June Fest Live Talks – Protestants in the Irish Volunteers, the IRA, and the Free State Army by Dr Conor Morrissey.
From the late 19th century, until the end of the Civil War, Protestant nationalists were a distinct group within what was a mainly Catholic nationalist movement. The lives of these nationalists were not always comfortable, given the politics of their coreligionists and the potential suspicions of the Catholic majority. Yet, a significant minority of protestants rallied to the nationalist cause and some paid the ultimate price in pursuit of Irish freedom.
Prior to Conor’s painstaking research, the role played by Protestant nationalists in establishing and securing the State remained hidden from view. On the eve of the centenary of the establishment of the Irish Free State, it is time to tell the story of the role played by Protestant nationalists in that epoch-making event. Conor tells their story graphically drawing on a wide range of primary and secondary sources.
Conor, who hails from Milltown, just outside Newbridge, in late 2019 published ‘Protestant
Nationalists in Ireland, 1900-1923. (Cambridge University Press). He is currently a lecturer in Irish/British History at Kings College London and previously held appointments at the National Museum of Ireland, Trinity College Dublin and Hertford College, University of Oxford.