July 12, 2007

Today is Orangemen’s day in Newfoundland. Since I’ve got a lot of Newfie in me (my grandparents on my mom’s side were from Port Blanford and Trinity East), it’s kind of an intriguing and curious thing to me. What, exactly, is Orangemen’s Day, you ask? Here’s an interesting link:

Orangemen’s Day, July 12th, commemorates the day in July 1690 when the forces of constitutionalism won out over the forces of anti-Parliamentarianism at the River Boyne in Ireland: King William of Orange, the Protestant King of England defeated former King James, a Catholic. The Orange Order was established a century after the Battle of the Boyne and steadily grew in the 19th century as a patriotic bulwark against what many Protestants saw as treasonous Catholicism. By the end of the 19th century Orangemen’s parades were commonplace in many Newfoundland communities. The parade was one part of a series of events through the day, culminating in a public dinner and dance (often called a “Time”).

However popular Orangemen’s Day has been, on the northeast coast mid-July is at the peak of the inshore cod-fishery. A single day parading and dancing might mean a loss of ten percent of a fisherman’s annual income. Thus many communities moved their Orange celebrations to the Christmas season, when no work was necessary. Thus we find Orangemen’s Times on St. Stephen’s Day (December 26th) and New Year’s Day, as well as other dates (cf. Hiscock 1997:129-134; 317-318).

A couple of thoughts: my guess this link might be a little outdated, as I don’t think there’s a whole lot of cod fishing going on around “The Rock” since the Canadian government pretty much shut down the fishing industry several years ago to stop the rapid decline of the fishing stocks there. Also, I love that dinner/dance thing being called “a ‘time'” – whenever the old Boston pols like Billy Bulger would have a fundraiser (like the big St. Patrick’s Day breakfast tradition), it’s always called a “time”. Course, the Irish and the Newfies have a lot of crossover when it comes to their cultures.

BTW, my most recent post over at CrabAppleLane Blog can be found here.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 11:58 | Comments (4)
4 Comments »
  1. Happy orange day, death to all irish catholics and long live irish protestants. Hey this is a nice holiday, nothing worse than an irish catholic. Might as well make this death to all catholics irish or not.

    Comment by Patrick O'grady — October 9, 2007 @ 10:13 am


  2. Happy orange day, death to all irish catholics and long live irish protestants. Hey this is a nice holiday, nothing worse than an irish catholic. Might as well make this death to all catholics irish or not.

    Comment by Patrick O'grady — October 9, 2007 @ 10:13 am


  3. Happy orange day, death to all irish catholics and long live irish protestants. Hey this is a nice holiday, nothing worse than an irish catholic. Might as well make this death to all catholics irish or not.

    Comment by Patrick O'grady — October 9, 2007 @ 10:13 am


  4. I’m not sure where you came from or why you’re only commenting on this post now, but I’ll be happy to leave your comment up just to show anyone who happens by it how incredibly ignorant and stupid you sound. You give Irish Proestants a bad name. Now back under the rock you crawled from!

    Comment by The Great White Shank — October 9, 2007 @ 3:29 pm


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