03 February-de Valera Lincoln Prison Escape

Michael Collins and Harry Boland organised the escape of Éamon de Valera from Lincoln Prison in London in 1919. Two other Irish prisoners Seán McGarry and Seán Milroy escaped at the same time. Once outside the prison de Valera departed from London dressed as a woman. He travelled by road to Manchester and later travelled to Ireland.

Éamon de Valera was one of the major political figures in Ireland during the 20th century. He served several terms as head of government and in his later years he served as President of Ireland. He had been arrested and imprisoned by the British in May 1918. The key used in the escape was made by Peter de Loughry.

Peter de Loughry was a native of Kilkenny. He took part in the 1916 rising and was imprisoned on several occasions for revolutionary activities. Following Independence in 1922 de Loughrey, who supported the Anglo-Irish Treaty, was elected to the Senate. He was elected to Dáil Eireann as Cumann na nGaedheal (which later became Fine Gael) TD for the constituency of Carlow-Kilkenny in 1927. De Loughry also served as Mayor of Kilkenny. The key, used in the escape, was presented to de Loughry in Dáil Éireann by de Valera many years after the event.

Michael Collins and Harry Boland organised the escape of Éamon de Valera from Lincoln Prison in the year 1919 On This Day.




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3 Replies to “03 February-de Valera Lincoln Prison Escape”

  1. Collins and Boland were given a suitcase by my great granny at the docks before they left on their journey to aid in Dev’s escape. Within the case was a rope and woman’s dress belonging to my great granny.

  2. Hi there.

    My great-grandfather Thomas McNamara was one of the stokers who arranged for Eamon de Valera’s trip to NY. I’m not sure of the exact details.

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