Price, Michael (‘Mick’) (1896–1944), revolutionary, was born 29 June 1896 at Phibsboro, Dublin, one of four sons and two daughters of Michael Price, blacksmith, and Mary Price (née Hamilton), housewife. He served in the British army in Egypt during World War I, was involved in a mutiny, and on return to Ireland became involved in the Volunteers. In 1918 he spent six months imprisonment in Belfast under the name ‘James Murphy’; he served a further term in jail after being captured in the offices of Countess Markievicz (qv). Price was an IRA staff officer in west Cork during 1921, and his brothers Charles, Eamon, and Jack all fought with the IRA in this period; their sister Leslie (qv) was a secretary of Cumann na mBan, and later married Tom Barry (qv). Taking the anti-treaty side in the civil war, Price was in succession quartermaster and OC of 1st Eastern Division. Imprisoned in Mountjoy, he endured a hunger-strike, and escaped with Seán MacBride (qv) from an ambulance while being transferred to Kilmainham in October 1923. By 1925 he was OC of the IRA's Dublin Brigade. In 1926 he faced trial in connection with the IRA's raids on moneylenders, which he was believed to have directed. He was secretary of the short-lived IRA political initiative, Comhairle na Phoblachta, during 1929, and was for a period IRA director of intelligence.
In June 1931 Price was arrested on the eve of the IRA's Wolfe Tone commemoration at Bodenstown, in an attempt by the Cumann na nGaedheal government to stop it taking place. The IRA succeeded in holding the rally, forcing the government into greater repressive measures against the republican movement. Price was sent as the IRA's representative to the US during the government clamp-down of late 1931. He was involved in the launch of Saor Éire in September 1931. Although he had been wary of left-wing politics, over the next three years his political ideas moved sharply leftwards. In March 1934, as IRA director of training, he moved a resolution at the organisation's general army convention that the IRA refuse to disband till it had achieved a socialist republic. When this resolution was defeated, Price left the convention. He soon allied himself with the Republican Congress group, formed by Peadar O'Donnell (qv), George Gilmore (qv), and Frank Ryan (qv) after the same convention, and was court-martialled and dismissed by the IRA. However, at the Congress's first conference (September 1934) Price, along with Nora Connolly O'Brien (qv) and Roddy Connolly (qv) among others, proposed that the Congress become a political party, campaigning for a workers’ republic. O'Donnell, Gilmore, and Ryan argued that a united front of republican forces was the way forward. When their proposal was defeated, Price and his supporters split from Congress.
Price was then involved with the Irish Citizen Army, and after this body also suffered a split he became its leader. In March 1935 he was jailed during the Dublin tram dispute, and in the autumn of that year he urged his supporters to join the Labour Party. The Labour Party was not fertile ground for radical socialists in the 1930s; but Price managed to gain election to its administrative council in 1937, and eventually became secretary of Labour's constituencies council and was central to the party's brief adoption of the ‘workers’ republic’ as an objective. He was nominated as a Labour candidate for the 1943 general election but withdrew in favour of James Larkin sr (qv) (1876–1947). During this period Price worked as a clerk in the Hospitals Commission and married and had four children. He died on 17 January 1944 after a short illness and is buried in Glasnevin cemetery. Price is notable as one of the very few republican figures to become involved with the Irish Labour Party.