….and in other news from 1913

Belfast Accent Confuses Judge

The Manchester Guardian has reported that a newly installed Resident Magistrate in Belfast has struggled with the local accents. He was hearing a case in which a man was accused of assaulting his wife. The Magistrate asked the wife what had happened. She replied, ‘He hit me over the head wi’ the matta’. The Magistrate failed to understand what this object was, and was informed that the woman meant a motto. Still perplexed, the Magistrate was told by the witness, ‘Ach, don’t you know, it’s thon wee thing wi’ a frame round it, and “God Bless This House” in the middle’.


Great Scientist Honoured in Belfast

The Earl of Shaftesbury has unveiled a memorial statue honouring the life of Lord Kelvin, the scientist and mathematician. The statue, which stands thirteen feet high, is the work of Mr Bruce-Joy RHA, and will stand at the entrance of the Botanic Gardens in Belfast.


Irish athletes beat Scots

At an athletics meeting in Belfast, Ireland has beaten Scotland seven events to four. The outstanding performance was by F.R. Shaw, the well known cricketer, who won the sprint in a time that equalled the Irish record. It has been seven years since Belfast hosted this prestigious event, and a good crowd was in attendance.


Population Increasing Despite Emigration

Figures released today, covering the year 1912, show that Ireland’s population is growing. Overall there was an increase in population of 1,162 people, and the lowest death rate was recorded since 1862. The declining death rate was assisted by a fall in deaths due to tuberculosis and by the lowest infant mortality rate since records began.

Last year there were 23,283 marriages of which 16,557 were Roman Catholic, 3,494 Church of Ireland, 13 Jewish and 9 from the Society of Friends. 407 of the men who married, and 1,485 women were minors at the time of their wedding. Of the 101,035 births, 51,700 were boys and 49,335 girls. The highest birth rates were recorded in Dublin and Belfast, while the lowest were in Counties Wicklow and Roscommon. Death rates were highest in Counties Limerick, Monaghan and Armagh, and lowest in Galway, Mayo and Kerry. 29,344 people emigrated, with the majority, 11,352 leaving from Ulster.


Car for Crippled Children Attacked in Belfast

Today was the annual outing for crippled children to Mountstewart, the home of the Marquis of Londonderry. However, when one of the cars that had conveyed the children back to their homes in West Belfast was driving down Leeson Street, just off the Falls Road, it was attacked. The car was set upon by a group of men and they pulled off three Union flags that were decorating the car. The men also tried to attack the driver and two passengers, an entertainer who had been at the party and one of the crippled children. Fortunately the driver was able to speed off, and no one was hurt. According to the Belfast Telegraph, the ‘incident has caused much indignation in Belfast’.



Telephone Cable for crossing The Irish Sea Completed

The city section of telephone cable that will link the GPO with Holyhead has now been completed. The cable, which will cross underwater from Holyhead to Howth, has now been run all the way to the GPO in the heart of the city. From there, the lines go on to the south of the country and to the Belfast. All customers will, once the undersea lines have been completed, find it far easier to make calls to Britain with an increase in sound quality. The completed undersea lines will replace those between Port Mora and Donaghadee that were laid in 1893.


Belfast Shipworkers Threaten Strike

While English and Scottish shipworkers vote on whether to strike over the issue of advanced wages, the men in Belfast are refusing to even ballot. The hardline approach has been rejected by employers who claim that one of the workers demands, an eight hour day, will make the Belfast yards uncompetitive. The employers’ spokesman stated that ‘already several jobs that could have been filled at home have gone abroad’.


New Scheme for Treatment of Tuberculosis Unveiled

The Belfast Corporation adopted a new scheme today aimed at tackling the high incidence of tuberculosis in the city. The Corporation will take over the Abbey Sanatorium which will allow 465 beds to be made available to tuberculosis patients. Half of the cost of the scheme would be funded by the government under the terms of the Home Rule Bill, which the majority of the Corporation are opposed to.


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