Snippets from 1898 Impartial Reporter.

May 1898.  From year to year it is remarked that Bundoran is improving.  This long straggling village of one continuous street, extending over a mile in length along a country road by the seaside is without any government of its own – no Council to look after its byways, thoroughfares, other sanitary arrangements and it remains for private efforts and private association of residents to do any little that can be done without the aid of legislative powers.  The Ballyshannon Board of Guardians are supposed to exercise supervision in sanitary matters, but, practically, they do nothing.  The Sanitary Act with them is almost a dead letter; but somehow after years of patience and labour they have managed to get portion of the water works constructed and next year may hope to see a water supply in Bundoran.

One of the surprises of Bundoran has been the great success of the Highlands Hotel. When its walls were only a few feet high people shook their heads over a scheme which could not pay, and would not attract any money and the house which would remain empty.  We cannot say that the shareholders have yet received their five per cent but the hotel was not long in existence when it became so crowded that an additional wing and an extension of the dining accommodation became necessary.  Mr. Sixt the courteous and enterprising manager had the knack of sending his guests away with the desire to return and thus it is that even now with the additional accommodation he is obliged the times to refuse guess.  His resources no doubt are many for when the bedrooms are all full the billiard room, lounge, his own office and other resorts are made available and for instance it was by such a expedients that he was able on last Saturday and Sunday to house 71 people while its sleeping accommodation was only for 58.

July 28th 1898.  JUDGES OF WHISKEY.  According to Saturday’s Surrey Mirror certain members of the Reigate Board of Guardians were not satisfied with the whiskey provided with their lunch.  At the last meeting Rev. E.M. Gibson, of Charlwood called the Lunch Committee’s attention to the fact that the whiskey was very bad indeed.  He hoped the Master would provide them with decent whiskey; no man with any self-respect would drink what was at present supplied. (Laughter.)

The Chairman Rev. H. J. Greenhill remarked that whiskey was supplied to them by a highly respected merchant and cost of 49 shillings per dozen.  Rev. E. M. Gibson – It is raw, crude oil, and is not worth 15 shillings a gallon.  The Vice Chairman – I quite agree with Mr. Gibson – it is not fit to drink.  Major Kingsley O Foster said he only tasted the whisky once and he thought it was the most filthy whiskey he had ever tasted of his life.  Rev. C. Gordon Young – Hear, hear.  No action was taken.

July 28th 1898.  THE TEDIUM OF THE PRINCE OF WALES SICK ROOM is cheered by the electrophone, which sends a concert, an opera, or a church service along a wire to edify or amuse him.  It is not necessary to shout in an instrument of this kind or worry over it as over a telephone.  It simply gathers up every sound in the largest hall, church, or theater and sends it along.  The Prince had the special pleasure of hearing a sermon preached on himself and his accident by Canon Fleming at Saint Michael’s Church, Chester Square.

July 28th 1898.  MR. GOSCHEN THE FIRST LORD OF THE ADMIRALTY, has risen to the exigencies of the situation.  He is given the proper answer to Russia and has fully redeemed his promises.  As a patriotic and statesmanlike member of the cabinet he has adopted the true line of conduct and he has asked the nation to endorse his action in regard to strengthening the British Navy.  The House of Commons has cordially responded to his request, and the whole country rejoices that there is a solid man in charge of the “Empire’s First Line of Defense.”  His speech on Friday last dealt with three main topics, the original construction programme of 41 ships; the ordinary programme for the current year and a supplemental programme.  The latter consists of four battle ships, four cruisers and 12 torpedo destroyers, the estimated cost of which will be £8,000,000.

November 17th 1898. Impartial Reporter.  BALLYSHANNON.  THE WORKHOUSE MASTERS DEATH.  HAWKER CHARGED WITH MANSLAUGHTER.  On Thursday at the coroner’s inquiry into the sudden death of Mr. Patrick Gavigan master of the Ballyshannon Workhouse, the circumstances of which have already been reported, two witnesses named Holland and J.  Cleary deposed to seeing the deceased receiving two blows on Saturday from a man named Charles Flanagan, a hawker.  Medical testament was to the effect that deceased suffered from diseased brain and that death resulted from extravasation of blood on the surface of the brain which might have been caused by a fall on the back or a blow on the side of the head.  The jury found that deceased died from extravasation of blood on the surface of the brain and that death was accelerated by a blow or by blows received on Saturday night from one Charles Flanagan.  Flanagan is in custody.  The prisoner has been returned for trial to the Ulster Winter Assizes at Belfast.

November 10th 1898.  ELECTION REJOICING IN KESH.  A GENERAL ILLUMINATION.  At 12.30 Wednesday the 2nd inst. a special wire conveyed the news that E.  M.  Archdale, Esq.  D.L, was declared our member for North Fermanagh.  Messengers were dispatched with the expected news to the supporters of Mr. Archdale who reside in remote corners of the district.  Ere the shades of night fell hundreds were seen, old and young, to make their way to the village to join in the rejoicing over the victory of Mr. Archdale.  As soon as darkness arrived in large bonfire was lighted on Dromard Hill and other hills to the north of Kesh.  Gunshots and ringing cheers everywhere echoed the news through the air that a Fermanagh man was the representative of Fermanagh men in the British House of Parliament.  Looking from an eminence above the old barracks, Kesh had the appearance of a portion of some great city animated with electric lights.  Every house, Unionist and Nationalist, was lighted to such an extent that the aspect of the village was most striking and for the first time the street lamps were all aglow.  At 7.30 tar barrels were brought into requisition by Mr. J.  Aiken, junior and located in the Fairgreen, then a torchlight procession marched from the vicinity of the Orange Hall through and around the village and finally took its stand where the tar barrels were placed.  After prolonged cheering for Mr. Archdale had ceased, Mr. W. J. May presided as chairman and gave a splendid address.  Dr. A. Aiken addressed those present of all creeds and classes on the occasion of their coming together to pay all honour they could to one worthy of their highest congratulations, Mr. E. M. Archdale.  (Cheers) Mr. Campbell, Mister J. Martin and others gave addresses.  Loud cheers were given for Mr. Archdale before quitting the Fairgreen.  Afterwards speaking and singing where continued in the Markethouse to a late hour.

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February 1915.

Fermanagh Times February 4th, 1915.  FERMANAGH MAN KILLED IN ACTION.  DEATH OF IRVINESTOWN VOLUNTEER.  Very sincere sympathy is expressed all over the Irvinestown district with Mr. George Chittick on the loss of his eldest son, William Henry, who was killed in action on the 22nd of January at the early age of 25 years.  Deceased was educated at Methodist College, Belfast, and afterwards served with of Messrs.  Lindsay & Company, The Arcade, of that city.  From there he went to Messrs. Deuts, London and at the outbreak of the war his patriotism, loyalty and love of King and country asserted itself and after writing to his father that he felt it his duty to volunteer he joined the Honourable  Artillery Company in September.  He was a splendid type of Britisher, vigorous, open hearted, kindly, and was immensely popular with everyone who knew him, both in business and social circles.  In the beginning of October he was sent to the front, and after almost four months, during which he survived many exciting and strenuous incidents and engagements he was shot through the head just above the ear, death being mercifully instantaneous.  There was no general engagement in progress at the time, writes a companion, who was at his side, but only general firing that is practically continuous, but not heavy.

A more detailed account is given in a letter written to Mr. Chittick by Second Lieutenant Martin M.  Schiff, who says: – I deeply regret to have to announce to you the sad news of your son’s death, when in the trenches on January 22nd.  Your son’s death deprives me of a fine soldier, and one who endeared himself to all of my platoon.  He was known as the “Brazier King” owing to the wonderful way he was able to get a fire or brazier going under the most adverse circumstances.  He was shot through the back of the head and death was almost instantaneous.  He was buried at dusk in the garden of a ruined cottage just behind the firing line by all his friends.  A short service was read by the commanding officer and we placed a wooden cross over him.

Fermanagh Times February 4th, 1915.  BOA ISLAND FERRY OR BRIDGE.  (To the editor of the Fermanagh Times.)  Dear Sir, permit me through the columns of your widely read paper to say a few words on the much needed bridge into the Boa Island.  I would ask on behalf of the Boa Islanders why the deputation adopted the east end of the island as a suitable place?  Perhaps owing to their ignorance of such a place as the Boa Island!

Sir, as one of the largest rate payers on the mainland facing the Boa Island I protest against such an invidious selection of site, in so much as this would only suit a few at the top end or east end of the island.  Now, let me ask, what is the whole of the Boa Island to do for a market if the so-called ferry were placed at the top or Kesh end?  Are you aware that the island people are divided all over the island?  There is a County road to the lake shore facing on Rossgole to Pettigo, which is the market town, not Kesh.

Now, I ask those gentlemen who so strongly differed with Mr. Burkett, how much interest they have in the Boa Island people?  What has the Rev. Father Fitzpatrick to say, does he contribute a farthing to the rates or the maintenance of a road to the lake, has he one iota of interest in the island?  Where does a schoolmaster like Mr. Nugent come in?  Is it not his duty to mind his school and while away the time to when he is eligible for his pension when, perhaps, he may find solace in a little home on the Boa Island where to end his day, enjoy his pension and agitate for a ferry to carry him to the great Beyond?  What has the Rev. Mr. Stack to gain by having a ferry at the east end?  I am not aware that he is in any way interested in either Kesh or the Boa Island.  Now, sir, I think I must conclude, but my earnest hope is that if ever there is a ferry or bridge into their Boa Island it will be at Rossgole.  Years, F. W. Barton.

Fermanagh Herald 6th February, 1915.  THREE BRITISH STEAMERS ARE SUNK BY A GERMAN SUBMARINE IN THE IRISH SEA.  This happened on the route used by vessels trading between Belfast and Liverpool.  They were all sunk in the vicinity of Fleetwood, and not far from the Liverpool lightship.  The ships were the steamer Ben Cruachan, 1,978 tons from the Orkneys to Liverpool sunk at 10.30 on Saturday.  The crew of 23 were saved by the fishing smack Margaret and landed at Fleetwood.  The steamer Londa Blanch from Manchester to Belfast was sunk at 12.30 and her crew of 10 were saved by the Fleetwood trawler Niblick and landed at Fleetwood. The steamer Kilcoan, from Liverpool to Belfast, with coal was sunk about the same time as the Londa Blanche whose captain and crew of 10 were saved by the steamer Moon and landed at the Isle of Man.

Fermanagh Herald 13th February, 1915.  CATHOLIC NEWS.  EXPIATION SUNDAY IN ST. MACARTAN’S, MONAGHAN.  In accordance with the decree of Pope Benedict XV., Sunday was observed as a day of prayer and special devotion for the restoration of peace in all the churches in the Diocese of Clogher.  In the cathedral his Lordship Most Rev Dr. McKenna presided at the 12.00 Mass, after which there was Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, the “O Salutaris” and vespers being sung.  Large numbers of the faithful visited St., Macartan’s during the evening, and the children of the various schools were there, and sang hymns and recited prayers before the Altar of Repose.  At devotions in the evening, the congregation was a very large one.  The Litany of the Saints was sung, and the Pope’s Prayer for Peace recited.  Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament was subsequently given by the Lord Bishop, the assistant priest being Rev James McPhillips, Adm., and Rev. Denis McGrath, E. I.

Fermanagh Herald 13th February, 1915.  WHISKEY IS FOUND IN A PATIENT’S A BED IN ENNISKILLEN WORKHOUSE HOSPITAL.  A lively discussion followed the reporter from Dr. Betty who wished to draw the attention of the Guardians as to the irregularity and want of observation of the nursing staff in the case of a patient in the infirmary.  In my rounds on Friday last, he said, while examining the beds, I found a quantity of whiskey in the patient’s bed – namely, one naggin – partially consumed.  The use of whiskey in her case is injurious, and I would ask the Guardians to make a rule prohibiting stimulants to be carried into the institution.  Mr. Crumley proposed that there should be a sworn an inquiry into the whole establishment.

Impartial Reporter. February 18 1915.  COUNTY FERMANAGH RATES.  Large increases are estimated with Lisnaskea up 8d and Clones up 9d.  The Belleek rates are still the highest in the county at 3s 1d for land and 4s 5d for buildings which is an increase of 2d in the pound.  The principal cause of this increase is new roads and the repairing of ‘lanes and private avenues’ against which the County Surveyor has consistently protested at both the meetings of the District and County Councils.

Impartial Reporter. February 18 1915. WAR NEWS.  The meat supply of all Australia is being reserved by the Commonwealth Government for export to the British army.

Women are now acting last tram and train conductors and bank clerks in France owing to the scarcity of men.

The ox have taken the place of horses on farms in France, owing to the horses having been called up, and the ox takes quietly to his new duty between the shafts of the cart or elsewhere.

Germany must be in a desperate plight when she is calling men of 60 years of age to the colours.

The Lusitania left Liverpool on Saturday, flying the familiar British Red Ensign.  “A stout British skipper and the British flag are good enough for me,” said an American on board.  Consumptives who thought that their ailments would have secured them from conscription, were forced into the German army, and certificates to the fact that they had consumption was found on the bodies of some dead Germans.

Impartial Reporter. February 18 1915.  BELLEEK COUNCIL GET URBAN POWERS.  At Belleek Council on Saturday, Mr. J. Timoney, JP presiding, the Local Government Board wrote relative to the application of the Belleek Rural District Council to be invested with powers of an Urban sanitary authority to enable them to carry out to the public lighting by electricity of Belleek, and in view of no objections having been lodged with the Council against the proposed scheme, the Board have given directions for the preparation of an order, under seal, investing the council with the necessary urban powers in the matter.  The Board also wrote stating that they had recommended the Irish Land Commission to issue to the Belleek Rural District Council for the instalment of £500 out of the loan of £4,250 to them granted under their Labourers Act.

Impartial Reporter. February 18 1915.   BALLYSHANNON.  Within a few hours of setting foot on Irish soil, Patrick Slavin, Lisbally, Ballyshannon, who returned from America last Tuesday, died.  He had been advised to come home by his New York doctors, and arrived in his native place in an exhausted state and died a few hours after.

Fermanagh Herald 20th February, 1915.  JOTTINGS.  Mr. A.  C. McDonnell, M. A., Headmaster of the Enniskillen Royal School, has accepted a class-mastership at Eton.

Fermanagh Herald 20th February, 1915.  BUTTERING INMATES BREAD.  At a meeting of the Lisnaskea Guardians on Saturday Mr. Kirkpatrick said that they should revise the existing dietary scale.  He said the 2lb loaf was cut in four portions, and the butter was placed on in any way and handed to the inmates.  The result was that in most cases the soft part of the bread was only eaten, and the crust was considered offal.  He was of the opinion that the officials should cut a certain quantity of bread and butter it and let it be served to the inmates on trays.  Let each inmate take what they want and any portion leftover be put in a press until the next meal and used up.  That was the way it was done in his own house and they should do the same in the workhouse.

Fermanagh Herald 20th February, 1915.  SIR ROGER CASEMENT IN BERLIN.  Sir Roger Casement, the Irish leader and former British Consul-General in Rio de Janeiro, and the exposer of the Putumayo atrocities, published and communicated today to several newspaper is an open letter to Sir Edward Gray, alleging documentary evidence to substantiate the sensational charges he makes against the British government of the criminal conspiracy to have him captured and murdered.  He charges the British Minister in Norway, Findlay of criminally conspiring with Casement’s manservant Adler Christiansen, a Norwegian, to kill Casement for which act Christiansen would receive 25 or perhaps $50,000.

Fermanagh Herald 20th February, 1915.  BELGIANS IN CLONES ARE ANXIOUS FOR EMPLOYMENT.  The Belgian refugees at Scarva House, Clones, are apparently quite happy and well looked after, but they are anxious to find employment if possible, especially the men, who had been occupied at various trades in their own country.  M.  Lebon can repair motor or ordinary bicycles; M. Tacquet is a worker in bronze, and can also install electric light or gas, having worked in this latter occupation in Brussels; M Vandorik is a ladies’ hairdresser, possessing three diplomas for proficiency in that art; and M Mollyman is a ladies’ and gentlemen’s tailor.  Madame Tacquet is a milliner; and Mme Vandorick and her sisters are glove makers; and Mme Mollyman before the war earned her livelihood at the incandescent mantle business.  Anyone desiring the services of any of the above should communicate with the secretary, Belgian Relief Committee, Clones.

Fermanagh Herald 20th February, 1915.  BELLEEK DISTRICT COUNCIL.  A meeting of the above Council was held on Saturday in the Boardroom of the Ballyshannon Union.  Mr. J Timoney, J.P. presided.  Belleek Rural District Council is to be invested with powers of an urban sanitary authority to enable them to carry out to the public lighting of Belleek by electricity.

The tender of Mr. John Campbell for the erection of cottages number 11 and 12 was sanctioned under the Labourers Act.  A certificate was received from Dr. Kelly stating that houses in the townlands of Drumnasrene and Scribbagh were in a very unsanitary condition.  Mr. R.  O.  Gregson stated that these houses were ready to fall at any moment.

Fermanagh Herald 20th February, 1915.  JOTTINGS. Snow fell heavily in Enniskillen on Sunday and Monday.  There has been a lot of sickness prevalent in the town for some time past, and it is hoped that the snowfall will clarify the air and kill the germs prevalent.

Official intimation has been received by his parents in Enniskillen that Private Frank McKiernan, has been killed in action.  Private McKiernan and was a well-conducted young man of high character and his death on the “Field of Honour” will be regretted generally in the town.  Much sympathy is felt for his parents and relatives.

Mr. Hugh Smyth, stationmaster, Enniskillen on his transfer to Cootehill, has been presented by the people of the district who do business with the Great Northern Railway with a well filled purse of sovereigns, and by the local railway staff with a handsome marble clock and ornaments.

Fermanagh Times February 20th, 1915.  THE BOA ISLAND FERRY.  DEPUTATION TO THE COUNTY COUNCIL.  BUT TWHAT DO THE PEOPLE WANT. The question of providing Boa Island with a bridge or ferry which has been under discussion for 10 or 12 years once more came up for consideration at the meeting of Fermanagh County Council on Thursday.  The county surveyor said that building a pier at either side would cost about £300 each and the ferry boat £200 making a total cost of £800.

Mister A. Nugent, Kesh spoke in favour of the undertaking and stated that the memorial which had been presented to the two members of parliament for the County was representative not only of the people who resided on the island, but of those who lived on the mainland in that district.  The memorialists consider that the ferry should be at the East end of the island for these reasons; – 1. The object of the ferry was to enable them to bring over their horses, carts and produce to market on the mainland, and by placing it at the east end of the island they could go to either Kesh, Pettigo or Irvinestown with their goods; whereas to have it placed in the centre to serve Pettigo only that would cut off the other two places altogether, which they submit it was not right.

  1. The clergy of both denominations have to travel into the island and all hours of the night and this would suit them best.
  2. There was much better land shelter on both sides of the east than elsewhere; in fact in the roughest storm one would be able to pass from side to side in the ferry, which certainly could not be done at any other point.
  3. The County Council was custodian of the county’s money and they should not diverted into Pettigo, which was in County Donegal, when they had Fermanagh markets equally available for the islanders.
  4. The people whose names appeared on the document to which he referred and who would be most affected by the ferry were desirous of having it placed at the east end.

Mr. Burkett the County Surveyor said if any person wants to put a lot of needless cost on our County let them keep up this controversy as to where the ferry is to go, a controversy to which, in my opinion there is only one side.  I believe if you allow this controversy to develop you will have no ferry at all.  I will go so far as to bet £5 to £1 that if an independent vote of the people who live on the island was taken it would be found that there was a majority of at least 5 to 1 in favour of pulling the ferry in the centre. Fr. Fitzpatrick P.P. declared you were biased in this matter.

Impartial Reporter. February 25 1915.  THE IRISH TOBACCO INDUSTRY.  The yield of green tobacco in Ireland varies from 1,600lb.  To 2,000lb. and in some cases 2,300lb. per acre, whereas the yield in America is from 1,200lb. to 1,500lb. per acre and as the subsidy is substantial, the Irish farmer can make this crop pay from £12 to £15 per acre.  Some 70 hands are at Adair employed and grading the leaves into five different lots according to quality, each be used for a special brand of tobacco.  Cleanliness and comfort are features of the buildings in which this operation is carried on.  The various buildings can be seen connected with the rehandling of tobacco at Adair, nearly four acres, and the bonded store, in charge of the Customs officer, contain a considerable stock some of it four or five years old.  Extensions are in progress, and there is about the place a general air of bustle and business that suggests a thriving enterprise.

Impartial Reporter. February 25 1915.  MICHAEL O’LEARY, V.  C.  AN IRISH HERO.  On the first of this month at Cuinchy O’Leary, then lance-corporal was one of the storming party which advanced against the foe’s barricades.  He rushed to the front and killed five Germans, who were holding a barricade.  After this he attacked the second barricade, some 60 yards further on, which he captured after killing three more Germans and making two others prisoner.  Thus he captured a German position with one pair of Irish hands. O’Leary was promoted on the field to the rank of sergeant for distinguished service. He has been well rewarded.  He has won the V. C.  and the heartfelt thanks of the Empire.  Michael O’Leary is not yet 25 years old, having been born in Macroom, Co., Cork, in September 1890.

Fermanagh Herald 27th February, 1915.  MR. CYRIL FALLS SAYS: – “Night after night in the past few weeks, in tiny Orange Halls, in school houses, even by the roadside at night, when the speaker could not see the faces of his auditors and had to read notes by the light of a bicycle lamp, I ever heard made and made myself, this plea: – we are not asking you to support the Government that would have shot you down a few months ago.  We detested it as much as you.  We all have our account to settle with it later on.  Now we ask you to fight for the bigger things than the Union or the Orange Association, for your farms and homes – for your King and your country.  We are fighting for our own particular form of civilisation, and if that is overthrown none of these things will matter a straw.  The U.V.F must come forward in big numbers now or shut up shop.”

Fermanagh Herald 27th February, 1915.  A Victoria Cross for Fermanagh.  Among the 11 Victoria Crosses awarded is the following: – Lieutenant James Anson Otho Brooke, 2nd Battalion the Gordon Highlanders, for conspicuous bravery and great ability near Ghelurvelt on the 29th of October, in leading two attacks on the German trenches under heavy rifle fire and machine gun fire, regaining a lost trench at a very critical moment.  He was killed on that day.  By his marked coolness and promptitude Lieutenant Brooke prevented the enemy from breaking through our line at a time when a general counter-attack could not have been organized.  Lieutenant Brooke was a son of Captain H. V. Brooke, D.L., now of Aberdeen, whose father was the second holder of the Brooke baronetcy, Colebrooke Park, Brookeborough; who was MP for Fermanagh from 1840 -1854.  His brother has been wounded in the fighting in East Africa.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  WHAT THEY HAVE ENDURED.  THE WOUNDED IN WAR.  In the early days of this war, when the ambulance and hospital trains had broken down under the strain of the war, and the wounded were suffering all the horrors of interminable journeys in cattle trucks, you could never discover from any of them that anything was wrong.  The took it all in the day’s work and assumed that the best possible was being done. Thank God, that is over, and we now have the best of everything for the wounded; but all the more, because they do not complain, the rest of us should realise what they have suffered and did suffer, and the great call upon character and courage this war is making upon those who take part in it.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  PENSIONS FOR WIDOWS AND WOUNDED SOLDIERS.  Much dissatisfaction has been expressed lately at the delay in issuing a report on the subject of separation allowances and pensions for widows and disabled soldiers.  It will be remembered that a good many weeks have elapsed since a committee was formed to deal with the matter, and it was confidently expected at the time the recommendations would be forthcoming within a fortnight at the latest.  It now seems that the committee have had to tackle a problem far more difficult and complicated than was generally supposed, and it may be some little time before the body is in a position to draft a statement.  The delay is certainly regrettable, for there is no doubt that the uncertainty which at present exists regarding payments to dependants is having its effect upon recruiting.  Married men are reluctant to offer themselves for enlistment until they know precisely how their families will stand in the event of their death, and there are numbers of single men who’d like to be assured of adequate means of subsistence in the event of disablement.  Meanwhile, the Government have done a wise thing in providing for the payments of full separation allowances to widows pending a definite decision on the subject of pensions.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  JOHNSTON –December 26, 1914, at Reitfontein, Johannesburg, South Africa, Frederick William, second son of the late David Johnston, of Belleek, County Fermanagh.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  CAPTAIN J.C. JOHNSTON, R.M. of Magheramena, Belleek, and private Secretary to His Excellency the Marquis of Aberdeen, has been appointed R.M. for the County Meath.  Captain Johnston was High Sheriff of Fermanagh a few years ago.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  CAPTAIN BRIAN BROOKE of the East African Mounted Rifles, whose name appears in the official list of killed in the East African fighting was closely connected with the Brooke family, Colebrooke Park, County Fermanagh.  He was a son of Captain Harry B.  Brooke, D.L., Aberdeenshire, and grandson of the second holder of the Brooke baronetcy, who was Conservative member for County Fermanagh between 1840 and 1854.  Deceased was born in 1889, educated at Clifton College, and settled in British East Africa.  Like most of the settlers he joined the local forces on the outbreak of war, and has now been killed fighting the Germans.  His brother, Lieutenant J. A. O.  Brooke, of the Gordon Highlanders, was killed in action in France.  Another brother, Arthur is a squadron officer in the 18th King George’s Lancers, (Indian Army), and a third brother, Patrick, is a midshipman in the navy.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  THE MOVEMENT TO CAPTURE GERMANY’S TRADE, about which so much has been heard since the outbreak of war, is slowly but surely assuming definite form.  The information supplied from the Board of Trade and from consular and other resources has proved extremely valuable, and manufacturers’ are now showing a more pronounced disposition to act upon the advice submitted to them.  An exhibition, which it is proposed to hold in London at a date soon after Easter, will include a display of goods specialised in Germany and Austria, and of British wares by which they can be superseded.  An influential advisory committee has been formed in connection with the project, and it is hoped to add further names to the list of members so as to make the scheme thoroughly representative of British and Irish trade and commerce.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  A CERTAIN RELIEF FOR PAIN IS DR. BARRETT’S ELECTRIC RUB which can be used either by itself or in conjunction with the above for Rheumatism, Sciatica, Pains in the Back, Lumbago and Pains in the Joints.  It far surpasses ordinary embarkation, and gives immediate relief.  Bottles one Shilling and one Shilling and nine pence each.  Postage three pence.  Obtainable only from W.S. Taylor, L.P.S.I., Chemist and Optician, The Medical Hall and The Pharmacy, Enniskillen; and The Medical Hall, Lisnaskea.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  FERMANAGH MAN MURDERED.  HEAD BLOWN OFF.  TRAGIC SEQUEL TO CLAIM ON LAND.  The story of how Mr. Mervyn Johnston, husband of Mrs. Johnston, The Stores, Kesh, of which deceased was a native, was foully murdered has just reached us.  Mr. Johnston had but recently emigrated to America in company with his brother-in-law, William Moore.  They went to a place known as Sulphur Spring Valley and filed on two pieces of land.  It would seem that a man named Cy West filed on part of the same land a year or more ago.  The recent filing was made on the ground that the prior rights had been forfeited.

On December 31st West returned to the property, erected a shack for himself, and started ploughing on another part.  It then appears that Mr. Johnston and Mr. Moore were about to walk past West’s cabin on January 1st when a shot was fired.  It was buckshot and entered Johnson’s head blowing it completely off.  The body was found directly in front of the cabin door and the hands of the murdered man were in his trouser pockets as he had fallen directly when hit.  West was afterwards arrested on the capital charge.

At the inquest it was stated that no words were spoken before the murder occurred, but immediately after the fatal shot West is alleged to have remarked – “All of you had better get off the place.”

An American local paper says – Johnston was prosperous farmer in his native country and also operated a merchandise store.  He was also a friend of James Aiken, formerly a resident of Bishee who returned of Ireland some years ago.  He has been known as a law abiding man who never carried any firearms.  He was universally respected by all who knew him.  Johnson leaves a widow and six children in Ireland to mourn his death.  Deceased was well known and highly esteemed in Fermanagh and the news of his tragic death will be received with the greatest possible regret.  It may be mentioned that deceased had no knowledge that West had any claim to the land in dispute.  He was a prominent Orangemen and the funeral arrangements were conducted by the members of the Order in the district in which he met his death.  Much sympathy is felt for Mrs. Johnston who is most popular in the Kesh district, on the sad and tragic loss she has sustained.

Fermanagh Times January 28th, 1915.  A LITTLE WET HOME IN A TRENCH.

I’ve a little wet home in a trench,

Where the rainstorms continually drench

There is a dead cow close by,

With her hooves towards the sky,

And she gives of a beautiful stench.

Underneath, in the place of a floor

There’s a mass of wet mud and some straw,

And the Jack Johnston tear

Through the rain sodden air

O’er my little wet home in the trench.

There are snipers who keep on the go

So you must keep your napper down low,

And their star shells at night

Make a deuce of a light,

Which causes the language to flow.

Then bully and biscuits we chew,

For its days since we tasted a stew,

But with shells dropping there,

There is no place to compare

With my little wet home in the trench.