Committee Commemorates the Tourmakeady Ambush, a Pivotal Battle in Ireland’s War of Independence
Tourmakeady, Co. Mayo, Ireland—On May 3, 2021, the Tourmakeady Ambush Committee will launch its year-long centennial commemoration of the Tourmakeady Ambush, a pivotal battle in Ireland's War of Independence.
Also known as the "Tan War," the War of Independence was primarily a guerilla-style war between poorly armed and barely trained IRA volunteers and the British Crown Forces.
The British forces included the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) and The Black and Tans, the specially recruited auxiliary forces sent to Ireland to quell nationalist insurrections.
“The Commemoration Committee will be inclusive and ensure the widest reach possible, both locally and among the County Mayo diaspora," says Committee Chair Tomas O hEanachan. “We are issuing a call for support, including ideas, memorabilia and stories.”
On May 3, 1921, a group of IRA volunteers set up an ambush in Tourmakeady to attack the British supply vehicles en route to a remote RIC Barracks. Four RIC men died in the ambush, and a key IRA leader was injured. As the IRA volunteers took cover in the local Partry mountains, a second leader was shot dead.
Ultimately, the ambush was considered an IRA victory when, two weeks later, the local RIC barracks was permanently closed and other barracks closures followed.
Women members (Cumann na mBan) played a major role in this and other IRA insurrections, including providing food, hiding arms, nursing the injured and conveying intelligence.
For a list of volunteer women representatives from various County Mayo towns, visit the website.
At Home and Abroad: What The Centenary Year Will Provide
· Locally sourced commemorative art work and displays
· An online repository of primary and secondary sources, including memorabilia, photography and documents
· A lecture series by authors and historians
· School-based art competitions
· Musical and poetry compositions.
Take a virtual (video) tour of the key historical sites and battle locations at the website
Visit the Committee’s Facebook page for updates, photos and discussions.
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