The Connaught Telegraph's proud boast of never having missed an issue in their 168 years history is not entirely true.
The newspaper was unable to go to press on March 1st, 1947, owing to the breakdown of electricity supplies following a severe snow storm.
They published a double edition the following Saturday, March 8th, with an apology for 'any inconvenience that may have been caused to all our readers and advertisers.'
There was a strong element of regret in the apology, published above the weekly editorial column, over the fact it was the first time in the paper's existence, 119 years, that this had happened.
But the Connaught Telegraph was not alone in being disrupted by one of the worst storms in living memory back in February, 1947.
Castlebar, like hundreds of other towns throughout the country, was isolated for days.
There was no light, power, telephone, communications, newspapers, pictures or wireless.
At one time it was feared that the food and fuel shortages would become grave.
From many part of the county, remarkable stories were told of the general hold up.
The blizzard started on Monday night, February 24th, and on Tuesday morning snow to a depth of two feet had fallen. In many places there were snow drifts varying in depth from six to 15 feet.
Every night there was severe frost, and this made the task of clearing the roads a difficult one. Electric, telephone and telegraph cables and standards were blown to the ground; there was a complete suspension of traffic of all kinds, while factories, newspaper offices and all businesses depending on electric power had to close down.
The supply of candles and paraffin oil available was not nearly adequate for the unprecedented demand. The fuel position was particularly bad, and those accustomed to using electric cookers were very badly hit indeed.
The people of the rural areas were the hardest hit of all, as many of them could not get to town to collect the weekly or fortnightly ration of bread, butter, sugar etc. In fact in the Glenisland and Burren areas, many people could not leave their homes so deep was the snow.
Local bread and milk suppliers worked arduously to distribute these vital commodities and much credit was due to them for their gallant efforts.
In the Bellacorrick area, three men lost their lives. Two brothers, Patrick and Andrew McAndrew, aged 69 and 76 years respectively, and Patrick Rowland, aged 26, died after being lost in the blizzard. Their bodies were found some distance from their homes in each case.
There were many stories of long walks and feats of endurance performed by people snowbound in many parts of the county.
Mr. H. De Jong, managing director of Castlebar Bacon Company Limited, whose car was snowbound outside Mulranny, accompanied by a friend, walked the 25 miles into Castlebar in the height of the blizzard.
Another gentleman walked from Galway, 45 miles, while another walked from Ballaghaderreen, 36 miles.
John Garry, local postman, was reported missing when he did not return from his rounds to Burren. He arrived back, however, having being forced to seek shelter for one day.
Jack Flannery, another postman, had a narrow shave at Glenisland when he tried to penetrate a snowdrift 10ft. high.
Many people had narrow escapes from injury. Guard Casey, who was on duty warning people of falling eve-gutters and avalanches of snow from roofs of houses, was himself struck by an avalanche of snow and buried for a short time.
Very Rev. Fr. Frank Convey, S.M.A., who was due to return to his Mission in Liberia, sustained a fractured wrist when he fell on an ice-covered road.
Schools and factories being closed, the people of Castlebar passed the time enjoying winter sports on the slopes of Blackfort Hill.
As many as 1,000 people, young and old, could be seen tobogganing, sleighing or involved in some form of sport at Blackfort.
This was the only bright spot in a week that will long be remembered as the darkest, coldest and most cheerless that ever hit the West.
In Westport, C.I.E drivers and conductors gave harrowing accounts of their appalling experiences.
John Sheridan, mail-van driver, who left Westport for Achill on Monday, did not get back until Saturday evening.
Fuel supplies were bad and food was running out. The poor and many others would have been in a bad way for fuel were it not for Jody Moran, John' Row, who got in a supply of turf and gave it out to all and sundry without increasing the price by one penny. The same could not be said of other turf sellers.
Hundreds of birds had been frozen and in a field at Knappagh a dead fox was found with a dead hen in its mouth.
The funeral of the late Very Rev. Fr. O'Toole, P.P., Aughagower, who died in a Dublin nursing home on Sunday week, only reached Aughagower on Monday where interment took place.
In Ballyhaunis, Chancellor Prendergast presided at a meeting of townspeople held in the Parochial Hall on Monday night for the purpose of devising ways and means of procuring fuel for the poor and speeding up its delivery.
The blizzards of '47 will long have a special place in our history books.