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British Army intelligence in provincial Ireland, 1919‒1921: organisation, outcomes and the 6th Division blacklist

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 February 2024

Andy Bielenberg
University College, Cork
John Borgonovo*
University College, Cork
*School of History, University College, Cork,;


Intelligence played a critical role in the Irish War of Independence, though debate remains about the effectiveness of British information-gathering. Historians have focused largely on the intelligence war in Dublin. This article examines British Army intelligence in the 6th Division area (roughly the southern third of the island). It will contextualise British military intelligence before the conflict and traces the slow development of an intelligence organisation in the 6th Division. It then considers the sources and nature of British information gathering, particularly interrogation of prisoners and the collection and analysis of captured documents. Military intelligence summaries and a ‘Blacklist’ of I.R.A. suspects across the 6th Division are used to ascertain the quality of military intelligence products during the final stages of the conflict. The ‘Blacklist’ can be contrasted with I.R.A. unit arrest data and leadership lists, to assess the effectiveness of British military intelligence at a county level. This comparison provides a new measure of British performance, clearly revealing the limitations of British military intelligence in the 6th Division, particularly when compared to relatively more successful results achieved by crown forces in the Dublin District.

Research Article
Copyright © The Author(s), 2024. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of Irish Historical Studies Publications Ltd

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1 Andrew, Christopher, Secret Service; the making of the British intelligence community (London, 1986), pp 355‒6Google Scholar; O'Halpin, Eunan, ‘British intelligence in Ireland, 1914‒1921’ in Andrew, Christopher and Dilkes, David (eds), The missing dimension: governments and intelligence communities in the twentieth century (London, 1984), p. 75Google Scholar; Townshend, Charles, The British campaign in Ireland 1919‒1921 (Oxford, 1975)Google Scholar.

2 McMahon, Paul, British spies and Irish rebels: British intelligence and Ireland, 1916‒1945 (Woodbridge, 2008), pp 132Google Scholar.

3 Jeffery, Keith, ‘British military intelligence following World War I’ in Robertson, K.G. (ed.), British and American approaches to intelligence (London, 1987), p. 74Google Scholar.

4 Peter Hart, British intelligence in Ireland, 1920‒21: the final reports (Cork, 2002), pp 8‒13.

5 William Sheehan, A hard local war: the British Army and guerrilla war in Cork 1919‒1921 (Stroud, 2011).

6 Paul Bew, ‘Moderate nationalism and the Irish Revolution, 1916‒1923’ in The Historical Journal, xlii, no. 3 (1999), pp 729‒49.

7 Geoffrey Sloan, ‘Hide and seek and negotiate: Alfred Cope and counter-intelligence in Ireland 1919‒1921’ in Intelligence and National Security, xxxiii, no. 2 (2018), pp 176‒95.

8 For a localised study beyond Dublin, see John Borgonovo, Spies, informers, and the ‘Anti-Sinn Féin Society’: the intelligence war in Cork City, 1920‒21 (Dublin, 2007).

9 For a few examples, see Michael Foy, Michael Collins's intelligence war: the struggle between the British and the I.R.A., 1919–1921 (Stroud, 2016); Eunan O'Halpin, ‘Collins and intelligence 1919‒1923: from brotherhood to bureaucracy’ in Gabriel Doherty and Dermot Keogh (eds), Michael Collins and the making of the new state (Cork, 1998), pp 68‒80; Dominic Price, We bled together: Michael Collins squad and the Dublin Brigade (Cork, 2017); Anne Dolan and William Murphy, Michael Collins: the man and the revolution (Dublin, 2018); Peter Hart, Mick: the real Michael Collins (New York, 2006), pp 224‒43.

10 Jeffery, ‘British military intelligence’, p. 71.

11 On backgrounds of Dublin victims, see J. B. E. Hittle, Michael Collins and the Anglo-Irish War (Washington D.C., 2001), pp 251‒2. On the 5th Division see Kenneth Strong, Intelligence at the top: the recollections of an intelligence officer (London, 1968), pp 1‒5.

12 See A Report on the intelligence branch of the chief of police, Dublin Castle from May 1920 to July 1921, and A record of the rebellion in Ireland in 1920‒21 and the part played by the army in dealing with it, reproduced in Hart, British intelligence, pp 17–97. Also see The General Staff, 6th Division, ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division area’ in The Irish Sword, xxvii, no. 107 (2010), pp 17–133. These official histories can be found in T.N.A., War Office papers, WO 35/214. See also General Nevil Macready's memoir, Annals of an active life: volume II (New York, 1925).

13 Elizabeth Malcolm, The Irish policeman, 1822‒1922: a life (Dublin, 2006); Charles Townshend, The Republic: the fight for Irish independence (London: Penguin Books, 2014), pp 7‒8.

14 McMahon, British spies, p. 14.

15 Townshend, The British campaign, p. 191. See also W. J. Lowe, ‘The war against the R.I.C., 1919–21’ in Éire-Ireland, xxxvii, no. 3&4 (fall/winter 2002), pp 79‒117.

16 Jim Beach and James Bruce, ‘British signals intelligence in the trenches, 1915‒1918: part 2, listening sets’ in Journal of Intelligence History, xix, 1 (2020), pp 1–23; Jim Beach and James Bruce, ‘British signals intelligence in the trenches, 1915‒1918: part 2, interpreter operators’ in Journal of Intelligence History, xix, 1 (2020), pp 24–50. See also Geoffrey Sloan, ‘The British state and the Irish rebellion of 1916; an intelligence failure or a failure of response?’ in Journal of Strategic Security, vi, no. 3 (2013), pp 328‒57; John Ferris, The British Army and signals intelligence during the First World War (London, 1992). For a more sceptical view of the Royal Navy cryptography and the Easter Rising, see David Larsen ‘British signals intelligence and the 1916 Easter Rising in Ireland’ in Intelligence and National Security, xxxiii, no. 1 (2018), pp 48‒66.

17 Nicholas Hiley, ‘Counter-espionage and security in Great Britain during the First World War’ in E.H.R., ci, no. 400 (1986), pp 635–70; Chris Northcott, ‘MI5's strategy during the First World War’ in International Journal of Intelligence and Counter-Intelligence, 29 (2016), pp 564‒84.

18 Jim Beach, Haig's intelligence: GHQ and the German army, 1916‒1918 (Cambridge, 2013), pp 16, 40‒41, 90‒167.

19 McMahon, British spies, p. 32.

20 Hittle, Michael Collins, pp 132‒3.

21 Ormonde Winter, Winter's tale; an autobiography (London, 1955), pp 288‒9; McMahon, British spies, p. 37. On Churchill's support for Macready's efforts to improve intelligence, see David Stafford, Churchill and Secret Service (London, 1997), p. 129.

22 Michael Hopkinson, The Irish War of Independence (Dublin, 2004), pp 47‒58.

23 Patrick McCarthy ‘The 6th Division and the War of Independence, 1919‒1921; an introduction’ in The Irish Sword, xxvii, no. 107 (2010), pp 5–12. For British formation and unit strengths in June 1921, see Anthony Kinsella, ‘Field troops (regular) stationed in the Irish Command, end of June 1921’ in The Irish Sword, xxvii, no. 109 (2010), pp 344‒9, and William Kautt (ed), Ground truths: British Army operations in the Irish War of Independence (Dublin 2014), pp 26‒30, 68‒72, 119, 167‒8.

24 Of that strength, eighteen battalions were English, three were Scottish and one was Welsh. The remaining five battalion equivalents were redeployed artillery and machine-gun units, recruited from across Britain. Additional reinforcements (seven army battalions or equivalents) arrived in July 1921 just before the Truce: see The General Staff, 6th Division, ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Divisional Area’ in The Irish Sword, xxvii, no. 107 (2010), pp 155‒6. Irish units were not deployed in Ireland at this time.

25 Margaret Ward, Unmanageable revolutionaries; women and Irish nationalism (Dublin, 2021).

26 Data compiled from the I.R.A. nominal rolls, first critical date, 11 July 1921 (Military Service Pensions Collection (hereafter M.S.P.C.), Military Archives of Ireland (hereafter M.A.I.), RO 1-611).

27 Data compiled from ‘Outrages Against Police’ reports, Mar. 1920 to 11 July 1921 (British in Ireland Series [microfilm] CO 904/148-150), Boole Library Special Collections, University College, Cork. Some Dublin city attacks are omitted from those reports.

28 Anthony Clayton, Forearmed: a history of the intelligence corps (New York, 1993), p. 51.

29 For an account of the 6th Division in the First World War, see Sir Thomas Owen Marden, A short history of the Sixth Division, Aug. 1914–Mar. 1919 (London, 1920).

30 ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division Area’, pp 24‒6, 31‒2.

31 Ibid., pp 26‒45, 69; Kautt, Ground truths, pp 31‒5, 59, 110‒14, 160; Hart, British intelligence, pp 40‒42.

32 Beach, Haig's intelligence, p. 119.

33 ‘Note on Secret Service expenditure 1920‒21’, c.1922 (T.N.A., HO 317/59). For details, see letter from Anderson to Macready, 7 Mar. 1921 (T.N.A., CO 904/188).

34 William Sheehan, British voices from the Irish War of Independence 1918‒1921 (Cork, 2005), pp 92‒144. See also ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division Area’, p. 119.

35 ‘Essex Blacklist’ (west Cork area), (Essex Regiment Museum, Chelmsford, ER 21886). Percival rose to the rank of Lieutenant General and is best remembered for his ill-fated command of Malaya and surrender at Singapore in 1942.

36 Sheehan, British voices, pp 92‒144; Andy Bielenberg, John Borgonovo and Padraig Óg Ó Ruairc (eds), The men will talk to me: west Cork interviews by Ernie O'Malley (Cork, 2015), pp 167‒9. See also the Bureau of Military History Witness Statement (hereafter BMH) of Denis Collins (M.A.I., B.M.H., W.S. 827, Denis Collins).

37 Hart, British intelligence, p. 49.

38 For examples, see the M.S.P.C. nominal rolls on 11 July 1921 for the following companies: Kinsale, Ballinadee, Kilbrittain, Ballinspittle, Clogagh, Crosspound, Kilpatrick, and Farnivane (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., I.R.A. nominal rolls, RO 37, 47).

39 Clayton, Forearmed, p. 60.

40 Diary of J. B. Jarvis (Imperial War Museum, London, Jarvis collection, 98/11/1). The military raid on the O'Grady household at Rochestown Cork is a good example of this type of operation: Raid on house of Wm O'Grady, Norwood, 19 Mar. 1920 (T.N.A., CO 904/211/335).

41 ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division area’, pp 45, 69. By April 1921, Kelly also had Captain T. Brady (Royal Dublin Fusiliers) and Lieutenant J. C. Stephens (Black Watch) working with him as assistant I.O.s at Victoria Barracks: see ‘Compositions and dispositions’, c.1921 (N.L.I., Florence O'Donoghue papers, MS 31,223/1).

42 Strong, Intelligence at the top.

43 Padraig Óg Ó Ruairc, ‘“Spies and informers beware”: IRA executions of alleged civilian spies during the Irish War of Independence’ in John Crowley, Donal Ó Drisceoil, Mike Murphy and John Borgonovo (eds), Atlas of the Irish Revolution (Cork, 2017), pp 433‒6.

44 Confidential monthly report, Jan. 1921, County Cork WR (T.N.A., CO 904/114); Tom Barry, Guerilla days in Ireland (Cork, 1989), pp 107‒09; Brind to Anderson, 4 June 1920 (T.N.A., HO 317/59).

45 Anderson to Macready, 7 Mar. 1921 (T.N.A., CO 904/188). Larger sums, such as for the repatriation of witnesses, were referred to the under secretary in Dublin.

46 Wilfred Ewart, A journey in Ireland in 1921 (Dublin, 2008), pp 26‒8.

47 ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division area’, pp 99, 132. General Strickland's authority over most police matters appears to have been accepted by leading police figures: see Letter from Prescott Decie to Strickland, 20 Feb. 1921 (T.N.A., CO 904/188); meeting held at 10 Downing Street, 29 Dec. 1920 (T.N.A., CAB 23/23).

48 Record of Service, Brigadier A. R. Koe (Royal Hampshire Regiment Museum, Winchester). See the Home Office file on the arrest and detention of Terence McSwiney (T.N.A., HO 144/10308).

49 I.O. 1st Southern Division to I.O. G.H.Q., 11 July 1921 (M.A.I., Collins papers, CP/5/2/6 [LXXXI]).

50 2nd Battalion Hampshire Regiment war diary, 1919‒21 (Royal Hampshire Regiment Museum, Winchester); David Scott Daniell, The Royal Hampshire regiment 1918‒1954 (London, 1954), vol. 3; R. M. Grazabrook, ‘A personal diary relating to the operations carried out by the Gloucester Regiment in Ireland’ (Soldiers of Gloucestershire Museum, Gloucester).

51 Hart, British intelligence, pp 26‒7.

52 ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division area’, p. 132.

53 Grazabrook, ‘A personal diary relating to the operations carried out by the Gloucester Regiment’.

54 Letter from Lieutenant J. B. Jarvis, 23 June 1926 (Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum, correspondence regarding application for financial reward by alleged informant, Knockbeha, County Clare). We would like to thank Padraig Óg Ó Ruairc for this reference.

55 ‘The Troubles of 1920‒21’, The Stafford Knot, 1971, Staffordshire Regiment Museum.

56 ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division area’, p. 99.

57 Hart, British intelligence, 46.

58 Examples include I.R.A. section commander James Madden of Ballinspittle Company, County Cork, see B.M.H, W.S. 827, Denis Collins; for Volunteer Patrick ‘Croxy’ Connors, Cork city, see Borgonovo, Spies, informers and the ‘Anti-Sinn Féin Society’, pp 89‒91; for Volunteer Denis ‘Din Din’ Donovan, Cork City, see B.M.H, W.S. 1630, George Hurley; W.S. 1706, Sean O'Connell; and W.S. 1714, Leo Buckley; and for Volunteer Dan Williams Shields, Mallow, see Hart, British intelligence, p. 149.

59 Beach, Haig's intelligence, pp 97‒106; Clayton, Forearmed, pp 29‒30, 49‒50. Systematic questioning of captured enemy fighters was developed by the British Army during its imperial campaigns against the Ashanti, Zulus, Egyptians, and Boers: see Clayton, pp 7‒10.

60 Beach, Haig's intelligence, p. 98. For republican description of the ‘cage’ in Cork, see B.M.H, W.S. 640, Hugh Gribben; W.S. 827, Denis Collins; W.S. 869, P. J. Murphy; WS 1479, Sean Healy; WS 1714, Leo Buckley.

61 Captain J. O. C. Kelly to Lieutenant C. I. O. Davis, 15 Mar. 1921 (NLI, Florence O'Donoghue papers, MS 31,228). For reference to the First World War planting of ‘pigeons’ amid prisoners, see Beach, Haig's intelligence, p. 108. In 1920‒21, Ormonde Winters adopted the same tactic in Dublin: see Hart, British intelligence, p. 83.

62 For example, in the case of Patrick Coakley, Upton, see Bielenberg et al., West Cork interviews by Ernie O'Malley, p. 167. See also Sheehan, British voices, pp 92‒144. For a listing of I.R.A. prisoners executed by the British government, see the M.A.I. ( ) (1 Nov. 2021).

63 Michael Occleshaw, Armour against fate: British military intelligence in the First World War (London, 1989), p. 109.

64 Jeffery, British military intelligence, p. 73.

65 Contemporary depositions of prisoner mistreatment were gathered by the Irish White Cross. See the statement of John Kearney, 14 Jan. 1921; statement and letter of Michael Cummins, 14 Jan. 1921; statement of Maureen Aherne, 2 Apr. 1921; undated statement 69/21 regarding the torture of a prisoner in Dunmanway Workhouse (Boole Library, University College Cork, Alfred O'Rahilly papers, White Cross statements). For later first-hand accounts within the 6th Division area, see B.M.H., W.S. 845, Tomas Malone; W.S. 1294, Sean Whelan; W.S. 1652, Henry O'Mara; W.S. 832,William Desmond; W.S. 1322, Art O'Donnell; W.S. 792, Tadg Sullivan; W.S. 983, Thomas Tuohy; W.S. 1157, Patrick Ronan; W.S. 1232, James Fraher; W.S. 1286, James Roche; W.S. 1348, Michael Davern; W.S. 1467, Patrick Higgins; W.S. 1487, Jerry Ryan; W.S. 1521, Michael Walsh; W.S. 1676, Robert Aherne; and W.S. 1404, Thomas Dargan.

66 Winter, Winter's tale, p. 300.

67 See ‘Thomas Hales, fiction and fact’, c.1920 (T.N.A., CO 904/168).

68 McMahon, British spies, p. 46.

69 See Denis Horgan, rural postman at Blarney, letter from Taylor to the secretary, G.P.O., Dublin, 2 Jan. 1920 (T.N.A., Sinn Fein Suspects, CO 904/203/191); David Keefe, cleaner at Ennis post office, letter from Taylor to the secretary, G.P.O., Dublin, 3 June 1919 (T.N.A., Sinn Fein Suspects, CO 904/205/216); Daniel Harrington, Clerk, Roscrea Post Office, letter from Taylor to the secretary, G.P.O., Dublin, 19 Sept. 1919 (T.N.A., Sinn Fein Suspects, CO 904/203/179).

70 ‘IRA intelligence reports on civilians accused of giving information to and associating with British forces during War of Independence in counties Cork, Kerry, Waterford and Limerick’ (M.A.I., Collins papers, IE/MA/CP/4/40). For an example on the I.R.A. side, see the pension application of Siobhan Lankford (Creedon) Special Intelligence Officer, Cork No. 2 Brigade (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., 34REF29397 Siobhan Lankford).

71 Andy Bielenberg and Pádraig Óg Ó Ruairc, ‘Shallow graves: Documenting and assessing IRA disappearances during the Irish revolution 1919‒1923’ in Small wars and insurgencies, xxxii, no. 4‒5 (2021), pp 619‒41.

72 Captain Seymour Livingston Vincent, Army Education Corps, date of death: 24 May 1921, accessed at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website entry ( (8 Jan. 2022); interview with Jim Bronoch, Ernie O'Malley notebooks (U.C.D.A., O'Malley notebooks, P17b/123); George Power to Florence O'Donoghue, 7 Jan. 1954 (N.L.I., Florence O'Donoghue papers, MS 31,421/11).

73 Inspector general's monthly report, Cork, Nov. 1920 (T.N.A., CO 904/113), 527.

74 Sean Hogan, The Black and Tans in North Tipperary; policing revolution and war 1913‒1922 (Dublin, 2013), p. 274.

75 See the I.R.A. Military Service pensions of Standish Barry, 34REF1895; Michael Baylor, 34REF1906; Hannah Counihan, 34REF59886; James Gray, 34REF57155; Edward O'Callaghan, 34REF2182; Sean O'Connell, 34REF2169; Con Sullivan, 23539. See also the B.M.H., W.S. 1676, Robert Aherne; W.S. 1479, Sean Healy; W.S. 1584, Pa Murray. For a copy of the I.R.A. intelligence memo concerning Kelly, see John Borgonovo ‘Cork’, in Crowley et al. (eds), Atlas of the Irish Revolution, p. 566.

76 For examples, see the B.M.H. Statements: W.S. 556, Mary Walsh; W.S. 845, Thomas Malone; W.S. 1104, Thomas Brennan; W.S. 1413, Tadhg Kennedy; W.S. 1547, Mick Murphy; W.S. 1643, Sean Walshe; W.S. 1676, Robert Aherne; W.S. 1521, Michael Walsh; W.S. 1643, Sean Healy.

77 Thomas Toomey, The War of Independence in Limerick, 1912‒1921 (Ballyhoura, 2011), p. 495; ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division Area’, p. 68. See the I.R.A. nominal rolls for 11 July 1921 for the Third Battalion, East Limerick Brigade (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., RO 128).

78 Home Office file on arrest and detention of Terence McSwiney. The staff officers were released by the British after they joined the Cork Men's Gaol hunger strike.

79 ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division Area’, p. 78; Irish Grants Committee file, Bride McKay (T.N.A., Irish Grants Committee, CO 762/181/4).

80 Hart, British intelligence, pp 40‒42.

81 Ibid., p. 13.

82 Peter Hart, The IRA & its enemies; violence and community in Cork, 1916‒1923 (Oxford, 1998), p. 93.

83 Sheehan, A hard local war, pp 169‒73.

84 Grazabrook, ‘A personal diary relating to the operations carried out by the Gloucester Regiment’. This manuscript also contains a 6th Division weekly intelligence summary for week ending 13 June 1921. Another summary for the week ending 17 May 1921, captured by the I.R.A., can be found in B.M.H., W.S. 883, John M. McCarthy. For the First World War version, see Beach, Haig's intelligence, pp 183‒4.

85 Report of the general officer commander-in-chief on the situation in Ireland for week ending 23 Apr. 1921 (T.N.A. CAB 24/122/72).

86 Ibid.

87 Report of the general officer commander-in-chief on the situation in Ireland for week ending 30 Apr. 1921 (T.N.A. CAB 24/123/13). R.I.C. reports also flowed to the British cabinet, including its daily intelligence summary: see daily intelligence summary (R.I.C.) (T.N.A., CO 904/168, 1921).

88 Grazabrook, ‘A personal diary relating to the operations carried out by the Gloucester Regiment’.

89 See the instructions to Auxiliary Division R.I.C. intelligence officers, May 1921 (M.A.I., Collins papers, 5/1/16 J File). For one example, see the weekly intelligence summary for H Company R.I.C. Auxiliary Division (County Kerry) for Apr. 1921 (N.L.I., Florence O'Donoghue papers, MS 31,225).

90 Grazabrook, ‘A personal diary relating to the operations carried out by the Gloucester Regiment’.

91 Beach, Haig's intelligence, p. 324.

92 For example, see the Essex Regiment cuttings book, of newspaper cuttings concerning I.R.A. volunteers in west Cork (Essex Regiment Museum, Chelmsford, ERCB6). For the pace of progress, see ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division Area’, pp 24, 35. For reference to similar military intelligence ‘wanted’ lists distributed during the Anglo-Boer War, see Clayton, Forearmed, p. 10.

93 6th Division Blacklist, c. May/June 1921 (Imperial War Museum, London, Jarvis papers, 806-13-C).

94 Beach, Haig's intelligence, pp 106‒08; Clayton, Forearmed, pp 11, 28‒9, 44.

95 Foy, Michael Collins's intelligence war, pp 188‒9.

96 Borgonovo, John, Florence and Josephine O'Donoghue's War of Independence: a destiny which shapes our ends (Dublin, 2006)Google Scholar.

97 Blacklist (west Cork area), c.June 1921 (Essex Regiment Museum, Chelmsford, ER 21886).

98 A series of articles on the entries in the Auxiliary diary appeared in the Southern Star newspaper: see the Southern Star, 23, 30 Oct., 6, 13, 20, 27 Nov. 1971. See also ‘Notebook Entries made by IO of ‘K’ Company Auxiliary RIC, Dunmanway, Co, Cork 1920‒21’ (M.A.I., B.M.H. contemporary documents, CD 31).

99 Suspects from 6th Division Blacklist; membership figures from I.R.A. nominal rolls, 11 July 1921 (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., RO 1-611).

100 Ward, Unmanageable revolutionaries.

101 Brigade staffs for the Kerry No. 3 Brigade and West Clare Brigade are not available in the IRA nominal rolls and are omitted from the sample. Kerry 3 Brigade returns are missing entirely, while the West Clare Brigade battalion rolls are present but not the brigade headquarters’ staff listing.

102 6th Division Blacklist; I.R.A. nominal rolls, 11 July 1921 (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., RO 1-611).

103 See the IRA Nominal Rolls returns for 11 July 1921 in the relevant brigades and battalions in the First Southern, Second Southern, Third Southern, First Western and Third Eastern divisions (M.A.I., M.S.P.C, RO 27, 39, 46, 64, 70, 72, 88, 102, 117, 123, 133, 140, 144, 154, 183, 207, 213, 546, 550).

104 See the I.R.A. nominal rolls returns for 11 July 1921 (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., RO 27, 39, 46, 64, 70, 72, 88, 102, 117, 123, 133, 140, 144, 154, 183, 207, 213, 546, 550).

105 Brigade staffs were not standardised beyond the four senior leadership positions. Active brigades often generated large brigade staffs, such as the Cork No. 1 Brigade, which filled twenty-two staff positions. Less sophisticated brigade staffs might be confined to the four senior leadership positions.

106 See Outrages Against Police, Jan. to July 1921 (T.N.A., CO 904/150).

107 Attacks compiled for Outrage Against Police reports for Counties Clare, Cork, Kerry, Kilkenny, Limerick, Tipperary, Waterford and Wexford from Apr. 1920 to June 1921 (T.N.A., CO 904/148 – 150).

108 ‘Report by the General Officer Commanding in Chief on the situation in Ireland for the week ending Feb. 5th 1921’ (T.N.A., Cabinet Papers, CAB/24/119); and ‘Report by the General Officer Commanding-In-Chief on the situation in Ireland for week ending 16 July 1921’, appendix 4, 19 July 1921 (T.N.A., Cabinet papers, CAB/24/126/56).

109 Dublin Castle publicity reports, weekly review, 23 June 1921, CO 904/168.

110 For the I.R.A. nominal strength, see John Borgonovo, ‘“Army without banners”: The Irish Republican Army, 1920‒21’ in Crowley et al. (eds), Atlas of the Irish Revolution, pp 390‒99.

111 Murphy, William, Political imprisonment and the Irish, 1912‒1921 (Oxford, 2016), pp 1, 193‒7Google Scholar, 269. Murphy points out that an unknown number of prisoners were not members of the I.R.A., which implies that the 6,129 figure exceeded the real I.R.A. imprisonment total.

112 Owing to low returns, Counties Longford, Wicklow and Armagh are not included: I.R.A. nominal rolls (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., RO 1-611). Sample comprised of arrest and membership returns for 896 I.R.A. companies.

113 Arrest data is taken from T.N.A., CAB/24/126/56, and troop strength from British Army forces in Ireland, June 1921: Kinsella, ‘Field troops (regular)’, pp 345–9.

114 M.S.P.C. I.R.A. nominal rolls data, 11 July 1921, for 1st Battalion, Mid-Limerick Brigade (M.A.,I. M.S.P.C., RO 34); 1st Battalion, Waterford No. 1 Brigade (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., RO 71); 1st and 2nd Battalion, Cork No. 1 Brigade (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., RO 28, 29).

115 Borgonovo, Army without banners, pp 394‒7.

116 Ó Ruairc, ‘Spies and informers’, pp 433‒6; Bielenberg and Ó Ruairc, ‘Shallow graves’, pp 619‒41.

117 Dublin troop totals are confined to only those Dublin District units stationed within the city in June 1921. While there were considerable support troops in Dublin, the city also included over 8,000 soldiers from thirteen frontline infantry battalions in addition to numerous active specialist units: see Kinsella, ‘Field troops (regular)’. The author would like to thank Charlie Roche for use of his spreadsheet of the Kinsella article.

118 Macready, Annals of an active life, vol. ii, p. 462.

119 ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division Area’, p. 32.

120 Figures derived from I.R.A. nominal rolls for 11 July 1921 in available companies in Counties Kerry, Clare, Limerick, Tipperary, Kilkenny, Waterford, Cork, and Wexford (M.A.I., M.S.P.C., RO 27, 39, 46, 64, 70, 72, 88, 102, 117, 123, 133, 140, 144, 154, 183, 207, 213, 546, 550).

121 Foster, Gavin, The Irish Civil War and society: politics, class, and conflict (London, 2015), pp 146‒7CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

122 Letter from Macready to Anderson, 8 Apr. 1921 (T.N.A., CO 904/188).