Category Archives: REMEMBER OUR PATRIOT DEAD
On 28th October 1976, 28 years ago, Sinn Féin Vice President Máire Drumm was shot dead in her hospital bed.
Máire Drumm (née McAteer), was born in the townland of Killeen, South Armagh, on 22 October 1919 to a staunchly republican family. Máire’s mother had been active in the Tan War and the Civil War.
In 1940, Máire joined Sinn Féin in Dublin. In 1942, she moved to Belfast, which became her adopted city and she continued her republican activities. Every weekend, Máire would carry food parcels to the republican prisoners in Crumlin Road Jail and it was here that she met Jimmy Drumm, who she married in 1946.
When the IRA renewed the armed struggle in the late 1950s, Jimmy was again interned without trial from ’57 to ’61.
Máire became actively involved in the Civil Rights Movements of the 1960s. She worked tirelessly to rehouse the thousands of nationalists forced from their homes by unionist/loyalist pogroms.
During her work as a Civil Rights activist, Máire emerged as one of the Republican Movement’s most gifted leaders and organisers. Máire was the first to warn that the British troops sent in as “peace keepers” were a force of occupation. Máire was a dynamic and inspirational speaker. Once, when addressing a rally in Derry after the shooting of two men from the city, Máire said:
“The people of Derry are up off their bended knees. For Christ sake stay up. People should not shout up the IRA, they should join the IRA.”
In 1972, Máire became Vice President of Sinn Féin. Due to their dedication to the republican struggle, Máire’s family was continuously harassed by the RUC, British Army and by loyalist intimidation. The British Army even constructed an observation post facing their home in Andersonstown. At one point, her husband and son were interned at the same time. Her husband, Jimmy became known as the most jailed republican in the Six Counties. Máire was also jailed twice for ‘seditious’ speeches, once along with her daughter.
In 1976, her eyesight began to fail and she was admitted for a cataract operation to the Mater Hospital, Belfast. On 28 October 1976, as Máire lay in her hospital bed, loyalist killers wearing doctors white coats walked into her room and shot her dead.
Máire Drumm, freedom fighter and voice of the people, was buried in Milltown Cemetery. One of her most famous quotes was:
“We must take no steps backward, our steps must be onward, for if we don’t, the martyrs that died for you, for me, for this country will haunt us forever.”
With many thanks to: Easter Rising War of Independence and Irish Civil War History.
THE BRAVE Men & Women Who Give Their Lives For Irish Freedom.
80 men and women travelled the Irish Sea from various parts of the UK to play their part with the Irish Volunteers in the Easter Rising some had Irish Parents,some had not.They too helped fight against the oppression and tyranny of British Government and Crown Forces in Ireland 1916
With many thanks to: Easter Rising War of Independence and Irish Civil War History.
Remembering IRA Volunteers Patrick Moran, Bernard Ryan, Patrick Doyle, Francis Flood, Thomas Whelan & Thomas Bryan who were hanged at Mountjoy by British Forces on the 14th of March 1921.
Thomas Whelan was born in Gortrummagh near Clifden, Co Galway to John and Bridget Whelan on 5 October 1898, the sixth child of thirteen. He attended national school at Beleek and Clifden, before leaving school at 15 to work on his father’s farm. He moved to Dublin at the age of 18, where he found work as a railwayman, and joined the Irish Volunteers as a member of ‘A’ Company, 3rd Battalion, Dublin Brigade. He lived at Barrow Street, Ringsend, Dublin and worked at a train depot.
He was arrested on 23 November 1920 and, on 1 February 1921, he was charged with the death by shooting of Captain GT Baggallay, an army prosecutor who had been a member of courts that sentenced Volunteers to death under the Restoration of Order in Ireland Regulations on Bloody Sunday (1920).
Whelan was defended at his court martial by Michael Noyk, through whom he protested his innocence of the charges. As in the case of Patrick Moran, there was eyewitness evidence that Whelan had been at Mass at the time the shooting took place. The prosecution cast doubt on the reliability of the eyewitnesses, arguing that as Catholics they were not neutral. The defence complained that it was unfair to suggest the witnesses “were prepared to come up and perjure themselves on behalf of the prisoner” because “they belonged to a certain class and might hold certain political opinions”. The court did, however, trust the evidence of an army officer who lived in the same house as Baggallay and who had idenfied Whelan as the man covering him with a revolver during the raid. There was also testimony by a soldier who had passed by the house when he heard shots fired. This witness said he saw Whelan outside, attempting to start his motorcycle. Whelan was found guilty of murder and sentenced to death.
In Mountjoy Gaol, he was imprisoned with the writer and activist Ernie O’Malley, who described him:
“… smooth-faced, quiet and brown eyed with wavy hair; he smiled quietly and steadily. His voice was soft and when he laughed with the others one knew that the fibre was not as hard and that there was a shade of wistfulness about him.”
Another IRA man had named him under torture – possibly thinking that he had an unbreakable alibi – and when Whelan was executed this man lost his wits and remained hopelessly insane.
He was hanged at 6.00 am along with Patrick Moran, the first of six men to be executed that day – the six were executed in twos. A crowd estimated at 40,000 gathered outside the prison to pray as the executions took place. His mother, Bridget, saw him before his execution, and waited outside with the praying crowd holding candles. She told a reporter that she had left her son “so happy and cheerful you would almost imagine he was going to see a football match”.
He was one of a group of men hanged in Mountjoy Prison in the period 1920-1921 who are commonly referred to as The Forgotten Ten. In 2001 he and the other nine, including Kevin Barry, were exhumed from their graves in the prison and given a full state funeral. He is now buried in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin. An annual commemoration is still held in Clifden for him.
Francis Xavier Flood (June 1901 – 14 March 1921), known as Frank, was a 1st Lieutenant in the Dublin Active Service Brigade during the Irish War of Independence.
Flood was the son of a policeman and the 1911 census lists the family living at 15 Emmet Street. He was one of eight brothers, most of whom were heavily involved in the Independence movement. He attended secondary school in O’Connell Schools, Dublin and won a scholarship to study engineering at University College Dublin where he was an active member of UCD’s famous debating forum, the Literary and Historical Society. He passed his first and second year engineering exams with distinction. At the time of his arrest he was living with his family at 30 Summerhill Parade, Dublin.
He was captured, together with Thomas Bryan, Patrick Doyle, Bernard Ryan and Dermot O’Sullivan while attacking a lorry-load of Dublin Metropolitan Police at Drumcondra on 21 January 1921. All of the men were found in possession of arms and a grenade was discovered in Flood’s pocket. On 24 February 1921 Flood was charged by Court-martial, with high treason/levying war against the King, and was one of six men executed by hanging on 14 March 1921 in Mountjoy Jail, Dublin. At nineteen years of age, he was the youngest of the six.
Flood was a close personal friend of Kevin Barry, and asked that he be buried as close as possible to him. He had taken part in the September 1920 ambush during which Barry had been arrested and had been involved in the planning of several aborted attempts to rescue him. Flood would remain buried at Mountjoy Prison, together with nine other executed members of the Irish Republican Army known as The Forgotten Ten, until he was given a state funeral and reburied at Glasnevin Cemetery on 14 October 2001 after an intense campaign led by the National Graves Association.
Students of University College Dublin established the Frank Flood Shield, an annual debating competition, in his memory. Flood and the other five men executed on 14 March 1921 are commemorated in Thomas MacGreevy’s poem “The Six who were Hanged”.
Patrick Moran (13 March 1888 – 14 March 1921) was a grocer’s assistant, trade unionist and member of the Irish Republican Army.
Moran was born in Crossna, County Roscommon. He was the third of eleven children of Bartholemew and Brigid Moran and attended primary school in Crossna before going to work as a grocer’s assistant in Boyle. In 1911 he settled in Dublin.
He was an active member of the G.A.A.. He was involved in the 1913 Dublin Lock-out. He was a member of the Irish Republican Brotherhood and the Irish Volunteers. As Adjutant of D Company, 2nd Battalion of the Dublin section of the Volunteers he fought in the Jacob’s Factory Garrison during the Easter Rising of 1916 under Thomas MacDonagh. In the aftermath of the Rising he was imprisoned at Knutsford Prison and later at Frongoch. He was tried in Wormwood Scrubs and released in July 1916.
In 1917, he was a founder of the Irish National Union of Vintners, Grocers and Allied Trades (now Mandate. He went on to serve as the organisation’s president and chairman of its Kingstown branch.
After his release from internment he became a captain in ‘D’ Company of the 2nd Battalion, Dublin Brigade, IRA. He was arrested on one occasion in 1920 during a strike for better conditions for members of his union and was imprisoned in Mountjoy for two weeks when he refused to take bail as he said he had done no wrong. He was arrested at his place of work on the Friday after Bloody Sunday (1920) and taken to the Bridewell Station. He was transferred two weeks later to Arbour Hill.
While in detention at Arbour Hill Prison, he was subjected to a number of identity parades and was falsely identified as being the man who had held up a motor cyclist outside 38 Mount Street, Dublin where Lieutenant Ames, a suspected intelligence officer was killed. He strongly protested his innocence of involvement in that incident on Bloody Sunday. He claimed he was at Mass in Blackrock (over four miles from the scene of the shooting) at the time. Several witnesses supported this alibi evidence but it was false. However witnesses including the rector of a church attested that the claim by soldier witnesses to have known the time by the chiming of the church bell revealed that the bell had not chimed for years.
He was transferred from Arbour Hill to Kilmainham Jail and incarcerated in what was known as the “Murderers’ Gallery”, two cells away from Ernie O’Malley, with whom he became good friends. On 14 February 1921, Moran, O’Malley and Frank Teeling broke through the padlock of an outer gate of the prison. However Moran refused to take the opportunity to escape as he reportedly felt the authorities would interpret it as an admission of guilt, telling O’Malley “I don’t want to let down the witnesses who gave evidence for me.”
Moran started a concert to distract the guards while the men escaped, with Simon Donnelly taking Moran’s place. The event is related in detail in O’Malley’s memoir On Another Man’s Wound. He was tried the day following the break out in City Hall, Dame Street, Dublin. Moran was convicted of murder three days later and sentenced to be hanged on 14 March 1921. Moran and Thomas Whelan were tried for murder; Francis Flood, Thomas Bryan, Patrick Doyle and Bernard Ryan for high treason. They were all found guilty and sentenced to death. The Archbishop of Dublin spoke out against the sentence.
The Irish National Union of Vintners’ Grocers’ & Allied Trades’ Assistants, of which Moran had been an active member, called a half-day general strike on the morning of the executions and over 40,000 people gathered outside Mountjoy to pray for the six men who were hanged between 6am and 8pm. The townships of Bray, Dún Laoghaire, and Blackrock closed down, with the municipal flags flying at half-mast, on the day of his hanging, with masses said in all churches every hour from 6am to noon. All branches of the post office throughout Ireland stopped work.
In 1961 a park was opened in Moran’s memory in Dún Laoghaire. In May 2012, the park was closed to the public as work commenced on the remvoal of the bowling green, and the construction of a library and cultural centre.
He is one of a group of men hanged in Mountjoy Prison in the period 1920-1921 commonly referred to as The Forgotten Ten. In 2001 he and the other nine, including Kevin Barry, were exhumed from their graves in the prison and given a full State Funeral. He is now buried in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin.
Patrick Doyle was one of six men hanged in Mountjoy Prison on the morning of 14 March 1921. He was aged 29 and lived at St. Mary’s Place, Dublin. He was one of The Forgotten Ten.
Doyle was involved in an arms raid on Collinstown Aerodrome in 1919. Together with Frank Flood, he was involved in planning several attempts to free Kevin Barry from Mountjoy in the days before Barry’s own execution in November 1920. Flood would later be hanged on the same morning as Doyle.
Arrest, detention and execution
Doyle was a member of ‘F’ Company, 1st Battalion, Dublin Brigade, Irish Republican Army and was tried on 24 February 1921 by court-martial, charged with high treason and levying war against the King for his part in an attempted ambush at Drumcondra on 21 January that year.
He was a carpenter and married with four children. His wife gave birth to twins shortly before his death, one of whom died on 12 March. Reportedly, she caught a chill returning from a visit to the prison. Doyle’s brother Seán was killed in action at the Custom House six weeks after the execution.
He is one of a group of men hanged in Mountjoy Prison in the period 1920-1921 commonly referred to as The Forgotten Ten. In 2001 he and the other nine, including Kevin Barry and Frank Flood, were exhumed from their graves in the prison and given a full State Funeral. He is now buried in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin.
With many thanks to: Clan na Gael
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