Seamus Devins

Seamus Devins of White Rose Cottage, Grange, County Sligo was Brigade Officer Commanding, IRA during the Civil War. He was killed on 20 September 1922 at Mount Benbulben, County Sligo along with five other members of the IRA. There are conflicting accounts surrounding the deaths of the six men. 

His widow Mary Ellen Cecelia Devins was awarded £67.10.0 during widowhood. She was also awarded £18 per annum in respect of her son Patrick.

Family Circumstances

Seamus Devins and Mary Clancy had married on Easter Monday, 24 April 1916 in County Sligo. Their son Patrick Pearse Devins was born on 6 June 1918. 

The Devins family would have appeared comfortable in early 1920’s Ireland. Mary was employed as a national school teacher. Seamus’s occupation was that of a farmer. Devins had been elected as a Sinn Fein TD for Sligo/Mayo in 1921 and returned in the 1922 General Election. This comfort would have been shattered by Seamus’ death. As Seamus had been in opposition to the treaty, legislation precluded his widow from applying under the Army Pensions Act until 1932. It is recorded in file that Mary received £500 from the winding up association of the Irish White Cross. The Army Pensions Act also made an allowance to pay for Patrick’s education fees. The family tragedy is heightened when on 16 October 1936 Mary Devins committed suicide. Her cause of death was recorded as lysol poisoning “she deliberately drank while suffering from mental depression”. The now 18 year Patrick was placed under the guardianship of his paternal uncle Daniel Devins. In 1944 Pearse Devins, then residing at Sheridan’s Hotel, Sligo successfully applied for a Service (1917-1921) Medal in respect of his father.

Related File:
Seamus Devins