Chapter 2 has introduced civilian defiance and IRA coercion in the context of the local machinations of Dáil Éireann, specifically through local government and the collection of the poor rate. It has also shown the centrality of violence and intimidation (subtle or otherwise) to the upholding of the republican counter-state at a local level. This chapter will explore civilian non-cooperation, and its motivation, more broadly from three perspectives. It will begin by exploring two illustrative examples of Dáil Éireann edicts enforced by local IRA units: the Dáil courts and the Belfast boycott. The courts and the boycott are among the best documented examples of Dáil edicts and have already been subject to substantial scholarly work from a political and administrative point of view, allowing the focus here to remain on local manoeuvring and IRA participation. The focus will then move to another monetary collection enforced by the IRA: the arms fund levy. As an exclusively ‘army’, rather than ‘civil’, collection, the arms fund offers a useful comparison with that of the poor rate and will serve to emphasise the prevalence of the behaviour noted in Chapter 2. The final two sections will explore the influence of community politics and personal relationships on loyalism, examining the extent to which well-established community behaviour and personal interest influenced the guerrilla campaign, and vice versa. First, general conclusions will be offered before those conclusions are tested with a study of loyalists and the perception and creation of loyalty in one ‘southern’ Irish community (Arva, County Cavan) based on a detailed reading of compensation claims to the IGC and complementary material.
Dáil Éireann edicts
The court network established by the Dáil government as an alternative to the British legal system was one of the most widely reported pieces of republican civil work during the Irish Revolution.1 On 18 June 1919, Dáil Éireann passed a decree allowing for a scheme of ‘National Arbitration Courts’ in every county in Ireland. According to Dáil court judge Kevin O’Shiel, the purpose of arbitration courts was to replace IRA ‘courts martial’ that had been keeping law and order in parts of the country where the police had been withdrawn.2 Courts along the lines advocated years earlier by Arthur Griffith had sprung up in 1917 and the Dáil decree borrowed heavily from a system founded in West Clare.3 A year later, Minister for Home Affairs, Austin Stack, was authorised to establish a supreme court, district courts, and parish courts with criminal and civil jurisdiction, marking a move from the guise of voluntary arbitration to ‘mandatory and coercive jurisdiction’; the Dáil decree gave courts the power to compel the attendance of witnesses and enforce judgments. The outbreak of agrarian disturbances throughout 1919 and 1920 simultaneously encouraged the establishment of the Dáil Land Commission with land courts presided over by O’Shiel and Conor Maguire.4 The IRA served two functions in this process: first, ensuring attendance at republican sittings and non-attendance at British courts and, secondly, enforcing judgments and rulings.
The courts decreed in 1919 only resembled the voluntary arbitration tribunals envisaged by the Dáil superficially. In practice they were, as David Fitzpatrick has suggested, ‘more often the instruments of factional coercion than preservers of neighbourliness’. The rules of the courts in West Clare allowed for mandatory judgments, guards posted to keep the peace, and fines for breaches of licensing laws. In early 1920, it was reported that Volunteers cooperated with local Sinn Féin in administering justice, and in one case in Kilrush, refusal to bring a case to the Dáil court was met with shots fired, a notice posted on the chapel gates from the ‘Competent Military Authority’, and boycotting. By September 1920, the ‘polite fiction of “voluntary arbitration” was quietly forgotten’.5
Edward Egan was summoned to a republican court in Nenagh, County Tipperary, in June 1921, along with his neighbours: ‘we were all threatened by the I.R.A. and told that if we attended, we would have to put up with the consequences. I was the only one who attended Assizes as I considered it my duty to do so, as a loyal citizen of British Empire’.6 Adherence to the law of the Crown alone was only enough to keep stubborn and committed loyalists like Egan away from ‘illegal’ Dáil courts and their success often depended on the local balance of power. Where the IRA was comparatively weak, or the Crown forces energetic in suppression, local civilians were more likely to stay away. On one end of the spectrum was Leitrim, where the RIC reported in April 1921 that ‘no one dares hold S.F. Courts’, while on the other was Longford, where Marie Coleman has attributed some of the success of the courts there to a relative lack of harassment from Crown forces.7 The dominant actor could essentially dictate the behaviour of civilians. In Maynooth, County Kildare, a man ordered to leave the country by a republican court in November 1920 refused to do so and ‘having local backing’ defied ‘S.F. to touch him’.8
The success of local Dáil courts in turn generated a financial incentive to favour them over the British alternative. As business moved away from official assizes and petty sessions, solicitors, ‘even those who had no sympathy with Sinn Féin, found it necessary, if they were to retain their business, to practise in the Courts’.9 One solicitor who refused to do so reflected sadly that ‘even old loyalists who were shopkeepers went to Sinn Féin solicitors’.10 In that sense, the campaign of IRA intimidation was remarkably successful. In Waterford – ‘still freer from Sinn Fein influence than any other county in the [6th] Divisional Area’ – all jurors failed to appear at the assizes in July 1920 ‘owing to Sinn Fein intimidation’.11 The county inspector was unimpressed with jurors ‘frightened away by silly threatening letters written in a Garret in a back lane in Waterford’ but conceded that it was indicative of conditions at the time.12 Staying away was not a simple decision either and substantial fines were imposed for non-attendance.13 Leitrim Volunteer Charles Pinkman remembered kidnapping jurors with their own permission as ‘none of them were willing or anxious to attend the court’ and this saved them from being fined for non-attendance.14
Reports of British court sittings with little or no work to do are also testament to a significant amount of public support for the republican alternative.15 The RIC remained sceptical about the voluntary nature of participation but other British officials admitted that litigants went willingly, if only because they had no other means of redress.16 At a meeting in the House of Commons in July 1920, Winston Churchill offered several instances ‘when no redress could be obtained from the ordinary courts and no protection from the Government, where the loyalists had applied to S.F. Courts and been well treated’. Unionist politician Hamilton Cuffe, Lord Desart, asked whether those who used Dáil courts ‘for the protection of life or property or to obtain the necessaries of life’ would be considered offenders. ‘This question was being asked by many in Ireland who desired to act loyally, but can only in this way get protection’.17 Loyalists who participated in the republican system were often willing to offer effusive praise for its fair administration of justice.18 But David Fitzpatrick has also pointed out that litigants were most likely to attend the court session they felt would treat them most favourably.19 The comment of one observer succinctly summarised the disparate reasons among those who flocked to the new courts: ‘Clients arrived in the hope that the judgements given would be more lenient than in the established British Courts, clients came from patriotic motives, from motives of adventure, and not least because they dared not stay away. Intimidation was present here as elsewhere.’20
In June 1921, the Dáil organiser in Cavan reported that there were no courts held in Ballyconnell or Corlough and people ‘who used to seek redress of their grievances in these courts are turning to the enemy courts again’. Volunteers had been forced to stop cases going to quarter sessions and set up a ‘Volunteer court’.21 Six months later, a West Cavan solicitor wrote to the minister for home affairs on behalf of a client who had a decree for £3 awarded against him by the county court judge in 1919 and confirmed at the spring assizes in 1920. ‘In order to avoid a seizure by the Sheriff’, he claimed, ‘the Defendant paid amount of Decree but he is still of opinion that the Decree was a most unjust one having regard to the evidence given on the hearing’. Perhaps feeling he might get a more palatable outcome from republican justice, the client wished for his case to be heard in a Dáil court. For good measure, the solicitor added that the ‘Defendant at all times would be prepared to have the case heard by a Local Court but same were not functioning at the time and as the Plaintiff issued a Civil Bill for the British Court the Defendant had no alternative but defend same’.22 The registrar for the East Cavan courts reported similar requests the same month.23 Defendants could also take advantage of the absence of coercion to avoid paying decrees made against them. A Limerick shopkeeper, for example, complained in April 1922 that a decree for £131 12s. 7d. secured at the Alton district court twelve months earlier had yet to be paid.24 Part of the strategies adopted by canny civilians included finding ways to take advantage of disturbed conditions to serve their own financial interests.
Similar behaviour was reflected in the Belfast boycott, an ultimately unsuccessful and counter-productive programme instituted as a protest against sectarian disturbances and partition. Following a petition from Sean MacEntee, Sinn Féin leaders in Belfast, and other republicans, the Dáil cabinet reluctantly agreed to a limited boycott of Belfast banks and insurance companies in August 1920. The boycott was introduced in immediate response to the expulsion of Catholic workers from Belfast shipyards in July 1920 but had been developed in Galway as early as 1919. By September 1920, possibly without Dáil sanction, the ban became general and drew much initial support from local government bodies, trade unions, and Catholic clergy. An advisory committee was formed, inspectors appointed, and enforcement committees created around the country to ensure the boycott was obeyed. The aim was to punish Belfast, ‘the commercial capital of the country’, economically. Aside from provoking the reinstatement of expelled Catholic workers in Belfast, it was hoped the boycott would provide clear evidence to loyalists that the six counties could not prosper economically alone.25 Enforcing the boycott and punishing deviants was usually left to the local IRA and, in Peter Hart’s words, it ‘was enforced with threats, guns, and kerosene’.26
The overarching failures of the Belfast boycott and its ultimately counterproductive impetus have been well documented.27 But why did local traders and customers obey or ignore? Cavan ex-soldier and Orangeman Robert Browne insisted that his allegiance to the government prevented him from obeying the local boycott. He claimed that despite being ‘frequently approached by strange men who cautioned me not to buy or sell any more Belfast or British goods … or I “would be shot on sight”’, he and his mother continued to trade with Belfast and ‘generally to act as British subjects’.28 Browne, though, was not necessarily representative, and loyalty to the Crown was often less important than a desire to preserve a business and livelihood. The threat of violence encouraged many other loyalists to give up their association with Belfast. John Cox worked as a salesman in Donegal and Fermanagh for a Belfast bread company but was eventually driven from his home and forced to move to Belfast in July 1921. His workmen had been threatened with shooting and, as one of them put it, ‘I knew well what it would mean for me if I continued to work, so I immediately informed Mr. Cox and ceased working’.29 Joseph Knott told the IGC that his business was ruined as Belfast travellers were ejected from his Leitrim hotel and he was ‘threatened under severe penalty not to take them in again’.30 Cork native Thomas Stewart (a Protestant and Freemason) worked as a travelling salesman for a Belfast tobacco firm and claimed he was repeatedly held up and compelled by the IRA to resign his position in February 1921.31
At a local level, the imperatives to accede to the Belfast boycott were as often financial as political. Southern traders usually bought from Belfast firms as they were the cheapest or most convenient source available; boycott director Joseph MacDonagh acknowledged that wholesale prices were higher in Dublin than in Belfast. MacDonagh also remarked that Belfast firms were sending their best salesmen to ‘sell goods at any price’ just to keep their connections.32 Likewise, at a meeting about the boycott in Killeshandra, County Cavan, attended by a local Volunteer representative, concerns about shortages of goods were aired alongside fears from traders who transacted all their business with Belfast firms.33 A heated debate about the motives behind a ‘white list’ of acceptable traders published in Enniskillen, County Fermanagh, is evidence of the difficulty with which politics was disentangled from economics as Protestants were believed to have been deliberately targeted.34 The Unionist Impartial Reporter declared that it was really nothing to do with Belfast: ‘The whole boycott is a matter of trade jealousy, organised by a few shop assistants for the benefit of their masters, and some insurance agents’, ‘a religious boycott to capture business from the Protestant business houses’.35
As the punishment was financial – fines were inflicted rather than personal injuries and produce burned rather than homes or property – the decision to stock or buy ‘prohibited’ goods was primarily motivated by economic concerns. If their political convictions did not make the decision for them, traders had to be convinced that the potential loss of goods and customers outweighed the extra cost of sourcing from Dublin or elsewhere. The Monaghan IRA seems to have been particularly successful in this regard.36 ‘On the whole’, declared OC Eoin O’Duffy in a report to GHQ, ‘the people are now coming well into line as they see it does not pay to buy this stuff, no matter how cheap, and get it destroyed’.37 Where a boycott was threatened for non-payment of a fine, there was usually little resistance offered and fines were paid relatively freely. The price of a fine appeared insignificant when compared to the potential cost of a prolonged public boycott.
The results achieved within communities by publishing blacklists emphasises this point. A national blacklist of offending firms was published in March 1921, followed by a more comprehensive list in May. Local lists were also published at the request of boycott committees. The lists, declared a Labour Department report, ‘had the effect of bringing many of the offenders into line’.38 Individuals unlucky enough to find themselves listed could only undo the damage by issuing an apology and paying a fine to the local boycott committee. Those on a list compiled in Monaghan were required to sign a guarantee not to offend again, return all Belfast goods to their consignee, and pay whatever fine had been imposed.39 Eoin O’Duffy reported in April 1921 that ‘several merchants including unionists have fallen in with our wishes and paid pretty stiff fines to have their names removed from the black lists’.40 The IRA worked in tandem with local boycott committees in producing and distributing these lists. In March 1921, it was reported in Cavan that a circular headed ‘I.R.A.’ was distributed giving the names of 23 Ballybay businesses and ‘urging the public not to enter these establishments’.41 The circulation of blacklists in the county prompted some listed traders to deny the offence but also encouraged others to publish apologies in the Anglo–Celt to secure a reprieve.42
The greatest failing of the Belfast boycott at a local level was the inconsistency of its application. D.S. Johnson has described how the beginning of the boycott was marked with confusion and insufficient organisation. The arrest of its first organiser, Joe Henderson, in October 1920 did not help. Shortly before he replaced Henderson as director, Joseph MacDonagh claimed that the boycott was ‘unsatisfactory on the whole’ and that it ‘should be enforced ruthlessly or not at all’.43 Despite some improvement under MacDonagh, the boycott was weak in most counties and Terence Dooley has described Monaghan as the ‘only area where the boycott was effectively enforced’.44 When carried out determinedly it could be near absolute in a town: the North Roscommon Brigade reported that a boycott was enforced on two traders dealing with Belfast and ‘settled satisfactorily’ while all but nine or ten had removed their accounts from the Northern Bank.45 On the other hand, in April 1921 the police in Queen’s County noted a failed boycott on a Protestant farmer for dealing in Belfast goods ‘as the majority of the customers paid no attention to the warning notices and the boycott was withdrawn’.46 The Dáil labour department highlighted some ‘weak points’ in the boycott system, including ‘leakage of Belfast goods’ into north-west Connaught where two successive organisers had been arrested.47 When republican demands had financial implications, as often they did, behaviour was notably affected. A shortage of copper coins in Navan was remedied with a supply from Belfast and meant that the boycott was simply ‘forgotten in the rush for the coin’.48
On 5 December 1920, Edmund Griffin of Castleisland, County Kerry, was asked to pay a £4 levy imposed by the local IRA company. Griffin refused to pay and over the coming months repeated overtures were similarly rebuffed. Edmund Griffin did not seem a likely candidate to provide opposition to Castleisland’s republicans. His son, who got into an argument with some Volunteers and was threatened with a revolver, had been a Volunteer himself ‘since “they started” and never refused any duty imposed on him as such’; after the row he had been ‘afraid he’d be shot and labelled a “spy” to the eternal disgrace of his family’. Some months earlier when an outhouse belonging to the father of the Volunteer who had made the original levy demand was burned down by Crown forces, Edmund Griffin had brought him some hay to keep him going. Griffin had refused to pay £4, not because he was opposed to the republican cause, nor because he opposed any use that might be made of the money, but because he felt it was unfair: he ‘offered £2.10 the amount assessed on others of larger valuation than his. His valuation is £28.5. Others assessed at £2.10 had a valuation of £40. His offer of £2.10 was refused’.49 Griffin’s case is an indicative example of the complexities surrounding the collection of money to fund the IRA’s guerrilla war.
Collections for arms and dependants’ funds were raised and collected at a parish level, usually in the form of a vaguely defined ‘levy’. The levy was often based on how much a local company felt they might expect to get. In some cases, amounts were calculated based on the valuation of an owner’s property, but demands varied. In parts of Cork, for example, 3d. in the pound was required but in Sligo it was as high as 6d. in the pound.50 In some cases a flat sum was demanded while in others the levy was struck simply ‘according to what the local company believed a man could pay’.51
In November 1920, a demand notice was handed to residents in the Cork No. 3 Brigade area:
A collection is being made in this area, by authority of the General Head Quarters of our Army, to enable me to carry on the work of arming the Volunteers in this Brigade, and so sustaining and increasing the fight waged against the enemy here. You are asked to subscribe a fair amount. It is for your own protection as well as for the national good. The enemy forces are running loose whenever they get an opportunity. They are murdering defenceless people. They are pillaging, burning, outraging, wherever they go. Arms are needed to meet them and to beat them. Money is required to get the arms. That is the plain statement of the case. It is no appeal. It is just a request to every man and every woman who believes in Ireland to help the Army of Ireland to carry on the fight. During the next week collectors appointed by the Officer-in-charge of the area will call on you.
Readers of the Crown force newssheet The Weekly Summary were informed that the demand was made ‘regardless of their political views’ and accompanied by a ‘verbal threat that, unless the amount fixed is paid in cash, goods to that value will be seized’.52 On 3 December, IRA General Order No. 15 called for brigade commandants to organise a collection where each company would cover its own area. A ‘leaflet’ along the lines of that sent out by Cork No. 3 (who had, apparently, collected over £5,000 in three nights) would be prepared and distributed.53 There was now a national directive for the local collection of funds.
Much of the surviving testimony of Volunteers gives the impression that levy demands were, for the most part, paid up cheerfully. Luke Duffy told Ernie O’Malley that the fund was ‘subscribed to generously’ in Mayo while Thomas McInerney claimed that ‘The local people were very good indeed. They subscribed generously to the arms fund and other collections’ in Galway.54 In Tipperary, Martin Needham maintained that the ‘response to this levy around Lorrha was very good. I can recall only four defaulters, and they were all loyalists’.55 IRA Veterans from Ulster similarly record little or no hostility towards their collections.56 Charles McGinley was content to offer the reflection that in Donegal levies were ‘difficult to collect where not given voluntarily’ without any elaboration.57 Conscious of potential hostility, some local units in Ulster seem to have deliberately avoided conflict with loyalists. Edward Fullerton stated that in his area of County Down ‘All the Nationalist business houses were asked to subscribe and, in some cases, Unionist business people were approached and a few subscribed’, while Thomas Carragher recalled that ‘we got subscriptions in most nationalist houses. We did not, however, call for subscriptions at Unionist houses’.58 In Tyrone, the RIC reported a collection carried out by ‘strangers, who were in some instances, shown the most likely houses, by local guides’. It was ‘believed that they got very little money, and that most people refused them’ but prosecutions were made impossible ‘as the people who are otherwise well-disposed, are afraid to give information’.59
In the south, it was the Cork BMH witnesses who were often most forthcoming about hostility towards their collections. Seán Healy claimed that when a call was made for voluntary subscription, only the ‘faithful few’ responded. It was decided to place a levy on those who could pay and ‘threats of drastic action had frequently to be used to secure payments of those levies. In some cases we commandeered goods’.60 Both Con Calnan and Denis Murphy noted that it took threats about the seizure of cattle and other property to convince reluctant landowners to hand over cash.61 In Bandon, where there was a significant loyalist population, Jeremiah Deasy remembered that ‘all supporters of the national movement were approached and the levy collected without difficulty’ but ‘the hostile element – a goodly number of British loyalists’ had to be ‘tackled’ and ‘dealt with’ separately.62 Deasy was not unusual in labelling the unwilling as ‘British loyalists’, and they are often described as ‘loyalist’, ‘Protestant loyalist’, ‘Unionist’, or simply ‘hostile’, conveniently placing them in a distinct, separate, and easily definable minority.63 Resistance to levies was more complex, though, than that.
Some of those who refused to pay were indeed politically opposed to the IRA and the purpose for which money was collected. In Bandon, County Cork, Joseph Brennan, an uncle of two Volunteers in the area, was levied £20 but was ‘opposed to the Republican movement and he has refused to pay’. Described as ‘naturally a stubborn man’, Brennan’s nephew confirmed that ‘he is sincere enough in his political convictions’.64 Many of the loyalists who later sought compensation from the IGC claimed to have ‘refused’ to ‘subscribe’ to republican funds before the Truce. W. H. Smyth of Cork was not untypical in declaring that he had refused to give ‘any countenance, support or subscription to the rebels’.65 GHQ, so often out of touch with local attitudes and realities, was uneasy about forcing levies on political opponents. General Order No. 15 stated that the collection for the arms fund ‘should be made thoroughly’ and ‘None but declared enemies should be left unapproached’.66 In July, Richard Mulcahy (quoting Kevin O’Higgins) informed the OC of Cork No. 3 that ‘It will be understood, of course by any Volunteer that it is not “a perfectly natural and proper thing” to enforce the collection of any levy, by taking property from or attacking the person of any non-Republican who refused to subscribe’.67 Liam Lynch, OC of the 1st Southern Division, was similarly informed that the seizure of goods from those who refused to pay levies was ‘not in keeping with the spirit of General Order no 15’.68
A dislike of republican levies did not, however, necessarily indicate straightforward political dissent. In November 1920, Arthur Griffith received a letter from Ballinamore, County Leitrim:
We have recently received notices to pay to Officers of the Volunteers sums of money up to £2.10 to buy arms etc. We should like to know are those Orders from Headquarters or have they power to act on their own initiative? Having nothing against a Republic, as such, but resenting raids on our houses by armed and masked men, articles taken (not arms), dragged from our homes, revolvers fired over our heads, we naturally would like to know are we supposed to support acts of this description by subscriptions.
In response, the adjutant general wrote to the commandant of the Leitrim Brigade asking for a report on the raids and ‘the suggested collection of money contrary to the will of the subscribers’. There had been a number of similar complaints from the north Midlands and it was made clear that the cause of complaint should be removed.69 Writing in 1928, a Cork Sinn Féin member and republican supporter who had subscribed to the Dáil loan as a matter of ‘National Duty’, described how he had also paid towards the arms fund: ‘This Army Levy was compulsory – at least in the country – and the majority subscribed more through fear than love. There were no exceptions made. Everyone had to stump up if not in cash – in kind, if not directly – indirectly.’ The lines between ‘fear’ and ‘love’ were not necessarily set in stone. ‘I don’t know under what cat-e-gory I should be placed but I’ll leave it an open question.’70 In the difficult conditions of revolution civilians could find themselves torn between personal preference, the practicalities of everyday life, and the pressures applied by armed actors.
The Dáil loan, floated and collected to fund the republican counter-government between August 1919 and July 1920, though more overtly a voluntary collection, saw a similar dynamic. Stephen Gwynn claimed the collection used the methods of a ‘regime of forced levy, effectively carried out and producing large sums’, but Edward MacLysaght believed that ‘If any further proof of the whole-hearted support of the people were wanted it would be furnished by the remarkable response on the part of the small farmers – never too eager to subscribe to sentimental causes – when Michael Collins launched the First Dáil Loan.’71 IRA testimony (problematic in its own ways) emphasises the ease with which it was collected – ‘The loan was taken up well by the people and well subscribed’ – but the police felt it was anything but willing.72 The county inspector in Mayo commented on the IRA collecting for the Dáil loan ‘by persuasion and where that failed by intimidation’. A local meeting about the loan was ‘very small and unrepresentative. But of course intimidation will do the rest.’ Shortly after the loan was floated, the county inspector in Kerry reported that it was ‘not likely to meet any measure of support’ and added that many people who feared they would be ‘intimidated into subscribing’ had been pleased with its suppression. In Cork West Riding, the county inspector reported that police action disrupted collections ‘to which many people subscribe through absolute fear’ and in Kerry money was handed over but people were ‘afraid to report and afraid to admit to the police that they have been asked for subscriptions’. Another Mayo report insisted that subscriptions ‘were coming out by fear and terrorism rather than from Love and devotion and when all failed threats developed into … facts’.73
In his memoir, British director of intelligence Sir Ormonde Winter wrote that many loyalists were ‘forced to contribute to the Irish Republican loan to secure immunity. If instead of subscribing to the loan they evinced sympathy with the Crown forces, they ran the risk of being shot or having their houses burnt down over their heads by the rebels’.74 There is no evidence of anyone being shot or having property burned specifically as a punishment for refusing to pay towards the Dáil fund but, perhaps, the fear was enough. Arthur Mitchell has described the idea that ‘some Unionists purchased bonds as insurance for the future’ as ‘conceivable but unlikely’.75 More likely, then, paying into the loan was a way for those who were otherwise loyal to the Crown to avoid becoming targets. When a list of subscribers was found among captured documents, Winter was surprised at the ‘price that had been paid for immunity’, and also to find the names of some of his personal friends.76
Defiance and community politics
Civilian behaviour regularly conformed to pre-revolutionary norms based on personal interest. Likewise, notions of loyalty and dissent were influenced by survival instinct and could be shifted within communities by the presence or absence of intimidation. In the town of Kilkee, County Clare, Michael Keane and his son suffered from a trade boycott from May to November 1921. The lengthy file of correspondence on their case highlights the prominence of local conditions in the working of IRA intimidation. An IRA ‘Court of Enquiry’ confirmed that the Keanes were accused of ‘Entertaining enemy police’; Michael Keane allegedly gave information leading to a raid and J. J. Keane was said to have accompanied ‘Black and Tans’ when a man was threatened with shooting.77 Denying the more serious charges against his family, J. J. Keane and his solicitor took advantage of the Truce to approach, among others, Austin Stack in the hope of ending the boycott.
Keane admitted that he had been in contact with the local police but asserted that ‘We only did the same as practically every house and persons in Kilkee who were not boycotted or charged.’ Others in the town, he claimed, ‘had 3 times more to do with the police than we had’. On the verge of having to close down their businesses in October, J. J. Keane described the effect of the boycott:
Picture for yourself a man’s business places closed down since last May, not a 1/- coming in to feed or keep his wife & 5 children, to destroy the milk of 5 cows morn. & evg. For 5 months. His own people friends & cousins daren’t speak to himself or his family.
They had property damaged in May 1921, the boycott had cost them over £1,200, and their name was ‘Disgraced all over the country’. Keane maintained that the whole trouble was the result of personal spite and a grudge with one neighbour in particular, Thomas Marrinan, with whom the family had a falling out several years earlier.78 Marrinan happened to be a member of the Kilkee IRA and a battalion vice-commandant.79 Among the many in Kilkee guilty of association with the ‘enemy’, Keane protested that he was singled out ‘because I had an old enemie, who taking advantage of the Truce & under the protection of Sinn Fein used his influence to victimise & blackguard ourselves and our business’.80 An IRA enquiry at brigade level, unsurprisingly, believed it had found enough evidence to verify guilt but GHQ found it difficult to discern the truth amidst local rivalries, claims, and counter-claims. They remained unconvinced and unable to substantiate most of the accusations.81 Divisional OC Michael Brennan was unsympathetic towards the Keanes’ plight and claimed to have informed Michael Keane that, if he had been in charge in West Clare before the Truce, ‘at least the son would have been shot’. The boycott was, though, eventually lifted ‘as the Government has decided that the financial loss which had been inflicted on him met the case.’ But Keane’s excuse that he was no worse than anyone else in the town only served as proof to Brennan that ‘practically the whole population of Kilkee should have been shot’: ‘I pointed out that if a few of the worst offenders like the Keane family had been executed, such a good example might have shown the others the error of their ways.’82
Aside from the obvious difficulty of distancing political activity from personal feuds and jealousies, the case of the Keane family points to perspectives that can be gleaned from viewing revolutionary intimidation in a town or parish setting. Why, first of all, were so many of the town’s inhabitants willing and able to defy the IRA and maintain friendly discourse with the police? The Crown forces had maintained a strong presence in Kilkee up to the Truce. The town had been the scene of early police persecution and in 1918 policemen were stoned by locals and a constable tied to a railing, but by September 1920 their control was strong enough to ensure the suspension of Dáil court sittings.83 An IRA veteran from the area later admitted that it was one of three towns completely held by ‘the enemy’.84 The town clearly had a culture of interaction with the police, which was renewed as their strength increased and it became safe to do so. J. J. Keane pointed out that Joseph Greene, who made an accusation against his father, ‘proved that any time he himself had a complaint to make that it was to the R.I.C. he went’; at the IRA enquiry Greene admitted he was on ‘good terms’ with the local RIC sergeant. Keane also accused Thomas Marrinan and his brother of drinking with the police.85
The behaviour of Kilkee’s inhabitants would surely have been punished by the republican element in the town had they been in a position to do so. When an opportunity arose during the Truce, for instance, they were not slow to single out a vulnerable group for persecution. In October 1921, the Kilkee garrison was concentrated in nearby Kilrush. As soon as the Crown forces had left, the families who remained were reported as ‘having a bad time there; being pushed about and jeered at as they go through the streets’ (a breach of the Truce for which Michael Brennan publicly ‘expressed regret’).86 But if police strength played an important part in the level of hostility shown towards them in Kilkee, why were the Keane family so effectively boycotted over five months? J. J. Keane suggested one explanation: ‘There would be a good many people glad to have our places closed down for good as there is over £2000 due by them to us & they say they needn’t pay same.’87 Self-interest and economic concern, it has been seen, frequently motivated collaboration (in Cork, Florrie O’Donoghue referred to a ‘garrison clique’ who were loyal to the Crown through ‘sentiment and self-interest’88). Where there was no effective IRA deterrent, the people of Kilkee served their own interests and ignored the RIC boycott but, equally, where local disruption offered a chance to avoid paying a bill, they were willing to accede to another boycott ordered by the local IRA. This was not uncommon. During the Civil War the National Army reported that around Newcastlewest, County Limerick, the ‘country people’ backed the republicans as they could ‘avoid payment of both their civil debt and their rates and taxes … whilst chaos reigned’ but the ‘town’s people are supporters of the Army for the same reason, that they will get their accounts paid when more lawful times arrive’.89 In a broader context, Stathis Kalyvas has shown that in civil war, the higher the level of control exercised by a political actor the greater the level of collaboration. ‘Loyalty’ can be acquired through the provision of ‘mutual benefits’ as much as by ideological commitment.90
Disputes arising from personal antipathies are not uncommon in a community setting and the conditions of guerrilla war could accentuate or generate animosity, accusations, and counter-accusations. In his study of community-based intimidation during ‘Troubles’ era Northern Ireland, John Darby found that an ‘intimidatory culture’, where rumours and suggestions mixed with the experience of violence to create perception, could breed a menacing atmosphere ‘more subtle and invidious’ than cruder forms of violence.91 Edmund Griffin’s son, mentioned above, had been terrified that a local row would bring the ‘eternal disgrace’ of being shot as a spy. In March 1921, Richard Foley, a farmer from Youghal, County Cork, had sheep stolen by local Volunteers in lieu of a levy it was alleged he had refused to pay. Foley claimed that one of the Volunteers had ‘tried to blacken my character and said he was afraid I would give information to the Black & Tans’ but insisted that ‘I am and always was as good an Irishmen as any of those men’ and ‘Even in the past my family were well known to be staunch Nationalists.’ The local Volunteers had little sympathy, stating that he ‘was never on friendly terms with our people’ and ‘has always been a source of trouble in that particular area’. The local Volunteers fined Foley for ‘having attempted to prevent people from contributing to the levy and spreading false reports about the I.R.A.’ and though Foley believed his treatment ‘was all private spite and done simply to cause me trouble and annoyance’, the Volunteers argued that ‘if such action was not taken, we would not have had such a good collection.’ But it is Foley’s membership of the problematic Farmer’s Union that may most adequately explain the hostility: ‘practically every member of the Farmers Union, with one or two honourable exceptions are NOT even members of the political side of our movement and unless we act very carefully they will attempt to draw wedges into our organisation’.92
Complaints like Foley’s about earlier IRA conduct often surfaced after the Truce and were usually met with equally stern rebuttals from local IRA commanders. In Bailieborough, County Cavan, for instance, a publican was fined for serving alcohol after a fundraising dance and complained to his TD, Arthur Griffith, that ‘I have given subscriptions time after time to the Sinn Fein & Volunteer organisations & … have been victimised by an alien Government, through supporting Sinn Fein (being refused permits for my motor van and lorry)’. The Volunteer concerned countered that Lee had not had permits refused but, in fact, offered his van to the RIC while refusing it to the local Sinn Féin band. The sardonic explanation offered was that ‘he may have contributed to the Volunteer and Sinn Fein Organisations, but men carrying on such a business as he generally do, as it is to their own benefit to be popular’.93
Such interaction could be potentially dangerous to those on the wrong side. In January 1922, Kate Fehilly complained to Michael Collins that her ex-soldier husband ‘has been and is being persecuted by the I.R.A., since last March. … It must at once strike you that this is a hard condition especially when he is not conscious of having done wrong. … There is no such thing as a direct charge and trial to give him an opportunity of defending himself.’ The local battalion’s vice-commandant offered the ominous defence that ‘My policy was that those who were not for us at the time were against us, and as I had been informed Fehilly was in touch with the enemy, I naturally presumed he was hostile and even suspected him of giving information to the enemy.’ Kate Fehilly was accused of being ‘in constant touch with the enemy as she used wash in the Barracks’. The brigade adjutant was willing to accept that ‘They both seem to be of the type that proved a constant menace to the National movement’, while the divisional adjutant believed ‘it is clear that Fehilly and his wife have been long connected with and in the employment of the enemy’, before recommending deportation.94
Foley, Lee, and Fehilly are all examples of the varying ways civilians could fall into conflict with the IRA. The final section of this chapter will explore this further and examine how a group of self-proclaimed loyalists experienced the revolution in a single community.
Arva is located in the west of County Cavan, bordering two provinces (Leinster and Connaught) and two counties (Leitrim and Longford). In 1911, the District Electoral Division (DED) of Arva comprised over 1,800 residents, including 650 in Arva town. Over 65 per cent of the district’s population were under the age of 40, with 20 per cent aged 10 or under. Non-Catholics accounted for 32 per cent of the population (the majority of whom were Church of Ireland but also included Methodists, Presbyterians, and Brethren), a far higher proportion than the 19 per cent in the rest of the county.95 Most of the district’s Protestant population was concentrated in a number of surrounding townlands and only 14 per cent of the town’s urban population were non-Catholic.
In the late 1920s, at least 37 residents of Arva and the surrounding district applied for compensation to the Irish Grants Committee. In doing so, they were among over 4,000 or so self-proclaimed southern Irish loyalists who put their own definition of loss and loyalty on paper. The second IGC had first met in October 1928 with a remit to decide on cases of compensation to southern Irish loyalists for loss and injury sustained between 11 July 1921 and 12 May 1923. Applicants had to prove any losses suffered were the result of their ‘allegiance to the Government of the United Kingdom’.96 The files are a rich source of first-hand, near contemporary witness testimony covering a broad range of experiences, but are also applications for compensation and thus open to embellishment, reconstruction, or fictionalisation. This section will make use of the forms submitted by the Arva sample to move towards a broader appreciation of the loyalist experience in a community setting. The aim will not be to paint Arva as a ‘typical’ district during the Irish Revolution, but to examine how intimidation and coercion worked or failed in one locality. A further aim will be to examine the strength of the files of the IGC as a means of assessing intimidation and coercion during the revolution.
Who were the Arva sample? Demographically, they were unrepresentative. A disproportionate number were urban dwellers; 15 (40 per cent) were resident in Arva town, which only housed about a third of the total population. Males made up a significant majority of claimants (76 per cent) despite only accounting for just over half of the total population and, even for a district with a large non-Catholic minority, Protestants are over-represented, accounting for 28 applicants (75 per cent, made up of 25 members of the Church of Ireland and 3 Methodists). Applicants were also generally older, with a median age of 50 (including 7 who were in their seventh decade). If the sample is not demographically typical, they are characteristic of the county neighbours who applied for compensation with the IGC. A survey of 86 Cavan applicants shows an identical median age of 50, a similar gender imbalance in favour of males at 78 per cent, and a similarly high proportion of non-Catholic applicants at 78 per cent. The professional make-up of both samples further suggests a common profile but one out of kilter with the demographics of the county. In Cavan in 1911, 30 per cent of the population were categorised as in agricultural employment, 6 per cent industrial, 2 per cent professional, 2 per cent domestic, and 59 per cent ‘indefinite’ or ‘non-productive’.97 By way of contrast, as seen in Table 3.1, almost 60 per cent of Cavan IGC applicants worked in agriculture, the vast majority land-owing farmers, and almost 30 per cent in commerce or industry. The high percentages of commercial and industrial applicants in Arva, and the relative absence of unskilled labourers, are indicative of an urban and a middle-class base to loyalism in the area.
Only nine fatalities directly related to revolutionary conflict were recorded in Cavan between January 1919 and December 1921 and in that period no civilian was killed in Arva.98 The Longford IRA shot two policemen stationed in the town on the morning of 1 May 1921 after they had crossed into County Longford on private business.99 A successful attack on Arva RIC barracks on 25 September 1920, the first in the county, was the single dramatic military event in revolutionary Arva and effectively left the area without a police presence for a period. By February 1921, the authorities had responded to calls for the restoration of police with the arrival of a garrison of ‘Black and Tans’ into the town.100 It was these police who were the only victims of shooting attacks in the region.101
Cavan sample, including Arva
Available evidence suggests there was little armed loyalist resistance to the IRA in Arva. The only recorded instance of Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) activity in Arva uncovered for this study was, ironically, directed against a loyalist. In January 1921, a group of armed men entered the premises of Jennie Elliott (later a successful IGC applicant) and, ‘by show of force, presenting revolvers’, took away £30 worth of goods. Elliott was handed a note from ‘“A” Company, 1st Battalion U.V.F.’ stating ‘These clothes are at present commandeered by the Ulster Volunteer Force’.102 Three of the IGC applicants claimed to have been members of the UVF but William Irwin and William Carleton do not seem to have been active by 1920.103 James Black wrote that he had been a member of the UVF on his application form, and in a later letter to the committee that he had ‘done the Loyal Volunteers patrols at night for six months when the Civil power had left this locality’; these patrols were organised by Lord Farnham, a leading figure of Cavan Unionism.104 Farnham’s ‘Loyal Volunteers’ was probably one of the local independent loyalist organisations that emerged in 1920 and 1921 alongside the official reformation of the UVF in mid-1920.105 As they seem to have been a direct response to the temporary withdrawal of the RIC from the area, the group probably folded again once a new garrison of police had been installed. Police reports suggest they had little success preventing IRA incursion.106
After the attack on Arva police barracks in September 1920, it was reported that ‘a large quantity of rifles, revolvers, and ammunition belonging to Ulster Volunteers’ stored in the barracks had been ‘taken away in motor cars by the raiders’.107 This was surely a significant blow to any attempt to arm loyalists in the area, but it preceded the raid on Jennie Elliott’s shop meaning the organisation, or at least the name, had not entirely disappeared. As a force to oppose the IRA, however, they were seemingly ineffective. Farnham’s ‘Loyal Volunteers’ were restricted to, in James Blacks’ words, ‘striving to be on the look out for armed raiders that was prowling the country’.108 There was clearly a tradition of UVF membership in the area. In 1914, 55.8 per cent of eligible adult males were members of the UVF in Cavan, the highest percentage in Ulster.109 Failure to have partition extended to include Cavan took much of the heart out of organised loyalism in the county and the creation of the Special Constabularies in the six counties drew some active men across the border, but the UVF was certainly alive in Cavan in 1920 and 1921.110 Loyalists in Arva still had access to some arms by 1921, but the exact make-up and organisation of armed loyalism in the area, and in Cavan as a whole, needs further research. Whatever its composition or strength, the UVF or its equivalents do not seem to have been in a position to prevent threats, damage to property, and boycotting of loyalists in Arva.
The Department of Finance compensation files held in the National Archives of Ireland and the Compensation (Ireland) Commission Register of Claimants for Cavan hold applications for seven of the current sample.111 George Cartwright (who died before his claim was awarded) was granted £930 at an undefended county court hearing for the burning of his home.112 Jennie Elliott had also claimed compensation through the county courts.113 The IGC stipulated that claimants should have previously applied to the Irish Free State for compensation but this was not strictly enforced and an explanation that no application was made through fear, threats, or even ignorance was accepted.114 Only four explained that fears for their safety prevented them applying to the Free State.115 James McCabe and Harriet Johnston declined to mention that they had applied for, and received, Free State compensation.116 Most of those who had already sought redress through the Free State were clearly discouraged from applying to the IGC – two had requested application forms but decided against submitting a claim117 – but this new scheme of redress also encouraged others to come forward for the first time, and to do so specifically as southern Irish loyalists. That they now came forward, some having admitted to being previously frightened, suggests that any fear of retribution had significantly subsided and was unlikely to have deterred many others from applying. The sample, therefore, offers an imperfect but useful insight into the character and nature of loyalists and loyalism in Cavan.
All 13 applications from the town described a loss of trade as a result of an IRA boycott. Three urban applicants (Richard Hewitt, Johnston Hewitt, and George Hill) claimed for additional losses owing to damage to property or looting and another (Jennie Elliott) for a stolen motor car.118 Boycotting was reported by eight of the rural applicants while one also claimed for the loss of his milk trade.119 Mary Sheridan claimed for the loss of her ex-soldier son’s income after he was threatened and forced to quit the area.120 Four farmers lost access to land: James Johnston was prevented from selling his farm, driven from his land in April 1921 and later forced to accept £600 for it (the land was valued at £1,000); both George W. Cartwright and James Young were removed from their land but later able to return; George Cartwright (no relation of George W. Cartwright) had his home burned on 13 March 1922; William Carleton, a neighbour of Cartwright’s, fled his own home after a raid by armed and masked men left him fearing the same treatment and was reinstated in July 1924.121 Some 12 applicants reported raids on their homes, most of which took place in the first half of 1922.
Only five of the Arva sample (11 per cent) described suffering physical violence. George Jackson claimed to have been beaten during a raid in April 1922.122 His sister, Martha, who lived in the same house, claimed the same raiders struck her on the head; she had also been shot at and wounded as she cycled to warn William Carleton that his house was to be burned down.123 During a June 1922 raid, Charles Woods’ son was allegedly ‘kidnapped’ and badly beaten, losing nine of his teeth, before being used as protection by raiders as they visited other homes.124 Thomas Johnston was beaten with a rifle butt ‘inflicting a severe wound and causing considerable loss of blood’, while his brother Wilson was also assaulted. Thomas did not have the wound medically treated for a number of months, he said, as he was two miles from a doctor and afraid to make the journey.125 George Cartwright told the county court he had been hit with the butt of a rifle on the night his house was burned, but did not mention this on his IGC claim form.126
Boycotting, by far the most common complaint, was directly related to the arrival of ‘Black and Tans’ in February 1921 (though applicants ubiquitously refer to them incorrectly as ‘Auxiliaries’). The testimony in the claim files describe how the arrival of new police customers in February 1921 prompted a number of traders to open business with them, thereby marking themselves as deviant in the eyes of the IRA, and continued to do so in spite of warnings to stop. With police intervention curtailed by the Truce, boycotting increased in frequency and intensity.127 The rural population became particularly exposed after the Truce (the local IRA made a point of noting that ‘The R.I.C. in Arva have limited their patrols to the town’).128 A referee for applicant Richard Kemp described the efficiency of the boycott he suffered:
So perfect was the system of espionage of the I.R.A. and their friends that once a man incurred their censure it was absolutely impossible for him to sell cattle or goods publicly but if one of their own favourites bought privately, at half the value of the article, they conveniently shut their eyes.129
By mid-1922 the restricted police presence had been completely withdrawn.
Receipt of an award by the IGC was contingent on the applicant proving that any loss was on account of their allegiance to the Crown. The definitions of loyalty and behaviour provided by the applicants therefore offer valuable insights into applicants’ sense of their own loyalism or, at the very least, the loyalism they felt would be most appealing. In Irish revolutionary historiography the one act that has come, more than any other, to dominate the discussion on the behaviour of loyalists is informing.130 But informing is notably rare among the sample testimony. While a certain reticence may have remained regarding such admissions when applications were being written up, proving one had done so was likely to add substantial weight to a claim. Michael Culley is the only Arva applicant who directly mentions an instance where he passed information to the police, warning two police constables of an impending raid the night before Arva barracks was burned.131 In a reference on behalf of the Jackson siblings, one of the constables claimed on good authority that a Jackson brother (he does not specify which) informed the police of another impending raid. Copies of threatening letters are included among their correspondence:
NOTICE. Take Notice. You are giving the Black and Tans information. Stop it or you will be shot. Spy. Beware. Sooner or later we will get you. Signed I.R.A.
Notice. Take Notice. You are giving information to the Police. You saved them from a ambush on the Bruse Bray. You informed on Commandant McKeown. You tried to get him dun in. Trator beware. Sooner or later will get you. Signed I.R.A.
The Jacksons all mention being accused of informing, but make no mention of passing information themselves. There seems to be little doubt that the Jacksons assisted both the RIC and their loyalist neighbours, but it is not so clear if that went as far as informing. A former RIC district inspector for the area offered a different explanation: ‘In August 1920 a party of military from Cavan surprised a number of men at midnight near Jackson’s house, and fired on and wounded a member of the party. In view of this fact local suspicion was aroused that the Jackson family was passing information to the military.’132 Several other applicants also describe being accused of being RIC informers, or include letters from referees who insist they gave information, but do not themselves describe a particular instance where they did so.133 As will be seen later, suspicion often outweighed any hard evidence of informing.
The loyalists of Arva did not have to fulfil the role of informer to feel they had done their loyal duty. The most common evidence of allegiance offered was a less dramatic connection to the Crown forces: 21 claimed to have provided the RIC with supplies, services, and hospitality (but not information); 12 of the sample offered a direct personal or family connection to service in the police or military, while six of the Protestant applicants described an association with a loyalist organisation. For the purposes of receiving redress for losses and indignities suffered, this definition of allegiance proved problematic. The IGC was adamant that the ‘ nexus between loyalty and injury should be established’ but acknowledged that this was ‘often difficult’.134 Socialising with Crown forces was, as R. B. McDowell has noted, normal social behaviour for loyalists.135 Compensation claimants were often unsuccessful in their attempts to prove that this ‘normal’ pre-Truce behaviour equated to loyalty. Boycotts were also difficult to identify and quantify and eight of the 14 applicants (57 per cent) who claimed their businesses were boycotted in the town received no award. The three who did receive compensation had also claimed for separate losses and were only compensated for these, meaning that almost 80 per cent of claims for urban boycotts were rejected. This is a far higher rejection rate than the overall IGC figure of 44.5 per cent, but why were Arva town’s loyalists significantly less likely to receive an award?136 There was little doubt on the committee’s part that these claimants had supplied the town’s Crown forces. Rather, the issue was whether they had suffered a loss of trade solely on the basis of a boycott and whether that boycott was the result of their allegiance to the British government.
Simon Henry Hewitt, for instance, claimed he had a successful business as a vintner, grocer, and auctioneer prior to 1921. When the new garrison of police arrived in February 1921 they ‘flocked’ to him for ‘liquid refreshments and tobacco as I was the only loyalist publican in the Town’. Soon ‘the Sinn F[einers] issued an edict that none of these should deal with me, and so my business was rigidly boycotted by the local rebels who “blacklisted me” as one who had supported the “Foreign Enemy” (meaning England)’. The committee rejected Hewitt’s claim, noting his passbook lodgements did not match a statement that his profits went from £200 per annum before 1921 to nil afterwards. Further, his lodgements indicated an increase in 1920 and 1921 and only a marginal drop afterwards. Committee secretary, Major A. Reid Jamieson, concluded that it was ‘preposterous for applicant to claim he was the victim of an extensive boycott and I submit that his loss of profit was due to economic conditions and trade depression’. Attempts by Hewitt’s wife and Revd W. A. MacDougall137 to explain the discrepancy were to no avail.138 Similarly, Richard Hewitt claimed he was boycotted for supplying meat to the RIC. MacDougall confirmed that Hewitt had been raided and recalled some threats made against him but could not be sure about a boycott. Jamieson similarly concluded that ‘the Royal Irish Constabulary and Government Forces were such good customers, that other trade could be ignored; boycotting made it impossible to trade for a time, but that the departure of their customers was the chief cause of the loss’.139 Serving Crown forces during the ‘troubled times’ was their main basis for loyalty but how does one prove one did so because of an avowed loyalty to British rule in Ireland and not simply because it made financial sense? Incidentally, no applicants mention serving the Crown forces in the town before 1921, or a loss of profits after the burning of Arva barracks in 1920.
The committee’s rationale in dealing with claims can tell as much as the applicants’ own testimony and for that reason it is important to understand the criteria by which they were judged. Grants were awarded based on a ‘thorough examination of references, medical certificates, bank and account books and expert evidence’.140 Applicants to the scheme were required to provide the names of two ‘responsible persons’ from whom the committee could obtain references, with local clergymen, bank managers, solicitors, and policeman most often listed; applicants from the same community usually drew from a small pool of respected individuals. Many claims were forwarded through the Southern Irish Loyalist Relief Association (SILRA) and letters of reference often came from sources that can be easily identified as fellow loyalists (neighbours who had also applied, former policemen and soldiers, etc.) A survey of the Arva claims highlights the difficulty in securing an award. The total amount claimed was over £25,000 but the total received just over £7,200. Almost half of the Arva applicants (17, or 45 per cent) received no award, matching the overall failure rate. Of those, 11 were considered insufficiently substantiated by referees, but only one (that of Maggie Masterson) was considered ‘Not Genuine’. Bernard Matthews and Mary Sheridan’s claims were deemed ‘Out of Scope’, James Young was found to be unable to provide any evidence of his losses, and Richard Kemp received ‘no recommendation’.141 British ‘anxiety as to whether the Irish Grants Committee has satisfied themselves that the claimants, in whose favour recommendations has been made, were really loyalists’ led to a Cabinet question and subsequent enquiries yielding little cause for concern.142 By the time it concluded, the IGC was satisfied that it had kept the margin for error as small as possible and was impressed with the ‘bona fides’ of the majority of claimants.143
This is not to assume that there were not issues with the committee’s sourcing of information. When the local Garda Síochána and Office of Public Works investigated George Cartwright’s Damage to Property claim in 1923, for instance, they heard that ‘somebody had years ago been evicted from the farm, and advantage was taken by irregulars of the trouble then existing, to get possession of the farm’ and noted that Cartwright’s wife and daughter had offered no explanation for the burning.144 Cartwright’s various accounts of the events surrounding the burning are consistent, and not in dispute, but he repeatedly neglected to mention a potential agrarian motivation for the burning and his claim file suggests that the IGC remained unaware of it. Miriam Moffitt has noticed something similar with claims submitted by the McNeill family in Aughavas, County Leitrim.145 Community politics were complex enough for those investigating incidents while they were happening; at a remove of almost a decade it became far more difficult again.
The committee’s most important referee for the area was also not without its problems. Revd W. A. MacDougall, Church of Ireland rector for the parish, was the most common referee submitted by applicants and considered by the committee to be ‘a very respectable reference’.146 MacDougall had, though, only been appointed incumbent in Arva in February 1921 and had limited knowledge of the pre-Truce loyalty of Arva residents. When asked to provide a reference for Peter McBrien he admitted as much and recommended that McBrien seek another referee.147 Moreover, as the Church of Ireland rector, MacDougall had his strongest social, personal, or spiritual connections with his co-religionists (even then, he often claimed to have been unaware of individual raids or boycotts against Church of Ireland applicants). None of the Roman Catholic applicants from the district received an award and this was at least in part due to MacDougall’s failure to provide suitable evidence on their behalf. He had, in fact, suggested that the committee ‘give all the Protestant claimants some little compensation for they all suffered more or less for their attachment to the British connexion’.148 Ellen Reilly bitterly remarked, and not without reason, that ‘A friend told me that I had no chance of getting anything from your Committee as I am a Roman Catholic, evidently my friend was correct in his opinion.’149 More generally, the ‘reliable persons’ recommended by the committee were members of the educated middle class and, therefore, potentially subject to the influence of the class, religious, and gender divisions inevitably generated within communities. Rather than favouring the applicants, this was often to their detriment. Gemma Clark has also noticed ‘snobbery’ within the process, indicating that ‘the British government generously compensated those better able to articulate their cause or provide references from a respected community figure’.150
Community politics, personality clashes, jealousy, and grudges could guide the evidence available to the committee and provide both a cautionary note when dealing with the claim files and further evidence of community politics in action. Friends may have supported each other, while neighbours who did not back a claimant did not necessarily want news of their evidence to travel. Local solicitor William Reid was unable to confirm the details of Michael Culley’s claim and hoped his letter would not be read by anyone outside the committee ‘as it might get me into serious trouble here’.151 John Scott was ‘under the impression that someone who does not wish him well has written to the committee to prejudice his case’.152 One W. Johnston wrote to SILRA stating that a number of applicants from the area were, in fact, ‘well-known Republicans and were responsible for many of the outrages which took place in his district’. Johnston appeared, to Major I. H. G. White of SILRA, to be ‘somewhat illiterate’ but had named James McCabe, Patrick Drumm, and Maggie Masterson (along with two others of whom there appears to be no record of an application).153 McCabe, Drumm, and Masterson all had their claims rejected, though the influence of this additional evidence is not clear. Only Masterson’s was described as ‘not genuine’, but she had several references from neighbours and RIC pensioners supporting her claims to loyalty.154 Further, the realities of life in a small community made interaction with both sides of the revolutionary divide almost inevitable. Jennie Elliott had goods commandeered by members of the IRA but also, as noted above, by ‘“A” Company 1st Battalion U.V.F.’155 To Revd MacDougall, William Scott, an ex-soldier and policeman, was ‘not a mere lip loyalist’ but he had also escaped murder owing to his having ‘a couple of friends among the rebels’.156
The records of the Irish Grants Committee forcefully highlight the difficulty, perhaps the impossibility, of adequately defining loyalty and equating it satisfactorily with civilian behaviour. Just as it is not ‘historically acceptable’ to ‘portray Ulster unionists as unswerving imperialists and opponents of home rule’, neither is it suitable to assume that ‘southern loyalists’ were a homogenous and unwavering faction.157 Even categorising Cavan loyalists as ‘southern’, as the IGC did, is a consequence of partition and potentially distorts the reality of experience and perception for many of those loyalists. The loyalty put in application forms was, by its very nature, dictated by and adapted to suit the task of declaring ‘allegiance to the government of the United Kingdom’. At least 20 of the sample (74 per cent) (all Protestant) signed the Ulster Solemn League and Covenant or Women’s Declaration in September 1912, an assertion of a specifically Ulster and defiantly ‘unionist’ identity and far from an act of loyalty towards the Crown.158 Unsurprisingly, this went unmentioned on the covenanters’ application forms. David Fitzpatrick has estimated that in Cavan 71.3 per cent of non-Catholic males aged over 16 signed the Covenant and 65.4 per cent of non-Catholic females over the age of 16 signed the Women’s Declaration.159 The Arva IGC sample were, therefore, marginally more enthusiastic covenanters in 1912 but it also worth noting the influence of communal pressure. As Fitzpatrick has noted, ‘majoritarian solidarity had unpleasant results for dissentients’ and ‘non-participants risked being denounced as renegades or traitors, facing the prospects of violence, abuse, intimidation, and social ostracism’.160 Loyalists and Protestants were just as likely to waver, to adapt their preferences to suit their conditions, or simply to hope to be left alone, as their nationalist and Catholic neighbours.
Local responses to the IRA, the nature of defiance, and its motivations, were fluid, shifting, and rarely simple. At their heart they were dictated by Kalyvas’ two key motivators for civilian behaviour during irregular war: survival instinct and economic concern.161 Reaction to a boycott, levy, collection, or Dáil edict, whether cooperation or resistance, was as much dictated by its potential economic impact as it was by any strongly held political allegiances, even where those were present. This influence can be seen within Joost Augusteijn’s analysis of the mobilisation of the IRA and its regional spread. Augusteijn has argued that communities could have a restrictive effect on IRA activity and Volunteers who lived and worked in their home communities were reluctant to put the safety and property of family and neighbours at risk by engaging in operations that might bring reprisals. It was when they were forced to break their ties with their local communities and go ‘on the run’ that they were more likely to initiate offensive action as the consequences for the local population became subordinate to the cause. Intended victims had to be sufficiently ostracised from the community and enough opposition endured to encourage men to take the campaign ‘on the run’ and thus remove themselves from the restraints of family and neighbours.162 At the heart of this was an acceptance, however superficial or reluctant, that the financial costs of war could influence public opinion and that excessive attacks or reprisals by either side could alienate support for either side.
Civilian responses to revolutionary activity are also, in many ways, personal. Stubbornness and fearlessness are often unpredictable traits, as are submission and cowardice. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the records of the IGC. Some claimants described how threats and intimidation produced ‘extreme bodily fear’ or ‘intense mental anxiety’, or how they supplied food, money, or accommodation ‘at the point of the rifle & revolver’.163 Others simply became more obdurate or could view threats ‘as not in any way serious … not robust’.164 Civilian reactions are also intensely local. In the Irish revolutionary context, the civilian and community responses to the republican guerrilla campaign were firmly dictated by local conditions. A letter threatening death in Cork, where lethal violence was an increasingly regular occurrence, could have a very different meaning to a similar letter posted in County Wicklow. The occurrence of defiance was influenced by the nature and frequency of punishment. Where behaviour was profitable and went unpunished, it was unlikely to stop; where non-lethal methods were found to be inadequate, they could be followed by lethal methods. Equally, the disposition and character of local Volunteers and collective units – their individual concerns, preoccupations, suspicions, and perceptions – determined the ‘offences’ that became worthy of punishment, and the form of that punishment. The following chapter will examine punishment and violence, both lethal and non-lethal, and discuss the marked regional variations that are such a striking feature of Irish revolutionary activity.
1 For a contemporaneous discussion of the origins and workings of the Dáil Courts, see The constructive work of Dáil Éireann, No. 1 (Dublin, 1921). For detailed modern treatments, see Mary Kotsonouris, Retreat from revolution: the Dáil courts, 1920–24 (Dublin, 1994); Mary Kotsonouris, The winding-up of the Dáil courts, 1922–1925: an obvious duty (Dublin, 2004), esp. pp. 1–24; David Foxton, Revolutionary lawyers: Sinn Féin and crown courts in Ireland and Britain, 1916–1923 (Dublin 2008).
2 BMH WS 1770 (Kevin O’Shiel).
3 Kotsonouris, The winding up of the Dáil Courts, p. 7.
4 Foxton, Revolutionary lawyers, pp. 188–9.
5 Fitzpatrick, Politics and Irish life, pp. 145–6.
6 Edward Egan claim (PRONI: D989/B/3/9). The judge, he proudly asserted, commended him for his bravery.
7 MCRs, CI, Leitrim, Apr. 1921 (TNA: CO 904/115); Coleman, County Longford and the Irish revolution, p. 107.
8 MCRs, CI, Kildare, Nov. 1920 (TNA: CO 904/113).
9 BMH WS 708 (Conor A. Maguire).
10 McDowell, Crisis and decline, p. 86.
11 Weekly Intelligence Summary, 6th Division, 12 Jul. 1920 (IWM: P363).
12 MCRs, CI, Waterford, Jul. 1921 (TNA: CO 904/112). For a similar case in Galway, see Leeson, Black and Tans, p. 10.
13 The Grand Jurors in Waterford were fined £100, the Common Jurors £25, and the Petty Jurors £10: Weekly Intelligence Summary, 6th Division, 12 Jul. 1920 (IWM: P363). For a description of similar conditions in Galway, see Leeson, Black and Tans, p. 43.
14 BMH WS 1263 (Charles Pinkman).
15 Foxton, Revolutionary lawyers, p. 192.
16 See, for example, MCRS, CI, Mayo, Jun. 1920; Cork ER, Aug. 1920 (TNA: CO 904/112); Meath, Oct. 1920 (/113).
17 ‘Memorandum of a meeting held on July 15th at the House of Commons’ (TNA: PRO 30/67/43).
18 See, for example, Kotsonouris, Retreat from revolution, p. 24; Fitzpatrick, Politics and Irish life, p. 145; O’Callaghan, Revolutionary Limerick, p. 87, Foxton, Revolutionary lawyers, p. 191.
19 Fitzpatrick, Politics and Irish life, p. 151.
20 Joice M. Nankivell and Sydney Loch, Ireland in travail (London, 1922), pp. 145–6.
21 Report from ‘S Ua B’, organiser, Cavan, 6 Jun. 1921 (NAI: DECC/10/3).
22 G. F. Maloney to MHA, 9 Jan. 1922 (/10/3).
23 Registrar, East Cavan to MHA, 12 Jan. 1922 (/10/2).
24 P. C. Dwane, Limerick, to MHA, 13 Apr. 1922 (/13/5).
25 D. S. Johnson, ‘The Belfast Boycott, 1920–1922’, in L. A. Clarkson and J. M. Goldstrom (eds.), Irish population, economy, and society: essays in honour of the late K. H. Connell (Oxford, 1981); Arthur Mitchell, Revolutionary government in Ireland: Dáil Éireann, 1919–22 (Dublin, 1995), pp. 168–72.
26 Hart, The I.R.A. and its enemies, p. 102.
27 See, for example, Johnson, ‘Belfast boycott’, p. 307; Lynch, The northern IRA, p. 44; Terence Dooley, ‘From the Belfast boycott to the Boundary Commission: fears and hopes in County Monaghan’, Clogher Record, Vol. 15, No. 1 (1994), pp. 93–4.
28 Robert Alexander Browne claim (TNA: CO 762/95/20).
29 John J. Cox claim (/175/4).
30 Joseph Knott claim (/32/9).
31 Thomas Stewart claim (/168/21).
32 Joseph MacDonagh to Department of Finance, 8 Jan. 1921 and 18 Jan. 1921 (NAI: DÉ 2/261).
33 Anglo–Celt, 18 Sep. 1920.
34 Impartial Reporter, 11 Aug. 1921; 15 Sep. 1921; 6 Oct. 1921.
35 Impartial Reporter, 11 Aug. 1921.
36 Dooley, ‘From the Belfast boycott to the Boundary Commission’; Terence Dooley, ‘Monaghan Protestants in a time of crisis, 1919–22’, in R. V. Comerford, et al. (eds.), Religion, conflict and coexistence in Ireland: essays presented to Monsignor Patrick Corish (Dublin, 1990).
37 Monthly Report, Monaghan Brigade, Feb. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/39).
38 ‘Labour Department Report’, c.Jul. 1921 (MAI: A/0602).
39 Dooley, ‘Monaghan Protestants in a time of crisis’, p. 247.
40 Monthly Report, Monaghan Brigade, Apr. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/39).
41 Anglo–Celt, 26 Mar. 1921.
42 See for examples, Anglo–Celt, 21 May 1921, 28 May 1921, 2 Jun. 1921.
43 Joseph MacDonagh to Department of Finance, 8 Jan. 1921 and 18 Jan. 1921 (NAI: DÉ 2/261).
44 Dooley, ‘From the Belfast boycott to the Boundary Commission’, p. 90.
45 ‘Monthly Diary of Activities’, North Roscommon, c. June 1921 (NLI: MS 33,913(5)).
46 MCRs, CI, Queen’s County, Apr. 1921 (TNA: CO 904/115).
47 ‘Labour Department Report’, c. Jul. 1921 (MAI: A/0602).
48 The Weekly Summary, 12 Nov. 1920. The reproduction of a report from the Irish Independent is entitled ‘Edict Made Ridiculous’.
49 Patrick Brennan, S.C., to Mulcahy, 12 Dec. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/35).
50 The figure for Cork is given in some BMH accounts that mention the levy. Edward Young claims that in the case of shopkeepers and others the amount was based on what they thought they could get (WS 1402). Jim Hunt mentions 6d. in the pound in Sligo (WS 905).
51 The RIC in Monaghan reported that £10 was requested in parishes there while people in Roscommon were ‘intimidated into paying a tax of £1 towards the upkeep of the I.R.A.’: MCRs, CIs, Monaghan and Roscommon, Jan. 1920 (TNA: CO 904/114); Seán Gibbons ‘would not take less than £10’ in Mayo (BMH WS 927); Vice OC, Cork No. 1 to OC, Cork No. 1, 26 Nov. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/27).
52 The Weekly Summary, 19 Nov. 1920.
53 General Order No. 15 (New Series), 1920, 3 Dec. 1920 (NLI: MS 739). Seamus Robinson claimed he suggested the levy to GHQ to ‘spread the burden’ of feeding and housing Volunteers (BMH WS 1721).
54 Luke Duffy (UCDA: P17b/107); BMH WS 1105 (Thomas McInerney).
55 BMH WS 1323 (Martin Needham).
56 See, for example, BMH WS 693 (Patrick Maguire); BMH WS 1327 (Patrick O’Donnell); BMH WS 853 (Peadar Barry); BMH WS 458 (Seán Corr).
57 BMH WS 1483 (Charles McGinley).
58 BMH WS 890 (Edward Fullerton); BMH WS 681 (Thomas Carragher).
59 MCRs, IG, Jul. 1920 (TNA: CO 904/115).
60 BMH WS 1479 (Seán Healy). In Waterford, Moses Roche (BMH WS 1129) made a similar claim: ‘I cannot state with truth that this levy was paid up in every case without protest; indeed it became necessary at times to threaten certain people … but under threat, they paid.’
61 BMH WS 1317 (Cornelius Calnan); BMH WS 1318 (Denis Murphy). They were members of the Cork No. 3 and 2 columns respectively.
62 BMH WS 1738 (Jeremiah Deasy).
63 See, for example, BMH WS 603 (Stephen O’Brien); BMH WS 1563 (Michael Dineen); BMH 1595 (Seamus Babington); BMH WS 1738 (Jeremiah Deasy).
64 Kevin O’Higgins to MD, 13 Jun. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/20).
65 W. H. Smyth claim (TNA: CO 762/36/18).
66 General Order No. 15 (New Series), 3 Dec. 1920 (NLI: MS 739).
67 CS to OC Cork No. 3 (UCDA: P7/A/20).
68 CS to OC 1st Southern Division, 9 Jul. 1921 (/20).
69 J. S. Callister, Ballinamore, County Leitrim to Griffith, c. Nov. 1920; AG to OC Leitrim Brigade, 9 Nov. 1920, captured IRA documents (TNA: CO 904/168/1).
70 Jeremiah Keane to ‘ned’, 30 Sep. 1928 (NLI: MS 31,325).
71 Quoted in Mitchell, Revolutionary government in Ireland, p. 63.
72 BMH WS 692 (James Quigley). For similar comments, see BMH WS 1288 (Michael Gleeson); BMH WS 1279 (Sean Clifford); BMH 659 (Justin A. McCarthy); BMH WS 1659 (Mortimer Curtin).
73 MCRs, CIs, Kerry, Mayo, Cork W.R., Sep.–Dec. 1919 (TNA: CO 904/110).
74 Sir Ormonde Winter, Winter’s tale: an autobiography (London, 1955), p. 299.
75 Mitchell, Revolutionary government in Ireland, p. 63.
76 Winter, Winter’s tale, pp. 299–300.
77 ‘Brigade Military Court of Enquiry, West Clare’, Kilkee, 21 Sep. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/34).
78 J. J. Keane, Kilkee to Liaison Officer, 22 Sep. 1921 (/34).
79 BMH WS 809 (David Conroy).
80 J. J. Keane to T. Murphy, 18 Oct. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/34).
81 O/C Police, West Clare to O/C Police, 23 Sep. 1921; MD to CS, 15 Nov. 1921 (/34).
82 Michael Brennan to OC 1st Western Division, 22 Nov. 1921 (/34).
83 MCRs, CI, Clare, Jun. 1918 (TNA: CO 904/106); BMH WS 474 (Liam Haugh); Fitzpatrick, Politics and Irish life, p. 151.
84 BMH WS 474 (Liam Haugh).
85 J. J. Keane to MHA, 30 Sep. 1921; ‘Brigade Military Court of Enquiry, West Clare’, 21 Sep. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/34).
86 MCRs, IG, Oct. 1921 (TNA: CO 904/116); Breaches of the Truce, Clare (/151).
87 J. J. Keane to Stack, 30 Sep. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/34).
88 Quoted in Murphy, The year of disappearances, p. 83.
89 Quoted in Clark, Everyday violence, p. 160.
90 Kalyvas, The logic of violence in civil war, pp. 111–14.
91 John Darby, Intimidation and the control of conflict in Northern Ireland (New York, 1986), pp. 96–8.
92 Statement by Vice-Commandant, Cork No. 1, Nov. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/27).
93 Philip Lee to Arthur Griffith, 26 Aug. 1921; Hugh Maguire to Chief of Police, 3 Sep. 1921 (/35).
94 Kate Fehilly to Michael Collins, 10 Jan. 1922; Statement by Vice Comdt 2nd Batt Cork No. 3 Bde regarding Mr Fehilly; Statement by Vice Comdt 2nd Batt Cork No. 3 Brigade; Adjutant, Cork No. 3 to Adjutant, 1st Southern Division, 10 Feb. 1922; Adjutant, 1st Southern Division to Adjutant General, 15 Feb. 1922 (MAI: A/0659).
96 For the origins and work of the IGC and its predecessors, see Brennan, ‘Compensating southern-Irish loyalists’; Niamh Brennan, ‘A political minefield: southern Irish loyalists, the Irish Grants Committee and the British government, 1922–31’, Irish Historical Studies, Vol. 30, No. 119 (May 1997); McDowell, Crisis and decline, pp. 130–62; Clark, Everyday violence, pp. 18–53.
97 Figures are calculated from returns in ‘Population (Ireland): census returns, 1911’, Table XIX, Occupations, Cavan (HCPP: Cmd. 6051, Vol. CXVI.1, pp. 58–68).
98 Eunan O’Halpin, ‘Problematic killing during the war of independence and its aftermath: civilian spies and informers’, in James Kelly and Mary Ann Lyons (eds.), Death and dying in Ireland, Britain and Europe: historical perspectives (Dublin, 2013), p. 328.
99 Anglo–Celt,7 May 1921; MCRs, CI, Longford, May 1921 (TNA: CO 904/115); BMH WS 440 (Seamus Conway); BMH WS 496 (Francis Davis); BMH WS 396 (Sean Sexton); BMH WS 436 (James McKeown); Richard Abbott, Police casualties in Ireland, 1919–1922 (Cork, 2000), pp. 227–8.
100 MCRs, CI, Cavan Feb. 1921 (TNA: CO 904/114).
101 See, for example, report of fifteen police fired at returning from a fair at Gowna, 5 May 1921 (TNA: CO 904/150).
102 Anglo–Celt, 28 Jan. 1922.
103 William Irwin claim (TNA: IGC CO 762/174/4); William Henry Carleton claim (78/6). Hereafter, IGC claims will be referenced by their box and file number, as with Carleton above.
104 James Black claim (172/13).
105 Tim Bowman, Carson’s army: the Ulster Volunteer Force, 1910–22 (Manchester, 2007), p. 197.
106 MCRs, CI, Cavan, Dec. 1920, Jan. 1921 (TNA: CO 904/113, 114).
107 Irish Times, 5 Oct. 1920.
108 James Black claim (172/13).
109 Fitzpatrick, Descedancy, p. 244.
110 Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, pp. 43–4; some adult males left Arva to join the USC in Fermanagh, see Charles Woods claim (74/9) and James Black claim (172/13); for references to the UVF in Cavan, see MCRs, CI, Cavan, Dec. 1920 (TNA: CO 904/113) and Meath Chronicle, 9 Apr. 1921.
111 Jennie Elliott, George Cartwright, James McCabe, William Carleton, George Hill, and James and Harriet Johnston (who submitted a joint claim). Department of Finance compensation claims, Shaw Commission (NAI: FIN/COMP/SHAW/381/1-460); Department of Finance compensation claims, post-Truce, Cavan (NAI: FIN/COMP/A381/1(2)-A381/412(2)); Compensation (Ireland) Commission Register of Claimants, Cavan (TNA: CO 905/1).
112 Anglo–Celt, 15 Apr. 1922. Cartwright’s wife told the IGC that the case had been defended in court in 1924 and compensation reduced to £879 and again reopened in 1925 with a further reduction to £600: George Cartwright claim (TNA: CO 762/98/1).
113 Anglo–Celt, 28 Jan. 1922.
114 Brennan, ‘A political minefield’, p. 416.
115 John Lang claim (186/6); James Young claim (175/22); William Irwin claim (174/4); James Black claim (172/3).
116 James McCabe claim (29/13); Harriet Johnston claim (103/2).
117 Thomas Smith claim (NAI: FIN/COMP/SHAW/381/435) and Thomas H. Smith claim (TNA: CO 762/21/10); O’Donnell Brothers claim (63/2). A claim by the O’Donnell Brothers is listed in the Compensation (Ireland) Commission Register of Claimants, Cavan (TNA: CO 905/1) but no corresponding file exists.
118 William Pinkerton (TNA: CO 762/183/19), husband of claimant Katie Pinkerton, submitted a letter to the IGC describing his loss of employment having been forced to leave his job at the local mill where he was the only Protestant but did not submit his claim in time and is not included in the sample.
119 John Scott claim (175/17).
120 Mary Sheridan claim (51/9).
121 James Johnston claim (41/4); George Cartwright claim (98/1); George Cartwright claim (NAI: FIN/COMP/A381/30(2)). Martha Jackson claimed that she had housed the Cartwrights ‘at great risk of life’: (TNA: CO 904/175/11); William Carleton claim (78/6); William Carleton claim (NAI: FIN/COMP/A381/336(2)).
122 George Jackson claim (TNA: CO 762/175/12).
123 Martha Jackson claim (175/11).
124 Charles Woods claim (74/9). Woods claimed that another man was also kidnapped on the same night and later died in a lunatic asylum, but no related claim seems to have been submitted to the IGC.
125 Thomas Johnston claim (169/6).
126 Anglo–Celt, 15 Apr. 1922.
127 See, for example, Lizzie Anderson claim (TNA: CO 762/174/30); Mary Anne Curtis claim (170/4); John Lang claim (186/6).
128 Adjutant, West Cavan Brigade to Divisional Adjutant, 1st Midland Division, 24 Oct. 1921 (MAI: A/0678).
129 William John McCaughey to IGC, 20 Sep. 1928 in Richard Kemp claim (TNA: CO 762/187/10).
130 The most dominant example concerns the victims of the ‘Bandon Valley massacre’ in April 1922. For recent scholarship, see Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, pp. 221–9, Barry Keane, Massacre in West Cork: the Dunmanway and Ballygroman killings (Cork, 2014), John M. Regan, ‘The “Bandon Valley massacre” as a historical problem’, History, Vol. 97 (2012), pp. 70–98. For Peter Hart’s description of the killings, the work that has prompted the literature above, see Hart, The I.R.A. and its enemies, pp. 273–92.
131 Michael J. Culley claim (TNA: CO 762/171/12).
132 William Jackson claim (/175/13); Martha Jackson claim (/175/11); George Jackson (/175/12).
133 Maggie Masterson claim (175/16); James McCabe claim (29/13); William Scott claim (170/13).
134 IGC Report of Committee, Nov. 1930 (TNA: CO 762/212).
135 McDowell, Crisis and decline, p. 87.
136 IGC Report of Committee, Nov. 1930 (TNA: CO 762/212).
137 William Alcorn MacDougall (1868–1943) was, unusually, educated at the Royal University of Ireland and Trinity College Dublin. He was ordained in 1893 and had been a curate in Donegal and the incumbent in parishes in Leitrim and Cavan before appointment to Arva. In 1934, he became canon of Drumleas.
138 Simon Henry Hewitt claim (/196/13).
139 Richard Hewitt claim (/168/12).
140 Brennan, ‘A political minefield’, p. 416.
141 Some 2,237 of 4,032 claims had grants recommended, 895 were rejected as they were outside the scope of the committee, and a relatively small number were considered bogus: IGC Report of Committee, Nov. 1930 (TNA: CO, 762/212).
142 ‘Claims of Irish Loyalists (Report on Cabinet Committee)’, Dec. 1927 (TNA: DO 117/82).
143 IGC Report of Committee, Nov. 1930 (TNA: CO 904/212).
144 Garda Thomas Cassidy to Superintendent, Cavan, 5 Aug. 1923 and report for Office of Public Works by inspecting officer in George Cartwright claim (NAI: FIN/COMP/A381/30(2)).
145 Miriam Moffitt, ‘Protestant tenant farmers and the Land League in north Connacht’, in Carla King and Robert McNamara (eds.), The west of Ireland: new perspectives on the nineteenth century (Dublin, 2011), pp. 108–9.
146 Major A. Reid Jamieson in Charles Woods claim (TNA: CO 762/74/9). For claims influenced by MacDougall’s evidence, see, for example, Johnston Hewitt claim (168/11); William Scott claim (170/13); John Scott claim (175/17); James McCabe claim (/29/13).
147 Revd W. A. MacDougall to IGC, 16 May 1927 in Peter McBrien claim (58/13).
148 MacDougall to IGC, 6 Sep. 1928 in Johnston Hewitt claim (168/11).
149 Ellen Reilly claim (54/2).
150 Clark, Everyday violence, p. 26.
151 William Reid to IGC, 1927 in Michael J. Culley claim (171/12).
152 John Scott claim (175/17).
153 Major I. H. G. White to Major Jamieson, 17 Apr. 1928 in Maggie Masterson claim (175/16).
154 Maggie Masterson claim (175/16).
155 Jennie Elliott claim (168/19); Anglo–Celt, 28 Jan. 1922.
156 MacDougall to IGC, 9 Jul. 1928 in William Scott claim (TNA: CO 762/170/13).
157 David Fitzpatrick, ‘Historians and the commemoration of Irish conflicts, 1912–23’, in John Horne and Edward Madigan (eds.), Towards commemoration: Ireland in war and revolution, 1912–1923 (Dublin, 2013), p. 128.
158 Figure is derived from a search of the digitised Ulster Covenant signatures for Arva and the surrounding areas (PRONI: online) (accessed Apr. 2015). One of the non-covenanters (Wilson Johnston) was under the prescribed minimum age of sixteen for signatories. For a discussion of the ambiguous commitments covenanters believed they were making, see Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, pp. 118–21.
159 Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, p. 243.
160 Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, p. 107.
161 Kalyvas, The logic of violence in civil war, p. 104.
162 Augusteijn, From public defiance to guerrilla warfare, pp. 312–34.
163 John McGovern claim (TNA: CO 762/109/6); John C. Beresford claim (/144/1); John O’Donoghue claim (/27/13).
164 Thomas Moran claim (/9/6).