerick and Kerry Railway, at
the house of a respectable farmer named M. H. His farm is situate on the
townland of Killacrim, and is about three miles from Listowel.
The locality has been very quiet until recently, but for the last fort-night houses
have been raided for arms, with serious injury to a farmer’s daughter in one
case, her arm having been broken by one of the Moonlighters, who fired through
the door of her father’s house, after having got up his gun. The encounter last
night occurred at half-past ten o’clock. Through some reason or another the
police expected that the houses in which there were guns would be visited, and
accordingly they had placed men in the vicinity of the houses in that
locality. A patrol, consisting of head-constable Concannon and constables Kelly
and Waters, in accordance with this arrangement, were in ambush outside
Halloran’s house. They were not there for any great length of time when they
noticed a body of men coming into the yard, and going to the back of the house.
They noticed between them and the white walls of the house that the men were
armed, and immediately they suspected the nature of their visit. The place
where the police were ambushed was at the north or back of the house, while the
Moon- lighters entered the yard by a passage leading into it from the west. The
front of the house faces south, and the stable, which is built at right angles to the
house, and is attached to it, faces the yard and passage by which the Moonlighter
approached. The entrance to the kitchen is at the back of the house in the angle
formed by itself and the stable. The party then, after coming into the yard, came
-along by the front of the stable, and turned round into the kitchen. At this time
the police were about fifty yards to the north of an avenue leading up to the yard
of the house. Seeing the men, as described, turning the corner of the house, the
police approached, and as they did so saw some of the men returning into the
yard, where two other men had been left apparently as sentinels.
When the police came sufficiently close to the groups they called on them to
surrender in the Queen’s name. No reply was given, but the moonlighters made
off in an opposite direction. The police then fired three shots at them, and rushed
forward to arrest them. Constable Kelly, who was in advance of the others,
succeeded in capturing one of the men. They struggled for a time, but the Head
Constable and the other policemen having come to his aid, he secured his man.
This took place in the front of the stable, and he was taking back his prisoner to
the stable when he noticed a man lying on the ground. Having also noticed that
he had something in his hand, he laid hold of him. The first man then gave a
jerk, and escaped, but Kelly held on to the second man, and with the assistance
of his confreres, who had returned from pursuit of the other moonlighters, they
took the man into the stable, where they found he was armed with a double-barrelled gun, 

which was loaded and capped. They handcuffed the prisoner, and
left him in charge of Constable Waters in the stable, after which the head
constable and Constable Kelly came out into the yard again.
Then fresh and more serious work began. It appears at the time the police
came up, half the Moonlighters were in the house, and one of their number on
guard, seeing the police approach, passed the word. Those in the house then
trooped out, and fell into a body in a field to the east of the house. While the
first struggle in the yard was going on they came around by a field to a low stone
wall which bounds the yard. Then, when they saw the two policemen coming out
of the stable they fired a volley at them. At the same time another volley was
fired from behind the fence of an orchard, wounding the Head-constable slightly
and wounding Kelly rather seriously. The police, fired at from two directions,
returned the fire towards the places from whence the shots came. They saw from
this that the Moonlighters were divided into two different bodies, and that each
occupied a safe position behind ditches and walls. The firing between the two
parties lasted ten or fifteen minutes, there being great determination shown on
both sides, but after being wounded the police, who were some yards from the
stable door, gradually retired, in order to defend the place if an attempt to rescue
the prisoner were made. As they entered the door two shots were fired at them
from immediately opposite, and the contents of the shots lodged in the door
posts. The shots also hit a chest inside the door, so that the police had a very
narrow escape. — Irish Times, March 14th, 1887.


Kerry Trees, Asdee Drama and John B. Keane Sculpture unveiling


Colohans of Church Street, Archways and Ballylongford

1 Comment

  1. Brianne O'Sullivan

    My grandma is Frances Keane, pictured in the 1960 Asdee Players photo. What a great photo, thank you for sharing! I am going to send it to her.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén