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    ‘Reward of Merit Royal Irish Constabulary’ (Constable Michael Lavelle No. 62279 1916)

    The Easter Rising is Co. Galway is recalled at a two day auction at Dix Noonan Webb in London on February 27-28.  Lot 176 is a 1916 ‘Easter Rising’ Constabulary Medal (Ireland) awarded to Constable M. Lavelle, Royal Irish Constabulary, for his gallantry in the defence of the Police Barracks at Gort, Co. Galway, on April 25, 1916. This was Easter Tuesday, the day after the Rebellion started in Dublin.  At 7.20 am on that day there was an attack on the police barracks at Gort which continued until 10:30 a.m. The barracks was fired upon, and the windows were smashed. The rebels numbered 100 at first, but the number increased as time went on. Stone barricades were built across the road at each end of the village.

    The barracks was defended and held by five policemen, who were first called upon to surrender by rebels who threatened to blow up the barracks. It was attacked with rifle fire, and bombs were exploded outside. The police were called on twice to surrender through the Rev. Tully, but refused, and held on for over three hours.
    The rebels then withdrew to Clarenbridge, where they were reinforced by others. An attack was made on Oranmore Barracks. The attack there commenced shortly after noon. The railway line and the telegraph poles were cut, and a large hole was made in the bridge. The barracks at Oranmore was defended by four policemen until relief came at 7:30 p.m. through the arrival of a party of police and military from Galway. Lavelle’s medal is estimated at £3,000-4,000.

    UPDATE:  This sold for £7,800

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