The creation of Northern Ireland

By the beginning of the twentieth century, most people in Ireland wanted either internal self-government (known as ´home rule´) or complete independence from Britain. However, the one million Protestants in the province of Ulster in the north of the country were violently opposed to it. They did not want to belong to a country dominated by Catholics. They formed less than a quarter of the total Irish population, but in six of the nine counties of Ulster they were in a 65% majority. In the south, support for complete independence had grown as a result of the British government´s savage repression of the ´Easter Rising´ in 1916. War followed. The eventual result was that in 1922, the south became independent from Britain. The six counties, however, remained within the United Kingdom as the British province of Northern Ireland.