Identity Statement for James O'Donovan

  • Reference code: IE UCDA P75
  • Title: Papers of James O'Donovan
  • Dates: 1921–23
  • Level of description: Item
  • Extent: 14pp
  • Context
  • Content and Structure
  • Conditions of Access and Use

Biographical History

James O'Donovan was native of County Roscommon. During the War of Independence he was imprisoned in Mountjoy and Kilmainham prisons and later interned in Newbridge, County Kildare. He was an explosives expert and reputedly invented the 'Irish Wallflower' and 'Irish Cheddar' devices. He subsequently became Director of Chemicals with the IRA (1921).


Scope and Content

Copy correspondence mainly between James O'Donovan, Director of Chemicals, IRA, and Richard Mulcahy (Minister for Defence and Chief of Staff), concerning attempts to hold an Army convention, the subsequent split in the Army, and attempts by Liam Deasy to effect a termination of the hostilities.


  • Access: Available by appointment to holders of a UCD Archives reader's ticket. Produced for consultation in original format. Original material will be retrieved at 11am and 2pm only.
  • Language: English