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Irish War of Independence centenary

Joyce’s body was discovered in 1998. He was identified by the contents of his pockets.

I recall seeing a video, maybe on YouTube, maybe it was posted here, of old IRA men describing how they dumped inconvenient bodies in a bog in Monaghan somewhere, the bodies are still there. It certainly had disturbing similarities to the McConville case and the other "disappeared" of the later Troubles.
 
15 October 1920

Peter Carroll was shot in his home in Dublin by men looking for his son, who was an IRA officer.
Peter O'Carroll, Mrs Brown's grandfather, previously mentioned on P42 of this thread.

That incident featured in the 'Who Do You Think You Are?' episode. That version, and the contemporary newspaper reports, stated that Peter O'Carroll had answered the door of his shop at night and had been shot once with some silenced weapon.

That is a bit bizarre, in that that Wikipedia article states that the murderers also "...shot and left-for-dead O'Carroll's father Gerard who was only nine years old", which was not mentioned in the BBC TV programme.

Googling that incident, I found a completely different version of the events, seemingly from Brendan O'Carroll.

"British Soldiers shot my Dad."

Someone has been telling porkies, I fear. The account of the aftermath of the murder, by Liam O'Carroll, states that his younger brother, Gerard, had been forcibly taken by the police to identify the body; there's no mention of Gerard getting shot by anyone.
 
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16 October 1920
flaherty.jpg

Two RIC men were fired on while on patrol near Bishop's Gate in Derry City. Constable John Flaherty died almost immediately. Flaherty was aged 46, married with two children and was a native of Athleague, Co. Roscommon. It was suspected at the time that the RIC men were attacked by Loyalists, angered at the arrest of one Cameron Finlay earlier in the evening. Finlay was found to be in possession of a revolver.

In disturbances following the eviction of a Catholic from his home in North Belfast, three Protestants were killed: John Gibson (52); William Mitchell (25) and Matthew McMaster (39).

Auxiliaries entered the Feeney home in Corofin, Co. Galway. The four sons of the family were taken outside stripped and flogged. Later in the night, a Corofin publican, John Raftery, was also attacked. Theses floggings were becoming a nightly occurrence. Somebody in the Galway Auxiliaries was into his S & M.
 
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I recall seeing a video, maybe on YouTube, maybe it was posted here, of old IRA men describing how they dumped inconvenient bodies in a bog in Monaghan somewhere, the bodies are still there. It certainly had disturbing similarities to the McConville case and the other "disappeared" of the later Troubles.
I remember that one community in Tipperary had the body of a man shot as a spy in 1921 disinterred and given a proper burial in the early 90s. The location of his grave appears to have been common knowledge.

 
17 October 1920

Sergeant Daniel Roche, who had travelled to Dublin from Tipperary to identify the body of Sean Tracey, was shot and killed by members of the Squad at the corner of Capel St and Ormond Quay. Two bystanders, 15 year old Eileen Allen and an elderly man named Daniel Reid were wounded in the incident.

On the 16th, Roche and a Constable Fitzmaurice were accompanied to the City Morgue by David Neligan, who you may recall was one of Collins's men in G Division. They identified Treacy's body and also viewed that of Matt Furlong who bore a passing resemblance to Dan Breen. Roche didn't know Furlong but knew it wasn't Breen on the slab. Neligan informed Liam Tobin that evening that he would be meeting Roche the following day and Collins ordered the killing of the RIC man.

Fitzmaurice escaped the ambush uninjured which was almost a disaster for Neligan, whom he had seen talking to one of the Squad just before the shooting. Neligan was questioned about this but successfully lied his way out of trouble.

MICHAEL FITZGERALD Irish nationalist.gif

Michael Fitzgerald (above), O/C 1st Battalion, Cork No. 2 Brigade died after 67 days on hunger strike in Cork Jail. Fitzgerald had taken part in the attack on troops in Fermoy in September 1919 that led to the first military fatality of the war and IIRC the capture of General Lucas. He was the first hunger striker to die during the War of Independence.

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Fitzgerald is buried in Kilcrumper Old Cemetery near Fermoy. Several other IRA men were buried in the same plot, including Liam Lynch in 1923 and it is now known as the Republican Plot, a common feature of Irish cemeteries.

James Lehane from Ballymakeera, Co Cork was shot and killed by Auxiliaries.

Kilcrumper photo from Irish War Memorials website.
Fitzgerald photo; Remembering our Irish Martyrs : Michael Fitzgerald, Terence MacSwiney and Patrick Joseph Murphy
 

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18 October 1920

Attack on Ruan RIC Barracks

The attack was carried out by the Mid-Clare Brigade under O/C Frank Barrett in the early hours of the morning. There were 32 IRA men in the attacking party with many others blocking roads in the vicinity. Among them were Joe Barrett, Sean Casey, Sean MacNamara, Mick Tuohy, Sean Moroney and Ignatius O'Neill.

The IRA men gained entrance to the barracks as a constable left to go for milk and left the back gate open. There were 13 RIC men in the barracks and they must have attempted some resistance as one man, Constable John Longhead, was killed and two others wounded -Constables Roddy and Farrelly.

Two other constables were reported missing after the attack. Constables William Carroll and a Constable Wilmott were taken prisoner. Wilmott was released after a couple of days while Carroll was not heard from again. It appears that Carroll had conspired with the IRA in the attack on the barracks and he had joined the IRA full time. He was subsequently wounded at the Monreal ambush on 18th December. After the war was over, Carroll who had been in the RIC for 16 years, claimed and was paid his RIC pension of £85 a year.

Among the arms captured by the IRA were 14 rifles and 14 revolvers. The captured RIC men were released after they gave an undertaking not to engage in reprisals.

Two brothers, Eamonn and Francis Dwyer, members of the 1st Battalion, 3rd Tipperary Brigade, were shot dead in their home by masked men at Ballydavid, near Bansha, Co Tipperary.
 
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19 October 1920

Jack Fitzgerald and Mick O'Neill, two IRA officers from Kilbrittain, Co Cork, were captured. Both men had participated in several attacks on the Coastguard and the RIC. I’m not sure of their fates as yet.
 
I remember that one community in Tipperary had the body of a man shot as a spy in 1921 disinterred and given a proper burial in the early 90s. The location of his grave appears to have been common knowledge.

According to his records he served less than two years, most of which he was absent, between 1899 and 1901 and was discharged as a 'harmless lunatic'. Even in 1916 when they were 'needing them, not feeding them' he served about 3 months in the Royal Garrison Artillery before being discharged again, probably for the same reason.

Would the British really have used such a person as a spy, and if they did, how long would it be before they realised he was simple minded? He would have probably confessed to being 'the Pope' if his IRA captors put it to him, let alone a British spy.
 
20 October 1920

Michael Walsh, a Sinn Féin County Councilor, was arrested by Auxiliaries in his grocery and public house, the Old Malt House on High Street in Galway City, . He was taken to Long Walk where he was shot in the head and his body thrown into the sea.

In retaliation for the attack on Frenchpark RIC station in Co. Roscommon on the 2nd October, the RIC sacked the village of Ballinagare shooting dead IRA Volunteer Pat Doyle.

Kevin Barry was tried by court martial in Marlborough Barracks, Dublin.
 
Shot while trying to escape?
Had they been killed I'm sure it would have been mentioned. A Michael O'Neill will be killed during the Civil War in Dunmanway. This may be one of them.

According to his records he served less than two years, most of which he was absent, between 1899 and 1901 and was discharged as a 'harmless lunatic'. Even in 1916 when they were 'needing them, not feeding them' he served about 3 months in the Royal Garrison Artillery before being discharged again, probably for the same reason.

Would the British really have used such a person as a spy, and if they did, how long would it be before they realised he was simple minded? He would have probably confessed to being 'the Pope' if his IRA captors put it to him, let alone a British spy.
Being shot as a spy did not of course mean one was actually a spy. Being a former British soldier and not a subsequent member of the IRA would have been enough to get a man killed. Kirby also had the additional strike against him of being an outsider ie from another village.
 
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According to his records he served less than two years, most of which he was absent, between 1899 and 1901 and was discharged as a 'harmless lunatic'. Even in 1916 when they were 'needing them, not feeding them' he served about 3 months in the Royal Garrison Artillery before being discharged again, probably for the same reason.

Would the British really have used such a person as a spy, and if they did, how long would it be before they realised he was simple minded? He would have probably confessed to being 'the Pope' if his IRA captors put it to him, let alone a British spy.
Being shot as a spy did not of course mean one was actually a spy. Being a former British soldier and not a subsequent member of the IRA would have been enough to get a man killed. Kirby also had the additional strike against him of being an outsider ie from another village.
 
Had they been killed I'm sure it would have been mentioned. A Michael O'Neill will be killed during the Civil War in Dunmanway. This may be one of them.


Being shot as a spy did not of course mean one was actually a spy. Being a former British soldier and not a subsequent member of the IRA would have been enough to get a man killed. Kirby also had the additional strike against him of being an outsider ie from another village.
I believe that among the people who were shot for being a spy, ex-soldiers, village idiots (to use a non-PC term) and tinkers (ditto) were high up the list.

Judging by some of the comments I have read I think most Arrsers would thoroughly approve of the the third and final category being shot.
 
21 October 1920

British military arrived at the house of Roger Furey near Oranmore, Co. Galway. They took his two sons outside for questioning during which one of them, Michael, was shot in the leg. They moved on to the house of Thomas Furey, Roger’s brother, where his three sons were questioned and beaten. Next they raided the home of Martin King, smashing the windows and beating up his two sons.

In Co. Clare, the army raided the house of Charles Lynch near Milton Malbay. Lynch was shot dead by a soldier named McPhearson.

Patrick Moylette, a London-based Irish businessman and a contact of Arthur Griffith, got in touch with Brigadier General Cockerill and told him to relay to Lloyd George that he could have peace whenever he wished. Moylette subsequently met a person from the Foreign Office and a letter from Griffith is passed to Lloyd George.

Cockerill, you’ll recall, had suggested in a letter to The Times, that a truce be caked in Ireland followed by negotiations.
 
22 October 1920

The Westmeath IRA bit off a bit more than they could chew when they ambushed three RIC lorries at Parkwood, Co. Offally. One lorry had driven through the ambush site without a signal being given by the lookouts. Within minutes another lorry arrived and was fired on. The driver was hit and the vehicle drove off the road. Almost immediately, two more lorries arrived and the ambushers were forced to leg it before suffering any casualties. The driver who was hit was Constable Harry Biggs who died immediately. Constable Biggs was from London, age 23 and had two months’ service with the RIC. The ambush was led by Commandant James Tormey from Athlone. He will be killed in February.

Reprisals by the RIC followed in the villages of Moate, Horseleap, Killbeggan and in Athlone. A number of civilians were wounded and one, Michael Burke was killed.

Three policemen were ambushed at Glandore, Co Cork. Constable Bertie Rippengale aged 25 and from Essex, died within hours. Constable Albert Rundle, aged 26 from London, was fatally wounded, dying on 4th November. The two men had three months service in the RIC.

Elsewhere in Cork, the 3rd Cork Bde ambushed two military lorries manned by personnel of the Essex Regiment near Ballinhassig. The plan was to detonate a mine under the first lorry but it drove through the ambush when the mine failed to explode. The second lorry was halted by rifle fire and a short firefight ensued in which three men were killed.

KIA
dixon.jpg
Lt William Dixon MC, 2nd Bn. Suffolk Regiment Attached 1st Battalion Essex Regiment. A native of Dover, Dixon was aged 39, a pre-war regular with 14 years service, who had served in France, Salonika and Russia.

William Alfred Dixon

bennet.jpg
M/32520 Sgt Thomas Bennett , Royal Army Service Corps. Aged 26 from Shorne, Kent. Bennett was also a pre-war regular with 7 years service, six of them in France from August 1914 to June 1920. He was fatally wounded and died the next day in Cork Military Hospital.

Sgt Thomas Arthur Bennett , M/32520 Royal Army Service Corps

5998619 Private Charles William Reid, 1st Bn. Essex Regiment. Reid was from London, aged 18 and had served a year in the army.

Private C W Reid 5998619 1st Bn. Essex Regiment

Ballinhassig Ambush

Dublin Castle issued an order under the Special Constabulary Ireland Acts of 1832 and 1914 that a Special Constabulary was to be created. Theoretically the force would be raised from loyalists all over Ireland but in practice it only happened in Ulster. Recruitment began in Belfast on 1st November. There were to be four elements A (full-time); B (part-time); C (reserve) and CI (ex-UVF men). The formation of the Special Constabulary was opposed by General Sir Nevil Macready and Sir John Anderson, joint Under Secretary in Dublin Castle.
 
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The Westmeath IRA bit off a bit more than they could chew when they ambushed three RIC lorries at Parkwood, Co. Offally. One lorry had driven through the ambush site without a signal being given by the lookouts. Within minutes another lorry arrived and was fired on. The driver was hit and the vehicle drove off the road. Almost immediately, two more lorries arrived and the ambushers were forced to leg it before suffering any casualties.
Do you think it likelt that these were Auxiliaries considering the numbers?
 
Do you think it likelt that these were Auxiliaries considering the numbers?
No, it seems this was a convoy distributing newly trained regular RIC Constables recruited in Great Britain to their duty stations at various RIC Barracks. Members of ADRIC were involved in the follow up though.

It does not help there was a Harry Biggs in ADRIC as a Temporary Cadet who transferred to the regular RIC as a permenant Cadet on 20 Nov, but he does not die until next year and was not involved in this ambush..
 
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No, it seems this was a convoy distributing newly trained regular RIC Constables recruited in Great Britain to their duty stations at various RIC Barracks. Members of ADRIC were involved in the follow up though.

It does not help there was a Harry Biggs in ADRIC as a Temporary Cadet who transferred to the regular RIC as a permenant Cadet on 20 Nov, but he does not die until next year and was not involved in this ambush..
That explains why the KIA were all Constables from the mainland with only a few months service. Thanks.
 

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