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Irish War of Independence centenary

I gave you the funny for this brilliantly acerbic comment, that only a Cecil (no strangers to Irish affairs) could come out with.

This war the British waged against creameries and other co-operatives seems bizarrely counter-productive. I mean I can see why the man on the ground might lash out at the nearest thing he could and a creamery owned by local farmers would be an obvious target but from the point of view of the administration it must have seemed an absurd case of cutting off your nose to spite your face.

The creameries were an economic success, they provided employment and prosperity in regions that were badly short of them, burning them down merely throws more men on the street and extracts a triple cost in terms of now paying dole, or the the 1920s equivalent, to unemployed workers, losing tax revenue from the destroyed businesses and then having to pay compensation to the owners.

The Irish War of Independence must have been the only instance in history when a government waged deliberate, economic war against itself. The British really did lose the run of their own famed calm logic and rationality when it came to dealing with Ireland to an extent that they rarely did in their dealings with other nations.
Apparently the IRA had money in the creameries or they supported the IRA so I have read in a couple of books about the Auxiliaries, which iswhy they were a target for reprisals.
 
That said, the business was on its uppers at this stage and the owners probably appreciated the subsequent compensation.
Indeed they did

The success of the Knocklong Soviet would result in both further strikes against Cleeves' owned premises but also retaliation from the Cleeves. At first, the Cleeves attempted to lay off workers at Knocklong under the auspices that a national general strike by ITGWU against handling British munitions had resulted in "a lack of work". However, this ploy was defeated by the formation of a strike committee. The Cleeves quickly changed tack; On the 24th of August, they insured the creamery against the outbreak of a fire. Coincidentally on the 26th of August, a unit of Black and Tans arrived in Knocklong and burnt down the creamery.
 
29 September 1920

Sergeant Denis McGuire died after being accidentally shot during a house search in Ferbane, Co. Offaly on 21st

.To mark the end of the truce imposed by the Blessed Virgin, a four man RIC patrol was ambushed at Killoskehan, Co. Tipperary, four miles from Templemore. Two policemen died and Constable Ferris was wounded. The fatal casualties were;

Constable Terence Flood, from Drumsna, Co. Leitrim. He was 35 years old.

Constable Edward Noonan, age 26 and from London.

Constable John Downey and Constable John Keeffe were in John Ryan's pub in O'Brien's Bridge, Co Clare having a drink when they were shot and killed by Michael Brennan, O/C East Clare Brigade. Brennan was wounded in the exchange of fire.

Constable John Downey, age 35, from Corofin Co. Clare.

Constable John Keeffe, age 30, from Goleen, Co. Cork.

In riots following the shootings of the three Sinn Féiners on the 26th, four Catholics were shot dead by the Army in the Falls Road area of Belfast. The four men were Robert Gordon (18 ) Thomas Barkley (32), James Shields (19) and William Teer (30). The coroner’s inquest found that the army had been justified in firing on the crowd.
 
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30 September 1920

In Sligo, the IRA ambushed a Crossley tender carrying nine RIC men at Chaffpool between Bunnadden and Tubbercurry. District Inspector James Brady was killed and Sgt O'Hara seriously injured. Brady was aged 21 and from Kingstown, Co. Dublin.

Brady’s death prompted reprisals under DI Russell, including the burning of two creameries at Rathscanlon and Achonry, and the destruction of fourteen shops and a number of houses, in Tubbercurry. The County Inspector said that “The reason these particular houses were attacked appears to have been because either the owner or the shop boys employed by him were active Sinn Feiners”. Strangely Dublin Castle issued a statement on October 6th admitting that policemen had in engaged in reprisals which “continued till early morning, despite the efforts of the officers”. Obviously nobody got the memo from Hamar Greenwood that reprisals were not taking place

Trim RIC barracks was attacked and captured by me of the Meath Brigade. Twenty rifles, twenty shotguns, six revolvers, a box of grenades and ammunition were taken. A large number of houses and shops in Trim were subsequently burned.

A tramp known as ‘Little Tommy’ was captured by the IRA and killed at Knockmore, Co. Carlow. Tommy was believed to be a British spy.

During September the IRA West Waterford Brigade ASU formed with George Lennon as O/C, George Kiely as vice O/C and Andrew Kirwan as Transport Officer. A levy was imposed throughout the county to support the ASU, buy arms and support prisoner families.
 
30 September 1920

In Sligo, the IRA ambushed a Crossley tender carrying nine RIC men at Chaffpool between Bunnadden and Tubbercurry. District Inspector James Brady was killed and Sgt O'Hara seriously injured. Brady was aged 21 and from Kingstown, Co. Dublin.

Brady’s death prompted reprisals under DI Russell, including the burning of two creameries at Rathscanlon and Achonry, and the destruction of fourteen shops and a number of houses, in Tubbercurry. The County Inspector said that “The reason these particular houses were attacked appears to have been because either the owner or the shop boys employed by him were active Sinn Feiners”. Strangely Dublin Castle issued a statement on October 6th admitting that policemen had in engaged in reprisals which “continued till early morning, despite the efforts of the officers”. Obviously nobody got the memo from Hamar Greenwood that reprisals were not taking place

Trim RIC barracks was attacked and captured by me of the Meath Brigade. Twenty rifles, twenty shotguns, six revolvers, a box of grenades and ammunition were taken. A large number of houses and shops in Trim were subsequently burned.

A tramp known as ‘Little Tommy’ was captured by the IRA and killed at Knockmore, Co. Carlow. Tommy was believed to be a British spy.

During September the IRA West Waterford Brigade ASU formed with George Lennon as O/C, George Kiely as vice O/C and Andrew Kirwan as Transport Officer. A levy was imposed throughout the county to support the ASU, buy arms and support prisoner families.
DI at 21. Was that unusual I wonder?
 
DI at 21. Was that unusual I wonder?
No, the RIC had an Officer/OR set up similar to the forces

Officer grades were Cadets, not to be confused with Temporary Cadets who were in the Auxillary Division. For a tiny place Ireland 1919 - 1922 had a very convaluted policing structure. Some of the Barracks (which were in most cases simply houses) could have housed Irish born pre war constables, non Irish recently recruited constables, a defence Sergeant, perhaps a driver or two from the drivers division, some Temporary Cadets, and some military, if they were really lucky they may have visitors from the Dublin Metropolitan Police and the Ulster Special Constabulary.
 
Indeed they did

The success of the Knocklong Soviet would result in both further strikes against Cleeves' owned premises but also retaliation from the Cleeves.


That ties in with previous posts, about how the Irish independence movement viewed, and was viewed by, the revolutionaries in the fledgling USSR. The first Irish Soviet had been formed in the Monaghan Lunatic Asylum; no change there.

The Soviets tapped the free state up for a loan with some of the russian crown jewels as security which were promptly put in a cupboard and forgotten about.

It would be interesting to see if the fledging Irish state was seen as a threat or benign by the soviets...

There had been a significant, though minority, socialist involvement in Irish politics; the 1913 Dublin Lockout, the Irish Citizen Army (founded to defend strikers from the DMP), James Connolly, etc..

The Russian revolutionaries were seen as having a similar agenda. The Tsar's government had been widely regarded as a tyranny that was a major obstacle to the USA's entry into WW1 (April 1917) until the Tsar had been deposed (March 1917).

The Russian revolution was regarded as progress but had not yet progressed to the madness of Stalinism, the Gulags, the NKVD/KGB, the Holodomor, etc., that we now associate it with. Also significant in the Irish context, the USSR hadn't started their anti-religious campaigns and the destruction of religious sites and images.
 
The Temporary Cadets of the Auxiliary Division were deployed in their own seperate company's or are these other Temporary Cadets?
Why the fascination with the auxies, are you keen to learn everything there is about them or are you trying to sift the wheat from the barley..
 
DI at 21. Was that unusual I wonder?
I thought so myself. Previous casualties of that rank have been middle-aged men with years of service.

Edited to add that at the end of this month another DI will be killed aged 23 and with 4 months service. Significantly he was a former Captain with the MC. Some Auxiliaries and presumably B&Ts joined as such and then applied for permanent positions in the RIC. Possibly Brady was one of those.
 
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1 October 1920

John Connolly was shot dead in Castle Bernard Park, Bandon, Co. Cork. Castle Bernard Park was the desmene of Lord Bandon near the town. Connolly had been arrested by the military a week earlier and that was the last he was seen by his family. Enquiries to the Essex Regiment at first elicited a denial that he had been arrested and then that he had been released. Connolly’s body was found in a shallow grave on October 16th, partly decomposed and with a head injury believed to have been a bullet wound.

Connolly was a Lieutenant in the local IRA Company, aged 25 and from Bandon. Someone with a long memory has put a memorial notice for him on RIP.ie

https://theirishrevolution.ie/1920-76/#.X3V2EGhKiM8

Family Notice Of John Connolly, Bandon, Cork, Ireland
 
DI at 21. Was that unusual I wonder?
Significant too that judging by his name (not a perfect science as can be ascertained by the names of the four Catholics killed in Belfast) Brady was a Catholic in an institution where the officer class was predominantly Protestant or English and it would have taken years of service in the ranks for a Catholic to attain a senior position. I wonder were they rushing through the recruitment of Catholics of officer rank at this stage.
 
The Temporary Cadets of the Auxiliary Division were deployed in their own seperate company's or are these other Temporary Cadets?
Yes, but they deployed to RIC barracks and operated with the police and army, likewise they did not often operate at company strength rather as small detachments or patrols in their company AOR.
 
Not necessarily so, there were catholics in the 'ruling class'.

In the RUC, a generation (and a world war) later but John Gorman was DI of Antrim to 1955, while the father of Mark Durkan (of the SDLP) was DI of Armagh. Gorman could probably be fairly described as "ruling class" but I doubt Durkan would recognise it. No idea of Durkans career trajectory but Gorman joined having demobbed after WW2.
 
Not necessarily so, there were catholics in the 'ruling class'.
Of course, and this is where my stupidly simplistic analysis of names comes in, they would have names like Fitzpatrick, De Burgh or More-O'Ferrall and would have their sights set on somewhat loftier goals than a district inspector of the RIC in County Sligo.

I can't help thinking our Jim Brady came from humbler stock, although I haven't the slightest shred of evidence to back up my assertion.
 
In the RUC, a generation (and a world war) later but John Gorman was DI of Antrim to 1955, while the father of Mark Durkan (of the SDLP) was DI of Armagh. Gorman could probably be fairly described as "ruling class" but I doubt Durkan would recognise it. No idea of Durkans career trajectory but Gorman joined having demobbed after WW2.
And don't forget big Joe McLaughlin from Derry, former Irish Guardsman, Palestinian policeman and latterly sergeant in the RUC.

Not especially well known for those roles mind you, he's better known to us as Josef Locke, at one time Britain's highest paid entertainer and subsequent tax fugitive.
 
Of course, and this is where my stupidly simplistic analysis of names comes in, they would have names like Fitzpatrick, De Burgh or More-O'Ferrall and would have their sights set on somewhat loftier goals than a district inspector of the RIC in County Sligo.

I can't help thinking our Jim Brady came from humbler stock, although I haven't the slightest shred of evidence to back up my assertion.

"An ex Irish Guards officer, Son of Captain Louis Brady, the Harbour Master for Dublin and a nephew of PJ Brady MP for St Stephens Green. Dublin"

The 1901 Census has him living with his parents at 3 Charlemount Terrace, Kingstown, Dublin and a Roman Catholic. At that time his father was a Captain, Mercantile Marine.

So, a loyal Irish man doing his duty for his country.
 
2 October 1920

IRA Volunteer John O’Hanlon from Lackagh, Co. Galway was arrested by the Auxiliaries. He was taken to a nearby field and shot while trying to escape.

South Roscommon Brigade attacked Frenchpark RIC barracks. The garrison held out and there were no casualties on either side. The following night, the RIC burned two shops in the nearby village of Ballinagare and carried out the mock execution of a man called Patrick Flynn.
 
2 October 1920

IRA Volunteer John O’Hanlon from Lackagh, Co. Galway was arrested by the Auxiliaries. He was taken to a nearby field and shot while trying to escape.

South Roscommon Brigade attacked Frenchpark RIC barracks. The garrison held out and there were no casualties on either side. The following night, the RIC burned two shops in the nearby village of Ballinagare and carried out the mock execution of a man called Patrick Flynn.


Playing devils advocate is it possible he did actually break loose of his escort/ overpower or subdue him/ them
Resulting in his death

I know it’s easy to assume he was given a count to ten then murdered in cold
Blood
Civil wars always bring out the nastier sides armies or in this case armed police
 
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