British troops evacuated, Pope is gravely ill - and flu epidemic rages in Cork

What was in the news 100 years ago? Richard Forrest reports in Echoes of Our Past
British troops evacuated, Pope is gravely ill - and flu epidemic rages in Cork

Pope Benedict XV, was very ill on this day 100 years ago.

THE new Provisional Government formed last week after acceptance of the Treaty was busy at the Mansion House, Dublin, yesterday, the Echo reported on Saturday, January 21, 1922.

Visitors included the Protestant Archbishop of Dublin and a deputation from the Irish Farmers’ Union. James McMahon, Under Secretary at Dublin Castle also called and had a brief interview with Michael Collins, who crossed for London last night where he will join Kevin O’Higgins.

Meanwhile, Mr de Valera is set to propose that Sinn Féin only support candidates in the upcoming parliamentary election that pledge not to take the oath of allegiance to the British monarch.

The evacuation of British forces began in earnest yesterday with two special trains conveying troops from Kilworth Camp to Cork for embarkation. Seven more brought troops from the Curragh, Tipperary and Maryborough (Port Laoise) to the North Wall, Dublin about noon.

The Cork steamer, Glengarriffe, left Tralee with 570 Royal Fusiliers aboard. All the Auxiliary Police have gone except two companies and they will leave today.

The evacuation of the Air Force also began yesterday morning with eight Bristol Fighters flying out of Baldonnell Aerodrome. The old order truly doth give way to the new. Perhaps too rapidly to fully impress itself on the public mind.

Overhaul for Haulbowline

From the proposals that have been made to the men at Haulbowline, it is clear the Admiralty was weeks in advance of the political situation. It announced: “All fit established men under 50 years of age are to be transferred to English yards and are hereby given immediate notice of such transfer four weeks hence.

“Selection of yard, viz. Portsmouth, Devonport, Chatham or Sheerness to be made later. Men declining transfer to be discharged and not entitled to pension or other retiring allowances under Superannuation Acts. Further instructions will be sent regarding men over 50 years of age.”

Accident in city

At about 8.30am yesterday, the Corporation Ambulance was called to Albert Quay, where a man named Edward Barrett, of Barrack Street, was found to have met with a serious accident. 

It seems that while working on the deck of a ship at the quayside, he fell and broke one of his legs. He was removed suffering much pain to the South Infirmary.

Workman falls off Ladder

Around 9am today, a rather serious accident occurred in Patrick Street when workmen were erecting an arc lamp on a wooden pole for street repairs.

A ladder was placed against the pole and mounted by one of the men, John O’Shea, of Evergreen Street. He had just reached the top when the pole swung, causing him to crash down on the tram track. The Corporation Ambulance was immediately summoned and conveyed him to the Mercy Hospital. On examination it was found his left arm was badly bruised and cut and his nose and face also injured.

Pope’s Condition “Grave”

In Rome at 3am, a message was issued saying that having received Communion, the Pope (Benedict XV) asked for Extreme Unction which was administered by Monseigneur Zampini at 2.10am. 

The condition of his Holiness is worsening and now considered extremely grave. 

Noble Guards are on sentinel duty at his apartment, a precaution that is only taken when a Pope is dying. (He died the next day)

Epidemic of Influenza Rages

A very serious epidemic of influenza has been raging in Cork and throughout the south of Ireland generally for the past three or four weeks. Instead of showing signs of abating, it seems to be growing worse.

It was hoped the recent snowfall would see numbers affected decline. There is scarcely a household in Cork in which some member or members are not affected. In the city, business is very seriously affected. Warehouses, stores and in fact every place where a large number of men are employed, are trying to carry on with depleted staff.

Compared to the epidemic of three years ago (Spanish flu), it is, fortunately, of a mild type, and provided the usual precautions are observed it generally passes over in a few days. But where people try to fight it without taking to bed, the danger is very real.

Numerous cases of pneumonia have developed, and the number of deaths is increasing.

For their own sake, people should observe strict precautions and, when attacked, remain in bed until all danger is over.

Wild Birds used to Shot

Wild birds have become unusually oblivious to man’s presence. Long exposure to startling deadly charges of shot have bred a certain boldness in our winged tribes.

I saw the unusually wary and nervous wood pigeon complacently feeding at the roadside without taking flight on my approach. Grouse and woodcock abound, and a man of moderate shot might fill his bag without undee exertion. I trust the new powers, as soon as they are settled down, will not forget a neglected branch of administration - the proper preservation of the game wealth of the country.

Shots Fired in Tralee

Around 5pm yesterday, sensation was caused by shots fired in Edward Street, Tralee, A young man, Percy Hanafin, and a Black and Tan, who was in a motor car, were seriously wounded.

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