Bomb thrown on Washington Street, and Opera House reopens after conflict

What was in the news 100 years ago today? Richard Forrest reports in his weekly column, Echoes of Our Past
Bomb thrown on Washington Street, and Opera House reopens after conflict

Ad for a dance in Sheare’s Street in the Echo on Dec 24, 1922

JUST after 6pm yesterday, a bomb was thrown at a military lorry in Washington Street. None of the soldiers were injured, but several civilians, including two women, were hurt quite badly.

The street was crowded at the time with shoppers and people leaving work. The bomb appears to have been thrown from the corner of Cross Street connecting with Liberty Street east of the Courthouse.

The missile rebounded from the lorry back on to the road and exploded with terrific force, sending shrapnel and splinters flying in all directions amongst the pedestrians. It is a wonder more weren’t hurt.

A mother and daughter named Donovan appear to have been the worst injured. The mother was hit around the hip, the daughter in the thigh.

Mary Coveney, Blarney Street, was wounded in the arm. Michael Murphy, an accountant with Lyons & Co, South Main Street, was wounded near the eye. John Dempsey, Magazine Road, was also hit in the thigh, and Denis Keating, St. Mary’s Road, in the left foot. All were taken to the Mercy Hospital.

Several others did not necessitate hospital treatment.

The soldiers dismounted quickly and searched for the attackers and, far from dispersing, a large crowd gathered. Some 15 minutes later a young man was taken in custody, but he was apparently under the influence of drink and not believed to have been involved in the attack.

When the lorry returned after conveying the injured to hospital a volley was fired in the air and the crowd ordered to disperse.

Unemployment issue

At Cork Corporation last night, with Mr Horgan in the Chair, the unemployment situation was discussed. Barry Egan said the Government was not sufficiently aware of the situation. More grants were needed to take men off the streets.

 He proposed a small committee be formed to draw up a report to put the situation in Cork comprehensively before the Government.

Alderman Kenneally said he felt the Government was aware of the unemployment situation around the country. The Labour Exchange in Cork can tell them they have 6,000 or 7,000 registered. He said, to much dissent: “I am convinced, as a Labour man, that the Government has no intention to relieve unemployment. It will, in my opinion, never do so while the present trouble is going on. It is part of the game - keep the unemployment there, and swell the army.”

Mr Kelleher said he believed, if the case was put, the Government would come to the rescue to help relieve unemployment.

Mr Egan’s resolution was unanimously approved and appointed to the committee were - Messrs Ellis (Deputy Lord Mayor), Barry, Egan, Kenneally, Kelleher (sen.) and Sir John Scott.

Opera House Re-opening

It’s very good news that the Opera House is reopening Tuesday next after its prolonged period of enforced emptiness.

The management are to be congratulated on securing such a huge attraction as the popular musical comedy The Lady of the Rose. It is new to Cork, but its success elsewhere is unequivocal. It has been acclaimed in the London press as excellent entertainment with clever lyrics and music the best of its kind in years.

Very enjoyable performances may be also anticipated from the Warbler Pierrot Concert Party in the New Year. 

The talented troupe are busy rehearsing their programme featuring song, harmony and popular topical efforts, including a screamingly funny musical sketch entitled ‘Harmonious House Hunting’.

The Cork public can look forward to a feast of music, mirth and melody.

A Stop to its Gallop

Daniel Callaghan, Lombardstown, was returning home a few evenings ago when he stopped to help a neighbour cross a broken bridge. As he did so, his horse took fright and dashed off at great speed.

Edward Goggin, Creggane, made a very plucky attempt to check the animal’s mad career when he succeeded in catching the reins, but failed.

A little further along, John Scanlan and Denis Ryan, students returning home for Christmas, finally managed to bring the runaway to a standstill and deserve great praise as there were children playing in the road at the time.

A Supply of Pure Water

J.C. Foley, president of Cork Chamber of Commerce, referred to the immense reservoir of pure spring water underground on the south side of the River Lee.

Back in 1895, Mr O’Toole, the Waterworks Engineer, made tests showing this water has no connection with the visible river. It is, in fact, an underground river from which an ample supply may be obtained. He bored wells at the inch near the Waterworks and at 40ft found it.

Samples sent to Birmingham for chemical and bacteriological testing found it was chemically pure and possessed all the qualities of ideal water.

When the City deliberated a scheme to filter water, the projected cost was about £100,000. Mr O’Toole drew attention to the underground river as a purer source costing £5,000, but the scheme was turned down.

Mr Foley urged that the city again look at Mr. O’Toole’s work before engaging in another expensive scheme.

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