1916/2016: A miscellany

A diary for March 11th, 1916, and March 11th, 2016

Roger Casement: had unsuccessfully attempted to raise an Irish Brigade in 1915.

Roger Casement: had unsuccessfully attempted to raise an Irish Brigade in 1915.

 

March 11th, 1916 The fate of the Irish prisoners at Limburg was exercising the attentions of the central advisory committee of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers. The committee met to consider its response to the 362 men of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers imprisoned in Limburg where Roger Casement had unsuccessfully attempted to raise an Irish Brigade the previous year.

Of the 362, 192 had been “adopted by kind friends” who had provided them with regular parcels of food. The remainder of the prisoners of war received a weekly parcel from 10 Leinster Street. During the month of February 1916, 801 parcels of food and clothing were sent out by the committee and several hundred cards of acknowledgment received during the same period. Each man received four loaves of bread monthly, along with a large quantity of cigarettes and tobacco. Senex, an anonymous letter writer to The Irish Times, was exercised about the lack of manners he observed among the youth of Dublin. “Are good manners no longer taught in Dublin schools or families!” he lamented.

Senex observed the youth rarely rose and offered their seat to a lady. “In my young days, I was taught that it was the height of bad manners to sit while a lady was left standing, but no such idea appears to have entered the minds of young males of today.”

Instead, Senex believed that the only class exhibiting manners in Dublin was the “labouring classes”.

He concluded: “A workingman will still remove the pipe from his mouth when passing a lady in the street: your young gentleman puffs his tobacco smoke in his mother’s face and is not ashamed. In this and some other matters our labouring men have much better manners.”

After initial rebuffs, the French were feeling more confident about their situation in Verdun. German attacks on the fortresses of Douaumont and Vaux had been repulsed. An official dispatch concluded: “The general situation continues to be excellent from the French point of view. The view that the war consists almost entirely in the killing of Boches has become very widely accepted and French regiments advance very gaily to the front glad to know that here, at any rate, on the Verdun front, the enemy is giving them plenty of opportunity to shorten the war by much killing of Boches.”

2016 Galway is to mark the Easter Rising with a street pageant. Galway Whispers Revolution in the Latin Quarter will host events on Tuesday, March 22nd, Wednesday, March 23rd, and Holy Thursday, March 24th. There will be live re-enactments of the clandestine meetings that happened around Galway at that time.

Actors in full costume will assume the roles of senior Galway IRB and Cumann na mBan figures as they try to hold their secret meeting to plan and debate the details of the 1916 Easter Rising.