March 1921


Decision made by IRA GHQ to form the five northern divisions.  1st Northern Division takes in the four Donegal brigades and the Derry City Battalion and Frank Carney is made (temporary) Divisional O/C.  2nd Northern comprises the rest of the County Derry and the three Tyrone brigades.  Eoin O’Duffy (from Monaghan) is made O/C assisted by Charlie Daly (from Kerry) who had earlier been sent by GHQ, as an organiser, to south Derry and Tyrone.

Grant (2018), pg 112


RIC patrol attacked in Charville, Co. Cork; same day Black and Tans kill Sean O'Brien (Chairman, Rural District Council) in reprisal.

O’Donoghue (1986), pg 138


A pensioner and ex-RIC man, Patrick Roche, is taken from his house and shot at Causeway, Listowel, Co. Kerry.  A card was pinned to his body saying 'Convicted spy.  All informers beware IRA.'  This happened after an attack on Causeway RIC barracks which Horgan says took place on the 4th March

Abbott (2000), pg 186; Horgan (2018), pgs 208-212


C. J. Daly from Glasshill Rd., Cork dies as does T. Lobby from Shrough, Ardvillane, Co. Tipperary.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 105


Fermoy Battalion Column attack a police patrol at Macollop (5 miles east of Fermoy, Co Cork).  One policeman is killed and one wounded.  (Not mentioned by Abbott.)


O’Donoghue (1986), pg 138


An RIC patrol was ambushed at Scartacrooks (near Cappoquin, Co. Waterford by the ASU of the Cork Number 2 Brigade - one RIC man (Constable Joseph Duddy) is shot dead.


Abbott (2000), pg 205; McCarthy (2015), pg 81


P. Hogan from Longfield, Co, Tipperary dies as does R. Keane from Hymenstown, Co. Tipperary.

Thomas Mullen (29) from Clonberne or Killavoher, Co. Galway is arrested by Auxiliaries, he is beaten and shot dead.  Official story is that he was shot ‘trying to escape’.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 109 & 110; McNamara (2018), pg 148; Leeson (2012), pg 58


J. Hayes from Knockarden, Co. Tipperary dies as does T. Lee from Fethard, Co. Tipperary.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 109 & 111


The East Waterford IRA ASU attempts to lure Crown Forces out of Dungarvan by holding up the train to Waterford and ambush the forces sent out to investigate near the viaduct at Ballyvoile.  However, the British send more troops than expected.  A firefight develops which lasts most of the day with a small number of wounded on the British side.  Even though the ASU did not suffer any casualties, it had used up a lot of its ammunition.

McCarthy (2015), pgs 79-80


The South Leitrim brigade of the IRA carry out an ambush on a joint RIC/Military convoy at Sheemore (Ballinwing) on the Carrick-on-Shannon to Ballinamore road.  It results in the death of 2nd Lieutenant E. Chivers Wilson of the 1st Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment and the wounding of a number of others. 

In retaliation, Crown Forces go on the rampage in Carrick-on-Shannon attacking, among other building, the offices of the Leitrim Observer. 

Lawlor (2011), pgs 127-128


An RIC man (Constable James Beasant) is shot dead by two men in a public house in Cashel, Co. Tipperary who also seriously injure a girl in the bar.

Constable Beasant was from Wiltshire in England and had four months’ service with the RIC. 

Abbott (2000), pg 205


IRA, under Sean Moylan, carry out a major ambush at Clonbanin, Co Cork  More Detail 

O’Donoghue (1986), pg 139; Lynch in The Kerryman (1955), pgs 169-178 & Hopkinson (2002), pg 112; Townshend (1975), pg 152; Townshend (2014), pgs 242-244


An RIC man (Sgt James Maguire) is shot dead by five men in Kilmallock, Co. Limerick - as a result there are reprisals in the town. He was the RIC Liaison Officer for British Army Intelligence officer, Lieutenant Harold Browne. 


Abbott (2000), pg 205; O’Callaghan (2018), pg 90


T. Larkin from Rosegreen, Co. Tipperary dies.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 111


Martin Clancy from Ballyluskey, Co. Tipperary; Patrick Hackett from Rathkenny, Drangan, Co. Tipperary and Richard (Dick) Fleming from Drangan, Co. Tipperary are killed during an altercation with Crown Forces at Knockroe, Co Tipperary.

C. Foley from Cork also dies.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 104 & 108; Walsh (2018), pg 80


Fires started by IRA in Newcastle, South Shields and Hyde.

Macardle (1999), pg 443


East Waterford Brigade IRA attempts a three-prong attack on Crown Forces in Waterford City but only one prong happened.  In the wake of this failure, O/C Paddy Paul relieves Vice O/C, William Keane of his position.

McCarthy (2015), pg 79


During the night of 6th to 7th March, George Clancy, Lord Mayor of Limerick and Michael O'Callaghan, ex-Lord Mayor of Limerick are shot dead in their homes.

Also, during the night of 6th to 7th March, Joseph (James) O’Donoghue is arrested by the RIC in Limerick.  Next day, his dead body found in Jonesborough Av.   Comment


Macardle (1999), pgs 430-431; Hopkinson (2002), pg xv; O’Farrell (1997), pgs 78; 36; 16 & 76; O’Callaghan (2018), pg 84; Lesson (2012), pgs 189-190


Sean MacEoin, O/C Longford Flying Column, arrested at Mullingar railway station on his way back from Dublin, where he had been summoned by Cathal Brugha (who wanted him to participate in a plan he had to assassinate the British cabinet), MacEoin is badly wounded. He is charged with the murder of DI McGrath – see January 7th above.  (O’Farrell says 21st March.)  See May 14th below.

O'Farrell P (1997), pg 61; Coleman (2003), pgs 128-129


British army patrol of 18 men from the Border Regiment attacked at Kilfall or Kilfaul (between Castlebar and Ballinrobe) by South Mayo Brigade of the IRA under Tom Maguire - the British surrender and are disarmed.  A number of British soldiers are wounded and one – Corporal Bell – died of his wounds five days later.  First ambush by the South Mayo Brigade.

The Crown Forces engage in reprisals including killing Thomas Horan from Srah. (It is possible that Horan was killed because he had lodged a claim against the British military for looting six weeks earlier.)

Hopkinson (2002), pg 135; Price (2012), pgs 120-123; Leeson (2012), pg 187 & 218


RIC Constable Harold Stiff commits suicide.

Abbott (2019), pg 413


Kanturk Battalion, Cork No. 2 Brigade ambushes RIC at Father Murphy's Bridge, Shronedaha, Banteer, Co Cork resulting in one RIC man killed (Constable Nicholas Somers) and three others wounded.  All were disarmed.


O’Donoghue (1986), pg 141; Abbott (2000), pg 206


Special Constable William Graham is shot dead by a fellow Special near Grogey Cross in Co. Fermanagh.

Abbott (2019), pg 406


Dromagh Castle, near Millstreet, Co Cork destroyed by Kanturk Column and Millstreet Battalion Column.


O’Donoghue (1986), pg 143


The bodies of two young men – Patrick Larmer (or Larmour) (23) and Francis McPhillips (21) are found near Aghabog, Co. Monaghan.  Both had been shot as informers by the IRA.  (Both were Catholic.) 

A number of years later, the local parish priest claimed that McPhillips should not have been executed by he was “not up to the normal mental standard”.  The IRA had, a few months previously, tied him to the rails of a local Catholic Church during mass on a Sunday morning.  Larmer had been a member of the IRA and, it would seem, had given information to the Crown Forces on the local IRA after been arrested.

Dooley (2017a), pgs 87-90; Phoenix (1994), pg 118; Lawlor (2011); pgs 142-145


The court-martial of Denis Murphy, one of the IRA men captured after the failed Dripsey ambush, starts in Victoria Barracks, Cork.  He is sentenced to death but on the 17th March, he is informed that the sentence has been commuted to 25 years penal servitude.

Sheehan (1990), pg 138


Brigade HQ of Cork No. 2 Brigade along with two of its columns (Kanturk and Mallow) are almost surrounded by a large British force carrying out a large scale sweep at Nadd (in the Boggeragh Mountains).   The HQ staff and the two columns escape.  A house is surrounded with six members of the Mallow column asleep inside.  Two make their escape (Joe Morgan and John Moloney) but the other four Volunteers are shot dead after surrendering (David Herlihy, Edward Waters, Timothy Kiely and Edward Twoney).  O’Donoghue and Lynch indicate that the British got their information from a Kanturk Column member who was an ex-British soldier. 

O’Donoghue (1986), pg 142; Lynch in The Kerryman (1955), pg 230; O’Malley (1990), pg 300


The British government, having postponed the election for the Dublin parliament, is asked by Devlin in the House of Commons to also postpone the election for the Belfast parliament.  However, Llyod George replies that the majority in the area were ‘undoubtedly in favour of the experiment being made at the earliest possible moment’.

Phoenix (1994), pg 117


L. Hickey from Main St., Thurles dies as does J. Kennelly from Mooneen, Moybella, Co. Kerry and W. Loughnane from Thurles.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 109 & 110


Ten IRA volunteers, staying at the Flynn and McCullagh homes at Selton Hill between Ballinamore and Mohill in Co Leitrim are surrounded by 27 men from the Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Regiment.  Six IRA are killed (Jack or John Hunt, Seamus Wrynne V/C; Joseph O’Beirne (or Beirne); John Joe Reilly; John Joseph O’Reilly and Michael E. Baxter). Their leader, Sean Connolly, dies the next day in Carrick-on-Shannon military barracks.   More Detail

Hopkinson (2002), pg 144; O'Malley (2001), pgs 97-98 & 101; Leavy in The Kerryman (1955), pg 194; O’Farrell (1997), pg 74 & 89 & 102; Coleman (2003), pg 129; Lawlor (2011), pgs 128-135


Three RIC men are attacked near the corner of Victoria Sq and Church St in Belfast resulting in the death of all three (Constable Walter Cooper, Constable Robert Crooks and Constable John McIntosh).  Two civilians are also injured in the attack and one of them, Alexander Allan (a Protestant) died later in hospital.  IRA party probably led by Rodger McCorley.  Heavy raiding by the military ensued but no reprisal killings.

Constable Cooper was from Surrey in England; Constable Crooks was from Cornwall in England and Constable McIntosh was from Inverness in Scotland.  The had five, five and three months’ service with the RIC respectively.

Abbott (2000), pg 206; Parkinson (2004), pgs 113-114; McDermott (2001), pg 72; Abbott (2019), pg 262


An RIC man (Constable Daniel Murphy) left Broadford Barracks, Co. Clare to go to Sixmilebridge but his body is found later in the day with a number of bullet wounds.  Ó Ruairc says that he was an intelligence officer and shot by Martin McNamara and John Curley.

Abbott (2000), pg 207; Ó Ruairc (2009), pg 231


The Tuam Herald reports RC Archbishop of Tuam, Thomas Gilmartin, as saying “if the full tale of flogging, burning, terrorism and looting [by Crown Forces] could be told the whole picture would make even savages ashamed”.

McNamara (2018), pg 142


The flying column of the 7th Battalion of the West Kilkenny Brigade is surrounded by a joint British Army/RIC patrol at Garryricken House (off the main Kilkenny-Clonmel Road).  Hopkinson says that some manage to fight their way out killing one RIC man.  Abbott says that three IRA men managed to escape and that five were captured.  Constable Ernst Riley is killed (and RIC DI Hubert Baynham is wounded). Walsh says that four IRA men managed to escape and two others were captured, along with three civilians. (He names them all.)

Constable Riley was from Surrey in England and had just sixteen days service with the RIC.

Hopkinson (2002), pg 124; Abbott (2000), pg 207; Walsh (2018), pgs 80-83


A train containing a number of Auxiliaries was travelling towards Listowel, Co. Kerry when it was attacked at Tubrid Railway Station near Ardfert resulting in the death of one Cadet (Walter Falkiner).

Abbott (2000), pg 207


The IRA burn Leemount House, the home of Mrs Lindsay who they were holding prisoner.

Sheehan (1990), pgs 165-167


The Leinster Leader reports that “Another internment camp, conducted on the same lines as Ballykinlar Camp, has been opened at the Rath, Curragh.  A large number of prisoners have been transferred from the Hare Park Camp to the Rath, where no visits are allowed”.  It was named after the nearby ancient Gibbet Rath and could house 1,500 prisoners.

Durney (2013), pg 163


Thomas Shanahan shot dead by Crown Forces at Moyasta, Co. Clare.

Ó Ruairc (2009), pg 231


An Auxiliary patrol of two lorries and an armoured car, which was on its way to raid St. Andrews Club, 144 Brunswick (Pearse) St., Dublin is attacked on Brunswick St. near the corner of Erne St. (or Sandwith St).   In the gun battle that follows, three IRA men are killed (including L. Fitzgerald from 173 Brunswick (Pearse) St.) and two policemen (Cadet Bernard Beard and Constable James O'Farrell).  In addition, a number of IRA men are captured and two of these (Tom Traynor and Jack Donnelly) are tried by Court Martial and convicted for murder.  Traynor is hung on the 25th April.  (Abbott says that Donnelly was also found guilty and faced a similar fate but was released after the Truce.  He says Donnelly was wounded.  However, Carey says that only two IRA men were captured and the other (i.e. not Traynor) was wounded and subsequently died.)   O’Farrell says the IRA were led by Sean McBride.


Abbott (2000), pgs 208-209; Carey (2001), pg 136; O’Farrell (1997), pg 58; Leeson (2012), pgs 145-146


Six IRA men are hung in Mountjoy Jail. Paddy Moran and Thomas Whelan are hung for taking part in the Bloody Sunday killings of British agents (see 21st November 1920).  The four other men are hung for taking part in an ambush in Drumcrondra (see January 21st and February 23rd).  Their names were Thomas Bryan, Patrick Doyle, Frank Flood and Bernard Ryan.  More Detail 


Breen (1989), pg 157; Carey (2001), pgs 55-133; O’Daly, WS 387, BMH, pg 40


Meeting in Dungloe, Co. Donegal to form the 1st Northern Division of the IRA.  Representatives of all four Donegal brigades were present.  Frank Carney from Fermanagh temporary O/C of the Division and gets a brief from Mulcahy to re-organise three of the four brigades and recommend appointments for divisional staff.  (Three GHQ organisers in Donegal at this time.)

Ó Duibhir (2009), pgs 227-229; Ozseker (2019), pg 129


Start of court martial of Edmond Foley and Paddy Maher in City Hall, Dublin for taking part in the rescue of Sean Hogan at Knocklong, Co Limerick on 13th May 1919.  They had been arrested in September 1919 and tried twice in Limerick but the juries could not agree on a verdict.  Their trial was then moved to Armagh but had to be postponed after a key witness (Sergeant Reilly) was kidnapped.  After the introduction of the Restoration of Order Ireland Act, their case was handed over to the military.  The court martial was to last five days and, unlike previous court martials, the two accused gave lengthy statements to the court.  See June 7th.


Carey (2001), pgs 159-160


IRA GHQ sends a letter to Tom Maguire, O/C South Mayo Brigade, which had come into its possession.  It was written by three men from south Mayo to Llyod George naming six “leading Sinn Féiners in this locality” and saying “it would be a charity to place those blackguards under restraint and have them deported from this part of the country”.   However, it would seem that Maguire was reluctant to move against the three men who wrote the letter.

Price (2012), pgs 131-135


A pharmacist (William Kennedy) and his solicitor (TJ O’Dempsey) are killed on the Main St of Borris, Co. Carlow by members of the Carlow Brigade of the IRA.  John Hynes, V/C of the 4th Battalion was in charge of the operation and in his BMH statement says that Kennedy had consorted with the Black and Tans and fired on volunteers.

McGreevy (2019), pgs 8-9; Townshend (2014), pg 262


An RIC patrol was shot at near Ballymote, Co. Sligo resulting in the death of one policeman (Constable James O'Brien).  IRA man, Jim Molloy, captured at the scene and badly beaten before being imprisoned – see 21st May.

Constable O’Brien is from Lancashire in England and had almost four months’ service with the RIC.

Abbott (2000), pg 209; Farry (2012), pg 67; Lawlor (2011), pg 138


Volunteer Patrick Hassett, of the West Clare Brigade, is accidently shot by a comrade at Kilmore House.  He dies less than a week later.

Ó Ruairc (2009), pgs 231-232


The newly formed flying column of the West Galway (Connemara) Brigade led by Peter (Petie) Joe McDonnell ambush a four-man RIC patrol in Clifden, Co. Galway resulting in the death of two RIC men (Constable Charles O'M Reynolds and Constable Thomas Sweeney). 

Thomas Whelan, hung in Mountjoy Jail on the 14th, was originally from Clifden and this attack was aimed to avenge his execution.  

In the aftermath of the attack, the RIC went on a rampage burning down at least 16 buildings in Clifden.  One of the houses targeted is the home of Thomas Whelan.  The RIC also kill a civilian (J.J. MacDonnell) who called to the police station to ask for help putting out the fire which was engulfing his father’s hotel.  MacDonnell was a retired British military officer.


Hopkinson (2002), pg 138; Abbott (2000), pg 209; McDonnell in The Kerryman (1995), pg 204; McNamara (2018), pgs 126-127 & 148; Henry (2012), pgs 194-201; Leeson (2012), pgs 58-59


An RIC constable (Constable John Grant) is attacked when riding his bicycle at Tullacremin (1.5 miles from Abbeydorney, Co. Kerry) and later dies.

Abbott (2000), pg 209-210; Abbott (2019), pg 266


Bonar Law leaves the British Cabinet due to ill-health.  (Townshend says this was another blow to the 'die-hard' party in Cabinet after the retirement of Walter Long – See February 13th and it was to receive a further blow by the replacement of Lord French by Viscount Fitzalan – See 1st April.)

Law is replaced as leader of the Conservative and Unionist Party by Austen Chamberlain.  Lesson says that that Chamberlain “apparently had not inherited his father Joseph Chamberlain’s passion for the Union”.  (Bonar Law recovers by September 1921.)

Townshend (1975), pg 174; Leeson (2012), pg 65


The IRA destroy Richill train station three miles outside Portadown, Co. Armagh including 12 goods wagons.

Lawlor (2011), pgs 136-137


Men from Donegal No. 4 Brigade, under Acting O/C Henry McGowan, commander two cars to go from Ballybofey to Dungloe to collect some weapons which had been lent to the Donegal No. 1 Brigade.  (One of the cars belonged to a Dr Johnston and this episode became the subject of the song ‘Johnston’s Motor Car’ which became well known in the area.)

A subsequent attack on Castlederg RIC (on the 21st March) barracks had to be abandoned after a volunteer accidently fires his rifle prematurely.

Ó Duibhir (2009), pgs 232-233


A seven-man RIC patrol is ambushed near the village of Castletownroche, Co. Cork resulting in the death of one RIC man (Constable Walter Elton). 

Constable Elton was from Middlesex in England and had three months’ service with the RIC.

Abbott (2000), pg 210; Abbott (2019), pg 267


The West Cork IRA flying column, led by Tom Barry, are near Crossbarry, Co Cork.  They are nearly surrounded by Crown Forces but manage to escape.  This is one of the largest military encounters of the War of Independence.  Afterwards, Charlie Hurley, O/C Cork No. 3 Brigade, who was recovering from wounds received at Upton, is killed when trapped in a house. 

IRA claim over 30 thirty British killed while official British figures were 10 killed and 6 IRA men killed.  Abbott says that six British Army soldiers and one RIC man (Constable Arthur Kenward) were killed and that one IRA man was killed (Peter Monahan - who was a British Army deserter) and a number of other IRA men wounded.  Townshend says that the British Army lost eight men and another four wounded. 

A full list of the IRA men who fought at Crossbarry is given in Appendix F of Deasy (1973), pgs 351-355.  One of the British Army casualties was notorious Capt Hotblack.

Constable Kenward was from Surrey in England and had almost six months’ service with the RIC.

O'Farrell P (1997), pg xvii; Abbott (2000), pgs 210-211; Crowley in The Kerryman (1955), pgs 179-185; Hopkinson (2002), pg 111-112; Deasy (1973), pgs 234-254; Townshend (2014), pg 245


A car and lorry joint RIC/British Army patrol is ambushed at Burgery two miles outside Dungarvan, Co. Waterford by the East Waterford ASU led by George Lennon and Pax Whelan.  (with George Plunkett – brother of Joseph – also present).  The men in the lorry scatter and the ASU collects some rifles and also captures two from British side.  One is later killed by his captors (RIC Sgt Michael Hickey) while the other (Captain Thomas) is rescued or released. 

The ASU wants to retreat to the sanctuary of the Comeragh Mountains but is persuaded by Plunkett to return to the ambush site to collect any discarded rifles or ammunition.  This proves a disaster for the ASU as they run into a large Crown Forces search party.  An unplanned encounter ensues which leads to the death of two IRA men, Pat Keating (Comeragh, Kilmacthomas) and Sean MacGearailt (J. Fitzgerald from Gotivicary). Another policeman (Constable Sydney Redman) also dies from the wounds he received in the ambush. 

Constable Redman was from Kent in England and had two months’ service with the RIC.  Sgt Hickey was from Limerick and had fifteen years of service with the RIC.

(McCarthy says 18th.)

Abbott (2000), pg 211; O’Farrell (1997), pg 50; McCarthy (2015), pgs 80-81; Abbott (2019), pgs 268-269


C. Daly from Ballinascarthy, Co. Cork dies

O’Farrell (1997), pg 105


During disturbances in the Great George’s St area of Belfast, two men are shot.  One of these, John Graham (35), a Catholic later dies of his wounds in hospital.

Parkinson (2004), pg 114


An RIC men is killed as he goes to investigate a noise in an empty house in the village of Doochary in Co. Donegal.  (Not mentioned by Abbott.)

Lawlor (2011), pgs 138-139; Ó Duibhir (2009), pg 231


An RIC man (Constable James McKenna) is shot and killed near his barracks at Falcarragh, Co. Donegal.  He was in an outhouse when volunteers from the Donegal No. 1 flying column, under Peadar O’Donnell, attacked the RIC barracks in Falcarragh.  The column had placed a mine at the gable of the barracks but it failed to explode. 

Abbott (2000), pg 212; Lawlor (2011), pgs 139-140; Ó Duibhir (2009), pg 235; Ozseker (2019), pg 128


An RIC man (Constable William Campbell), who was on sick leave, is shot dead when he goes into the backyard of his lodgings in Mullinahone, Co. Tipperary.  According to Walsh, Campbell was shot by members of the ASU of the 7th Battalion, Kilkenny Brigade who were attempting to assassinate an Auxiliary officer called Litchfield who they believed responsible for the killing of the three IRA men at Knockroe on the 6th March.

Abbott (2000), pg 212;  Walsh (2018), pg 84


Attack by Kerry No. 2 Brigade Column (under Dan Allman and Tom McEllistrim) on British troops at Headford Railway Junction near Killarney results in the death of two IRA men (including Allman) and three civilians.  More Detail 

O’Donoghue (1986), pg 165; Gallagher in The Kerryman (1955), pgs 186-193 & Hopkinson (2002), pg 126; O'Farrell P (1997), pg 61; Horgan (2018), pgs 299-300 & 315


2,569 internees at this point

Hopkinson (2002), pg 94


Mrs Mary Lindsay and James Clarke, who had been held a hostage for about five weeks, are killed.  More Detail

Sheehan (1990), pg 173-177


Ambush set by No. 1 Kerry Brigade IRA flying column at Lispole on the Dingle peninsula in Co. Kerry led by Paddy Cahill (Brigade O/C).  The intended target was a British Army convoy but the column stayed in place for three days.  The British found out and outflanked the ambushers.  Three IRA men were killed – Thomas M Ashe; Tommy Hawley and M Fitzgerald. (Ashe dies on 23rd March and Hawley on the 2nd May.)  Cahill dismissed from his command three weeks later and replaced by Andy Cooney.  Lispole Memorial

O’Farrell (1997), pg 12 & 102; Horgan (2018), pgs 82-83 & 86 & 200-202


P. Hassett from Killimer, Co. Clare dies.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 109


At a meeting with Mulcahy and Collins in Dublin, Ernie O’Malley made O/C of the 2nd Southern Division IRA  which comprises Mid and East Limerick Brigades; South and Mid Tipperary Brigades and Kilkenny brigade.

Macardle (1999), pg 439; O’Donoghue (1986), pg 198; O’Malley (1990), pg 288


The Irish Times reports the RC Archbishop of Tuam, Thomas Gilmartin, as saying “what is called the IRA may contain the flower of Irish youth, but they have no authority from the Irish people or from any moral principle to wage war against unequal forces with the consequence of terror, arson and death to innocent people”.  (He also agreed with the people of Galway “in their feelings of horror and indignation at the actions of the Crown forces”.) 

McNamara (2018), pg 136


Mulcahy's papers discovered in raid by British forces

Hopkinson (2002), pg 57 & 225


A five-man RIC cycle patrol is ambushed at Blackwood, Co. Roscommon (between Keadue and Ballyfarnon) - two RIC men are killed (Constable William Devereux and Constable Michael Dowling) and another wounded (Sgt Reilly).  Attack led by Michael Dockery, O/C North Roscommon Brigade.  Sgt Reilly recognises Dockery.

Afterwards, the RIC and Auxiliaries terrorise the neighbourhood.  A number of arrests are made and prisoners given severe beatings.  A young man, Joe Molloy of Knockvicar, is shot dead in a field near his home.

Abbott (2000), pgs 212-213; O’Farrell (1997), pg 28; O’Callaghan (2012), pgs 135-137; Leeson (2012), pg 140


The Flying Column of the West Mayo Brigade under Michael Kilroy were checking for ambush positions near Drummin, Co. Mayo (between Westport and Leenaun) when a four man RIC cycle patrol appeared round a bend.  In the ensuing fight, one RIC man was killed (Sgt John Coughlan) and the three others were injured.  Kilroy was aided by Brodie Malone and Joe Ring.  (The rest of the column was nearby but not engaged in the fire fight.)

Abbott (2000), pg 213;  Price (2012), pgs 124-125


On the night of the (21st or) 22nd, the IRA launched attacks on the homes of 14 Unionists in the Roslea area of Co. Fermanagh - mostly the homes of B members of the newly formed Special Constabulary.  Two Special Constables (S/Sgt Samuel Nixon and S/Sgt William Gorden) are killed.  S/Sgt Nixon is killed after he surrendered.  Similarly, another man who was in S/Sgt Gorden's house was killed after he surrendered.  Matt Fitzpatrick, O/C 1st Battalion, Fermanagh Brigade was wounded and captured – see March 30th. 

It would seem that these attacks (ordered by Eoin O’Duffy of the Monaghan Brigade of IRA with help from the South Armagh Brigade under Frank Aiken) were in retaliation of the earlier burning (in late February) of nationalist houses in Roslea by the Specials.  Which is turn arose from the wounding of a ‘notorious’ Special on the 21st (or 23rd) February which was ordered because of intimation of young nationalists by the Specials in Roslea – see 21st February

When news of these killings reached Belfast, trouble broke out in the York St. area with an exchange of gunfire. This led to the death of Annie Jamison, a Catholic from Moffat St.  (Two Catholic brothers were charged with her murder but were acquitted.)

(O’Dooley says 21st)

Abbott (2000), pg 213-214; Parkinson (2004), pg 114; Dooley (2017a), pg 93; Lawlor (2011), pgs; Abbott (2019), pgs 271-272; Lynch (2010), pgs 192-193


The Brigade Adjutant writes to the O/C of the East Limerick Brigade saying that a farmer called Patrick O’Gorman had been executed as a spy.

Townshend (2014), pg 266


Arthur Mulcahy from Currebeha, Co. Cork is taken from his home by Black and Tans and shot dead.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 107


The flying columns of the North and South Roscommon Brigades under Patrick Madden (O/C South Roscommon Brigade) ambush a nine-man British patrol (Ninth Lancers and RIC) in a Crossley tender at Scramogue (on the Strokestown-Longford road) which results in the death of five members of the British forces.  More Detail

Hopkinson (2002), pg 144; Abbott (2000), pgs 214-215; O'Malley (2001), pgs 100-115; Leavy in The Kerryman (1955), pgs 193-199; O’Farrell (1997), pg 97 & 114; O’Callaghan (2012), pgs 138-148; Lesson (2012), pgs 150-151


Six IRA men (Daniel Crowley, William Deasy, Thomas Dennehy, Jeremiah Mullane, Daniel Murphy, Michael O'Sullivan) from the 1st Battalion, Cork No. 1 Brigade are killed when they are surrounded in a barn in Clogheen by the British Army.  According to Hart, they were given a 'sporting chance' and shot as they ran.

O'Kelly in The Kerryman (1955), pg 26; Hart (1998), pg 99


An official Black and Tan warning is posted in Dundalk. Co. Louth that 20 members of the IRA would be executed for every policeman or soldier ‘shot, injured or interfered with’.

Hall (2019), pg 79


British army discover IRA arms dump in Mountjoy Sq, Dublin consisting of 6 rifles and 35 revolvers.

Townshend (1975), pg 175


A. Murphy, Watkins Buildings, The Coombe, Dublin dies.

O'Farrell P (1997), pg 114


Louis Darcy, O/C Headford Battalion, IRA is arrested by the Auxiliaries at Oranmore train station in Co. Galway on the 23rd.  His body is found in Galway on the following day and, it is alleged, that he was dragged behind a military vehicle from Oranmore to Galway.  He was officially listed by the RIC as ‘shot while trying to escape’.  After reading the proceedings of the Military Court of Inquiry, Macready wrote; “DAG. This would not have occurred if the prisoner had been handcuffed or properly secured”.

O'Farrell P (1997), pg 25; McNamara (2018), pgs 152&153; Henry (2012), pg 202; Leeson (2012), pgs 59 & 183


The Barraduff company of the IRA in Co. Kerry, arrest an ex-soldier on suspicion of spying.  He is subsequently executed on this day.

Townshend (2014), pg 264


Following the Burgery ambush (see March 19th), official and unofficial reprisals in Dungarvan, Co. Waterford and area surrounding the ambush burning or blowing up at least five houses (including the Strand Hotel in Abbeyside) and shooting up many more.

McCarthy (2015), pg 82


Henry (or Harry) Kerr (or Carr or Corr) is abducted from his house in Corvoy in the Tullycorbett area of Co. Monaghan and killed as an informer by the IRA. 

Dooley (2017a), pg 90; Lawlor (2011), pg 125


A party of armed men attack the house of Fr O’Hara, parish priest of Kiltimagh, Co Mayo.  He had complained to the British military about the treatment of a number of young men in Kiltimagh some days earlier.  After being kicked and punched, the young men had been forced by the British military to repeatedly jump into the freezing water of a river. 

Price (2012), pg 126


In retaliation for the killing of Patrick McKenna (see August 31st 1920), a party of 40 IRA return to the Fleming House at Drumgara outside Castleblayney, Co Monaghan and lay siege to the house.  After receiving a guarantee that his house would be spared, Mr Fleming surrenders.  He and his son are shot dead in front of another son and his daughter.  The Flemings were Protestants.  They are given a military style funeral so may have been B Specials.

Dooley (2017a), pgs 93-94; Lawlor (2011), pg 125; Dooley (2000), pg 44


In retaliation for the killing of Sergeant Coughlan (see March 22nd), a large number of homes and businesses in Westport, Co. Mayo and the surrounding areas are burnt or bombed or wrecked by the RIC with the focus on the homes and businesses of Sinn Féin supporters (including the home and business of Charles Hughes, Chairman of the UDC).    Retaliation planned and organised by RIC DI Peter Donnellan.

Price (2012), pg 125


IRA ambush at Keadue, Co. Roscommon

Leavy in The Kerryman (1955), pg 198


A major IRA ambush on Collooney RIC barracks in Co. Sligo ends in failure.

Farry (2012), pg 67


An IRA despatch rider, William McCarthy (Lixnaw, Co. Kerry) is arrested and killed ‘while trying to escape’, allegedly after being tortured.  After reading the proceedings of the Military Court of Inquiry, Macready wrote on the file the it was “quite inexcusable” that McCarthy had not been handcuffed.

O'Farrell P (1997), pg 59; Leeson (2012), pg 183


Offices of the Dáil Department of Publicity raided and the equipment used for the production of the Irish Bulletin were removed to Dublin Castle.  Four days later, forged Irish Bulletins began to appear with not-too-subtle anti-IRA propaganda.

Macardle (1999), pg 444; Gallagher (1953), pgs 95-102; Regan (2007), pg 153

Mar -27

D. McEnery from Monegay, Co. Limerick dies.

O’Farrell (1997), pg 112


RIC Constable William Stephens is shot on Knox St., Ballyhaunis, Co. Mayo and later dies of his wounds. See April 1st.

Abbott (2000), pg 216; Price (2012), pg 126


A four-man RIC cycle patrol is ambushed at Ballyfermot, Co. Dublin which results in the death of two RIC men (H/Constable Edward Mulrooney and Sgt Michael Hallisey) and the serious wounding of one other (Constable Neill).

Hallisey was shot by Padraig O’Connor of the Dublin ASU,

Abbott (2000), pg 216; Abbott (2019), pg 274; O’Connor and Connolly (2011), pg 41


De Valera, with Dáil authorisation, states in an interview with an American news agency that the IRA is the national defence force.  He said “one of our first governmental acts was to take control of the voluntary armed forces of the nation.  From the Irish Volunteers we fashioned the Irish Republican Army to be the military arm of the government.  This army is, therefore, a regular State force, under the civil control of the elected representatives … and under officers who hold their commissions under warrant from these representatives.  The Government is, therefore, responsible for the actions of this army.”

De Valera then went on to defend the tactic of ambushing Crown Forces.  (Gallagher says that the Dáil had given de Valera authority to publicly assume responsibility for the IRA but he does not state when this happened.)

Curran J M (1980), pg 47; Macardle (1999), pgs 436-437; Gallagher (1953), pg 273; Townshend (2014), pgs 231-232


Sean Finn, O/C West Limerick Brigade is killed in action in the Ballyhahill/Athea area, Co. Limerick

Harnett (2002), pgs 78-79; O'Farrell (1997), pg 33; O’Callaghan (2018), pg 87


An IRA party, led by Dan Hogan, rescue one of their comrades (Matt Fitzpatrick) from County Hospital in Monaghan Town.

There was also an attack on Carrickmaccross RIC barracks.

O'Kelly in The Kerryman (1955), pgs 200-203; Lawlor (2011), pgs 120-124 & 141-142


The British army discover an IRA Lewis gun in Harcourt St, Dublin along with 6,000 rounds of ammunition.

Townshend (1975), pg 175


The Flying Column of the Cork (West) No. 3 under Tom Barry attacks Rosscarberry RIC barracks by placing a mine at the front door.  Two RIC men are killed (Sgt Ambrose Shea and Constable Charles Bowles) and nine other constables wounded.  The mine used in the attack is made by ex-REME Capt McCarthy. 

Sgt Shea was from Co. Wicklow and Constable Bowes was from Kent in England.  The latter had eight months’ service with the RIC

Hopkinson (2002), pg 113; Abbott (2000), pgs 216-217; Deasy (1973), pgs 260-262; O’Farrell (1997), pg 58; Abbott (2019), pgs 275-276; Leeson (2012), pgs 143-144


RIC Constable Stanley Moore is shot dead on the Main St. of Miltown-Malbay, Co. Clare. 

The attack was carried out by the 4th Battalion of the Mid-Clare Brigade under Ignatius O’Neill.  A few days later, practically the entire adult population of Miltown-Malbay is rounded up at gunpoint by Crown Forces so that they can watch them   blow up with explosives a house and drapery shop.

Constable Moore was from Glamorgan in Wales and had nine month’s service with the RIC. 

Abbott (2000), pg 218; Ó Ruairc (2009), pgs 232-233; Abbott (2019), pg 276


RIC Barracks Sergeant John Griffith is shot dead by a sentry as he approaches his barracks in Dublin after he fails to respond to a challenge.

Abbott (2019), pgs 406-407


Following the number of prisoners ‘shot when trying to escape’, the Deputy Inspector General of the RIC, C. A. Walsh, issues a circular which states “In future prisoners must be handcuffed – The police all carry handcuffs, and a very full explanation will be required if any prisoners escaping – do so not handcuffed”

Leeson (2012), pgs 183-184


Volunteer Charlie Reilly of the Newmarket Column IRA is shot dead at Collagh Bridge,  outside of Newmarket, Co. Cork.

Lynch in The Kerryman (1955), pg 231


Ned Broy (one of Collins’ main agents inside the Crown forces) is arrested.  However, due to the inadvertent destruction of his papers, nothing could be proved against him.  (Foy gives 17th February as date of arrest.)

O’Farrell (1997), pg 11; Foy (2017), pg 425


Gola House in Co Monaghan (said to be the finest in the county) burnt by IRA

Dooley (2017), pg 113


In his report for March, the RIC Deputy Inspector General, C. A. Walsh, notes that the Dungloe area of Co. Donegal still had no police and goes on to say that “The area comprises one-sixth of the county and it seems to have become a miniature Republic”.  The area had no permanent RIC or British Army presence since October 1920.

Leeson (2012), pg 23


British secret service man killed in Roscommon

Leavy in The Kerryman (1955), pg 198


T. Golden from Shanagolden, Co. Limerick dies

O’Farrell (1997), pg 113


The RIC Divisional Commissioner in Galway/Mayo, Richard Cruise, starts to carry out 'official' reprisals even though Galway is outside the martial law area.  Despite alarm in the Castle, he gets support from Tudor.

Townshend (1975), pg 166


An agreement is reached between Sinn Féin and the nationalists for a voting pact for the forthcoming election for the Northern Ireland parliament based on abstention from the Belfast parliament.  This pact is agreed by an 800-strong conference of nationalists in Belfast on the 4th April and on the 6th April is signed by the Joe Devlin ‘on behalf of U.I.L. and associated organisations’ and by de Valera on behalf of Sinn Féin. 

Phoenix (1994), pg 119


At about this time, de Valera asks Robert Brennan to set up a Foreign Office (where he would be Under-Secretary) to co-ordinate the work of Irish envoys abroad.  Brennan sets up offices in 2 Harcourt Pl (now 36 Fenian St) and brings the following people to work with him: Frank Kelly, James Carty, Mairin Creggan, James Bolger and George Homan.  (De Valera also asked Brennan to go to the States!)

Brennan (1950), pgs 297-298


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