Wishing you all a most joyful Holiday Season with my
wishes for a healthful, peaceful and prosperous
New Year !!
My 'MEAGER' 2018 Holiday Display !!
An interesting Hallmark ‘Snow’Queen’ Figural with Sleigh
presents and Penguins
nibbling at her legs and
arms !! A couple of ‘Pearly’ Pink
Boyd Art Glass
Christmas Penguins, Limited Edition (LE) of 31 molded on
31 December 2002,
only a ‘very few’ of these were
decorated in a Holiday Motif !! A
Works Polar Bear part of a similar LE of 30 !!
SCHOLAR LINCOLN !!
For those of you interested in my WONDERFUL Grandson,
and following his
progress, Lincoln’s now 11 Years of age
and has entered Middle School,
what we used to refer to
as Junior High School !! The ONLY ‘real’ difference is
School only encompasses 6th thru 8th Grades
and then he will be
graduated to High School !!
Here’s Lincoln in Front of His School,
Complete with His Favourite ‘Shoulder’ Pack !!
Remember when we were ‘kids’ and our Junior High
consisted of 7th thru
9th Grades ?? Our children and
grandchildren are REALLY more
intelligent these Days !!
Personally, I APPLAUD their achievement !!
HOMELY CONTEST !!
I’ve decided, following an ‘OLD’ lead from our UK Group,
to sponsor a
wee bit of a Holiday Contest !! I’m inviting
ALL Belleekers out
to submit a reasonable picture
of what they believe to be a ‘homely’
Belleek item !!
My rules are simple :
1. NO ‘composite’ items, i.e., (multiple) Factory items
together in some grotesque fashion.
2. NO damaged items.
3. NO items that YOU have hand decorated !!
PLEASE feel free to include your submissions provenance
as well as your
attraction to it and love for it !!
My entry is a VERY simple Egg Cup !! I believe it to be
refers to as Stoneware !!
Egg Cup !!
1st Period Mark !!
My Egg Cup is approximately 2” High and 1-7/8” in
Diameter !! Its
BARELY 3/8” Tall !! I TRULY
LOVE this little ‘treasure’ as it
a special shelf
next to my Belleek Earthenware Tea Trivet and Mug,
displaying LARGE 1st Period Marks on their ‘face’s !!
it from an
Auction back in our ‘Mid West’
region several Years ago !!
my acquisition of the following absolutely
splendid examples of
Belleek’s Ring Handle Ivory Pattern,
I became obsessed with producing
an article regarding
their origin, history and symbolism !! My
were, obviously, these belonged to some fraternal
organization !! With the steadfast assistance of Fergus
Head of Design at Belleek Pottery Ltd., I was
guided properly in the
completion my task !!
Although, when I begin to publish my Newslettre, I had
vowed to NEVER
include any discussions regarding
‘debatable’ material, i.e., politics,
religion and sports,
I have discouvered that it is acutely necessary in
Being so warned, for those of you whom, like myself,
abhor and loathe
political discussions, PLEASE avail
yourselves of all my ‘pretty
pictures’ !! NOW, I invite
the remainder of you Belleekers out
there to possibly
experience another personal epiphany !!
Hibernia is actually the Classical Latin name for the
Island of Ireland
!! The name Hibernia was taken from
of northwest Europe (c. 320 BC), Pytheas of Massilia
called the Irish island Iérnē.
The Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH; Gaelic:
Ord Ársa na nÉireannach)
is an Irish Catholic fraternal
organization. Members must be
and either born
in Ireland or of Irish descent.
A BEAUTIFUL Ring Handle Ivory Cup and Saucer !!
We'll be Discussing its Interesting Emblem and Monogram !!
SPLENDID 1st Period Mark on the Cup's Base !!
ALL the Items Comprising My
Set are Marked Similarly !!
The organization had its roots in the Defenders and
the Ribbonmen, both
Catholic agrarian movements of
the 18th and 19th centuries. It
in Ulster at
the end of the 19th century in opposition to the Orange
Order, i.e., so named after the Protestant King of
England William of
Orange. It was organized by Joseph
Devlin of Belfast, whom
ascended to position of Grand
Master by 1905.
Editor’s NOTE : Joseph Devlin was an Irish journalist
nationalist politician. He was a Member
of Parliament (MP) for
Irish Parliamentary Party
in the House of Commons of the United Kingdom
Great Britain and Ireland, and later a Nationalist
Party MP in the
Parliament of Northern Ireland.
The AOH was closely associated with the Irish
Parliamentary Party, its
members mainly constituents
of both parties. It was strongly
ideologies such as those of the Irish Republican
(the IRB), who were most unhappy at the
re-emergence of this old rival
society. Interestingly, membership in
initially banned by the Catholic Church, although this
lifted in 1904.
From a membership of 5,000 in 1900, nearly all in
Ulster, it climbed to
64,000 by 1909, complementing
the United Irish League. By 1914
order had spread
throughout the country, mainly because of its utility
a patronage, brokerage and recreational association.
for Irish nationalism, the AOH greatly
influenced the sectarian aspect
of Irish politics in the
early twentieth century. In Ulster and
acted as an unruly but vigorous militant support
organization for Joseph Devlin, John Dillon and
John Redmond against
radicals and against William
O'Brien. O'Brien regarded himself as
driven from the party by militant Hibernians at the
Convention" of 1909.
Editor’s NOTE : Already secretary of the London-based
League (UIL) of Great Britain, Joseph Devlin
became General Secretary
of William O’Brien's UIL,
replacing John O'Donnell, through the
deputy Irish Parliamentary Party (IPP) leader John
MP, with whom he held a close alliance and who
had fallen under his
influence. This "coup" gave them
nationwide control of the 1200
organizational base of the IPP, thus, depriving William
O'Brien of all authority and essentially 'driving' him out
Editor’s NOTE : Joseph Devlin and John Redmond,
leader of the IPP, were
lifelong friends and mentors !!
At Redmond's bid, Devlin’s
full attendance of suitable "supporters" at any meeting,
demonstration or convention throughout Ireland !!
After the 1916 Easter Rising the organization declined
Ulster, its members absorbed into Sinn Féin
and the Irish Republican
Army (IRA). In many areas
the organization provided by the AOH
thing to a paramilitary force. Many republican leaders
1916–1923 period, among them Seán MacDiarmada,
J. J. Walsh, and Rory
O'Connor, had been Hibernians
(Hibs) before the formation of the Irish
Close Up of the Cups AOH Monogram !!
The Ancient Order of Hibernians Monogram is easily
deciphered IF you
actually know that you are looking
for, i.e., an “A O H” !! In
illustration, the AOH
Monogram has displayed TWO of their Initials, the
“O” and the “H”,
‘interlaced’ and stacked, on top of
each other !!
Examining this Monogram, you will easily see the “O”
and the “H” JUMP
out at you as ‘individual’ characters !!
the “A” is easily ‘formed’ by
combining the “H” with the ‘top’ of the
VOILA “AOH” !!
LUCKILY, I was able to once again
avail myself of
VAST knowledge base, or I would NOT have had ANY
idea as to a
beginning point for the proper arrangement
of these letters, let alone
the organization they
represent !! MANY THANKS Fergus !!
ENTER THE FENIANS !!
Ireland was first invaded by England in the 12th century.
Irish societies were born of a need in the mid
16th century to protect
welfare of fellow Irish
Catholics, and especially the clergy who risked
death to keep the Catholic Faith alive in occupied Ireland
after the Penal Laws of 1691. These various secret
formed across the country to aid and
comfort their people by whatever
means was available.
Many Irish fought and died to expel the
centuries !! Unfortunately, the Great Famine of the
1840s would be
required to finally galvanize the Irish
One of the earlier and more memorable struggles was
the Irish Rebellion
of 1641. It began as an attempted
coup d'état by Irish Catholic
who tried to seize
control of the English administration in Ireland to
concessions for Catholics. The coup failed and the
developed into an ethnic conflict between the
Gaelic Irish and old
English Catholics on one side, and
both ethnically English Protestants
Presbyterian planters on the other. This began a
known as the Irish Confederate Wars.
The Irish rebellion broke out in October 1641 and was
several months of violent chaos before the
Irish Catholic upper classes
and clergy formed the
Catholic Confederation in the summer of
Confederation became a de facto government of most
of Ireland, free
from the control of the English
administration and loosely aligned with
the Royalist side
in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. The
Irish Confederate Wars continued in Ireland until the
Oliver Cromwell's New Model Army
decisively defeated the Irish
Catholics and Royalists,
and re-conquered the country.
The Fenian Brotherhood trace their origins back to
of United Irishmen, founded in
1791, embraced Catholics, Protestants
in its aim to remove English control from Irish
They planned a rebellion in 1798 to finally seek an end
to British rule
in Ireland, initially for self-government
and then the establishment of
an Irish Republic.
Unfortunately, the rebellion was suppressed,
in the 1801 Act of Union, which brought Ireland tighter
under British control. But the principles of the
to have a powerful influence on
the course of Irish history.
A Variation on the Flag of
the ‘United Irishman’ !!
The above flag is apparently from
the Irish town of
!! The '07 would indicate that it represented
or Volunteers during 1907 !!
discouvers a 'notable native'
by the name of
Liam Lynch (1893-1923). He was an Irish republican
military leader, serving as Chief of Staff of the Irish
between March 1922 thru April 1923.
Born at Barnagurraha, he
attended Anglesboro National
School. A leading military commander
in the War of
Independence, he opposed the Anglo-Irish Treaty on
grounds that it dis-established the Irish Republic
1916. He would assume the position of
Chief-of-Staff of the
anti-treaty IRA called the
"Irregulars". He was killed in a
skirmish with Free State
forces on the Knockmealdown Mountains in
Tipperary on April 10, 1923, aged 29.
Other than the phrase “God Save Ireland", one should
take special note,
on the ‘left edge’ of their flag, the
glowing sunrise indicating that
the Fenians strongly
believed they were part of that new dawn !!
** WHAT ABOUT THE UNITED STATES ??
Across the pond, in the United States, the Ancient
Order of Hibernians
(AOH) was founded in 1836 at
New York’s St. James Church on May 4, 1836
emulating these Irish societies. Their name was adopted
groups of Irish immigrants in the United States, its
purpose to act as
guards to protect Catholic churches
from anti-Catholic forces in the
mid-19th century and
to assist Irish Catholic immigrants. This vast
Irish Immigrants fleeing Ireland’s Great Hunger in the
1840’s, prompted a growth in many Irish societies
in the USA, the
largest of which was, and continues
to be, the AOH !!
Originally a secret society, the first American chapters
of the Order
sprung up in New York City and in the
coal-mining area of Pottsville,
Irish workers faced discrimination or harsh coal
working conditions. Many members in the coal mining
Pennsylvania had a background with the Molly
this time, the order was largely
preoccupied with the protection of
church property and
the provision of social welfare benefits to its
it would eventually become an important focus of Irish
American political activity !!
At its inception, the AOH in the United States had been
with its sister organization in Ireland. This
changed as the
wing grew dissatisfied with
satellite governance from the Irish order;
of US chapters formed what came to be officially known
the Ancient Order of Hibernians in America in 1884.
chapters were initially opposed to the
split, they eventually unified
under the US AOH banner
In 1894, the Daughters of Erin were founded as a
means for allowing
female participation in the activities
of the AOH. The AOH
was made explicit in
1906, with the renaming of the organization to
Auxiliary to the Ancient Order of Hibernians in
Surprisingly, the AOH would be accused of violence
in 1912 !!
Beautiful AOH Side Plate and Breadplate !!
FENIANS MONSTER CONCEPT !!
Irish nationalism was given a new spur when Irish
emigrants to the
United States found themselves a
despised minority. An
link with Ireland
had been forged earlier when Young Irelander veteran
Michael Doheny made his way to New York after the
He was joined there by John
O’Mahony, another Young Irelander, who had
to Paris with James Stephens.
O’Mahony and Doheny joined the AOH and formed a
within the AOH called The
Emmet Monument Association (EMA). The
as its name implied, was to raise money to erect a
the Irish patriot, Robert Emmet.
However, Emmet declared, before
that no man should write his epitaph until Ireland
Those who knew their history, knew well the purpose
of the Committee
was to raise funds to support Irish
independence. When it became
separated from the AOH and reformed it in 1858 as
the Fenian Brotherhood, a nationwide movement for
organization focused on identical
methodology of the Irish Fenians,
i.e., reunite Ireland
and regain their individual freedom via any
Many AOH men continued their support by maintaining
membership in both
organizations. O’Mahony led the
Fenians and, with James Stephens in
the Irish counterpart called the Irish Republican
Brotherhood (IRB). At the same time, the militant
began to infiltrate the AOH and
run their people for top AOH offices.
By the time the American Civil War broke out, the
Brotherhood (commonly known as
the Fenians) had agents across the
One hundred and seventy thousand Irish immigrants
in the Civil War, and many of them ended the
thousand of them joined
the Fenians after the war’s end in 1865, under
leadership of Brigadier General Thomas William Sweeny.
elected a government in exile in New York
and embraced Sweeny’s plan to
conquer Canada and hold
it hostage until Britain agreed to grant
So, we envision the Fenians' Monster Concept being
very simple, or at
least in their minds !! Simply
and conquer Canada, subsequently offering Great Britain
exchange of their 'control' of Northern Ireland in
'return' for their
Province of Canada, thus
the 'roots' for a united Ireland !!
In the United States, O'Mahony's presidency over
the Fenian Brotherhood
was being increasingly challenged
by William R. Roberts.
these two Fenian
factions would ‘split’ although both would continue
money by the issue of bonds in the name of the "Irish
Republic", which were bought by the faithful in the
their being honoured when Ireland should
be "A Nation Once
These bonds were to be
redeemed "six months after the recognition of
independence of Ireland". Hundreds of thousands of
Large quantities of arms were purchased, and
preparations were openly
made by one faction for a
coordinated series of raids into Canada,
United States government took no major steps to
in the US administration were not
indisposed to the movement because of
failure to support the Union during the civil war.
This factions’ "Secretary for War" was General T. W.
Sweeny, who was
struck off the American army list
from January 1866 to November 1866 to
allow him to
organize the raids. The purpose of these raids was
seize the transportation network of Canada, with the
idea that this
would force the British to exchange
Ireland's freedom for possession of
their Province of
Canada. Before the invasion, the Fenians had
some intelligence from similar minded supporters within
Canada but did
not receive support from all Irish
Catholics there who saw the
invasions as threatening
the emerging Canadian sovereignty.
In April 1866, under the command of John O'Mahony,
a band of upwards
700 (reported as small as only 400,
in some journals) members of the
arrived on the Maine shore opposite the island of
Campobello, New Brunswick, Canada !! Their intention
seize Campobello from the British. British
warships from Halifax,
Scotia were quickly on the
scene and a military force dispersed the
little assistance from the watchful eyes of U.S. Troops
Basically, no one in the U.S. federal government was
reining in the Fenians and thus losing
the Irish vote !!
As a result, the Fenians were able to organize a much
On June 1, 1866 the Fenians invaded
Canada near Fort Erie with 1100
troops invading before
the U.S. military shut down the river
brief fighting that left nine Fenians and 15 Canadians
Fenians retreated. About 850 were captured
by U.S. authorities
another 100 were caught by the
Canadian militia. Another raid a
later ended with
no casualties, largely because federal authorities
most of the Fenians’ arms and ammunition. The crackdown
few months later for political reasons, but the
damage was done; the
Fenians were virtually disbanded.
Ironically, while the 1866 raids accomplished little for
nationalism, they were a defining moment for
February 1867, this action
served to reinforce the idea of protection
various British North American Colonies of New
Scotia, Canada East, and Canada
West ‘joined’ in Confederation to form
Some Fenian factions continued fighting; a ship full of
fighters briefly landed in western
Ireland in May 1867. In 1870,
Fenian raid was
ambushed at the border and surrendered to American
authorities after they lost five dead. In October 1871,
Fenians marched for Manitoba, hoping to
join forces with Métis Indian
rebels !! They were
instead arrested by U.S. forces before they
the border. While they attempted a few more invasions
(including building an early submarine), none
of them ever really got
past the planning stages. An
anticlimactic end for a movement
thousands of men.
Other Fenian attempts to invade occurred throughout
the next week in
the St. Lawrence Valley. As many of
the weapons had in the
been confiscated by
the US army, relatively few of these men actually
became involved in the fighting. There even was a
a storage building that successfully
got back some weapons that had
been seized by the
US Army. Many were eventually returned anyway
To get the Fenians out of the area, both in the St.
Buffalo, the U.S. government purchased
rail tickets for the Fenians to
return to their homes if
the individuals involved would promise not to
more countries from the United States. Many of the
returned later if the person claiming them
could post bond that they
were not going to be used to
invade Canada again, although some were
in the raids that followed.
A Splendid AOH Cream and Sugar
** GO WEST YOUNG FENIANS !!
In the BEAUTIFUL and SPLENDID Pacific North West,
where your Happy
fear of Fenian attack plagued the Lower Mainland
British Columbia. During the 1870s and 1880s, the
was actively organizing in the States
of Washington and Oregon,
agitating to invade British
Columbia. But raids never actually
tensions were sufficient to warrant the Britain
several large warships to the new railhead at Vancouver,
British Columbia for the celebrations opening the Canadian
Railway (CPR). Although, the Last Spike was
British Columbia (apparently
‘close’ to the rail pass summit in the
on November 7, 1885, the historic CPR Engine #374,
would not pull the first passenger train into Vancouver
on the newly
completed transcontinental railway until
May 23, 1887. These
events are verified via
photographs taken at the inauguration of the
of the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1885. Shown during
occasion, three large British warships sit at anchor
in the harbour
just off the railhead and its docks.
Their presence was
required because of the
threat of Fenian attack or terrorism, as were the
numbers of troops on the first train.
Finally, a Complete AOH Place
THE AOH TODAY !!
The Ancient Order of Hibernians is America’s oldest
Fraternal Organization !! Although no
longer a secret society,
exists today as a
fraternal organization for Catholics of Irish birth
descent, although its current membership base is
comprised mostly of
those with Irish ancestry. Its
activities during the 20th and
included: lobbying on behalf of the Irish nationalist
movement and helping form the Irish national caucus
publication of the AOH newspaper, The
National Hibernian Digest; and
promotion of Irish culture through educational
Today the AOH exists in America, Canada, Ireland,
England, Wales and
Scotland, however, while the
organizations share a common thread, the
AOH is a separate and much larger organization.
Their Monthly Bulletin may be accessed via the
following Link :
Active across the United States, The Order seeks to
aid the newly
arrived Irish, both socially and economically.
The many Divisions
club facilities located throughout
the U.S. have traditionally been
among the first to
welcome new Irish immigrants. Here, the Irish
i.e., art, dance, music, and sports are fostered and
preserved. The newcomers can meet some of ‘their own’
introduced to the social atmosphere of the
The AOH has been at the
forefront for issues concerning the Irish, such
Immigration Reform; economic Incentives both here
and in Ireland;
the human rights issues addressed in
the MacBride Legislation;
Right-To-Life; and a peaceful
and just solution to the issues that
Remember, the AOH is an organization dedicated to
Without War’, i.e., desired to reunite Ireland
via political treaties
sans violence !!
The Order has also provided a continuing bridge with
Ireland for those
who are generations removed from
our ancestral homeland. The AOH
programs associated with promoting their Irish Heritage
such as the IRISH WAY PROGRAM, SCHOLARSHIPS
and NATIONAL HISTORY DAY
THE AOH EMBLEM !!
AOH Emblem is Enhanced with Symbolism !!
The emblem of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in
American is as
pictured above with the crossed flags
of Ireland and America behind
The flags are not
part of the emblem, since they are already symbols
another entity. Prior to 1937, when the tricolor
of Ireland was
adopted, Ireland was represented by
the flag of the United Irishman,
adopted in 1798,
showing a gold harp displayed on a field of
Many variations of the United Irishman Flag exist,
with one style
displayed within the ‘Fenian’ section of
this article !!
The artist who conceived the original emblem of the
Order is unknown,
but his choice of layout and devices
are, in many cases, unmistakably
evident. The emblem
is a shield, horizontally divided into three
the significance of three relating to many Irish tenets
from the mystical appeals of that number in Celtic
mythology to the
Holy Trinity itself.
The top field of the emblem depicts the sun rising over
a new Ireland,
a device not uncommon to Irish and
American crests, shields and
newspapers logos. The
appearance of the initials A.O.H. in the
sunrise indicates that the A.O.H. is a part of that
The center field shows another common device of two
hands clasped in
friendship denoting Hands across the
Sea, and representing the original
links between the
A.O.H. in Ireland and the A.O.H. in America.
proper display of this device is a blue sleeve extending
from the left
(America) and a green sleeve extending
from the right (Ireland). The
left and right positions
correspond to the geographic east-west
the two nations.
The lower field contains a harp flanked by shamrocks.
The harp is
official emblem of Ireland, and as such
should be the Brian Boru
However the harp of
the Irish Brigade of France, with the figure of a
in front, is often used to represent the Wild Geese.
Not to be confused with the Fenian convicts' newspaper
‘The Wild Goose’ (c1867), the Flight of the Wild Geese
was the departure of an Irish Jacobite army under the
command of Patrick Sarsfield from Ireland to France,
as agreed in the Treaty of Limerick on October 3, 1691,
following the end of the Williamite War in Ireland.
More broadly, the term Wild Geese is used in Irish
history to refer to Irish soldiers who left to serve in
continental European armies in the 16th, 17th and 18th
The number of shamrocks flanking the harp varies,
and while 16 per side would be
of Ireland's 32 counties, it is not always
depict that many. The significance of the shamrock
Four shamrock's also adorn the outer edges of the
shield to represent
the four provinces of Ireland.
Some presentations show the lower
Since an inverted device indicated trouble,
explained as representing Ulster, but given the age of
it is more likely that it was simply presented
that way so all the
stems would connect to the shield.
The Ancient Order of Hibernians invite all Catholics of
Irish birth or
descent to seek admittance to, what they
truly believe, is the FINEST
Irish Catholic Organization
in the World !! All they would ask is
you to live
their motto of:
Unity, and Christian Charity”
~ ~ ~
Dia‘s Muire dhuit!
(God and Mary be with you) !!
AGAIN, I wish you ALL the most SPLENDID Holiday
Season and a PROSPEROUS
Belleeking New Year !!
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Del E. Domke, Belleek Consultant
16142 N.E. 15th. Street
Bellevue, WA 98008-2711