A British Shame Forever.

During the 1650s, over 100,000 Irish children aged 10 to 14 were taken from their parents and sold as slaves in the West Indies, Virginia and New England. In this decade, 52,000 Irish (mostly women and children) were sold to Barbados and Virginia. Still 30,000 Irish men and women were also transported and sold to the highest bidder. In 1656, Cromwell ordered that 2000 Irish children be taken to Jamaica and sold as slaves to English settlers. Many people today avoid calling the Irish slaves called what they really were: Slaves. They use words such as “indentured servants” to describe what happened to the Irish. However, in most casesfrom the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish slaves were nothing more than human cattle.
The Irish Slave Trade – The Forgotten “White” Slaves The Slaves That Time Forgot.
They came as slaves; vast human cargo transported on tall British ships bound for the Americas. They were shipped by the hundreds of thousands and included men, women, and even the youngest of children. Whenever they rebelled or even disobeyed an order, they were punished in the harshest ways. Slave owners would hang their human property by their hands and set their hands or feet on fire as one form of punishment.
They were burned alive and had their heads placed on pikes in the marketplace as a warning to other captives. We don’t really need to go through all of the gory details, do we? We know all too well the atrocities of the African slave trade. But, are we talking about African slavery? King James II and Charles I also led a continued effort to enslave the Irish. Britain’s famed Oliver Cromwell furthered this practice of dehumanizing one’s next door neighbor. The Irish slave trade began when James II sold 30,000 Irish prisoners as slaves to the New World. His Proclamation of 1625 required Irish political prisoners be sent overseas and sold to English settlers in the West Indies.
By the mid 1600s, the Irish were the main slaves sold to Antigua and Montserrat. At that time, 70% of the total population of Montserrat were Irish slaves. Ireland quickly became the biggest source of human livestock for English merchants. The majority of the early slaves to the New World were actually white. From 1641 to 1652, over 500,000 Irish were killed by the English and another 300,000 were sold as slaves. Ireland’s population fell from about 1,500,000 to 600,000 in one single decade. Families were ripped apart as the British did not allow Irish dads to take their wives and children with them across the Atlantic. This led to a helpless population of homeless women and children. Britain’s solution was to auction them off as well. During the 1650s, over 100,000 Irish children between the ages of 10 and 14 were taken from their parents and sold as slaves in the West Indies, Virginia and New England. In this decade, 52,000 Irish (mostly women and children) were sold to Barbados and Virginia. Another 30,000 Irish men and women were also transported and sold to the highest bidder. In 1656, Cromwell ordered that 2000 Irish children be taken to Jamaica and sold as slaves to English settlers. Many people today will avoid calling the Irish slaves what they truly were: Slaves. They’ll come up with terms like “Indentured Servants” to describe what occurred to the Irish.
However, in most cases from the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish slaves were nothing more than human cattle. As an example, the African slave trade was just beginning during this same period. It is well recorded that African slaves, not tainted with the stain of the hated Catholic theology and more expensive to purchase, were often treated far better than their Irish counterparts. African slaves were very expensive during the late 1600s (50 Sterling). Irish slaves came cheap (no more than 5 Sterling). If a planter whipped or branded or beat an Irish slave to death, it was never a crime. A death was a monetary setback, but far cheaper than killing a more expensive African.
The English masters quickly began breeding the Irish women for both their own personal pleasure and for greater profit. Children of slaves were themselves slaves, which increased the size of the master’s free workforce. Even if an Irish woman somehow obtained her freedom, her kids would remain slaves of her master. Thus, Irish moms, even with this new found emancipation, would seldom abandon their kids and would remain in servitude. In time, the English thought of a better way to use these women (in many cases, girls as young as 12) to increase their market share: The settlers began to breed Irish women and girls with African men to produce slaves with a distinct complexion.
These new “mulatto” slaves brought a higher price than Irish livestock and, likewise, enabled the settlers to save money rather than purchase new African slaves. This practice of interbreeding Irish females with African men went on for several decades and was so widespread that, in 1681, legislation was passed “forbidding the practice of mating Irish slave women to African slave men for the purpose of producing slaves for sale.” In short, it was stopped only because it interfered with the profits of a large slave transport company. England continued to ship tens of thousands of Irish slaves for more than a century. Records state that, after the 1798 Irish Rebellion, thousands of Irish slaves were sold to both America and Australia.
There were horrible abuses of both African and Irish captives. One British ship even dumped 1,302 slaves into the Atlantic Ocean so that the crew would have plenty of food to eat. There is little question that the Irish experienced the horrors of slavery as much (if not more in the 17th Century) as the Africans did. There is, also, very little question that those brown, tanned faces you witness in your travels to the West Indies are very likely a combination of African and Irish ancestry. In 1839, Britain finally decided on it’s own to end it’s participation in Satan’s highway to hell and stopped transporting slaves. While their decision did not stop pirates from doing what they desired, the new law slowly concluded THIS chapter of nightmarish Irish misery.
But, if anyone, black or white, believes that slavery was only an African experience, then they’ve got it completely wrong. Irish slavery is a subject worth remembering, not erasing from our memories. But, where has this ever been taught in our public (and PRIVATE) schools???? Where are stories of Irish Slavery in the history books? Why is it so seldom discussed? Do the memories of hundreds of thousands of Irish victims merit more than a mention from an unknown writer? Or is their story to be one that their English pirates intended: have the Irish story utterly and completely disappear as if it never happened. None of the Irish victims ever made it back to their homeland to describe their ordeal.
These are the lost slaves; the ones that time and biased history books-conveniently forgot-By John Martin

God Bless and keep reading

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Trudeau’s Middle Class and those working hard to join it???

SWhat first thing that comes to mind is this question, what about the working class or is there such a thing. I think there must be, perhaps Trudeau may considers those working hard to join the middle class to be the working class. He proudly tells the middle class he has put more money in there pockets, approximately $1600 per year? Such a happy and pretty election promo photo!! but I’m a little confused, is the middle class some sort of elite group of people. I’m a senior and living on a fixed income, I have worked hard all my life. Never once did I apply for EI or any other form of government assistance. So Prime Minister Trudeau how can I be elevated to the middle class???????? I don’t think it is going to happen on the micro raise we seniors received a short while ago. I suppose if you used my raise (approx. 50 cents per month) in your ad, it would read something like this. The average senior is now $7.00  better off thanks to the Government. Its my opinion that if you have any hope of being reelected its time you helped all citizens that are in need. We have homeless, hungry, disabled, indigenous and veterans. Oops! sorry I forgot, veterans are asking for more than you can give. Anyway Justin, its highly likely you will be joining the unemployed class in October. You may be wondering why I posted the photo of Benefit, and auction. The provincial government (liberal) refused to cover cost of my chemo treatment. Makes an 80 year old veteran very aware he is asking for too much!!

God Bless and keep reading

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The Mighty Firefly

Finally on August 4th I managed to attend a car show. Twin Shores near Darnley was the host of this show, money raised was for the IWK children’s hospital. Linda drove me there and back in beautiful sunshine. Twin Shores is a very busy summer resort within walking distance of the beach. The Mighty Firefly performed as it should, but I have to say getting in and out is almost as difficult as in an MGB or Midget!. The shows these days tend to feature more muscle cars than antiques. There was a strong showing of a variety of Mustangs. A few from the sixties but most more modern editions. No real LBCs unfortunately, but there was one rather interesting 1948 XK 100 Jaguar. All in all it was a pleasant Sunday afternoon, next show Cymbria August 24th. Hope to see some of the old Antique Car Club members there. It seems most of the old guys like me are disappearing from the hobby, rarely meet anyone I know these days. I have been a life member of the PEI Antique Club since the mid 1970s, I joined with a 1963 .Humber Super Snipe, but later concentrated on Rover’s, hence my name Irishrover. I joined Batans (British Automobile Touring Assoc of NS) in late 1970s early 1980s can’t remember exactly . I hardly know any of the members there either, just a handful of old codgers like myself. Nevertheless, this has been a life long hobby that I have thoroughly enjoy my whole life. Now I sit in my chair dreaming of finding a rare old British Austin Rover, etc.

God Bless and keep reading

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A little Weekend Humour

A little boy was doing his math homework. He said to himself, “Two plus five, that son of a bitch is seven. Three plus six, that son of a bitch is nine…”

His mother heard what he was saying and gasped, “What are you doing?”

The little boy answered, “I’m doing my math homework, Mom.”

“And this is how your teacher taught you to do it?” the mother asked.
“Yes,” he answered.

Infuriated, the mother asked the teacher, “What are you teaching my son in math?”

The teacher replied, “Right now, we are learning addition”
The mother asked, “And are you teaching them to say two plus two, that son of a bitch is four?”

After the teacher stopped laughing, she answered, “What I taught them was, two plus two, THE SUM OF WHICH, is four.”

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My late shipmate Bob Lamb

It’s the only photo I have of Bob, it was taken in 1964 aboard HM/SM Alcide. In the fore end compartment ,Bob Ted, me, Barney can’t remember the other lad by name. Good times long ago. RIP shipmate.

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No Planet B!!

Listening to the news, I hear of floods in England, forest fires in Siberia, heat waves in Japan, drought in Australia, crisis in India and several other nations situated around the world. Here in Canada I believe the great majority of the population are doing their best to curb pollution and reduce their carbon foot print. However, half of our nations elected Premiers are fighting with the Federal government over carbon tax. They are hell bent on challenging the government in the Supreme Courts of Canada. I have to assume these premiers are intelligent people, and they surely know the risks of changing climates. I’m not saying the government is doing the right thing imposing the carbon tax. Nevertheless, it must be a wiser course of action than wasting huge sums of tax payers money fighting a court case. The five premiers would do better to engage the government in serious discussion, and not waste tax dollars in this futile cause. Our leaders need to come together and seek solutions to the serious world threat, instead of squabbling among themselves. The time of party politics is over,  elected members both Federal and Provincial must dedicate all their efforts to this looming problem. If we can’t come to a sensible solution very soon, it may be too late. It has been said many times, “there is no planet B” so instead of blaming other countries, why can’t we be a world leader. We have heard a variety of naysayers each claiming things like, we aren’t as bad as other countries. We have the trees that are reducing our carbon so don’t need this tax. The list goes on, but in the meantime global warming and severe weather patterns continue unabated. It is time for everyone to pull together in the hope of meeting the challenge of climate change. It’s beyond reason that we have to fight with elected officials to make them do the right and necessary thing. God Bless and keep reading.

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Promises to the next FPTP

Well the big item election promises from island liberals is underway. First out of the starting gate was MacAulay with his 18.5 million climate research science building. And guess where it will be (maybe) built, in MacAulays riding of course. Next, although not right on his heels was Casey declaring federal support dollars for affordable housing in Charlottetown. The two none starters so far appear to be Easter and Morrissey. Well Easter did sneak his face into a photo about a federal road building grant. It sounded real good at first, but when explained it was over four years, it turned out to be less than previous grants. Poor Wayne! What can he build in his riding?? Then we have Robert Morrissey in Western PEI, anyone remember him? He is no better off than Easter, the best he has come up with to date, is the liberal middle class gimmick. Apparently middle class islanders have more money in their pockets thanks to Bobby! Funny how we rarely hear from our island MPs until election time , then the promises pour fourth. Still Wayne and Bobby will really have to pull a rabbit out of the hat soon. Lots of serious competition in both their districts. In fact I would think the competition will be really tough in all four districts. People are fed up, angry and they want change. So this election will be very interesting and I would not be surprised to see a couple maybe all of our long time do little, MPs disappear into the sunset. I’m looking forward the federal election probably more than our four sitting MPs are!!! God Bless and keep reading

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July 31st 1970, Black Tot Day.

I had left the Navy three years earlier, so miss this momentous shift in Royal Navy policy. The 31st of July 1970 was the last issue of the daily ration of rum, better known on the mess deck as the tot. Every day at 1130 hrs every ship in the navy would pipe “Up Spirits” and rum bo’ suns would gather for the official issue. Alas the well known and popular pipe will never to be heard again. Rum ration had been issued in the navy for some three hundred years. In the twentieth century the issue was changed to two parts water to one part rum.  This was necessary to curb the saving of the rum ration and later binge drinking aboard ship. While it is sad to see the end of a tradition, It was surely necessary, dangerous to have crew member under the influence while driving a nuclear submarine or any other warship. Rum is occasionally issued for special events, and is called splicing the “Main Brace”. On the mess deck the rum was measured and then passed to each sailor. It was a  strict ritual, one sailor poured to exact amount into a tot glass, he usual kept one, sometimes two fingers in the glass. So no one received the exact amount. Next, another sailor checked your name off the list. Both the measurer and checker were each offered a sip of your tot. Using the fingers in the glass always resulted in some rum left over. This was called Queens (in my day) and was passed around until finished. The chance to issue or check was rotated around all mess members of age. Under twenty one a sailor didn’t qualify for a tot. On ones birthday a cup was placed on the mess table and each member tipped a tiny amount of his rum into the cup. The birthday boy then was usually tucked into a hammock or bunk until he sobered up. Rum was also used as currency, one might be offered half a tot to stand someone’s duty whilst alongside. Or any one of many other favours. Oh look at the time! I think I just heard up spirits piped, must dash I’m the ticker off today.   God Bless and keep reading.

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What a Deal!!!!!!!!WOW!!!!!

Attached you will find the email invitation I just received from the Royal Canadian Legion. I’m overwhelmed by their generous gesture and kindness, and its all for me.  I cant imagine it was really intended for me. Not after the letters and posts I have published over the last few years surely. Do you think they will really let me return for free? Will I be awarded some of those lovely pretend medals to wear. Can I march and salute with those famous and decorated associates like Tom Eagles et al. Seriously! Desperate times indeed!! The email was very colourful, photos of Canadian soldiers marching in full regalia. It was almost tempting, almost.

Royal Canadian Legion Veteran Welcome Program

Serving and retired Canadian Armed Forces and RCMP members are eligible for a free one-year membership to welcome them to the Legion. Membership registration is completed through Dominion Command, and members can transfer to a local Branch afterwards.

Decided not to learn more!!!!! God Bless and keep reading

Posted in Family and veterans, HM Submarines, HMS Cockade, hms ganges, military, The Royal Navy & Me | Leave a comment

Walking in the Shadow of Veterans.

When I think about the present day legion, I recall legion members from years ago. Here on Prince Edward Island we had a Premier in the early 1980s who was a decorated veteran. Angus MacLean flew with bomber command during the war, was shot down over Nazi Germany. Escaped and returned safely home, he ended his service as a decorated Wing Commander. On PEI he became a farmer and a politician, one of the islands best Premiers. His many medals and awards included the Order of Canada, DFC and several other war medals. I recall in around 1981-2 he attended a Remembrance Day ceremony at our village cenotaph and hall. After the service I remember many of the young children gathering around him and asking about his medals. They had great interest in learning what he had done in the war. Question like, was he scared, did he kill anyone, did he parachute from his plane and so on. It strikes me that children today would have similar interests and questions. However, today’s children assuming the legion member was a decorated war hero would ask how he earned his medals? Quite a serious question and certainly embarrassing to a member such as Tom Eagles. He wears a total (on last count) of thirteen medals! Wow! Children couldn’t help but be impressed with this apparent war hero! How would he answer? Maybe pretend, after all most of his medals are pretend. Tom Eagles has never served a day in the military, Coast guard, police force or any other uniform.Yet he wears the legion uniform with his legion medals and has represented the legion at home and abroad. Are these the kind of legion hero’s we have representing veterans in 2019?  These men with their pretend medals  do not walk in the shadow of our thousands of serving, retired or deceased veterans. In my opinion they do not honour the veterans, the Poppy or Remembrance Day, instead they cast a long shadow of deception and shame.

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