"To break the connection with England" Wolfe Tone

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Belfast 32csm commence centenary celebrations

Belfast 32CSM today commenced their centenary celebrations of the Irish Citizen Army with a wreath laying ceremony at the graveside of Winifred Carney in Milltown Cemetary in Belfast.

Winifred Carney was born on the 4th December 1887 in Co.Down. In 1913 she was leading the womens section of the Irish Textile Workers Union. During this period she became personal secretary to James Connolly and  was a leading figure in  the Irish Citizen Army.

In 1914 Carney joined the Belfast branch of Cumann Na mBan and on 24th April 1916, whilst holding the rank of Adjutant in the Irish Citizen Army, she marched with a contingent of republican soldiers to the GPO in Dublin, carrying with her a typewriter and a revolver.
After the 1916 rising she was interned along with other women in a British prison and was last to be released as party of a general amnesty of internees on christmas eve 1916.

Carney was a model socialist republican and an inspiration to the generations who followed in her footsteps. Winifred passed away on the 21st November 1943.

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1913 – 2013 Centenary of the Irish Citizen Army [ and the Dublin lockout]

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the formation of the Irish Citizen Army , which was formed as a direct result of the strike by the Irish transport & general workers union in 1913 know as’ the great lockout’. The dispute was over the recognition of this labour union founded by James Larkin. The conflict eventually escalated to involve 400 employers and 25,000 workers. This strike caused most of Dublin to come to an economic standstill and was marked by vicious rioting between the strikers and the Dublin Metropolitan Police, particularly at a rally on O’Connell Street on August 31, in which two men were beaten to death and about 500 more injured. The violence at union rallies during the strike prompted Larkin to call for a worker’s militia to be formed to protect themselves against the police, and hence the Citizen Army was born.


A contingent of Irish Citizen Army volunteers outside liberty hall in 1914 with rifles from the Howth Gun running

The Irish Citizen Army went on to fight in the 1916 Rising in Dublin and included many great Irish Republicans who shaped the course of Irish history, Men like James Connolly & Jack White & women such as Countess Markievicz and Kathleen Lynn – let us remember their sacrifice and courage in this Centenary year!

As this year marks the centenary of the Irish Citizen Army, the 32 County Sovereignty Movement will be holding a number of commemorative events in celebration of the brave men and women who volunteered with this Army. We ask you to show your support or help to organise your own commemorations to mark this milestonstone in Irish history!