Women in Intelligence – Part 3: Minnie Lenihan

In the final blog of our three part series on Women in Intelligence (Annie Smith and Eileen MacCarvill), we focus on Galway woman Minnie Lenihan who was primarily involved in getting vital information in and out of prisons in the Galway area, as well as addressing prison conditions and prisoner treatment.  Minnie joined the Galway…

Women in Intelligence – Part 2: Eileen MacCarvill née McGrane

Following on from a previous blog article relating to the intelligence work of Dubliner Annie Smith covering the period from the War of Independence through to the end of 1923, this blog features the case of another Dublin based woman, Eileen MacCarvill (née McGrane) who, like Smith, also worked closely with Michael Collins. MacCarvill moved…

Women in Intelligence – Part 1: Annie Mary Smith née Brennan

Over the course of processing and cataloguing the records of thousands of individuals in the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection (MSPC) it has become very clear that the type of work and indeed a little bit of luck factored in to the likelihood of an individual’s service being fully recognised. Those working alongside fellow IRA…

The international gun-running exploits of James Joseph Baskerville

James Joseph Baskerville was active with the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Republican (IRA) from late 1916 until May 1923. His attempts to source guns for the IRA in the 1919-22 period brought him to a minimum of seven different cities across four countries and three continents. It is these fascinating three years abroad that…

Altnaveigh Reprisal

Included in the May 2018 release from the MSPC are the files of some of those individuals involved in one of the most infamous attacks carried out in the border area in the revolutionary period. The attacks at Altnaveigh, County Armagh on 17 June 1922 by the IRA in which six members of the protestant…

Deciphering the Archives

In previous blogs on this site, the focus has naturally been on the records of the Military Service Pensions Collection, the people they represent and the events therein described. While the work of the archivists behind the scenes can sometimes be overlooked, the obstacles and challenges they face, when acknowledged, can lead to an even…

International Connections in the MSPC

The Military Service Pensions Collection (MSPC) contains files relating to a number of individuals active in the Republican Movement during the Revolutionary period (1916-1923) who were either born outside of Ireland or had non-Irish parentage. They include Robert Briscoe (1894-1969) whose Jewish parents emigrated to Dublin from Lithuania; Captain Louis Marie (1900-1957) whose father was…

The case of Mrs Lindsay

To General Strickland, Victoria Barracks, Cork We are holding Mrs Lindsay and her chauffeur, James Clarke prisoners. They have been convicted as spies and are under sentence of death. If the five of our men taken at Godfrey’s Cross are executed on Monday morning they will be shot immediately. I enclose a personal appeal from…

Recognition of Easter Rising service

At 7pm on Easter Sunday 23 April 1916 the members of Portlaoise Company, Irish Volunteers under the command of Eamon Fleming mobilised as part of the plan for a nationwide rising. Their job was to attack rail lines in their area linking the south east to Dublin and thereby delay any British forces arriving from…

Negligence and the Army Pensions Act

The introduction of the Army Pensions Act in 1923 enabled the dependents of the deceased to lodge a claim for compensation. For a case to be successful under the Army Pensions Acts it first had to pass certain criteria. These included: membership of an accepted organisation; death due to  active service; killed or wounded in…