#OTD in 1918 – Hundreds of people visited the grave of Thomas Ashe in Glasnevin Cemetery on the first anniversary of his burial.

Thomas Ashe died in 1917 after being force-fed while on hunger strike in prison. The occasion was marked with the celebration of a Requiem Mass in the Church of St Mary of the Angels, Church Street, followed by a pilgrimage to the grave of the deceased patriot.

The attendance included members of Mr Ashe’s close family: his father, Gregory Ashe; his sisters, Nora and Hannah Ashe; and his aunt who travelled from Dingle. Fr Michael O’Flanagan, Acting President of Sinn Féin was present, as were other members of the organisation.

Following the church service, the pilgrimage to the Glasnevin involved about 500 boy and girl scouts, and over 300 members of Cumann na mBan, the latter joining the procession at Broadstone. Many carried wreaths and placed them at Ashe’s graveside, where the gathered crowd recited rosaries in Irish.

As they returned to the city, the processionists were closely observed by a large body of police.

Thomas Ashe’s funeral procession in Dublin city centre after his death in September 1917
Image | Bureau of Military History

Posted by

Stair na hÉireann is steeped in Ireland's turbulent history, culture, ancient secrets and thousands of places that link us to our past and the present. With insight to folklore, literature, art, and music, you’ll experience an irresistible tour through the remarkable Emerald Isle.