The Early Days! Carrickmacross Emmets have been in existence since 1887 and are reckoned to be the oldest club in County Monaghan. In 1884 a great revival in Gaelic games was underway with clubs springing up all over the county but they had no real organisation or supervision and the many tournaments that were being run ended in disorder and chaos! By 1887 all counties were instructed by the GAA to affiliate to the governing body under the rules of the Association. The first ever GAA meeting in Monaghan was held in O'Neills Hotel in Carrickmacross on the 27th December to elect a County Committee, it was attended by the Carrickmacross Sextons and the Carrickmacross O'Briens; both remnants of the original Emmets team; this split arose out of a complete disunion within the GAA which had taken place in November 1887. The first official meeting of the new County Board was also held in O'Neills Hotel in February 1888; when it was decided to hold a Football Championship at Capragh on the 27th May. The Carrickmacross Sextons reached the final of the competition but were well beaten by the Inniskeen Grattans who went on to represent Monaghan in the All-Ireland championship! Later that year the Carrickmacross Emmets made their reappearance as a team; with a challenge match against the Baileborough Raparees which was played at Shercock on July 29th with the return game being staged in a field close to Carrickmacross town on 5th August; both games proved to be a great success for both the players and supporters.
The following year the Sextons and the O'Briens still represented the town in the County Football Championship; however with the GAA in disarray in Monaghan; the competition never concluded. Next mention of the Emmets came to notice in April 1896 when they played the Aghalile Grattan's in a challenge match and again in August when they played Virginia Sarsfields in the Killann Tournament. In October of the same year the Emmets ran a fine football tournament in close proximity to the town and the vast crowd of spectators were thoroughly satisfied with the day's proceedings. In the subsequent years; games were practically non-existent in relation to gaelic activity and it was 1901 before we read about a football game near Carrickmacross "The pitch wasn't properly marked and so ended the tournament under the auspices of the Carrickmacross Gaelic club whose existence is a myth"
Then on September 26th 1903, a meeting of those interested in Gaelic games was held in the Foresters Hall, Carrickmacross to elect officers and to establish the club to the County Board. By coincidence it was also the Centenary of the death of Robert Emmet; the identity formerly associated with the original Carrickmacross team; it was unanimously agreed to again adopt the name of the young Irish patriot! The following month the new Emmets travelled to Kingscourt to play the local Sinn Fein team in a challenge match. By January 1904, the Emmets were in full swing when they played Inniskeen to a draw match; they also participated in tournaments at Killanny, Killark and Magheracloone as well as running their own tournament competition. Also in 1904 the first inter-county match to be played in many years was organised by the Cavan Foresters; it was played at the Cavan Agricultural grounds between Cavan and Monaghan; with the Emmets representing Monaghan and the Slashers representing Cavan! On 12th May a meeting of the established clubs met in the Foresters Hall to put in place foundations for a new and vibrant Association in Monaghan in which the Carrickmacross Emmets would ultimately play a huge part as one the foremost teams in Gaelic football!