The following are a collection of events that are connected to the history of Limerick or people from Limerick during the month of January.

1 January – On this day 1 Jan 1877, Richard O’Shaughnessy (1842-1918) M.P. for Limerick received the Freedom of Limerick from Mayor James Spaight

2 January – On this day, 2 Jan 1891, the Russian branch of the O’Mara Bacon factory was officially recognised by the Russian Government and received the royal assent of Emperor Tsar Alexander III. The O’Mara’s were invited to Russia by the Tsar to open the factory   

3 January – Limerick-born William Lane Joynt died on this day 3 Jan 1895 is the only person to have been both Mayor of Limerick and Lord Mayor of Dublin. He is buried in St John’s Churchyard, John’s Square   

4 January – Patrick James Ryan was born in Pallasgreen, Limerick on this day, 4 Jan 1881. An Olympic gold medallist. He won the hammer throw at the 1920 Games in Antwerp, and also won silver in the 56-pound weight (the only time this event was held).   

5 January – On this day, 5 Jan 1866, William Henry Tennison Pery, the 2nd Earl of Limerick died in London. His remains were returned to Limerick where they were interred in the Pery family vault in St Mary’s Cathedral.   

6 January – Rev. John C. O’Riordan was born on this day, 6 Jan 1924 in Effin, Co. Limerick. He became the second Bishop of the Diocese of Kenema, Sierra Leone in 1984 a role he held until his retirement in 2002.   

Bishop John C. O’Riordan

7 January – The historian, writer, and music collector P W Joyce was born in Ballyorgan, Co Limerick. He died on this day 7 Jan 1914. He wrote over 19 books on Irish history, folklore, and place names.   

8 JanuaryThomas Langlois Lefroy was born in Limerick on this day, 8 Jan 1776. The author Jane Austen wrote of him: “At length the day is come on which I am to flirt my last with Tom Lefroy, & when you receive this, it will be over—My tears flow as I write this, at this melancholy idea.”

9 January – On this day, 9 Jan 1919, Limerick man John Danaher died in Portsmouth. As a young soldier had received the Victoria Cross, the highest award for gallantry for his action during the First Boer War.   

10 JanuaryJim Hogan was born in Croom, Limerick. He competed for Ireland at the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo and for Great Britain at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City. He won the marathon title at the 1966 European Championships. He died on this day 10 Jan 2015   

11 January – On this day 11 Jan 1868, a notice to creditors to the estate of Dr. Robert Frith was published. His Will (pictured) was published a few days later in the Tipperary Vindicator. Frith in his life funded a school & widows almshouse in St John’s parish.   

12 January – Thin Lizzy performed in the Savoy Theatre on this day 12 Jan 1973. They also performed in Limerick in 1975 (Savoy) and 1980 (Oyster Ballroom, Dromkeen)

13 January – The Limerick-born novelist and playwright. Moira Hamilton Verschoyle died on this day, 13 January 1985. Her publications included Children in Love (1961), Daughters of the General (1963), So Long to Wait: an Irish Childhood (1960)   

14 January – Limerick-born Christopher Bunting became a newspaper editor and politician in Canada. He passed away on this day, 14 Jan 1896.

15 January – Limerick born rock legend Dolores O’Riordan passed away on this day, 15 Jan 2018.

  • The Irish political journalist and writer, James Winder Good, was born on this day was born 15 January 1877, in Limerick.

16 January – Lady Honora Burke died on this day 16 Jan 1698. Her first husband was the legendary Patrick Sarsfield of the Siege of Limerick (1690-1). After his death, she married James FitzJames, 1st Duke of Berwick, an illegitimate son of James II.   

17 January – The 1st President of Ireland Douglas Hyde was born on this day, 17 January 1860. He received the Freedom of Limerick in June 1909 from Mayor T Donnellan

18 January – Limerick man Sergeant James Drury, fought in the American Civil War. On this day, 18 Jan 1893 he received the United States’ highest award for bravery during combat, the Medal of Honor, for his action during the Battle of Jerusalem Plank Road in Virginia in 1864.   

  • Waterford man Grice Smyth died in Limerick on this day 18 January 1818. His daughter became Princess Penelope of Capua.

19 January – The Limerick-born poet and editor John Francis Waller died on this day 19 Jan 1894. Many of his odes and poems were set to music by Irish composers, including ‘The Spinning Wheel’   

20 January – Gerard McDonnell was born in Kilcornan, Co. Limerick this day, 20 Jan 1971. In August 2008, he became the first Irish person to summit K2, the second-highest mountain on Earth. Tragically, he lost his life following an avalanche on the descent.   

21 January – On this day 21 Jan 1969, the Nationalist & founding member of Cumann na mBan in Limerick, Madge Daly passed away in Dublin aged 92. She was the sister of Kathleen Clarke, Mayor of Dublin and Ned Daly who was executed for his part in the 1916 Easter Rising.   

22 January – On this day 22 Jan 1842, the future Roman Catholic Bishop of Limerick Rev Dr. Edward Thomas O’Dwyer was born. While Bishop of Limerick he helped establish Mary Immaculate College   

January 22 Bishop O'Dwyer
Bishop Edward Thomas O’Dwyer

23 January – On this day, 23 Jan 1922, the Theatre Royal in Henry Street was destroyed by fire. It was built in 1844, on a site previously used as a circus.   

24 January – On this day, 24 Jan 1902, Limerick-born James Cooney was presented with the United States Medal of Honor for bravery for his action during the Boxer Rebellion.   

25 January – O’Brien County in Iowa was officially created on this day, 25 Jan 1860. It was named after the Nationalist William Smith O’Brien who lived at Cahermoyle House, Ardagh, County Limerick. He was MP for Limerick County from 1835 until 1849.   

26 January – On this day, 26 Jan (annually) is Australia Day. Thousands of Limerick citizens made Australia their home whether intentionally or by transportation. In 1863, the O’Shaughnessy brothers from Limerick detailed this arduous journey.   

27 January – Dr. Samuel Crumpe, one of the first doctors in what is now St John’s Hospital died on this day 27 Jan 1796, aged 29, of typhus which he contracted from a patient. He was also an amateur meteorologist, here are his weather reports for 1795

28 January – On this day, 28 Jan 1892, military pilot David Tidmarsh was born in Limerick. In 1916, he was awarded the Military Cross for ‘conspicuous gallantry’.   

29 January – On this day 29 Jan 1886, the actor William Francis Maher MacNevin better known as Val Vousden was born in Carlow. He attended Mungret College in Limerick for his post-primary education.   

30 January – The Limerick-born painter Saint George Hare died on this day, 30 Jan 1933. Hare attended the Limerick Art College when it was housed in the Athenaeum, Cecil Street. One of his most famous paintings is ‘The Gilded Cage’   

31 January – Limerick born radio and television presenter Terry Wogan, passed away on this day, 31 Jan 2016.   

Terry Wogan

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