#OTD in 1936 – In the wake of the abdication of Edward VIII, the Dáil passes legislation removing the King from the Irish Constitution and abolishing the position of Governor General.

In 1936, a constitutional crisis in the British Empire arose when King Edward VIII proposed to marry Wallis Simpson, an American socialite who was divorced from her first husband and was pursuing a divorce of her second. Police detectives following Simpson reported back that, while involved with Edward, she was also involved with a married […]

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#OTD in 1922 – Robert Erskine was executed by a Free State firing squad at 7am in Dublin.

Nationalist, Robert Erskine Childers, author of Riddle of the Sands, arms smuggler, father of the fourth president of Ireland Erskine Childers was executed by Free State government for carrying an unlawful weapon at 7am in Dublin (as well as eight other IRA members). Childers supported the Anti-Treaty forces in the vicious Irish civil war which […]

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#OTD in 1922 – Four Anti-Treaty IRA men from Dublin, who were captured with weapons in Co Wicklow, are shot by firing squad.

In the first use of the powers enacted under the Public Safety Act, five Anti-Treaty IRA fighters who had been captured with arms in Co Wicklow were shot by firing squad in Dublin. On 19 November, three more Anti-Treaty IRA men were executed, also in Dublin. On 24 November, Robert Erskine Childers, an acclaimed author […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 17 November:

1814 – Joseph Finegan, a Confederate general in the American Civil War, is born in Clones, Co Monaghan. 1852 – Sligo-born Brigadier Michael Corcoran’s Irish Legion is mustered into the Federal service; it is involved in the defense of Washington D.C. 1869 – For nearly 150 years, the Suez Canal has played a vital role […]

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#OTD in 1922 – Ernie O’Malley, Anti-Treaty IRA commander in Dublin, is captured following a shoot out with Free State soldiers on Ailesbury road in Donnybrook.

‘On the base of the Pillar was a white poster. Gathered around were groups of men and women. Some looked at it with serious faces, others laughed and sniggered. I began to read it with a smile, but my smile ceased as I read, ‘Poblacht na h-Eireann, the Provisional government of the Irish Republic – […]

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#OTD in 1922 – Dáil Éireann approves the Constitution of the Irish Free State.

The Irish Free State constitution was adopted by an act of Dáil Éireann and given royal approval in December. It established many of the articles that had been set out in the Anglo-Irish Treaty of 1921. Northern Ireland (Unionists) opted out of the Irish Free State, and under the terms of the Anglo-Irish Treaty, this […]

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#OTD in 1931 – The IRA and other organisations are declared illegal in the Free State and the Catholic Church excommunicates members of all of them, including Saor Éire, which soon dissolves.

The Roman Catholic bishops issued a pastoral letter declaring that the Irish Republican Army and Saor Éire, “sinful and irreligious and no Catholic can lawfully be a member of them.” The excommunication order was extended to members of all organisations outlawed under the ‘Public Safety Act’. The military tribunal created under the ‘Public Safety Act’ […]

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#OTD in 1933 – The Irish Free State government purchases the copyright of Peadar Kearney’s, ’The Soldiers Song’ (Amhrán na bhFiann) which becomes the national anthem.

The lyrics of ‘The Soldiers Song’ were written by Peadar Ó Cearnaigh (Kearney), an uncle of Brendan Behan, who together with Patrick Heeney composed the music. Before the present-day National Anthem was adopted, “God Save Ireland” was the unofficial anthem used by the Fenians and the official anthem was “God Save the King” until the […]

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#OTD in 1923 – The Civic Guard is renamed the Garda Síochana.

An Garda Síochána (meaning “the Guardian of the Peace”), more commonly referred to as the Gardaí (“Guardians”), is the police force of Ireland. The service is headed by the Commissioner of An Garda Síochána who is appointed by the Irish government. Its headquarters are in Dublin’s Phoenix Park. The force was originally named the Civic […]

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