​ The extremely rare confirmed Irish Dublin Easter Rising 1916 and Irish War of Independence 1916 Rising Medal and the 1917-1921 Service Medal with Comrac bar pair awarded to Private Thomas Shiel, Irish Citizen Army, of Dublin, also apparently sometime Carlow Brigade of the Irish Republican Army, who was commanded Robert De Couer and James Malin, and as an employee off the Burns & Laird Lines Ltd, a shipping company which ran the Belfast to Glasgow Service, may well have been involved in De Couer’s work in the passing of weapons from Scotland

Price: £4,750.00


Product ID: CMA/24138
Condition: Good Very Fine
Availability: IN STOCK
Description:

The extremely rare confirmed Irish Dublin Easter Rising 1916 and Irish War of Independence 1916 Rising Medal and the 1917-1921 Service Medal with Comrac bar pair awarded to Private Thomas Shiel, Irish Citizen Army, of Dublin, also apparently sometime Carlow Brigade of the Irish Republican Army, who was commanded Robert De Couer and James Malin, and as an employee off the Burns & Laird Lines Ltd, a shipping company which ran the Belfast to Glasgow Service, may well have been involved in De Couer’s work in the passing of weapons from Scotland to Ireland in the months leading up to the rising, and during the rising is confirmed as having been in Dublin during 23rd to 29th April 1916, and present in operations at Saint Stephen’s Green including the Royal College of Surgeons, Leeson Street, and York Street, and being then interned after the surrender, till released in October 1916. Shiel who changed his name from Shield’s at some stage, was amongst the very first recipients of both the 1916 Rising Medal and the 1917-1921 Service Medal with Comrac bar, and subsequently claimed a pension for his ‘military’ service from the Irish State between 1934 and 1957.  

1) Ireland - Republic of: 1916 Rising Medal, original striking from 1941, unnamed as issued, housed in its original presentation case, with card insert with English / Gaelic scrip reading: With the compliments of the President of Ireland, Easter, 1941’, and the outer card forwarding box for the same, this with a Dublin 148 post mark, and printed address for: Mr Thomas Shiel, 8, Emerald Street, off Seville Place, Dublin.

2) 1917-1921 Service Medal - the Black and Tan Medal, original striking, complete with the Comrac bar, and the top bar, unnamed as issued.
Condition: Good Very Fine.

Together with a more modern 1916 Armband, representative of the ones worn by Veterans up to 1941 when the medal was issued, bearing makers details for ‘Bergin’s - Real Irish Poplin’.
Thomas Shiel, surname at some stage changed from Shields, was born on 8th January 1876 in Dublin, Ireland, where he later lived. Shield was an employee of Burns & Laird Lines Ltd, a shipping company which ran the Belfast to Glasgow Service. He was also a Private with the Irish Citizen Army, seeing service in the section commanded by Robert De Couer and James Malin, and worked closely with the Dublin Brigade of the Irish Republican Army.
It seems probable that Shiel came in contact with Robert De Couer due to the latter involvement in procuring weapons via Scotland in the months leading up the 1916 Easter Rising. De Couer commanded the Citizen Army men based in the Dock area who were a vital part of the revolutionary struggle at this time. His duties concerned the ongoing recruiting of volunteers to the Citizen Army, and important intelligence was passed through him to Michael Collins squad of the IRA. Shiel would no doubt have had a part to play in the passing of weapons from Scotland to Ireland through his work with the Burns & Laird Lines Ltd.   

Shiel is then confirmed as having taken part in the Easter Rising in Dublin during 23rd to 29th April 1916, and was present in operations at Saint Stephen’s Green including the Royal College of Surgeons, Leeson Street, and York Street. He was also apparently associated with the Carlow Brigade of the Irish Republican Army, however when he claimed for pension payments for this aspect of his service he was declined, though his time with the Irish Citizen Army was taken into account, and he is shown in Irish Army Pension papers from September 1934 to August 1957, he having died on 15th July 1957 in Kilmainham. Shiel is confirmed as having also fought during the Irish War of Independence from 1917 to 1921, and as such was awarded both the 1916 Rising Medal and the 1917-1921 Service Medal with Comrac bar, when these medals were first awarded by the President of the Irish Republic, Eamon de Valera in 1941. Together with three files of research and copied service and pension papers detailing Shiel’s participation in the Irish struggles.


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