28th August 1915


Of Flanagan and the Eel


(Told by Mr. "Ram" Molloy)

A exciting scene was witnessed at Dalkey a few evenings ago , when a conger eel of huge dimensions was captured by that well known angler Mr. Willie Flanagan. Mr Flanagan, accompanied by Mr. Ned Carroll, Mr. Mick Flanagan, and Mr. Pat McBride, set out for an evenings fishing, and it is superfluous to remark that the denizens of the finny deep had a rough time of it at the hands, or rather hooks, of this distinguised quartette. Several fine specimens of the square nosed gurnet fell to the hook of Mr. McBride, while Mr. Mick Flanagan landed some splendid mackeral and also several good specimens of rock bream. Mr. Carroll was relentlessly pursued by hard luck throughout the evening, as his line got entangled in the boat, which he nearly upset by pulling it in. He subsequently, after a hard struggle, landed a seagull, which was bathing in the vicinity, but with the exception of a whiting weighing two ounces, he met with no success from a piscatorial point of view. It was nearing nightfall when Mr. Flanagan felt a severe tug at his line, and was almost pulled out of the boat. He held on, however, with grim tenacity, and presently a huge conger eel reared its crested head above the billows. The monster fish took a hasty survey of the occupants of the boat and speedily returned to the depths again. Then a titanic struggle commenced- a tug of war between the four anglers and the eel, which Mr. McBride said to the writer strongly resembled a sea serpent. Matters were going badly with the fishermen, their boat being dragged hither and thither by the frantic eel, whose sinuous movements aroused the unstinted admiration of the large crowd which had assembled on the beach. At length however, Mr. Carroll, with commendable promptitude, seized a tongs which was fortunately in the boat, and grasping the fish in a grip of iron, hauled it, or as much of it as would fit, into the boat.

In the meantime one of the oars was lost, but Mr. Mick Flanagan rose to the occasion, and using the tongs as an oar, successfully rowed ashore.

The eel, which measured 19feet 2and half inches was drawn up on the beach, and hearty congratulations were showered upon the gallant quartette, who seemed none the worse for their exciting and somewhat agitating experience.

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