Irish Seattle News
Dé Domhnaigh, 8 Samhain     2015    Sunday, November 8
In This Issue
Paddy Nowlan, the father of Seattle's  Br í d Nowlan, died in Co. Kildare November 6

Bridget McGovern, the mother of Seattle's Caroline Cumming, died in Co. Leitrim November 4 

Mary Byrne Hjorth, a native of Co. Wicklow, died in Seattle October 22 OBIT

Austin Rynne, a brother-in-law of Danny Quinn of Edmonds, died in New York October 15

Ted O'Donovan, 87, a native of Cork, died in Seattle October 13 

Mavis Hartman, 88, a native of Co. Down, died in Tumwater October 3

Rose Caldwell, 96, a native of Derry, died in Port Townsend October 2

Nora Anderson, 93, a Co. Meath native, died in Bellingham September 23 

Sally Jorgensen, 83, a native of Cork, died in Seattle September 19

Mary Randles, 82, mother of Seattle's Dermot Randles, died in Kenmare, Co. Kerry September 8 

Mike Sexton, 78, a native of Dublin, died in Seattle August 31 

Nora Duggan, 95, whose parents and late husband were from Ireland, died in Tacoma on July 25 

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a n-anamacha dílse

May their faithful souls rest at God's right hand


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Irish-born explorer Ernest Shackleton is one of the principal figures of the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration. Artist Austin Dwyer, a Co. Tipperary native who lives in Mukilteo, has available for sale 4 limited edition signed Shackleton prints that have been faithfully reproduced on the highest quality archival paper. See details at

Irish Heritage Club Affiliated Programs
Seattle Area Irish Resources
Irish Harp
Consulate General of Ireland,
San Francisco
Seattle Consulate Logo
Honorary Consul of Ireland,  Seattle
Handling questions regarding Irish  passports or Irish citizenship
2010 Festival
Irish Dancing Schools
Irish Musicians, Classes & Sessions
Irish Language
Irish Language Classes
Claddagh Ring
Irish Imports
Guinness Pint
Irish Pubs & Restaurants
Other Irish Links
Irish Passport
Are you eligible to apply for Irish Citizenship?
Green Card
If you'r an Irish citizen with a US Green Card, why wait to apply for dual US-Irish citizenship?
Ireland Study
Would you like to study  in Ireland?
Images of Ireland
Living & Working in Ireland / Moving to Ireland
Connect Ireland
Through your connections, help create jobs in Ireland and receive a reward from the Irish Government
Irish Seattle Book Cover
Irish Seattle
A pictorial history of the Irish in Seattle from 1851 to the 1990s
The Celtic Connection
The Celtic Connection Newspaper
The voice of Celts around the Pacific Northwest. Pick up a free copy each month at your local Seattle-area Irish Pub or Restaurant, or read the latest issue online for free!
Irish Books written in the Irish Language
Books in English about small localities in Ireland
You're never too young to play the Uilleann Pipes
The Wild Atlantic Way
The Wild Atlantic Way
A drone's view of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin
A drone's view of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin
OMI's Cheerleader as Gaelige
OMI's Cheerleader as Gaelige
Kinnagoe Bay on the Inishowen peninsula
Kinnagoe Bay on the Inishowen peninsula
Humans of Dublin - short quotes from strangers on the streets of Dublin
Irish Lighthouses
Irish Lighthouses
Ireland's South West
Ireland's South West
360° Virtual Tour of the Cliffs of Moher
Irish  in Seattle

- Irish Network Seattle hosts a social media and digital content marketing event on Thursday, November 12 at T.S McHugh's, 21 Mercer St, on lower Queen Anne. Gather and mingle from 6:00-6.45 pm and then from 6.45-8:00 pm local experts will participate in a panel discussion on how to use social media and other digital media to engage your audience and tell your story. The panelists include Kristen Gill, owner of Kristen Gill Travel Writing & Photography, and Kate O'Neill and Chuck Leach, co-owners at Social Sky Marketing. The discussion will be moderated by Fiona Remley, VP and Director of Program Management at Wunderman Seattle. For more information, visit Irish Network Seattle.
FÉILE PORTLAND - The Irish Cultural Society of the Pacific Northwest hosts Féile Portland on Saturday and Sunday, November 14-15, at A Renaissance School of Arts and Sciences in southwest Portland. The Féile is a celebration featuring workshops in Irish Gaelic, sean-nós singing and sean-nós dancing, with guest instructors including native Irish speaker and singer Máirín Uí Chéide and Seattle-based dancer Alicia Guinn. For details, visit .
IRISH FILM - A new Irish movie BROOKLYN hits Seattle theaters on November 20. Starring Irish actress Saoirse Ronan, the film tells the profoundly moving story of a young Irish immigrant navigating her way through 1950s Brooklyn. The initial homesickness is diminished by a romance, but soon her past forces her to choose between Ireland and the US. The film is based on the book by the same title by Colm Toibin and USA Today says of the movie, " If you want to join the awards conversation, you'd better learn how to say Saoirse Ronan," whileThe Guardian says, What a moving, emotionally intelligent and refreshingly old-fashioned movie this is .
FREE PASSES - A limited number of free admission passes are available to a preview screening of BROOKLYN at Pacific Place Cinema (downtown Seattle) on November 17 at 7:30 pm. To register for the passes (each good for two admissions, while they last), follow the prompts at foxsearchlightscreenings.

CELTIC YULETIDE  - Magical Strings' 37th Annual Celtic Yuletide Concert series starts November 28 in Kingston and Seattle's concert will be December 12 with Tacoma's on December 11. Concerts will also be held in Kent, Mount Vernon, Bellevue, Portland and Leavenworth. Featuring the lyrical and joyful sounds of Celtic harps, hammered dulcimers, violins, cello, whistles, concertina, percussion and more, this grand gala of Celtic-inspired holiday music is filled with Irish singing, dancing, juggling, caroling and storytelling. For the details, visit .
SENIORS' LUNCHEON - The Irish Seniors' Christmas Luncheon will be at Noon on Saturday, December 5, at F X McRory's, 419 Occidental Ave S, Seattle. All seniors of Irish birth, descent or interest are welcome along with their spouses and friends. Our Special Guest on the day is Daidí na Nollag (Father Christmas). Over 400 different Irish seniors, the majority of them Irish-born, have attended these luncheons over the past six years. Sit-down lunch w/ choice of Ham or Turkey at $10 per person ($20 non-seniors) - please email or call reservations to 206-915-1878 (include lunch choices and the full names of any guests).
IRISH SOUNDERS - Two different soccer players with the Seattle Sounders say they would like to play for Ireland. Lamar Neagle already has an Irish passport through his Irish-born grandmother, and Sounders Nation   says the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) is seriously interested in Neagle. Another Irish citizen Sounders player, Aaron Kovar whose mother is from Dublin, told Ireland's RT É -TV that he would like to play for Ireland. He was interviewed by RTÉ-TV   while attending the reception in Seattle for Irish President Michael D. Higgins. The FAI has been scouting North America for a while, and current Ireland captain and LA Galaxy forward Robbie Keane has been helping recruit players from Major League Soccer.
CONGRATS - Congratulations to Seattleite Micheál Keane and Melissa Ryan from Kentucky who were married in Washington, DC, on September 26. Both are heavily involved in politics. Under the heading OBAMA WORLD WEEKEND WEDDINGS, says Ryan is an alumnus of Feingold 2010, Obama 2012, EMILY's List, and she currently works at Trilogy Interactive providing strategic communication and technology for political campaigns and causes . Keane was one of the first staffers on the ground in Iowa for then-Senator Barack Obama in 2007 as Voter File Manager. He ran the data team for the general election effort in Florida in 2008 and most recently spent three years at the newly created Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. He currently works as a Data Scientist at Civis Analytics, a firm that specializes in political campaign targeting. The couple will live in DC.
RIVERDANCE - If you were among those attending one of the recent Riverdance shows at the Paramount in Seattle, one of the dancers was former Tara Academy dancer Julia Gats. Julia joined the cast of Riverdance last summer after a successful audition in Dublin and has already toured the UK, Germany, Austria, and Japan with the show and just returned from spending the summer performing at the Gaiety Theatre in Dublin. Julia started her Irish dance classes with Seattle's Tara Academy when she was 6 years old!
GOFUNDME - Denise Ryan, a young woman from Dublin, recently returned to Ireland after receiving treatment in Seattle for illnesses she developed after contracting Lyme disease while living in Canada. Her condition went untreated for four years due to misdiagnosis and her i mmune system, organs, digestive and central nervous system are under constant attack . She has already raised almost $50,000 and hopes to raise $65,000 to cover her treatments. If you can help go to
  • The next Irish Book Club meeting is Sunday afternoon, November 15 with the location to be determined. Contact for meeting details
  • Seattle's local Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann (CCE) branch organizes dance sets on Sunday nights from 7 to 9 pm at St. Elizabeth's Anglican Church, 1005 SW 152nd St, Burien.For details call Jim Belcher at 425-402-8363
  • The Catholic Northwest magazine has a nice article headlined St. Patrick finally gets his due with statue at namesake Kent cemetery
  • Seattle's Police Chief Kathleen O'Toole told the Irish Times that it was her belief that Irish people do not want the Gardai (Irish Police) to be routinely armed
  • The Seattle Times had an interview with Irish writer Emma Donoghue about her 2010 novel "Room" which is told through the eyes of a five-year-old boy who's grown up as a prisoner
  • Paddy Noonan has an Irish cruise to Alaska departing Seattle on May 28 featuring Irish musicians Jimmy Walsh, Tommy Mulvihill, PJ Cardinal and others. Email

IRISH FLAGS - Buy any Irish-themed flag from our Seattle partner, Seattle Flagmakers, and they will make a donation to the Irish Heritage Club to support our activities.

Seattle Visit of
Irish President
Michael D. Higgins
Irish President Michael D. Higgins visited Seattle in late October on an eight day trip to the US west coast. He spent four days in Seattle arriving directly from Ireland on Tuesday, October 20, and left for San Francisco on Saturday afternoon, October 24.
Wednesday, October 21

The President's first full day in Seattle was relatively quiet, providing the 74 year old President and his wife Sabina an opportunity to recover from a long trip by commercial flight from Ireland. However, the President did pay a courtesy call on Seattle Mayor Ed Murray at City Hall and followed that with a news conference for local and Irish media. That was followed by a casual private visit to Seattle's Pike Place Market.
Thursday, October 22

The main purpose of the President's visit was to connect with Seattle's Irish community and his first official activity in that regard was on Thursday morning when he visited Skyline High School in Sammamish. There he watched about 30 young people playing Gaelic Football as part of their PE program. The school is one of seven high schools in the Seattle area where GAA sports have been taught as part of the PE curriculum for the past five years. At Skyline, the President also visited music and jazz classes and spoke to about 300 students in the auditorium before exiting through the school's cafeteria to the cheers and claps of about 1,000 kids.
That afternoon the President visited Microsoft where he was given a tour of the Home of the Future before meeting with about 150 Irish-born employees. He told them that, because of modern communications, they should expect that current Irish migration will be increasingly circular migration to and from Ireland.
That evening he was honored at an Irish Community Reception at McCaw Hall that was attended by about 400 members of Seattle's Irish community and also included some who had traveled from Spokane, Portland, Kennewick and Vancouver, BC.
Friday, October 23

On Friday, the President gave a keynote address in a packed auditorium at the University of Washington (UW) on the topic of climate change and sustainable development challenges. The talk was hosted by, among others, the Jackson School of International Studies, the Center for West European Studies and the UW Law School. Before the talk, he met with fifteen UW faculty members who were born in Ireland.

That afternoon, the President was guest of honor at an Irish Seniors Reception attended by about 120 people. There he joked about feeling more at home with the seniors because he was finally meeting with people his own age!
The President's last official function in Seattle was as guest of honor at a formal dinner organized by Irish Network Seattle at the Chihuly Boathouse. The dinner was hosted by the Mayor of Seattle and glass artist Dale Chihuly, the glass sculptor and entrepreneur whose works are considered unique to the field of blown glass.  

Here are links to photos and videos from the President's Seattle visit:
The links can also be found on the Irish Heritage Club's website at Please note that we have permission to use these photos for personal use, but do make sure to credit the photographer.
News from Ireland
GROWING ECONOMY - The Wall Street Journal Blog asks "Is Ireland's Economy Really Growing Almost as Quickly as China's?" and notes that while relatively small, Ireland's economy is one of the most globalized on earth, hosting a variety of multinational companies that account for a large share of its economic output. Central Statistics Office figures showed that GDP rose by 1.4% from the final three months of 2014, and by a staggering 6.5% from a year earlier, not far short of China's growth rate during the same period. "That performance puts Ireland on track to record the fastest expansion in Europe for the second straight year, and possibly the strongest growth for a developed economy globally. "
WOMEN CANDIDATES - Over 30% of candidates already selected for Ireland's upcoming general election (expected in March) are women . Only 86 women (15%) were candidates in the 2011 General Election out of 566 total candidates . Irish political parties in future general elections must have 30% of their candidates women or the party will lose half of their annual government funding. Of the total 4744 Dáil (Parliament) seats filled since the first election in 1918, only 260 (6%) have been occupied by women, and altogether only 92 women have ever served as TDs (members of the Irish Parliament).
GOOGLE INVESTMENTS - Google is building a new data center in Ireland and investing $161 million in the project. The Irish climate is seen as ideal for the development of data centers as it makes use of the cool outside air to cool the facilities all year round, resulting in energy efficiencies. Ireland already has a number of large data centers including those owned by Amazon, IBM and Yahoo. Google has been investing heavily in Ireland. Between 2010 and 2012, it spent $322 million on the initial buildings in the Barrow Street area of Dublin, which has now become known as Silicon Docks, and in 2014, it spent $70 million on Grand Mill Quay.
MICROSOFT INVESTMENT - Construction work is underway on Microsoft Ireland's new $100 million campus building in Leopardstown at the foot of the Dublin Mountains. The project will support up to 2,100 jobs and is expected to be completed in May 2017. Microsoft is currently celebrating its 30th anniversary in Ireland and two years ago also built a new $230 million data center in Dublin.
INNOVATIVE IRELAND - Ireland is the world's eighth most innovative country out of 141 economies measured across the world according to the Global Innovation Index 2015. The Index consists of a ranking of world economies' innovation capabilities and results, recognizing the key role of innovation as a driver of economic growth and prosperity. The GII includes indicators that go beyond the traditional measures of innovation such as the level of research and development. The US is in 5th place in the ranking.
LIMERICK UBER - Uber is opening its first European office in Limerick bringing 300 new jobs to the city. Uber connects passengers who need rides with a network of drivers in cities across the world with their Uber apps. Limerick is the first such hub outside the US, and will cater for customers in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
COST COMPARISON - According to a 2015 cost comparison report, Dublin is ranked as the 28th most expensive city worldwide, and number 10 in Europe. The international survey is based on contributions from people around the world, and measures costs such as: how far you can travel for $1 worth of petrol, or how much beer you can drink for the equivalent of $1. Living in Seattle is listed as costing about the same as Dublin, while New York is 34% more expensive than Dublin, and London is 42% more expensive.
PRESS FREEDOM - The 2015 World Press Freedom Index covers 178 countries, and Ireland is ranked in 11th place ahead of the US (49th) and the UK (34th). The Index is an annual ranking of countries compiled and published by Reporters Without Borders. The rankings r eflect the degree of freedom that  journalists, news organizations, and citizens enjoy in each country, and the efforts made by the authorities to respect and ensure respect for that freedom.
TRUMP PROPOSALS - An Irish government minister has criticized Donald Trump's proposal to scrap the J-1 visa program if he becomes US president next year. As part of his immigration reform policies published earlier this week, Trump committed to 'terminate' the J-1 visa jobs program which has become a rite of passage for thousands of Irish students every summer. The scheme allows full-time third level students to enter the US on a J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa. Students are allowed to travel to the USA and work here legally for up to four months. The abolition of the program is just one of a number of Trump's proposed reforms that could have an impact on Irish people visiting, living and working in the US. There are an estimated 50,000 undocumented Irish people living in the US who could face deportation under Trump's plans.
CHEAP HEAT - A feasibility study will determine whether excess heat produced by the Guinness Brewery in Dublin could be recycled and used to heat the new $700 million National Children's Hospital. The planned Hospital campus will cater for almost 75,000 patients a year as well as providing research facilities and accommodation for families. The study will explore pumping hot water or steam from the Guinness brewery to the new hospital and the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland is also involved to help ensure that the most efficient heating systems are installed.
DRUGS DECRIMINALIZATION - An Irish government Minister says that by decriminalizing drugs, addicts are less likely to wind up behind bars and more likely to receive treatment, and by opening centers where medical professionals oversee injection, drug addiction can be diverted to safer, controlled settings. So in 2016, Ireland plans to decriminalize personal use possession of marijuana, cocaine, and heroin , but it will remain a crime to profit from either the sale or distribution of such drugs . In order to reduce the stigma of addiction, medically-supervised injection rooms will also be made available to drug users in Dublin, Galway, Cork, and Limerick.
FEWER COINS - Ireland's Central Bank is phasing out one and two cent coins from widespread circulation. The coins will remain legal tender, but they will soon become as distant a memory as the farthing which was last minted in 1959. Since adopting the Euro on January 1, 1999, about $32 million worth of one and two cent coins have been minted, accounting for 85% of all coin production in Ireland. Just over 1 billion two-cent coins have been issued into circulation along with 1.38 billion one-cent coins. The pricing on items will not change but transactions will be rounded up or down to the nearest five cents. However, there will be no rounding up or down on credit card transactions.
TRANSATLANTIC CABLE - A new transatlantic fiber-optic cable , owned and operated by Irish company Aqua Comms, is being laid running along the ocean bed from Killala, Co. Mayo on Ireland's west coast, to Long Island, NY. The new cable has the capacity to carry one third of the world's telephone calls and all of the internet traffic for Europe and America. Costing about $300 million to install, the new cable system will go live early in 2016 .
AER LINGUS - After the company's shareholders accepted an offer from British Airways owner IAG, Aer Lingus's last day as a stand-alone company was August 18th, although the airline will continue to operate under the name Aer Lingus. The Irish airline's maiden flight was on May 27th 1936 when a six-seater De Havilland Dragon named 'Iolar' (Eagle) carried five passengers across the Irish Sea from Dublin to Bristol. The plane used by Aer Lingus for its inaugural flight, but which was no longer in its service, was later shot down over Bristol during WW-11.The airline's first transatlantic service left Dublin and Shannon for New York on 8 April 1958.
CULTURE NIGHT - More than 900 venues in towns and cities around Ireland opened their doors to the public for free admission on Friday September 18 for the tenth year of Culture Night. More than 40 towns and cities across Ireland were home to performances and demonstrations free to the public at museums, galleries, observatories and government buildings. All events were free and over 350,000 people took part.
HEANEY EPITAPH - Seamus Heaney's famous line to "walk on air against your better judgement" has been inscribed as an epitaph on his headstone. The quote, from Heaney's 1995 Nobel Prize for Literature acceptance speech, was placed over the poet's grave in Bellaghy, Co Derry. Heaney, who died two years ago aged 74, was Ireland's best known contemporary writer. The line is taken from the final stanza of The Gravel Walks, the full verse of which reads:
So walk on air against your better judgement
Establishing yourself somewhere in between
Those solid batches mixed with grey cement
And a tune called The Gravel Walks that conjures green.
NINA MYTH? - 13 years ago, an Illinois History Professor published a controversial paper 'No Irish Need Apply: A Myth of Victimisation' claiming that "No one has ever seen one of these NINA (No Irish Need Apply) signs because they were extremely rare or nonexistent". The New York Times has now proven definitively that the NINA phrase was in widespread use in the middle of the 19th century in the US. The paper identified at least 29 examples of the phrase in its own NYT classified advertisements. A variation, "Irish need not apply," turned up at least seven times, and there were other examples, from "No Irishman need apply" to "Irishmen need not apply" to the phrase "No Irish." The paper identified a row of classified advertisements from May 1st, 1855 all of which requested a Protestant for housekeeping duties, something seen at the time as aimed at excluding Irish Catholic immigrants. The New York Times rebuttal comes on the heels of a similar rebuttal by a High School student at the Sidwell Friends School in Washington, Dc, who also disproved the Professor's claims.
OPEN GOLF - For the first time in 68 years, the British Open Golf Championship will be played on the island of Ireland. In July 2019, Royal Portrush in Co. Down will host the Open, just the second time the event has been staged outside England or Scotland. The last time was in 1951, also at Royal Portrush. The staging of the 2012 Irish Open at the famed Antrim links when more than 100,000 fans attended appears to have convinced the Royal & Ancient, golf's governing body . There is now a real possibility the Open could in the near future beheld on a course in the Irish Republic.
NO CHARGE - Gerry Adams, leader of the Sinn Féin party, will not face prosecution over the 1972 abduction and murder of Jean McConville by the IRA. Adams was arrested and jailed for four days in in May 2014 on suspicion of his connection to the murder. As the widowed mother of 10 children, McConville's murder in 1972 was one of the most controversial of the 3,000 deaths in the three decades of the Troubles.
IRISH EMIGRATION - More than one in six Irish-born people are now living outside Ireland, according to an analysis from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development which found 17.5% of people over the age of 15 who were born in Ireland were residing overseas in 2014. The report said the latest recession in Ireland caused emigration to re-surge after a period of high immigration and low emigration during the Celtic Tiger, and the "resulting population outflow has been large, both by international and Irish historical standards". A total of 80,900 people of all nationalities moved out of Ireland in the 12 months to April, 35,300 of whom were Irish nationals.
PLOUGHING - The National Ploughing Championships were held in Co. Laois in September and had 281,000 attendees and over 1,500 exhibitors. T he three-day event had some ploughing competitions while also showcasing everything from farm machinery to food products, livestock and fashion. It is Europe's largest Outdoor Exhibition and Agricultural Trade Show. For more information, visit
PRIMARK - Irish company Primark has opened its first US store in Boston, the first of eight locations planned to open in the US by the end of 2016 . The conglomerate started in Dublin in 1969 and now employs over 57,000 people and operates over 287 stores around the world. Still operating as Penneys in Ireland and as Primark outside Ireland, there will be nine Primark stores in the US by the end of 2016. The company claims it offers 'amazing fashion, amazing prices' for people under 35 .
MITCHELL SCHOLARS - Northern Ireland's government has ended funding for the George J. Mitchell Scholarship program, a consequence of the ongoing budget impasse between the Northern Ireland executive and the British government. The program was created to introduce future American leaders to Ireland through one year of graduate study at institutions of higher learning on the island. Each year, 300 Americans between the ages of 18 and 30 apply for twelve postgraduate scholarships to study in Ireland and Northern Ireland, but for now the scholarship students must attend a university in the Irish Republic.
RIGHTS AWARD - Co. Cork's disability rights activist, Joanne O' Riordan, has been awarded a prestigious global youth award called The Outstanding Young Person of the World. Born with the condition Tetra-amelia syndrome, a congenital disorder characterized by the absence of all four limbs , Joanne is one of the top ten young people in the world receiving the award presented by Junior Chamber International (JCI). Joanne has addressed the UN on the importance of technology in her life and is currently in the process of working with Trinity College to create a robot to help her with everyday tasks. Previous winners of the International award include John F Kennedy, Jackie Chan, and Henry Kissinger.
SPEAKTALKCHAT - An Irish Company based in Galway has a video-chatting site where members chat with others based on their shared interests. One of the interest groups is an Irish language and culture group and the global Irish diaspora is invited to register and chat. SPEAKTALKCHAT currently has a global membership with over 30 languages and 100 interest groups. And it's completely free.
MAUREEN O'HARA - Tributes have been paid from all over the world to Maureen O'Hara after her death on October 24. She will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery tomorrow beside her late husband US Air Force Brig. Gen. Charles Blair . A Dubliner by birth who spent many years in Co Cork , Maureen O'Hara was one of Ireland's true Hollywood greats, and her prolific career included starring roles in The Quiet Man and Miracle on 34th Street. She was born Maureen FitzSimons in 1920 in Dublin and is survived by her daughter Bronwyn FitzSimons who lives in Ireland and is also an actress.
Ó CONAIRE - The damaged life-sized limestone statue of Pádraic Ó Conaire that has stood in Galway's Eyre Square since 1935, has been taken to Dublin where a bronze replica will be made to be installed in the statue's original location . Ó Conaire was the author of Irish language books and was Ireland's first professional prose writer in Irish. He was born in Galway in 1882 and was reared by his grandparents after the death of his parents. His best known work, M'Asal Beag Dubh, comprises essays in Irish on the delights of open air life and is very familiar to all Irish schoolchildren. He spent his final years teaching Irish in Galway and left only a pipe, tobacco and an apple behind at his death in 1928.
MILLELLIUM SKELETON - Archaeologists have discovered the remains of a young man who died almost a millennium ago. The skeletal remains   were found among the roots of a massive beech tree which toppled over at Collooney, Co Sligo. The centuries-old tree toppled in a storm, ripping the upper half of the skeleton up into the air. Radiocarbon dates indicate the young man died violently between 1030 and 1200 AD and had been given a Christian burial.
GARDA EIREANNACH - London's Irish Guards will compete in London's Gaelic Football championships in 2016, becoming the first British army regiment to compete as a club within the GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association). Garda Eireannach, as they call themselves, already has a 45 member panel made up of Irish players, players of Irish descent and those who just want to play the sport. The Irish Guards regiment was founded in 1901 by Queen Victoria and their colonel-in-chief is Prince William. Until 2001, members of the British security forces were banned from membership in the GAA.
WELFARE FRAUD - Research indicates that fraud is involved in about 3% of Irish welfare benefit payments, but new facial recognition software has helped Irish authorities detect dozens of attempts by fraudsters to claim benefits by using multiple identities. During the new registration process for benefits, new software searches the applicant's photograph against existing photographs on the Department's database to ensure the person has not registered previously.
DON'T MISS - Six Irish tourist sites have been named on Lonely Planet's 'Ultimate Travelist', a list of the world's "top must-see sights of all time" . The six are The Giant's Causeway, Brú na Bóinne (Newgrange and the other megalithic sites in Co. Meath), the Cliffs of Moher, Titanic Belfast, Dublin's Trinity College and the Rock of Cashel.
FRIENDLY GALWAY - According to the readers of US magazine Travel + Leisure, Seattle's sister city of Galway is the world's friendliest city, and three Irish cities make the top ten. Galway took the highest accolade due to its festive nature, lively population and "musicality". The cover article says Friendliness, be it instinctual hospitality, or a warm smile at every storefront, does a lot to make a city more accessible to travelers. Dublin was rated 3rd and Cork 4th on the list.
FRIENDLY DUBLIN - Twitter users think Dublin is the friendliest tourist destination in the world to visit. Dublin received the most Twitter praise for having welcoming people and was classed as the second most enjoyable destination in the world after the French resort of Nice. The research was conducted by travel site which analyzed thousands of tweets. It took nine popular phrases used by travelers to describe a location on social media, such as 'beautiful sunset', 'amazing views', 'delicious food', 'great weather' and 'friendly locals' to discover which destinations generate the greatest level of positive sentiment.
MORE FRIENDLY - According to Condé Nast Traveler, Dublin is the second friendliest city in the world , up from 5th in 2014 . Dublin was also voted favorite worldwide city at the Trazee awards in Florida  recently . The awards are organized by, an online publication, owned by Global Traveler magazine, targeting travelers aged 18-35. At the same Trazee awards, Irish airline Aer Lingus was named "favorite airline in Europe".
VISIT DUBLIN - In the Lonely Planet's Best in Travel 2016, Dublin is in third place on the list of the Top 10 Places To Visit In 2016. The book said next year would be "a particularly good time" to visit Dublin because of the 1916 centenary celebrations. "Dublin is now a truly cosmopolitan capital, with an influx of people, energy and ideas infusing the ever-beguiling, multi-layered city with fresh flavors and kaleidoscopic colors". A spokesperson adds "The city is truly buoyant; whilst also boasting inner green spaces and wild outdoor arenas along the coast. 2016 really is the time to go."
CHEAPER DUBLIN - According to The Post Office Travel Money Report, Dublin is the cheapest of 16 cities for tourists seeking cultural breaks. The report compares the total cost of visiting six cultural attractions in each city: a museum, art gallery, heritage attraction, ballet, opera and a classical concert, and compared prices in 16 European capitals and New York. The Dublin sites included were the National Museum, National Gallery and Trinity College's Old Library and Book of Kells exhibit. Cultural events used for the calculations included performances of Swan Lake in the Gaiety and Madame Butterfly in the Helix. Taking in these events would cost €100 ($107). Similar outings in London would cost $426, making it the most expensive of the European cities.
#1 TOURIST ATTRACTION - At the Europe Gala Awards in Sardinia, Italy, Dublin's Guinness Storehouse was named as Europe's leading tourist attraction, beating out the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Colosseum in Rome, and the Acropolis in Greece, among othersBy winning this award, the Storehouse is automatically in the running to be named as the world's leading tourist attraction. The World Travel Awards serve to acknowledge, reward and celebrate excellence across all sectors of the global travel and tourism industry.
IRISH HEDGEROWS - Ireland doesn't have much forest but does have hedgerows. Planted since the 18th century by landowners, they run to a length of about 186,400 miles and cover about 1,750 square miles, or 6.4% of the country. They act as wildlife corridors, allowing species to get from one area to another safely; birds use them for nesting, bats for navigation. They provide an important source of food for animals, being full of fruit bearing plants and trees such as hawthorn, blackberry, rowan, apple and plum. Hundreds of species of pollinating and predatory insects depend on the hedgerows.
WONDERFUL HURLING - The New York Times has a great story on the Irish game of Hurling, headlined A Passion for Hurling, the All-Ireland Game . About one of the founders of the Gaelic Athletic Association, it says: Cusack saw hurling as something almost beyond sports, and he wrote about it with unbridled reverie. "A hurling match is like a city on fire, where the crackling of burning timber and the hissing of the flames swell into the roar of conflagration," he once wrote. "We never heard sweeter music than that of the hurling field."
IRISH JEWS - 14 volumes of genealogical lists of Irish-Jewish families, containing the names of 53,000 Jewish people who have lived in Ireland since the 17th century, can be accessed online at The files contain records of births, marriages and deaths, and include details of where people are buried, the schools they went to and details of Jewish households from both the 1901 and 1911 censuses. Although the Jewish population in Ireland now is relatively small, about 2,000, it was much larger in the past and thousands of Jewish people around the world have a connection to Ireland.
SHAW BEQUEST - George Bernard Shaw, the Dublin-born Nobel-Prize-winning playwright and critic  who died in 1950 aged 94, left a third of his posthumous royalties to the National Gallery of Ireland . He had spent many happy hours wandering through the gallery's rooms as a young man, calling it the "cherished asylum of my boyhood" . The gallery will continue to receive royalties from Shaw's works until 2020, which will be 70 years after Shaw's death.
CHOLERA VICTIM - The bones of victims of a cholera epidemic in the 1830s have been uncovered during works for a light-rail line at Broadstone, Dublin. The Great Cholera Epidemic of 1832 killed thousands across Ireland and, due to overcrowded conditions, Dublin's inhabitants were particularly vulnerable. The outbreak also killed hundreds of thousands in the UK, France, Germany, Hungary and Egypt before moving on to the US and Canada.
THE GOBBINS - A dramatic walk along a cliff face near Islandmagee in Co. Antrim, that was built more than a century ago and was closed in the 1950s, has reopened to the public after a multi-million dollar renovation. The Gobbins coastal path was first opened in 1902 and quickly became famous as a white knuckle walk providing a close encounter with waves and wildlife. The path is carved into black basalt cliffs and is connected by a network of walkways and bridges. The strenuous walk allows visitors to see coastal birds such as puffins, guillemots, kittiwakes and sometimes porpoises up close. See for more details.
FRONGOCH - President Michael D. Higgins has been invited to the Welsh village of Frongoch in 2016 to mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. Frongoch, in the middle of Wales, became famous after the Easter Rising when 1,800 Irish republican prisoners were sent there in June 1916. It became known as the "university of revolution" and Michael Collins once said that Frongoch was where the guerilla tactics, which would lead to Ireland's War of Independence, were first discussed "at English expense" . The camp was also called Ollscoil na Réabhlóide , the "University of Revolution".
FOREIGN-BORN STUDENTS - Almost 45,000 foreign-born students were enrolled at Irish high schools in 2014, with more than half of them hailing from just five countries. 22.5% of the foreign students were born in the UK, followed by Poland (15%), Lithuania (5.7%), the US (5.5%) and Nigeria(5.2%). Altogether over 140 different countries are represented with some other students listed as being of "other countries of birth". As an example, 46 different nationalities are represented in Adamstown Community College, a high-school in Lucan outside Dublin which currently has 875 students.
IRISH NAMES - Speaking about the flood of migrants entering Europe, the European Commission president recently commented on how emigration has affected the world, saying: "The number of O'Neills and Murphys living in the US exceeds by far those living in Ireland." The number of Murphys in the US was 300,501 at the time of the 2000 census compared to around 55,000 in Ireland . Also in the US in 2000 there were 260,385 Kellys, 139,335 Ryans, 115,385 O'Briens and 103,216 people named Walsh, far more than there are in Ireland. Verify how many households in 19th century Ireland had your surname.
THE BURREN - The Burren in Co. Clare is sometimes described as being a 'lunar landscape', a massive sheet of bare rock intersected by deep fissures. However, a wide variety of habitats exist there, from bare limestone pavements to orchid-rich calcareous grasslands, limestone heaths, scrub and woodlands, wet grasslands, turloughs, calcareous springs and fens.  Over the past five years, farmers participating in the Burren Life Program have received $5 million in payments for their role in the improved environmental health of the area. For more information visit and scroll through the photos at
IRISH RACING'S ROYALTY - Read a rare behind the scenes look at Ballydoyle and Coolmore  which are among the best horse training grounds and stud farms in the world. Ballydoyle  is a racehorse training facility located in Co. Tipperary and is a sister thoroughbred facility to the nearby Coolmore Stud. The current trainer at Ballydoyle is Aidan O'Brien: "O'Brien knows the value of the Kingdom that he's ruled since 1996, and nothing that disturbs it's perfectly pitched rhythms will be tolerated."
GOLFER OF THE YEAR - Irish Golfer Leona Maguire, a native of Co. Cavan, has been named the 2015 winner of the Mark H. McCormack Medal as the female player ranked number one in the World Amateur Golf Ranking. The 20-year-old, who this Fall started her second year at Duke University in North Carolina, won three College tournaments in 2015. In May she received the 2015 ANNIKA Award and was declared WGCA National Player of the Year as the best golfer in American women's college golf.
HERITAGE CERTIFICATES - The Irish Government has stopped selling Certificates of Irish Heritage. The scheme granted certificates to descendants of Irish citizens who didn't themselves qualify for Irish citizenship, but were willing to pay to prove their Irish roots. Although the certificates are no longer for sale, the Government will continue to present them to high-profile members of the Irish diaspora.
DUBLIN WAY - The Dublin Mountains Way, running from Shankill to Tallaght, is featured in '1001 Walks You Must Experience Before You Die', a new guide book by travel writer, Barry Stone. About 25 miles long, the walk encompasses mountain trails, country paths and rural roads as it winds its way towards the suburbs, and in the guide is graded as "strenuous".  A rest break on the walk is suggested at Johnnie Fox's in Glencullen, established in 1798 and one of the oldest pubs in Ireland. It is also renowned for being the highest pub in the country, and is surrounded by the beautiful scenery of the Dublin Mountains.
ATOMIC WITNESS - Among those who witnessed the atomic bomb which dropped on Hiroshima 70 years ago was an Irish nun from Co. Galway. She had emigrated to America in 1921 and joined the Society of the Helpers of the Holy Souls in New York ten years later. In 1939 at the age of 46 she was posted to a convent in Hiroshima. She was initially detained by the Japanese for seven months before being freed after convincing the Japanese that she was Irish and not English. Sr. Julia lived to the age of 94 and died in Toyko in 1987.
IRELAND ON SCREEN - Six Oscar winning films have been shot in Ireland along with several other major films. See information on some of the films and an Ireland on Screen Map. Couple that with a Game of Thrones Itinerary through the most memorable locations from that show at got-itinerary.
IRISH REVOLUTIONARIES - Two Irish people, Mother Jones and James Connolly, have been listed among the world's 10 Best Revolutionaries . Mother Jones, born Mary Harris Jones in Co. Cork, later became known as "the most dangerous woman in America". She was a teacher and dressmaker who was an organizer for the United Mine Workers union before co-founding the Industrial Workers of the World. She fought against child labor and coordinated strikes by miners and silk workers. Although born in Scotland, James Connolly founded the Irish Socialist Republican party and helped organize the Dublin transport strike of 1913 that led to the Easter Rising three years later. His Irish Citizen Army was involved in the rising, after which Connolly was executed by the British. Connolly actually met Mother Jones in America in the early 1900s when both were very active in labor struggles.
IRISH BEATLES - At the unveiling of a Yellow Submarine tapestry at Ellis Island, U2's B ono claimed John Lennon as Irish. "Let's claim him. In fact, let's claim all the Beatles not as immigrants but as Irish," Bono said. He referred to the Irish parentage of all four of the Beatles, describing Lennon as "one more Irish immigrant on an island full of Irish immigrants". The tapestry unveiling marks the 40th anniversary of Lennon getting his green card. Lennon was born in Liverpool, England.
SLIOTAR CONFORMITY - The GAA are planning to introduce a standardized sliotar (hurling ball) in hurling by 2017. Each sliotar will have a microchip that can send a signal to ensure all cores are exactly the same - reducing the chance of varying weights and differences between suppliers. There are presently 32 approved sliotar suppliers.
BLUE LIGHTS - Bioluminescent plankton have been turning the sea a spectacular shade of blue  at Derrynane beach off Kerry's Skellig Coast. Phosphorescence is a natural phenomenon caused by bioluminescent plankton emitting eerie swathes of blue light. When the wind is stiff enough to raise the swell bringing crashing waves to the beach front, this 'excites' the plankton, which in turn emit the light in their millions.
ZIP CODES UNNECESSARY! - A letter mailed to: "Your man Henderson, that boy with the glasses who is doing a PhD up here at Queen's in Belfast, Buncrana, County Donegal, Ireland," was delivered to the right person by the postal carrier in the town of Buncrana which has a population of about 7,000 people. Another letter was mailed to : "Mr Sean Hussey (Singer), Longford. Don't know full address only that he sings like Neil Diamond just heard him on Shannonside today," and it was also delivered to the right person in Longford which has a population of 9,600.
GALWAY RENTAL - Fully furnished townhouse for rent in Galway City, Ireland, located in Lower Salthill just 400 yards from the Seapoint Promenade on Galway Bay. 3 furnished bedrooms, sleeps six. Available in May and June 2015 for $425 per week (plus an additional 10% reduction for IHC members). See photos and more details at, or contact Mike or Sheila at

*   Ireland's industrial production surged ahead of other European Union countries in June with  growth of 27.6% compared to an average increase of 1.7% across the 28 EU countries
*   The Wall Street Journal wonders,
*   Last year, at 38%, Ireland had the third highest share of third level graduates among the 28 European Union countries
*   Ireland's jobless rate has dropped to a six-year low of 9.5%
*   Google now employs over 5,000 people in Dublin, making it one of Dublin's largest employers
*   The Irish tech worker's average salary of $69,979 now comes second only to the financial sector's average of $71,763
*   Ireland has the youngest population in Europe with 40% of the population under 29
*   The Guinness Storehouse in Dublin topped the list of Irish tourism attractions last year with 1,269,000 visitors - the highest visitor total ever recorded for any Irish tourist attraction
*   Galway, with a population of almost 76,000, is the most multicultural city in Ireland with 19.4% of its residents born outside Ireland in more than 35 different countries
*   There are over 1 million people currently in full time education in Ireland
*   In 2014 over 255,000 students participated in third level courses across Ireland's universities and colleges
*   90% of passengers on Dublin buses always say thank you to their driver when exiting the bus
*   Dublin's 90 new double-decker buses have dedicated spaces for both baby strollers and wheelchairs, and a CCTV monitor that allows passengers to see vacant seats on the upper deck
*   In 2014, a total of 629,446 Irish passports were issued
*   Irish airline Ryanair claims to be the first airline to carry more than 10 million international passengers in a month after carrying that number on its planes in July.
*   Guinness stout accounts for 34% of the total volume share of the alcohol market in the Republic of Ireland, and its share in Northern Ireland is 19.8%
*   When the British military authorities dispatched the HMS Helga up the river Liffey in Dublin on April 25th, 1916, to shell insurgent positions, two Irish crewmen on board refused to assist
*   Check out an Irish Climbers guide to the more than 100 sea stacks off the coast of Donegal
*   The average Irish person eats 16.3 pounds of chocolate every year
*   Run by two Irishmen, the Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog on Water Street in New York's financial district, was recently crowned the world's best bar
*   An Irish Times columnist billing himself as Barfly travels to every county in Ireland to write about Ireland's best pubs
*   Irish brewery Guinness revealed this week that it will stop using fish guts when making its dark stout
*   In the first GOP debate on CNN, some Irish Americans were insulted by Jeb Bush's pick of Margaret Thatcher for the $10 bill
*   The NY Times reports that Irish and Scottish designers dominated at the London Fashion Week
*   The Irish game of Hurling returns to Boston's Fenway Park on November 22
*   One Direction's Niall Horan, the band's Co. Westmeath born leader, told his 23 million Twitter followers that the four-piece band will be going on an extended break in 2016
*   In 2014, Ireland's Department of Foreign Affairs issued 3,099 civil letters of freedom for 99 countries, certifying that a citizen was free to marry or enter a civil partnership
*   The Irish Times writes about Butte, Montana
*   Actor Jim Carrey last month attended the funeral in Co. Tipperary of his ex-girlfriend, Cathriona White, and helped carry her coffin to the cemetery

Irish Heritage Club Membership

We invite you to renew your membership in the Irish Heritage Club for 2016. All 2015 Memberships expire on December 31 although members remain in good standing with the organization until March 31, 2016. Membership is used to support all IHC activities throughout the year, including the St. Patrick's Day Parade and the Irish Festival, and is open to anyone interested in "Things Irish". Dues are $20 (single membership), $30 (family membership), or $100 (business membership), and you can pay by cash, check, or Credit Card. For more information, email  or visit .
Seanfhocal - Proverb

Is cuma le fear na mbróg cá leagann sé a chos
The man with the boots doesn't mind where he places his foot 

John Keane