Irish War of Independence - Coordinated Attacks - 22.May.1920

Irish War of Independence

 

In the month of May 1920 the IRA in south Kildare targeted the town of Athy and its hinterland. First the Customs and Excise Offices in the town were broken into in the middle of the month and all the documents relating to income tax were seized.

 

In a well-coordinated attack no other document was touched in the building. In the same week an aged couple called Loughman were raided by masked and armed men who demanded money from the pair. Terrifying the couple they made off with £13. At Grangemellon sheds belonging to a Miss Keating were set on fire, in a week of arson throughout the area. In the Town Hall in Athy where discharged soldiers met and kept an office, it too was raided and documents associated with the soldiers set on fire. Elsewhere in the Kildare substantial claims were made for a variety of arson attacks on public buildings. Of course while the IRA gained the upper hand when buildings such as these were burned, the downside for the local population was that they were heavily taxed for the compensation claims that ensued. These included for the burning of Maynooth Town Hall and courthouse (£2,250); £800 for Donadea RIC barracks; £640 for Leixlip RIC barracks and £500 for the burning of Sallins RIC barracks. In time this extra taxation would be widely resented but also sent a number of county councils towards bankruptcy as the new state emerged.

 

Download Source: Leinster Express 1831-current, 22.05.1920, page 4

 

Irish War of IndependenceLeinster Express_22May_1920

 

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