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Tag: Ireland’s Own

Ford in Brazil, The Cashen, silage and Ireland’s Own

Aidan Fleming, Cobh Camera Club’s entry in The Rebel Cup photography competition. He called it Letting off Steam


Cherrytrees shed their blossoms


Something I read in Ireland’s Own

Ireland’s Own is an Irish institution. It has been going strong now for many years. It is always packed with entertaining stories and pictures.

I read the following in the Unusual Facts column.

In 1928 Henry Ford bought land in the Amazon forest to harvest rubber to make tyres for Ford cars. He planned to build a Ford plant just like his U.S. one complete with an American style suburb called Fordlandia.

On a 6,000 square mile site in Brazil Ford built houses, a hospital, shops, a restaurant serving American food and he even built a swimming pool.

Ford’s efforts to imposeAmerican ideals on his Brazilian workforce did not succeed and soon the experiment had to be abandoned.

in the 1940s synthetic rubber was developed. Demand for rubber fell off and Ford sold the area back to the Brazilian government.


Cashen Connection

Kateen O’Brien,  Hannah Cahill, Peggy Dee,  Kathleen Laide,  Bridie O’Brien, …….Mary Dee, Nell Kissane and Eileen Dee

 back row : Timmy (Taylor ) Syiiivan Tommy Flanagan dont know this man

Photo and caption from Cashen Connection. This site has this and many old photos from the Cashen area.


First Silage 2017 in Kilfierna, Co. Limerick

Photo: Liam Downes


Snapped in Listowel Town Square

Nancy and Seán were at the Parade of Veterans in Listowel on Saturday April 29 2017


The Lartigue Players in Bantry in the 1980s

Norella’s old photos

BOI Enterprise Town photos,Plum Pudding and paying for water in 1895

Photo by Chris Grayson, photographer to the robins


Holidays Are Coming

They came yesterday

Everyone got in on the act of welcoming the Coca Cola trucks on Sunday December 11 2016. I’ll try to organise my photos for tomorrow. Meanwhile I’m sharing the very best welcoming the trucks picture. It is the work of our local artist, Olive Stack. We didn’t get the snow. The weather was very mild and ideal for outdoor frolicking. And we frolicked in huge numbers. The likes of the crowds was only last seen at a fleadh cheoil. I took lots of photos of the truck and of the unveiling of the Tidy Town seat sculpture.


Some of the Exhibitors at BOI Enterprise Town Expo on November 26 2016

The vey successful Listowel Taekwando

 Thai message is available in Ballybunion.

 Tina Hayes was there with her family promoting her new business. Tina will take small groups or individuals and help them to get started on the internet or social media. Her business is called Teapot Computer Solutions.

 These are the Trojan Boxers.

Ella O’Sullivan had a beautiful display of her hand crafts.

The Garda stand was popular. I got a hi vis vest there.

 KDYS were offering sweets  and Christmas tree decorations to hand paint.

Damien was promoting Listowel Board Gaming Club.

Martin Griffin, Stationmaster, and Paddy Keane volunteer guardsman were manning the Lartigue stand.

My friends, Mary and Noelle were raising awareness of the work of the local branch of the Multiple Sclerosis Society.

My photo of the great men of The Men’s Shed Movement is a bit shaky.


Why does a Plum Pudding have no plums in it?

The answer is a fact gleaned from The Ireland’s Own Annual 2016.

In the nineteenth century raisins were called plums. A Christmas or plum pudding is traditionally made with dried fruit held together with eggs  and suet, moistened with treacle and flavoured with cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger.

It started life as plum porridge. People used to fast on Christmas Eve and they ate this plum porridge beforehand to line their stomachs.

Fact as learned in this year’s Ireland’s Own!


Humans of Listowel (in times past)

Junior Griffin gave me this happy photo of himself (a younger self) and his friend the late Garda Denis O’Donovan R.I.P.


One from the Archives; Back in 1895 paying for water was an issue in Listowel

Saturday, November 23, 1895


Listowel, Monday. An adjourned meeting of the Town Commissioners was

held this evening at 7.30 p.m., the chair being occupied by Mr. F.

Creagh, solicitor, chairman. The other commissioners present

were—Messrs. M. W. Mulvihill, M. O’Connor, D. Barry, R H. M’Carthy, J.

Cahill, T. Buckley

Mr. D. J. Potter applied for permission to put  stained glass in one

of the sides of the street lamp outside the door of his hotel in

William Street, for the purpose of advertising his establishment.

The Chairman considered the commissioners should be very slow to allow

their property be used for private advertising purposes, and if they

acceded to Mr. Potter’s request others would probably make similar

ones. Mr. Potter could put up a lamp on his own account.

The other commissioners concurred, and the application was unanimously refused.

Dr. O’Connor wrote complaining of the unsanitary condition of his

house in The Square, which was a source of danger to himself and the

other residents in the locality.

The Chairman said they could not very well ask the landlord to do

anything pending the putting down of a sewer from the National School

to the old mill stream, as at present there was no outlet for Dr.


The matter was referred to the sanitary committee, the members of

which were urged to have the sewer constructed without delay.

The Clerk asked what water rent would be put on Mr- Dissette who was

carrying on a mineral factory in Church Street, in the house recently

occupied by Daniel Guerin, whose rent was 10s a year. Mr. M’Carthy

proposed that a rent of £3 per year be charged in future. Mr. Dissette

would use more water than ten ordinary houses. Mr. Cahill seconded.

Mr. Mulvihill considered £3 too high, and thought they should not

handicap Mr. Dissette in starting his industry. He proposed that it be

given for £2, Mr. Leahy seconded. On a division, the rent was fixed at

££. It was decided that the water rents be collected half-yearly for

the future. Mr. Mulvihill asked if Mr. Fealy would get a cheque for

the coals he had delivered. The Chairman said the matter was in the

hands of the Finance Committee, who refused to sign a cheque, and the

board was consequently powerless. Adjourned.

A Knitting Project, Seán McCarthy and Ireland’s Own

December Robin photographed by Kerry’s best Robin Photographer

Another Chris Grayson robin in The National Park, Killarney


Michael Tea

A very talented knitter and a super designer of tea cosies, Frances O’Keeffe of Listowel designed and knit this charming tea cosy.


Diocesan Knitting Project

Recently I was part of Diocese of Kerry organised crafting project. The idea was that people (mostly women) from all the parishes of Kerry would knit squares. Then we all came together in Killarney to sew or crochet the squares into blankets to send with Trocaire to Gaza. It was an uplifting and enjoyable occasion and I took a few photos.


 Seán McCarthy R.I.P.  Poet of the People

Seán McCarthy, poet and balladeer was a man who had his finger on the pulses of North Kerry people. He wrote many great verses celebrating Kerry and its people. Junior Griffin treasures all his collections of poems and songs and I have photographed a few for you. Firstly read what Bryan MacMahon wrote about him in the forward to one of these anthologies.


What I’m Reading Now

No Christmas reading list is complete without Ireland’s Own Christmas Annual. this year it contains a story from one of our own. Be sure to read Bobby Robin’s Christmas gift, a story for young people by Neil Brosnan.

They say that if you miss The Ireland’s Own you miss part of Christmas. If you read all of Ireland’s Own you’ll miss the whole of Christmas.

I’m going to share with you a piece of knowledge I learned from this year’s Ireland’s Own Annual. Christmas pudding was first made in the 14th century. It was made five weeks before the big day on what was referred to as “Stirring Sunday”. It was made with 13 ingredients representing Jesus and his twelve apostles. Every member of the household took a turn at stirring the mixture. It had to be stirred from East to West to represent the journey of the Magi.


A Few More Photos from the BOI Expo in November

Interview with a Dragon

Eileen Broderick and Aoife Hannon at Aoife’s stall.

Finesse had some beautiful wedding wear on display

Available at Chery’s Antique store in Church St.

Oonagh Hartnett and Sonja of Broderick’s Pharmacy

Susan Quilter, vet.

I wish I could write like Con Houlihan

Con Houlihan has a turn of phrase that is distinctive and engaging. it is such a pity that all those years he wrote almost exclusively about sport, where his brilliance was lost to so many of us who rarely read the sports pages.

When I was looking up Ireland’s Own for a post last week I came across this superb article from Con in an old Independent. I make no apologies for quoting it in its entirety. It is brilliant. Enjoy!

By Con Houlihan

Wednesday July 09 2008

Irish Independent

Sometimes I wonder if William Yeats
ever read Ireland’s Own.

I don’t think he did, otherwise he
wouldn’t have said “Romantic Ireland’s dead and gone”. The survival
of that magazine is a romantic story in itself — and in every number you will
find tales of men and women in the thralls of love.

When first I came to be aware of
Ireland’s Own, its attraction for me was the first page — it was made up
completely of jokes. Those jokes were all prize winners: the overall winner got
five shillings; the rest got half-a-crown.

These prizes may seem paltry —
believe me they were not. If the winner of the big prize happened to like a
drink, he could get six pints of stout and a half pint.

If the winner happened to be a lad
in the primary school, he could get — believe it or not — 600 good-class

Ireland’s Own introduced most of us
to that wicked form of verbal misuse called the pun. I believe that you can
never forget your first encounter with the pun. Certainly I can’t. It was
probably very old but it was new to me: “Two girls went for a tramp in the
woods — he ran away.”

I need hardly add that to win a
prize for a joke in Ireland’s Own meant more than the money — the prestige was
great. Remember that this competition was open to the entire island and
probably beyond — you were in against serious competition.

Page one is now devoted to more
serious subjects but humour hasn’t been entirely abandoned. There is a page
headed The Lilt Of Irish Laughter — it lives up to its billing, even though
there are no more prizes. Listen to this:

“‘Twas in a cafe they first

“Romeo and Juliet.

“And there he first ran into

“For Romeo owed what

Here is another:

Housewife: “Can I put the
wallpaper on myself?” Tradesman: “Yes, ma’am — but it would look
much better on the wall.”

Teacher: “Give me a sentence
containing the word ‘fascinate’.” “Pupil: ‘I have a lovely belt with
nine holes — but I can only fasten eight.” That’s enough for one day, let
us turn to more sensible topics.

Ireland’s Own has always been
strong on music. Every number carries a big variety of songs. Although this
grand old magazine has a high moral tone, it has a soft spot for outlaws. A
certain Jack Duggan often appears on its pages. He was supposed to have been
born in Kerry — but he was no better than he should have been. At least the
constabulary of New South Wales thought so — and they were determined to put
manners on him.

And so one morning as he was riding
along with no thought in his head except to rob a bank or two, up came three
mounted policemen — Kelly, Davis, and Fitzroy.

They were almost certainly
descendants of convicts or perhaps even convicts themselves. But that didn’t
prevent them from doing their duty. They called on the outlaw to surrender but
Jack had other ideas.

“He fired a shot at Kelly that
brought him to the ground,

“And turning then to Davis who
received a fatal wound,

“But a bullet pierced his
proud young heart from the pistol of Fitzroy,

“And that was how they captured
him, The Wild Colonial Boy.”

Ballads, as we all know, tend to
suffer changes in words from one singer to another; sometimes a singer may
change a word from one version to another in the course of a song.

One of my favourite people,
Margaret Barry, sometimes got so carried away with emotion that she might
change a man’s name. Thus in one version of The Wild Colonial Boy, the hero,
kind of, is Jack in the first verse; his name is changed in the last verse:

“And that was how they
captured Tim, the wild colonial boy.”

In the most recent version of that
ballad in Ireland’s Own there is a more startling change. Jack, you will
remember, shot Davis very dead — but according to the number for June 9, this
year, we may conclude that Davis wasn’t shot at all. When Jack fired the first
shot, “Davis fell down at the sound.” The people of Wales will like

Some people are born too late: two
generations missed out on Kitty The Hare, the most remarkable person that ever
graced the pages of Ireland’s Own. In her heyday she was as popular as Mary
Robinson was to become. She was a woman of the roads, Kitty not Mary. She was
not a member of the travelling class though she travelled more than most: she
was a poor woman who somehow had fallen from life’s wheel.

People such as Kitty were part of
an age when few people bought daily papers and when wireless sets hadn’t begun
to proliferate. They brought all kinds of news and they were very articulate:
“Sure ’twas lonely — last night as I came over The Black Mountain, with
the sea raging down below — but I knew I would get a bed in Donoghue’s of The
Glen, people who never refused a bed to a poor woman of the roads.”

There was an era when Ireland’s Own
carried a serial story. After the first episode you were of course given a

The story so far: “Tom
O’Connor had to abandon his university career when his father died. He now has
the farm and hopes to marry his girlfriend Peggy O’Hanrahan. Alas, he has only
40 acres; her father has 200.”

Who could blame Peggy when she
passed him by one day in the street in Waterford? I could. This is the all too
familiar Irish caste system. We remember The Streams of Bunclody: “For she
has a freehold and I have no land.”

The penfriends page has long been
part of the magazine’s staple diet. This is globalisation in a good sense.

Dublin Opinion once did a nice
spoof on the page devoted to lonely hearts. “Gentleman whose interests
include singing, dancing, reading, hop scotch and playing the mouth organ,
would like to meet lady with similar tastes who owns her own shop. Send photo
of shop”.

– Con Houlihan

This year Listowel Writers week is honouring Con.  In conjunction with Radio Kerry and sponsored by Acorn Life,  Writers’ Week is running a young sports journalists competition. 

They will never find another Con Houlihan though!


Trinity College recently ran a photo  competition for the students. The idea was to take photos of Trinity that typified the college and its students. The prize was an Apple TV.

The photos are here;

This is my favorite. The caption says it all.  It’s called

“I know, I can read” and the photo was taken  by Mohd Amir Anwar


Check out these superb photos of activities in Kerry on the discover Kerry website


This following link is for people in Canada who want to build their Irish family tree

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