2214 (mainly) ex-officers signed up for the Auxiliary Division of the RIC. Little has been written about them, and in the strange world of those interested in the Auxiliaries, many go to great lengths to keep their information private. I have set out here to explore the backgrounds as full as possible of all men who served in the Auxiliary Division of the RIC, and hopefully it will become easier to open the book that has remained hidden on them over the years.
During a Cabinet meeting on 11 May 1920, the Secretary of State for War, Winston Churchill, suggested the formation of a "Special Emergency Gendarmerie, which would become a branch of the Royal Irish Constabulary." Churchill's proposal was referred to a committee chaired by General Sir Nevil Macready, Commander-in-Chief of the British forces in Ireland. Macready's committee rejected Churchill's proposal, but it was revived two months later, in July, by Major-General H H Tudor, the Police Adviser to the Dublin Castle administration in Ireland . In a memo dated 6 July 1920, Tudor justified the scheme on the grounds that it would take too long to reinforce the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) with ordinary recruits. Tudor's new "Auxiliary Force" would be temporary: its members would enlist for a year: their pay would be £7 per week (twice what a constable was paid), plus a sergeant's allowances, and would be known as "Temporary Cadets". A 2nd Lt in the Army would have got 16/- a day in comparison. The pay in the ADRIC went up to 21/- a day in late 1920. On top of the pay they got allowances, one months leave a year on full pay, and a return rail warrant. Allowances included rent allowance (11/6d per week for married man), boot allowance 1/6d per week, separation allowance (married men got 2/- per day if separated from their wife), 5/- per week plain clothes allowance - the effect was that a married man got an additional £83-6-0 per year on top of his salary.
Recruiting began in July 1920 Applicants had their military records and police references checked. This appears to have been conscientiously done, in as much as one finds letters on officers files showing that it had been carried out. Once a Cadet was then interviewed and approved, recruits were sent twice a week in groups to the depot in Ireland.
After a six-week course on policing at the RIC’s Curragh training centre, became operational in September 1920. As far as I can see, this six weeks was cut drastically as the ADRIC became established. By September 1920 five companies were operational, each with a strength of about 100 and by Dec 1920, the division was 1,154 strong. The rolls of the ADRIC show a total of 2214 men joined over the period of their existence. The Auxiliaries were nominally part of the RIC, but actually operated more or less independently in rural areas. Divided into companies (eventually fifteen of them), each about one hundred strong, heavily armed and highly mobile, they operated in ten counties, mostly in the south and west, where Irish Republican Army activity was greatest. They wore either RIC uniforms or their old army uniforms with appropriate police badges, along with distinctive Tam-o-shanter caps. They were commanded by Brigadier-General F P Crozier. Crozier resigned in Feb 1921, and Brigadier-General E A Wood took over command and ran the Auxiliaries until they were disbanded
1920 Sep 12. The first report of the ADRIC listed on the strength of the RIC gave a total 497 up 73 from the previous week these account for the first Five Companies A B C D E
1920 Sep 19. 563 men on strength of ADRIC, up 85 from the week before
1920 Sep 26 There were 591 men on strength of ADRIC. This overall strength increase coincides with the formation of F Coy, which on the 26th Sept 1920 had a first intake of 54 rising to 108 by the 20th Oct 1920. 34 were assigned to the Depot at this time in Beggers Bush.
1920 Oct 20. G Coy was formed with the first intake of 93
1920 Nov 3. H Coy formed with first intake of 60
1920 Nov 19. I Coy formed with first intake of 88
1920 Nov 19. J Coy formed with first intake of 26, rising ten days later on 29th Nov 1920 to a strength of 73.
1920 Nov 29 . There were 997 men on the strength They formed. 11 Company's A B C D E F G H I J K And a Depot Staff of 89 with an overall strength of 997
The 2nd in command (according to Reynolds notes to the IRA in Collins Papers) was Major MacVeigh - I cannot find him on ADRIC roll. Brig-Gen E A Wood joined ADRIC 20 Oct 1920 and soon after that became 2nd in command. When he was promoted to ADRIC commander in Feb 1921, Lt-Col F H W Guard became 2nd in command from Company commander of D Coy in Galway
They were supplied with Crossley tenders to enhance their mobility and their tasks included mounting raids and searches for arms, seditious literature and suspect individuals on their own initiative, or in association with other RIC or military units.
Two companies of auxiliaries were stationed in Dublin : F Company in Dublin Castle; and the Division's Depot Company was at Beggars Bush Barracks, in Ballybough. On 19 November 1920 these two companies together mustered 140 temporary cadets.
T/Cadet Reynolds who was in the pay of the IRA and later was in Irish Army, says in this notes included in Collins Papers, claims of the Auxiliaries "some were very good and about 10% were bad eggs"
1921 Apr 3. A letter from Lloyd George says that in the first 8 months of their existence 15 Auxiliaries were removed as a result of prosecutions and 59 were dismissed as being unsuitable
1921 Jun 23. Question in Parliament
1922 Jan 18. And at the end an agreement signed at Dublin Castle , by the Assistant Under Secretary, Cope, representing the Imperial Government, and six members of the Representative Body of the Auxiliary Division, duly accredited for that purpose which gave the Dispersal Terms.
Unexpired Contracts. - One pound ( £1 ) per day (or one guinea per day where such is the contracted payment ) to be paid in respect of the unexpired portion. Lump-sum settlements to be made as soon as possible and in case not later than the 31st March, 1922.
In the event of any Cadet accepting further employment under the Crown before before the expiration of his contract period, an appropriate adjustment to be made in the emoluments due in respect of the unexpired portion of his contract.
Expired Contracts. - Payment to be made at the rate of one pound ( £1 ) per a day ( or one guinea per day as the case may be ) in respect of the period up to 31st March,1922. This also to apply to contracts terminating before the 31st March, 1922.
These arrangements to be regarded as a final settlement covering all emoluments payable both in respect of expired and unexpired contracts and are framed with a view to meeting any possible hardship arising from the promulgation without Government authority of re-engagement of particular Cadets to 31st July, 1922, which was subsequently corrected.
An advance of £30 to be made to each Cadet on dispersal, the balance payable under the arrangement for expired contracts to be paid as early as possible, ( not later than the 14th February, 1922). Income tax to be charged according to law.
We, the undersigned, on behalf of the members of the Auxiliary Division ( being duly accredited for the purpose ) hereby signify our acceptance of the
terms set out above.
( Signed ) Wallis Muirhead . B R Durlacher. E.M. Nicol, E Fleming, J W Hescroff, R A Maloney
On behalf of the Imperial Government, I agree to the terms as set out above.
Dated this 18th day of January, 1922.
(Signed) A.W. COPE, Assistant Under-Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant. Chief Secretary's Office. Dublin Castle.
1922 Jan 20 Freeman's Journal reports on withdrawal of Auxiliaries from Ireland by the end of Jan 1922
Auxiliaries listed by Service Number
Auxiliaries Alphabetically indexed
Auxiliaries who died in Ireland
Auxiliary Companies and where they were stationed
The service records for the Black and Tans or "British Recruits" to the RIC are, or should be, in the main series of RIC service registers in HO 184/36-42. These may be accessed by finding the Service number in Jim Herlihy "The RIC A Complete Alphabetical Listing of Officers and Men 1816-1922" Four Courts Press 1999. There are also lists in the disbandment registers for "British Recruits" on a county by county basis in HO 184/129-167. (Disbandment registers for "Irish Recruits" are in HO 184/168-209.)
Pension records for the RIC including the Black and Tans are in PMG 48.