Select Doyle Miscellany

Here are some Doyle stories and accounts over the years:

The Gaelic Word for Foreigner

During the Viking age the term Dubhghoill was used to describe the Vikings, usually Danes, and the term Fionnghoill ("fair foreigners") was used to describe the Norwegians.  It is commonly held that these terms were used to distinguish the darker-haired Danes from faire-haired Norwegians.  Later Fionnghoill was used to describe Scottish Gaels from the Hebrides and sometimes the Hiberno-Normans.  The most common term for the Hiberno-Normans was Seanghoill ("old foreigners") to distinguish them from the Dubhghoill, the new or dark foreigners.

Old Killadreenan (Wicklow) Burials in the 18th Century

Simon Doyly
Elinor Doyle
James Doyly
Margaret Doyle           
Darby Doyle
Edward Doyle
Rev. Laughlin Doyle
Hugh Doyle
Christopher Doyle
Matthew Doyle        
Sarah Doyle
Patrick Doyle
Morgan Doyle
Bridget Doyle

Mary Doyle in the 1798 Insurrection

Many heroines had no chronicler but Mary Doyle of Castleboro stood out for her gallantry at the Battle of New Ross in Wexford.  She cut off the cross belts of the fallen dragoons with a bill hook and handed them together with the cartouche boxes [cases for holding gun cartridges] to her comrades.

She is referred to in P. F. Kavanagh’s A Popular History of the Insurrection of 1798 as "an amazon named Doyle, who marched with the insurgent army and bore herself as gallantly as the most courageous man." There is no conclusive evidence as to what happened to Mary Doyle after the Battle of Ross.  But it is thought that she perished in the flames that consumed much of the town at that time.

Joseph Holt recorded in his Memoirs: "We had several women in the camp;" and he described how the women were engaged in making gunpowder.

The Doyles' Migration from Canada to Iowa

Bobbie Doyle had arrived in Canada from Ireland in 1833.  Six years later, he married Bessie Smith.  At that time Bobbie taught school and owned a 100 acre farm near Perth.  Once, when he served on a jury, he met a man who was organizing a group of Catholics to go to the US and settle in Oregon territory.  Unknown to his wife and family, he sold his farm in preparation to moving.

The family moved by a team of oxen into the US.  They were on their way to Omaha to meet more immigrants and to form a group large enough to give protection from the danger of scalping by Indians.  When Mrs. Doyle heard this, she said, "That settled it!" for she would go no place where her children would be scalped by the Indians.

The family tried to buy a farm in Illinois on the Pecatonica River but, because of the ending of the Civil War, they were unable to get a clear deed.  They continued west and, since the Illinois Central Railroad was being built, Mr. Doyle wanted to put his wife and children on the train so they could ride as far west as the train would go.  Since she refused, Grandfather Smith was put on the train with two wooden chests and he went as far west as Aplington, Iowa, until the family arrived with the ox team.

Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes

In 1886, Conan Doyle started writing the novel which catapulted him to fame.  At first it was named A Tangled Skein and the two main characters were called Sheridan Hope and Ormond Sacker.  Two years later this novel was published in Beeton's Christmas Annual, under the title A Study in Scarlet.  This introduced the world to Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson.

Five years later, he made the most profitable decision of his life, that of writing a series of short stories featuring the same characters.  By then, Conan Doyle was represented by A. P. Watt whose duty was to relieve him of "hateful bargaining."  Hence, it was Watt who made the deal with The Strand magazine to publish the Sherlock Holmes stories.  The "image" of Holmes was created by Sidney Paget.  This collaboration lasted for many decades and was instrumental in making the author, the magazine and the artist world famous.

However, in 1893, in spite of everyone's entreaties, Conan Doyle decided to get rid of Sherlock Holmes  During a trip to Switzerland, he found the spot where his hero was to come to his end.  In The Final Problem, published in December 1893, Sherlock Holmes and Professor Moriarty plunged to their deaths at The Reichenbach Falls.  As a result, twenty thousand readers cancelled their subscriptions to The Strand.

Eight years later, to the delight of thousands of frustrated fans, The Strand magazine published the first episode of The Hound of the Baskervilles.  This Sherlock Holmes novel became, and is to this day, a worldwide sensation.

Dan Doyle: The Life and Death of a Wild Rover
Dan Doyle’s dad, like most of the Irish in Scotland in the 1860s, was employed variously as an iron or coal miner or as a general laborer.  It was hard work for little pay.  Life couldn’t have been good to him.  He died of paralysis in August 1870 at the age of 36 in the poor house in Paisley.  So Dan, aged only 6, would have been in the poor house watching his dad die.  His mother soon abandoned him as, throughout the 1870's, he grew up with his father’s family, his aunt Cecilia and his uncle Felix. 

In 1881, at the age of 16, Dan was employed as a coal miner.  However, by 1889 he was in England playing football for Grimsby Town FC.  He then went to Everton. living in a boarding house with five other Evertonians.  He stayed with that team for a year, 1890-91, the season they won their first league championship, and then moved to the almighty Glasgow Celtic.

Dan was to play a good six seasons for Celtic and was capped for Scotland.  He is still well-remembered by Celtic fans, enough to merit his own book with the fabulous title of The Life and Death of a Wild Rover.

"Legendary Scotland and Celtic captain Dan Doyle was a character unlike any other, before or since, in the world of football. A brilliant player but with a stormy temper and a troubled relationship with gambling and drink, Doyle's life on and off the pitch makes for an incredible story. 

Until his retirement in 1899, Doyle was always a controversial figure.  Involved in an on-pitch incident that resulted in the death of another player, prone to vocal outbursts against opponents, referees and the FA and even the subject of a prolonged campaign in the English press to have him permanently banned from playing in the country, Doyle never tempered his character.  He was free to do as he liked because of his incredible gift as a footballer and because a Celtic or Scotland team with him was infinitely better than one without him.

Dan Doyle: The Life and Death of a Wild Rover is the story of Scotland's first bad-boy football superstar."

Doyle's Cafe
Welcome to Doyle's - home of the best corned beef and cabbage dinner and the largest selection of draft beer in New England!  Over the years Doyle's has been known for good food, conversation, and a wide variety of draft beer.

Doyle's is regularly recognized as being the best neighborhood bar and restaurant in Boston.  Authentic wartime posters hang over the original bar which dates back to 1882.  It was Dennis Doyle who built the original Doyle's at that time.  His son Barney assumed ownership after Dennis's death in 1900 and it stayed with the Doyle family until 1971.  During prohibition not a single day was lost.  Doyle's was a speakeasy until the glorious day in 1933 after repeal when none other than Mayor Curley personally opened Doye's up again "legitimately."

Because of its authentic atmosphere Doyle's is often used as a location for movie scenes, television commercials, and book signings.

Paddy Doyle - The God Squad

Paddy Doyle was born in Wexford in 1951.  His mother died of cancer four years later.  His father commited suicide shortly thereafter.  Paddy Doyle was then sentenced at an Irish district court to be detained in an industrial school for eleven years.  He was just four years old.

The title of his book - the God squad - is a testament of the institutionalized Ireland of only 25 years ago, as seen through the bewildered eyes of a child.  During his detention, Paddy was viciously assaulted and sexually abused by his religious custodians.  Within three years his experiences began to result in physical manifestations of trauma.  He was taken one night to hospital and left there, never to see his custodians again.

So began his long round of hospitals, mainly in the company of dying old men, while doctors tried to diagnose his condition.  This period of his life, during which he was a constant witness to death, culminating in brain surgery at the age of 10 - by which time he had become permanently disabled.

His book is the true story of a survivor, told with a lack of bitterness for one so shockingly and shamefully treated.  In Paddy Doyle's own words:

"It is about society's abdication of responsibility to a child. The fact that I was that child, and that the book is about my life, is largely irrelevant. The probability is that there were, and still are, thousands of 'me's.'"

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