ICC Historical Lecture Series: THE ORANGE ORDER IN IRELAND IN 1922 by DEXTER GOVAN
IRELAND IN 1922
1922 marks the culmination of the “Decade of Centenaries” in modern Irish history. This ten year period from 1912 to 1922 commemorates the sequence of momentous events from the Third Home Rule Bill to the Irish Civil War out of which emerged an independent but partitioned Ireland. Our lectures this year examine events and developments in Ireland and Britain in the early 1920s which still have a powerful resonance a century later.
THE ORANGE ORDER IN IRELAND IN 1922
Founded over two centuries ago, the Orange Order remains a prominent feature of society across the island of Ireland. For its members, the Order is a fraternal brotherhood devoted to the preservation of Protestantism and civil and religious liberty. For many others, though, it is an archaic institution, viscerally sectarian and difficult to ignore. We are familiar with Orange marches and with rumours of dark and secret rituals conducted in the Order’s name. But despite this, and despite the Order’s pivotal role in Irish history, relatively little is known about the history of the Loyal Orange Institution itself.
This lecture examines the Orange Order in 1922. It looks at the appalling communal violence of Belfast and the border counties while also considering the fate of Orange Order members in the south. Using a combination of materials including those found in the once-secret archives of the Orange Order, it tells the story of a complex and conflicted society. It reaches beyond sensationalism and rumour and reflects on the significance of Orangeism to Irish history. One hundred years later, the story of the Orange Order in Ireland in 1922 has much to tell us about the anxieties of today.
Lecturer DEXTER GOVAN.
Award winning early career historian of Ireland and Britain. Justin Arbuthnott PhD scholar in Modern Irish History at the University of Edinburgh. Dexter’s work focuses on unionism in the early twentieth century and he has published extensively on contemporary unionism and left politics.