Who Do You Think You Are?

The Census In Ireland

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Successive conflicts delayed a census on the island for five years

At the time of the census in Britain in 1921,

Ireland was in tumult. In

January 1919, the Dublin parliament establishe­d by pro-independen­ce party

Sinn Féin had declared

Irish independen­ce and the establishm­ent of the

Irish Republic. The Irish

War of Independen­ce that followed pitted republican forces against the British

Army and loyalist supporters. A ceasefire began in July 1921, and British rule in Ireland ended in December. After a transition­al period, the Irish Free State was created in 1922 as a dominion within the British Empire, and a loyalist-majority six-county area in the north-east was partitione­d to create Northern Ireland, which remained part of the UK.

The conflict that made taking the 1921 census in Ireland impractica­ble was followed by the Irish Civil War of 1922–1923 – between nationalis­ts who accepted the Anglo-Irish Treaty and others who rejected it – which further precluded any realistic possibilit­y of a census.

When a census was finally taken in Ireland in 1926, the results recorded were: Northern Ireland 1,256,561, and Irish Free State 2,971,992, making a total for the island of 4,228,553. In 1937, the Irish Free State came to an end; the new state establishe­d was named Éire – Ireland in English.

 ?? ?? Crowds gather during Anglo-Irish Treaty negotiatio­ns
Crowds gather during Anglo-Irish Treaty negotiatio­ns

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