Stories from Old Newspapers

 Waterford News 7 September 1849


The gentlemen of this town having subscribed a few pounds for the amusement of the inhabitants generally, to cheer up the drooping and desponding spirits of a people surrounded by every sort of epidemic disease, and most particularly by the ravages which Cholera has made, on the 2nd inst hundreds of persons assembled to behold the aquatic sports. The Margaret and Victoria were the boats owned by Glanville and Rawley.

They were manned by the most experienced of the Dungarvan and Abbeyside boatmen. The wager was £6 to the first boat at the flag-staff. The shot being the signal for the starting - cheers and hurras of the many hundreds assembled gave additional impulse and vigour to the exertions of the brawny rowers: but all their supposed fun and merriment was soon changed into bitterness and disappointment by the stupidity of one of the Abbeyside boatman, who violated the rules laid down by crossing the course marked out by the judges. It was the cause of a great kick-up among the belligerent powers contending for the superiority of the sea. 

Stories from Old Newspapers

 Sligo Champion 3 March 1838

Loss of a Liverpool vessel, her crew and cargo in Ardmore Bay.

The vessel alluded to in the following letter is supposed to be the Sir Howard Douglas. Not one of the crew has escaped, and we fear that their fate has been shared by the crew of another vessel - a schooner whose name or destination has not reached us - ashore near Cable Island.

To the editor of the Cork Constitution Ardmore Feb 16, 1838

A most disastrous shipwreck occurred in the bay within the last six hours. About one o'clock, a.m., the half tide, a large three masted vessel was seen to drift before wind and tide into the south east angle of Ardmore Bay. She beached side foremast almost instantly upon a fine sandy bottom. The crew at this time cut away the foremast, which went overboard with the top of the mainmast. This was the time for the crew to have made some effort to save themselves by rafts, or boats. In about half an hour after striking she became embedded in the sand, evidently filled with water; the crew were now all on deck, lashed to the timber near the stern, and they and they appeared like so many inanimate beings; the tide at this time receding, it was hoped by those on shore that at low water the vessel might be reached, but in vain, all efforts were useless, - no boat could go against the wind and tide. Besides the surf ran mountains high. It was now evident all help from shore was out of the question - signals were made to the crew to leave the vessel at all risks - but no - they seemed unheeded. All this time spars were every moment leaving the ship and floating to shore, and even the ship's boats from off the deck; still the crew sent no rope to shore, or ventured on the spars; the deep water only continued for about 100 yards... there it was only knee deep, and that 100 yards might with the aid of the wind, be passed in five minutes - the crew in fact appeared stupefied... It was dreadfully painful to witness the return of the tide... at four o'clock the crew got into the rigging, and the sea washed over the deck. A little after, one of the masts fell, and all were crowded on the remaining one, there they hung, a most melancholy object to contemplate, their number appeared about 12. Night closed, and left those unhappy beings in their awful situation, on a single plank amidst a raging sea....About six o'clock the vessel broke up. Hogsheads, boxes etc, floated on shore - the shore in fact was covered with the wreck and cargo, but not one human being came to land. Several respectable persons in the neighbourhood were on shore the entire time, waiting to afford every aid.... The water guard are at present protecting the wreck.

Shipwreck along Irish Coastline



Museum Talk

Our last talk of the series for 2022 was given by Bernadette Guest, Waterford City and County Heritage Officer. The talk was well attended. Bernadette outlined many projects completed or to be completed by the end of this year, such as the Knockboy Church, Kilgobinet etc.  She detailed the many Decades of Centenaries Projects \which were initiated by local communities around the county.  She mentioned the eagerly awaited book on the Cumann na mBan, compiled by Eddie Cantwell and Chrissy Knight O' Connor.

Waterford County Museum would like to thank Merry's Gastro Pub, Main Street Dungarvan for facilitating are talks this year.

Stories from Old Newspapers

 Freeman’s journal 5th December 1907

A special interest attaches this to tonight’s performance by the Carl Rosa Company of Balfe’s evergreen opera “The Bohemian Girl”, in as much as an old favourite Irish tenor, Mr. Patrick O’Shea will be heard in the part of Thaddeus.  Mr. O’ Shea, who is a native of Lismore, Co. Waterford, had formerly been a useful member of the Carl Rosa Company in the ‘eighties’, but in 1900 he threw himself into the Irish Ireland Movement, and devoted his energies to the rendition of traditional Irish songs, appearing with conspicuous success at all the big concerts in England, Scotland, Ireland and America from 1901 to 1906. 

Now that he has again joined the Carl Rosa Company, it goes without saying that he will be accorded a heady ovation in an opera composed by a Irishman, Michael William Balfe.  It may be of interest to mention that ‘The Bohemian Girl’ was first produced in Drury Land London, on No 27th 1843, when Harrison sang the part of Thaddeus.

Patrick O’ Shea was born in Lismore in 1872 and educated at Mount Melleray.

In 1898 he won the men’s singing prise at the Oireachtas, in 1903 he was described as ‘Irelands own tenor’. In May 1919 a memorial concert was held in Dublin in his honour. The Carl Rosa Company was founded in 1873 by Carl Rosa, a German musical impresario.

The Freeman’s Journal 8th April 1919 published his obituary:

“Numerous friends and admires will regret to hear of the death of Mr. Patrick O’Shea, the well known Irish tenor, which took place at his residence, 52 South Richmond Street, yesterday.  Mr. O’Shea’s early success was with the Ludwig concert party (Dublin born William Ledwidge (1847-1923) had his own touring company: Ludwig concert party in the 1890’s), with whom he toured Ireland, England and Scotland.

“Pat” as he was familiarly known to his friends, enjoyed great popularly at home and aboard.  His voice was of a pure and sympathetic quality…he was the first professional singer who sang songs in Irish on leading concert platforms, and his appearances at the Queen’s Hall and Albert Hall… were always popular musical events”


Stories from Old Newspapers

 Cork Examiner 11 January 1868

Soiree in Cappoquin

On Twelfth Night a fashionable soiree was held in the Reading-rooms here. It was attended by most of the respectable inhabitants of this and the neighbouring towns, and patronized by the worthy pastor of the parish, the Rev. Michael Spratt, P.P., who is ever anxious and ready to forward any movement tending towards the advancement and reasonable enjoyment of his parishioners.

On this occasion he not only gave the use of the reading-rooms, but kindly and warmly announced the soiree and the object of it from the altar. It is to this mainly due, seconded by the earnest exertions of the gentlemen of the committee, that it has been so successful, leaving in the hands of the treasurer, Mr. J.E. Walsh, a handsome balance towards supplying the wants of our chapel. The extensive rooms were carefully festooned with evergreens, which were kindly given by Mrs. Chearnley, Salterbridge, to the members of the committee. When the company assembled, with the numerous lights and the soul-stirring music of the brass band, specially engaged for the occasion, it was indeed a festive scene. Dancing continued until one a.m., when a most recherch√© supper was laid, to which 130 guests were together seated. The caterer was Mr. M. Morrissey, Hotel, Cappoquin. To all who know him, it is enough to say, that everything was in his best style. All the mysteries of the cuisine were exhausted, and nothing was wanting that could add to the appearance of the board or the wishes of the most fastidious epicure. When the supper, dessert and wines, were fully discussed, the band again struck up dance music, and on the ‘light fantastic toe’, with unflagging spirit, the company held the floor till morning. Special credit belongs to…the Rev. P. Spratt. C.C., who remained to witness all the enjoyment of the night, and to the members of the committee, Messrs M. Morrissey. T.F. Bayley, J.E. Walsh, M.F. Phelan, C.J. O’Connell, and J. Morrissey, for their untiring exertions to render the soiree what it has been – a complete success.



St Mary's Roman Catholic Church Cappoquin