That's Just How It Was's Blog (89)

James Napper Tandy, Hero of the Hour -- or Not?

This song is a constant reminder to me of my childhood, running around singing lines from it with my childhood friends, not knowing or not caring why we were singing it, or indeed who Napper Tandy was. Historical events were not seared into our minds. Only Religion took that place



Added by That's Just How It Was on July 4, 2020 at 10:00am — No Comments

Butterflies / Fire / Mythology / Legend / Folklore from Ireland

 As a child running around the garden’s and fields in Wolfe Tone Square where I was raised, playing with friends on the Bray Head that rose above the Town of Bray m I was always fascinated by Butterflies and their many different colours of beautiful wings. Trying to catch them in jam jars, to have a good look at them. I say ‘trying to catch’ because that…


Added by That's Just How It Was on March 17, 2020 at 10:30am — No Comments

Matilda Tone  1769-1849. Wife of Wolfe Tone , Mother, Rebel

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Martha “Matilda “ Tone [ wife of Theobald Wolfe Tone] was born in Dublin to Catherine Witherington [née Fanning]. Records show that her father was listed as a Woolen Draper, a Wine Merchant and a merchant between the years  1768 - 1793, some…


Added by That's Just How It Was on March 12, 2020 at 10:00am — No Comments

Theobald Wolfe Tone: 1763 -1998 Considered to the the Father of Republicanism

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Theobald Wolfe Tone was born in 1763. Descendant from  French Protestant family who fled Religious Prosecution in the mid-16th century. One branch of the Tone family settled in Dublin. Peter Tone,  the son of one…


Added by That's Just How It Was on March 3, 2020 at 11:00am — No Comments

Betsy Gray -- Irish Joan of Arc and Heroine of '98 Rising

A heroine, beyond any doubt, our own Irish Joan of Arc, was Betsy Grey,  a folk hero to all of Ulster, with both loyalist and republicans claiming her as their own. She was a Presbyterian, with links to the United Irishman, a nonsectarian revolutionary movement, as were her father, brother and her…


Added by That's Just How It Was on February 18, 2020 at 8:30am — No Comments

'Nano' Nagle, 'The Lady of the Lantern'

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Ireland has a centuries-old, rich and proud history defending its people and attempting to take back control of the Island for the native population (predominantly Roman Catholics)…


Added by That's Just How It Was on February 13, 2020 at 7:30am — 2 Comments

A Short History of Michael Collins, Ireland's 'Big Fellow'

One of the most iconic figures that emerged out of the Easter Rising was Michael Collins. Born in 1890, he was the third son in a family of eight children. Some sources would suggest that the Collins family were part of a very ancient clan who were widely spread over County Cork. 

Collins' father did not marry…


Added by That's Just How It Was on June 8, 2019 at 2:00pm — 19 Comments

That's Just How It Was [1]

Historical Background

Between 1844 and 1854, when Patrick and Anne Nolan were born (Bridget’s parents), Ireland was suffering the worst famine ever known in its history, as the potato crop, the staple diet, had failed. This had been caused by a fungal infestation that attacked the roots of the potato, which in turn caused most…


Added by That's Just How It Was on January 30, 2019 at 6:00am — 2 Comments

That's Just How it was ... Author Mary Thorpe


This work is a labour of love by the writer Mary Thorpe as a tribute to her much-loved Granny O’Rourke (nee Nolan). It is an attempt to place the stories she heard throughout her life into a true and historical context. As a modern social worker who came across many cases of social deprivation in various social-work…


Added by That's Just How It Was on January 30, 2019 at 5:30am — No Comments

The Harp -- The Oldest Emblem of Ireland

The oldest harp on which the ‘official’ national emblem of  Ireland is based is housed in the Long Room at Trinity College, Dublin. Two other medieval harps that have also been preserved from that era, are housed in The Museum of Scotland: The Queen Mary Harp 15th century - and the Lamont Harp [date being…


Added by That's Just How It Was on April 6, 2017 at 10:00am — 6 Comments

Shamrock: The National Emblem of Ireland

The shamrock is thought by many Irish people globally, to be grown exclusively in Ireland, in Irish soil. Some sources would argue that this is a myth however and was perpetrated by entrepreneurial business people and owes more to…


Added by That's Just How It Was on February 19, 2017 at 9:00am — 10 Comments

Romancing the Truth -- The Legendary 'Molly Malone'

Who was Molly Malone? . . . That is a very good question, a question that has had many historians baffled, and continues to be debated by experts in this field for many a decade. Stranger than fiction, an inspiration to many millions of people all over the world, not only for her singing of "Cockles and Mussels" as she plied…


Added by That's Just How It Was on January 23, 2017 at 9:30am — 5 Comments

Writer, Activist Alice Milligan -- Prodigy, Visionary, Humanitarian

Alice Milligan (1866-1953) was born into a middle-class Methodist family, one of 11 children. (Some sources would suggest that there were 13 children.) Her father was Seaton Milligan, a writer, poet, antiquary, member of the Royal Irish Academy (RIA), and a businessman. Her mother was Charlotte Milligan (nee Burns).

Alice was always…


Added by That's Just How It Was on November 8, 2016 at 6:30am — 7 Comments

Nora Connolly O’Brien -- Prodigy, Rebel, Politician, Connolly's Daughter

Nora Connolly was born into a family that knew hardship from birth. The second child of James Connolly and Lillie Connolly (nee Reynolds), she would forge her way through life based on the knowledge and learning that was instilled into her by both of her parents; her mother a governess who home schooled all of her children -…


Added by That's Just How It Was on September 23, 2016 at 8:00am — 2 Comments

Lillie Connolly -- Mother And Rebel, Widow of James Connolly

Racing fruitlessly after a tram that was speeding away from him, a young British soldier spotted a shy young woman, out for a stroll in Dublin City, on her day off from working as a governess in Merrion Square. Lillie Reynolds, a softly spoken young woman who had been raised in the Protestant faith, did not usually flirt…


Added by That's Just How It Was on August 12, 2016 at 12:00pm — 2 Comments

Dr. Kathleen Lynn -- Irish Rebel, Politician and Humanitarian

Kathleen Lynn has been described as one of the great Irish humanitarians of the 20th century. Her influence extended throughout Irish society with her work in hospital medicine, her fight against poverty and disease, her career as a politician and as a lifelong social revolutionary. She was a campaigner for women’s…


Added by That's Just How It Was on August 1, 2016 at 7:30am — 2 Comments

Caitlín Bean Uí Chléirigh [Kathleen, Mrs Clarke] Widow of Thomas Clarke - Mother, Entrepreneur, Politician and All Around Woman of Principle

-The following article will give many facts and details of this extraordinary woman, who, without much formal education, rose to the top of the most higher echelons of power in a Political Institution, in an era when women were supposed to be ‘seen but not heard’..She lived for fifty years after the execution of her husband Thomas Clarke for his…


Added by That's Just How It Was on June 30, 2016 at 7:00am — No Comments

Read Foreword and Excerpts From 'That's Just How It Was'


Within Bridget’s story, Mary is writing about an era of tough times, and she acknowledges ‘these roots’ as the make-up of her own resilient Irish character. She is proud of her grandmother’s achievements, especially with…


Added by That's Just How It Was on June 27, 2016 at 8:30am — 2 Comments

Indefatigable Irish Labour Leader 'Big' Jim Larkin: 'Let Us Rise'

James Connolly said of "Big" Jim Larkin, his colleague in the labour movement: "We have amongst us a man of genius, of splendid vitality, great in his conceptions, magnificent in his courage." George Bernard Shaw described him as "the greatest Irishman since Parnell."

In 1913, Constance…


Added by That's Just How It Was on June 15, 2016 at 9:30am — 2 Comments

Arthur Griffith, Rebel / Journalist / Founder of Sinn Fein; President of the Free State

A controversial figure from a very early age in Irish politics and journalism, Arthur Griffith has been noted by some source’s in history, as a man who courted controversy.  While he was a great orator, and not a monarchist himself, he struggled to get people to embrace his concept of a dual – monarchy, to allow Ireland…


Added by That's Just How It Was on May 7, 2016 at 10:30am — No Comments

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