Ancestry.co.uk Adds the Ireland Courts Martial Files (1916-1922)

On Easter Monday, 24th April 1916, a small group of Irish Volunteers occupied the General Post Office (GPO) in Dublin and proclaimed an Irish Republic. The volunteers also secured several other key locations throughout the city including the Four Courts and City Hall. From a military perspective, the Easter Rising was a complete failure. But it was the events that followed that ensured the effects of the Rising would alter the course of Irish history. It is within this context that the Courts Martial Files play such an important role.

EasterRising

Martial Law was declared in on the 25th of April 1916 in an attempt to maintain order on the streets of Dublin. This was later extended to the whole country. During the aftermath of the Easter Rising, and during the years of the Irish War of Independence individuals were arrested under Martial Law if suspected of being pro-independence and committing treason to the Crown.

Under Martial Law individuals were tried without a defence council, without a jury and the trials took place in private chambers. Members of the public and members of the press were not allowed to be present at the trial.

The online collection of documents covers Field General Courts Martial Records, with nearly 2,000 searchable names and additional names found within the images. Each record contains evidence against the defendants, their statements and proclamations. Beyond the leaders, the records relate to individuals suspected of being involved with the Nationalist movement in Ireland. Arrests were made under Martial Law for conspiracy, murder, treason, and securing and publishing secret government information. Also contained is these files are an alphabetical roll of prisoners and detailed individual prisoner cases imprisoned as a result of Court Martial Proceedings.

You can read more in the Ancestry Blog at http://goo.gl/az55Ad while the records themselves are available at http://search.ancestry.co.uk/search/db.aspx?dbid=61055&path=.

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