Wounded while fighting in Boland’s Mills

William Halpin’s old IRA uniform, rifle and ammunition belt found at his home in Dublin’s East Wall after he died in 1950s

Eamon de Valera  under arrest in Richmond Barracks after the 1916 Rising. De Valera was in command in Boland’s Mills

Eamon de Valera under arrest in Richmond Barracks after the 1916 Rising. De Valera was in command in Boland’s Mills

Fri, Jan 17, 2014, 01:05

After William Halpin died in the 1950s, his old IRA uniform, rifle and ammunition belt were found under the floorboards of his home in Dublin’s East Wall.

According to his grandson Terence Halpin, who contacted The Irish Times, it also contained a diary of his days during the Easter Rising where he was wounded while serving in Boland’s Mills. He was also involved in the War of Independence.

Terence Halpin recalled coming across stories of his grandfather in books about the Rising and in his own diary. “My grandad was a great union man who worked as a docker and was very involved in workers’ rights at the time. His diary makes for some interesting reading about the days of the Rising and mentions some well known figures of the Rising.

“There used to be a framed noticeboard outside the gates of Dublin Castle. It had the names of 14 or so IRA volunteers from the Easter Rising. “It was a roll of honour remembering some of those who fought in the Rising. William Halpin was on that list. It has since been taken down but must be stored somewhere for safe keeping.”

Halpin was involved with the Irish Citizen Army during Easter week and was interned.

The files state that he received a gratuity from the State for injuries received during the Rising. It also includes a claim that he was a member of the army council of the Irish Citizen Army prior to and after the Rising.

He served with the Irish Citizen Army from July 1921 to March 1923 for which he received a pension and was on the anti-Treaty side in the Civil War. At the outbreak of the Civil War in June 1922 Halpin took part in fighting in Dublin against the Free State army at Vaughan’s Hotel, Rutland Square (Parnell Square).