#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 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 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 2003 – Death of Bridget Dirrane who died at the age of 109. She was Ireland’s second oldest person.

Bridget Dirrane was the oldest native of Ireland’s Aran Islands and the second oldest person in Ireland. Éamon de Valera was the Irish political leader she most admired, but in a life touching three centuries, she met Pádraig Pearse, went on hunger strike in Mountjoy gaol, campaigned for John F Kennedy in Boston, and was […]

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#OTD in 1970 – Death of Irish Nationalist, Sorcha MacMahon, in Dublin.

It was said of Sorcha by her contemporaries that there was no ‘woman of that period whose efficiency, selflessness and enthusiasm was greater’. Born Sarah Teresa MacMahon at Coas, Co Monaghan. Born in 1888, she was called after her mother; as well as using her given name, she also used the Irish form, Sorcha. Her […]

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#OTD in 1887 – Birth of trade unionist and revolutionary, Winifred Carney, in Bangor, Co Down.

Close to the entrance of Milltown Cemetery is a limestone monument which marks the grave of a remarkable woman – Maria Winifred Carney. Winnie was born in Bangor, Co Down, but moved to the Falls Road in Belfast at an early age. She was born into a fairly comfortable family, and was one of seven […]

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#OTD in 1919 – Birth of Máire Drumm in Newry, Co Down.

‘The only people worthy of freedom are those who are prepared to go out and fight for it every day, and die if necessary.’ –Máire Drumm Máire Drumm was the vice president of Sinn Féin and a commander in Cumann na mBan. She was killed by Ulster loyalists while recovering from an eye operation in […]

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#OTD in 1943 – Death of suffragist, trade unionist and Irish independence activist, Winifred Carney, in Belfast.

Close to the entrance of Milltown Cemetery is a limestone monument which marks the grave of a remarkable woman – Maria Winifred Carney. Winnie was born in Bangor, Co Down, but moved to the Falls Road in Belfast at an early age. She was born into a fairly comfortable family, and was one of seven […]

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#OTD in 1871 – Margaret Dobbs, Irish historian, language activist and defender of Roger Casement, is born in Dublin.

‘Ireland is a closed book to those who do not know her language. No one can know Ireland properly until one knows the language. Her treasures are hidden as a book unopened. Open the book and learn to love your language’. –Margaret Dobbs Dobbs’ father was Justice of the Peace for Co Antrim, High Sheriff […]

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