#OTD in 1997 – Death of Lily Kempson, aged 99, the last surviving participant in the Easter Rising.

Born in Co Wicklow, Lily Kempson, trade union activist, lecturer, leader, as well as a rebel in the Irish Citizen Army, was the last surviving member of the Easter Rising of 1916. Lily and her family moved to Dublin when she was young. She lived in poverty: eight members of her family lived in two […]

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#OTD in 1903 – Birth of Róisín Madigan O’Reilly in Dublin. At aged 13, she became the youngest member of Cumann na mban.

Daughter to a German-born governess (E. Hessler) and an Irish Literature Lecturer, (E. O’Reilly) Madigan O’Reilly grew up speaking German, Irish and English and travelling sporadically to Potsdam to visit her mother’s affluent relations. Both her parents were staunch republicans. Her father wrote poems and articles for ‘An Claidheamh Soluis’ and, aged just 13, Madigan […]

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#OTD in 1916 – James Connolly vanished for a three-day meeting with the IRB military council where they agreed upon joint plans for an insurrection on Easter Sunday.

A secret meeting between Pádraig Pearse and James Connolly held over three days from 19 January 1916, where the outcome is that Connolly commits the Irish Citizen Army to join with the Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB) and the date for the Rising is agreed. In early January 1916, and in high anxiety that Dublin Castle would […]

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#OTD in 1897 – Birth of trade union activist, lecturer, leader, Lily Kempson, the last surviving participant in the Easter Rising, in Co Wicklow.

Born in Co Wicklow, Lily Kempson, trade union activist, lecturer, leader, as well as a rebel in the Irish Citizen Army, was the last surviving member of the Easter Rising of 1916.   Lily and her family moved to Dublin when she was young. She lived in poverty: eight members of her family lived in […]

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#OTD in 1917 – Hanna Sheehy Skeffington travelled to New York with her son, Owen, to speak about her husband’s murder during the Easter Rising.

In an interview with the New York Times, Hanna Sheehy Skeffington says she was determined to come to America to tell people about ‘my husband’s murder’, despite the British government’s refusal to give her a passport. ‘I am not willing to tell how I got here’, she said, before adding that she had been forced […]

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#OTD in 1885 – Birth of patriot and nationalist, Thomas Ashe, in Lispole, Co Kerry.

‘If I die, I die in a good cause.’ –Thomas Ashe shortly before his death. Thomas Patrick Ashe was born in Lispole, Co Kerry. He trained as a teacher in De La Salle College, Waterford and worked as a school principal in Lusk, Co Dublin. Ashe also enjoyed writing poetry and was a talented singer. […]

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#OTD in 1915 – Roger Casement visits Limburg after the full contingent of prisoners had reached the camp.

Casement is now doubtful as to whether the Brigade would be successful, he writes to Count Georg von Wedel from Limburg with his doubts. “I dare say a sham corps of sorts could be formed by tempting the men with promises of money: but an appeal to their “patriotism” is an appeal to something non-existent”… […]

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#OTD in 1915 – The Infamous Sabotage Order Against The U.S. and Roger Casement.

The Imperial German Admiralty requested that the military and naval attachés in Washington, Franz von Papen and Karl Boy-Ed respectively, initiate sabotage in the United States and Canada. This request only surfaced as a memorandum in the Imperial Foreign Office. Initially, the Admiralty envisioned the Irish nationalists to conduct sabotage operations in the U.S. This […]

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#OTD in 1941 – Jennie Wyse Power, Irish patriot and women’s rights activist, dies in Dublin.

Jennie Wyse Power, born Jane O’Toole, in Baltinglass, Co Wicklow in 1858. In the 1880s she joined the Ladies Land League and found herself immersed in their activities during the Land War. She would compile lists of those evicted from their homes and she also organised the Land League in Wicklow and Carlow. In 1883 […]

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#OTD in 1922 – Michael Collins Defends Treaty as Debate Resumes.

Treaty debate resumes in Dáil. An emotional Michael Collins said: “Well, the suggestion is this: I have my own feelings about the Treaty. I have feelings about it perhaps very much keener than Deputies who are against it. Well, I believe that the Treaty was inevitable, and this is the suggestion: that the men and […]

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