Herbert Charles (Barney) Mellows joined Na Fianna Éireann in 1910 and was appointed Adjutant General of the organisation in 1916. He took part in the attack on the Magazine Fort in Phoenix Park at the beginning of the Easter Rising, before joining the Four Courts garrison where he took charge of supplies. He was interned in Stafford Jail and Frongoch prison camp until December 1916 and was subsequently re-interned shortly after his release until June 1917. Mellows renewed his role with Na Fianna but was arrested again in 1918 in relation to the “German Plot”. He escaped from Usk Prison the following year and went on to serve in the intelligence and organisation departments of the IRA during the War of Independence. He fought with the republican side at the outbreak of the Civil War in Dublin and worked for the engineering department of the IRA until his arrest in 1923. He was released from prison in 1924 after taking part in a 40 day hunger strike.
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