MIDNIGHT IN LONDON
The Anglo-Irish Treaty Crisis 1921
Ebook edition available
During the night of 5–6 December 1921, Irish delegates at Downing Street signed an agreement to end the War of Independence and create a new Irish state. This is the story of that fraught deal, and of the events and people behind it. The story is told from original sources and eyewitness accounts, and brings to life the Treaty that sparked a civil war but made modern Ireland. Irish negotiators were under great pressure in London. For nearly two months Arthur Griffith, Michael Collins and three others faced some of the most powerful men in the British Empire, including Lloyd George and Winston Churchill. Griffith and Collins saw the Treaty as a stepping-stone to greater freedom. Both were dead within a year. Colum Kenny turns a spotlight on the key issues and problems they faced, examining why Éamon de Valera stayed away and what the delegates themselves achieved. Ireland was already partitioned when the talking started. The choice was whether or not to fight on for some kind of republic – or accept Britain’s offer of limited independence. Why and how the deal was done is laid out fairly here, for any reader with an interest in Irish history
Dr Colum Kenny BL is Professor Emeritus, Dublin City University, a journalist and an honorary bencher of King’s Inns. Awarded the Irish Legal History Society’s Gold Medal, his books include histories of King’s Inns, an account of Irish emigration to the USA, a biography of Arthur Griffith and most recently, Kenmare: History and Survival (Eastwood Books).