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LAW / UDA // USC / UVF (L-132a)

Image Information

Type Coin
Title LAW / UDA // USC / UVF (L-132a)
Date 1963
Country Eire
/Catalog #
Denomination shilling
Description Purchased from Ken Walker / Pontefract, West Yorkshire, UK. (Ot. 24, 2022) ($4). At first notice the coin seemed to be counterstamped with an unrelated number of acronyms linked only by their Loyalist affiliations. However, after further research it became clear that there were ties between the LAW / UDA obverse and the USC / UVF reverse organizations. The placement was also interesting in that the counterstamps were applied in such a manner as not to disturb or distort those on the opposing side of the coin. The Loyalist Association of Workers (LAW) was a radical trade union organized in 1971. They were closely aligned with a number of Loyalist paramilitaries but particularly the UDA. It was the UDA who flooded the streets of Belfast with thousands of uniformed volunteers in support of a strike called by LAW and Ulster Vanguard in the summer of 1972 protesting the power of the Northern Ireland Parliament. While the LAW / UDA connection dates back only to the early Troubles era the USC / UVF ties are much older. The Ulster Special Constabulary (USC) was a quasi-military reserve police force organized in October, 1920 to combat IRA attacks on the regular police force known then as the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC). The USC was formed largely from the remains of the old UVF, thus the connection. The seller discovered this example among a lot of coins won at an auction in West Yorkshire.

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Image Collection Irish Political Tokens (Loyalist Collection)
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