Volunteer John Joseph Joyce

Volunteer John Joseph Joyce (aged about 22) of Midleton (Clonmult)

Date of incident: 20 Feb. 1921 (dead in combat)

Sources: CE, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 Feb. 1921; II, 24, 25 Feb. 1921; Military Inquests, WO 35/155A/53 (TNA); Seán O’Mahony Papers, MS 44,047/3 (NLI); Joseph Aherne’s WS 1367, 52-58 (BMH); Michael Kearney’s WS 1418, 21-23 (BMH); Patrick J. Whelan’s WS 1449, 51-58 (BMH); John P. O’Connell’s WS 1444, 15 (BMH); John Kelleher’s WS 1456, 23-24 (BMH); Patrick J. Higgins’s WS 1467, 3-7 (BMH); Diarmuid O’Leary’s WS 1589, 4-8 (BMH); Roll of Honour, Cork No. 1 Brigade (Cork Public Museum, Fitzgerald Park, Cork); Last Post (1976), 80; O’Neill (2006), 62, 96-100; Borgonovo (2007), 88; ‘The Irish Rebellion in the 6th Division Area’, Irish Sword, 27 (Spring 2010), 84-85, 143; Rebel Cork’s FS, 190-95; Sheehan (2011), 125; Midleton IRA Memorial, Main Street, Midleton; Cork No. 1 Brigade Memorial, Holy Rosary Cemetery, Midleton; Clonmult Ambush Site Memorial; Clonmult Village Memorial.  


Note: Volunteer John Joseph Joyce was killed in combat at Clonmult. He and his comrade Michael Desmond were the first to comprehend the plight of the Flying Column of the Midleton Battalion. As members of the column were almost ready to leave the farmhouse that had been ‘their common home for over a month’, Joyce and Desmond, ‘taking their own and their companions’ water bottles with them, went to the spring well about twenty yards from the house. They were engaged in filling the bottles when suddenly they noticed that a company of the Hampshire Regiment was surrounding the house. Though fatally wounded, they managed to raise the alarm. See Rebel Cork’s FS, 191.

Volunteer Joyce was one the eight children (five daughters and three sons) of the Midleton Rural District Council engineer Eugene Joyce and his wife Mary of 17 Main Street, Midleton. In 1911 all eight children were co-resident with their parents; they ranged in age from 2 to 12, and given that Mary Joyce was 37 years old (seventeen years younger than her husband), the size of their family probably expanded over the next decade. John Joseph Joyce was the oldest of their children. He was interred in the Republican Plot of Holy Rosary Cemetery in Midleton.

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