Dublin Metroplitan Police observes the movements of ‘extremists’

1916/2016: a miscellany

February 9th, 1916

Dublin Metropolitan Police report: "I beg to report that on the 9th Inst., the undermentioned extremists were observed moving about and associating with each other as follows: Thomas Clarke was not observed in his shop 75 Parnell Street yesterday. Those seen to visit the place during the day included C Colbert (pictured) and John McGarry together at 12.45pm. John McDermott and Michael Foley between 1 and 2pm, Bulmer Hobson, M J 0 'Rahilly, Michael Hanrahan, Laurence Raul and E Duggan in 2 Dawson Street between 12 & 1pm."

A Danish labour paper publishes a letter from a business man who has just returned from a six-month tour of Germany. He claims that such is the level of hunger and desperation that there is now not a living cat or dog in the whole of Germany, all having been eaten. Animal lovers trying to hide their pets have been betrayed by their neighbours and punished. Storks, swallows, starlings, and all kinds of wild birds have been systematically killed.

At Newry Children’s Courts a number of boys, members of the “Clutching Hand” gang, were charged with pilfering 15/6 and some handkerchiefs from shops. One was sent to a reformatory and others to industrial schools for five years each. As they were sentenced they sang “Are we downhearted?” and cheered, and as each was received by the others with the sign of the clutching hand.

Bernard Hughes explained how they planned the robberies and said that with the proceeds they went to a picture house and enjoyed a sumptuous tea in a cafe.


"A military expert in explosives has examined the explosives and bombs found concealed in a drain at Leixlip, Co Dublin on 2nd last," the Weekly Irish Times reports.

“The large quantity of explosives mainly consisted of gelignite, a very high explosive of the dynamite class, and a large quantity of gunpowder and smokeless powderin tins. There were nine bombs, constructed from small one-quart tins with handles. These tins were filled with sharp pieces if iron and heads of bolts, packed round a gelignite cartridge, into which was inserted a detonator, attached to a few inches of safety fuse . . . It is, of course , perfectly obvious these bombs were not intended for the destruction of fish as has been suggested.”