Detail of Rathclarin Ambush

There were 6 men in the patrol (1 RIC and 5 British Army) and 14 in the IRA ambushing party.  Only two of the IRA men were armed (one revolver and one shotgun) - the rest attacked the armed British patrol unarmed using only the element of surprise.  The injured IRA man was Mick O'Neill - other IRA men who took part in the ambush included Jeremiah O'Neill and Con Crowley.  This action was not sanctioned by Brigade HQ.  Deasy comments that "The fact that it was completely successful had an immense effect on morale and on the whole direction of the volunteer military effort in West Cork" (Deasy 1973, pg 67).  Hart refers to this ambush as pivotal.