‘No middle path’: The Civil War in Kerry

The violence and divisions caused by the Civil War in County Kerry in 1922-23 were more vicious, bitter and protracted than anywhere else in Ireland.

For generations, the fratricide, murder and executions in Kerry have been synonymous with the worst excesses of the brutality and mayhem which followed the split over the Anglo-Irish Treaty of 1921.

In this new analysis of the conflict in his native county, Owen O’Shea offers new insights into the misery and mayhem of 1922-23, from the perspectives of combatants as well as their families as well as the wider civilian population.

Based on newly researched archive accounts and testimonies, the immense trauma, hardship, poverty, ill-health and psychological scars of the families of those killed and injured is explored for the first time.

Also presented is a catalogue of the intimidation, destruction, crime and lawlessness which severely affected civilians who had no involvement in the war but suffered greatly, sometimes losing their lives.

No Middle Path offers an engrossing account of the terrible events in Kerry and of some of the darkest days in Irish history as well as their shocking and enduring legacy.

No Middle Path: The Civil War in Kerry will be published by Merrion Press in October 2022.

‘No middle path’: The Civil War in Kerry by Owen O’Shea