Isles of the Sea 1901

Jack Mooney 3

During the East Coast Skiff rowing season I got talking to my good friend Mick Curry. We were discussing an article in NewsFour about the Ringsend Gaelic Football team Inse Na Mara who won the 1901 All Ireland. Isles of the Sea, their name in English, were Dublin Champions in 1890, 1895, and in 1901 and were awarded the Dublin Championship cup to keep permanently.

Mick mentioned the cup (below) is in the museum in Collins Barracks near Heuston station and that Jackie Mooney would know more about the cup.

When I met Jackie he brought along some photographs. One of them was of the 1901 All Ireland Championship’s Inse na Mara (above). In this photo Jackie Mooney’s grandfather, Thomas Doyle, is seated third from the left in the front row. Also in the picture is Val Harris.

Long before the likes of Kevin Moran played for both Manchester United Football Club and the Dublin GAA team, Val Harris, a Ringsender, was playing football for Shelbourne, Everton and Ireland as well as Gaelic football for Dublin.

In the 1901 Dublin Championship final, Isles of the Sea defeated Ballymun Kickhams. Isles had four Whelans in the team. I understand there is still a relative living in Ringsend. Perhaps our readers might have some more information on this famous team.

Isles of the Sea now qualified for the 1901 All Ireland Final against London Hibernians, winning 0-14 to 0-2 points. Captain of the opposing London Hibernians was Sam Maguire, for whom the All-Ireland trophy would later be named.

Jackie Mooney himself was a good centre forward with Shamrock Rovers, who were founded in Ringsend. On the 2nd of October 1963 at Dalymount Park Jackie played in the representative team of the League of Ireland, against the English team; The Football League.

Jack Mooney 1

This English team were a star team of the time and would be thinking of the game as a stroll but as often happens with Irish/English soccer matches, the Irish lads rose above themselves. This league of Ireland team defeated a top-class English league team by 2 goals to 1, scored by Eddie Bailham and Ronnie Whelan, at a packed Dalymount Park.

In writing this story for Jackie it shows once again the many sporting talents of Ringsenders, from skiff rowing, Gaelic football and soccer, to camogie and hockey. Come on the Paddy. Come on Stella. My thanks to Jackie Mooney.

Pictured: Isles of the Sea (Dublin Selection)
McCullough (Dolphin’s goal), J. Fahy (Kickhams), Dan Holland (Isles), J.C. O’Brien (Kickhams), T. Doyle (Isles), McCann (Ben Edairs), J. Darcy (Isles) (Captain), P. ‘Cocker’ Daly (Parnell), M. Madigan (Kickhams), P. Redmond (Dun Leary United), M. Brien (Isles), McCann (Dolphins), J. Whelan (Isles), T. Lawless (Isles) and Val Harris (Isles).

By Jimmy Purdy