holds a proud and distinguished place in the annals of the G.A.A because
on a wet and windy 6th October in 1885 Martin J. Murphy's racecourse
(in the vicinity of the Back Strand) hosted one of the first ever
championship athletic meetings held under the auspices of the G.A.A.
The President of the Association (Maurice Davin) could not have selected
a more ideal location for the purpose, as the ground was perfectly
level, while a large Stand provided adequate shelter for the great
concourse of spectators. Richard Power, M.P and Edmond Leamy acted
as Stewards at the meeting while Maurice Davin acted as referee. Dan
Fraher of Dungarvan was one of the famous people who competed at the
sports and won the hop, step and jump, 31 feet 8 and a quarter inches.
This of course, was a standing hop-step and jump, an event not practiced
A dinner was held afterwards in Quigley's Hotel (the present Hibernian
Hotel), at which Maurice Davin was highly praised for his organizing
of the event, not alone beforehand, but also on the field itself.
That was indeed a glorious start for Tramore's connection with the
G.A.A at the dawn of the great Association.
In the 1951 Tramore decided they would form a new club and for that
very purpose a meeting was held in the assembly rooms on Tuesday 27th
November 1951. A committee was elected. And so new Tramore GAA club
was born which was named “Cuman Micheál MacCraith” in honour a Poleberry
patriot, whose history follows.
Michael McGrath died for Ireland at Pickardstown, Tramore
on January 7th 1921.
|In the townsland of Ballinattin, which
is not far removed from Pairc Mhic Craith a red-brick Shrine
stands today as a memorial to all the County Waterford men who
gave their lives for Ireland in the War of Independence. One
of these was Micheal Mac Craith of Poleberry whose name lives
on in the Club and Gaelic Field in Tramore, which have been
named after him. He was one of the brave Volunteers who took
part in the Pickardstown Ambush of three lorry loads of British
troops around midnight on the 7th January 1921. In the closing
stages of the fight he received his fatal wounds, as also did
Tom O'Brien of Dunhill. "Mikie" as he was popularly known, was
a keen sportsman and played Gaelic football with Ballytruckle.
Indeed, it is recalled that he played in a match against Rathgormack
in Tramore in 1919, the pitch being situated a few hundred yards
from Pairc Mhic Craith, which proudly bears his name.
He was a carpenter by trade and every Christmas he volunteered
to erect the Crib for the Ursuline Nuns in Waterford. At the
Inquest held in Waterford, the Medical Officer of Health said
that identification was proven by two Carpenter and Joiners
Union Cards found on the body with the name Michael McGrath
on each. Death in his opinion was due to a gunshot wound to
the head. After Mass in St. John's Church his body was taken
to Carbally Churchyard for interment in the family plot with
his parents, Thomas and Annie McGrath. Thousands lined the streets
to pay their final respects to the first Waterford City man
to fall in the War of Independence. He was only 25 years of
age. It is but fitting that the loud plaudits still re-echo
from Pairc Mhic Craith across the glen which in 1921 echoed
back the rumble of gunfire, while the small red-brick Shrine
in the distance bears silent witness to the glories of the past.
1971 Jan 3rd 50th Anniversary
“We mourn their loss,
God rest their souls today,
Brave men who for Ireland
gave their lives away"
We recommend that you buy the very interesting
book on the history of the club to find out more.