In the last few days we have been asked for a little more information on Captain Con Murphy, whose 100th anniversary is today, and after whom Murphy’s Terrace in Millstreet was named. For this purpose, below is a detailed article on his active years, written by his great-grandniece as a special study for her Leaving Certificate a few years ago:
Captain Cornelius Murphy: 1915-1921
First Volunteer of the Irish Republican Army to be executed under Martial Law for possession of firearms.
In 1921 my great-granduncle, Captain Cornelius Murphy was the first to be executed by the British Firing Squad since the executions of the 1916 Easter Rising Leaders. He was also the first volunteer of the Irish Republican Army to be executed under Martial Law for possession of firearms.
His military career began in December 1915, when Con was appointed Officer Commanding of the Rathduane Company in Ballydaly which comprised of forty men. At the time this was under Tomas MacCurtain’s Cork Brigade of Irish Volunteers, in January 1919, this Company became part of Liam Lynch’s No. 2 Brigade. After the Easter Rising, 1916, the controversy surrounding the executions of the Rising Leaders had grown in intensity, and the Royal Irish Constabulary, (backed by the British Army) raided Ireland for signs of potential threat to English security. Con and his brother Denis were arrested in the aftermath of the Rising as part of a nationwide crackdown on prominent Republicans (more than one hundred men were captured in total). The Murphys arrived at Knutsford, Chesire on June 7th 1916. All the detainees were released in August of that year as the jail was shut down. [read more …] “Captain Cornelius Murphy: 1915-1921”