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1873 Thomas Andrews Jr. the man responsible for building the Titanic, was born in Comber, County Down on this day in 1873.
He was the managing director of Harland and Wolff in Belfast, the company that built the ship. Andrews was on board for its maiden voyage across the Atlantic and was one of the 1514 people that died when it sank after hitting an iceberg.
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1877 John O’Mahony died on this day in 1877 in New York. He was born in Limerick and both his father and his uncle took part in the 1798 Irish Rebellion, as Irish people tried to break free from British rule. O’Mahony took part in the failed Young Irelander Rebellion of 1848 and was forced to leave the country for his involvement. He went to New York where he founded the Fenian Brotherhood (sister organisation to the Irish Republican Brotherhood) with the aim of securing freedom for Ireland. Many of his recruits were soldiers from the American Civil War. O’Mahony did not personally take part in the Fenian Rising of 1867 or the several raids on Canada.
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1959 Happy birthday to Mick McCarthy, born on this day in 1959 in Barnsley, England. McCarthy was a professional footballer and then went on to be a manager.
He played for the Republic of Ireland 57 times and captained them at their first ever appearance at a World Cup Finals in 1990. McCarthy took over as manager of the national team in 1996. He led the team the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea, where he famously fell out with Roy Keane leading to the player walking out on his team just days before the start of the tournament.
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1991 On this day in 1991, the IRA attacked 10 Downing Street while the cabinet were meeting. Three shells containing plastic explosives were fired at the home of the Prime Minister from a van 200 yards away.
Two failed to detonate and the third landed in the garden, exploding and leaving a sizeable crater in the lawn. No-one was seriously injured but experts said that had the shells hit their target of the meeting room then it is probable that the cabinet would have been killed.
The IRA claimed responsibility for the attack. They issued this statement: “While nationalist people in Northern Ireland are forced to live under British rule, then the British Cabinet will be forced to meet in bunkers.”
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1998 GAA star Michael McCarthy was buried on this day in 1998, after he was tragically killed in a traffic accident. Mourners joined in song with a verse of the traditional Irish folk song Skibbereen, the name of the town in Cork where McCarthy was born.
Click here to read more about the song, Skibbereen
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2002 On this day in 2002, Irish band the Cranberries announced that all the money from their single, Time is Ticking Out, will be donated to the Chernobyl Children’s Project.
Click here to read more about the Cranberries