Tides of Change and Changing Sides: The Collection of Rates in the Irish War of Independence, 1919–21
Sinn Féin’s landslide victory in the 1918 general election, leading to the creation of the separatist Dáil Éireann government by the Sinn Féin representatives, was followed in 1920 by local election victories by a combination of Sinn Féin and Labour. At the same time, the Irish Republican Army (IRA) waged a guerrilla war against the forces of the British government in Ireland. The first item on the agenda for these republican local councils was a vote of allegiance to the Dáil, rejecting the British Local Government Board (LGB) in favour of the Dáil’s underground Department of Local Government. This chapter documents the Dáil’s attempts to win control of rate collection from the LGB and explores its efforts to maintain this control amid centrifugal forces and the growing strength of the IRA.