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 listowelconnection@gmail.com

Tag: Dan Keane Page 1 of 3

Shops Old and New

McGuire’s Pharmacy, Main Street

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A Lighthearted Limerick from Dan Keane

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1930s Listowel

J.J. Dillon Grocery shop, 2 Main Street, Listowel in the 1930s.

Photo copyright; Tipperary Studies Photographs of Munster Shops

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Sr. Gemma R.I.P, A woman before her time

An interview with Sr. Gemma McGrath which appeared in the 1991 Presentation Secondary School Yearbook.

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Ella Corridan R.I.P.

Another of the old residents of Listowel Town Square has gone to her eternal reward.

Mrs Ella Corridan was one of the salt of the earth characters who live quietly but contribute vitally to the community. She was a regular at morning mass where she always had a cheery greeting for friends and acquaintances.

This picture was taken in Craftshop na Mear in 2013. Mrs. Corridan was hugely supportive of that venture.

She was also a great supporter of Listowel Connection. She was always anxious to provide me with any content she could. She always told me how much she regretted that I had not started the blog while her husband was alive and in his prime because he had such a great interest in local history.

Mrs. Corridan told me the story of the tragic killing of her first cousin, Sr. Aidan Quinlan in South Africa.

Killing of Sr. Aidan Quinlan

She was truly grateful when I wrote about it in this blog. She was anxious that her cousin’s horrific death would not define her and that her immense good work in that troubled part of the world would not be forgotten.

This event in her family history had a huge impact on Ella and it was typical of her that she was anxious I would write about Sr. Aidan rather than anything about herself.

Ella Corridan lived a long and happy life. She raised a big family, many of whom still live locally and they and her grandchildren gave her enormous pleasure.

Ella and I have roots in the same part of North Cork. She often mentioned those connections. For her, family was always number one.

May her gentle soul rest in peace. Listowel is the poorer for her passing.

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Reaching out beyond Parish Boundaries

Galvins on William Street

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Old Friends Reunited at Writers’ Week

Éamon ÓMurchú, Kay Caball, Pat White and Jim MacMahon

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Ballydonoghue Parish Magazine

Ballydonoghue Parish magazine is a credit to everyone associated with it over the years. It is a treasure, eagerly awaited at home and abroad every year. So many of these precious local journals have ceased to publish and their loss leaves a huge gap in our tapestry of local history and memories.

I take my hat off to the good people of Ballydonoghue.

The 2022 Ballydonoghue Parish Magazine committee at a function at The Thatch, Lisselton February 19 2022.

Front: Maria Leahy, Jim Finnerty, Áine Canavan, Colette O’Connor and John F Keane. Back: Seán Linnane, Ger Moran, Mike Gilbert, Ann Foley, Seán Stack and David Kissane.Material is being accepted now for the 2022 edition and may be emailed to magazine@ballydonoghue.net or posted to BPM, Lisselton PO, Co Kerry.

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A Dan Keane Limerick

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Matt Mooney’s Photo

Matt shared this photo of Vocational School boys on Facebook…no dates and no names except for Matt himself on the back left and Michael Gaine on the back right.

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Old Ballybunion

Ballybunion Tourist Office shared this beach scene as it was 1930 to 1950

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In Time of War

Mattie Lennon sent us this;

“Hitler was running riot through Poland with very little opposition. The cream of the British Army, battered and broken, had their backs to the sandy walls of Dunkirk. The Listowel Grenadiers of the LDF were gathered in Eddie Scanlon’s pub making feverish plans to invade Russia…..

 “The Listowel LDF after much liquid discussion, in Eddie Scanlon’s Bar, decided not to invade Russia after all”.

 Written by the late Sean McCarthy.

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Happiness

On Church St.

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Remembering Past Writers’ Weeks

This is a lovely photo from a few years ago of Writers Week stalwarts, Billy Keane, Noreen Buckley, Nora Relihan and Mike Lynch.

Writers’ Week 2022 will run from June 1 to June 5 2022

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Another Dan Keane Limerick

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Rural Electrification

This is the book I am currently reading. It is a beautifully written story based in Co. Clare.

I grew up listening to stories of The Shannon Scheme and the coming of the electric light, so the neighbourhood depicted in the book is not as alien to me as it probably is to most of today’s readers.

Then in my trawl through my stash old old school magazines I found this apt essay,

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Ard Churam needs your help

Fundraising is central to both sustaining and growing the facilities and services on offer within Ard Chúram. As a beneficiary we have been afforded a wonderful opportunity to raise capital as we strive to pay for our purpose build facilities which represent a haven of support for our clients, their families and their carers.

It is for that reason we are seeking your support; we are asking you to choose Ard Chúram Dementia Centre as your designated charity and pedal it out for us on Saturday, July 2nd. 

If you can help you’ll find al the details on the Ard Churam Facebook page.

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Some Old Things

Catch of the Day, Main Street

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Two St. Michael’s Colleagues, R.I.P

Two Corkmen, Jim Cogan and Michael Cody, many moons ago.

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Medicinal Recipes from 1852

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Good New for St. Michael’s

(text and image from St. Michael’s website)

Back: Mayor of Kerry, Jimmy Moloney, Johnny Mulvihill, Principal, St Michaels’, Minister for Education, Norma Foley, Mike Hassett, Deputy Principal. Tony Behan, Board of Management Front: Odhran Bucklety, Jack O’Connor, Ciaran O’Sullivan and Donagh Buckley

Statement from Norma Foley;

Multi-million Euro Extension for Listowel School!I am delighted to announce a multi-million euro extension project for St Michael’s College Listowel under the additional accommodation scheme.The state of-the-art building project includes provision for a special education teaching room, a multimedia room, a music room, an art room, two science labs and a project store room. Approval was also given for reconfiguration works to upgrade an existing art room, converting it into a mainstream classroom.It was wonderful to have the opportunity to visit St Michael’s College in Listowel this week and to personally deliver this good news.St Michael’s College is synonymous with the town and this extension is an endorsement of the excellence in education being provided by the entire school community.

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Dan Keane’s Limericks

Dan Keane who passed away in 2012 was a man of varied and extraordinary talents. I encountered Dan first as as storyteller and I was enthralled by him. His story was about a football match, a subject on which Dan was an expert. I later learned that Dan was a ballad maker and poet of some merit.

Much later I learned that Dan, while including scholars and literary men among his ancestors, was , himself, completely self taught. His appetite for knowledge coupled with his interest in local history and lore made him a knowledgeable and popular raconteur and writer.

His last volume of verse was the above, A Kerryman’s limericks, and I’m going to bring you a few over the next few days.

The next is not one of Dan’s but he professed it was one of his favourites.

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Great Old Photos

Tipperary Studies is a great website devoted to preserving and promoting the past.

They have a marvellous digital archive of old photos and videos. Among their collections is a collection of Photographs of Munster. These photos were taken by a professional photographer on glass plates in the 1930s.

While most of the images are of Tipperary there are some lovely photos of a few Listowel shops and their owners or workers.

Please respect Tipperary Studies copyright claim to these digitised images which may not be used for commercial purposes without permission.

This lovely photo was unidentified in the collection but an old neighbour has identified the late Mrs. Mona Dalton at the gate of her home in Bridge Road.

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blackbird, The Rattoo Swan, Government difficulties in 1927 and a better photo of the Dan Keane Variety Show cast

Photo: Chris Grayson

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Swans Return


This is Bridget O’Connor’s beautiful picture of Mammy swan with her brood of 2015. Earlier this month the same swan and her husband returned to the exact same spot to build their nest. 

Anyone who knows anything about swans knows that they value their privacy and independence so Bridget kept well back to take her first photo of the returned swans.

Then came the biblical deluge of April 10 2016 and all her friends were worried for Mammy swan as the water rose around her nest threatening to swamp it. Mammy swan became agitated, toing and froing from the nest. Two local friends of the swan staged a quick intervention while she was on one of her wanderings and, using pitchforks, raised the nest to a higher spot. Thankfully, the swans accepted the new higher location and they have now returned to hatch their eggs in their beloved nesting spot.

Don’t go near them. I’ll keep you updated.

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Deja Vu all over again



Back in 1927, Ireland was in a similar pickle to today’s shaky political situation.

The Irish general election of June 1927 was held on 9 June 1927. The newly elected members of the 5th Dáil assembled at Leinster House on 23 June when the new President of the Executive Council and Executive Council of theIrish Free State were appointed.

The election saw the establishment of Fianna Fáil as a participant in the Dáil, taking most of the support and many of the members of the abstentionist Anti-Treaty Sinn Féin. The impact of this shift was to remove Cumann na nGaedheal‘s working majority among TDs attending, making the Dáil short-lived. (Wikipedia)

Irish Independent Saturday, 27
August, 1927; Page: 10

PROSPECTS IN KERRY FIANNA FAIL
DIFFICULTIES

The news of the decisive dual
victory of the Government in the Dublin by-elections caused great jubilation
amongst all Government supporters in Tralee. The announcement of the Dail
dissolution and such an early General Election, while creating general surprise,
came as a veritable bombshell to the Opponents of the Government, says the ”
Irish Independent” correspondent. President Cosgrave’s decision has the
unanimous approval of all his supporters there as well as of merchants,
traders, farmers, and all others having a stake in the country. The lead given
by Dublin is taken as ominous, and the belief here is that it will be fairly
generally followed throughout the Saorstat at the General Election. The chances
of Fianna Fail are being freely canvassed, and while many of their supporters
are confident of doing better this time owing to the party having entered the
Dail, the extreme section of followers, confined mainly to the younger
idealists. are so disgusted with the taking of the oath that a big number of these
young voters who worked so hard for the party last June will take no part
whatever in the coming election.

VICTORY FOR GOVERNMENT.

Supporters of the Government are
convinced of a sweeping victory on this occasion. ” If the Government don’t
sweep the country this time,” said one prominent Tralee gentleman, ” God help
the country; but the people have got so sick of political wrangling now that
they will put an end to it for ever.”

An influential member of the
Farmers’ Union Party heartily welcomed the early General Election. His only
regret is that it will not give sufficient time to the farmers to meet and
throw in their lot with the Government party, which they so loyally stood by in
the recent crisis. Their duty, however, he said, was to stand by the Government
candidates.

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Picturesque streetscape on Bridge Road

Hill Top, Bridge Road, Listowel April 2016

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The Whole Picture



Betty Stack has sent us the full picture of that cast from the Dan Keane Show in the mid seventies.

Here is the list of names, all except one man,

From back;  Kieran Kelliher,Patrick Flaherty, Seán Ahern, Timmy Leahy, Seán Broderick, Liam Tarrant, P.J. Ryan, Jerry Nolan, …….  ……, Gerard Buckley, Michael Dowling Christy Stack, 

Muriel Dowling, Geraldine Dowling, Kathleen O’Connor, Betty Stack, Maureen Dowling, Honor O’Connor,  Mary RyanPaudie Keane, Timmy Brosnan, Peggy Sweeney, Philomena Dillon and Dan Keane

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What a week!



Last week started out for your blogger with a lovely family birthday.




Then was marred by the illness and hospitalization of a beloved grandchild.

The week ended with a feast of great things in North Kerry; Women in Media in Ballybunion, A Hen Night Epiphany in St. John’s, and a celebration to mark Brendan Kennelly’s 80th birthday.

If you are not interested in any of these things you are in for a lean few days on Listowel connection as I intend telling you all about my adventures, complete with pictures.

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The Ones to Watch




Padraig O’Connor of Ballyduff is on the far right. He is pictured here with his UCC team who were honoured in Cork for their participation in an international business competition in Canada.

Left to right; Brenda Nestor, JMUCC Coach with the 2016 Cork University Business School team: Jess Griffin, Julian Hoare, Klara Sarkovska and Padraig O’Connor being recognised for their participation in the John Molson University Case Study Competition 2016.

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