The Truce that came into effect on 11 July 1921 officially ended what is now most often referred to as the War of Independence and came as the culmination of the most violent six months of the war.1 Relieved civilians celebrated the arrival of peace and Volunteers returned home to bask in newfound freedom, safety, and adulation.2 Violence did not come to a complete stop at 12 p.m. on 11 July but the weeks following the ceasefire are notable for the relative absence of political violence. Total attacks against the RIC, their families and suppliers, for instance, remained in single figures for the remainder of June with no attacks at all reported in August.3 RIC county inspectors reflected positively on conditions in their counties and the British administration remained confident that both IRA and Crown forces would obey the terms of the Truce; early breaches were considered unimportant and unreflective.4 Over time patience wore thin as non-violent breaches became the norm and the RIC were increasingly frustrated by restrictions imposed by the Truce and their inability to interfere effectively. The liaison system, whereby liaison officials were appointed on both sides to enquire into breaches of the Truce, only seemed to generate further irritation. Conflicting evidence, denials, and counter-accusations made it difficult for either side to settle complaints adequately.5 Dan Breen insisted that ‘as time went on the Black and Tans were guilty of many breaches’ while police reports in August began to suggest that it was the IRA who were not, or had never been, obeying Truce terms.6 Any settlement, they believed, would come at the behest of the gunmen.7
This chapter will explore the twelve months between the Truce and the Civil War under three headings. The first section will treat non-lethal IRA breaches of Truce regulations. The second will focus on the labelling of civilians as suspicious by local IRA intelligence. Primarily using a substantial collection of intelligence notes, it will profile the ‘suspects’, explore what brought them to the attention of the IRA, and suggest some patterns in the ways in which the IRA’s defined civilians as enemies. The third section will take a broader approach to civilian defiance and IRA punishment by dealing with two specific groups that did not naturally fit into the accepted nationalist or republican standard: first, Protestants and loyalists and, secondly, the disbanded members of the RIC and their families.
The IRA and breaches of the Truce
IRA officers believed a renewal of war was likely and throughout the Truce period preparations were made for training and reorganisation in advance of a return to violence.8 Republicans were also conscious of the future of their counter-state and wished to ensure its survival by carrying out its activities and enforcing its decrees. As David Fitzpatrick has noted, ‘The immediate effect of the Truce upon the Republican courts was to increase, revive and strengthen them’.9 The IRA continued to coerce unwilling litigants, jurors, and witnesses, and punish perceived defiance. IRA units in Sligo, Mayo, and Cork took their lead from a September 1921 Dáil home affairs memorandum and issued warnings that those taking any part in proceedings of an ‘enemy Court’ would be deemed guilty of assisting the enemy and ‘dealt with accordingly’.10 In November, Sir Hamar Greenwood described the kidnapping of prospective participants in British courts as ‘the most serious menace to the truce’.11 The IRA and its weaker auxiliary, the Irish Republican Police, similarly endeavoured to outdo the RIC in dealing with minor offences and petty crime. Crowds in Dundalk, County Louth goaded police with taunts of ‘you are no longer functioning’ and ‘the I.R.A. police are doing duty now’.12
Offenders were most commonly detained for a period at an ‘unknown destination’ and frequently fined but occasionally subjected to public punishment, a spectacle that simultaneously acted as a reminder of the control and reach of the IRA. For example, three men tied to a church railing before early mass in Kilsaran, County Louth were branded with a sign that proclaimed ‘Robbers and spies of Kilsaran Parish Beware I.R.A.’13 In a bid to enforce a moral as well as a legal code, illicit poitín distilling was suppressed and new licensing laws enforced.14 This prohibition generated hostility among previously supportive or indifferent distillers and publicans. A local RIC sergeant in Queen’s County speculated that a half-day holiday notice served on publicans would ‘go a long way to split up Sinn Fein. 95% of the publicans are Sinn Feiners so long as it did not financially affect them, but now when their income is tampered with it’s a different matter’.15
The enforcement of law and order in local communities became more complex when members of the IRA were among the perpetrators of crime. Seán Moylan later reflected that the Truce period allowed young men with guns to pose as ‘war hardened soldiers. In public houses, at dance halls, on the road in “commandeered” motor cars, they pushed the ordinary decent civilian aside and earned for the I.R.A. a reputation for bullying, insobriety and dishonesty that sapped public confidence’.16 For those concerned with both the political situation and the reputation of the IRA, this was of grave concern. When six Volunteers and ‘would-be Republicans’ were accused of ‘carrying on with a local woman, a noted loose-character’, the OC of the 5th Northern Division, Dan Hogan, reported that ‘it was necessary that strong action be taken by us or else it would be believed that we allowed such occurrences at our functions’.17 Ordinary crime was rampant but it was offences committed by Volunteers that caused the most anxiety. A complainant from County Kerry insisted that ‘poaching is a small matter, but that Volunteers should poach is not a small matter, as the example it sets to neer-do-wells existent in every country is bad’.18
Most breaches of the Truce were non-violent and, individually, unimportant to all except their victims. Cumulatively they define the interaction between civilians and the IRA after the Truce. The commandeering of bicycles and motor cars, for example, generated significant grumbling and disquiet. Todd Andrews admitted in his memoir that when ‘a motor car was required for any purpose, there was no scruple in requisitioning the nearest at hand. In general we treated the population with little consideration’.19 Self-proclaimed southern Irish loyalists later sought compensation for stolen cars, bicycles, and traps and defined the theft as punishment for their loyalty.20 But others professing nationalist sympathies felt similarly aggrieved by the comman-deering of their property. In Cork, Jeremiah O’Sullivan protested that ‘Every body else got their Bicycles back alright so there must be some thing else behind the scenes. I have supported the national cause and endeavoured to do the best I could along with having to rear a young family with very little help. I didn’t expect this knock from the Source it came’.21 Dominick Foran insisted that he was ‘always willing to oblige and contribute to the cause when demanded’ but felt he had been unjustly treated by the IRA men who took his bicycle as ‘I needed my bicycle urgently on several occasions’.22 The behaviour of those who took part in the commandeering caused additional resentment. The owner of a commandeered bicycle in Kerry asked if it was ‘a chivalrous act on the part of any man to put a revolver up to an old woman (my mother) & frighten her out of her wits?’ while another who wrote on behalf of several neighbours noted, with more than a hint of sarcasm, that ‘If it is the Roscommon Brigade rules or Dail Éireann laws to come at midnight and take away by force a bicycle … and hold them over for their own use in Peace days We as Irishmen fully comply.’23 Unfulfilled promises that bicycles or motor cars would be returned within a few days, the belief that cars had been used simply for ‘joy-riding’, and unsatisfactory explanations about IRA policy resulted in accusations of unfair treatment or partiality from civilians.24
Similarly, the collection of levies generated dissent between civilians and the local IRA. The Crown forces reported that collections had ‘raised such a lot of ill-feeling amongst all classes in Co. Clare (Sinn Feiners included), that they discontinued the practice’ and Richard Mulcahy recognised that local collections were ‘simply irritating people’.25 Irritation manifested itself in a deluge of refusals to pay and complaints to senior republican officials and the IRA hierarchy.26 Under the terms of the Truce, only voluntary collections were permitted but it seems that a choice was rarely given. The OC of the Cork No. 1 Brigade, for instance, reported that he had given authority ‘for levying by force where a refusal met collectors’.27 Refusal was also met by increased fines, the commandeering of livestock, or in more extreme cases the burning of property.28 Those in charge of collections usually had little sympathy for those it was believed could afford what was being asked. Frank Barrett, OC of the Mid-Clare Brigade, argued that a levy demanded ‘in a proper manner … from every householder in accordance with his or her means’ was necessary as ‘people with the most means who paid £20 to this levy would only give on average 5/- if we left them to themselves. The people in the towns did absolutely nil in the war and it is only right that they be asked to do their bit’.29 Dáil official Diarmuid O’Hegarty agreed that there was ‘no doubt a lot of truth in what the O.C. says regarding people who want a Republic but are not prepared to give anything for it’, while Liam Lynch, commander of the 1st Southern Division, wrote of ‘a peace at any price group of shoneens … who put a few pounds before the Nation’s honour and Freedom’.30 A battalion commandant in Waterford instructed one of his company captains that ‘There are certain people who can afford [to pay] … Don’t let those people off’, but also acknowledged those less able to contribute: ‘If you think that the people are not able to bear any more taxes don’t go over the poorer areas’.31
Fundraising, as Charles Townshend has recognised, ‘came under sharper public scrutiny and criticism’ during the Truce.32 GHQ was anxious that ‘collections must be collections pure and simple, and neither loans nor extortions’ and some prominent loyalists who complained were instructed by Mulcahy, or minister for defence, Cathal Brugha, not to pay.33 In October, ‘Weekly Memorandum No. 16’ was distributed forbidding compulsory collections and calling on supervision to be exercised to ensure that ‘no attempt is made to force by threats or otherwise people to subscribe to our funds’.34 The order was less effective than anticipated and within three weeks a ‘Special Memorandum’ was issued again to ‘make it clear that levies in whatever form must be stopped absolutely’.35 The reminder only added to the confusion. Liam Lynch immediately complained to Mulcahy that ‘some Brigades have already received requests to return collections’ and prompted a discussion in the ministry about the status of money collected before the Truce.36 By February 1922, liaison official Éamonn Duggan had been ‘inundated with requests from people of South Tipperary regarding a levy, which is being forced upon them by the local Bde’.37 At the same time, GHQ, divisional commandants, and brigade commanders remained unable to exercise full control over their subordinates. The Waterford Brigade’s publicity officer was immediately suspended for publishing a memo confirming that funds would be raised by levy but a letter was received on Christmas Eve warning a local that ‘You have not so far, subscribed anything in connection with the Levy which has been gathered from friendly and hostile alike. The amount which we think you ought to pay is £10.0.0.’38 The decision to use force to collect levies was largely based by this time on how local Volunteers believed the public would respond based on their record during the war. In Clare, where the RIC had already reported a turning of the population against forced collections, the deputy chief of staff recommended that a collection be taken up ‘but that no force was to be resorted to in making the collection’. In south-west Galway, the absence of force presented a problem: ‘The finance of the Brigade is anything but satisfactory. There has been no levy in the Brigade during the War. Money was raised by appeal or Voluntary subscription. The Brigade is at present making a collection … but it is more in the nature of an appeal than a levy.’39
In many ways, the problems surrounding the levy are indicative of the unusual atmosphere of the Truce. The IRA hierarchy were caught between the need to maintain the outward appearance of the army in light of the ongoing political situation and the need to raise much needed funds. The priority of local commanders was often firmly on the latter. At the same time, civilians continued to refuse to pay levies for a variety of reasons. Sara Malcolmson told Volunteers collecting for the arms fund that ‘it was against my conscience to give them money for any such purpose’; a Mrs Keane in Athlone, County Westmeath, ‘would not subscribe to murderers’.40 Edmund Griffin, discussed in Chapter 3, refused to pay a £4 levy because he felt the amount asked was unfair.41 Sydney Jackson, a self-confessed loyalist, enquired if a levy on him was legitimate: ‘if it is, of course I will pay … I now intend to do all in my power to make our new Government a success, to ensure the property of our Country.’42
identifying civilian spies after the Truce
In The I.R.A. and its enemies, Peter Hart recreated a picture of revolutionary Cork where the IRA, on the run and in fear of its safety and survival, sought out and found its enemies based on suspicion, prejudice, paranoia, and personal jealousy. Hart argued that the Cork IRA inflicted lethal violence on perceived civilian deviants because of who they were – Protestants, tramps, sexual deviants, and other social outcasts – rather than what they did.43 While Hart’s conclusions about motivation for the execution of civilians remains most relevant to Cork, and victimisation was often more nuanced than some of his more dramatic sound-bites would allow, there is much of value in Hart’s depiction of the process by which civilians could fall under suspicion. Attempting to understand this process adds much to the difficult task of recreating the atmosphere in which the IRA and its communities interacted in the messy year that preceded civil war. Rather than focusing on the victims of IRA retribution, this section will re-examine the process by which civilians suspected of disloyalty were defined and labelled within local communities.
When it came to the execution of civilian ‘spies and informers’, GHQ (and the propaganda war) required reports, enquiries, and incontrovertible evidence of guilt.44 But this demand was often at the odds with the nature of local intelligence wars. One Limerick brigade commandant acknowledged that it was ‘exceedingly difficult to get any definite proof’ on civilians associating with the enemy.45 A desire to cut out potential leaks of information did not encourage patience as the risks of having an informer, or potential informer, in the locality created anxiety. Anxiety in turn fuelled rumour, hearsay, and gossip and Clare commander Michael Brennan neatly reflected the state of much of the IRA’s local intelligence when he reported some ‘notoriously bad cases of men associating with the enemy’ but admitted that ‘We have no proof of their giving information – only suspicion’.46 In this environment, previously normal behaviour became questionable and a range of formerly innocuous activities could bring one under the glare of an eager intelligence officer.
Preparing for the expected resumption of hostilities in January 1922, local battalions in Cork, Kerry, West Limerick, and Waterford were requested to submit information to 1st Southern Division headquarters on ‘all persons guilty of offences against the Nation and the Army during hostilities and to date, and of all persons suspected of having assisted the enemy during the same period’.47 The surviving forms provide personal information, a summary of alleged ‘offences’, and available evidence.48 Though they are incomplete (files do not survive for all battalions) and prospective punishments are not made clear, as a whole, the remarkable collection offers revealing insights into the process of labelling civilian deviants.
Crown forces family
Occupations have been established for 324 of the 340 suspects. Table 6.1 gives figures for five categories of occupation featured among the suspects and likely to lead to interaction with Crown forces. A direct personal or family connection to Crown service, either as ex-police, ex-servicemen, or their families is found in 71 files; 30 worked in government administration in areas directly significant to the guerrilla campaign: justice and communication, including the postal system, justice system, and military administration; a further 65 were hoteliers, publicans, or merchants who may have had regular business interaction with police or military prior to and during the war. The RIC boycott is evidence of the seriousness with which republicans viewed trading with the police and they were equally aware of the tendency of policemen and soldiers to socialise in bars and hotels: an IRA threatening letter in Tralee warned the recipient that, ‘You frequent the hotels and enjoy the company of the murderous auxiliaries’.49 Over half of the civilian suspects, then, potentially came to be perceived as dangerous or hostile for behaviour that might have been considered normal outside of a revolutionary context. Shared backgrounds and camaraderie naturally encouraged ex-policemen, ex-servicemen, and their families to socialise with serving members of the Crown forces. The police and military were also a consistent and profitable source of income for merchants, publicans, and hoteliers. Former or familial links necessitated visits to stations and barracks to collect pensions or see relatives. In Kerry, Norah Griffin, whose husband was an ex-soldier, was charged with visiting the local barracks and, despite arguing that she merely wanted to get a government grant to emigrate to Canada, was listed as a suspect.50 This is further emphasised in the ‘offences’ assigned to the suspects. Just under half (162, or 48 per cent) of the suspects were described as in some way friendly with Crown forces and for 78 of the suspects this was their only offence; having a police or military relative is an ‘offence’ on the files of six of the Kerry suspects.
To the IRA, any interaction with the Crown was unacceptable, and being ‘friendly’ enough to breed mistrust. The suspect files therefore rely heavily on hearsay and personal opinion: ‘we have no direct evidence in this case, except the evidence of suspicion’; ‘I have no actual evidence of her giving information but I am sure from what I personally know of the girl that she would have done so’; ‘The only evidence is very strong suspicion of this man’.51 One hundred and forty-two of those listed in the files were suspected of giving information to the Crown forces based on local information or misgivings about their behaviour, with 83 having this accusation listed as their sole offence. In total, 260 (76 per cent) were categorised as friendly with Crown forces, suspected of giving information, or both.52 Battalion intelligence personnel were directly asked for information on ‘persons suspected’ as well as those ‘guilty’, but the flimsy nature of much of the evidence highlights the seemingly innocuous behaviour that could bring trouble. Many of those listed may well have been informers or potentially dangerous to the guerrilla campaign, but little hard evidence is presented. In the case of the Graham siblings in Kerry, for instance, their offences were described as ‘None’, or ‘None as far as we know’. Miss Graham had decided to marry an RIC district inspector.53 In contrast, the number of what could be seen as serious offences is relatively small. Only ten were described explicitly as spies or had what the intelligence officer considered definite evidence of informing against them; two more were seen corresponding with or carrying despatches for the Crown forces; four had identified Volunteers in court or prison; four had shot at or assaulted Volunteers (two of these were during arms raids on the suspects’ homes); and a larger group of twelve were considered ‘outspoken’ against or ‘openly hostile’ to the IRA. Ten of the Cork suspects were implicated in the killing of republicans and six of the ten were linked to the deaths of the Coffey brothers, IRA Volunteers killed in February 1921, including two who fell under suspicion for leaving the area shortly afterwards.54
Of the 157 for whom religious denomination can be satisfactorily established using the 1901 and 1911 census returns, 117 (74.5 per cent) are Roman Catholic and 39 (24.8 per cent) Protestant; Cork suspect William Wood Wolfe is returned as Agnostic on his 1911 census form.55 But Table 6.1 also shows a clear regional variation. In Cork, Protestants make up 36 per cent of the available sample and in Waterford the proportion rises to 43 per cent while 17 per cent of the West Limerick and 13 per cent of the Kerry samples are Protestant. Protestants are, therefore, significantly over-represented in Cork where the non-Catholic population was only 9 per cent in 1911, and even more so in Waterford where the 1911 non-Catholic population was less than 6 per cent. Protestants are also over-represented in Kerry (3 per cent non-Catholic in 1911) and West Limerick (5 per cent non-Catholic in 1911) but the difference is far less pronounced. Again, regional variations can be seen. An additional notebook listing the names of ‘suspects’ in Tralee, County Kerry, contains 25 names and at least 15 can either be identified as Protestant or have surnames recognisable among the Tralee Protestant community.56 This is perhaps best explained by an increased wariness of Protestants based on an understanding of their traditional orientation towards loyalism and the Crown. The 39 Protestant suspects, though, are no more likely than their Roman Catholic counterparts to have had ordinary links to the Crown forces. There are only marginal differences in the number of traders, publicans, and hoteliers (21 per cent), government or military employees (13 per cent), and ex-policemen (5 per cent) and only 2 per cent of Protestants were identified as ex-soldiers. Statistically, then, Protestants were more likely than their Catholic neighbours to fall under suspicion. This does not necessarily mean that they were singled out for exceptional treatment, or the victims of a deliberately sectarian agenda, but that religion remains firmly among a number of potential contributing factors.
An official in the Dáil Ministry for Agriculture, reflecting in November 1921 on housing settlements for ex-soldiers, remarked that ‘a sharp line must be drawn between what may be termed good and bad ones’:
Several men joined the British Army some 6 or 7 years ago on the advice of their then National Leaders in a supposed fight for Irish Freedom. Later they came to know they were misled and since they left the Army many of them have done splendid work for our Government on the Civil and Military side. Those may be termed good. But there are others who are so much out of sympathy with the desires and aspirations of the majority of our people that their settlement … in parts of the country would be a menace that under no circumstances should be tolerated. Local Judgement must be the best judge of the category in which Ex-soldiers should be placed.57
In the 1st Southern Division at least, ex-servicemen were disproportionally likely to fall under suspicion in 1922. Ex-soldiers make up 14 per cent (44) of the total for whom an occupation can be established and a higher proportion of the total number of male suspects (18 per cent). The majority had been engaged in some form of unusual, erratic, or dangerous activity, often in the company of Crown forces. Though all were described as ex-soldiers or servicemen, only three had service in the British army listed as an ‘offence’. Five were said to have certainly passed on or gathered information and four more had been named by an executed ‘spy’ before their death. A further seven were suspected of informing or had discussed the Volunteers in public. In one case, an ex-soldier named Farrelly had ‘spent a few days at an IRA training camp’ and though there was no evidence to ‘show he was guilty in spying only that he was giving instructions in machine gun’, Crown forces frequented his draper’s shop, and his wife was ‘friendlier with them than there was occasion for’.58 As Jane Leonard pointed out in a 1997 essay, ‘Socializing with serving soldiers and policemen in post-War Ireland, even if only to reminisce about the Western Front, was risky.’ One ex-soldier deliberately avoided local British troops to avoid suspicion: ‘That time, if you talked to them, they’d say you were giving information or something like that. So I kept away from them.’59
The geographical spread of the suspected ex-servicemen is again enlightening. Table 6.1 illustrates that in Cork, Kerry, and West Limerick, ex-soldiers make up less than a fifth of the total number of male suspects in each county. But in Waterford, where there was a strong and sustained Redmondite tradition, 11 ex-servicemen made up almost 40 per cent of the total male suspects but only 13.5 per cent of the population in Waterford city by 1924.60 Former service in the British army was not enough on its own to bring suspicion but was one of a number of potentially influential factors. Intelligence files make clear that certain behaviour brought ex-soldiers under suspicion but, significantly, unlike the Protestants in the files, their status as ex-servicemen was recognised, noted, and they were described as such.
The IRA’s collection of intelligence after the Truce was just as likely to be influenced by petty jealousies and local rivalries as the status of the individual concerned. Hart suggested that the ‘typical informer was not someone with a cause but rather someone with a grudge, grievance, or with property to protect. Others saw an opportunity for gain or to settle old scores’.61 In June 1922, the Church of Ireland Gazette suggested that ‘a “bad national record”’ could become ‘a satisfactory cloak to cover sheer covetousness and personal dislike’.62 Civilians were both accusers and accused. IRA veterans in Cork remembered false accusations against civilians based on ‘local spite’.63 Dublin postal superintendent Peter Behan was served an order to leave the country and denied any wrongdoing, suggesting instead that ‘someone of the 300 men under him may have sent in to I.R.A. false reports about him, for some personal reasons’.64 In Kildare, a woman’s house was burned and a Dublin Castle official coyly suggested that she was ‘not quite as good as she ought to be, and that the attack on her house was really an effort on the part of the locals to vindicate public morality and rid the neighbourhood of her presence’.65
Some of the recorded suspects had been seen with large amounts of money and no discernible means of having earned it, inviting an assumption they had been paid for spying. David Lyne was seen in the company of the military and spent his days ‘knocking around Killarney has heaps of cash though no visible means of getting it’.66 Ex-soldier Ernie Davis was accused of bringing Crown forces to Liam de Róiste’s house but a row with his brother at a card game was also noted: ‘Both were betting very heavily. Ernie had a belt of money altho’ not working’.67 Excessive drinking brought similar conclusions. Alexander Moynahan had ‘a regular salary … but such salary was not sufficient to pay for his every day bout of drink. He was probably receiving money from some other source’.68 There was some basis for such assumptions. Thomas Relihan had two sons in the Volunteers and potential access to useful information, which he offered to Dublin Castle for payment via an intercepted letter. He was ‘not considered too well off as he is a spendthrift and drinks a good deal so that he might well be in difficulties for money’.69
In many ways, the IRA’s intelligence war was a product of the communities in which it was conducted. Observed behaviour, intercepted documents, and detective work were important aspects of the process, but the kind of personal knowledge generated in a community setting also played its own part. In many of the suspect files personal traits or labels that would have been well known in an everyday context were produced as evidence of suspicion. Protestants and ex-soldiers would have been known as such outside of war and were known as such afterwards. Those who were eccentric, flashed their money, or drank too much were similarly recognisable and the likely subjects of hushed and disapproving gossip in any setting. In a revolutionary context, and in a period of political and social instability, this took on a new and more menacing form. Vague accusations of being ‘friendly with’, ‘associating with’, or ‘entertaining’ Crown forces appear far more commonly than any outright accusations of informing. In a search to root out dangerous civilian enemies, rumour and gossip were easier to come by than hard evidence.
Loyalists and Protestants
The defining and labelling of civilian ‘suspects’ raises broader questions about the extent to which specific minority groups were targeted by the IRA after the Truce, and the nature of the violence they suffered. In The I.R.A. and its enemies, Peter Hart argued that ‘The Truce may have put an end to the war but local vendettas lived on’.70 Much of the persecution and punishment endured by civilians at the hands of the IRA was related to perceived offences that had taken place before the Truce, while boycotts and low-level social ostracism initiated in 1920 or 1921 could carry into the Civil War and beyond. In pursuing vendettas and enacting revenge for previously unpunished defiance the IRA were no different from other bands of irregular fighters in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.71
Despite general positivity about the situation in Ireland in the immediate aftermath of the Truce, there were some concerns for the ‘loyal’ population, notably in Munster. In Clare and Limerick, it was reported that:
The loyalist views with horror the present terms, and has decided, in the event of these being accepted, to clear out of the country. They realise they will only live on the sufferance of the I.R.A. and will be bled by collectors for various funds weekly. They will only be allowed to live in the country as long as it pays the local inhabitants to keep them.72
The county inspector for Cork West Riding believed that loyalists who could afford to emigrate would do so, regardless of the result of negotiations, and official plans were made to form ‘refugee centres’.73 The IRA continued deliberately to demand food and accommodation from local loyalists and the 6th Division of the British army considered ‘the present conditions as being in some ways worse than before the truce; in those days rebels were afraid to stay in a house for more than a few hours, whereas now they stay for a week or more, (usually insisting on being given the best bed rooms.)’.74
How did Protestants view their own status as victims? The increasing lawlessness of 1921–22 certainly generated fear surrounding a potential campaign against Protestants, compounded by news of violence against Catholics in Belfast. Lord Desart, for instance, heard of ‘a general threat against Protestants by way of reprisals for happenings in Belfast’.75 Peter Hart noted that from 1919, ‘Cork Protestants watched with growing apprehension as many of their nationalist neighbours turned away from or against them’, and by 1922, ‘Hundreds were forced to seek refuge in Dublin, Belfast, or England’.76 Often, though, perception was more powerful than reality. MP William H. Davison wrote to Winston Churchill on behalf of some constituents to ‘express their anxiety as to the safety of the occupants’ of two Protestant orphanages ‘as a number of the Protestants in the neighbourhood have been compelled to fly from their homes at short notice’. It was decided that the orphans could only be transported out of Galway by the navy if ‘there is real reason to believe their lives are actually in danger’.77
Post-Truce compensation applicants to the IGC were asked, ‘Do you claim that the loss or injury described was occasioned in respect or on account of your allegiance to the Government of the United Kingdom? If so, give particulars on which you base this claim’ (part 5). While the injury must have occurred after 11 July 1921, it did not matter if the evidence of loyalty was pre- or post-Truce.78 Answers offer revealing insights into applicants’ sense of their own loyalism, and as religious denomination is not mentioned on the form any mentions of religion are significant. Among a sample of 65 non-Catholic Cavan applicants only nine mentioned their denomination. In contrast, the 13 West Cork Methodists who applied to the IGC, studied by David Fitzpatrick, were more willing to equate Protestantism with loyalty or revolutionary animosity; over half (6) used the terms ‘Protestant’ and ‘loyalist’.79 Gemma Clark, whose study of Civil War violence examines Tipperary, Limerick, and Waterford, noted that IGC claimants there ‘did not necessarily mention their religion on the compensation forms’ but she deliberately avoids tabulating claimants by denomination.80
IGC claims suggest that in districts where the non-Catholic loyalist presence was strong, but not strong enough to protect against republican incursion, loyalists who applied for compensation were less likely to associate their loss with their religion. Michael Farry’s study of Protestant IGC applicants in Sligo led him to conclude that while a ‘campaign of loyalist extermination’ was mentioned at least three times in claims, religion was not often noted in response to part 5 of the claim form. Over half of the Sligo applicants were Protestant (Sligo only had a non-Catholic population of 8.75 per cent in 1911) but tended to come from the east half of the county where ‘the non-Catholic population was significant’ while rural parts of the west, where Protestants were ‘thinly scattered’, generated no applications.81 When they did apply, Protestants living in isolated areas or as part of tiny minorities are most likely to describe their persecution as anti-Protestant. Sligo Presbyterian Jesse Hunter, living in a townland with only one neighbour in a largely Roman Catholic DED, wrote that ‘I was a well known Protestant loyalist living in a very disaffected area and because I was alone, unprotected and a supporter of British rule in Ireland these persistent outrages were committed on me’.82 Isabel O’Connor did not fit in with the majority of her neighbours on two counts: ‘I was told that because I was English & a Protestant & consequently loyal to England I was one of the lot they wished to drive out.’83
Methodists in West Cork, as distinct from their Church of Ireland neighbours, were a ‘tiny minority twice over’ and this may explain the high proportion of Methodist IGC applicants from the area who attributed their victimisation to their denomination, even if they invoked Protestantism rather than Methodism.84 Clark has argued that in small ‘Protestant enclaves’ it was possible ‘to easily identify and root out virtually the entire minority population’.85 Even if this was not, in fact, what was attempted, victims may have perceived it that way or later chosen to frame it in those terms. Claimants surrounded by a significant number of co-religionists instead tended to refer to their politics rather than their religion. Richard Kingston noted that he lived in a ‘strong Protestant locality, and so did not suffer as much as other loyalists’ in Cork; ‘I believe that all these losses were due to the fact that I was known to be loyal to the British connection’.86
Communities remained acutely aware of religion as an important part of daily life, even if they did not assign it as a single motivator for revolutionary violence. In Arva, County Cavan, for instance, boycotting was repeatedly described in religious terms. Mary Anne Curtis, a Church of Ireland Protestant, was clear that she had specifically lost all her Catholic customers.87 Simon Henry Hewitt, a shopkeeper, auctioneer, and member of the Church of Ireland, was similarly sure that 50 per cent of his customers had been Catholic prior to the imposition of a boycott against him and that ‘since July 1921 not a single Roman Catholic has patronised me, many of them having informed me that they were sorry to have to leave me, but that they had been threatened with dire penalties if they transacted business with me’.88 Painter Johnston Hewitt, his nephew and co-religionist, made an identical claim.89 Bernard Matthews’ wife insisted that ‘the I.R.A. boycotted him and all his Roman Catholic customers withdrew their trade and never returned’.90 The boycott was not considered rigidly sectarian but it was easy later on to define it in religious terms.
Loyalists and the IRA in Northern Ireland
Unlike their southern counterparts, by 1922 northern loyalists were part of a state whose government and security forces, including the Special Constabularies drawn from their own communities, made a priority of their protection. Large swathes of the six counties, the areas with strong Protestant minorities such as North Armagh, North Down, and parts of Antrim, remained virtually free of violence throughout the Truce and Civil War.91 But in areas where they formed isolated minorities, loyalists in the six counties were open to violence and intimidation and the dynamics of conflict had more in common with communities in the twenty-six counties. Melbourne Unionist Alexander Leeper assured Northern Ireland’s prime minister, Sir James Craig, that he was taking steps to make the public there aware of the need to provide funds for ‘the relief of victims of Sinn Fein savagery in Ulster’ and ‘the dependents of those who suffered for their loyalty to the Crown’.92 Craig agreed that ‘there is a great deal of distress among the loyalists in the North owing to barbarities of republican and other ill-disposed persons’. Along with loyalist ‘refugees’ from the south, ‘in parts of our own area where the loyalist population is very scattered, some of our Protestant inhabitants have been forced to leave … a large number of our population were murdered or kidnapped and a large number of houses burnt for no reason other than that the owners were loyal to their King and Country’.93 In November 1922, the Loyalist Relief Fund claimed it was providing aid to 700 ‘dependants of those of our brethren who have been done to death or otherwise deprived of sustenance by the malignity of the I.R.A.’94
Loyalists close to the border with the Irish Free State were most vulnerable as the IRA, operating in hostile territory in the six counties, could, as a civil servant put it, ‘slip across the border to make themselves safe from punishment’.95 Large-scale offensives and smaller, isolated acts of violence against the Protestant/loyalist community in the six counties, most notably during the May offensive and the so-called ‘joint-IRA offensive’ in 1922, were usually counter-productive. But the most vicious, and notorious, IRA attack on the loyalist population occurred at Altnaveigh and Lisdrumliska, South Armagh, when on 17 June 1922 six members of the small Presbyterian community were killed and over a dozen houses burned out or bombed.96 The violence in Altnaveigh was exceptional in its savagery but was more representative of northern violence than southern in its crude sectarian basis. In terms of cause and effect, some parallels can be seen with the killings in Dunmanway and the Bandon Valley in April 1922. The victims of both ‘massacres’ were Protestant but exact motives have been difficult to pin down and remain subject to ‘personal vendettas, complex emotional responses, and long standing antagonisms’.97 The immediate effect in both cases was towards fear and flight among neighbouring Protestants: ‘Since the massacre at Altnaveigh, South Armagh there has been a distinct strain of tension in Newry and many residents in that area temporarily left their homes for the Free State’.98 The Altnaveigh killings ‘did much to reignite deeply held Protestant fears’, but also had an effect on the area as a whole. Volunteer James McElhaw recalled that fear ‘was not confined to any one party or section of the community. All were afraid of what was to come next’.99
A less violent but similarly significant series of IRA raids in February 1922 resulted in the kidnapping of some 40 prominent loyalists from border communities in Fermanagh and Tyrone.100 The kidnappings also proved unsettling for nearby Protestant communities. The RUC reported that a ‘feeling of unrest pervades the Loyalists in South Down’ and in Armagh the kidnappings ‘caused grave uneasiness amongst the Loyalist population’.101 Further kidnapping raids followed in May.102 Many of the kidnapped loyalists were full or part-time paramilitaries in the Ulster Special Constabulary.103 With no equivalent organisation in the South, the USC helped to define the IRA’s military campaign in the six counties and offered an obvious and legitimate target for IRA aggression; the IRA killed 34 Specials in 1922.104 Specials were overwhelmingly Protestant but were also, crucially, armed and uniformed belligerents. For republicans grappling with the ambiguities created between sectarian conflict and the traditional war against the British, the Specials were a clear and easily defined enemy. Shortly before the Truce, the OC of the 1st Northern Division suggested that warnings be sent to all B and C (or part-time) Specials to resign and, after a specified date, ‘all men known to be still connected to these classes will be liable to be executed as spys’.105 It was possible to argue, or assume, that most loyalist civilians in the six counties were potential combatants. John McCoy, an IRA officer in Armagh, told the BMH, ‘We knew that the Unionists were all armed, some of them as members of the “B” Specials and others possibly having some of the Ulster Volunteer guns’; McCoy’s colleague in the Armagh IRA, John McGrath, had hoped his column would ‘make the Unionist civilians (if Unionists could then be classed as civilians) realize that even in their own district they were not immune from punishment for the misdeeds of their relatives serving in the “B” Specials’.106
The events at Altnaveigh, the border kidnappings, and the targeting of Specials are useful, if extreme, examples of the IRA’s tit-for-tat war against the northern state and the Protestant/loyalist majority. They also illustrate an added dimension to the conflict in Northern Ireland. The deliberate targeting of Protestants was more accepted and acceptable to republicans in the six counties. Altnaveigh could have ‘crude sectarian motives’ and its victims, at the same time, could be killed not because they were Protestant but because they were ‘perceived (correctly or incorrectly) as northern unionists’.107 Though the crimes of northern loyalists may have been, in the eyes of the IRA, national rather than theological, religion remained the most obvious and durable means of identifying and separating alleged deviants. Though their victims were Protestant, and often singled out for that very reason, it was preferable to define them by non-religious identities.108
Where the IRA was weak or non-existent, Protestants remained untouched by the conflict, but where Catholics were the majority, the IRA could impose its will on Protestant civilians. At the Meade property in Rathfriland, County Down, where ‘everyone of the tenants is a Sinn Feiner’, the estate’s agent reported that ‘the county is becoming terrorised and the sympathy of the uneducated R.C’s is with the Shinners’; ‘I have no Protestants about me now save the clerk’.109 When republicans ordered that shops be shuttered for a passing funeral, he recorded, local Protestants who ‘demurred and consulted the R.I.C.’ were told that ‘of course they were not bound to obey the order unless they liked but at the same time they suggested that it might be expedient for them to do so, otherwise they might suffer later, so it had to be done!’110 Similarly, in the Maghera district of County Londonderry, Protestants who had previously cut turf in a Catholic district had decided by June 1922 to purchase coal ‘rather than risk their lives’.111 In Strabane, County Tyrone a cinema proprietor boycotted for ‘using entertainment stamps issued by the Northern government’ found himself in a ‘dilemma’ between breaking the law and losing his business: ‘He is a good loyalist and does not want to give in to S.F. but he is a poor man, and cannot carry on’.112 While the Protestants in Maghera and the cinema owner in Strabane preferred to avoid trouble, some individuals responded differently and violence could breed obduracy as well as obedience. After Protestant Charles Part was killed and his teenage son seriously wounded in Keady, South Armagh, Part’s wife refused to leave the area and was prepared to ignore police advice that her son’s return would mean ‘certain death’.113
Despite its more pronounced sectarian divide, the conflict in Northern Ireland remained relatively restrained. The numbers killed in single incidents (which the exception of rioting in Belfast), though rightly shocking to locals, were small in the context of other ethnic conflicts. Rape and mutilation were rare. The exactions made by republicans on Protestants in Beleek and Pettigo, two disputed border towns some twelve miles apart and the scene of a major week-long confrontation with British forces, were, for instance, slight in comparison with the behaviour of Polish insurgents in Upper Silesia.114 Though much of the revolution in the six counties was unique in an all-island context, areas in which the IRA was a dominant or substantial actor had far more in common with areas south of their border than nearer neighbours where loyalists dominated.
The disbanded RIC
The disbanding of the RIC called for by the Anglo-Irish Treaty took most of the first eight months of 1922. The release was staggered and men were initially transferred from their stations to larger centres around the country to await discharge. It was August before the last members left Dublin Castle.115 The dissolution of 2,000 RIC serving in the new northern state was officially delayed until 1 June.116 As the disbanded men gradually filtered out of their camps, Ireland was ‘confronted with the problem of the release into civil life of some 13,000 men’, many without suitable qualifications, unable to support themselves or their families indefinitely and with few prospects. This problem was exacerbated by a general economic depression and by what the RIC Tribunal described as the ‘political situation in Ireland’.117 Chief Secretary Sir Hamar Greenwood, Chief of Police Henry Hugh Tudor and RIC Deputy Inspector General C. A. Walsh all expressed their concerns about the safety of disbanded men in the twenty-six counties.118 The Church of Ireland Gazette recognised the immediate plight but was more optimistic about their reception in the longer term:
We know that the majority of the Irish people at present is prejudiced against the police; more is the pity. But that will pass. The Irishman has many faults, but he knows a brave man when he sees one, and there is not an Irishman alive who does not recognise the astonishing valour of the R.I.C. … Will Ireland refuse to receive them into her fold? We cannot believe that she will be so foolish, for finer Irishmen do not exist than the members of the Royal Irish Constabulary.119
A letter writer to the final issue of the Constabulary Gazette hoped for favourable treatment from the ‘Imperial Parliament’ and ‘the Irish people’ but seemed unconvinced: ‘Things of daily occurrence paint a picture none too pleasant of the future of the old R.I.C. … There should be no delusions about our future, as all may take it for certain that, however small our pensions be, there will be no chance of other employment in this country for ex-R.I.C. men.’120
In April 1922, a ‘large number’ of disbanded men sent an open petition to Winston Churchill, then secretary of state for the colonies, for the use of empty barracks and military protection until they could board a steamboat out of Ireland:
At present we have to go out disarmed, and we are set upon and searched, our money is taken … The wanted R.I.C., when found, having been already court-martialled by the I.R.A., are dragged off and murdered at once, and many of them have also suffered unmentionable outrages … We have all been warned out of Ireland. Every county in Munster, Leinster and Connaught is placarded that all the R.I.C. are to be shot at sight if they return. Our wives and families, likewise, are being ordered to leave … A great deal of luggage has been burned and many of our comrades have already been murdered.121
Between December 1921 and June 1922, 15 police and eight ex-police were killed, 24 police and four ex-police wounded in southern Ireland and 22 police (including Specials) killed and 45 wounded in the six counties.122 By the end of 1922, 15 ex-RIC had been killed in southern Ireland that year.123 A pamphlet produced by the Representative Bodies of the RIC listed incidents resulting in the deaths of ten serving policemen, a policeman’s wife, and a retired policeman and the wounding of six others while also recording 74 non-fatal attacks on police and their families.124 For men who had been subject to months and years of violence and ostracism but lasted the course, a threatening letter could have added potency in 1922 without the sense of safety afforded by colleagues and barracks. One ex-constable reflected ruefully that ‘there was no protection for the likes of me’ and another recalled that in Monaghan ‘the regular RIC was gone, the army was gone and you had no protection’.125
The experiences of disbanded policemen emphasise that the likelihood of experiencing violence depended on the locality to which they returned. Over half of the ex-RIC men killed in 1922 were shot in Cork, Clare, and Kerry while most counties saw no lethal violence against former policemen.126 The varied and inconsistent nature of non-lethal violence further suggests community-driven persecution, no official policy, and little or no instruction from above. Individuals were targeted through a mixture of written or verbal threats, armed raids, and physical violence.127 Social ostracism could be more subtle and restrained, but equally as effective. Before he received any explicit threat or injury, Cavan native Benjamin Stafford could ‘see from the demeanour of the people in the locality that they wished to avoid him and wished to have no conversation with him … with the exception of a few of his friends’.128 Former policemen found themselves at the mercy of local suppliers and could be refused or overcharged for goods and services. Francis Ronan told the RIC Tribunal, founded to administer allowances and grants to disbanded policemen, that ‘We pay the highest price for everything, and pay ready money or starve’ while another despairing compensation claimant pointed out that ‘the feeling of the people is such that compensation granted is of little avail’.129 For those who made the decision to leave their community, the trauma of uprooting a family was compounded by difficulty securing the means of transporting their goods, with neighbours either unwilling or afraid to help. Ex-constable Patrick Durkan recalled that ‘if it was even suspected that you were an ex-policeman no person would risk his life at all to drive you’.130 Property could be stolen or destroyed while in transit and one disbanded policeman went as far as painting over the standard RIC bottle green boxes holding his property in the hope that they would be left alone.131 Public auctions were boycotted or prevented from taking place and land and property often had to be sold at a fraction of its value.132
An unidentified number of ex-policemen who feared for their safety or economic prospects quickly crossed the border into Northern Ireland. By December 1923, the RIC Tribunal reported that ‘a large number’ of the ‘men of longer service’ had ‘bought farms in Ireland, chiefly in Ulster’.133 It was only in the last six months of 1923 that ‘considerable numbers’, who had been waiting for ‘the pacification of the country’, applied for commutation of their pensions to purchase land in the Irish Free State.134 The 1,347 RIC veterans who joined the RUC up to February 1923 (including 505 Catholics) found secure employment in line with their training and experience.135 In March 1922, Sir Hamar Greenwood felt that ‘some of the members of the R.I.C. may be in danger, after disbandment, if they proceed to their homes in parts of Northern Ireland’ [emphasis added].136 The experiences of those who had served in the south and returned north or those stationed in the six counties who wished to settle into civilian life in Northern Ireland was, again, dictated by the community they hoped to re-enter.
Patrick Clarke moved to the Waterside area of Derry city and informed the RIC Tribunal he would have trouble closing his affairs in Longford ‘owing to the disturbed state of the country and especially the places I would have to pass through viz. Leitrim Sligo & Mayo’.137 Another ex-policeman in County Londonderry noticed ‘a conspiracy against ex-members of the RIC’ and hoped ‘to procure a home in a loyal and safe locality as my pension is too small to enable me to live in the city’.138 Even a very short distance could make a difference. Patrick Corr was also living on the Waterside and had secured employment in nearby Drumahoe but ‘had to give it up in a few days owing to threats received by the firm’. He had intended to move to his native Tyrone but wrote that ‘owing to the unsettled state of that part I consider it unwise to move for the present’.139 On the other hand, Tyrone was preferable to Belfast as a destination for Matthew Hyland who reluctantly left the city for Dungannon ‘owing to the extreme terror prevailing in the locality through bomb throwing into houses and shooting and looting and burning’.140 Francis Duignan wrote from Ardglass, County Down that his furniture was ‘in storage in Belfast which is in a hostile locality’ while Francis Lenden made arrangements to move from Downpatrick, County Down to Belfast but on arriving there similarly found it ‘a very dangerous place to be’.141 As late as December 1926, ex-RIC constable William Kennedy, then a clerk of markets in Ballycastle, County Antrim, received a threatening letter proclaiming: ‘we don’t want police pensioners’.142 While the six counties could be a safe haven for disbanded policemen, it was only so in the right areas.
But for every man threatened, beaten, or shunned, there were more who experienced little or no hostility in their own communities. Patrick Shea, son of a policeman stationed in Clones on disbandment, for example, was blind to any antagonism against former members: ‘The disbanded members of the Royal Irish Constabulary were not made to feel unwanted in the Irish Free State. I think we could have gone to live anywhere in the country without fear of molestation’. His family left for Newry in Northern Ireland (his mother’s birthplace) but only, Shea insisted, as they had no family ties in Clones and limited employment opportunities.143 Many found themselves employed by the new state, including 160 who joined the Garda Síochána in 1922.144 A willingness to keep one’s head down and accept the new order aided integration but usually went undocumented. Neither was all the violence directed at ex-policemen in 1922 necessarily related to their former service with the Crown and ex-policemen who wished to make a quiet life for themselves could become victims of agrarian violence or embroiled in local land disputes. Ex-Sergeant John Minihan’s house was attacked in March 1922 with windows broken and doors smashed. The local IRA confirmed that ‘Minihan’s record during the war was not bad – in fact is was more otherwise’ and Minihan himself believed that the violence did not result from his association with the Crown and ‘the real object is to get him to vacate his house’.145
The attitude of the republican hierarchy, who neither sanctioned nor condoned the persecution of ex-policemen, is probably made clear by comments in a letter from Austin Stack to a man seeking permission to return to his wife and family in Tralee, County Kerry:
I cannot see that I have anything to do with matters of the kind referred to. The case is one of thousands on which no general policy, so far as I know, has been settled. The people in various parts of country, very naturally, look upon men who served in the British force up to the last moment as having been our enemies during the war.146
When advice was given, it was based on local conditions. The department of defence was able to arrange that a number of disbanded policemen in Kells, County Meath would not be interfered with but when a Dublin Castle official enquired about two men attempting to find new accommodation in Cork, where ex-policemen had been shot and killed, he was informed by the chief liaison officer that ‘under the circumstance it would be by no means wise to ask either of these men to remain in Cork. I am sure I would be glad to help you in this respect, but I could not guarantee the safety of the Constables and their families if they choose to remain behind in Cork’.147
The record of a policeman during the conflict could determine his treatment after disbandment but this was applied somewhat arbitrarily. When Denis Harrington and Florence Donnelly, both of whom had been stationed in Patrickswell, County Limerick, moved into the Kerry No. 2 Brigade area, enquiries were made about their record. The director of intelligence reported:
Harrington was one of the old peelers who were sticking on. Patrickswell was a very quiet area and it is quite possible that he might not be so quiet, if the area were more vigorous … I would, however, recommend that he be allowed reside in Ireland … The same remarks D. Harrington would apply to Florence Donnelly.148
For others simply having been a member of the force and refusing to resign was enough. An RIC sergeant’s wife suffered a raid during which she was informed they had come to shoot him ‘because he was a servant of the Crown’.149
In some localities, disbanded policemen became easy targets and offered redemption to previously inactive IRA units. A raid on the home of a policeman in Galway prompted an IRA officer to lament that:
Attacks upon police and families of police pensioners are very widespread in the County Galway. I feel certain that if those activities were so prevalent during the period of hostilities as they are now much better results would have been obtained. I imagine that the policy in Galway now is that ‘it is never too late to learn’.150
Across Sligo, where there had been a quiet war, Michael Farry has described a ‘campaign of intimidation against ex-members of the RIC’.151 Similarly, in Cavan, where there were only nine recorded homicides up to December 1921,152 the county town’s IRA were equally energetic. On one night in May 1922, threatening raids were made on the homes of the county inspector, district inspector, and two sergeants.153 The same month it was reported that five ex-policemen in Belturbet fled the town following threats; ex-RIC and ‘Black and Tans’ in Killeshandra and elsewhere were given a few days to leave.154 The treatment of disbanded policemen in communities like those in Cavan reflected previous patterns of non-lethal victimisation. The Cavan IRA did relatively little shooting but was more aggressive in targeting police relatives with intimidation and boycotting between 1919 and 1921.155
The disbandment of the RIC left their families open to victimisation. Along with the families of married men, the terms of disbandment provided for the removal from Ireland of dependants of single men.156 A separation allowance was granted for men who felt they had to flee without their families, but when a policeman made a hasty and disorganised departure, his family bore the brunt of any raids on the family home. It also fell to wives left behind to sell up property and settle affairs, and some were threatened after their husbands had left.157 The night James Moore left Ireland a group of armed men came to the house looking for him. Finding he was not there, his wife and children were ‘threatened and ill-treated and forced to remain out in a field for several nights’. The experience resulted in a breakdown of his wife’s health from which she was considered unlikely to recover.158 The trauma of shootings, raids, and threats led to complaints of prolonged ill-health and ‘neurasthenia’ from police wives.159 The wife of one ex-policeman later died in a mental institution.160
In June 1922, Andy Cope described a ‘concerted movement for a wholesale expulsion’ of ex-policemen and their families from the country and pleaded for something to be done.161 Cope could draw on several examples of the harsh treatment of policemen, but victimisation remained localised and, while significant in its own right, did not match any of the more pessimistic predictions. When it finished its work in 1924, the RIC Tribunal had issued 1,263 replacement grants for property lost, stolen, or destroyed and 727 ‘other grants’ for ‘hardship’ (almost exclusively for widely defined ‘removal expenses’). Any man who ‘owing to fear or molestation was obliged to move his home either to another place in Ireland, or to any place outside Ireland’ was entitled to a disturbance allowance, granted as an advance subject to a liability to account for it later; the Tribunal dealt with 6,941 of these cases.
Most of the movement was internal. The Tribunal received 1,686 applications for the purpose of emigration and approved 1,568. This offers a reasonable estimate for emigration up to 1924 but must also take account of substantial (but unrecorded) overlap with 886 separation allowances awarded to married men who left home, leaving their families in Ireland.162 Kent Fedorowich suggested that the total number of ex-police emigrants may have reached 2,000 by the end of the 1920s.163 Though a significant number in its own right, maximum emigration of ex-RIC (even including those who had returned by 1927)164 remained only a small percentage of the 13,502 men who were disbanded.165 Moreover, it was the non-Irish recruits who had joined from 1920 and had little reason to remain in Ireland at the termination of their employment that were most likely to leave. Exact figures went unrecorded, but the RIC Tribunal found that the ‘large majority of the emigrants were British enlistments, i.e. ex-soldiers’ and while a ‘considerable number’ of the older, Irish members had also emigrated, ‘The bulk of the Irish members of the Royal Irish Constabulary never left Ireland’.166 While there were complaints of victimisation with regards to employment, ex-policemen also fell afoul of the same economic conditions suffered by unskilled men in 1920s Ireland and the RIC Tribunal’s report acknowledged that the men who had taken up farming ‘suffered through the severe agricultural depression in Ireland and the consequent fall in land values’.167 This was emigration not simply motivated by revolutionary terror, but by a range of personal, political, and economic factors.
The departure of others considered disloyal by the republican movement, and most notably the significant Protestant decline up to 1926, has drawn much recent interest. David Fitzpatrick’s forensic statistical analysis of Methodist demographics in West Cork has shown that the main source of decline was a failure to enrol new members, excess mortality, low fertility, and low nuptiality. The effects of any violence directed at the Protestants of West Cork were ‘fairly minor’.168 Similar work by Andy Bielenberg reinforces Fitzpatrick’s suggestion that ‘the inexorable decline of southern Protestantism was mainly self-inflicted’.169 Fitzpatrick and Bielenberg’s work follows earlier investigation into the extent of revolutionary depopulation by R. E. Kennedy, Kurt Bowen, Peter Hart, and Enda Delaney.170 By Bielenberg’s calculations, out of a total decline of 106,000 Protestants between 1911 and 1926, economic and voluntary emigration accounted for between 45,000 and 59,000, the British withdrawal for 30,000, Great War dead for 5,000, and natural increase for a negative of 10,000 leaving a residual of between 2,000 and 16,000 who could have left between 1919 and 1923 owing to revolutionary terror.171
The experiences of a Protestant community in County Cavan mirror these findings. Rural dean’s reports for the Church of Ireland community in Arva record a drop from 119 families in 1920 to 84 in 1921, a drastic decline that seems odd in light of a significant increase in attendance at Sunday services and the relatively stable enrolment and average attendance at the two Church of Ireland schools in the district.172 The 1922 report recorded 80 families and a reduced average congregation of 150 each Sunday, while school enrolment saw only a marginal fall. That year incumbents were requested, in the case of a noticeable drop in Church numbers, to speculate on its cause and rector W. A. MacDougall wrote ‘Migration’.173 In fact, the Church of Ireland community in Arva (which was the most likely to apply for compensation) was more resistant to emigration than other non-Catholic denominations. The much smaller Methodist and Presbyterian populations in the area had been reduced by over half between 1911 and 1926, while ‘Other’ denominations (4 Brethren in 1911) had been reduced by 75 per cent. The size of the community, therefore, can be seen as a significant dictator of its survival. The Church of Ireland decline in Arva was far less pronounced than in the county as a whole, while the drop in Presbyterian and Methodist numbers was significantly greater.174
The figures hint at an exodus as revolutionary violence intensified in Ireland but only a small percentage of that migration can be said with any certainty to have resulted from revolutionary terror or intimidation. A small sample of Protestant migration into Fermanagh includes 145 Protestant persons or families who left Cavan between 1920 and 1925.175 Among the eleven who left from Arva there is no record of an application for compensation with either the Compensation (Ireland) Commission, the IGC, or under the Damage to Property Acts.176 While individuals may have refrained from seeking redress for revolutionary suffering, it would be reasonable to assume that if violence and persecution had been a primary cause of the migration, then there would be some record among the compensation files.177 Only six of 86 Cavan applicants to the IGC had left the county by the time they applied for compensation in the late 1920s.178
The under-sheriff for Cavan, Travers Robert Blackley, and his wife Lucy Ida (who submitted a separate claim) had moved to London; Blackley had inflicted casualties on armed raiders at his home in April 1922 and was ‘informed by the Free State Military Authorities that it would be dangerous for him to remain in the country’.179 Joseph Benison applied from Devon, England, for destruction of property and seizure of a vacant house and farm and though he complained of mistreatment by Free State troops, did not mention being forced to leave Ireland.180 John Scott emigrated to Australia but alleged it was the destruction of his business by boycott rather than threats or physical violence that prompted his departure.181 Two had crossed the border into Northern Ireland. James Heaslip claimed he was ‘chased out’ of Cavan in July 1921 and Arthur McClean signed away his land ‘under duress’ in April 1922 having received death threats and gave an address in Belfast in 1928.182 All the remainder alleged persecution and loss but felt neither compulsion nor desire to leave. The core group of loyalist applicants in Arva, for instance, remained stable. Five had been removed or lost access to land between 1921 and 1922 but all bar one had been restored by 1924; the IGC concluded that James Johnston, who remained in the district, ‘does not appear to have made a bad deal’.183 It is possible to trace a notable Protestant decline in Arva in 1921 and 1922 but, while war and civil war are part of the broader context of that migration, the direct link to revolutionary victimhood is less obvious.
There are caveats, unrepresentative extremes, and exceptions, but, overall, the evidence suggests that civilians were targeted on neither social nor religious status exclusively, nor for purely military reasons. The reality lies somewhere in between and was subject to local conditions. Even in Ulster and the north-east, where communal boundaries were generally more firmly drawn along religious lines, there remained some fluidity. Between July 1921 and June 1922, local populations were intimidated, coerced, or defined as ‘enemy’ largely based on what they did rather than who they were, though who they were was never entirely irrelevant. The nuance between the two extremes comes with an examination of the actions that led to the definition of ‘enemy’. Contact with the Crown forces, however social and inconsequential, was the behaviour most likely to draw suspicion. It was those for whom contact with the Crown had already been a regular and natural feature of ordinary life who often remained least inclined to avoid such behaviour. Everyday actions of defiance far outnumbered military acts of defiance and these everyday acts were often motivated by factors loosely linked or unrelated to political preference. Refusing to obey Dáil edicts, to pay levies or rates, or to adhere to a boycott brought labelling, victimisation, and punishment. The Truce and slow withdrawal of the Crown forces brought opportunities to enact revenge for unpunished defiance or to settle local scores. By July 1922, it had become increasingly difficult to distinguish between military, agrarian, and opportunist crime as the country increasingly descended into chaos. In 1923, Arthur McClean, a self-proclaimed Orangeman, loyalist, and covenanter who lived on a disputed farm received a threatening letter signed ‘I.R.A. and F.S. United For one cause to free the Country from Land Grabers’.184 Any attempts to create order and place behaviour into neatly defined boxes will therefore remain unsatisfying. Instead, as this chapter has tried to do, attempts must be made to understand, as far as the documents will allow, the grey areas and the middle ground.
Away from the violence and fear most Irish citizens lived lives free of antagonism.185 Even among the alleged ‘enemies’ of the republic were those who carried on a relatively quiet existence during and after the revolution. A majority of the disbanded RIC settled quietly and happily in communities around Ireland while most southern loyalists were successfully, if sometimes grudgingly, assimilated into life in the Irish Free State.186 Economic or voluntary migration accounted for most of the non-Catholic population decline between 1911 and 1926.187 In his own community in Malahide, County Dublin, Brian Inglis described how:
the members of the old Protestant Ascendancy were so firmly established there, they could live their lives almost as they had before the Treaty of 1921 … the Treaty had been signed; there was no going back on it. So, like passengers on a ship seized by mutineers, the members of old Ascendancy families continued to behave in the way they had always behaved – as if determined to give an example to the lascars who had come up from the bilges to take over the ship, and who might otherwise disgrace themselves by panic or excess. After a few years of life in the new Irish Free State, the Unionists in Malahide found that nothing sinister was going to happen to them – that there was no need for heroics. Their social world remained stable; like a prawn in aspic it gradually began to go stale, but it did not disintegrate. All around them ‘that other Ireland’ as George Russell (A.E.) had called it, was coming into force; but they remained almost unaware of its existence.188
In 1927, William Carleton, a farmer from Arva, County Cavan, signed a letter to the IGC as ‘A Southern Loyalist’.189 Just a few years earlier he had signed correspondence relating to his Damage to Property claims as ‘a Humble Citizen of the F.S.’190 This may simply have been an attempt to play up to the bodies to which he was applying, but is also indicative of a willingness to accept the new order and suggests some success in reconciling what would appear to be conflicting identities. Carleton’s neighbour George Cartwright represented a process that many went through after independence: Lord Farnham testified that Cartwright had been ‘a most loyal and fearless supporter of British interests in this country’ before independence while a 1924 Garda report described how ‘Mr. Cartwright has been a Unionist, but since the Treaty became a supporter of the Free State.’191 Amidst the turbulence of war and revolution, it is the unaffected, the indifferent, and the apathetic, those who did not suffer, complain, or seek redress, who remain the most difficult to account for.
1 For a recent account of the political developments surrounding the Truce, see Ronan Fanning, Fatal path: British government and Irish revolution, 1919–1922 (London, 2013), pp. 247–76.
2 Farry, The aftermath of revolution, pp. 17–19; Dan Breen, My fight for Irish freedom (Dublin, 1981; 1st edn. Tralee, 1964), p. 166.
3 RIC, Weekly summaries (TNA: CO 904/150). In truth, the statistics for this activity are low from as early as May 1921 as lethal violence increased and it became more difficult and less effective to intimidate policemen. Intimidation of this kind may also have been under-reported in some areas as violence increased.
4 MCRs, IG and CIs, Jul.–Aug. 1921 (TNA: CO 904/116).
5 Charles Townshend, The republic: the fight for Irish independence (London, 2013), pp. 311–14; Liaison and Evacuation Papers (MAI: LE/4–11).
6 See, for example, MCRs, CI, Galway E.R., Aug. 1921; MCRs, CI, Westmeath, Aug. 1921(TNA: CO 904/116).
7 See, for example, MCRs, CIs Cavan and Kerry, Sep. 1921 (/116).
8 Ernie O’Malley, The singing flame (Dublin, 1992; 1st edn. 1978), p. 15; BMH WS 1763 (Daniel Breen).
9 Fitzpatrick, Politics and Irish life, p. 152; Kotsonouris, Retreat from revolution, pp. 51–60. For a description of the working of these courts at a local level following the Truce, see Farry, The aftermath of revolution, pp. 157–69.
10 Memorandum on the organisation of the courts, Sep. 1921 (NAI: DECC/11/106); Breaches of the Truce, Sligo, Cork (TNA: CO 904/154).
11 Weekly survey of the state of Ireland, week ending 17 Nov. 1921 (TNA: CAB/24/129).
12 ‘Extract from Weekly Intelligence Report, Dundalk’, December 1921 (PAL: LG/F/20/1/6).
13 Breaches of the Truce, King’s County (TNA: CO 904/153).
14 Copy of instructions from ‘Dail Eireann, Police Hdqrs’, 20 October 1921 (MAI: LE/4/15); MCRs, CI, Armagh, Oct. 1921 (TNA: CO 904/116); Breaches of the Truce, Donegal, King’s County, Queen’s County, Mayo and Sligo (CO 904/151–5); McGarry, Eoin O’Duffy, p. 52.
15 Breaches of the Truce, Queen’s County (TNA: CO 904/155).
16 BMH WS 838 (Seán Moylan).
17 Report on activities, 5th Northern Division, Aug. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/24).
18 Arthur Vincent to CS, 30 Aug. 1921 (/23).
19 C. S. Andrews, Dublin made me: an autobiography (Dublin, 2001; 1st edn. 1979), pp. 236–7.
20 See, for example, Elizabeth Johnson claim (TNA: CO 762/183/4); Vincent O’Riordan claim (/66/1).
21 Jeremiah O’Sullivan to Fintan Murphy, 28 Nov. 1921 (MAI: LE/4/2).
22 Dominick Foran to Fintan Murphy, n.d., late 1921 (BMH CD/227/21/B21).
23 Donal O Maoilmicil to Daniel Mulvihill, 30 Nov. 1921 (UCDA: P64/5(26)); T. J. O’Dowd to Fintan Murphy, 25 Aug. 1921 (MAI: BMH CD/227//21/L6).
24 See complaints received and copies of replies in Fintan Murphy Collection (MAI: BMH CD/227). See also, complains about commandeered bicycles and replies in Daniel Mulvihill Papers (UCDA: P64/5). For complaint of ‘joy-riding’ by Free State forces, see Joseph Arthur Benison claim (TNA: CO 762/14/3).
25 Extract from captured enemy document, Clare and Limerick, c. Aug. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/23); Chief of Staff to OC 1st Eastern Division, 21 Sep. 1921 (/35).
26 For examples of complaints, see Con Maloney to OC Kilkenny Brigade, 20 Sep. 1921 (UCDA: P9/53(4)); OC 2nd Southern Division to OC Kilkenny Brigade, 30 Sep. 1921 (P9/55).
27 OC Cork No. 1 to Adjutant, 1st Southern Division, 27 Nov. 1921 (P7/27).
28 Notice of fine issued in Clonmel, County Tipperary (TNA: CO 904/155); Cow taken in lieu of levy from Peter Sullivan, Edgeworthstown (MAI: LE/6); Burning of Jeremiah O’Mahoney’s home (TNA: CO 904/155). For similar incidents against loyalists, see IGC (TNA: CO 762/3–212 and SILRA (PRONI: D989/B/3/9–13).
29 OC Mid-Clare to Diarmuid O’Hegarty, 17 Sep. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/24).
30 O’Hegarty to MD, 20 Sep. 1921 (/24); OC 1st Southern Division to CS, 27 Nov. 1921 (/29).
31 OC 3rd Battalion, Waterford Brigade, to OC D Company, 11 May 1921 (MAI: BMH CD/274/1).
32 Townshend, The republic, p. 321.
33 Lord Desart to Chandull, 4 Apr. 1922 (TCD: MS 11269/2); Jasper Travers Wolfe to MD, c. Nov. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/29).
34 ‘Weekly Memorandum No. 16’, 7 Oct. 1921, (P17a/2). See also, Mulcahy to Collins, 14 Oct. 1921; Collins to Mulcahy, 15 Oct. 1921 (MAI: A/0604).
35 ‘Special Memorandum’, 25 Oct. 1921, (A/0604).
36 OC 1st Southern Division to CS, 27 Nov. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/29); Townshend, The republic, pp. 322–3.
37 Chief Liaison Officer to CS, 16 Feb. 1922 (MAI: LE/4/6). Mulcahy’s department replied that ‘I have no doubt you are inundated with such requests. Almost 100 of these have come to this Department’: CS’s office to Chief Liaison Officer, 21 Feb. 1922 (/4/6).
38 Townshend, The republic, p. 319; statement by Tomas O Maoilaigh, 5 Nov. 1921 (NLI: MS 31,207(1); Notice received by Mrs Ellen Noonan, Lismore, 24 Dec. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/36).
39 Report on 1st Western Divisional Conference and five brigades, 25 Oct. 1921 (MAI: A/0674).
40 Sara Mary Malcolmson to ‘Dail Eireann Cabinet’, 4 Oct. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/24); note by Fintan Murphy, 27 Aug. 1921 (MAI: BMH CD/227/21/A33).
41 Patrick Brennan, S.C., to Mulcahy, 12 Dec. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/35).
42 Sidney Jackson, to [Mulcahy?], 9 Dec. 1921 (/34).
43 Hart, The I.R.A. and its enemies, pp. 300–15.
44 General Orders (New Series), 1920, No. 20 ‘Spies’ (UCDA: P7/A/45).
45 OC Mid-Limerick to CS, 3 Mar. 1921 (/17).
46 Brennan to CS, c. Apr. 1921 (/17).
47 Quoted in Hart, The I.R.A. at war, p. 297.
48 I.R.A. Intelligence Reports, 1st Southern Division, 1922 (MAI: A/0879). For Hart’s analysis of the records for Cork, see The I.R.A. and its enemies, p. 304. For a more recent use of the Cork files, see Andy Bielenberg, John Borgonovo, and James S. Donnelly Jr., ‘“something in the nature of a massacre”: the Bandon Valley killings revisited’, Éire–Ireland, Vol. 49 (2014), pp. 7–59.
49 Threatening letter from ‘Headquarters, I.R.A., Tralee’, 1921 (MAI: BMH CD/280/3/3).
50 Intelligence Reports, Norah Griffin.
51 Intelligence Reports, Chrissie O’Halloran, Baby O’Shea, Edward O’Halloran.
52 Forty-four were accused on both counts.
53 Intelligence Reports, Graham.
54 For the killing of the Coffey brothers, James and Timothy, see Military enquiry in lieu of inquest (TNA: WO 35/147A/84); Irish Independent, 15 Feb. 1921.
55 Intelligence Reports (MAI: Collins Papers, A/0897); 1911 census returns (census.nationalarchives.ie) (Apr. 2015). Protestant suspects are made up of Church of Ireland, Church of England, Methodist, Presbyterian, and Wesleyan.
56 IRA Intelligence Notebook (KCL: P34/1/3.5). I am grateful to Professor Eunan O’Halpin and Dr Eve Morrison for alerting me to this source and to Dr Morrison for sharing her analysis of the names contained in the notebook.
57 Art O Conaibair to MD, 9 Nov. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/30).
58 Intelligence Files, Farrelly.
59 Jane Leonard, ‘Facing “the finger of scorn”: veterans’ memories of Ireland after the Great War’, in Martin Evans and Ken Lunn (eds.), War and memory in the twentieth century (Oxford, 1997), p. 63.
60 Taylor, Heroes or traitors, p. 12.
61 Hart, The I.R.A. and its enemies, p. 306.
62 Quoted in Clark, Everyday violence, p. 144.
63 Hart, The I.R.A. and its enemies, p. 299.
64 Correspondence regarding P. P. Behan (MAI: A/0604). According to an IRA intelligence officer, there was no doubt about Behan’s ‘treason to his Country’: he was guilty of handling seditious material captured by Crown forces.
65 W. Doolin to Captain A. C. McAllister, 27 Mar. 1922 (LE/4/14).
66 Intelligence Reports, David Lyne.
67 Intelligence Reports, Ernie Davis.
68 Intelligence Reports, Alexander Moynahan.
69 Intelligence Reports, Thomas Relihan.
70 Hart, The I.R.A. and its enemies, p. 111.
71 Kalyvas, The logic of violence in civil war, pp. 58–61.
72 Extract from captured enemy document, Clare and Limerick, c. Aug. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/23).
73 MCRs, CI, Cork W.R. (TNA: CO 904/116); Hart, The I.R.A. and its enemies, p. 111.
74 General Commanding 6th Division to General Headquarters, Ireland, 22 Aug. 1921 (IWM: P363); ‘6th Division Intelligence, Review of rebel activities for week ending December 3rd 1921’ (UCDA: P17a/9).
75 Lord Desart to Chandull, 4 Apr. 1922 (TCD: MS 11269/2).
76 Hart, The I.R.A. and its enemies, pp. 312–14.
77 William H. Davison to Churchill, 9 Jun. 1922; Churchill to Davison, 15 Jun. 1922 (TNA: CO 739/114).
78 Brennan, ‘A political minefield’, p. 417.
79 Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, p. 212 and n. 106.
80 Clark, Everyday violence, p. 48. Clark makes clear that her book ‘examines violence by type … and not according to the victim’s denomination’: p. 39.
81 Farry, The aftermath of revolution, p. 193. Farry does not tabulate this but does write that the religion of an applicant was only ‘sometimes given’: p. 247 n. 60.
83 Isabel O’Connor claim (TNA: CO 762/170/22).
84 Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, pp. 181, 212.
85 Clark, Everyday violence, p. 48.
86 Richard Kingston claim (CO 762/183/4).
87 Mary Anne Curtis claim (/170/4).
88 Simon Hewitt claim (/196/13).
89 Johnston Hewitt claim (/168/11).
90 Bernard Matthews claim (/23/1).
91 Lynch, The Northern IRA, pp. 41–2.
92 Alexander Leeper to James Craig, 22 Jan. 1924 (PRONI: PM/6/2).
93 Craig to Leeper, 1 Mar. 1924 (/6/2).
94 Notice of Loyalist Relief Fund Bazaar, Stormont Castle, Nov. 1922 (D1132/9/5).
95 ‘File on John Baird and Albert York, Clady, kidnapped’, 1922 (HA/5/163). See also, ‘File on cross-border raids by IRA into Northern Ireland’ (/5/189).
96 Robert Lynch, ‘Explaining the Altnaveigh massacre’, Éire–Ireland, Vol. 45 (2010), p. 184; Lewis, Frank Aiken’s war, pp. 151–63.
97 Lewis, Frank Aiken’s war, p. 157.
98 RUC Bi-Monthly Report, 17 Jun. 1922 (PRONI: HA/5/152).
99 Lewis, Frank Aiken’s war, p. 194; BMH WS 634 (James McElhaw).
100 Correspondence on kidnapped loyalists, February 1922 (PAL: LG/10/2/45–50); Capt. V. P. Shiels to Emmet Dalton, 8 Feb. 1922 (MAI: LE/6); Lynch, Northern IRA, pp. 100–5.
101 RUC Bi-Monthly Report, 15 Feb. 1922 (PRONI: HA/5/152).
102 Lynch, Northern IRA, p. 146.
103 Return of persons kidnapped from Northern Ireland, Jul. 1922 (TNA: CO 904/739/16).
104 Lynch, Northern IRA, p. 67.
105 OC, 1st Northern Division, 28 Jun. 1921 (UCDA: P7/A/21).
106 BMH WS 658 (John Grant); BMH WS 492 (John McCoy). See also, BMH WS 647 (Edward Boyle); BMH WS 829 (Charles McGleenan).
107 Lynch, ‘Altnaveigh’, p. 187; Lewis, Frank Aiken’s war, p. 157.
108 Wilson, Frontiers of violence, p. 136.
109 George Young to Mrs Meade, Suffolk, Oct. 1921 (PRONI: MIC/259/1).
110 young to Mrs Meade, 1921 (/259/1).
111 ‘Activity Report’, 2nd Northern Division, 26 Jun. 1922 (UCDA: P7/B/77).
112 E. C. Herdman to Dawson Bates, 14 Dec. 1921 (PRONI: HA/5/115).
114 Wilson, Frontiers of violence, p. 146. For the Belleek–Pettigo clash, see Lynch, Northern IRA, pp. 154–7
115 O’Sullivan, The Irish constabularies, p. 369.
116 Chris Ryder, The RUC 1922–2000: a force under fire (London, 2000; 1st edn. 1989), p. 47.
117 ‘Brief summary of the work of the Royal Irish Constabulary Tribunal’, Apr. 1928 (TNA: HO 45/13029).
118 Alfred Cope to Michael Collins, 28 Mar. 1922 (NAI: FIN 1/506); Henry Tudor to Hamar Greenwood, 5 Apr. 1922 (TNA: HO 351/95); Walsh to Assistant Under Secretary and Secretary, RIC Tribunal, 22 Apr. 1922 (/98). See also Cabinet report on the future of the RIC, Dec. 1921 (PA: LG/F/20/1/8); Correspondence relating to disbanding of RIC, 1922 (TNA: CAB 24/134).
119 Church of Ireland Gazette, 24 Feb. 1922.
120 Constabulary Gazette, 28 Jan. 1922.
121 Impartial Reporter, 27 Apr. 1922.
122 ‘Murders and attempted murders since the Treaty’, Jun. 1922 (TNA: CO 739/14).
123 Abbott, Police casualties in Ireland, pp. 293–5. Fourteen more were killed while still serving: pp. 275–91.
124 ‘Outrages committed against the R.I.C. since the Truce, July 1921’, 1922 (TNA: TS 18/237).
125 Timothy Murphy claim (TNA: CO 762/7/3); John D. Brewer, The Royal Irish Constabulary: an oral history (Belfast, 1990), p. 118.
126 Abbott, Police casualties, pp. 293–5.
127 Attacks and threats against disbanded policemen in Liaison and Evacuation Papers (MAI: LE/4–11). For examples of physical violence, see Cope to Secretary, Provisional Government, 22 Jun. 1922 (NAI: S 1842); Patrick Healy claim (TNA: CO 762/89/12); James McElwaine to RIC Tribunal (HO 351/98).
128 Benjamin Stafford claim (NAI: FIN/COMP/381/153(2)). Later, a threatening Notice and damaged property convinced Stafford to leave and not return.
129 Francis Ronan to RIC Tribunal, 20 Jul. 1922; Hugh Carty to RIC Tribunal, 9 Jun. 1922 (TNA: HO 351/98).
130 Patrick Durkan claim (CO 762/54/16).
131 Martin McLaughlin claim (/23/2); Martin McLaughlin to Lord Dunedin, 10 Nov. 1925; Martin McLaughlin to Lord Eustace Percy, 1 Dec. 1925 (TNA: CO 905/17).
132 Memorandum circulated to the Cabinet by Major A. Reid Jamieson, 1927 (TNA: CO 762/1/16).
133 Unsigned [L. N. B. Odgers?] to Sir John Anderson, 20 Dec. 1923 (TNA: HO/351/102).
134 A. F. Hemming to Sir Edward Troup, 13 Dec. 1923 (/351/102).
135 Kent Fedorowich, ‘The problems of disbandment: the Royal Irish Constabulary and imperial migration, 1919–1929’, Irish Historical Studies, Vol. 30, No. 117 (May, 1996), p. 97. See also, Brewer, Royal Irish Constabulary, pp. 117–27.
136 A. F. Hemming to Prime Minister, Northern Ireland, 25 Mar. 1922 (PRONI: CAB/6/33).
137 Patrick Begley to RIC Tribunal, 15 Jul. 1922 (TNA: HO/351/98).
138 M. Cloran to RIC Tribunal, 31 Jul. 1922 (/98).
139 Patrick Corr to RIC Tribunal, 10 Jul. 1922 (/98).
140 Matthew Hyland to RIC Tribunal, 28 Jul. 1922 (/98).
141 Francis Duignan to RIC Tribunal, 17 Jul. 1922; Francis Lenden to RIC Tribunal, 24 Jul. 1922 (/98).
142 Letter received by William Kennedy, 4 Dec. 1926 (PRONI: D2676/7).
143 Shea, Voices and the sound of drums, p. 91.
144 Taylor, Heroes or traitors, p. 88.
145 Seán Kavanagh to Emmet Dalton, 8 Mar. 1922 (MAI: LE/4/14).
146 Michael Daly claim (TNA: CO 762/126/1).
147 Department of Defence to Officer i/c Evacuation, 6 Jun. 1922 (MAI: LE/4/15); M. Loughnane to Chief Liaison Officer, 1 Apr. 1922; Chief Liaison Officer to Loughnane, 1 Apr. 1922 (LE/11/6).
148 IO Kerry No. 2 to IO 1st Southern Division, 12 May 1922; DI to IO 1st Southern Division, 6 Jun. 1922 (NLI: MS 31,212).
149 M. Loughnane, Dublin Castle to Chief Liaison Officer, 30 Mar. 1922 (MAI: LE/4/15).
150 Officer i/c Evacuation to Brennan, 12 Apr. 1922 (MAI: LE/4/10).
151 Farry, The aftermath of revolution, p. 165.
152 O’Halpin, ‘Problematic killing’, p. 328.
153 M. Loughnane to Officer i/c Evacuation, 18 May 1922 (MAI: LE/4/16); Anglo–Celt, 6 May 1922.
154 Anglo–Celt, 20 May 1922.
155 For incidents of intimidation against RIC members and their relatives in Cavan, see: Anglo–Celt, 28 Feb. 1919, 3 Apr. 1920; MCRs, CI, Cavan, Aug. 1920 (TNA: CO 904/112); BMH WS 1387 (Hugh Maguire); BMH WS 1266 (Hugh Brady).
156 ‘Removal Expenses and Maintenance of Police families compelled through intimidation to leave their residences’ (TNA: T 192/2); ‘Note on the work of the R.I.C. Tribunal’, n.d. (TNA: HO 351/97).
157 See, for example, Timothy Doona claim (CO 762/60/20).
158 James F. Moore claim (/65/24).
159 John George Donaghy claim (/55/9); Mary Butler claim (/106/11).
160 James Tarsoney claim (/164/9). Tarsoney claimed he had ignored warnings to leave his home until one night he was brought outside by armed men and shots fired over his head. He was forced to leave without his wife who became ill soon after.
161 Alfred Cope to Secretary, Provisional Government, 22 Jun. 1922 (NAI: S 1842).
162 Report of the RIC Tribunal to Secretary of State for Home Affairs, 24 Feb. 1924 (TNA: CO 762/1); L. N. B. Odgers to A. Reid Jamieson, 11 Apr. 1927 (TNA: HO 45/13580); IGC Report, Nov. 1930 (CO 762/212).
163 Report of the RIC Tribunal to Secretary of State for Home Affairs, 24 Feb. 1924 (TNA: CO 762/1); Fedorowich, ‘The problems of disbandment’, pp. 88–108. See also Kent Fedorowich, ‘Reconstruction and resettlement: the politicization of Irish migration to Australia and Canada, 1919–1929, English Historical Review, Vol. 114, No. 459 (Nov., 1999), pp. 1143–78.
164 Memorandum to Cabinet by Major A. Reid Jamieson, 1927 (TNA: CO 762/1/16).
165 Abbott, Police casualties, p. 295.
166 A. F. Hemming to Sir Edward Troup, 13 Dec. 1923 (TNA: HO 351/102).
167 Brief summary of the work of the RIC Tribunal, Mar. 1928 (TNA: HO 45/13029).
168 Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, pp. 159–80.
169 Fitzpatrick, Descendancy, p. 180.
170 Robert E. Kennedy, The Irish: emigration, marriage, and fertility (Berkeley and Los Angeles, CA, 1973); Kurt Bowen, Protestants in a Catholic state: Ireland’s privileged minority (Montreal, 1983); Hart, The I.R.A. at war; Enda Delaney, Demography, state and society: Irish migration to Britain, 1921–1971 (Liverpool, 2000).
171 Andy Bielenberg, ‘Exodus: the emigration of southern Irish Protestants during the Irish war of independence and the civil war’, Past and Present, 218 (2013), pp. 199–233.
172 Rural dean’s reports, Arva, 1919–1921 (RCB: D3/1/27, 28A, 28). In 1919, enrolment and average attendance was, respectively, 57 and 30 for the school in Arva and 36 and 20 in Bruse; 36 and 29 in Arva and 24 and 21 in Bruse in 1920; and 45 and 30 in Arva and 24 and 19 in Bruse in 1921.
173 Rural Dean’s report, Arva, 1922 (/1/29).
174 1911 census returns (census.nationalarchives.ie); Saorstát Éireann: Census of population, 1926, Vol. 3, Table 9, ‘Counties 1861–1926. Number of persons of each religion in each county and county borough in Saorstát Éireann on 18th April, 1926’; Saorstát Éireann: Census of population, 1926, Vol. 3, Table 12, ‘District Electoral Division. Number of persons of each religion in each district electoral division in saorstát Éireann on 18th April, 1926’.
175 Terence Dooley, ‘Protestant migration from the Free State to Northern Ireland, 1920–25: a private census for Co. Fermanagh’, Clogher Record, Vol. 15, No. 3 (1996), pp. 88–132.
176 Department of Finance compensation claims, Shaw Commission (NAI: FIN/COMP/SHAW 381/1–460); Department of Finance compensation claims, post-Truce (NAI: FIN/COMP/A381/1(2)-412(2)); IGC claims (CO 762/3–212); Register of Claimants, Cavan (TNA: CO 905/1).
177 Only two families recorded on the list did make applications to the IGC: Creagmile claims (CO 762/103/17–19); Robert Smith claim (/103/20).
179 Travers Robert Blackley claim (TNA: CO 762/37/6); Lucy Ida Blackley claim (/46/3). His claim suggested that he had killed three of the attackers and wounded three others, while the Irish Times (12 Apr. 1922) reported that three attackers had been ‘seriously wounded’ and one was believed dead. Those responsible do not seem to have been republicans, as the newspaper report described a ‘guard of I.R.A.’ stationed outside the house after the raid. During hearings for compensation at Cavan Quarter Sessions it was again suggested that three men had been killed by Blackley and his son: Irish Times, 9 Feb. 1924, 16 Apr. 1924.
180 Joseph Arthur Benison claim (/14/3).
181 John Scott claim (/181/6).
182 Arthur McClean claim (/183/2).
183 James Johnston claim (/41/4). Johnston’s brother had originally been allowed to buy the land for a ‘nominal’ fee and James had subsequently secured the land for the same fee.
184 Arthur McClean claim (/183/2).
185 McDowell, Crisis and decline, p. 136.
186 Leigh-Ann Coffey, ‘Loyalism in transition: southern Irish loyalists and the Irish Free State’, in James W. McAuley and Graham Spencer, Ulster loyalism after the Good Friday Agreement: history, identity and change (Basingstoke, 2011), pp. 27–35.
187 Fitzpatrick, Descendency, pp. 167–240; Andy Bielenberg, ‘Exodus’, pp. 199–233.
188 Brian Inglis, West Briton (London, 1962), pp. 12–13.
189 William Carleton claim (TNA: CO 762/78/6).
190 William Carleton claim (NAI: FIN/COMP/A381/336(2)).
191 George Cartwright claim (/A381/30(2)).