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1747 Irish portrait painter, James Latham died in Dublin on this day in 1747. Latham was once dubbed ‘Ireland’s Van Dyck’ and many of his paintings can still be seen in the National Gallery of Ireland.
Click here to read about more tourist attractions in Dublin
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1849 Richard Sutcliffe was born on this day on a farm in Tipperary in 1849. He worked in coal mines in Ireland before moving to England. Sutcliffe used his first-hand experience of the problems in coal mining and he invented a coal cutting machine in 1892.
He followed that with the invention of the underground conveyor belt in 1905. He set up a company making the conveyor belts and the invention revolutionised the coal mining industry.
Click here to read more about famous Irish scientists
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1885 The first sod was cut at Milltown Malbay by Charles Stewart Parnell. This was a steam driven rail service between Ennis and Kilrush and the journey took about 3 hours. It is now a tourist attraction with fully working steam locomotive.
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1907 Jonathan Synge’s The Playboy of the Western World is performed for the first time at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin on this day in 1907. The audience reacted angrily to the play, feeling it was insulting to Ireland’s working classes.
Riots broke out from the theatre and across Dublin before the police managed to disperse the crowds. The play was met with a similar reaction when it was first performed in New York, with rotten vegetables and stink bombs being thrown onto the stage by the audience.
Read more John Millington Synge quotes here
1936 Francis O’Neill died on this day in 1936. He was an Irish-born American police officer who was elected as the Chief of Police of Chicago on two separate occasions and by two different mayors, a rare achievement at the time.
He was a keen collector of Irish music and his life was made into a musical, Music Mad: How Chief O’Neill Saved the Soul of Ireland, which premiered in Chicago.
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1973 Happy birthday to Brendan Rodgers, born on this day in County Antrim in 1973. Rodgers is a football manager who is renowned for his patient passing style of play.
He led Welsh side Swansea to the English Premier League for the first time in 2011, and has also managed one of the world’s most famous clubs, Liverpool.
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1980 John Doherty died on this day in 1980. He was a travelling Irish folk fiddler and was a popular performer at house dances.
Families would open up their home to him and invite him to play for the party.