August 20

Published in On this Day listing

  • 1919 In Dáil Éireann, a motion proposed by Cathal Brugha that its members, its officials and the Irish Volunteers swear allegiance to the Dáil and the Irish Republic was passed. The Irish Volunteers thereby became the standing army of the Irish Republic—the Irish Republican Army (IRA).
  • 1988 Eight soldiers from the Light Infantry Regiment, aged 18–21 years, were killed when an IRA bomb went off under their bus as it travelled on the Ballygawley to Omagh road in County Tyrone. A further nineteen were injured.
  • 1967 Derrynane Abbey, Co. Kerry, home of Daniel O’Connell, opened as a museum.
  • 1940 Leon Trotsky, exiled Bolshevik revolutionary, Marxist theorist and founder and commander of the Red Army, was assassinated at his home in Coyoacan, near Mexico city.
  • 1912 William Booth (83), English social reformer, evangelist and founder of the Salvation Army, died.
  • 1868 Thirty-three died when the Irish mail train, en route from Euston to Holyhead, collided with runaway wagons from a goods train. Amongst the dead were Henry Maxwell, Lord Farnham, landlord and MP for County Cavan since 1824, and his wife.
  • 1778 Bernardo O’Higgins, the father of Chilean independence, was born in Chillán, a son of Sligo-born Ambrose O’Higgins.

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