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: Molly Page 1 of 5

Brendan Kennelly Essay, The Plaza and Jim Halpin’s Memories

Portmagee; Photo by Armel Whyte on Facebook

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Showing Molly around

Molly was very lucky with the weather for her Kerry holiday. Here we are on the path by The Garden of Europe on a lovely Autumn day in 2021.

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Remember Bingo?

Hard to believe that it’s two years since the last Bingo session.

A sad legacy of Covid 19.

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From Shannonside Annual 1956

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Memories of a former Tenant

I included this photo on my blog last week and I also uploaded it to Facebook. There it evoked these happy memories from Jim Halpin.

David Carrolls; where I started my fishing and shooting business from when we moved from our house at the Dirha Cottages back in 1982. lovely Lady Betty Anne Marian Mc Auliffe and Bob Downey behind the counter backed up by Lisa , Kevin and Anne.

I always remember the 2nd last fleadh cheoil that came to Listowel, tents and pegs, sleeping bags, gas cleaned out the week before the event. I think we took more money that week than we would take in a month. The good old days. With the Cows Lawn black with tents there was never a spot of trouble. Great music and craic. Tim O Connor, our postman and we hiding Tim’s post bag trolly. Charlie the manaquin out side the door. Patrick John Jones from Glin [not his real name] who would come to town every Friday and depending on the uniform would arrive into the shop giving out about it.

Christmas, Halloween the big window display with kids having their eyes glued to it.

Great to see it being used again. Great job, well done folks. People would comment of how friendly the Carroll family were and it being a pleasure to shop there and how the family appreciated the business.

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Life’s a Beach, Love at Midnight, Indian Elections and Molly in Kerry

Evening on Portmarnock Beach in October 2021 Photo; Éamon ÓMurchú
Beautiful image of dawn on Béal Bán strand in October 2021..Photo; Éamon ÓMurchú

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Poignant Memory

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Elections in India….Two facts

The indian Electoral Commission ruled that, in the period after the vote when exit polls are banned, it was also against the law to predict election results using tarot cards or astrologers.

In 2019 Prime minister Narendra Modi’s party won the election. In an effort to appeal to more ascetic followers, Modi was photographed meditating in a cave.. It later turned out that the ‘cave’ was man made, supplied full breakfast, lunch and dinner to its occupants and came with its own phone line, electricity and a bell for summoning a servant.

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She’s Back

It’s two years since Molly has been to Listowel for a holiday. I had to introduce her to all the changes in town. She pretended interest.

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The Man with the Cap

From Shannonside Annual 1956

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Molly, a Hare and a Master Signwriter at work

Golodcrest in Dromin by Paddy Fitzgibbon

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Update on Molly

Still the king of the castle but sheltering from the heat.

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The Blessed Well in Kilshenane

From Closing the Circle, an anthology of the poems of John McGrath

Hare

I met a hare along the road today,

Tall as a greyhound.

He hopped towards me,

hesitated, 

hopped again,

stopped to listen

to my freewheel click,

then turned and loped away.

I gazed in grateful awe

as with each simple spring

the distance grew between us,

marvelled how his quiet grace

belied his hidden power.


Then with one bound

he cleared a ditch

and disappeared from view

leaving me to wonder.

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Dancing in the 1970s

Those were the days.

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Church Street Tattoo


Our local tattooist was taking the opportunity in a lull in business to paint his door jamb.

He had a cancellation due to his client getting sunburnt.

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Master at Work

Martin Chute sign writing in the old fashioned way at Sheahan’s, Upper William Street on Saturday July 24 2021.

Martin was so focussed on his work, he wasn’t even aware I was photographing him. This man is the best at what he does. Listowel is blessed to have him working on our shopfronts.

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Tralee Artist, Folklore and My Neighbour is The New Mayor of Kerry

People have been wondering about Molly. I’m glad to report that I met her in Cork recently and she was in great form. She has loved lockdown with her family at home all the time and lots and lots of attention.

I told her her Listowel admirers were asking.

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Tralee Artist, Mike O’Donnell

Last week I found myself in a part of Tralee that I am not familiar with. I’m sorry I should have noted the name of the area. I was delighted to see the work of one of my favourite muralist’s adorning the walls. The pictures are fabulous but I have no idea what exactly they depict. Looks like Famine times and a few extra unrelated images.

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Bíonn Siúlach Scéalach

I am old enough to remember when homeless men walked the roads, travelling from parish to parish in search of seasonal work. They often called asking if they could sleep in the hay barn for the night. It was unlucky to refuse such a request but my poor mother, who was a widow, never slept a wink if there was a man sleeping in the barn. She was in dread fear he would smoke and burn the barn, hay and all down.

This is what I found in the school’s folklore collection about these spailpíní.

Beggars seldom stay in the same house more than one night unless when the next day is bad. They always have their own food which they collected during the day but sometimes the people of the house give them their supper and breakfast. They also give them a bag of straw to sleep on for the night. Tinkers usually travel in families but the poor travellers go singly or in twos.

About five or six years ago a poor travelling woman stayed at our house for three days and she used to tell us a good deal of funny stories every night.
The best known travelling folk in my locality are as follows:- Paddy Flynn, Bob Landers, Jimmy O’Leary, the O’Briens, Mrs Fitzgerald and they come the most frequently to my locality.

These travellers usually come at Easter and Christmas and before the Pattern and Listowel races.

COLLECTOR James Maher

Gender male

Address Knockaunacurraheen, Co. Kerry

INFORMANT Mrs Sheehy

Gender female

Age 75

Address Ballintogher, Co. Kerry

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Bridge Road

These businesses are on opposite sides of Bridge Road as you approach town from the Tralee side.

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On This Day, June 30 1922

(information from a book, On this Day by Myles Dungan of RTE)

June 30 1922 was the day that future genealogists’ and family researchers’ hearts were well and truly broken. On that fateful day, the biggest explosion ever seen in Dublin destroyed records of Irish administrations from the 13th to the 19th centuries. Earlier damage had already been done during World War 1 with the pulping of census returns for 1861, ’71, ’81 and “ 91.

What was lost in the explosion of 1922?

Census returns for the years 1921, 31, 41, and ’51

One thousand Church of Ireland parish registers

Wills and deeds and land transactions

Court Reports

Military Records

Was this explosion an accident?

Sadly, no.

The public records office was housed in The Four Courts in Dublin. 

On April 14 1922, anti treaty rebels under Rory O’Connor occupied this building.

Pro treaty forces of the Free State government under Michael Collins attempted to dislodge them.

On June 30th the rebels in The Four Courts, now under Ernie O’Malley, surrendered.

The arsenal of ammunition and explosives the rebels had stored in The Four Courts was torched and thus was lost a millennium of official Irish records.

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Jimmy Moloney, Mayor of Kerry

Jimmy Moloney was installed as Mayor of Kerry yesterday. Here he is with his two aunts, Kay Caball and Eila Moriarty.

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A wireless Concert in 1924, A Good Harvest in 1883 and a Red Squirrel

Photo credit: Poshey Ahern

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Wireless Concert in 1924



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1883 was a good year in Listowel



Pilot 25 August 1883

 

Kerry; Agricultural Prospects in North Kerry.— A correspondent writes from Kerry Aug. 4 The crops never looked more promising than at the present in this quarter. Ail round Listowel, Duagh. Newtown. Lixnaw, Ballybunion, and Abbeydorney, the cereal and potato crops wear a most flourishing appearance. Some of the finest potatoes ever eaten, now selling in the Listowel market at 6d. per stone. The weather has been very fine since the 26th ultimo, with the exception of last Sunday, when several showers kept people from being too confident. There is every prospect, should the weather keep fine, as at present, for the next three weeks of a most abundant harvest. This will be considered on all sides a special blessing, as another season of such scarcity as last year would most seriously affect the people.

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By the Feale








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Book Recommendation


Mattie Lennon says that this is a great read for anyone interested in stories associated with rural electrification

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Looking forward to Molly’s Kerry holiday




Thankfully the groomers are back in business so Molly can have a trim before her visit to The Kingdom.


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