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The handover of power and the British withdrawal from Ireland, 1922


Saturday, August 20, 2022, 13:00 - 13:50


Hedge School, Milwaukee Irish Festival



Join RIA author John Gibney at this year's Milwaukee Irish Festival

This year we are delighted to be back, in person, at the Milwaukee Irish Festival. The Festival runs from 18 to 21 August with a very busy schedule. Our author John Gibney will be there to deliver three lectures on key events in modern Irish history.

The second lecture will take place at 1.00 p.m. on Saturday, 20 August, as part of the Festival's Hedge School.

In January 1922 the British handed over power to a new Irish government and prepared to leave 26 of Ireland’s 32 counties. The handover and British withdrawal fell between the Treaty split of January 1922 and the outbreak of the Irish Civil War in June 1922 and is usually overshadowed by both. This lecture explores how a British military presence that had lasted for over 700 years came to a swift but uncertain, end.

Read more on this topic in The Handover, by John Gibney and Kate O'Malley. This book illustrates the 1922 handover of power by the outgoing British administration to the Provisional Government of Ireland led by Michael Collins in early 1922. 

John Gibney is Assistant Editor with the Royal Irish Academy’s Documents on Irish Foreign Policy (DIFP) series. He was formerly a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Notre Dame and NUI Galway, and is the author of A short history of Ireland, 1500-2000 (Yale University Press, 2017) co-author, with Kate O’Malley, of The Handover: Dublin Castle and the British withdrawal from Ireland, 1922 (Royal Irish Academy, 2022), and co-editor, with Zoë Reid, of The Treaty, 1921: Records from the Archives (Royal Irish Academy, 2022), the official catalogue of the National Archives’ centenary exhibition of the same name.

Find out more about Lecture #1 and Lecture #3. Check out the Festival programme and buy your tickets at

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