Child smoking on increase in Cork, and 20 new houses to be built in Fairhill

What was in the news 100 years ago today? Richard Forrest reports in Echoes of Our Past
Child smoking on increase in Cork, and 20 new houses to be built in Fairhill

Ad in the Echo on Dec 30, 1922

JUVENILE smoking has a decidedly increasing tendency in this city, as elsewhere, and there is not much evidence of anything being done to check it, the Echo reported 100 years ago today, on Saturday, December 30, 1922.

We have not yet arrived at the stage when the child will take the feeding bottle out of its mouth and put the cigarette in its place. But if events proceed to their logical conclusion, that interesting time may well arrive.

One thing is certain, many boys are old smokers long before they are out of their teens, and many are “followers of the weed” before even entering them. Indeed, it is no exaggeration to say there are youngsters today who can smoke much better than they can read or write, and have a marked preference for it.

Yet from the point of view of the health of the child, it is an absolutely ruinous practice.

We are also living in times when so much is occurring to get on the nerves of young and old. The young can do without the smoking habit on top of that. In time to come, nervous wrecks will abound in the country.

Furthermore, it is an adult luxury, an expensive one too, and should be confined to that.

Parents must not slacken in conveying this message to children and expressing disapproval at their indulgence in it.

Houses for Fairhill

A special meeting of Cork Corporation was held yesterday to consider tenders for the construction of 20 houses at Fahy’s Well (Fairhill). It was summoned for 3.30pm, but it was not until 4.10pm that a quorm was present.

At 3.45, Sir John Scott asked the Town Clerk to call the roll, but Deputy Lord Mayor Ellis, presiding, said others were on the way and they should wait.

Five minutes later, Sir John repeated the request but Mr Ellis again refused. Sir John replied that he had no power to prevent it being called. A large expenditure of money was to be discussed and if they didn’t call it, any business they might do would be illegal.

Sir John then handed a written statement to the Town Clerk and requested him to read it. The Deputy Lord Mayor said he would not allow it be read.

Mr Allen said: “Give us a song, Sir John.” Mr Fitzpatrick added: “It wouldn’t be the first time”. 

Sir John read the note and asked: “Where are all the members who are so anxious to build houses for the working classes? I have waited 25 minutes.”

Robert Day, TD, arrived. Sir John said: “It is now half an hour after the time and I demand the roll be called. You are bound by an Act of Parliament to do so.”

“What Parliament?” asked members.

A quorm finally materialised at 4.10pm and it was called. The meeting discussed expenditure of the remaining Xmas Relief funds for the unemployed in the New Year. Mr Allen pointed out that some men 10 or 12 years with the Corporation got a nice Xmas box by being laid off.

Mr. Gamble said it was unfair the men should not be allowed work until the City Engineer was back. He motioned that the men knocked off be put back on. It was agreed to unanimously.

The meeting then discussed its main business - tenders for the 20 new houses. One tender, hand delivered, had been a half hour late, Sir John suggested they be lenient as they had been late themselves. When all was found to be in order, the lowest tender of £11,300 (£565 per house) was accepted.

Fire in Billiard Hall

The Fire Brigade were called to the A.O.H. Hall on Morrison’s Island this morning where some military are stationed. The woodwork of the fireplace in the billiard room caught fire. A chemical engine extinguished the fire.

Shot Dead at Whitegate

The man shot dead at Whitegate on Christmas Eve has been named as James Byrne. It appears he and comrades were walking to Aghada when fired upon. Byrne was shot through the heart and died immediately. A comrade was wounded and is at the Mercy Hospital.

In relation to the wounding of Commandant Whelan two months ago, it is stated that Byrne had no responsibility in it.

A large crowd attended his burial at Corkbeg, testifying to deceased’s popularity.

Army Officer’s Escape

A National Army officer proceeding from Macroom to Millstreet had a narrow escape. Dressed in civilian clothes, he was fired upon not long after setting out and wounded in the leg. He fled the car and under the cover of darkness made his way across country to a farmhouse. All the while he could hear the firing at his motor continuing.

A messenger was sent to Macroom and an ambulance and armoured car arrived out. He was brought to hospital and the car was recovered.

Moylan Gone to America

It was strongly rumoured in Cork today that Sean Moylan, one of the principal leaders of the Irregulars in the south, has gone to America. He was elected to the Daíl in the last election but never took his seat.

It is thought he left Kenmare by steamer for Liverpool and thence to the United States.

Arrests in Knocknagree

Three Irregulars were arrested on December 23 at Knocknagree, north Cork - Denis O’Brien, Patrick Sharpe and Daniel Hartnett admitted being engaged in the recent attack on Ballymakeera and Ballyvourney. They were unarmed when captured.

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