#OTD in 1888 – Birth of Irish nationalist, Sorcha MacMahon, in Co Monaghan.

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 1957 – Death of nurse and member of Cumann na mBan, Elizabeth O’Farrell. Best known for delivering the surrender in the Easter Rising of 1916.

Elizabeth O’Farrell was born in Dublin in November 1884. In 1906 she joined Inghinidhe na hÉireann and along with her lifelong friend Julia Grenan she also joined Cumann na mBan, the women’s branch of the Irish Volunteers. As plans were put in place for the Easter Rising of April 1916, Elizabeth and Julia were sent […]

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#OTD in 1916 – Easter Rising leaders: Pádraig Pearse, Thomas Clarke and Thomas MacDonagh were executed by a firing squad in Kilmainham Gaol.

The first of the 1916 rebels were shot dead in the Stonebreakers’ Yard at Kilmainham Gaol after being found guilty (without legal defence or jury) of taking part ‘in an armed rebellion for the purposes of assisting the enemy.’ The fact that they were involved in armed rebellion is beyond doubt, but the primary purpose […]

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#OTD in 1916 – Easter Rising: The Surrender.

After six days that reduced much of central Dublin to ruin, British forces numbering close to 20,000 troops (many of them Irish) finally force a rebel force of 1,500 men and women to surrender. At 12.45pm, Elizabeth O’Farrell (one of the last three women left in the GPO before it was evacuated), left 15 Moore […]

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#OTD in 1916 – Easter Rising, Day 5, British Reaction Escalates.

In the early morning hours, General Sir John Grenfell Maxwell finally arrived in Dublin as commander-in-chief of the forces in Ireland. He issued a proclamation: “The most vigorous measures will be taken by me to stop the loss of life and damage to property which certain misguided persons are causing in their armed resistance to […]

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#OTD in 1916 – Easter Rising Dublin – Day 4.

It is the fourth day of the Easter Rising and the remaining rebels are under constant attack. The GPO and Four Courts are being blitzed with machine gun and rifle fire, and large parts of Sackville Street (O’Connell Street) are up in flames. As British authorities come to terms with the situation in Dublin, fierce street […]

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#OTD in 1916 – Easter Rebellion: British Troops move into Dublin.

One day after the Proclamation of the Irish Republic is read by Pádraig Pearse on Easter Monday and a day of limited activity, British authorities start to take action. By the end of the day, 7,000 troops will be moved into Dublin from Belfast and the Curragh. Those British forces stationed in Ireland that were […]

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#OTD in 1976 – Tens of thousands defied a ban on commemorating the heroes of Easter 1916 at the GPO in Dublin.

In 1976, the 60th anniversary of the Rising, the southern state and the republican paramilitaries – particularly the Provisional IRA were in frank confrontation. The Irish government banned that year’s proposed Easter parade by republicans under the Offences Against the State Act – its anti-terrorist legislation. Just ten years after the state’s own bombastic commemoration […]

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#OTD in 1916 – 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 to withdraw from 26 counties just six years later. Timeline: At noon, Pádraig Pearse reads the […]

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