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Dublin: 6 °C Sunday 20 April, 2014

Defence Forces unveils memorial to Michael Collins

On the anniversary of his death, Collins’ grand-niece unveiled the memorial and placed a wreath.

General Michael Collins August 1922 Ireland.
General Michael Collins August 1922 Ireland.
Image: (Picture credit: Irish Defence Forces/Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORB)

Updated 17.32pm

TODAY IS THE anniversary of the death of General Michael Collins. On this day 91 years ago Michael Collins was shot dead at Béal na Bláth in his home county of Cork.

The Defence Forces chose the anniversary of his death to unveil a memorial to the first Commander in Chief of the National Army.

Cathal Brugha Barracks

The new black marble stone memorial plaque, which includes a photo, is situated in Cathal Brugha Barracks in Rathmines, a place synonymous with Michael Collins. It was from here that Collins led the embryonic National Army in 1922. He also lived in quarters here which are currently occupied by the Defence Forces School of Music and his office was located in the now 2nd Brigade Training Centre.

The picture below is featured on the plaque and shows Collins walking through Cathal Brugha Barracks with a young civilian piper, Alphonsus Culloten, behind him. It was taken as he returned from a memorial service on the 7 August 1922 , a number of days before Collins himself was fatally wounded in Cork. The photo was researched by the barrack barber, Private Noel O’Donnell.

image

General Michael Collins August 1922 Ireland. (Picture credit: Irish Defence Forces/Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORB)

At today’s ceremony, Michael Collins’ grand-niece, Helen Collins laid a wreath on the memorial plaque. The Chief of Staff of the Irish Defence Forces Lieutenant General Conor O’Boyle said that it was a “very fitting memorial” to the memory of Michael Collins and he commended the soldiers for proposing to honour the first Commander in Chief in this way.

Here is the footage of Michael Collins’ funeral:



(Via YouTube/worchesterjonny)

Defence Forces unveils memorial to Michael Collins
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  • Michael Collins memorial

    Michael Collins memorial. Michael Collins' grand-niece, Helen Collins lays a wreath at the spot where the iconic photograph of her grand-uncle was taken in August 1922, in Cathal Brugha Barracks just days before he was killed in Cork. The Cathal Brugha Barracks barber, Private Noel McDonnell researched the exact location of the photograph and the memorial was then financed and paid for by the soldiers of the Barracks. (Laura Hutton/Photocall)Source: Laura Hutton
  • irish-revolutionary-michael-collins

    Source: © Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORB
  • Michael Collins memorial

    Michael Collins memorial. Cathal Brugha Barracks' Barber, Private Noel McDonnell, (reflected in the mirror) under the iconic photograph of General Michael Collins, at his barber shop in the barracks. Private McDonnell researched the background to the image which hung in his barber shop for years and with the help of the Barrack Engineer Section and the Military Archives, established the exact spot the picture was taken. Today a memorial was placed on that location on the 91st anniversary of his death. (Laura Hutton/Photocall)Source: Laura Hutton
  • Michael Collins memorial

    Michael Collins memorial. Michael Collins' grand-niece, Helen Collins lays a wreath at the spot where the iconic photograph of her grand-uncle was taken in August 1922, in Cathal Brugha Barracks just days before he was killed in Cork. The Cathal Brugha Barracks barber, Private Noel McDonnell researched the exact location of the photograph and the memorial was then financed and paid for by the soldiers of the Barracks. (Laura Hutton/Photocall)Source: Laura Hutton
  • Michael Collins memorial

    Michael Collins memorial. (LtoR) Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces, Lieutenant General Conor O'Boyle, Michael Collins' grand-niece, Helen Collins and Commander of the Second Brigade, Brian Reade, pictured at a memorial to General Michael Collins at the spot where the iconic photograph of him was taken in August 1922, in Cathal Brugha Barracks just days before he was killed in Cork. The Cathal Brugha Barracks barber, Private Noel McDonnell researched the exact location of the photograph and the memorial was then financed and paid for by the soldiers of the Barracks. (Laura Hutton/Photocall)Source: Laura Hutton

Read: Michael Collins’ heartbreak and naivety explored in new documentary>

Read: First military census shows pressures faced by 1922 army>

Read: What would Michael Collins think of Ireland’s banks?>

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