Irish War of Independence Engagements and Incidents

//Irish War of Independence Engagements and Incidents

British Troops, 1916 Rising

Irish war of Independence Engagements and Incidents

The shelled out remains of The GPO, where the rebels made their biggest and most determined stand, burned out by incendiarism at the last moment.  By James langton.

By Martin O’Reilly:

Castle Bernard, Bandon. West end view. Not long before before it was burned by General Sean Hales in 1921. — with Castle Bernard

By James langton:

British Troops Holles Street, 1916

By James Langton:

Crowds await the release of prisoners from Kilmainham during the truce

By James Langton:

Heres a rare one, its an armoured car outside Mountjoy Jail. Notice the chalk grafitti on the

By Joe Healy:

Sing Sing, the vault at Kilquane Cemetery, Knockraha, East Cork, where prisioners were detained by Cork No. 1 Brigade I.R.A. during the War of Independence.

By Risteard O’Murchu: Springfield Road Barracks, Belfast where the RIC murder gang under the command of County inspector Harrison operated from in the targeting and murdering of local Republicans —

By Risteard O’Murchu:

The early 1920s were terrifying times for Nationalists living in Belfast. During 1920 the IRA were at all-out war with the British in most of Ireland. In Belfast as in other parts of the north the IRA were not fully engaged in the war like in other parts of the country. This was because of the sectarian make up of the north eastern part of Ireland and because of this, the IRA leadership were reluctant to allow northern Republicans to engage in an all-out war for fear of the backlash that would be placed upon the Nationalist community from RIC and Loyalist gangs, however, later in 1920 things were to get worse. On Saturday night, 25th of September 1920 the IRA needed weapons and they also needed a propaganda coup. Orders were given to disarm the RIC in the Falls area. ‘B’ Company IRA went up to the Beehive Bar where there were two RIC men on guard duty standing around the side yard. As the Volunteers approached them and called to them to raise their arms, they did so. They raised their arms while holding their rifles and at the same time drew their small arms and fired and wounded one of the raiding party. The fire was returned. RIC Constable Leonard was killed and his colleague Constable Farrell was wounded. The Volunteers escaped having received two rifles. Immediately after the attack at the Beehive Bar the RIC set in motion a reprisal. At midnight on the 25/26 of September 1920 a party of RIC under Chief Inspector Harrison left Springfield Road Barracks, separated into three bands and proceeded to shooting up the Falls and Kashmir districts. The RIC Murder gang visited six Republican’s houses that night. They were to find three of their victims at home. Their first victim was Edward ‘Ned’ Trodden, a hairdresser who owned his shop at 58 Falls Road. He was a founder member of the Peter O’Neill Crowley GAC, which had formed part of the early Fianna. He joined the IRB in his early life and remained a member of the Irish Volunteers/IRA. Ned was in bed when the party under Harrison entered, was pulled out of bed and dragged by the hair downstairs and shot him in the yard. Their next victim was Sean Gaynor from 236 Springfield Road, who lived with his parents and was the brother of Liam Gaynor, a very active republican. On the night that Sean was killed, it is possible that the murder gang were looking for his brother, who had gone that day to Dublin on IRA business. Sean was also an active republican, having joined ‘B’ Company, 1st Battalion, Belfast Brigade in 1918 and remaining a member up to the time of his death. A second party of RIC under Head Constable Giff forced an entrance into Gaynor’s house and shot him in the bedroom. Giff before leaving the room drove a bayonet through Sean Gaynor’s body, fired shots through the rooms in the house and threatened Gaynor’s mother with the butt of is rifle for refusing to disclose the whereabouts of her elder son Liam.

Thousands of people were present at Sean Gaynor’s funeral and the Belfast Brigade marched behind the funeral. Armoured cars accompanied the funeral and the British Officer in charge of the leading car threateningly turned his machine gun on Sean’s father and two brothers and said he would fire if the tricolour was not removed from the coffin. Liam Gaynor answered that it would not be removed and so it remained on the coffin. Their last victim that night was Sean McFadden who lived at 54 Springfield Road. Less is known of his republican connections, both he and his brother were associated with the IRAs intelligence Branch. The RIC party under Harrison enter the house of Sean McFadden who met the party in the passage and was shot there in three times. The members of the gang were:- Harrison who shot Ned Trodden and Sean McFadden: Giff who shot Sean Gaynor, Sergeant C. Clarke (killed in April 1922); Sergeant Glover (killed in July 1921); Sgt Hicks of college square Barracks and Constables Golding, Caldwell, Sterrit, Gordan, Cooke and Peckenham. This gang were given over to Nixon and became the reprisal outfit. The greater Ballymurphy area wasn’t to escape the RIC murder gangs of this period. On June 11th 1921 The RIC Murder gang abducted three Nationalists from their homes in different parts of North Belfast and brought to isolated places and murdered. Two of the victims, Malachy Halfpenny and Alex McBride were killed and their bodies left in different parts of North Belfast. The third victim was Willie Kerr who was a Barber and lived at 47 Old lodge Road with his family. At about 1:30 in the morning Nixon’s gang banged on the door which was opened by William’s sister, they pushed past her and ran up the stairs to William’s bedroom and dragged him out to the street to an awaiting lorry, William’s sister tried to follow them outside but was told by one of the abductors to get back in, she had witnessed the intruders, It was believed that Christy Clarke was one of the intruders. William Kerr was taken to Dan O’Neill’s Loney and shot dead, Dan O’Neill’s Loney was a lane way that ran from the Springfield Road (facing the Orange Hall) to the Whiterock Road(where Britton’s Parade is). He was a member of the A.O.H. and had been shot about 30 times.

By Padraig ORuairc :

IRA Volunteer Tom Mc Grath, East Clare Brigade IRA. Participant in the Cratloe & Glenwood Ambushes Jan 1921

By Terry fagan:

The famous English-born Irish revolutionary Maud Gonne MacBride (left in the photo) protesting on O’Connell Bridge. Year of photo unknown. Maud Gonne MacBride was an English-born Irish revolutionary, feminist and actress, she was won over to Irish nationalism by the plight of evicted people in the Land Wars. She was also active in Home Rule activities.

By Chris Keane:

Paddy Moran and Joseph Rochford are charged with the murder of Lieutenant Ames at 38 Upper Mount St on Bloody Sunday. Rochford is acquitted but Moran is found guilty and sentenced to be hung. A large number of alibi witnesses had come forward for Moran but three British soldiers identified him as being in Upper Mount St. (According to O’Daly, Moran had led the group who killed two men in the Gresham Hotel on Bloody Sunday. It would therefore seem that the British had got one of the leaders of the Bloody Sunday attacks but pinned wrong attack on him.)

IRA ambush of train carrying British Troops at Upton Station (between Cork and Bantry) goes badly wrong due to bad intelligence. Six civilian passengers are killed and ten wounded. Three IRA men are also killed. More Detail

IRA ambush party at Mourne Abbey is surprised by British force – four IRA men are killed and eight captured. More detail

Frank Carty, O/C South Sligo Brigade, IRA escapes from jail in Derry. The rescue party was led by Charles McGuinness and Carty was taken from the city in a boat belonging to a Norwegian fisherman called Oscar Nolde (who had been smuggling arms into Ireland for the IRA).

In a speech, Lloyd George says that “The organisation

[of the IRA] which was so perfect six months ago, is now shattered.” The Irish Bulletin points out that six months ago, Llyod George was calling the IRA a ‘Murder Gang’.

By James Langton:

Ticket to the game, Bloody Sunday

By Martin O’Reilly:

Reginald Dunne who assassinated Field Marshall Sir Henry Wilson on Rory O’Connors orders who at that time was in charge of British operations Dunne and his accomplice Joseph O’Sullivan were hanged on the 10 August 1922 in Wandsworth prison London. They were buried in the grounds of the prison In 1976 their remains were brought home and interred in Deansgrange cemetry Co Dublin

By MikeVearnals:

Northern Division IRA

Saturday 11 February 1922 a gun battle at Clones Railway Station, County Monaghan, resulted in the deaths of four Ulster Special Constables and the local IRA commandant. A group of I.R.A. Volunteers attempted to ambush a party of Special Constabulary policemen, the I.R.A. entered the carriage and ordered the Specials to put their hand up, a shot rang out and I.R.A. Commandant Matthew Fitzpatrick fell dead. In the ensuing gun battle 4 of the Specials were killed.

By James Langton:

This is a photograph of the entry on the showing your relative John Edwards. I looked up the witness statements to see if I could find him, but he aint there. However, if he had an IRA pension, he would have had to fill out forms stating his activities etc and have his answers signed by his commanding officers of the time or (referee’s as they were often known as in this case). These can be got if you ring up the Department of Defence in Renmore Co. Galway. You will be a long time waiting on these but if its any comfort, the military archives are putting them all online soon. If you know what company he was a member of within the 4th, you could seek out his comrades in that company and see if they left witness statements which might mention him in missions they may have been on together. The Roll of Honour hung in Saint Endas for years, and now hangs proudly in Kilmainham Jail. Although in a form of alphabethical order, the names were entered at the time of each members death, the last being Paddy Rigney.

IRA 4th Battalion’ Roll of Honour

By James Langton:

ICA 1916 Roll Of Honour

By James Langton:

The shooting of four British soldiers on the eve of the Truce. Ellis Quarry near Cork City on the morning after their executions

‎1916 Rising Surrender Document Pearse


Thomas Ashe Funeral Glasnevin

British Troops disembarking on the South Quay at Butt Bridge during the Custom House Attack. These lads would have come under fire from members of the 4th Battalion, who where up on the bridge at the time

Some of the 1916 Volunteers captured and being held at Richmond Barracks

Funeral of Cathal Brugha

By Joe Healy:

British Troops Meelin, north Cork, 1921.

By James Langton

Telephone silence cabinet, center piece inside the GPO prior to the Rising

The main sorting room of the GPO after the battle

Drumboe Martyrs,On the morning of 14 March 1923, some six weeks before the end of the Civil War, four IRA Volunteers, Charlie Daly (26), Sean Larkin (26), Dan Enright (23) and Tim O’Sullivan (23), were marched from their cell at Drumboe Castle to an improvised firing range about 300 yards up a gently sloping field in the woods at Drumboe. It was at this spot that the four men were executed by a Free State firing squad and their bodies were thrown into a ready-made grave. The devotion of these men to their republican principles was never more evident than on that cold March morning in 1923, when the executors’ volley rang out in the woods of Drumboe.

By Martin O’Reilly:

The Burning of Cork by British Forces

By Sol Mendoza:

Republican flag over GPO, 1916.


Rebuilding the GPO

James Langton:

Abbey Street Corner, Hibernian Bank, shelled, 1916

British Armoured car across a street in Dublin

Liberty Hall

an eviction scene

By Johnny Reilly:

RIC Barracks Being Taken Over By Free State Troops

By Joe Healy:

The first armed attack on the Royal Irish Constabulary to occur in Ireland since the 1916 rising took place on Sunday, July 8, 1918 at Beal a Ghleanna (The Mouth of the Glen), on a mountain road linking Ballingeary and Ballyvourney in West Cork.

GHQ Parkgate handover 1922

By Terry Fagan:

Royal College of Surgeons and the Easter Rising 1916 The grey-stoned building of the Royal College of Surgeons on St Stephen’s Green was an important part of Easter Week 1916. From Tuesday the 25th of April to Sunday the 30th it housed the garrison made up of members of the Irish Citizen Army led by its Chief of Staff Commandant Michael Mallin and his second in command Countess Constance Markievicz. The photo shows the Collage hall used by the Irish Citizen Army immediately after the Rising.

By JamesLangton:

Dubliners on the streets after the Rising

By James langton:

Irish Rebels being marched off after revolt

By James Langton:

Anti Conscription rally in Ballaghadreen

By James Langton:

Outside Mountjoy WOI, before the executions

By James Langton:

The YMCA HQ after the Rebellion

Las Fallon: The old YMCA was on O`Connell Street. It                                                      was finally burned out during the fighting at the block during                                                                                                        the Civil War.

By Terry Fagan:

The College of Surgeons on St Stephen’s Green played an important part of Easter Week 1916. From Tuesday the 25th of April to Sunday the 30TH it housed the garrison made up of members of the Irish Citizen Army led by its Chief of Staff Commandant Michael Mallin and his second in command Countess Constance Markievicz. The photo shows homemade bombs and ammunition on a table left behind after the surrender. Note the warning in the table “Live Bombs” In cert photos are of Michael Mallin and the Countess Markievicz. Michael Mallin was executed by a British firing squad on 8 May 1916.

By Mike Vearnals:

Rosscarbery Barracks Cork.Rosscarbery Barracks. This photograph was taken only 6 hours after the IRA attack, and shows Capt J.A.M. Faraday, 2nd in Command of ‘O’ Company, ADRIC; standing in the smouldering ruins.

By James langton:

Another rare one: The IRA stormed the ploice barracks in Drumbane, Co. Tipperary, in which a five hour battle followed. The Volunteers carried Dynamite and bombs. This photo shows Constable McComiskey who was captured during the raid.

By James langton:

“Mutineer”,Here is a very rare one folks. Its the famous “Mutineer”, in the hands of Anti Treaty Forces who captured it during the Civil War. They are pictured with it here in the Four Courts. Interesting enough, when it was re captured back by the Pro Treaty men, it was renamed the “exMutineer”.

By James langton:

A version of this photo was posted earlier by another poster. Here is a clearer photo. The info that I have on differs in so far as, its in Clougher, but yes its the B Specials under attack.

By James Langton:

Wounded men in a temp hospital, Dublin Castle. There is a name somewhere on the priest and the guy he is chatting to, but I cant seem to put my hand on it.

By James Langton:

William Kells (right), brother of Detective Harry Kells who was shot dead in Camden St during the WOI

By James Langton:

Tunnelled walls in Belfast

By James Langton:

Crowds praying outside Mountjoy for Kevin Barry

By James Langton:

This was taken in Richmond Barracks after the Rising. Although the prisoner on the left is using his hat to hide his face, the gentleman to the right is staring at the camera. It looks like Major John McBride to me… any thoughts people ?

By Terry Fagan:

1920-21. I believe the story behind the headlines in the photo was to do with the shooting by members of Michael Collins squad of a high-ranking official of the G. N. R. (The Great Northern Railway) on the Southside of Dublin. He sacked train drivers for their refusal to carry arms, ammunition and British troops on their trains during the war of Independents.

By JL;

Custom House attack

A rare one of the Volunteers captured after the Custom House attack

By James Langton:

GPO aftermath

By Terry Fagan:

1920. The burning of Balbriggan Town in Ireland by British Crown Forces. Inset on main photo is a memorial in Balbriggan to the two men murdered by British Crown Forces. On September 20th 1920 in a public house in Balbriggan two Black and Tans were shot, one died. Who fired the shots is unclear but one account said the shooting was the result of a quarrel. Black and Tans and Auxiliaries were based at the nearby Gormanston Camp decided to take revenge out on the local people on arrival in the town they proceeded to smash windows of shops and houses in the small town. They then burned down 25 houses, forcing families to flee. Some took refuge in the fields. Two local young men, Séamus Lawless and Seán Gibbons, were bayoneted to death on the street by the Tans.

By Terry Fagan:

1920, Ireland. British troops at the ready in what looks like it a P.R. photograph,

By James Langton:

Balbriggan then

Balbriggan today

Men out of work in Balbriggan due to the tans sacking the town.

By Terry Fagan:

1920, Balbriggan

By Terry Fagan:

1915-Funeral Of O ‘Donovan Rossa

By james langton:

British raid on the Sinn Fein offices in Harcourt Street

Captured Rebel guns 1916

By Terry Fagan:

In 1962 while playing in an old sawmill on Foley Street me and my pall Mick Foran found part of an old arms dump buried deep underground. We found a hidden trap door that led underground. It was full of bandoliers and all sorts’ bits and pieces connected to Irelands struggle for freedom. We were walking around the tenement houses with all this stuff hanging out of us. From what I recall the Police went in and cleared it out. Phil Shanahan’s Pub was on the Corner of Foley Street it was a meeting place IRA men on the run from the Brits. Michael Collins used the upstairs rooms a as a meeting place for his top men. McKee and Clancy had their last drink there before they were captured the night before Bloody Sunday in a safe house in Gloucester Street now renamed (Sean McDermott Street.)

IRA man Phil Shanahan’s pub on the corner of Foley Street and Corporation Street since renamed (James Joyce Street).

By James Langton:

Mountjoy 1920, waving into Rebels from outside

By | 2017-09-13T15:09:37+00:00 March 17th, 2012|Individual Accounts Irish Volunteers 1913-1923|2 Comments


  1. sean hyland March 28, 2014 at 11:30 pm

    hi im looking for information on me relatives .a woman they called.( bee ) hyland. she was in the ira and was in jail and got out in 1920 so the story go’s . she lived in balla co mayo. also hylands from manulla Castlebar that were in the ira in and around 1916 give or take a year. All the people that have the information on the lives of these people are dead, so I would like some help finding out anything you could tell me about them .or where I can find information

  2. […] Posted by InsideImDancing Can you provide a link to this please? Irish war of Independence Engagements and Incidents | Irish The early 1920s were terrifying times for Nationalists living in Belfast. During 1920 the IRA […]

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