#OTD in 1920 – Rineen Ambush: Six RIC men were killed by the IRA in an ambush in Rineen, Co Clare.

One of the most memorable encounters of the War of Independence took place at Dromin Hill, Rineen on this date. The purpose of this act was to get revenge for the murder of Martin Devitt, an Irish soldier who was shot dead in an ambush in February of that year in the locality. A secondary […]

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#OTD in 1920 – On hearing of British atrocities in Ireland, soldiers of the Connaught Rangers mutiny in protest; three are shot dead; a fourth, Private James Daly, is court-martialled and executed by firing squad.

The Connaught Rangers (The Devil’s Own) was an Irish line infantry regiment of the British Army originally raised in 1793 as the 88th Regiment of Foot (Connaught Rangers), which gained a reputation both for indiscipline and for its prowess as shock troops and streetfighters with the bayonet while serving under the Duke of Wellington during […]

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#OTD in 1921 – Carrowkennedy Ambush: Michael Kilroy and the IRA’s West Mayo Flying Column ambushed a convoy of RIC and Black and Tans.

The ambush was organised by Major General Michael Kilroy, later Commandant of the 4th Western Battalion of the IRA. He and his flying column of 33 volunteers took up position between Widow Sammon’s House and that of Widow McGreal in Carrowkennedy and awaited a Royal Irish Constabulary patrol. When a unit of Black and Tans […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 14 May:

637 – Death of Saint Mo Chutu mac Fínaill, also known as Carthach or Carthach the Younger (a name Latinised as Carthagus and Anglicised as Carthage), was abbot of Rahan (Irish Rathan), Co Offaly, and subsequently, founder and first abbot of Lismore (Irish Les Mór Mo Chutu), Co Waterford. The saint’s Life has come down […]

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#OTD in 1921 – A group of Black and Tans traveling from Listowel towards Athea arrested four young men (Paddy Dalton, Paddy Walsh, Jerry Lyons, Con Dee) in Gortaglanna.

Fuair siad bás ar son Saoirse na hÉireann! A troop of Black and Tans were travelling out from Listowel towards Athea when they arrested four young unarmed men in Gortaglanna. Prior to this the barracks in Listowel had been burnt out and the troops, heavy with drink and bent on revenge decided to execute the […]

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#OTD in 1920 – The Secretary of State for War, Winston Churchill, suggested the formation of a “Special Emergency Gendarmerie, which would become a branch of the Royal Irish Constabulary.”

In response to ongoing violence and rebellion in Ireland and a brutal campaign of attrition against members of the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC), the ADRIC was recruited in Great Britain from among ex-officers who had served in World War I, especially those who had served in the British Army (including the Royal Flying Corps). Most […]

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#OTD in 1923 – The Shadow Of A Gunman by Sean O’Casey premiered at the Abbey Theatre.

The Shadow of a Gunman, drama in two acts by Sean O’Casey, performed at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin in 1923 and published in 1925. Originally titled ‘On the Run,’ it was the fifth play O’Casey wrote but the first to be produced. The comic-tragic play is set in the tenement slums of Dublin in […]

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#OTD in 1920 – The first ‘Black and Tans’ (auxiliary policemen) officially arrived in Ireland.

Although they would be operational for less than two years, the ‘Black and Tans’ would become one of the most reviled names in Irish history. The English recruits to the RIC were mainly the unemployed veterans of World War I. Their principal motivation: employment for ten shillings a day. When the first recruits arrived in […]

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#OTD in 1921 – Scramogue Ambush: An IRA ambush is mounted on Strokestown-Longford road by south Co Roscommon IRA.

Roscommon was not one of the more violent areas of Ireland during the conflict. The local IRA argued to their GHQ that it was very difficult to conduct guerrilla warfare in the flat open countryside there. Prior to the action at Scramogue, the biggest previous incident had been in October 1920, when four RIC policemen […]

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