The Black & Tans 1920-1921 by Jim Herlihy

The Black & Tans 1920-1921 – A Complete List, Short History and Genealogical Guide by Jim Herlihy.

Rightfully described as ‘Ireland’s foremost authority on the history of Irish policing and police forces’, retired Garda and co-founder of An Garda Síochána Historical Society, Jim Herlihy has published yet another worthy and authoritative book. Published by The Four Courts Press, the book has been released as we mark the centenary of the bloody events which ultimately gave rise to Irish Independence. I am sure few of you will be strangers to Jim’s well-researched and fascinating books, and this one, in particular, will hold great interest for students of Irish history and will also represent a great treasury for those researching family members connected with, or indeed affected by the actions of the ‘Tans’.

The book clearly explains all the different divisions of those units policing Ireland during the war of independence, ranging from the temporary constables – the ‘Tans’ – to the Auxiliaries. Some readers will be astonished to learn that 20% of the ‘Tans’ and 10% of their ‘management cadre’, the Auxiliaries, were actually Irishmen. In my opinion, this substantial and highly readable paperback deserves a place in the Irish history section of every library.    


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