Thursday, March 12, 2015

Top 10 Memorable Irish Accomplishments

 10.  William Brooke O'Shaughnessy from Limerick responsible for introducing the therapeutic use of cannabis to Western medicine in 1841 after he returned from India.

9. Mary Robinson was the first female President of Ireland from 1990-1997, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, from 1997 to 2002. In May 2005 she was awarded the first "Outspoken" award from the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission In July 2009, she was recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom,  She was born in County Mayo.

8. Irishman, John Philip Holland,  designed the USS Holland (SS-1), it was the United States Navy's first modern commissioned submarine. He was born in County Clare.

7. Teenager Annie Moore was the first immigrant  to pass through the Ellis Island facility in New York Harbor to the United States in 1892. She arrived from County Cork.

6. C. S. Lewis was a novelist, poet, academic, medievalist, literary critic, essayist, lay theologian, and Christian apologist.  He was born in Belfast and died with minimal media coverage attributed to it being the same day President Kennedy was assassinated. Most notable work, "The Chronicles of Narnia". Let us not forget Joyce and Yeats also top novelists and poets.

5. Richard Harris, the King of Camelot from one of my favorite Broadway Musicals was born in Limerick, Ireland.  Anyone remember MacArthur Park? He sang it., one of his best friends Jimmy Webb wrote it.  I met him once when he was performing Camelot in Philadelphia and I have the picture to prove it somewhere in my collection. There was never a better king with the exception of Yul Brynner, The King of Siam. Richard Harris was Professor Dumbledore in Harry Potter, but to me he will always be the King.

4. James Hoban,  Irish architect designed the Charleston, South Carolina Courthouse and the White House in Washington D. C. He was born in the County Kilkenny.

3. James Gamble co-founder of Procter and Gamble was born in County Fermanagh.  He later emigrated to the United States. Ivory Soap was the first branded product in 1879. Tide was first introduced in 1946. Scan through their products, I wager you have at least 10 of them in your home inventory.  I have 19, I find that amazing.

2. Beer was first recorded back in early Egyptian days but Guinness that is pure Irish ingenuity. It all started with 100 pound inheritance and a 9,000 year lease. Cheers to Arthur Guinness born in County Kildare.

1. Commodore John Barry, Father of the United States Navy hails from Wexford, Ireland.  I have more pictures of him than just about every statue in the city of Philadelphia. It is an obsession, he calls to me. Every time I am in Old City I take a picture of his statue situated on the south side of Independence Hall.  There is no other statue on the property but Commodore Barry.  He has stature, prominence, authority and makes an independent statement. I am Big on Barry.

He is buried at St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

A few things named in his honor. (list found at wikipedia)

 There are also a memorial of John Barry in Wexford, Ireland.  
He is on a U.S. and an Ireland postage stamp.

The first confirmed written record of whiskey comes from Ireland, Annals of Clonmacnois, 1405.
Films: The Quiet Man, In the Name of the Father,  My Left Foot, Waking of Ned Devine, The Field, Angela's Ashes, just to name a few.

Erin Go Bragh
Ireland Forever


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