March madness 1919: So close, yet so far

American-based supporters of Irish independence on March 4, 1919, appeared tantalizingly close to winning U.S. government backing for their cause. But they fell short. In Washington, D.C., the U.S. House of Representatives voted 216 to 41 in favor of self-determination for Ireland. It was the last day of the legislative session, however, and a parliamentary […]

12 July 1958: The wedding beyond the marching

On 12 July 1958, the BBC for the first time “live” broadcast a massive Orange parade in Northern Ireland. About 25,000 men from 300 lodges participated in the five-mile march from Belfast to “The Field” at Finaghy, according to news reports. That day, 60 summers ago, was “dull and wet” across the Six Counties as […]

Catching up with modern Ireland: March

I’ve now spent most of the first quarter of the year producing my Ireland Under Coercion, Revisited blog serial, which explores aspects of the 1888 book Ireland Under Coercion: The Diary of an American, by journalist William Henry Hurlbert. Before continuing the series, here’s another end of the month wrap up of developments in modern Ireland and Northern […]

Northern Ireland voters return to the polls 2 March

Only 10 months have passed since Northern Ireland voters selected assembly representatives. Now, fresh polling takes place 2 March, prompted by the January resignation of Sinn Féin’s Martin McGuinness, the former deputy first minister. His move, in protest of a troubled renewable energy scheme overseen by Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) First Minister Arlene Foster, collapsed the […]

Northern Ireland snap elections set for 2 March

Northern Ireland Assembly elections have been set for 2 March, and the current the governing body at Stormont, elected just eight months ago, will be dissolved 26 January. The Assembly will be reduced to 90 seats, or five member for each of the 18 constituencies, from the current allotment of 108 seats, or six representatives […]

March is Irish-American Heritage Month

UPDATE: Obama did mentioned “the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Rising” in his 15 March remarks to the Irish delegation. ORIGINAL POST: March is Irish-American Heritage Month, which means an annual proclamation from the White House and corresponding fact sheet from the U.S. Census Bureau. I was a little surprised that President Barack Obama’s proclamation […]

Confederate battle flag and NI marching season

It’s marching season in Northern Ireland, and this year there’s some extra attention on appearances of the Confederate battle flag, subject of much controversy in the American South. Writing in National Catholic Reporter, Mary Ann McGivern notes the similarity of arguments between those who believe celebrating Protestant King William of Orange’s 1690 victory over Catholic King James […]

Here we go again: marching season in Northern Ireland

It’s July, and that means Orange parade season in Northern Ireland. The trouble has already begun as the two main unionist parties walked out of talks at Stormont after the Parades Commission banned Orangemen from marching by a republican area of north Belfast on 12 July.  The Guardian reports there are renewed fears that serious […]

Marching in Ireland

Two big marches occurred in Ireland over the weekend, one a political protest in the heart of Dublin, the other a Protestant parade in rural County Donegal. Some 7,000 Orangemen paraded in Rossnowlagh, the only such July 12th parade in the Republic of Ireland. “The march was highlighted as a tourist attraction for the first time as […]

From Marconi to Twitter in 100 years

My only obstacle to calling Ireland is coordinating the time difference. From my iPhone, I reach out to family and friends from home, office, or while traveling. The device’s digital connection also allows me to text and Tweet, and read The Irish Times as easily as The Washington Post. Communications were not always so instant, […]