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Thread: McMahon Family Murders

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    Default McMahon Family Murders

    On the 24th March, 1922, six members of the McMahon household were murdered by the Ulster Special Constabulary/RIC simply for being a respected Catholic family. McMahon was a wealthy publican with several pubs in Belfast and his murderers told him he and his family were "selected" precisely because of their respectability.

    The day before, two USC were killed by the IRA and in retaliation the McMahon family were selected for a reprisal attack. 12 men came to their home in the middle of the night and the following were murdered -
    Owen McMahon (50) - Father
    Bernard McMahon - Son
    Frank McMahon (24) - Son
    Patrick McMahon (22) - Son
    Gerard McMahon (15) -Son
    Edward McKing (25) - barman.

    Another son Michael escaped by hiding behind a couch and playing dead.

    Previously on the 24th, 2 other Catholics - Patrick Murphy (61) and Sarah McShane (15) were shot dead by USC again in reprisal for the killing of the two USC.

    On the 1st April, 1920, 6 Catholics were murdered in what has become known as Arnon Street Killings.
    William Spellen (70) - Mr. Spellen had just returned from his wife's funeral. She too had been murdered a few days earlier. According to Mr. Spellen's 12 year old grandson, who was with him at the time, the USC stole the £20 he had on him to pay for the funeral.
    Bernard McKenna ((42) - killed in his bed. Father of 7.
    Joseph Walsh (39) - bludgeoned to death in his bed. His son Michael (7) was also shot and died the next day. His 3 year old daughter witnessed this as the two were asleep with their father. His other son Frank (14) was shot in the leg but survived.
    John Mallon (60)
    John McRory - shot in his kitchen.

    The Free State government investigated these murders and came to the conclusing the District Inspector John William Nixon had given the go ahead for the murders and may have participated directly in them himself.

    15 innocent Catholics murdered by State security forces in the space of a week.

    Craig refused to hold an inquiry into any of these state sanctioned murders.

    Unlike the Dunmanway killings of Protestants in West Cork, these murders of Catholics in Belfast are all but been buried and forgotten by the most.
    Last edited by runwiththewind; 24th March 2013 at 07:49 PM.
    If we got rid of all the papists, there'd be no trouble whatsoever. The place will be nirvana. Schomberg.

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    Politics.ie Member ne0ica's Avatar
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    Sad but true, best you can hope for down south is a 'Sure aren't they as bad as eachother up there'. One simply has to watch the news down here to see how loyalist lawlessness and Unionist sectarianism is often ignored by the media.
    Last edited by ne0ica; 24th March 2013 at 07:42 PM.

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    They gave the world a good laugh again recently though


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    Politics.ie Member Niall996's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by runwiththewind View Post
    On the 24th March, 1922, six members of the McMahon household were murdered by the Ulster Special Constabulary/RIC simply for being a respected Catholic family. McMahon was a wealthy publican with several pubs in Belfast and his murderers told him he and his family were "selected" precisely because of their respectability.

    The day before, two USC were killed by the IRA and in retaliation the McMahon family were selected for a reprisal attack. 12 men came to their home in the middle of the night and the following were murdered -
    Owen McMahon (50) - Father
    Bernard McMahon - Son
    Frank McMahon (24) - Son
    Patrick McMahon (22) - Son
    Gerard McMahon (15) -Son
    Edward McKing (25) - barman.

    Another son Michael escaped by hiding behind a couch and playing dead.

    Previously on the 24th, 2 other Catholics - Patrick Murphy (61) and Sarah McShane (15) were shot dead by USC again in reprisal for the killing of the two USC.

    On the 1st April, 1920, 6 Catholics were murdered in what has become known as Arnon Street Killings.
    William Spellen (70) - Mr. Spellen had just returned from his wife's funeral. She too had been murdered a few days earlier. According to Me. Spellen's grandson who was with him at the time, the USC stole the £20 he had on him to pay for the funeral.
    Bernard McKenna ((42) - killed in his bed. Father of 7.
    Joseph Walsh (39) - bludgeoned to death in his bed. His son Michael (7) was also shot and died the next day. His 3 year old daughter witnessed this as the two were asleep with their father. His other son Frank (14) was shot in the leg but survived.
    John Mallon (60)
    John McRory - shot in his kitchen.

    The Free State government investigated these murders and came to the conclusing the District Inspector John William Nixon had given the go ahead for the murders and may have participated directly in them himself.

    15 innocent Catholics murdered by State security forces in the space of a week.

    Craig refused to hold an inquiry into any of these state sanctioned murders.

    Unlike the Dunmanway killings of Protestants in West Cork, these murders of Catholics in Belfast are all but been buried and forgotten by the most.
    Not enough is known about these events and similar. Wrongly buried in history.
    Bringing reconciliation, mutual respect and cross community understanding to Northern Ireland through facts

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    Quote Originally Posted by Niall996 View Post
    Not enough is known about these events and similar. Wrongly buried in history.
    I believe these murders to be massacres. The deliberate targeting of innocent civilians solely based on their religion can be called nothing else.
    If we got rid of all the papists, there'd be no trouble whatsoever. The place will be nirvana. Schomberg.

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    Politics.ie Member Catalpast's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by runwiththewind View Post
    On the 24th March, 1922, six members of the McMahon household were murdered by the Ulster Special Constabulary/RIC simply for being a respected Catholic family. McMahon was a wealthy publican with several pubs in Belfast and his murderers told him he and his family were "selected" precisely because of their respectability.

    The day before, two USC were killed by the IRA and in retaliation the McMahon family were selected for a reprisal attack. 12 men came to their home in the middle of the night and the following were murdered -
    Owen McMahon (50) - Father
    Bernard McMahon - Son
    Frank McMahon (24) - Son
    Patrick McMahon (22) - Son
    Gerard McMahon (15) -Son
    Edward McKing (25) - barman.

    Another son Michael escaped by hiding behind a couch and playing dead.

    Previously on the 24th, 2 other Catholics - Patrick Murphy (61) and Sarah McShane (15) were shot dead by USC again in reprisal for the killing of the two USC.

    On the 1st April, 1920, 6 Catholics were murdered in what has become known as Arnon Street Killings.
    William Spellen (70) - Mr. Spellen had just returned from his wife's funeral. She too had been murdered a few days earlier. According to Me. Spellen's grandson who was with him at the time, the USC stole the £20 he had on him to pay for the funeral.
    Bernard McKenna ((42) - killed in his bed. Father of 7.
    Joseph Walsh (39) - bludgeoned to death in his bed. His son Michael (7) was also shot and died the next day. His 3 year old daughter witnessed this as the two were asleep with their father. His other son Frank (14) was shot in the leg but survived.
    John Mallon (60)
    John McRory - shot in his kitchen.

    The Free State government investigated these murders and came to the conclusing the District Inspector John William Nixon had given the go ahead for the murders and may have participated directly in them himself.

    15 innocent Catholics murdered by State security forces in the space of a week.

    Craig refused to hold an inquiry into any of these state sanctioned murders.

    Unlike the Dunmanway killings of Protestants in West Cork, these murders of Catholics in Belfast are all but been buried and forgotten by the most.
    Horrible events

    The violent period between the Truce and the outbreak of the Civil War in the South is one that is little covered in general histories of the period

    Some years ago while conducting research on those times I went through the newspaper files of the Irish Times in the Dublin Central Library

    I was struck by how many violent incidents occurred when ostensibly there was 'Peace'!
    If you can convince a People to engage in the mass elimination of their own offspring - you can probably get them to do anything...http://irelandinhistory.blogspot.ie/

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    Politics.ie Member ne0ica's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by runwiththewind View Post
    I believe these murders to be massacres. The deliberate targeting of innocent civilians solely based on their religion can be called nothing else.
    It was to intimidate the Catholic population. Mostly our leaders in the south did nothing but sit on their hands and do nothing. People forget that Michael Collins did send guns up North.

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    Politics.ie Member Dublin 4's Avatar
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    Until some soapdodger shot him in the back of the head...

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    Politics.ie Member cb1979's Avatar
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    One of the problems with discussing Irish history is that we discuss this period as if partition had existed for time immemorial. We can't discuss the Anglo - Irish War or the Civil War in just a twenty - six county context. The Parliament of Northern Ireland had only come into being in June of 1921, less than a year before the McMahon murders. Through the media and academia, southern society has had to ask itself uncomfortable questions about sectarianism and the treatment of Protestants in the south during and after the revolutionary period. No similar situation has happened in regard to northern Unionists and their treatment of the Catholic minority at this time. The equivalent of the McMahon murders isn't Dunmanway. It would be a contingent of Gardaí in uniform murdering a family of Protestants and then not being censured in any way by the new Free State government.

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    Politics.ie Member cb1979's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catalpast View Post
    Horrible events

    The violent period between the Truce and the outbreak of the Civil War in the South is one that is little covered in general histories of the period

    Some years ago while conducting research on those times I went through the newspaper files of the Irish Times in the Dublin Central Library

    I was struck by how many violent incidents occurred when ostensibly there was 'Peace'!
    Bizarrely, when we see sectarian murders at their height it's described as the 'Truce' period.

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