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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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The scene in the village on the final day of the An Tostal festival when the celebrations were brought to a close with a parade, cross-roads dancing and ceremonial lowering of the Tostal flag. An Tostal was a series of festivals throughout the country celebrating Irish life, inaugurated in 1953 and continuing for the next five years.

1918

Influenza epidemic

The influenza epidemic continues to prevail with unabated virulence in the county, and from various parts, reports of deaths are still being made. In the city, several families are stricken, but, fortunately, no fatal results have occurred since last week.

Of the institutions, St. Mary’s College is the worst sufferer, many of the students being confined to bed, while a number who escaped the disease returned to their homes.

During the week, all the schools in the city were closed, and the theatres have been put out of bounds for military and naval men. The Urban Council decided on Thursday to have the theatres closed for the present.

The Technical Institute has closed down till Monday. Dr. Sandys has resumed work after a week’s illness. Mr. George Duffy, draper, Dominick-st., contracted the disease this week, and his establishment was closed.

The influenza epidemic has been very virulent in Tuam, and there are ten houses in which some of the inmates have not come “down” with the disease. Last weekend, it took a sever grip on the town and the number of sufferers has increased rapidly.

Three shop assistants have fallen victim to the malady. Michael Mullens, whose death was reported last week, was from Ballindine. Thomas Ward, of Clonberne, was removed to his home, where he succumbed on Tuesday. The third victim is Matthew Donnellan, who developed double pneumonia following the disease, and died in Tuam hospital on Tuesday night.

They were extremely popular young men, favourites with their companions, and their early deaths are deeply deplored.

Members of the police force, the post office staff, and bank officials are amongst those laid up. The accommodation in the hospital is taxed to its utmost, and the patients are receiving the greatest care and attention from the doctor, nurses and sisters.

The disease has also spread to Ballyglunin and Turloughmore districts. In the latter place it has been particularly severe, and several deaths have taken place. A young man named Treacy has died near Ballyglunin as a result of it.

1943

Hospital scandal

The condition of affairs in the Galway Central Hospital from the point of view of the treatment of disease was referred to by Mr. M. Donnellan, Leader of Clann na Talmhan, in the Dáil. He said the conditions were a positive disgrace; they were so bad they might be endured only with reluctance and apology as a temporary arrangement if they had been imposed under some scheme of emergency arising out of conditions imposed by actual war or some violent eruption.

The medical and nursing staffs were excellent, but how they managed to do their work and carry on under the conditions imposed by the Minister and his representatives he did not know. The hospital conditions were grossly unjust to the staff and when they were unjust to the staff, they were unjust to the patients.

The whole problem was due to overcrowding, because of the absence of suitable alternative accommodation to relieve pressure on the hospital. It was a monstrous thing to have medical, surgical and tubercular patients mixed in the same hospital; it was unfair to all classes of patients and it was difficult to say who suffered the greatest injustice.

The people of Co. Galway could not understand why that condition of affairs should be allowed to exist. It was not a question of no additional accommodation being available. It would not be easy to find worse or less suitable accommodation for tubercular patients that the Central hospital offered, but the County Council always had been opposed by the Department in its desire to provide better treatment for tubercular patients.

In all decency, he said it was a matter of urgency that a suitable sanatorium should be provided for the treatment of tuberculosis and in the meantime, accommodation of a temporary kind suitable for patients should be found.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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Some of the attendance at the opening of the new school in Ballymacward on June 24, 1974.

1923

Gloom after war

The special correspondent of the “Independent”, who has been writing of the aftermath of civil war in the West, notes that a feeling of apathy, due to the uncertainty of events, exists amongst the sorely-tried people of Connemara; that politics are referred to only with disgust and that not more than fifty per cent. of the people would vote at a general election; that poverty and unemployment are rife, and there is a growing tendency towards emigration; and that there are bitter complaints of the huge impost of rates and taxes.

It is only too true that there is enough of material for the pessimist to brood over, and that a feeling of gloom permeates country towns. But it is a poor tribute to patriotism that has survived such horrors to encourage this gloom.

It is the duty of all of us to get this pessimism out of the national body and to rid ourselves of the notion that we have not enough Christianity and moral sense left to restore our people to cheerful and ordered progress and industry.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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Nurses on strike on May 10, 1980, protesting a sub-standard pay offer. Around 700 nurses took part in the protest, hitting services at Gawlay Regional Hospital where only emergency cases were being admitted.

1923

Peace negotiations

As we go to press, An Dáil is discussing the Peace negotiations between the Government and Mr. de Valera. It was announced on Wednesday for the first time that such negotiations were begun following Mr. de Valera’s “cease fire” proclamation of April 27, and that by the 30th of the month Senators Andrew Jameson and James Douglas were asked by him to discuss proposals.

They said it was for the Government to discuss; they could only confer. Into the ensuring conferences the Government declined to enter personally, but on May 3 the senators placed before Mr. de Valera the Cabinet’s terms, which were that future issues should be decided by the majority vote of the elected representatives of the people, and that as a corollary and a preliminary to the release of prisoners, all lethal weapons should be in the custody and control of the Executive Government.

Mr. de Valera relied to this on May 7 with a document in which he agreed to majority rule and control of arms, but added that arms should be stored in a suitable building in each province under armed Republican guard until after the elections in September, that the oath should not be made a test in the councils of the nation, and that all political prisoners should be released immediately on the signing of this agreement.

“You have brought back to us,” wrote President Cosgrave, “not an acceptance of our conditions, but a long and wordy document inviting debate where none is possible”.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

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Connacht Tribune

Galway In Days Gone By

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Brendan Cunniffe from Oranmore and Robert Kelly, Tirellan Heights at the Galway County Fleadh in Tullycross, Connemara, on May 16, 1985.

1923

State of the parties

Speculation as to parties after the next Irish elections is exceedingly interesting, especially in view of the enlarged franchise.

In Dublin, the view appears to be held by a number of people that Labour will make a great bid for power.

Dublin, however, has a curiously insular habit of thought where matters that concern all Ireland and in which Ireland has a say are concerned. We hope this insularity will rapidly disappear under the new conditions.

The country as a whole is backing the Farmers’ Party, and has not the smallest doubt that it will be the strongest combination in the next Dáil, and that it will oust the purely political parties, the one because it has resorted to force, the other because it has been compelled to use force to supress force, and the Labour Party because Ireland feels that at the back of its policy lurks the danger of Communism.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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