This is a timeline of the history of the Irish Republican Army.
Note:Articles prior to 1916 refer to armed nationalist movements that predated and presaged the foundation of the Irish Republican Army in 1913 –organizations such as the Fenian Brotherhood, Clan na Gael and the Irish Republican Brotherhood. All claims to use the title after 1922 (when the Anglo-Irish Treaty ended the War of Independence) are formally disputed, despite widespread usage in practice. There is a further dispute regarding the 1969 split between the "Official" IRA and the (subsequently dominant) splinter groups the Provisional IRA and Irish National Liberation Army, again despite widespread usage in practice.
The Irish Republican Army was an Irish republican revolutionary paramilitary organisation. The ancestor of many groups also known as the Irish Republican Army, and distinguished from them as the "Old IRA", it was descended from the Irish Volunteers, an organisation established on 25 November 1913 that staged the Easter Rising in April 1916. In 1919, the Irish Republic that had been proclaimed during the Easter Rising was formally established by an elected assembly, and the Irish Volunteers were recognised by Dáil Éireann as its legitimate army. Thereafter, the IRA waged a guerrilla campaign against the British occupation of Ireland in the 1919–1921 Irish War of Independence.
Michael Collins was an Irish revolutionary, soldier and politician who was a leading figure in the early-20th century struggle for Irish independence. He was Chairman of the Provisional Government of the Irish Free State from January 1922 and commander-in-chief of the National Army from July until his death in an ambush in August 1922, during the Civil War.
The Irish Republic was an unrecognised revolutionary state that declared its independence from the United Kingdom in January 1919. The Republic claimed jurisdiction over the whole island of Ireland, but by 1920 its functional control was limited to only 21 of Ireland's 32 counties, and British state forces maintained a presence across much of the north-east, as well as Cork, Dublin and other major towns. The republic was strongest in rural areas, and through its military forces was able to influence the population in urban areas that it did not directly control.
The Irish War of Independence or Anglo-Irish War was a guerrilla war fought in Ireland from 1919 to 1921 between the Irish Republican Army and British forces: the British Army, along with the quasi-military Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) and its paramilitary forces the Auxiliaries and Ulster Special Constabulary (USC). It was part of the Irish revolutionary period.
The Irish Volunteers, sometimes called the Irish Volunteer Force or Irish Volunteer Army, was a military organisation established in 1913 by Irish nationalists. It was ostensibly formed in response to the formation of the Irish unionist/loyalist militia the Ulster Volunteers in 1912, and its declared primary aim was "to secure and maintain the rights and liberties common to the whole people of Ireland". The Volunteers included members of the Gaelic League, Ancient Order of Hibernians and Sinn Féin, and, secretly, the Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB). Increasing rapidly to a strength of nearly 200,000 by mid-1914, it split in September of that year over John Redmond's commitment to the British War effort, with the smaller group retaining the name of "Irish Volunteers".
The Irish Citizen Army, or ICA, was a small paramilitary group of trained trade union volunteers from the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union (ITGWU) established in Dublin for the defence of workers' demonstrations from the Dublin Metropolitan Police. It was formed by James Larkin, James Connolly and Jack White on 23 November 1913. Other prominent members included Seán O'Casey, Constance Markievicz, Francis Sheehy-Skeffington, P. T. Daly and Kit Poole. In 1916, it took part in the Easter Rising, an armed insurrection aimed at ending British rule in Ireland.
Thomas Bernardine Barry was a prominent guerrilla leader in the Irish Republican Army (IRA) during the Irish War of Independence, serving as the commander of the 3rd West Cork Flying Column. During the Irish Civil War, he was a leader of the Anti-Treaty IRA, and its chief of staff in the 1930s.
Joseph McGrath was an Irish politician and businessman. He was a Sinn Féin and later a Cumann na nGaedheal Teachta Dála (TD) for various constituencies; Dublin St James's (1918–1921), Dublin North West (1921–1923) and Mayo North (1923–1924), and developed widespread business interests.
Liam Lynch was an officer in the Irish Republican Army during the Irish War of Independence of 1919-1921. During much of the Irish Civil War, he was chief of staff of the Irish Republican Army. On 10 April 1923, Lynch was killed whilst trying to escape an encirclement by Free State troops in south Tipperary.
Physical-force Irish republicanism is the recurring appearance of a non-parliamentary violent insurrection in Ireland between 1798 and the present day. It is often described as a rival to parliamentary nationalism which for most of the period drew more support from Irish nationalists.
The Irish Republican Army (IRA) is a name used by various paramilitary organisations in Ireland throughout the 20th and the 21st centuries. Organisations going by this name have been dedicated to irredentism through Irish republicanism, the belief that all of Ireland should be an independent republic free from British rule.
The Irish Republican Army of 1922–1969, an anti-Treaty sub-group of the original Irish Republican Army, fought against the Irish Free State in the Irish Civil War, and its successors up to 1969, when the IRA split again into the Provisional IRA and Official IRA. The original Irish Republican Army fought a guerrilla war against British rule in Ireland in the Irish War of Independence between 1919 and 1921. Following the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty on 6 December 1921, the IRA in the 26 counties that were to become the Irish Free State split between supporters and opponents of the Treaty. The anti-Treatyites, sometimes referred to by Free State forces as "Irregulars", continued to use the name "Irish Republican Army" (IRA) or in Irish Óglaigh na hÉireann, as did the organisation in Northern Ireland which originally supported the pro-Treaty side. Óglaigh na hÉireann was also adopted as the name of the pro-Treaty National Army, and remains the official legal title of the Irish Defence Forces.
Cumann na mBan, abbreviated C na mB, is an Irish republican women's paramilitary organisation formed in Dublin on 2 April 1914, merging with and dissolving Inghinidhe na hÉireann, and in 1916, it became an auxiliary of the Irish Volunteers. Although it was otherwise an independent organisation, its executive was subordinate to that of the Irish Volunteers, and later, the Irish Republican Army.
Sinn Féin is the name of an Irish political party founded in 1905 by Arthur Griffith. It subsequently became a focus for various forms of Irish nationalism, especially Irish republicanism. After the Easter Rising in 1916, it grew in membership, with a reorganisation at its Ard Fheis in 1917. Its split in 1922 in response to the Anglo-Irish Treaty which led to the Irish Civil War and saw the origins of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael, the two parties which have since dominated Irish politics. Another split in the remaining Sinn Féin organisation in the early years of the Troubles in 1970 led to the Sinn Féin of today, which is a republican, left-wing nationalist and secular party.
Thomas Hales was an Irish Republican Army (IRA) volunteer and politician from West Cork.
The Ulster Volunteers was a unionist, loyalist militia founded in 1912 to block domestic self-government for Ireland, which was then part of the United Kingdom. The Ulster Volunteers were based in the northern province of Ulster. Many Ulster Protestants and Irish unionists feared being governed by a nationalist Catholic-majority parliament in Dublin and losing their links with Great Britain. In 1913, the militias were organised into the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) and vowed to resist any attempts by the British Government to impose Home Rule on Ulster. Later that year, Irish nationalists formed a rival militia, the Irish Volunteers, to safeguard Home Rule. In April 1914, the UVF smuggled 25,000 rifles into Ulster from Imperial Germany. The Home Rule Crisis was interrupted by the First World War. Much of the UVF enlisted with the British Army's 36th (Ulster) Division and went to fight on the Western Front.
Florence O'Donoghue was an Irish historian and head of intelligence of the Cork No. 1 Brigade of the Irish Republican Army during the Irish War of Independence.
Brian O'Higgins, also known as Brian na Banban, was an Irish writer, poet, soldier and politician who was a founding member of Sinn Féin and served as President of the organisation from 1931 to 1933. He was a leading figure within 20th century Irish republicanism and was widely regarded for his literary abilities.
Cornelius McNamara, better known as Connie (Mackey) Mc Namara, was the Captain of "A" Company Active Service Unit of the Second Battalion Mid Limerick Brigade in the Irish Republican Army during the Irish War of Independence.