James Fox – a pension refused

James Fox, a veteran of the Easter Rising, serving in Saint Stephen’s Green and the Royal College of Surgeons, Dublin under the command of Michael Mallin. He subsequently served with the National Forces between June and October 1922.

However, in October 1927, he was refused a certificate of service, and consequently a pension, by the direction of the Minister for Defence, Desmond Fitzgerald T.D. Fox had been dismissed from the National Army in October 1922 on the instructions of the Director of Intelligence. This dismissal followed his arrest on the 15 September 1922, while acting as Adjutant of Maryboro (Portlaoise) Military Prison, “due to suspicions regarding trafficking with prisoners”. However, in a letter of 29th August 1927 from the Director of Intelligence to Department of Defence the former refers to the use by Fox of “licentious” and “outrageous language” in letters written by Fox to his wife. These letters, which were seized during a search of Fox’s home following his arrest, had “a very considerable influence in the decision to dismiss Fox from the Army” as “…it was considered that Fox was not a proper person to hold such an important position in the Army”.

Furthermore the Director of Intelligence considered the possibility that Fox may have been innocent of the formal charge against him. Under the Military Service Pensions Act, 1924 Fox would have been eligible for a pension of just over 5 years’ service or £25 per year. Instead his pension application was denied.

Letter re James Fox's dismissal.
Letter from Colonel F Mac Enrí to Commandant Hegarty regarding Fox’s dismissal.

For full details see Fox’s pension application James Fox please use the links below.

Application file 1924 Act 24SP10468

Application file 1934 Act MSP34REF21650

Supporting file 34SP21626