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Irish War of Independence centenary

21 November 1920 - Part 4

Outside Dublin

With all the shenanigans within The Pale, events elsewhere tend to get overlooked.

Head Constable John Kearney (51), a native of Athlone, Co Westmeath, was fatally injured when shot in Needham Street, Newry, Co Down just after leaving evening devotions in the Dominican church.

Constable Harry Jays (22), a native of Hampshire. He was shot and killed as he and Constable Mills were walking through the village of Leap, Co Cork. Mills was hit in the arm and leg and made his way to the RIC Barracks for help. Jays body was found later on near the scene of the shooting. He had joined the RIC in January so presumably could be called a Black and Tan.

Constable Isaac Rea (20), from Durrus, Co Cork. He was fired at from a passing car as he spoke to a Miss Russell in Cappoquin, Co Waterford. Miss Russell was wounded in the leg. Sergeant Patrick Walsh was also wounded. Rea was a January recruit to the force and he died on December 27th. It’s also possible that this event took place on the latter date, sources vary.

Austin Cowley was shot dead by Private John Stride of the South Wales Borderers at Navan Workhouse. Cowley, who was deaf, failed to halt when challenged by Stride who was on sentry duty. Cowley age 67 was an inmate in the Workhouse Infirmary.
 
MA/MSPC/RO/8 Dublin Brigade (pensions ) 7th. Battalion.

I paraphrase a letter from the minister of Defence, " the old IRA"

in connection with the interview from the delegation from the brigade __ Several Irregularities, men with good service records were not granted pension whilst those with a lesser service record did receive a pension.

In our case it was the fault of the verifying officer whose appointment was not autherised by the officers of this battalion. His first act was to secure a pension for himself and his brother then opposed pensions for other officers some of higher rank and many with much better service records than his .

Crezus Jist , what a git. now a secondary diversion n will have to be undertaken at some point to see if these rascals got their just desserts. You have to be focused when conducting family history searches but some great stories can be found to distract you .
What luck have you had with the pensions lot at the Irish Defence Ministry? I have received no reply from them despite it being an enquiry of a fairly general nature but backed up with specific details, one in other words that should only take a minute or two to answer.
 
21 November 1920 - Part 2

Croke Park


The Tipperary team photographed before the match

A combined force of military and RIC mounted what was supposed to be a search operation on the crowd, of about 5,000 people, attending a football match between Dublin and Tipperary in Croke Park. The plan was to surround the ground man all exits and search every man leaving the ground. Instead, at 3.25 pm about 10 minutes into the match, some Black and Tans entered the ground at the Canal End and opened fire into the crowd. The firing went on for 90 seconds with over 200 rounds fired. Fourteen people were killed outright or were fatally injured. The dead were;


Michael Hogan (24, pictured above), Captain of the Tipperary team and the only player to die. Hogan was a member of the IRA back in Tipperary.

Jane Boyle (26), Dublin. The only woman to die on the day. She was in attendance with her fiancé to whom she was to be married the following week.

James Burke (44), Dublin

Michael Feery (40), Dublin.

James Matthews (38), Dublin

Patrick O’Dowd (57), Dublin

Jerome O’Leary (10), Dublin

Tom Ryan (27), Wexford

John Scott (14), Dublin

James Teehan (26), Tipperary

Joe Traynor (21), Dublin

Daniel Carroll (31), Tipperary (died 23 November)

Tom Hogan (19), Limerick (died 26 November)

William Robinson (11), Dublin (died 23 November)

In addition to the dead, about 80 people were injured during the disaster. Among them was Jim Egan, another Tipperary player. Egan, also a member of the IRA, would be killed during the Civil War.

Tipperary will be playing Cork tomorrow in the Munster Football Final. In honour of the occasion the Tipperary team will be playing in 1920 replica jerseys.
Has there ever been a definitive answer as to what the Auxies thought they were going to achieve at Croke Park?

It seems that the official version was that they went there on a search and arrest operation but were fired on by members of the crowd (wow, that excuse never gets old does it?) and returned fire. The other version is that some of the Auxies just lost their heads firing wildly and then the crowd stampeded.

None of which adds up, Hogan was shot on the field, he was targeted, as was another man crawling to his aid. Two kids were shot, one up a tree, another on a wall, although they could perhaps have been hit by wild firing. But then there are the reports of men killed outside in the street, one of whom may well have been bayoneted, although this isn't confirmed.

Presumably somebody in Dublin Castle must have made some sort of enquiry and a report must have been made, has that ever been released? Was it a genuine search operation that rapidly got out of control or was it what it seemed at the time merely an act of blind vengeance by a bunch of ill-disciplined men who had been allowed off the leash for far too long?

ETA: I should read the links first, I see the RTE piece posted by @bohs_man does provide some of this info
 
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22 November 1920

Captain Patrick McCarthy, Newmarket Battalion, Cork No. 2 Brigade was killed when taking part in an ambush on the RIC at Upper Mill Lane, Millstreet, Co. Cork.

John McCann, a participant in the Ashbourne Ambush in 1916, was taken from his home in Dublin by a group of men at 2 am. He was found shot dead near his home in the morning.

In the evening Michael O’Reilly was shot and killed in Capel Street, Dublin. His death was put down to an ND by a Private Hampton of the Wiltshire Regiment.

Edward Carmody, a Lieutenant in 6th Bn, Kerry No 1 Bde, was shot dead when fleeing from a police patrol in Ballylongford, Co. Kerry.

Three RIC Constables were killed in a road traffic accident at Dromoland County Clare. The three men were;

Constable Patrick Driscoll aged 31. From Ballydehob, Co. Cork he had joined the RIC in 1911.

Constable Michael Fleming aged 31. One of the Irish Black and Tans, Fleming was an ex-Sergeant Major in the Irish Guards and was originally from Co. Laois.

Constable Edward Roper aged 25. Roper was a Black and Tan from Hampshire and was the driver of the Crossley Tender that hit a gate leading into Dromoland Castle.

Patrick Moylette had a meeting with Prime Minister Lloyd George in London to discuss Arthur Griffith’s truce proposal. Lloyd George was presumably not in the best of form, given the news from Dublin. He was reported to have made the callous comment to Moylette that the British agents shot in Dublin on the previous day 'got what they deserved - beaten by counter-jumpers'. LG had of course boasted just two weeks before that British forces had murder by the throat in Ireland.

Art O’Donnell, O/C of the West Clare Brigade, was arrested in Ennis.

An RIC patrol was ambushed outside Ardara, Co. Donegal resulting in the wounding of four RIC men.

The commander of the Auxiliaries, Brigadier General Crozier went to Galway. Dublin was probably a place to be avoided that morning if at all possible. In Galway he fired the commander of D Company for being drunk. Lieutenant Colonel F. H. W. Guard took over as commander of D Company.
 
Has there ever been a definitive answer as to what the Auxies thought they were going to achieve at Croke Park?

It seems that the official version was that they went there on a search and arrest operation but were fired on by members of the crowd (wow, that excuse never gets old does it?) and returned fire. The other version is that some of the Auxies just lost their heads firing wildly and then the crowd stampeded.

None of which adds up, Hogan was shot on the field, he was targeted, as was another man crawling to his aid. Two kids were shot, one up a tree, another on a wall, although they could perhaps have been hit by wild firing. But then there are the reports of men killed outside in the street, one of whom may well have been bayoneted, although this isn't confirmed.

Presumably somebody in Dublin Castle must have made some sort of enquiry and a report must have been made, has that ever been released? Was it a genuine search operation that rapidly got out of control or was it what it seemed at the time merely an act of blind vengeance by a bunch of ill-disciplined men who had been allowed off the leash for far too long?

ETA: I should read the links first, I see the RTE piece posted by @bohs_man does provide some of this info
It seems to have been an actual search operation. Someone fired a shot and the justifiably nervous policemen gave it holly for a minute or so with tragic results. There was an enquiry and appears that the neither Auxiliaries nor the Army were to blame for the firing. Their CO on the day, a Major Mills, blamed Black and Tan/ RIC indiscipline.
 

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
What luck have you had with the pensions lot at the Irish Defence Ministry? I have received no reply from them despite it being an enquiry of a fairly general nature but backed up with specific details, one in other words that should only take a minute or two to answer.
pensions linky

have a shot at this site, or find my past or Ancestry.com good hunting.
 

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
Granddad C coy IRA, cant find him on the rolls ....... because c coy became so large and unweildly that some members were transferred to G coy ! Only G coy which was formed summer of 1920 was amalgamated with B coy !
then G coy was reformed during the truce !!! I fink my granddad got fed up with all the get on the bus , get orf de bus , get on the bus and buggers orf home . Ive searched 5,000 names is he there is he heck as like .
 
Granddad C coy IRA, cant find him on the rolls ....... because c coy became so large and unweildly that some members were transferred to G coy ! Only G coy which was formed summer of 1920 was amalgamated with B coy !
then G coy was reformed during the truce !!! I fink my granddad got fed up with all the get on the bus , get orf de bus , get on the bus and buggers orf home . Ive searched 5,000 names is he there is he heck as like .

Bn & Bde?

Was G Coy pro or anti treaty?
 
Granddad C coy IRA, cant find him on the rolls ....... because c coy became so large and unweildly that some members were transferred to G coy ! Only G coy which was formed summer of 1920 was amalgamated with B coy !
then G coy was reformed during the truce !!! I fink my granddad got fed up with all the get on the bus , get orf de bus , get on the bus and buggers orf home . Ive searched 5,000 names is he there is he heck as like .
have you tried the Irish army census 1922?
 
The Gods smiled on Tipperary today as the footballers beat Cork to win their first Munster Title since 1935. To mark the occasion the team wore replicas of the jerseys worn on Bloody Sunday instead of their usual blue and yellow strip. If they win the All Ireland we'll never hear the end of it.

Edited to add that the Ulster Final yesterday threw up surprise winners in the shape of Cavan. So by coincidence this year's All Ireland semi-finalists will be the same teams as that of the 1920 competition- Dublin v Cavan and Tipperary v Mayo. Due to the ongoing violence though, the 1920 final won't be played until June 1922.
 
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23 November 1920

Five men of 2nd Battalion, Cork No. 1 Brigade, IRA were standing at the corner of Princes Street and Patrick Street in Cork at about 9 pm. The men had been at a meeting in the Thomas Ashe Hall nearby. One story goes that a Black and Tan in civilian clothing threw a grenade at the group, killing or fatally injuring Patrick Trahey, Vice OC 2nd Battalion, Patrick O'Donoghue, QM 2nd Battalion, and Volunteer Edward Mehigan. However an IRA Volunteer named Michael O’Donoghue claimed in his witness statement that one of the group had a percussion bomb in his possession which he dropped on the footpath, causing the explosion. Volunteer Seán Murphy had his arm shattered and Volunteer Reynolds had his thigh fractured. Sixteen bystanders were injured to a greater or lesser extent.

Dennis O’Donnell was shot and killed by the RIC in Meadstown, near Kildorrery, Co. Cork. At the Military Court of Inquiry it emerged that the three RIC men involved - Constables A. E. Wood, A. Gray and S. W. Coe were drunk on duty at the time of the killing. Constable Wood admitted at the Inquiry to drinking in a pub after hours when on patrol. When asked if he knew it was illegal to drink in pubs after hours, he replied: “Yes. But there does not seem to be any law now”. It’s kind of disturbing that drinking after hours was considered the more serious offence.

O’Donnell was, aged 37, and wasn’t a member of the IRA. He was staying in a neighbour’s house, a man named Kennedy, who was an IRA man, and whose house was raided on the night by the three RIC men. Wood had been wounded in an ambush in the area back in August (see August 7 post) and presumably the three were after Kennedy but killed O’Donnell by mistake.

Paddy Flynn, Adjutant of the South Roscommon Brigade, was shot in his bed by a group of RIC men at Tarmon, Co. Roscommon. Later in the day, the Brigade O/C, Dan O’Rourke, had a lucky escape from the same group.

The Carrickmore Battalion of Tyrone No. 1 Brigade, led by Charlie Daly, attacked Ballygawley RIC barracks resulting in the wounding of three policemen and two civilian drivers.

Among the IRA men arrested on this day in Dublin in the aftermath of Bloody Sunday was Thomas Whelan, a 23-year-old from Clifden, Co. Galway who was living at 14 Barrow St, Ringsend. He will be executed in Mountjoy on 14th March 1921.

Thomas Downing was abducted by the IRA in Cork. Downing was an ex-serviceman and a civilian employee of the military. He was executed as a spy on 28 November.
 
Without wishing to go off-topic (since when did that ever stop you, Barton?) especially as @Gary Cooper rattles us through this busy week, but I was checking out Kevin Myers' book on Amazon and a bit surprised to see it weighing in at the thick end of 35 quid. However, what I did also discover was a third book in his autobiographical trilogy (the middle one being Watching the Door), the prequel if you like, covering his time as a boy growing up in England, might be worth a read too, and a bit cheaper.

1606122127592.png


Sorry for the interruption Gary, crack on.
 

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