April 24,

The 1916 Rising at Today in Irish History

April 24: TODAY in Irish History:

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Patrick_Pearse

Patrick Pearse

Snippets of Irish History by Conor Cunneen IrishmanSpeaks 

Conor is a Chicago based Motivational Humorous Business Speaker, Author and History buff.

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1916: Rising Commences

The pivotal Irish insurrection against British rule in Ireland commences. The Easter Rising of 1916 had little chance of success (which its leaders knew) and initially had limited support from the Irish population, but a series of major mis-steps by British authorities lit a fuse that ultimately forced Britain withdraw from 26 counties of Ireland just six years later.

Patrick_Pearse

Patrick Pearse

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Timeline: At noon, Patrick Pearse reads the Proclamation of the Irish Republic outside the General Post Office in Dublin to a bemused, and some reports suggest, amused crowd, not realizing the import of his statement. Insurgents would occupy the GPO until Saturday April 29 and a rag-tag group of not much more than 1,000 Irish rebels would change history.

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Dr. Andrew McWeeney reading copy of proclamation on Easter Monday 1916. National Library of Ireland image

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Ten minutes previously, a group of volunteers led a botched attempt to capture Dublin Castle, the seat of British authority in Ireland. The first casulty of the 1916 rising was a policeman on duty at Dublin castle.

Volunteer Helena Moloney stated later ““It was at the castle the first shot was fired. I, with my girls, followed Sean Connolly and his party. We went right up to the Castle gate, up the narrow street. Just then a police sergeant came out, and seeing our determination he thought it was a parade, and that it would probably be going up Ship Street. When Connolly went to go past him, the sergeant put out his arm, and Connolly shot him dead. When the military guard saw that it was serious, he pulled the gates to.”

Buildings seized by the rebels included Boland’s Mills occupied by Eamonn De Valera and Jacobs factory occcupied by about 150 volunteers under the command of Thomas McDonagh. As it was a bank holiday, many senior British personnel were enjoying a race day at Fairyhouse race track. In general, the administration was slow to react. The first serious action took place and probably the first time authorities appreciated the seriousness of events was when a group of mounted Lancers riding towards the GPO were shot at, killing at least three soldiers.

The Seven Signatories of the Irish Proclamation

Patrick Pearse, James Connolly, Tom Clarke, Thomas MacDonagh, Sean MacDiarmada, Joseph Plunkett,  Eamonn Ceannt.

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DOCUMENTARY ON TOM CLARKE

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Want to learn more about Ireland? See these images and more in the acclaimed For the Love of Being Irish

Irish gift ideas. Best selling Irish booksRonnie Drew and Luke Kelly - Musical Irish Gifts to the worldJoyce Image in For the Love of Being IrishMichael Collins: Image from For the Love of Being Irish

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This history is written by Irish author, business keynote speaker and award winning humorist IrishmanSpeaks – Conor Cunneen. If you spot any inaccuracies or wish to make a comment, please don’t hesitate to contact us via the comment button.

Visit Conor’s YouTube channel IrishmanSpeaks to Laugh and Learn.

Tags: Best Irish Gift, Creative Irish Gift, Unique Irish Gifts, Irish Books, Irish Authors, Today in Irish History TODAY IN IRISH HISTORY (published by IrishmanSpeaks)

   

April 23,

The Day Before 1916 Rising – 1918 Anti-Conscription Strike

April 23: TODAY in Irish History:

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Eoin McNeil

Snippets of Irish History by Conor Cunneen IrishmanSpeaks 

Conor is a Chicago based Motivational Humorous Business Speaker, Author and History buff.

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1916: The Day Before the Rising

Approximately 1,000 copies of The Proclamation of the Irish Republic are printed in Liberty Hall in a print office set up by James Connolly. The proclamation will be read by Patrick Pearse outside the General Post Office on Sackville Street (now called O’Connell Street) on Monday April 24th.

The proclamation was printed secretly on an old and poorly maintained Wharfedale Stop Cylinder Press in the printing office that had been set up by James Connolly in the basement in the original Liberty Hall in Beresford Place, Dublin.

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READ: Printing of Proclamation

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All seven signatories of the Proclamation Pearse, James Connolly, Thomas Clarke, Thomas MacDonagh, Sean MacDermott, Joseph Plunkett and Eamonn Ceannt would be executed by British authorities.

Easter Sunday was a day of confusion and indecision amongst the rebel movement. The Irish Volunteers Chief of Staff, Eoin MacNeil, in defiance of Patrick Pearse, cancelled the planned manoeveres of volunteers, by placing a notice in that morning’s newspapers. Pearse and company had expected the manoeveres to be the instigation of a Rising, he and his colleagues knew had little chance of success. McNeil’s cancellation occured partly because he had only just become aware of the true nature of the manoeveres and also due to the capture of Roger Casement and the major arms shipment aboard the Aud of the coast of Kerry.

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An noon on Easter Sunday, Pearse and the Military Council decided to postpone the insurrection until the follow day, Easter Monday April 24th. Despite a long and bleak history of failed insurrections due to leaks and informers to British authorities, it appears that for once the Irish rebels were able to keep their plans secret.

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1918: General Strike against Conscription

Irish Trade Unions call a general strike in protest against the imposition of conscription in Ireland. The British Military Service Act of 1916 introduced conscription into mainland Britain. At the time, Ireland was excluded. However, with manpower at a  critical level in 1918, the government of Lloyd George started agitating for conscription of Irish males and on April 16, 1918 formally extending conscription to Ireland. Not surprisingly, it provoked a firestorm of resentment. While an estimated 200,000 Irish fought in the British Army during World War I, many had enlisted in the idealistic early days of 1914, partly prompted by Irish politician John Redmond, although the bulk of the soldiers were from Ulster.

Britain’s reaction to the 1916 Rising generated huge resentment and virulent opposition to most things English. Thus the proposed conscription legislation was seen as anathema to the Irish who no longer believed that the war to end all wars was to save the small countries of Europe.

The General Strike and anti-conscription activity gained huge support including a statement from the Irish Catholic hierarchy part of which read:

“To enforce conscription here without the consent of the people would be perfectly unwarrantable and would soon and inevitably end in defeating its own purposes.

‘Had the government in any reasonable time given Ireland the benefit of the principles, which are declared to be at stake in the war, by concession of a full measure of self-government, there would have been no occasion for contemplating forced levies for her now. What between mismanagement and mischief-making this country has already been deplorably upset, and it would be a fatal mistake, surpassing the worst blunders of the past four years, to furnish a plea now for desperate courses by an attempt to enforce conscription. With all the responsibility that attaches to our pastoral office, we feel bound to warn the government against entering on a policy so disastrous to the public interest, and to all order, public and private.”

In the light of intense opposition that almost certainly would have led to violence, the British government did not implement conscription in Ireland.

Dublin Archbishop William Walsh who led opposition to conscription

 

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Want to learn more about Ireland? See these images and more in the acclaimed For the Love of Being Irish

Irish gift ideas. Best selling Irish booksRonnie Drew and Luke Kelly - Musical Irish Gifts to the worldJoyce Image in For the Love of Being IrishMichael Collins: Image from For the Love of Being Irish

___________________________________

This history is written by Irish author, business keynote speaker and award winning humorist IrishmanSpeaks – Conor Cunneen. If you spot any inaccuracies or wish to make a comment, please don’t hesitate to contact us via the comment button.

Visit Conor’s YouTube channel IrishmanSpeaks to Laugh and Learn.

Tags: Best Irish Gift, Creative Irish Gift, Unique Irish Gifts, Irish Books, Irish Authors, Today in Irish History TODAY IN IRISH HISTORY (published by IrishmanSpeaks)

   

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