The Glenade Police Hut

While preparing a story on my Grandfather, Richard Davis, I recently came across three newspaper articles which describe a relatively minor incident in North County Leitrim in 1902, when Richard was twenty.  The incident of “The Glenade Hut” illustrates the major political fault line of that time, local community tensions, and Richard’s family involvement. I post this by way on an introduction to the next blogs on my Grandfather.

Portable RIC hut Co Mayo (Mary Evans Picture Library)

Seven years after this incident Richard’s father, James died suddenly, leaving the farm, and the future, to his sons, Richard and Alex.

To help follow the newspaper articles below here is a summary of what was said about “The Glenade Hut” and those involved:

In 1902 in Glenade near Manorhamilton a claim of intimidation was made by an individual there, by inference, a Protestant. The authorities responded by planning to increase the police presence in the area, and to locate an additional hut near the existing barracks. Richard’s father, James Davis (called Jas in the article) was part of a group of Orange activists who transported the new police hut to Glenade, against local wishes. The incident was raised in the House of Commons in London. James lived in Boggaun and his family from nearby townland of Glenboy were also active in the Orange Lodge.


The Sligo Champion, Saturday, February 22, 1902

Correspondence – Removal of the Glenade Hut

To the editor of the Sligo Champion

Dear Sir

A paragraph in last week’s “Champion” re the above omitted to give credit to the following loyal gentlemen who were engaged in the removal of the hut to Glenade, viz: Tom Anderson, Donaghmore, who some time ago kept an Orange Lodge, at the meetings of which the stentorian voice of Tom, and the rounds of ‘Kentish fire’ would bear favourable comparison to the brethren in Sandy Row; Jas Davis, Buggaun, whose son grabbed the evicted farms in South Leitrim; C Dennison, Meenymore; Edward Trotter, alias the ‘Evangelist’ of Tullyskerney. Some of these men are the descendants of the Pound Peelers who, in days of yore, cut the cravats off the necks of their Roman Catholic neighbours on their return from Mass at the R.C. Church of Glenfarne. Those and several acts of Orange brutality, perpetrated on inoffensive Roman Catholics of both sexes, are fresh in the memory of some of the old inhabitants of the district today. At the formation of Pitt’s Police (circa 1790_smcw) which were exclusively composed of Orangemen of the most rampant type, the Orangemen about Glenfarne were subsequently known by the name of ‘Pound Peeler’ on account of their atrocious conduct towards Roman Catholics. I am, dear sir, etc

Signed: An anti Pound Peeler

From the same edition

Leitrim County Council, Quarterly meeting. (excerpt)

Extra Police in Glenade

A resolution was received from the KInlough District Council protesting against the action of the Government in drafting in extra police to Glenade.

The Chairman said it was an outrage to see police brought in there. There was a Police hut in Glenade, and that should be sufficient, for it was one of the most peaceful districts in Ireland. When neighbours fell out it was no reason why the Government should levy a tax on the people by sending extra police.

Mr McGuiness- and the hut is erected within a mile of the barracks.

Chairman- a copy of this resolution should be sent to the member for North Leitrim (hear, hear)

Mr Fallon said at the meeting of the Asylum Board one of the Committee bragged that there was one man in North Leitrim had the backbone to give land for the erection of the police hut. The hut was conveyed from the Manorhamilton railway station to the barracks by four or five boycotts, and it now remained there. He was glad to hear the chairman speak as he did. Mr O’Donnell was a J.P. for the county and one of the heaviest ratepayers in their district and he knew there was no necessity for this hut or these extra police.

Mr Gaffney asked would the County Council have to pay for the extra police.

The Secretary said that he got no account of it.

Mr Gaffney understood that the hut was erected in the district on the requisition of a certain individual. It was most unjust that they should be called on to pay. The council should adopt the resolution.

Mr Kearney- as a matter of fact the man whom they were supposed to protect refused them the site.

A councillor asked what was the party who gave the site of this in Glenade.

Mr Fallon said it was Mr Corscadden

Mr Keane- And his son is a solicitor in Ballinamore (oh!)

The resolution was unanimously adopted.


Donegal Independent 14 March 1902

Extra Police in Leitrim

In the House of Commons,

Mr PA McHugh – I beg to ask the chief Secretary whether his attention has been directed to a letter recently addressed to him by Mr Tottenham, of Glenade, County Leitrim protesting against the extra taxation about to be imposed on the people of Glenade by the introduction of extra police; is he aware that the Ballyshannon Rural District Council and the Leitrim County Council have recently passed resolutions against the imposition of extra police in Glenade; will he inform the House of the number and character of crimes committed in Glenade during the past nine years; and will he have the extra police withdrawn.

The Attorney-General – Representations have been made, as stated against the employment of an additional force was sent for the protection of individuals who were subject to intimidation, and the preservation of public peace. It will be withdrawn when no longer required. I am inquiring as to the number of outrages committed in the district during the period mentioned.



“Kentish fire” is vehement and prolonged derisive cheering. The practice is so called from indulgence in it in Kent at meetings to oppose the Catholic Emancipation Bill (when passed Catholic Emancipation Act 1829). Source: Wikipedia.

“Pitt’s Police” – The bill (Pitt’s 1785 Police Bill_smcw), though withdrawn in England was successfully introduced in Dublin the following year, to widespread acclaim from the governing class. It was here that Sir Robert Peel encountered the new system of police during his tour of duty as Chief Secretary of Ireland, 1812-18. As Emsley notes, “the uniform, the discipline, and the organization of the new force suggest that Peel had imported into London many of the policing policies developed in Ireland to deal with civil disorder”. Source: Wordsworth’s Vagrants: Police, Prisons and Poetry in 1790s. Quentin Bailey.

RIC portable hut: Stock Photo thumbnail Mary Evans Picture Library – Portable hut for police in County Mayo, Ireland. A Royal Irish Constabulary policeman stands outside a portable hut used for temporary lodging when the armed constabulary are sent into a district where there has been unrest. This one is in Newfield, near Newport in the county of Mayo, overlooking Clew Bay. Published Illustrated London News, May 1870

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