Findmypast has launched online British War Office records relating to the Easter Rising and Irish War of Independence from 1916-1921.
The following information is from Findmypast:
The collection, digitised from original records held by The National Archives in Kew, reveals the struggles of life under Martial Law in Ireland, and demonstrates how events under the occupying military served to galvanise support for the rebels.
More than 3,000 people were injured or killed in a conflict which saw three civilians killed for every one rebel. The records reveal the impact that the conflict had on men, women and children across Ireland. There are eye-witness accounts, interviews with civilians and reports of the trials of the leaders of the Rising and their sentences of execution.
The once-classified records shine new light on the subsequent period of Martial Law in Ireland which was declared by the Lord Lieutenant in 1916, including the War of Independence, when the British military assumed control of the executive, judiciary and legislative arms of the entire country. The contents of the collection provide a picture of what life was like for ordinary citizens in Ireland during this turbulent time.
The 25,000 search and raid records show the efforts of the military and police to discover arms, ammunition and seditious material through thousands of raids as well as their search for individuals associated with Sinn Féin, Irish Citizen Army, Irish Volunteers and the Irish Republican Army. Members of the public accessing the records on Findmypast will find the names of the thousands of people who were detained and interned in prisons in Ireland, England and Wales and tried by courts martial, including the names of prominent nationalists and elected officials.
Military correspondence between the barracks in Dublin and the War Office in London grants new perspectives on the motivations and fears of the British Army leadership. The movements and actions of several key nationalist figures are also documented, including those of James Connolly, Eamon De Valera, Thomas Ashe, Joseph MacDonagh, Arthur Griffith, Padraig Pearse, Francis and Hannah Sheehy Skeffington, and Countess Markievicz.
The collection was digitised in partnership with The National Archives in London and contains documents from their WO35 series, War Office: Army of Ireland: Administration and Easter Rising Records. Totalling more than 110 million records, Findmypast has the largest Irish family history collection available online.