The Drumshee Rebels
‘Sunday 28 June 1921.
That was the day when Michael Collins came to Drumshee, the little farm on
top of a hill near the west coast of Ireland.
It was the first time Bridget had seen him, although she had often heard
her father speak of him. He looked like an ordinary sort of man, and it
seemed, at first to be an ordinary sort of visit. There was nothing to warn
her that a terrible time of danger and terror was about to begin for her
family at Drumshee.’
It was the time of the War of Independence. Michael Collins leaves Bridget’s
father a list – a list which the Black and Tans must never find. If they do,
it will be a disaster for the rebels and it will the end of Drumshee.
‘"I’m telling you, sir," said the voice…they’re planning
to blow up the West Clare Railway…"
Suddenly Bridget thought of the last words she had heard Michael Collins
say. What was it? Something about the West Clare Railway…?
Would she be in time to warn her father?’
Cora Harrison writes:
One of my great pleasures in living in this rural part of west Clare lies in
listening to the stories that the old people around here tell of the past.
of them have stories from this troubled time in Irish history, handed down from
parents and grandparents.
One of the stories which took my attention was about
the blowing up of the West Clare Railway and the other was of how the Black and
Tans drove into Kilfenora village, rushed upstairs in the house where the
Kilfenora Ceili band was practising, flung the instruments down onto the road,
and then deliberately drove the lorries over the trumpets, violins, drum and
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