New Book On Tragedy And Suffering Of Civil War In Kerry

Posted by


Author and historian Owen O’Shea with his new book ‘No Middle Path – The Civil War In Kerry’.

THE violence and divisions of the Civil War in Kerry are detailed in a new book coming to bookshops next week.

Historian and author, Owen O’Shea offers new insights into the misery and mayhem of 1922-23, from the perspectives not only of the combatants who were involved in the fighting but also their families and the wider civilian population in ‘No Middle Path: the Civil War in Kerry’.

Published by Merrion Press, it offers an 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.

It will be launched by former minister, Jimmy Deenihan, Thursday evening, 20 October 20 at Tralee library at 6.00pm.

Continued below…


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.

“For generations, the Civil War went unspoken in Kerry, a county in which over 170 people were killed in combat, executions or accidents. Incidents like Knocknagoshel, Clashmealcon, Countess Bridge, and Ballyseedy are perhaps well-known, but what is less-known is the incredible trauma and psychological damage done, which endured for decades,” said Owen O’Shea.

“Thanks to the publication in recent years of many new first-hand accounts of the war as well as the testimonies of those who suffered appalling ill health and misery in the years which followed, we can begin to revisit and re-evaluate this traumatic time in our county’s history,” he said.

Continued below…


Also presented in the new book 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.

“Because this history is so difficult for many people, including the descendants of those involved, I was conscious of resurrecting traumatic times. But if we are to understand why the Civil War in Kerry has left such a scar on the county, we must listen to, and more importantly, hear, the accounts of those on all sides of the conflict. I hope that this book will contribute to greater understanding of the war in a county where divisions ran deeper than most, particularly during this centenary period,” said Owen.

• No Middle Path: The Civil War in Kerry is published in hardback by Merrion Press and will be available in bookshops next week, priced €19.99.

It is now available to order online also. The book will be launched on Thursday, October 20 at Tralee Library at 6.00pm by the President of the Kerry Archaeological and Historical Society and former minister, Jimmy Deenihan.

Comments are closed.