28 January 2022
By Elaine Murphy
The current Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe has met with AIB Chief Executive Colin Hunt to view a letter received by the bank 100 years ago from then Minister for Finance, Michael Collins!
The letter, dated 27th January 1922 shows that Corkborn Michael Collins, as Minister, sought temporary funding of £20,000 (approximately €1.3 million in today’s money) for the newly formed Provisional Government of Ireland from the then Munster & Leinster Bank (which later became AIB).
It is part of a series of communications between the Provisional Government and the Munster & Leinster Bank that are held in AIB’s Head Office on Molesworth Street, Dublin City Centre.
1. Letter from Bank
[letterhead] Munster and Leinster Bank, Dame Street, Dublin
27th January 1922
My dear Sir,
We beg to advise that Messrs. Michael Collins and Alderman Cosgrave called here this evening and asked for a temporary advance of £20,000 for the Provisional Government of Ireland, pending “the passing of Ways and Means”, and the subsequent obtainment of Revenue.
We informed Mr. Collins that his Government were at liberty to draw the amount with pleasure, and we thanked him for bringing us the business. We enclose the copy of his formal application
P.S. Mr. Collins mentioned that the above was the first application made to any bank on behalf of his Government.
2. Letter from Michael Collins
Rialtas Sealadach Na Heireann.
(Irish Provisional Government)
27th January 1922
Munster & Leinster Bank,
I am directed by my Government to ask you for a credit of £20,000 (TWENTY THOUSAND POUNDS) for the Provisional Government of Ireland.
Please place the amount to the credit of Diarmuid O hEigceartuigh & Gearailt MagCanainn, both c/o City Hall, Dublin.
(Sgd) MICHAEL COLLINS