Óglach Thomas Murphy, aged 22, F Company, 6th Battalion, Dublin Brigade, Irish Republican Army (IRA).

Óglach Thomas Murphy, aged 22.

Murdered in his bed by Black and Tans at ‘The Hotel’, Foxrock Village, on this day 1921.

At the time of his death, Thomas or ‘Tommy’ Murphy, a popular young uilleann-piper, was one of a number of young men active with the local IRA company, a unit made up of men from the Deansgrange, Cornelscourt, Cabinteely and Foxrock districts. By the summer of 1921, several of it’s members had been forced ‘on the run’ and began operating as a full-time ‘flying column’, sleeping rough in stables and sheds and harassing crown forces at any opportunity that presented itself.

Attacks on the local RIC barracks at Cabinteely were numerous. In the dead of night, Volunteers, acting under cover of darkness, would make their way to the village, where they would creep along the empty streets, taking up positions before subjecting the barracks to a sustained attack using rifles and home-made bombs. Just weeks before his death, Thomas Murphy, dressed in a chauffeur’s uniform in order to give the appearance of a British officer, had driven a car at top speed past the barracks while the car’s other two occupants lobbed bombs at the Black and Tan sentries posted outside.

On May 13th, local Volunteer Charles ‘Rodney’ Murphy (no relation) of Deansgrange, scaled a tree in the Brennanstown Road area, using his elevated position overlooking the barracks to snipe at two Black and Tans tending to the gardens in the yard out back. Constable Albert Edward Skeats, a Black and Tan recruit from London, was hit behind the ear and rushed to a hospital in the city, where he lay critically ill. He eventually succumbed to his injuries on May 28th. The night after his death, a party of Tans and RIC returning to their barracks were ambushed at Monaloe cross-roads by Volunteers Jackie Nolan, John Merriman and Billy Fitzgibbon. During a brisk gunfight, one constable was wounded before the Volunteers made their escape across fields.

With one of their number dead and another now seriously injured, tensions inside Cabinteely barracks had reached boiling point. Just before three o’clock in the morning, a party of five Tans, faces blackened with shoe polish, made their way along Brennanstown Road to Foxrock, where they stopped at ‘The Hotel’, a large tenement building that once stood in the centre of the village. It was here that Volunteer Thomas Murphy resided along with his widowed mother and four sisters. As the building was home to several families, the front door was left open, enabling the Tans to make their way inside unnoticed. They then quietly made their way to Thomas’ room before bursting through his bedroom door, waking the startled man from his sleep. One of the intruders asked if he was Thomas Murphy, and when he replied that he was, a shot was fired, hitting the young man through his head, the bullet passing through the wall into the adjacent room. As the intruders left, Thomas’ mother and sisters rushed into the room to find their son in a collapsed state. Despite the best efforts of a local doctor, Thomas died where he lay several hours later.

On June 1st, Thomas’ remains were buried at Deansgrange Cemetery following a military enquiry. In a large funeral cortege, members of the Dublin and South Eastern Railway Company, where Thomas worked as a porter, marched in a body after the hearse. Numerous wreaths were placed over the coffin, which was wrapped in a tricolour flag. Thomas’ IRA comrades supplied a guard of honour and firing party. Three volleys of shots were fired as the coffin was lowered into the grave, before men and arms managed to get safely out of the cemetery through a cordon of British military.

With many thanks to: Sean Larkin, South Derry.

RSF supports Gabriel Mackle in his defence of his Republican identity.

Statement by the President of Republican Sinn Féin Des Dalton
28ú Márta/March

Republican Sinn Féin salutes Gabriel Mackle on his courageous defence of his distinct identity and autonomy as an Irish Republican POW within the Maghaberry prison. Irish Republican POWs have historically had to run the gauntlet of British and 26-County state attempts to criminalise them and deny them their identity, shamefully on this occasion this latest injustice comes at the hands of those purporting to be fellow Irish Republicans. To compound the injustice is the fact that it was the CABHAIR supported prisoners who won the right of Republican prisoners to have their separate identity accepted by the prison regime. The CABHAIR supported prisoners led the dirty protests which resulted in the August 2010 Agreement.
This attempt to deny Gabriel Mackle his own political identity and autonomy brings only shame to those who have a hand in it. By cloaking their actions in the name of Republicanism they sully that noble banner. A statement issued under the name of “Republican Prisoners, Roe 4” in Maghaberry prison by the group styling itself Saoradh is quite simply a tissue of lies and calculated smear, designed to hide what is really happening here.

In an attempt to smear Gabriel Mackle the statement cites his previous membership of the British Army’s Royal Irish Regiment. This is a matter of public record. Irish Republican history is littered with instances of Irish patriots who having served in the British Army subsequently gave honourable and heroic service to the cause of Irish freedom, James Connolly, Michael Mallin and Tom Barry are notable examples.

This statement cannot disguise the reality of what is going on in Maghaberry. Gabriel Mackle’s right, a right inherent to all Republican POWs, to maintain his own political identity is being attacked. Historically this right has always been respected by Republican prisoners regardless of organisation. However, this latest move to deny Gabriel Mackle this right echoes the actions of the Provisionals who in 1986 forced Republican prisoners who refused to renounce their Republican principles and abandon their allegiance to the All-Ireland Republic off prison landings.

Today it seems similar tactics are being employed by a grouping that it seems will not tolerate any alternative views. When these people speak of unity we now can see what they really mean. They are simply Provo – lite, aping the tactics and mindset of the Provisionals. They will be no more successful in their attempts to intimidate faithful Irish Republicans than the reformist Provos were before them.
We will not be intimidated or deflected from our work. Over the decades we have seen many such groupings styling themselves as Republican come and go. Republican Sinn Féin and the Republican Movement long predate them and will long outlast them. This year we mark 100 years since the historic 1917 Ard Fheis at which Sinn Féin adopted a Republican constitution. We are proud of our history of unbroken continuity of principle and organisation. Over the course of that century faithful Irish Republicans have defended that constitution from those who have attempted to subvert it, in 1921, 1926, 1946, 1969/70 and 1986. We will remain steadfast in our allegiance to the All-Ireland Republic of Easter and determined in our pursuit of our Republican goals. Once more we salute Gabriel Mackle and pledge him our continued solidarity and support. Maith thú Gabriel.

Críoch/Ends.

With many thanks to: Des Dalton, President Republican Sinn Féin.

Burgery Ambush on this day of Irish History 19th March 1921

On the morning of the 19th March, 1921, the startling rumour went round the town that an ambush of military had taken place at the Burgery and that there were casualties on both sides.

Rumour had it that fighting had been going on all night, and only finished when there was broad daylight in the morning. People asked one another for particulars, but only the vaguest accounts could be learned. But confirmation of the stories was in a measure made manifest when a motor car drove down the Main Street at about ten o’clock in which an auxiliary policeman was dying.

The Burgery is situated on the main road to Waterford from Dungarvan, about a mile to the north-east of the town. It is a pretty suburb, well sheltered with trees, and along the road there are good fences topped with hawthorn and privet on either side. On the evening previous to the ambush a, force of military left the Castle in a motor car and a lorry. There were about twelve soldiers in the lorry, and the motor contained Captain Thomas (in command), Lieut. Griffiths, Sergeant Hickey, of the R.I.C. and two soldiers. The destination was Clonea, on the Ballyvoile Road, the object being to make the arrest. of a man named Murphv who lived there. The party succeeded in finding the man “wanted” at home and in making the arrest. The reason for Sergeant Hickey accompanying the partv was so that he might point out the house of Murphy. Having secured Murphy, the military set out for home, but they made a detour to come back by Cloncoskraine, where some military were stationed, and with whom they wanted to make an exchange of views. Having remained for a short time at Cloncoskraine, they proceeded homewards, it being then somewhere about eleven o’clock at night. The motor car went first, followed at a little distance by the lorry containing the soldiers guarding the prisoner.

People of Dungarvan know well where the road turns off from the main road to go to Lacken or Fruit Hill. Here, behind the fence, a number of I.R.A. lay in waiting. And lest the military would take the old Cork road another party of ambushers lay there also in waiting, screened behind the fence. The motor car, coming along the main road, was allowed to pass, but when the lorry came within some yards a volley was discharged from behind the fence. The lorry stopped, the petrol tank was pierced, and the vehicle became disabled. The soldiers jumped out and ran for what cover they could. Then they opened fire and a rapid exchange of rifle shooting took place between the parties, the encounter having lasted for about ten minutes. Captain Thomas had gone on with the motor car. He pulled up on reaching the Burgery. He found the lorry was not following, and, hearing the shooting in the distance, he surmised an ambush and ordered Lieut. Griffith to proceed with all speed to Dungarvan for reinforcements. That officer came into town and, reaching near the barracks, shouted that his men were ambushed and to have assistance Come quickly. With incredible swiftness three or four motor cars issued from the barracks, accompanied by lorries, all filled with armed soldiers, machine-guns, and other implements of battle, and proceeded with speed towards the Burgery. The men remaining to keep charge of the barracks shot up Verey lights, discharged their rifles, and some of them rushed to the park, where they sent up more Verey lights as a call to the marines stationed at Ballinacourty to come to the rescue. The firing continued for some hours. The people in the vicinity were aroused from their slumbers, but none would venture outside doors. It was a night of anxiety with them long to be remembered.

But to return to Captain Thomas. When he, with the two soldiers and Sergeant Hickey, dismounted from the motor car they fired into the darkness, and while proceeding to the scene of the ambush, a quarter of a mile distant, a number of the I.R.A., armed with rifles, jumped over the fence, shouting “Hands up.” Captain Thomas ran over the fence as well as the others, but they were followed by the attacking party and placed under arrest. Captain Thomas had a Colt .455 automatic pistol, while Sergeant Hickey was also fully armed. The I.R.A. now took them up to the road and placed Captain Thomas in the house of Mr. Barr, and the soldiers in the house of Mr. Kennedy. Sergeant Hickey was taken away by others up the boreen leading to Knockateemore, and was never afterwards seen alive. Captain Thomas was held a prisoner, but suffered no further injury.

But how fared it all the time with the ambushed party further down the road? The soldiers made away over the fields. It is not known if there were casualties, but afterwards it was stated that there were seen coffins at Waterford being brought to England by one of the cross-channel boats. The ambushed lorry was set fire to and portion of it was burned. The reinforcements came out from Dungarvan, and in the confusion that prevailed Captain Thomas and the soldiers who were prisoners escaped. They then proceeded to where the lorry was disabled and remained there for some time. Soldiers were stationed at the Burgery. The Marines from Ballinacourty came along and they placed themselves at every vantage point; even some of them mounted the roof of Mr. Barr’s house and poured volley after volley into the darkness. Many other houses around bore bullet marks that were seen on the following day. In the early morning, as Mrs. Keating was milking her cow in an out-house visible from the road, the cow was shot dead with a rifle bullet. One bullet pierced Mr. Fives’ window. Luckily no one was hit.

Patrick Keating, Republican
As day broke the soldiers commandeered a horse belonging to Mrs. Morrissey to draw in the disabled lorry, to which they yoked the animal, and, accompanied by soldiers, the lorry was being drawn up the hill on the road to Dungarvan. When at the gate of the field where there is a “short cut” to Lacken the auxiliary policeman, Redman, who had the horse in charge, was mortally wounded and bled copiously. A soldier covered John Fitzgerald, one of the party at the other side of the fence, and shot him dead. Patrick Keating; another of the I.R.A., rushed out from cover to bring Fitzgerald in, but he was fired at and wounded; He went back, but instantly turned again to the assistance of his fallen comrade, when another shot was fired at him which also took effect. With an effort only was he able to get into cover of the fence. His companions took him away, carried him in the direction of Knockateemore, where he was rested for a while, and ultimately he was housed in a dwelling in the high land that overlooks the valley of the Colligan, where he lingered until 5 p.m. same day, and died. Much regret was felt at the death of this young, courageous, and genial Irishman, whose memory is revered by the people.

When Redman, the auxiliary policeman, was wounded Mr. Barr cycled in to town for medical assistance. He called on Dr. Hackett. It was early morning, and the doctor answered the call with promptitude. In a few minutes he was ready and cycled with Mr. Barr to the scene of the tragedy. The ride was a risky one, as bullets were whizzing around, and through the ring of fire the doctor reached the wounded man. On examination he found that nothing could be done – that Redman was mortally wounded. The auxiliary was then taken in a motor car into Dungarvan, a soldier holding him in his arms. He lived till just before entering the barracks, when he expired.

As has been said, Sergeant Hickey was taken up the bye-road that leads to Knockateemore, then towards the glen at Castlequarter. What happened is not quite clear, but it appears he was sentenced to death. A priest was procured and the sergeant was prepared for death. He received the viaticum, and the sentence was then carried out. His body was pierced with bullets, and it was left in the lonely glen. For two days the soldiers scoured the countryside to find him, and it was Mr. Beresford, on whose land the body lay, that discovered it lying in the glen. The soldiers took charge of the remains, which were removed to the barrack. The body of John Fitzgerald was also taken there. The relatives of Fitzgerald made application for the remains, but they would not be given up until the funeral of Sergeant Hickey had taken place. No civilians accompanied Sergeant Hickey’s remains to the grave. The cortege was composed entirely of soldiers and police. In fact there was some difficulty in having the grave dug. An order was issued by the military that all shops should be closed during the funeral, and this was observed. The body was interred in the cemetery of the parish church.

When the funeral of Sergeant Hickey was over, the remains of John Fitzgerald were handed over to the relatives. The funeral took place from the barrack to the Parish church. It was an immense concourse of people. On the following morning Requiem Office and High Mass were sung, and it was known the remains were to be in-terred in Kilrossenty. The military had issued an order that only twenty people would be allowed to follow the remains. As the coffin was removed from the church soldiers were posted outside the railings with fixed bayonets, keeping the crowds back. There was a large number of people present. As the coffin was carried through the outward gates and down Mary Street the ladies of the Cumann na mBan lined up in processional order and marched after the remains. But only a limited number of people were allowed to join the funeral, which passed over the bridge on its way to Kilrossanty. As the cortege proceeded on the road it was met by numbers of people from the country, so that by the time it reached Kilrossenty it had assumed considerable dimensions. The remains were laid to rest in the Republican Plot in the ancient graveyard of Kilrossanty.

Oh, remember, life can be
No charm for him who lives not free.
Sinks the hero to his grave
Midst the dewfall of a nation’s tears.

On the evening of the ambush Patrick Keating died. He, too, subsequently was buried in the Republican Plot at Kilrossanty. The news of his death was kept quiet for a time, but coming from his funeral, which took place in the night, many people were met by soldiers, an exciting time followed, and some arrests were made.

Burgery Monument To Republicans
While this work was going through the press a letter appeared In the Waterford News on the Burgery Ambush. It was written by an officer who took part in the exciting affray. But it does not differ in any essential points with the account here given. And with respect to what took place in Dungarvan on the same night, it would be difficult for an officer engaged at the Burgery to personally know. We who lived inside the town heard through the night the tramp of armed men, the rushing of lorries, and the firing of shots, and those living in the vicinity of the Park give personal testimony as to the terror in which they were that night from rifle shots.

There is a conflict of opinion as to whether Captain Thomas was released or whether he and the soldiers escaped when reinforcements came. When the question was raised subsequent to the ambush, Captain Thomas had a letter published in the papers stating that he and the soldiers escaped, that the guards left them when extra military came out from Dungarvan. The I.R.A. officer maintains they were released. I am not in a position to verify either story.

It might be further stated that ‘in the ambushed lorry there was a man named Dwyer, who was taken with the military as a hostage, and his mysterious disappearance during the fighting was a matter of much speculation. It appears he got through the fields, made for the high ground, and eventually succeeded in reaching Kilrossanty, where his dishevelled condition gave rise to suspicion, but he was ultimately set free on his being recognised by a resident of Dungarvan. There can be no question, however, as to the casualties. On the military side two were killed, Hickey and Redman, and on the I.R.A. Fitzgerald and Keating But these two latter would not have suffered injury had they not come round with others in the morning to reconnoitre the scene of the fighting, when the military had been reinforced to a big extent, which could not be known to the I.R.A. owing to the high road fences and the cover which they afforded.

With many thanks to: Easter Rising War of Independence and Irish Civil War History.

Christina ‘Dina’ Hunter was born in 1901. At the time the Hunter family were living in a one room tenement at number 7 McGuinness Court.

Her father was a coach painter, while her mother, Sarah was a house kepper. They already had a two-year-old son John. They would later move to number 25 Townsend Street, another one room tenement, and the family would expand to include Sarah, Liziebeth and Jane Frances.

image
Christy and Dina Crothers nee Hunter

https://m.facebook.com/dakota29#!/groups/250140148442168?view=permalink&id=798365180286326&ref=m_notif&notif_t=group_activity

image
Kathleen Lynn.
image
The Funeral of Thomas Ashe.
image
Sean Hunter (Johnny).

With many thanks to: Gillean Robertson Miller –
http:// https://m.facebook.com/groups/250140148442168?view=permalink&id=798365180286326&ref=m_notif&notif_t=group_activity#!/gillean.miller?fref=nf&ref=m_notif&notif_t=group_activity

1916 Easter Rising Historical Society.
http:// https://m.facebook.com/groups/250140148442168?view=permalink&id=798365180286326&ref=m_notif&notif_t=group_activity#!/groups/250140148442168?ref=m_notif&notif_t=group_activity

Edward Christopher Dorins (1898 – 1921) (Irish: Éamonn Críostóir Ó Dubhruis) was a member of the IRA who was killed in action by British forces during the Irish War of Independence.

Fuair sé bás ar son saoirse na hÉireann Óglach Éamonn Críostóir Ó Dubhruis.

image
Edward Dorins

https://m.facebook.com/privacy/touch/block/confirm/?bid=100010544017832&ret_cancel&ref=bookmarks#!/gillean.miller/posts/pcb.796235210499323/?photo_id=873441292724357&mds=%2Fphotos%2Fviewer%2F%3Fphotoset_token%3Dpcb.796235210499323%26photo%3D873441292724357%26profileid%3D100002093504519%26source%3D48%26refid%3D18%26ref%3Dbookmarks%26cached_data%3Dfalse%26ftid%3Du_48_0&mdf=1

image
Edward Dorins killed in action while attacking Auxies Custom House 1921.

image

image

image

image
Hamar Greenwood

With many thanks to: Gillean Robertson Miller – 1916 Easter Rising Historical Society….
http:// https://m.facebook.com/gillean.miller/posts/pcb.796235210499323/?photo_id=873441292724357&mds=%2Fphotos%2Fviewer%2F%3Fphotoset_token%3Dpcb.796235210499323%26photo%3D873441292724357%26profileid%3D100002093504519%26source%3D48%26refid%3D18%26ref%3Dbookmarks%26cached_data%3Dfalse%26ftid%3Du_48_0&mdf=1#!/gillean.miller