Did you know?
That the Irish Protestant cry of ‘No Surrender!’ was first used by Cork Williamites?
In February 1689, two months before the Siege of Derry begun, Tyrconnell sent a force under the command of Justin McCarthy to the west Cork town of Bandon to clear out what he called “that nest of rebels”. The people of the town unfurled a huge banner to greet Tyrconnells force which read ‘ No Surrender!’ and they heard shouts of the same coming from the towns people. McCarthy marched his troops into the town while the people were at Divine Service and effected a bloodless take over. The next day – Black Monday – the towns people rose again, killed eight soldiers and chased the garrison away. The soldiers returned later and retook the town, but the story of the people of Bandon was heard up and down the country and No Surrender quickly became the battle cry of Irish Protestants.
That the first Orange parade in memory of King William was held in Dublin on the 4th November 1690?
On Williams birthday, the 4th November 1690, the cities militia, 2,5000 strong marched through the city to the sound of fife and drum. The Lord Justices who had been appointed by William held a reception for senior Orange commanders at Dublin castle and Protestants all over Ireland drank toasts to “Our new King, the Deliverer”.
That the first Orange Society ever formed in Ireland following the Willimate Wars was in Dublin?
The Aldermen of Skinners Alley was formed and met in a narrow backstreet near Dublin Castle an area originally inhabited by people who traded hides and leather. In this congested district a printer called Richard Pue converted ‘a fine building’ into a fashionable coffee house which quickly became the most fashionable establishment of its kind in the city, known as ‘Dick’s’. The Aldermen )all city of Dublin Aldermen) adopted as their motto ‘Dum spiro spero’ (while I breathe I hope) and remained in existence for over 100 years.
That the noted English sculptor Grinling Gibbons was the artist commissioned by the city fathers in 1701 to create the statue of King William in College Green?
Gibbons delivered a masterpiece to the city. King William was depicted as a Romanesque general with a laurel wreath on his head and riding a prancing horse, a fashionable pose for great men of his day. The tour de force was mounted on a high marble pedestal and a white tablet bore the inscription: Guielmo Tertio, Magnae Britanniae, Franciae, et Hiberniae Regi. Ob Religonem Conservatom, Restitutas legas, Libertatem Assertam. (William, Third of Great Britain, France and Ireland, King. Preserver of Religion, Restorer of Laws, Upholder of Liberty.) The statue was unveiled with great ceremony on the 1st July, which was declared a public holiday. All the Church bells rang and all the shops were closed. Great crowds filled the streets from early morning. The Lord Mayor, Aldermen, Sheriffs, Council Members and Wardens assembled at the Tholsel and walked in formal procession to College Green preceded by Military bands and Grenadier companies of the Dublin Militia. The Lord Justices then marches, three times around the statue. Following the second circuit the Recorder of the City, from a platform in front of the monument, delivered an address which expressed the attachment of the people of Dublin to the person of the Monarch and his lawful government. A volley of shots were fired and cannon discharged. At night the celebrations continued with the people of the city lighting bonfires and letting off fireworks. Virtually all the Protestants of Ireland esteemed the statue and regular visits were made to it. Every anniversary of the Boyne, the statue was decorated by the people will ribbons, flowers and flags and drew large crowds that celebrated around it. The statue survived until 1929 when it was blown up by the IRA and never repaired. The government of Northern Ireland was denied a request by the Irish government to remove the statue to Belfast and instead they dumped into a builders yard. All that remains in the inscription tablet.
That much of what is considered traditional Orange celebrations today started life in counties Cork and Dublin?
The Protestants of the west Cork town of Bandon were amongst the first to celebrate annually and begin the tradition of ritalised ceremonies to commemorate the Battle of the Boyne. On the 1st of July each year crowds gathered from all over west Cork in the town early in the morning. The men wore their best attire and put Orange cockades in their hats and the women pinned orange lillies to their bonnets. At 11 am the gates were swung open and a band paraded through the town playing Orange tunes. After a Church Service everyone gathered to watch a ‘sham fight’, the mock reenactment of the Battle of the Boyne nowadays famous in Northern Ireland.
That Daniel O’Connell toasted the memory of King William at a meeting in Drogheda?
Daniel O’Connell begun a new organisation called the Loyal National Repeal Association. He stressed that his organization was loyal to the Kingdom and venerated Queen Victoria. He said ‘the Irish people recognize, acknowledge and maintain and will continually preserve and uphold the throne of Ireland; Her Majesty Queen Victoria, who God Protect’. He went on to say ‘ the connection between Great Britain and Ireland, by means of power, authority and prerogatives of the Crown, to be perpetual and incapable of change or any severance of separation’. He ended the speech by drinking a tumbler of Boyne water and toasting the ‘Glorious and Immortal Memory’ of King William.
That the early leadership of the Orange Institution came from the aristocracy?
Leadership in the early days came from those who were acknowledged by the populace of the day to be the ‘natural leaders’. They were largely the aristocracy. Examining the list of Grand Masters of the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland we can count one Duke, four Earls, one Knight and two Baronets among the holders of that office, over a period of two hundred years.
That a County Grand Master of Belfast was a great advocate of Irish Language and culture?
Rev. Dr. Richard Routledge Kane (1841-1898), Rector Christ Church (Church of Ireland) in Belfast was not only a great advocate of the Irish language but was, along with Dr. Buick the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland and Dr. Welland the Church of Ireland Bishop of Down, Connor and Dromore, a patron of the Belfast Gaelic League which had been founded in 1895. It is also said that he signed the Minutes of Lodge meetings in Irish. He was County Grand Master of Belfast 1885-1898.