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RUNNING WITH CROWS – The Life and Death of a Black and Tan

March 7, 2013

It is 1921. In Ireland a war of bloody reprisals wages between Republican volunteers and Royal Irish Constabulary. Outrages are perpetrated by both sides in this bitter struggle for an independent Ireland. Meanwhile, in Dublin’s Mountjoy Gaol, Constable William Mitchell awaits execution for the murder of magistrate Robert Dixon. Who is Mitchell? Did he really kill the magistrate? What dirty political manoeuvring makes his execution inevitable? And who is the sinister and brutal, square-jawed man, whose life runs in parallel to Mitchell’s and whose path briefly crosses his – with the most tragic consequences?

‘Running with Crows – The Life and Death of a Black and Tan’ is my latest fact-based novel which recounts the true and tragic, but hitherto untold story of this forgotten man – the only member of the British Crown Forces to have been hanged for murder during the Irish War of Independence. Why has no-one told Mitchell’s story until now? Why were the official case papers so difficult to find? Why did so many murders, committed mainly by the Black and Tan auxiliaries, go unavenged? Is it possible this 33 year old Irishman was executed for a murder he did not commit? Did justice fail him?

This is the story they did not want you to hear. What became of Mitchell’s young wife, Alice, and his seven week old baby Kitty? Mitchell’s remains still lie in unconsecrated ground within the precincts of Dublin’s Mountjoy Gaol. Not for him reinterment and a Christian burial. Not for him a flag-draped coffin and a hero’s funeral. This man’s fate was destined to be consigned to history … until now.

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  1. Reblogged this on William V Kelly – Author and commented:
    Have to reblog this one. Excellent video!

  2. First review of Running with Crows came in on St Pat’s Day (with the blessing of the saint himself , no doubt!):

    ‘ excellent and well researched book … an interesting and enjoyable read … throws new light on the life and death of an Irish Black & Tan’ – The Royal Irish Constabulary Forum.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. A Black and Tan Executed – The life and death of William Mitchell | The Irish Story
  2. Constable Commits Murder in Dunlavin | West Wicklow Bookshelf

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