The O’Sullivan Beare Clan: Taking the Fight to America

When the rebels in Britain’s American colonies rose up against British rule in 1776, some of the most stalwart supporters of the cause of independence were the same Irish clans that had fought against the English / British rule of their own island for centuries. One of the septs that fought to the bitter end of Gaelic rule in Ireland was the O’Sullivan Beare clan of west Cork. The heroic and heartbreaking tale of Donal O’Sullivan Beare leading the remnants of his clan on a 500 kilometer march to join O’Neill and O’Donnell and the other northern Gaels for their last stand following the defeat at Kinsale in 1602 has long been retold by the Irish people. Branches of Donal’s clan would one day continue that fight nearly 200 years later in America, one of them with particular distinction.

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