They Dared to Challenge in the Garrison Town of Boyle by Barry Feely
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Barry Feely is well qualified to write this fascinating, highly detailed account of the revolutionary period (1914-1922) in his native Boyle, Co. Roscommon. His grandfather was a Fenian and his father Henry and Uncle James were both heavily involved in the Volunteers, with James becoming O/C of the 1st Battalion, North Roscommon Brigade during the first War of Independence. This family background has given Barry an intimate knowledge of the subject and he has also carried out extensive research over the decades. From archival sources, personal contacts and unrivalled local knowledge, he has put together a unique record of events in Boyle during a crucial period in Irish History.
In this book "They Dared to Challenge in the Garrison Town of Boyle", there is a rich cast of characters, including the renowned Guerrilla leader, Ernie O'Malley, who hid out the Feely's family stone cutting premises, pretending to be a stonecutter himself when the crown forces came calling. Among the many dramatic events covered is the story of how a prisoner was 'sprung' from the local military barracks, with the help of a British Soldier who later settled in the town. We also learn of the story of a senior RIC man who privately assisted the Volunteers, warning them when a roundup was about to take place. The book is lavishly illustrated with rare photographs of many of those who took part in the events that are detailed in this important work.