|Actors portraying "Black & Tans."|
On their return they were stopped by a group of Black & Tans. Uncle Jack suspected that they were stopped mostly because their group included a number of attractive young women.
Uncle Jack tried to stay in the background and avoid drawing attention to himself as they interrogated the group. He had good reason for this behavior -- he was working with the IRA (although he was still only in his teens, he would become one of their primary bomb experts during the independence struggle).
Jack’s younger brother, Uncle Ned, however, wasn't trying to be inconspicuous. Possibly to show off for the ladies, maybe because he'd a had a few nips at the dance, or maybe it was just his nature, Ned, only about 15 or 16, decided to confront the "Black & Tans."
|Uncle Jack Meade & his sister, my Grandmother,|
Johanna Callahan (née Meade) about 1975.
Late the following morning the family heard a large truck driving up the lane. They looked out and saw an Auxiliary Division of the Royal Irish Constabulary (ADRIC) vehicle stop briefly near the home and then continue on. The family went out and found Ned staggering up to the house. He was beaten and bruised. Several of his fingernails had been pulled out.
The family said that Uncle Ned never really recovered from this. Before he’d been a bit wild, but mostly good-natured, but afterwards he was argumentative and belligerent. His temper was short and he always seemed to be “looking for a fight.” He never married.