SOLD Hammer price €500
“Letters from Flanders”
Meagher (Henry, descendant of the Young Irelander T.F. Meagher of Waterford). A very good collection of eleven autograph signed letters and cards to (Edmund) Downey of Waterford, 1908 – 1916, including nine pencilled letters and cards from the Flanders trenches where he was serving with the First Northumbrian Brigade, B.E.F., 1916 – 16, datelined ‘n the Field’ ‘Mud View, Flanders,’ etc., including a seven page letter dated 16 August 1915, also a photo card showing Meagher in battle dress.
Meagher’s first letter, 27 Nov. 1908, from his home in Newcastle-on-Tyne, evidently in response to an enquiry from Downey, lists works relating to T.F. Meagher in his possession, and gives details of other relatives who may have materials of interest.
His second letter, April 1909, is written in his professional capacity as a cement supplier and makes some cogent points about the new Waterford bridge.
A card dated 1914 carries a photo showing him in uniform, and the remainder of the correspondence comes form Flanders. His long letter of August 1915 gives news of the German attack using chlorine gas and the subsequent 2nd Battle of Ypres. ‘The infantry of our division.. lost heavily, but never flinched from gun, rifle or gas attack. It certainly was a most severe baptism of fire.. I went right forward with the small arms section of my ammunition column and had to supply ammunition for the trenches taking it through Ypres which was pretty well like a burning volcano, dead horses & men lying in every street, broken wagons, carts etc. lying everywhere, troops being rushed forwards, wounded being brought back, & the never ceasing roar of guns & bursting of shells..’ There are further harrowing eyewitness details of the intense fighting and shelling, and an evocative description of exhausted soldiers attending Mass having come straight from the trenches. ‘mud from head to foot, uniforms stained & torn, unshaved & unwashed…’
An important collection. (1)
Provenance: E. Downey.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €550
A Nurse Under Fire
Smithson, Annie M.P. A long A.L.s. (7pp two folded sheets) to (Edmund) Downey, from Dublin, 14 July 1922, containing a vivid description of her experiences under fire as a Red Cross nurse with Republican forces during the evacuation of Moran’s Hotel in Dublin, in early July 1922, with a further 9 letters and cards, 1923 – 27. ‘I was in Moran’s Hotel till we evacuated on July 2nd – & then we evacuated into Marlborough St. We had travelled from Moran’s into several of the other houses & as each house was falling we retreated into the next. Fortunately we had already sent our badly wounded away. In the last house we had to lie on our faces saying the Rosary & waiting for the mine to go off – expecting to go off with it!.. We got out into the street then – just the Red Cross contingent, the others having gone on, & made our way to Marlboro’ St where our men had retreated. We carried the Red Cross Flag and were only handful of medical workers but the Free Staters fired deliberately at us & I don’t know how we escaped. From Marlboro’ St we got into the Gresham which was a great scene that night,with all our men & leaders..’
She was then sent to Sligo, but was arrested in Mullingar and sent under guard in a Free State van, which was fired on in mistake by other Free State troops. ‘A perfect fusillade of bullets pattered round us like hailstones, & crouching in the car we gave ourselves up for lost. When at last [the driver] slowed down it was found that the man who was inside with us as a guard was shot dead..’
With a second A.L.s., 14.4.23, enclosing a m.s. ‘which may be suitable for Green & Gold. ‘I have been raided & was going to be arrested. They then changed their minds & said they would return again. A pleasure in store I suppose!; and a further 8 letters and cards, 1923 – 27, mostly concerning her writings.
* Annie Smithson, from a Protestant background in Dublin, converted to Catholicism and joined Cumann na mBan. She was a Red Cross worker with Republican forces through the Civil War, and later helped to organise the Irish Nurses Organisation. She published 20 novels, many of them very successful.
The present letters appear to be unpublished. (2)
Provenance: Downey Archive.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €100
Republican Bulletins. A file containing a Proclamation of the (Republican) Dail Eireann, 14 March 1923, purporting to close places of entertainment at a time of national mourning; in Irish and English; and a selection of Republican War bulletins,copies of The Fenian, Daily Bulletin and a few others,w.a.f. As a collection. (1)More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €60
“The Ross Circular” A printed copy of a circular inviting Irish people to give information against the I.R.A. by writing under cover to D.W. Ross at a Poste Restant address in London (circa 1921), offering a reward.
With a small selection of other documents,including a copy of the Irish Council Bill (1907); Prospectus of Irish Press (1928); and Memorandum of Association of Freeman’s Journal, 1887. (1)
Provenance: Collection of E. Downey.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €260
1916 & P.H. Pearse: A bundle of Ephemera and ptd. items relating primarly to P.H. Pearse, to include an original black and white photograph of both P.H. & Willie Pearse in an oval shape, mounted on card, also “An Macaomh” Vol. 1 No. 1, Midsummer 1929, illus. & adverts, and also a facsimile copy of a m/ss school report from Saint Enda’s, a very comprehensive small scrap album, copy book relating to the 1916 rising, as a collection, w.a.f. (4)
Provenance: Mr. Dermot Mc Carthy (Student of Scoil Eanna) to the present vendor.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €750
Pearse’s Scarcest Publication
Pearse, P.H. An Barr Buadh. Iml. 1 Uimhir 1 – 9, Marta-Bealtaine 1912, lacking only No. 7. Folio, each 4pp (single folded sheet). A weekly periodical entirely in Irish, edited and published by Pearse and mostly written by him. Other contributors include Eamonn Ceannet. Eamon O’Tuathail, Peadar O Maolain, Padraic O Conaire, Cathal Ua Seanain (O’Shannon), and a few others. Also includes the celebrated series of ‘Beart Litreach de Chuaidh Amugha’ (i.e. ‘open letters’ to various Irish personalities), signed Leagh Mac Rianghabhra (i.e. a pen name for Pearse). The last of these letters, in No. 9, is addressed to Perase himself, and it concludes, ‘Is maith an gniomh do rinnis an uair do chuiris Scoil Eanna ar bun v.. No Chomhaile dhuit: tabhair aire do Scoil Eanna agus, do Scoil Ide agus nab ac a thuille le cursaibh polaitiochta. Ta do dhothain mor ar d’aire ’ (‘You did well to found St. Enda’s.. My advice to you: Take care of St. Enda’s and St. Ita’s and take no further head of political affairs. You have more than enough to do ’
Sound advice, perhaps; how would Irish history have developed if he had followed it? Impossible to say.
Pearse edited the Gaelic League newspaper An Claidheamh Soluis from 1903 to 1909, when he resigned to devote his time to St. Enda’s; but evidently he felt a need for a public platform, and in 1912 he began issuing ‘An Barr Buadh,’ taking its name from the horn Fionn Mac Cumhaill sounded to summon his men. Its purpose, as outlined in the first number, was ‘chum misneach Gaedheal do mhuscailt’ (‘to encourage the Gael.’). Its message was openly revolutionary. ‘Eireochaidh Gaedhil aris, agus claoidhfear aris iad muna mbid ullamh chum eirghe. Bidis ullamh. Gabhaidis airm chuca. Nior baineadh an teaoirse amach in aoin chrich foe acht de ghoin chIaidhimh.’ (‘The Gael will rise again, and they will be defeated again unless they are ready. Let them be ready. Let them take arms. No country has ever won its freedom except by the sword.’)
A remarkable publication, combining Pearse’s revolutionary zeal with an element of wit expressed in the ‘open letters’. It was issued in small numbers, and good sets are exceptionally scarce. It is believed that the present set was a gift for Pearse himself to a West of Ireland friend and colleague. (1)More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €1000
Pearse (P.H.) 1916 Leader and Headmaster of Sgoil Eanna
A very good autograph signed Letter, 3pp (single foldeld sheet), on Sgoil Eanna notepaper, dated 20th Oct. 1913, to a Reverend Mother (not named), concerning a dramatization of Pearse’s story ‘An Sagart.’ ‘Please thank your Preparatory children for me, and tell them I must get our Preparatory to try their hand at dramatization now, for hitherto have written the plays for them. Boys must not let girls beat them: He also discusses a dramatized version of ‘Iosagan’, published in ‘An Macoamh’ but not out of print, and offers to lend her a copy; and his latest play ‘An Ri,’ in No. 4 of ‘An Macaomh’ ‘which however would not be suitable for performance by girls. I must write a play with a girl heroine. I have an idea for one in my mind, but am too busy to work it out. ‘Your pupils might be interested in the enclosed photos [not present] of our Passion Play. The girl who represented the Blessed Virgin was Mary Bulfin, a daughter of the late William Bulfin.’
With a good signature. A charming Letter, showing Pearse as an educationalist and writer rather than as a revolutionary. (1)More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €5500
Pearse (P.H.) B.A., Barrister-At-Law.
The Fianna of Fionn. An original manuscript essay of 21 numbered pages, 8vo, in Pearse’s hand throughout, with numerous corrections and crossings-out, evidently his corrected first draft.
Undated, but evidently written circa 1913 – 14, around the time of the founding of the Irish Volunteers, and possibly intended for inclusion in some publication relating to the Fianna or the Volunteers. It opens, ‘The Fianna of to-day are the third heroic companionship that has borne that famous name. The first Fianna, the Fianna of Fionn, have been dead for nearly two thousand years; a few grey-haired men, the veterans of the second Fianna, are with us still, and any boy who has seen and spoken to one of these will carry a great memory with him through life, for there have never been nobler or braver men in Ireland than they The lads of the third Fianna, the familiar green-shirted bare-kneed young soldiers who have prepared the way for our Irish Volunteers, inherit the gallant name and tradition of the ancient Fianna and the mighty purpose of the modern Fenians. Were ever boys heirs to as great an inheritance? And continuing with a retelling of the story of Fionn and the Fianna from Irish mythology. With signature on final page.
A little foxing, otherwise in excellent condition.
To the best of our knowledge, unpublished and unrecorded. Ofthe first importance.
Provenance: From the collection of a distinguished scholar of Pearse’s work. (1)More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €500
Signed Pres. Copy, by Signatory of 1916 Proclamation
Mac Donagh (Thomas) Songs of Myself, 8vo D. 1910. First Edn., orig. cloth. V. Scarce.
* Signed by, author in Irish to ‘Tomas Mac Liam, Sagairt, 25.T.1911.’ (1)More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €3400
The Last Truce
(Gen.) Owen O’Duffy and Liam Lynch
An important typescript document (carbon copy), signed by both O’Duffy and Lynch, with amendments in O’Duffy’s hand, dated 4 May 1922, providing for a Truce (between pro and anti – Treaty forces) from 4 p.m. on that day to 4 p.m. on Monday 8 May, ‘with a view to giving representatives of both sections of the Army an immediate opportunity to discover a basis for Army unification,’ and providing that
1. All operations except training and ordinary Army routine will cease,
2. All penetrative re-organisation will cease;
3. Both sections will co-operate to maintain order and prevent acts of aggression against person and property.
With a second document, entirely in O’Duffy’s hand and with the same two signatures, dated 6-V-(19)22, ordering ‘an open continuance of the Truce .. with a view to allowing the Army and Dail Committees to bring their work to completion.’
These are documents of the first importance, recording the last significant attempt to resolve the differences over the Treaty by discussion and agreement. Owen (Eoin) O’Duffy was at that time Chief of Staff of the newly established Free State Army, responsible to the Provisional Government; Liam Lynch was chief of staff of the so-called ‘Headquarters,’ section of the IRA, appointed at a convention in March 1922, which repudiated the authority of the Minister for Defence. He disapproved of the action by some Dublin units to occupy the Four Courts on 14 April, but later joined the garrison there just before the Free State attack.
Attempts were made in late April and early May 1922 to bridge the differences between the two Army executives, and a joint Dail Committee was set up after an address by Sean O’Hegarty of Cork with the support of Dan Breen and other Southern Officers. But these efforts did not lead to success. The report of the Dail Committee was inconclusive, and eventually the pressure on the Provisional Government became too great, and on 28 June they opened fire on the Four Courts Garrison. The Civil War followed, and within a few months Liam Lynch and many others were dead.
Provenance: O’Duffy ArchiveMore details ›
SOLD Hammer price €4250
A Memento of Michael Collins
(Collins, Michael) A collection of Irish Volunteers “IV” (Irish Army) Uniform brass Buttons (in two sizes).
* With an autograph signed covering note to General (Eoin) O’Duffy from M. [Margaret] Collins Powell (sister of Michael Collins), ‘Please send me a receipt for the enclosed, found in Michael’s tunic pocket, August 22nd 1922,’ (the day of Collins’ death), the note dated 27.1.33. Presumably sent to Gen. O’Duffy as a memento.
Provenance: O’Duffy Archive.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €5000
‘I AM SO MISERABLE AND ALONE’
Lavery (Lady Hazel) A moving series of three A.L.S. and a telegram to Gen. Eoin O’Duffy, July-August 1927, expressing her grief at the death of Kevin O’Higgins (shot dead by Republicans in early July).
The telegram, indistinctly dated July 1927, asks O’Duffy to bring the box of flowers she has sent him (with a letter) ‘to Mansion House and place near Kevin O’Higgins’.
The first letter, dated simply ‘Monday, is evidently that enclosed with the flowers. ‘I know you were near him at the last, and I think you will do me a great favour because he would wish you to. If you can, will you put one of these flowers somewhere near to him – even a tiny blossom, it would comfort me. He gave me this little brooch of white heather, and I would love to have him go on his journey with it from me. I am only asking you because I am so miserable and alone. I saw him all day on Thursday, and this morning I had a letter from him; written on Saturday. It is all such a cruel cruel thing – for us all and our Ireland
The second letter, dated July 27th, ’27, says ‘We are not going to Ireland as I have been rather ill, and when the time came I found I could not bear the idea of going there’, though she wanted to ask, ‘if you were able to put the white heather brooch anywhere near him – I know it seemed a strange thing to ask – but there was no one else I could trust and I thought you might just tuck it in quietly somewhere near his hand where no one would ever see. I have heard absolutely nothing – as I knew would be the case – no message, nothing – but some little things of mine which were in his ? have been sent back without a word. I understand, and it doesn’t matter nothing does now’.
The third letter, August 6th, ’27, repeats her thanks. Your help and swift understanding seemed to melt the ice around my heart. I’ve felt frozen in misery and utterly alone. I still feel that to someone, sometime during those hours of shadow, he must have spoken of me – said a word for me – some word I would have known and understood – but I realise the difficulty – there was no one he could tell near him except you perhaps, and you were not alone. I find myself looking for his letter every morning – for the past months he has written me practically every day – and then comes that sickening of the cruel implacable truth – and the black emptiness of left engulfs me again ..’
The tone of these letters suggests strongly that O’Duffy was aware of Lady Lavery’s passionate affair with Kevin O’Higgins in the final months of his life, although it is not widely known at the time, or indeed until recently when Sinead McCoole published extracts from O’Higgins’ letters in her biography of Hazel Lavery. O’Higgins was of course a married man.
With the printed Senate Proceedings for 12-13 July 1927, ‘Assassination and Funeral of the Vice-President [Kevin O’Higgins],’ O’Duffy’s copies.
A poignant and moving collection.
PROVENANCE : O’DUFFY ARCHIVEMore details ›
SOLD Hammer price €580
A.L.S. to General O’Duffy from the Spanish Carlist aristocrat Count de Ramirez de Ortellano, 8pp, 4 August 1936, from Orielton Palace in Pembrokeshire, reminding him that ‘my country Spain is in the thralls of a most terrific death-struggle, trying to free itself from the terrible and vile Communist & Marxist rule,’ and asking if ‘it might be possible to raise in Ireland a purely volunteer force to come and aid us, and join in with our armies. It would have to be purely personally voluntary, so as to avoid all possibility of international complications.. (and) should be placed under the Carlist command.’
With carbon copy of O’Duffy’s reply, 7 August 1936, cautiously indicating agreement in principle subject to various issues, and proposing a meeting in London; a second A.L.S. from Oriellano, 12 August, suggesting a meeting at Claridges; and what purports to be a manuscript copy of a letter to Ortellano from Cardinal Mac Rory, Cardinal Primate of Ireland, 6 August 1936, in response to an enquiry, giving Ortellano Gen. O’Duffy’s address and saying ‘He seems to be the man who would be most likely to help.. He is a chivalrous, courageous, upright man, & a good Catholic, & above all a fine organiser.’
These letters establish beyond doubt the agency whereby O’Duffy was induced to raise a brigade for Spain, and Cardinal Mac Rory’s part in the matter. They are briefly mentioned in Mc Garry’s biography of O’Duffy, from a secondary source (Walsh’s memoir), and are otherwise unpublished. O’Duffy’s caution in responding to Oretllano’s first letter is notable; while enthusiastic, he was not rushing blindly into the Spanish cauldron.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €1700
Three long A.L.S. from O’Duffy at the Spanish front to Capt. Walsh in Ireland, dated respectively 2.3.37, 22.3.37, 12.5.37, about 25 pages folio in all; the manuscript Unit Diary of “A” Coy (Irish Brigade) from its departure from Caceres (17.2.37) to 25 April 1937, with daily details of positions, actions, casualties etc., about 18pp, stamped and signed by Padraig Quinn Capt.; manuscript Report on Disposition of “A” Coy, 20.2.37, from D. O’Suilleabhain Capt., O/C; m/ss. Report on Incident outside Village of Ciempozuelos on 19.2.37, signed Geo. B. Timlin Lieut., “A” coy (5pp); also a typescript document (14 pp, carbon copy) entitled ‘With the Irish Brigade in Spain,’ by John C. Maguire, ex cpl (‘Jay Sceamm’).
The record of O’Duffy’s Brigade in Spain is described in generally negative terms in Mc Garry’s recent biography, discounting much of O’Duffy’s claims in his published Crusade in Spain. The letters to Walsh in this file show O’Duffy’s immediate reaction on the spot to his difficulties, rather than his later recollections, and may offer material for a reassessment. There is a great deal of detail and much interesting comment, of which we select only a few points:
(2.3.37) ‘I cannot deal fully with the circumstances of the death [from ‘friendly fire’] of poor Tom Hyde & young Tuite [Chute] – except to say that Tom died bravely leading his men. He got a burst of machine gun fire in the neck cutting the jugular vein – he died in a few minutes, but thanks to be God the priest was near by and he had the consolations of the Church, moreover he was a weekly Communicant.. Young Tuite of Kerry was a good boy also – sent home all his savings for Masses.. Cur Bandera is now in the front firing line – shells falling all around them – last Thursday 58 shells fell on our trenches in 22 mins.. I believe we are now over the worst. We are simply holding our position until the big attack beings on Madrid When it does begin it will not last more than 10 days – & then the war is practically over. We will be in the final assault, but unless we are very unfortunate we should have few if any causalities.. I can get through no officer work at the front, and the Volunteers want me to be with them all the time. This is also my desire, and my position is almost impossible. When Tom Hyde was killed there was gloom in the Irish ranks. I arrived five minutes afterwards, and the gloom was turned immediately into cheers. The trouble is that Caceres is so far away and to get to the front I have to pass through violent red territory. The Red battery in this part is ‘Death to O’Duffy.’ I do not mind death any more now than in the past, & I feel I must lead the boys here.. The Free State Govt. approached his [illegible] Majesty’s Got to ask me ‘as an act of Grace’ to send home young O’Connor of Tralee and to induce him to agree to go home. I am inclined to release him if they pay the expenses.. It shows the close and friendly relations existing between Dev & [the English Prime Minister] Mc Donald. They are working in cordial co-operation. Since then I have received representations from the Irish Minister to the Communist Gt. Of Spain to release a number of others under 21 years of age on the grounds that if they met with an accident here it might embarrass his (the Fianna Fail) Gvt. I have ignored Mr. Kearney’s appeal which came to me through Gen. Franco.’
‘It was very fortunate that we had not 300 causalities on 13th March [when the Irish brigade was ordered to take the village of Titulcia on the far bank of the Jarama River.] Our men had absolutely no cover in the advance, the Reds got their range, over 1500 shells were dropped on our lines over a period of 11 hours and for the first time in the history of this was not a Red shell failed to explode. To add to it all the rain came down in bucketful’s, soaking the poor boys through. But their spirit never wavered, and such skill and resource was seldom before seen on a battlefield. I was provided with a safe observation post with the Col. in charge of the section, but at 9 a.m. I could stand it no longer and I went down to my men.. My arrival at the front on the morning of 14 March saved our Bandera from annihilation – I cannot write details, & can only say thanks be to God [it appears he secured permission to cancel the advance].
‘cannot write details, & can only say thanks be to God [it appears he secured permission to cancel the advance].
‘You sent a Miss Fraser here. Lest this letter fall into other hands I cannot say much – except that she is being left at the frontier. She has caused me much annoyance, and disgrace to our Brigade. She knows nothing about nursing and has been under arrest since her arrival, having got mixed up with undesirable Italian officers ’
‘The phone is ringing.. poor old Gabe Lee is dead. When I was leaving him yesterday he tried to raise his hand in the Fascist salute.. ‘Germany makes no secret of it here, that even one Irish Bandera here is big propaganda for Hitler – Ireland is fighting in the same cause as German.. The German Officers and even the rank and file could not be more friendly..’
There are full details of wounded and repatriated soldiers, much about the Brigade’s financial problems, references to various people in whom he is disappointed (including a person from Bray, un-named) and (in the first letter especially) appeals for more men to be sent over, so that the Brigade can form a reserve.
The letters convey a powerful sense of immediacy, of the closeness of the fighting, and of the intense pressure on O’Duffy from all sides. There are many interesting but elliptical references, which it may be possible for scholars to elucidate.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €300
Various documents relating to the Irish Brigade in Spain, generally in Spanish, with copy replies in English from O’Duffy, including a T.L.S. in Spanish from Archbishop Goma of Toledo to O’Duffy, 29.5.1939; with a copy of O’Duffy’s reply; a safe-conduct in Spanish issued to O’Duffy, 16.2.37; a printed Address to the Brigade, Lisbon, 26 Nov. 1936, etc.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €900
Important Documents, Truce & Treaty
A collection of important documents relating to the Anglo-Irish Truce and Treaty, which presumably evidently came into Gen. O’Duffy’s hands as Army Chief of Staff and / or his membership of the Supreme Council of the I.R.B. including:
a. A three page cyclostyled document marked SECRET, end of Sept. 1921, unsigned but giving the views of the (British) General Officer Commanding-in-Chief [General Macready] for communication to Commanders of all (British) formations and units, ‘to study and think over.. so that they can be prepared to face somewhat new conditions should the Conference now taking place (i.e. the Treaty talks) “fail to bear fruit” and active rebellion break out again.
The memo states that ‘three months ago the Rebel organisation throughout the country was in a precarious condition, and the future from the Sinn Fein point of view may be said to have been well-nigh desperate (sic). The Flying Columns and active service units.. we’re being harried and chased from pillar to post.. the internment camps were rapidly filling up the Headquarters of the I.R.A. was functioning under the greatest difficulty.. Such were the conditions on the 11th July, and it is small wonder that the rebel leaders grasped at the straw that was offered and agreed to negotiations accompanied by cessation of activities on both sides.’ It goes on to describe extensive I.R.A. recruitment during the Truce, the arrival of a number of Thompson sub-machine guns and the organisation of machine-gun squads. ‘Such a weapon cannot be ignored, and plans must be made’ (to deal with them). ‘Cases will probably occur which will admit the employment of weapons on our side which have not hitherto been used in Ireland, such as field guns, trench mortars and bombs from aeroplanes..’
A rare and most interesting document.
b. Scheme for City and County Authorities in Connection with Defence of Ulster. Typescript document, carbon copy, 4pp, outlining what are essentially provisions for a military government of the Ulster counties, to provide for ‘the defence of Ulster from hostile invasion.’ With a covering letter from (?) Sally Flood addressed to Prime Minister, Min. for Home Affairs, City Commandant, etc., another rare and remarkable document, apparently mid-1921.
c. Military Travel Permits. Instructions for Civil Police in Ireland, dated 1 Oct. 1921, 2pp cyclostyled, marked Confidential, for use of Police only.
d. The Organisation and the New Political Situation in Ireland. Statement (issued to I.R.B. members) by order, Supreme Council (I.R.B.), January 12th, 1922. One age, cyclostyled typescript. This is the I.R.B.’s second statement on the Treaty, repeating its original view that the Treaty should be ratified, but pointing out ‘in order to avoid misrepresentation’ that the first statement was issued only for the information of T.D.’s who are members of the organisation, and they were free to act as they wished in the matter of voting for or against the Treaty. A rare document, who influence on the Treaty debate is still a matter for discussion.
e. Murders in North-East Ulster. An important T.L.S. on Dail notepaper form R. Ua Maolcatha, Aire Chosanta (signed initials) to ‘Ceann Fuirinne’ (Chief of Staff, ie. Eoin O’Duffy), stating that ‘the Government’s policy in connection with the murders occurring subsequent to the Pact is that they shall press for an Inquiry into these, up to the breaking point,’ and that it is essential to re-establish communication at once with the British Military Border Commission, and asking O’Duffy to instruct Ward (Dr. Conn Ward) accordingly, etc., an important letter.
* A very important Collection. (1)More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €900
O’Duffy’s Appointment as Garda Commissioner, 1922
A typescript copy of Kevin O’Higgins’ letter (as Minister of Home Affairs) to Gen. Mulcahy, Commader-in-Chief, making his ‘astonishing’ request for Gen. Owen O’Duffy to be released from his Army position to take up the Chief Commissionership of the Civic Guard (An Garda Siochana), 1.9.22, with a signed typescript copy of O’Duffy’s letter, also to the Commander-in-Chief, 4 Sept. 1922, from Field HQ in Limerick, leaving the decision to Gen. Mulcahy and the Government. ‘I am prepared to serve in any capacity that I can be of most value.’
O’Higgins letter outlines in graphic terms the difficulties with the Garda force to date. ‘Conspirators working from the outside with a few Agents within, vanity and jealousy on the part of some Officers, and an absence of tact and coolness on the part of others have combined to create a situation which calls for firm handling by some outstanding personality whose National record is of the highest.’
Astonishing it may have seemed, but it was an inspired choice. Within a few years O’Duffy had succeeded in establishing the Gardai as a respected and unarmed force. (1)More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €360
A very good A.L.S. form W.T. Cosgrave to Gen. O’Duffy, 1 July 1932, on Dail Eireann notepaper, form his home address in Templeogue, congratulating the General ‘on my own behalf as well as that of my colleagues, and through you the Garda, for the magnificent work they so well performed during the Eucharistic Congress.’
With Gen. O’Duffy’s copy of the Handbook of the Eucharistic Congress, with his signature. [As well as heading the Garda, O’Duffy was Chief Marshal of the Congress.]More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €425
Removal from Commissionership
A very good T.L.S. from William T. Cosgrave, on his headed personal notepaper, 25 Feb. 1933, to General O’Duffy, ‘I find it difficult to express in words my regret that your Office as Commissioner of the Garda Siohana has been terminated. The splendid traditions which distinguished your association with that disciplined, efficient and brave body of men will ever be remembered with affection, gratitude and satisfaction by the patriotic citizens of this State, You were father, guardian, counsellor and confidant of the officers and men under your charge.’
With the printed report of the Dail debates on 14-16 March 1933, concerning O’Duffy’s removal (by the Fianna Fail government headed by De Valera), some sections underlined by O’Duffy; also a page from O’Duffy’s desk diary for February 1933, with a note of his meeting with President (de Valera), when he was informed of the decision to remove him from the Commissionership; seven pages of manuscript notes in O’Duffy’s hand concerning his removal; correspondence about the seizure of Gen. O’Duffy’s revolver, 1934, etc; and a collection of related press cuttings.More details ›
SOLD Hammer price €250
Eamon de Valera – “Thanks but No Thanks”
Two T.L.S. from De Valera to Gen. O’Duffy, on Dail Eireann notepaper, dated 6 June and 12 August 1940, noting offers from O’Duffy of ‘service to the Government in the present emergency,’ thanking him for his offers, but not accepting them.More details ›