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‘The Irregular’s taste for the finer things’

Examples of two Dungarvan compensation court claims in 1923

Waterford News 11 November 1923

Thomas H Murphy of the Park Hotel, Main Street, Dungarvan, claimed £56.0.3 for teas, drinks, stouts, etc. taken by the Irregulars.  Murphy stated that the I.R.A. supplied meat to him which he had to cook for them.  They took the drink by force.  They also took a suit of clothes and a lady’s trench coat.  The state solicitor Mr. Ryan was intrigued and remarked: ‘What do the ladies want trench coats for?  We have enough going into trench coats without the ladies going into them’.  Murphy also said that the Irregulars took a quantity of underclothing and left their own clothing behind.  Mr. Ryan cross-examined Murphy who admitted he did ‘fairly well with the British military owing to his place being near the barracks.  The I.R.A. paid for some drinks they got, but they commandeered all the drinks they claimed for.  On the first night three of the Irregulars came in with a bomb and demanded three large stouts.  He sent to the barracks when the bomb was produced and the pin taken out, and the Irregular was removed.  Murphy found the bomb on the premises next morning and some ammunition’.  The judge awarded £20 in compensation.

R.A. Merry & Co claimed £1.13.3 for puddings, sausages and £84.16 for groceries, liquors, including six ‘quibs’ of champagne.  Mr. Ryan, solicitor, commented: ‘There must have been some fellows ‘craw-sick’ which produced much laughter in the court.  Merry’s felt they had to hand over the goods as the men had revolvers. The judge awarded £60.

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