National Army Soldier Thomas Moore


National Army Soldier Thomas Moore (aged about 21) of 39 Main Street, Howth, Co Dublin (Malllow)

Date of incident: night of 18-19 Sept. 1923

Sources: CE, 19 Sept. 1923; MSPC/3D273 (Military Archives)


Note: Private Thomas Moore drowned on the night of 17-18 September 1923 while serving with the 38th Infantry Battalion stationed at Broadview Barracks in Mallow. His comrade Michael Kenny died in the same incident. See the previous note. Moore had been a merchant sailor in civilian life, earning £4 a week, of which £2 went to his father Joseph, described in the Civic Guard report of as ‘a poor man in humble circumstances’ who was ‘incapacited by ill-health’. Joseph Moore’s application for a gratuity or allowance was denied. He had received a weekly dependant’s allowance of 14s. from 3 April 1922 to 8 March 1924.

The denial of the father’s application for a gratuity resulted from the circumtances under which Thomas Moore and his comrade Michael Kenny met their deaths, as explained in a letter from the Southern Command HQ in Cork to GHQ at Parkgate in Dubin on 8 October 1924: ‘The deceased [Private Thomas Moore] . . . was stationed in Broad View B[arrack]s Mallow on 18-9-23 and was reported absent from quarters at 10:30 p.m. on the date. Enquiries were made next day, and it was ascertained that [the] deceased, together with another absentee named Kenny, had spent the night in Mrs Daly’s of Quartertown, Mallow, a house of alleged ill-repute. This house was at the time ‘out of bounds’ to all troops. Both men left the house at 4 a.m., and in order to avoid going through the town of Mallow, they attempted to cross the Blackwater in a small boat used by workmen at the Mallow Viaduct. This boat was found bottom upwards some hours later, and a search was then made for the bodies of the soldiers.’ Kenny’s body was found on 19 September, but Moore’s body was not discovered until 21 October, when it appeared at Fermoy after having been in the Blackwater for about a month. MSPC/3D273 (Military Archives)

Thomas Moore was in 1911 one of the ten children (eleven born) of the fisherman and widower Joseph Moore. Of these ten children, six co-resided with their father in that year at house 204 in the town of Howth. There were three daughters and three sons, ranging in age from 7 to 19. Thomas Moore (then aged 9) was the second youngest of the six co-resident children.

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