This autograph book was kept by a Republican in Mountjoy Gaol in 1917 and it contains the names of Republicans from Clare and elsewhere: here we see the name of Sean Treacy, Soloheadbeg, Co Tipperary, dated 21/10/17.
Clare Library http://www.clarelibrary.ie
Sean Treacy, (1895-1920) He was born 14 Feb 1895 in Soloheadbeg, Co. Tipperary, son of Denis Treacy and Bridget Allis.
From an early age, Seán had nationalist leanings, and in his teens he joined the Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB) which later evolved into the Irish Republican Army (IRA). In August 1917, Seán was arrested and spent two months in jail. The following year he was rearrested and spent four months in jail. Then on 21 January 1919, along with other members of the IRA's Third Tipperary Brigade, including Dan Breen, Seán took part in the Soloheadbeg ambush in which three members of the Royal Irish Constabulary, who were escorting a transportation of explosives, were waylaid and shot dead. This was the first military incident of the War of Independence. A few months later, in Co. Limerick, Seán was seriously wounded in a successful attempt to free an I.R.A. prisoner who was being escorted to jail. He recovered, and throughout the latter half of 1919 and most of 1920 he led attacks against the British in Dublin and Co. Tipperary. But on 14 October 1920, in Talbot St. in Dublin, he was recognised by a police detective and in the ensuing gunfight Seán was killed, in front of the 'Republican Outfitters' at No. 94 Talbot Street. A small bronze shield above the door commemorates the spot. His fiancée was May Quigley, and he was killed just eleven days before his intended wedding.
Ref: Ambrose, Joe (2007) Seán Treacy and the Tan War. Mercier Press, Cork.
Breen, Dan (1924) My fight for Irish Freedom.
O'Donnell, Ruan. introduction (2009) Limerick's Fighting Story 1916-21: Told by the Men Who Made It. Mercier Press, Cork [Originally published by The Kerryman in the 1940s]
Ryan, Desmond (1945) Sean Treacy and the Third Tipperary Brigade IRA. Anvil Books, Tralee.
He is buried in Kilfeacle Cemetery which is
about six miles east of Tipperary Town.
Sep 15, 1917 (IT) Trials in Cork
A District Courtmartial assembled at Victoria Barracks Cork, on Friday to try five menwho were arrested recently for offences under the Defence of the Realm Act...John Tracey, Solohead, Co. Tipperary was charged with having worn a uniform of a military character in the public street of Tipperary on the 19th August, and with having carried a hurley on the occasion.
Sep 22, 1917 (IT) Irish Courts Martial Findings
John Treacy, civilian, was tried at Cork on the 5th September 1917 and was found guilty of an offence against the Regulation prohibiting unauthorised wearing of uniform of a military character, and carrying an article capable of being used as a weapon, and has been sentenced to six months' imprisonment with hard labour.
Ireland, Prison Registers
Also: Bridget Treacy
Prisoner 1917 Dundalk, Louth, Ireland
Residence: Sologheadbeg Co Tipp
Age: 22 b. Sologheadbeg Co Tipp
Offence: Breach D O R A
Item: 2 Book: 1/16/1 County: Louth
Sean Treacy by Dominic Behan http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SNkD3oJczuk&feature=related
Sean Treacy 'Tipperary so Far Away' by The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Maken http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=enBpyP84EQA
Sean Tracy – WolfHound http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90xMvXyrPYk
Sean Treacy - Tipperary So Far Away- Brian Corrigan Erins Own http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ayxPm0VwOrg&feature=related
Sean Treacy by The Threshing Mill Boys http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOpQG0ThiRQ
Dan Breen Interview 1967 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=emBbgo1DZTk
Bureau of Military History (1913-1921) - Witness Statements
W/S No: 1763
Address: St. Kevin's Park, Dartry, Dublin 6
Brigade: 3rd Tipperary Brigade
by Dominic Behan
Give me a Parabellum and a bandoleer of shells,
I'll wait in ambush for some men and I'll blow them all to hell,
For just today, I heard them say that Treacy met defeat,
Our lovely Séan is dead and gone, shot down in Talbot Street.
They were at the front and at the back; they were all around the place.
None of them anxious to attack; or meet him face to face.
Lloyd George did say, 'You'll get your pay - and a holiday most complete',
But none of them knew what they would go through, in that house in Talbot Street.
When he saw them in their Crossley trucks, like the fox inside his lair,
Séan waited for to size them up before he did emerge,
With blazing guns he met the Huns, and forced them to retreat,
He shot them in pairs coming down the stairs, in that house in Talbot Street.
'Come on', he cried, 'Come show your hand, you have boasted for so long,
How you would crush this rebel band with your armies great and strong'.
'No surrender', was his war cry, 'Fight on lads, no retreat'
Brave Treacy cried before he died, shot down in Talbot Street.
Sean Treacy by J. Crofts
We often heard our fathers tell
How in the Fenian times
The noblest of Tipperary's sons
Imprisoned spent their lives.
Those tales we can hear daily,
And the deeds of valiant men,
As the war goes on unceasingly
Through valley, hill and glen.
They searched for Sean at midnight;
His comrade with him slept.
Macready's murdering bloodhounds
In silence on them crept.
Our heroes fought as brave men should
And made a gallant fight;
With bullet food they did conclude
The lives of Smith and White.
In a crowded Dublin Street Sean died
On a dim October day;
The story will be told with pride
While men in Eirinn stay.
With trusty gun held in his hand,
Two sleuth hounds he laid low:
'Twas well they knew this island through
They had no brave foe.
When the British saw the battle
They shook with fear and dread
A machine gun then did rattle
And our hero bold lay dead.
Sean Treacy killed! Sean Treacy killed!
Was borne along the breeze.
No bells were rung; no caoin was sung;
He died for Ireland free.
While grass grows green in Eirinn
We'll think of you, brave Sean!
We'll sing your praise o'er hill and vale
When grief and gloom are gone.
And when the dawn of Freedom's sun
Shines out in Eirinn's skies,
In our Gaelic tongue we'll tell our sons
How brave Sean Treacy died.
Sean Treacy by Peadar Kearney
To you! O Flower of Ireland’s Youth,
Across the grave we send a Nation’s praise
Hailing your name - the greatest name of all,
Young Ireland’s pioneers!
Chanting your courage cool;
Your deathless love for her,
Your changeless hate for those
Who sough her soul to rend-
Those you pursued and slew
Those you destroyed and conquered
To the end.
(Air: Spailpin a Rúin)
A Threasaigh cháidh! Molaim-se do láimh,
Cé go bfhuil tú go tláth ‘san uaig anois.
Ba láidir tú i bpáirt i n-aghaidh Ropoirí Sheáin
Bhí ar buile ‘sar fán trid an nduithche.
I dteangain na mBárd, béidh t’ainm go h-árd,
Mar gheall ar do grádh d’ár staire-
Do throidis gach lá go meanmnach grádhach
Ag saothrú siothcán agus buaidh dhi.
Is truagh linn tú ar lár id’ óige ‘sid bhláth,
Nuair atáimid ag tnú le saoirse.
Ach mairfidh do cháil an fhaid a bheidh trácht
Ar fhearaibh gan sgáth ‘ sa tír seo.
Roimh ghramaisg an áir do seóladh thar sáil’
I leith go h-oileán ár sínnsear,
Ag dóghadh ‘sa robáil ar fuaid Inse Fáil,
‘S ag creachadh gan náir’ ár ndaoine.
Meireach tusa ‘s do shórt do bheimís go deó
Mar bhacaigh ag cur stró ar gach éinne
Mar do sgiobadh ár stór’ sár maoin ós ár gcómhair
Mar sguabtar an ceó des na sléibhte.
Ba cheap-magaidh is spóirt ár mbuaidhreamh ‘sár mbrón
Ag an Sgriosadóir Seón úd an Eirligh,
Gur airigh sé an gleó ar gach taobh de go beó
‘S gur mhothuigh sé cómacht bhúr bpiléar-na.
Anois codail go sámh, a Ogánaigh breágh,
‘San roilg sin lámh led’ ghaoltaibh,
No go dtagaidh an lá nuair a ghlaodhfar go h-árd
Ar ár shíolruigh ó Adhamh agus Eabha.
I bhFlathas na ngrást go rabhair go h-árd
I measg sgata breágh lághach de Gaedhealaibh,
Is go raibh sé indán dom féin tar éis bháis
Bheith i d’ fhochair i láthair an Aon-Mhic!
O mild O’Treasaigh! I praise your strong hand,
Atho’ you lie limp in the grave. Strong indeed
Was your part against the Saxon ravishers running
Stark mad through the land.
In the Tongue of the Bards your name will be on high
For your love for our own Love,
Each day you fought with courage and yet magnanimously,
Striving to bring her peace and victory.
We mourn that you are stretched low in your youth and
Bloom even as we await freedom,
But your fame shall live as long as our heroes are
Commemorated in our land.
Before that slaughtering rabble that were hurled
On us from beyond the sea on the island of our
Ancestors, burning and ravaging all Inis Fail,-
And shamelessly plundering the people-
Ah, well, but for you and your comrades, we should
Have been for ever like a beggar asking alms from
All and each. Because our wealth and store were
Swept away like mists from the hills.
Our sorrow and anguish were but a laughing stock and a mockery
To yon John of the destruction and
Slaughter; until he heard the noise of battle all round
Him, and felt the power of you rifles.
Sleep gently then, brave Soldier in the Churchyard
Beside your kindred. Until the day comes
When all the seed and kindred of Adam and Eve
Shall be called from their graves.
In God’s Heaven may you be among the kind
And gentle kin of all the Gael,
And may it be my fate to be with you in the presence
Of God’s Only Son!
The moon shone down in Talbot Street
Where a dying rebel lay,
His arms were crossed and his body was stretched,
And his life blood flowed away.
A passing comrade heard his moans,
And the sufferer soon was found,
He gently raised his aching head,
Up from the cold damp ground.
" Softly, gently, comrade," he cried,
" No longer on earth must I stay,
" I will never more roam to my own native home
" In Tipperary far away.
" A lock of my hair I pray you take,
" To my mother so far away,
" And so as she will gaze on it,
" She fondly will think of me.
" Tell her it's down by the Liffeyside,
" My mouldering bones do lay,
" There's a vision of light, before me to-night
" In Tipperary far away."
His comrades gathered round him,
To bid him his last farewell,
He was as brave a young soldier
As ever in battle fell.
They dug a grave and beneath they laid,
Sean Treacy, brave and gay,
Who will never more roam to his own native home
In Tipperary far away.
The Station of Knocklong.
The news has spread thro' Ireland and spread from shore to shore
Of such a deed no living man has ever heard before,
From out a guarded carriage 'mid a panic-stricken throng
Sean Hogan he was rescued at the Station of Knocklong.
When a guard of four policemen had their prisoner minded well
As the fatal train sped o'er the rails conveying him to his cell,
The prisoner then could scarce foretell of hearts both brave and strong
That were planning for his rescue at the Station of Knocklong.
The shades of eve were falling fast when the train at last drew in
It was halted for an hour or so by a few courageous men
They sprang into the carriage and it did not take them long,
" Hands up or die " was the rebel cry at the Station of Knocklong.
Now King George's pampered hirelings they shrivelled up with fear
And thought of how they placed in cells full many a Volunteer
Now, face to face with armed men to escape how they did long
But two of them met with traitors' deaths at the Station of Knocklong.
From Solohead to Limerick such deeds as these were seen
And devil a tear was ever shed for Wallace of Roskeen,
They did Old England's dirty work and did that work too long
But the renegades were numbered up at the Station of Knocklong.
Now rise up Mother Erin and always be of cheer,
You'll never die while at your side there stand such Volunteers,
From Dingle Bay to Garryowen the cheers will echo long
Of the rescue of Sean Hogan at the Station of Knocklong.
(Air : The Snowy-Breasted Pearl)
'Twas a cold December day
A lorry ploughed its way
Midst bullets splash and play
On Ashtown road.
In that car a living tool
Of England's hated rule
There was begun a duel
On Ashtown road.
Young Savage, unafraid,
With rifle and grenade
Attacked them undismayed
On Ashtown road.
But a bullet laid him low
From a rifle of the foe
That's another debt we owe
For Ashtown road.
But another day shall dawn
Like that cold December mom
When a Martyr's name was born
On Ashtown road.
We laid him in a grave
Where the willows sadly wave
Oh, Son of Erin brave
Farewell to thee.
Second Anniversary Obituary Notices
Irish Independent Oct 14, 1922
The second anniversary of Sean Allis Treacy was observed as a general holiday in Tipperary. Photograph shows crowds around the grave at Kilfeacle cemetery during an oration.
Freeman’s Journal, Oct 23, 1922
Dec 19, 1923 (FJ) In Memoriam
Savage - In proud and glorious memory of our dear comrade, Lieut. Martin Savage, who gave his life for Ireland 19th December 1919, at Ashtown, Co. Dublin; also his comrades of that day, Tom Keogh, Seagan Tracy and Seagan Doyle. Inserted by their comrades O'Daly and Leonard.
Last update: 29 January 2013