Taking over Millstreet R.I.C. Barracks

L-R: J.O’Neill (representative of Provisional Government); District Inspector E.Egan, R.I.C; Sonnie Meaney, Commandant I.R.A.; J.Lehane; Sean Healy; Mort Callaghan


Taking over Millstreet R.I.C. Barracks appeared in the Kerryman, Saturday 16th March 1935. [ref]

  • But, what was the year? you’d have to suspect 1922, because that was the year the RIC was disbanded and was replaced by the Civic Guard (later called the Garda Síochána) in the Irish Free State and the Royal Ulster Constabulary in Northern Ireland. Probably very early 1922, as it appears that the most RIC stations in Cork had been evacuated by February 23rd 1922 (see the image below from the Irish Independent)
  • What buildings are in the background? They’re probably in the area of the RIC Barracks in the Square (currently the Garda Station and the J.A Hickey’s Hardware Store [map])
  • What became of the men? There is a brief description of Ernest Egan below,  Sonny Meaney was Con Meaney’s first cousin, who lived in Coolenaree of the others I don’t know.


“While no troops have left Ireland for some days a resumption of the exodus is expected immediately. Large quantities of military stores continue to leave Dublin.
All R.I.C. stations in North and North-East Cork, with the exception of Mallow have now been evacuated. The only R.I.C. stations in the whole county are Bandon, Mallow, Cobh, and Haulbowline.
The evacuation of the R.I.C. barracks in Limerick City, announced for yesterday, was posponed till to-day, but a detachment of R.I.C. left for Mullingar. Bruff R.I.C. barracks was handed over to E.Limerick Brigade, I.R.A. thus completing the evacuation of East Limerick by British forces” Irish Independent Thursday, February 23, 1922. [fb]


The R.I.C Barrack in the Square is outlined in red in the above map [GeoHive]

What is now J.A. Hickie’s Hardware Store in the Square, Millstreet, is actually half of the old barrack building in Millstreet [GMaps]




See our notes on the Millstreet Barrack


The granddaughter of Thomas J Deegan, the last Sergeant in Millstreet “Journeyed to Ireland from Canada, in 2015 to find my mother’s actual place of birth, March 13, 1918…this house, known as ‘The Barracks’, Millstreet, Co Cork….”. She posted these on the Forgotten Ireland FB page:


Ernest Arthur Egan was born on 1/4/1891, Albert Street, Sligo, Co. Sligo; 5ft 9inches & 7/8; Roman Catholic; (Sligo Registrar’s District, June Quarter, 1891, vol.2, p. 299); son of John Egan (30/5/1851-15/12/1922), DI RIC & Rose Anne ‘Rosanna’ O’Connor & the brother of Meredith Joseph Egan, DI RIC; he had been a former sergeant major in the army for 4 years & 327 days and a clerk with the Ministry of Labour; he was promoted a 3rd Class District Inspector on 20/9/1921; pensioned 9/5/1922; he died on 28/2/1933 in Fulham, England. – [ref]
allocated to Millstreet on 1st Oct 21;


TODO: move the profile of Ernest Egan to its own page and expand.



6 thoughts on “Taking over Millstreet R.I.C. Barracks”

  1. I have spent years trying to find Sonny Meaney’s grave. Without taking from the contributions of others of that time, it annoyed me to hear the speeches & witness the commemorations of 1916 when no mention was made of him. He was the significant IRA leader in these parts & yet people know nothing of him. I would be delighted if anyone could identify his burial plot, so that honour could be given to him. I know he lived in Lackabane, that he had one daughter who joined the Order of the Sisters of Jesus & I am told that after his death his widow returned to her native Bealnomorrive. I would love to know more.

    1. I would also love to know more about him. He was my Dad’s first cousin. He had one sister, she did not have a family. His mother grew up where I grew up.

  2. Where Was the RIC Station?
    My curiosity comes from my 2nd great grandfather having been Head Constable there between 1833 and 1855.
    When I was in Millstreet in 1999, I was told that the RIC station/barrack was the old grey ruin behind what is now Hickie’s Hardware on Main St.
    Last year, I was told that the station was on West End [across from St Patrick’s], and that the ruin behind Hickie’s was an old Army barracks.
    The four year old post above seems to say the Hickie’s building was the RIC station, and the older ruin behind was an additional RIC barracks.
    Can anyone clear this up?
    Thank you!

    1. The barrack was located across from the graveyard beside the church at West End, Millstreet, until about 1890, when the RIC moved to the larger military barrack in the Square, and which was also better fortified from attack.
      The building you see now as Hickie’s shop was about two-thirds of the main barrack building.

  3. Michael! I can’t figure out how to post it here. But I have an 1840 map of Millstreet showing the Police Barrack located as you said. It’s identified on the left, next to the Catholic Church. And an ‘Infantry Barrack’ is identified on the right near where the old Anglican Church stood.
    Let me know if you need/would like it, and I’ll try to figure something out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.