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Policing Revolutionary Dublin 1919-23

JohnD66

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New article here on policing revolutionary Dublin, the decline of the DMP, the rise and fall of police paramilitaries- the Auxiliaries, Irish Republican Police and CID and finally establishment of the Garda Siochana.

Policing Revolutionary Dublin 1919-1923 | The Irish Story

By 1900, Dublin, with a population of 390,000, was per head of population the most heavily policed city in the United Kingdom, with one policeman for every 330 people, compared with one for roughly 500 in British cities. It was not, before the advents of political unrest, a particularly dangerous place. In the early 1900s about 80% of the 3,000 or so offences recorded every year were comprised of non-violent theft and most of the rest were connected with drunkenness and assault, with usually only about two to three murders a year
But as a result of the neutering of the DMP, the proliferation of weapons and the in-discipline of all he armed force in the city, crime spiraled during the years of nationalist revolutionaries.

In all of 1922, not counting killings as a result of political violence, the DMP filed 479 cases of armed robbery, 23 murders and 53 attempted murders. This was a staggering rate of violent crime in a city in which murder had been a rarity before the First World War.
Solutions included the Irish Republican Police, the Free State's CID in 1922 and on occasion the IRA too. Order, or state power, call it what you will was not properly reestablished until 1924, when violent crime rates returned to pre 1919 levels. The DMP was integrated into the Garda into 1925.
 
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O

Oscurito

I currently have a paid subscription to a certain newspaper archive website because I'm doing genealogical research.

My primary focus is outside of Dublin but there is a noticeably more disdainful attitude towards the RIC in the material I'm referencing in the late 1910s and early 1920s.
 

Boy M5

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Thank you.
Fascinating.
 

Boy M5

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I currently have a paid subscription to a certain newspaper archive website because I'm doing genealogical research.

My primary focus is outside of Dublin but there is a noticeably more disdainful attitude towards the RIC in the material I'm referencing in the late 1910s and early 1920s.
I am not surprised given their Stasi like real function. However, was that the reason? Was the paper a more advanced nationalist paper?
 
O

Oscurito

I am not surprised given their Stasi like real function. However, was that the reason? Was the paper a more advanced nationalist paper?
I'm referring to the Anglo-Celt in Cavan (and to a lesser extent, the Freeman's Journal). The AC would have been a solidly nationalist newspaper from the 1860s and maybe even earlier.
 

Catalpast

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Very Good article there John

Re Unlike the RIC they were retained by the Irish Free State under the Treaty but nearly half – 574, took the option to retire rather than to serve the new state

IIRC that was because a generous retirement package was available under the terms of the Treaty and a lot of the older men went for that option

- ie it was financial rather than political as to why they left when they did

Re Murphy and the closing down 'The Monto' it was Frank Duff of the Legion of Mary who was the driving force behind that

- but he needed Murphy's backing to ensure that the DMP men on the beat understood that this time round the Monto was to be finally suppressed and no more 'blind eyes' to allow it to re establish itself...
 

JohnD66

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Very Good article there John

Re Unlike the RIC they were retained by the Irish Free State under the Treaty but nearly half – 574, took the option to retire rather than to serve the new state

IIRC that was because a generous retirement package was available under the terms of the Treaty and a lot of the older men went for that option

- ie it was financial rather than political as to why they left when they did

Re Murphy and the closing down 'The Monto' it was Frank Duff of the Legion of Mary who was the driving force behind that

- but he needed Murphy's backing to ensure that the DMP men on the beat understood that this time round the Monto was to be finally suppressed and no more 'blind eyes' to allow it to re establish itself...
The Monto thing is really interesting isn't it? I mean for decades the DMP must have had order to turn a blind eye? Then in the FS, a bit of political pressure is applied and bam, it's gone.
 

Catalpast

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The Monto thing is really interesting isn't it? I mean for decades the DMP must have had order to turn a blind eye? Then in the FS, a bit of political pressure is applied and bam, it's gone.
Basically that's it

- Murphy was a 'no nonsense' type of man

- he served on the Somme, Ypres and then Italy in the Front Lines

- + in the Civil War

As a military man he did not take 'No' for an answer

He did a good job on a shoestring with the post war DMP - morale was rock bottom and half his force left in a couple of years

- however Kevin O'Higgins wanted AGS & the DMP amalgamated and after that Murphy spent the next 30 years basically in Limbo as Dev did not want a Free State General in charge of the Garda

- he got rid of O'Duffy (who Murphy well knew) & IIRC it was basically Civil servants who were appointed after Broy stepped down (mid 1930s?)

IMO the DMP should have been retained - after all the London Metropolitan Police are still going strong

- and that was the Police Force that the DMP were based upon

BTW

WRE Murphy, centre, seated, was the last DMP Commissioner and the first Irishman to hold the position

The man in the centre is O'Duffy - Murphy is the man with the 'tash' in the back right
 
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JohnD66

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Basically that's it

- Murphy was a 'no nonsense' type of man

- he served on the Somme, Ypres and then Italy in the Front Lines

- + in the Civil War

As a military man he did not take 'No' for an answer

He did a good job on a shoestring with the post war DMP - morale was rock bottom and half his force left in a couple of years

- however Kevin O'Higgins wanted AGS & the DMP amalgamated and after that Murphy spent the next 30 years basically in Limbo as Dev did not want a Free State General in charge of the Garda

- he got rid of O'Duffy (who Murphy well knew) & IIRC it was basically Civil servants who were appointed after Broy stepped down (mid 1930s?)

IMO the DMP should have been retained - after all the London Metropolitan Police are still going strong

- and that was the Police Force that the DMP were based upon
What would have been the advantage of keeping DMP and AGS separate though? Makes more sense to have Dublin Garda metropolitan division, I think. Plus in a way, the Garda after 1923 was arguably modeled more on the DMP than its predecessor the RIC.
 

McTell

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The Monto thing is really interesting isn't it? I mean for decades the DMP must have had order to turn a blind eye? Then in the FS, a bit of political pressure is applied and bam, it's gone.

Not exactly, it was closed down as a red light brothel district. Duff was a religious nutter and Monto was visibly in the city centre. But prostitution by individual girls (or boys) has always been legal in Ireland.
 

Catalpast

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What would have been the advantage of keeping DMP and AGS separate though? Makes more sense to have Dublin Garda metropolitan division, I think. Plus in a way, the Garda after 1923 was arguably modeled more on the DMP than its predecessor the RIC.
Good question!

I will have to think of a good answer on that one....

Yes that is an interesting observation

But the RIC were an anachronism in these islands

Unfortunately the RUC modelled themselves on their predecessors too...
 

Catalpast

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Not exactly, it was closed down as a red light brothel district. Duff was a religious nutter and Monto was visibly in the city centre. But prostitution by individual girls (or boys) has always been legal in Ireland.
Duff was deeply religious

- but he was no 'nutter'

I don't believe Prostitution was 'legal' here under the Old Regime or the new ones either...
 

McTell

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No

Catalpast

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It's been legal since forever. But not streetwalking, brothels, under 18s, or trafficked people. They're proposing to ban it. They should tax it. It was certainly legal in not-hugely-revolutionary Dublin.

Head to head: Why the purchase of sex should not be a criminal offence
Amnesty Int are a morally rotten organisation IMO

- so this comes as no surprise to me that the would support something like this

-very very few groups involved in trying to stop the sexual exploitation of women would want this to happen

- ie neither party is committing an illegal act

Its at times like this that we miss men of the calibre of Murphy and Duff

- who were not prepared to turn a blind eye to evil men in the shadows

- who exploit these women and control them

- and make Vast Profits from them

Remember that Money buys influence in this World.....
 

McTell

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No
Amnesty Int are a morally rotten organisation IMO

- so this comes as no surprise to me that the would support something like this

-very very few groups involved in trying to stop the sexual exploitation of women would want this to happen.....

God gave most of us nerve endings to appreciate the female body. Or Nature / Gaia if you like. I'm a great fan of fornication. The only reason that sex has been in the shadows here since the 1920s was our weird religious obsession, and Duff was part of that.

Matt Talbot, seriously, you couldn't make it up.
 

Catalpast

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God gave most of us nerve endings to appreciate the female body. Or Nature / Gaia if you like. I'm a great fan of fornication. The only reason that sex has been in the shadows here since the 1920s was our weird religious obsession, and Duff was part of that.

Matt Talbot, seriously, you couldn't make it up.
Sexual relations between men and women never was illegal

- maybe you are confused on this issue?

The selling of sex was

- which was a bit 'sexist' I admit

But just to re iterate

- feminist groups involved in working with prostitutes

- are not in favour of prostitution

The potential for exploitation is just too great

- the vast majority of girls/women on 'the Game'

- are seriously vulnerable women

Not all - but nearly all

The Monto was a cesspit

- where women was used

- and abused

Frank Duff (with assistance of Murphy) finally shut it down
 

McTell

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No
Sexual relations between men and women never was illegal

- maybe you are confused on this issue?

The selling of sex was

- which was a bit 'sexist' I admit

..

No, oddly enough a one-on-one sale or buying of sex was never illegal. That's why I linked that link - they want to make it illegal. But prostitutes can get off paying tax because the State was too squeamish to admit prostitution ever existed here in "Holy Ireland". Pathetic.

If women are trafficked then the guards can check by simply googling escorts and dublin, and find out where they are, what they look like and their phone numbers. 700 plus as I write. That's just in Dublin. It can't be a big problem as none of these were trafficked resulting in convictions since 2013:

No criminal convictions in Ireland for sex trafficking since...

On the feminist or not front, :roll: maybe another 10% are men. Or are trans-sexuals / grey area. Hundreds more only do massages. Beside Dundrum GS! I would have agreed with you 5 years ago. Now I'd say register them all, health check them all and tax them all.

The strange fact about any trafficked women is that they get to stay here, helped by us taxpayers. If I was genuinely trafficked I'd want to go home at once. It's becoming the clever new way of getting into the EU.

There are other anti-sensual laws here, like you can't make love out of doors, that I have broken, and will break as long as I'm able.

Not-so-Revolutionary Dublin caused the city to stagnate under a cloud of religion and stout for another 40 years, but let's not go there.
 
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Seanie Lemass

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Not exactly, it was closed down as a red light brothel district. Duff was a religious nutter and Monto was visibly in the city centre. But prostitution by individual girls (or boys) has always been legal in Ireland.

Monto was a festering sore. Many of the prostitutes were country girls who had come to Dublin and been forced into the brothels, often after being raped. That scumbag Felloni the drug dealer was doing the same in the 1950s and 1960s.

Ironically, much of the romanticised version of Monto comes from people who think that it was celebrated by Joyce. Anyone who thinks that Joyce romanticised the violence and nastiness of the kips never read the 'Nightown' chapter of Ulysses. The North Inner City Folklore Project's book "Monto" is also a good and realistic source on the horrors that were associated with the place.

Duff, by the way, rescued girls and women from nasty scum, and many of them later recorded their gratitude to them. They were in same virtual slavery as women and girls trafficked into Ireland at the moment.
 

McTell

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No
Monto was a festering sore. Many of the prostitutes were country girls who had come to Dublin and been forced into the brothels, often after being raped. ...

I will agree 100% on festering sore, by our standards. But after they were rescued they often ended up as slaves for life in magdalen asylums (the clue is in the name) under the terms of a court order. Or they emigrated; yet most of our 1920s revolutionaries claimed to oppose emigration.

Ultimately the problem still is, what decent paying jobs can be found for undereducated inexperienced young people? For many pretty young girls, prostitution seemed a good option until the hidden costs emerged. Many of those hidden costs, such as "family shame" were there only because of our obsession with religious respectability.

You'll be surprised to know that the visible 1920s northside Monto brothels went underground into basements nearby, and that was the point, Duff and the LOM didn't want them visible. Nobody else minded and it all carried on much as before.

Of course there were many other panics about Holy Ireland's high VD rates in the 1920s, filthy books, african-type jazz music and so on. The 1920-23 revolution was conservative and we were killing to go back to the middle ages.

History Ireland
 


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