Hugh McAteer, 1916-1970

Last week saw the fiftieth anniversary of the death of former IRA Chief of Staff, prison escapee, hunger striker (he was one of the first republicans to experience long term confinement in the twentieth century), husband, father and writer Hugh McAteer (on 24 June 1970) at the young age of only 53. You can readContinue reading “Hugh McAteer, 1916-1970”

Republican News, fifty years on…

Fifty years ago this summer a new run of Republican News began to be published by the Publicity Department of the Belfast IRA’s Brigade staff under the editorship of Jimmy Steele. The importance of publicity and communication had long been recognised across the political spectrum in Ireland. The anti-colonial movements, in particular, recognised the needContinue reading “Republican News, fifty years on…”

The Derry Jail Great Escape, 20th March 1943

On the 20th March 1943 the IRA staged a mass escape through a tunnel from Derry Jail. The escape was one of a series of high profile actions by the IRA in the north in the first half of 1943 (there is more on the context of the escape here). The escape itself is well coveredContinue reading “The Derry Jail Great Escape, 20th March 1943”

IRA memo from Chief of Staff, 13th June 1942

    This is an rare example of a surviving internal IRA memo from 1942. Sent from the department of the Chief of Staff, GHQ to the Director of Publicity, Northern Command on 13th June 1942. At the time, the Chief of Staff of the IRA was Hugh McAteer, while the Director of Publicity inContinue reading “IRA memo from Chief of Staff, 13th June 1942”

75th Anniversary of Crumlin Road Jail Escape

Monday 15th January 2018 will be the 75th anniversary of the escape from Crumlin Road Jail by Pat Donnelly, Hugh McAteer, Ned Maguire and Jimmy Steele. The escape provided one of the few iconic images of the IRA campaign of the 1940s, with the famous wanted poster. It was initially published in the local pressContinue reading “75th Anniversary of Crumlin Road Jail Escape”

Hugh McAteer centenary

This year is the centenary of the birth of the former IRA Chief of Staff Hugh McAteer. To mark it, I’ve put together various pieces about McAteer, including a lengthy memoir he published in instalments in The Sunday Independent in 1951. You can read it here: https://issuu.com/jjconeill/docs/hugh_mcateer_the_escape  

The Great Escape: Derry, 1943

On the 20th March 1943 the IRA staged a mass escape through a tunnel from Derry Jail. The escape was one of a series of high profile actions by the IRA in the north in the first half of 1943. The escape itself is well covered by an episode of the TG4 series, Ealú: ToContinue reading “The Great Escape: Derry, 1943”

Odd Man Out: a story about the Belfast IRA?

The film Odd Man Out was released in 1947. Based on Lawrie Green’s novel of the same name which had been published in 1945, Green also adapted it for the screenplay. The film was nominated for an Oscar as well as for the Venice Film Festival’s Golden Lion. It subsequently won a BAFTA award for Best Film inContinue reading “Odd Man Out: a story about the Belfast IRA?”

The Falls Curfew, 1942

The issue of Republican News that was published just after Tom Williams‘ execution on 2nd September 1942, stated that “…neither the passions of the people, nor the fiery demand for action of the Volunteers, will make the Army authorities enter into hasty or unplanned action.” Just over a month after Williams’ execution, the IRA did enter intoContinue reading “The Falls Curfew, 1942”