Decade of Centenaries

30 November 2022
The assassination of Sir Henry Wilson

Ronan McGreevy is a journalist and videographer with The Irish Times. He is the author of the book ‘Wherever the Firing Line Extends: Ireland and the Western Front’ 1. McGreevy is the editor of Centenary, Ireland remembers 1916 the official State book recalling the commemorations of 2016. He is the author of the recently published, […]

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5 October 2022
Sibhialta Atá mé -  Civil I am

Westmeath County Council, as part of its Decade of Centenaries programme, welcomes a new exhibition of photos from the Irish Civil War. Titled ‘Civil I Am’, the exhibition showcases around 40 images from the conflict, all collected from various archives and libraries. Curated by Galway-based historian Damien Quinn, the exhibition was recently displayed in Galway’s […]

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5 September 2022
The guerrilla phase of the Irish Civil War

In the second of two articles, guest contributor Dr. John O’Callaghan explains how the anti-Treaty IRA responded to the victories won by the National Army during the early weeks of the Civil War. The opening phase of the Civil War was characterised by large-scale, fixed-position, conventional confrontations between the pro-Treaty National Army and the anti-Treaty […]

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30 August 2022
The conventional phase of the Irish Civil War

Dr John O’Callaghan, our latest guest contributor, provides an overview of the fighting during the early stages of the Civil War. The opening, conventional phase of the Civil War was characterised by large-scale confrontations between the anti-Treaty IRA and the pro-Treaty National Army in the summer of 1922, after which the National Army had established […]

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22 August 2022
‘Tragedy and Shame’: the death of Michael Collins

by Ian Kenneally ‘A thrill of horror’, according to the Westmeath Independent, ‘of shame, of despair, of the deepest distress went through the length and breadth of our land on Wednesday morning last when it was learned that General Michael Collins had been shot dead in Cork. Another great Irishman is gone; another great loss has […]

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17 August 2022
A divided town: part two

Ian Kenneally In the previous article, we explored the circumstances that led to the shooting dead of George Adamson in April 1922. Here, we look in more detail at the subsequent propaganda battle in which both pro- and anti-Treaty forces blamed each other for Adamson’s death. That propaganda battle began with, as discussed in the […]

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11 August 2022
A divided town: part one

In an earlier edition of the blog we discussed the shooting dead of George Adamson in April 1922. In that article, Dr John Gibney described Adamson’s career and the local reaction to Adamson’s death. It was an event that shocked people in Westmeath and nationally. Here, we look in more detail at the subsequent propaganda battle in which both pro- and anti-Treaty forces blamed each other for Adamson’s death.

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2 August 2022
A Shooting in Custume Barracks

by Ian Kenneally During the Irish Civil War, Custume Barracks served both as a headquarters for the Provisional Government’s National Army and as a vast prison for captured members of the anti-Treaty IRA. Although Custume Barracks briefly housed prisoners in April 1922 following the shooting dead of George Adamson, it was not until the summer […]

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18 July 2022
Laurence Ginnell’s civil war propaganda

by Dr Paul Hughes In one of the sitting TDs for Longford-Westmeath, Laurence Ginnell, anti-Treaty republicans had a powerful propagandist in their camp after the outbreak of civil war. A veteran of the Irish Press Agency, the publicity arm of Irish nationalists in Britain set up during the late 1880s, Ginnell put his experience to […]

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14 July 2022
The first week of the Irish Civil War in Westmeath: part two

by Dr. Paul Highes Athlone and south Westmeath Reports of the outbreak of civil war published by the Westmeath Independent were redolent of those sensational and bewildered paragraphs which appeared in the Westmeath Examiner in the wake of the 1916 rising. ‘No news and too much rumour’ read one headline, while another column carried eyewitness reports of the fighting […]

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