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9 August 1922: The battle for Cork

Read Joanna Bruck and Damian Sheils’ essay on Landscapes of counter-memory on Century Ireland.

Ireland 1922, edited by Darragh Gannon and Fearghal McGarry, features 50 essays from leading international scholars that explore a turning point in history, one whose legacy remains controversial a century on. Building on their own expertise, and on the wealth of recent scholarship provoked by the Decade of Centenaries, each contributor focuses on one event that illuminates a key aspect of revolutionary Ireland, demonstrating how the events of this year would shape the new states established in 1922. Together, these essays explore many of the key issues and debates of a year that transformed Ireland.

In collaboration with Century Ireland, we are making the 50 essays freely available online. Today’s essay is by Joanna Bruck and Damian Sheils which details the battle of Cork, aiming to highlight the forgotten landscapes of the civil war.

On Wednesday, 9 August 1922, an Irish Free State soldier named Flood was shot by anti-Treaty forces who had taken up positions in the hills overlooking Rochestown and Douglas, hoping to obstruct the advance of the National Army on Cork city.1 Flood was one of a detachment of troops advancing across a field in a bid to outflank a group of IRA Volunteers positioned at a sharp bend in the road. Emerging through a gate onto the road, he was hit by a burst of IRA machine-gun fire. As Flood lay dying, Frank O’Donoghue, a republican who had fought alongside him in the War of Independence, broke cover, running out to take his hand and to say an Act of Contrition in his ear. This moment epitomises the bitter ironies of the civil war that have made it such a difficult episode in Ireland’s recent history. Continue reading (you will be redirected to the website of Century Ireland)

Ireland 1922, edited by Darragh Gannon and Fearghal McGarry, is published by the Royal Irish Academy with support from the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media under the Decade of Centenaries 2012-2023 programme.


Ireland 1922