Irish Republic

The Irish Republic flag, flown over the General Post Office in Dublin during the Easter Rising in Ireland, 1916. It was made by Mary Shannon at the headquarters of the Irish Citizen Army in Liberty Hall. Captured by the British troops after the surrender of the rebels, it was returned to Ireland by the British Government in 1966. It is now on display in the National Museum of Ireland in Dublin. Arnold Platon Wikimedia Commons

Cumann na mBan, Kinvara

Roll of Honour

The First Shot

F. J. Johnston

R. J. Johnston


Kinvara – July 1916

Seamount searched

These Irish Women

An Irish Rebel Girl


Letter from Kinvara – 1916

G.P.O. 1916

Ireland – 1916


Kinvara Company – 1916

John (Jack) Burke, Cahermore.
Paddy Burke, The Square, Kinvara
Patrick Burke, (Coisín), Loughcurra
Peter Burke, Cahermore
John Callinan, Loughcurra
John Connolly Gortaboy
James (Séamus) Davenport, The Quay, Kinvara
John Fahy, Caherawoneen
P.J. Fahy, Kinvara
John Glynn, Neptune Vale, Doorus
Pat Hanbury, Dunguaire
John Hanbury, Dunguaire,
David Hanlon, Loughcurra
Michael Hanlon, Crushoa
Mary Higgins, Ardrahan
Martin Hynes, The Glebe, Kinvara
Michael Hynes, (Mikie) Dunguaire
Michael Keane, Ballyclera
John Kilkelly (Sean Wally), Crushoa
Michael Kilkelly, Doorus
Michael Kilkelly (Mickela) Tawnagh and Doorus Demesne
Padraig Kilkelly, Tawnagh and Doorus Demesne
Joseph Kilkelly, Tawnagh and Doorus Demesne
Tommie Kilkelly (Mhicil), Crushoa
Stephen Leech, Loughcurra
Edward McCormack, Kinvara
Thomas McInerney (Tom), Cahermore
James Picker (Jim), Cahernamadra and Kinvara West
Patrick Quinn, Tawnagh
William Quinn, Caherawoneen
John J. Reidy, Tawnagh and Doorus Demesne
Thomas Reidy (Tommie) Tawnagh and Doorus Demesne
Michael Stanton (Mick), Cloonasee
James Whelan (Jim), Mountscribe and later Tawnagh
John Whelan, (Sean/Jack), Doorus


Cumann na mBan – Kinvara
The local people were most loyal to the I.R.A. and I could not find words to do justice to their loyalty and hospitality right through the struggle. Nor can I find words adequate to give an idea of the devotion and loyalty of Cumann na mBan. They did wonderful work as scouts and dispatch riders and were very successful as Intelligence officers. They brought clean clothes to volunteers on the run. I would say that their most difficult assignment was to have to remain in their own homes and there, along with their parents, meet the marked midnight raiders who came to threaten and bully and burn out their houses. (extract from statement of Michael Hynes, Dungora, Kinvara, Co. Galway – Member of Kinvara Company Irish Volunteers
Bureau of Military History 1913 – 1921 Document no. W.S. 1,173; File No. S. 2339; p.14

Cumann na mBan brooch

Cumann na mBan – Kinvara Branch

Miss Kate Fogarty
Mary Hynes, Dungora, Kinvara
Miss Aggie Staunton, Clooas, (sic.) Kinvara
Miss Mary Fogarty, Kinvara
Miss P. Regan, Kinvara
Annie Kilkelly, Kinvara
Katie Hanbury, Kinvara
Annie Higgins

Margaret Johnston, Kinvara


The Roll of Honour, 1916 Sinn Fein Rebellion Handbook and the Frongoch Camp list

The winds of change EO'D

The Roll of Honour, the 1916 Sinn Fein Rebellion Handbook and the Frongoch Camp List identifies men and women who fought in the 1916 rebellion in Dublin and countrywide. The list runs to over 6,000 names and is not exhaustive. It details where men and women were interned/exiled in the aftermath of the rebellion.

Kinvara/Gort/Kilcolgan/Ardrahan/Loughcurra/Doorus/Peterswell volunteers are listed below. Please contact me if you see an error or omission and I will update immediately.

John Glynn Duras, Kinvara Co. Galway, Richmond Barracks to Wandsworth May 8th 1916
John Glynn Kinvara, Co Galway, Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
P Rian Forde, Kilcolgan, Co. Galway Richmond Barracks to Glasgow 19th May, 1916
P Hanbury Dongoran, Kinvara, Co. Galway Richmond Barracks to Wandsworth May 8th 1916
Patrick Hanbury, Kinvara, Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Daniel Kelleher, Gort, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
James Kelleher, Gort, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
John Kelleher, Gort, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Martin Kelleher, Gort, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Daniel Kelleher, Gort, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Martin Kellerker (sp), Gort Richmond Barracks to Perth May 19, 1916
Thomas Kelley, Peterswell, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916

J Callinan, Kinvara, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp, June/July 1916
James Coen, Ballycholin, Gort Richmond Barracks to Perth 19th May, 1916
John Coen, Ardrahan, Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp, June/July 1916
John Coen, Ballymaguire, Ardrahan, Farmaer Richmond Barracks to Lewis, 19th May, 1916
John Coen, Gort, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp, June/July 1916
Martin Coen, Gort, Co Galway Frongock Detention Camp, June/July 1916
Patrick J Fahy, Kinvara, Co. Galway Richmond Barracks to Wandsworth, 8th May 1016
Henlon David Loughcurra, Kinvara Galway Richmond Barracks to Wakefield June 1st 1916
Peter Howley, Peterswell, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
William Howley, Peterswell, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Thomas McInerney Kinvara Co Galway, Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Thomas McInerney, Cashenmoore, Kinvara, Richmond Barracks to Knutsford June 1 1916
Michael O’Conlon Kinvara Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Michael O’Dea, Kilcolgan Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Michael O’Dea Stradbally Kilcolgan, Richmond Barracks to Wandsworth June 1, 1916
Patrick Joseph O’Dea, Kilcolgan Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Thomas O’Dea, Kilcolgan, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Thomas O’Dea Stradbally Kilcolgan, farmer, Richmond Barracks to Knutsford June 15 1916
David O’Hanlon Kinvara Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Michael Silver Rathbairn Ardrahan farmer Richmond Barracks to Knutsford June 6 1916
Patrick Silver Ardrahan Richmond Barracks to Knutsford June 1 1916
John Whelan, Duras Kinvara, Co Galway Richmond Barracks to Wandsworth May 8th 1916
John Whelan Kinvara Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Patrick Burke, Kinvara, Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Patrick Burke, Kinvara, Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Peter Burke, Kinvara, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Thomas Burke, Gort, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Thomas Burke, Lurgin, Gort Richmond Barracks to Perth 19th May 1916
John Bindon, Kilcolgan, Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Thomas Bindon, Kilcolgan, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Michael Cuniffe, Gort, Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Thomas Cuniffe, Gort, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Martin Hynes, Durns, Kinvara Co. Galway farmer Richmond Barracks to Woking 19th May 1916
Martin Hynes Kinvara Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Stephen Leech Kinvara, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Stephen Leech Loughcurra Kinvara Co. Galway Richmond Barracks to Wandsworth 8th May, 1916
T Stephenson Gort Co Galway Richmond Barracks to Glasgow may 19, 1916
Thomas Stephenson Gort Co Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Michael Sylver Ardrahan Co. Galway Frongock Detention Camp June July 1916
Patrick Sylver Ardrahan Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Bryan O’Connor, Gort, Co Galway. Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
John Loughrey Gort Co Galway, Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916

John Kilkelly, Canshow, Kinvara (sp) Richmond Barracks to Knutsford 1st June, 1916
John Kilkelly, Kinvara, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916
Michael Kilkelly, Kinvara Co. Galway Richmond Barracks to Glasgow 19th May, 1916
Michael Kilkelly, Towna, Kinnaird (sp) Richmond Barracks to Wandsworth 8th May 1916
P Kikelly, Kilcolgan, Co. Galway Richmond Barracks to Glasgow 19th May, 1916
Patrick Kilkelly, Kinvara, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp, June/July 1916
T Kilkelly, Kilcolgan, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp, June/July 1916

John Fahey, Lurgin, Gort Richmond Barracks to Perth 19th May 1016
Michael Fahey, Lurgin, Gort Richmond Barracks to Perth 19th May 1916

Thomas Brennan, Kilcolgan, Co. Galway Frongoch Detention Camp June/July 1916

for more information, see http://the1916proclamation.ie/the-roll-honour/g/


Connacht Tribune 27th December 1968 p.17 – part1

1916 – The First Shot


Kinvara c.1950 Cresswell archives

The first shot in County Galway in Easter Week of 1916 was fired in Kinvara. The authority for that statement is Padraic Uas O’Fathaigh of Tullira, Ardrahan, who was one of the officers of the County Galway Board of the Irish Volunteers and a central figure in the events of that week. Mr O’Fathaigh was in Kinvara at the time the first shot was fired and was involved in the incident that led up to it but he does not claim to know for certain to whom the distinction should go – to a Volunteer or to a policeman.

Mr.Fahy begins his story of Easter Week by recalling the arrest and imprisonment of Liam Mellowes in the Autumn of 1915 and his deportation to Reading in April 1916. At that period the Galway County Board of the Irish or Sinn Fein Volunteers, which governed the force, had Mr. George Nichols, Galway, as chairman; Joseph Howley, Oranmore, treasurer; and Padraic O’Fathaigh, Lurgan, Gort, secretary, with Larry Lardner, Athenry, as Brigade Commander. Meetings were held at Athenry and Mellowes had his training camp at Ballycahalan. Mr. O’Fathaigh continues his story;
A Convention was held in Limerick, at which plans were made for the Easter Sunday Rising. The delegates from Galway were Commandant Larry Gardner, Rev. Fr. Feeney, C.C., Treasa Bhreathnach, Eamonn O’Corbain and Padraig O’Fathaigh. Mr. Ledden presided at the meeting and it was arranged that the expected arms from Germany would be taken to Abbeyfeale and there sorted, some to be kept, and the remainder taken by rail to Gort to arm the Volunteers who would muster there on Easter Monday. Handbills about the Gort Monster Meeting were displayed at the Limerick Hall. “Con” Fogarty would take the arms to Gort. Commandant Colivet would take charge of the Limerick Brigade of the Irish Volunteers at Limerick city. The Clare Battalion, led by Commandant Michael Brennan, would take any Clare barrack they might surprise, but would make no delay in moving to augment the Limerick Volunteers. The Companies of the Galway Brigade would attack the R.I.C. barracks in their area on Easter Sunday.



Kinvara c1950 Cresswell archives

Commandant Larry Lardner was in command, Commandant Liam Mellowes having been deported to England. The wily Commandant Mellowes, however, succeeded in evading arrest and turned up at Mrs. Walshe’s house in Killeeneen some days before the intended Rising. Liam Mellowes ordered that his escape should be kept a secret known only to the Walshe family, Eamonn Corbett and myself. Liam’s uniform, enclosed in a parcel addressed to Mrs. Walshe, was expected to come via Athenry and its safe delivery was important.
Since 1909 I taught Gaelic every Wednesday and Thursday night in Athenry and my visit to Athenry on Wednesday elicited no surprise. Eamonn Corbett was mixed up in rate collecting and travelled extensively. We got the parcel safely; George Fahy at the Railway Hotel and Berty Powell at the Railway Station would have scented out any danger. We took the parcel with all speed to Killeeneen; I thus missed the Irish class for the first time in seven years.
Having attended a Volunteer meeting earlier in the evening, John Coen, Ardrahan; Peter Howley, Peterswell, and I went to Fr. Feeney’s house at Clarenbridge where the Easter Sunday parades were discussed. Comdt. Larry Lardner was very despondent and could not see what he could do with a practically unarmed mob. Fr. Feeney praised Comdt. Lardner for his commonsense. Neither knew about Comdt. Mellowes’ escape.

At a meeting in Galway later in the week it was known that Mellowes would take command and it was decided to go on with the mobilizations on Easter Sunday. Comdt. Mellowes asked me to get a man to take Derrybrien Company (Diar-thigh mBriain) to Mountshannon. I chose a carpenter, Tom Lynskey, for the task. He also wanted a man to cut the wires between Galway and Limerick. Patrick Neilan, Betha and “Lahy” Shaughnessy were assigned to this job. Things began to look bright again and everything went on without the slightest suspicion. Liam Mellowes had the companies honeycombed with I.R.B. men who saw to it that everyone kept his mouth shut. I went with Fr. O’Meehan, C.C., Kinvara when he took the Kinvara Captain, Jack Burke, to Galway where he got a supply of provisions, chiefly bacon and tinned food, for Kinvara Company in anticipation of the Easter Sunday Rising.
After first Mass at Kilbeacanty Church on Easter Sunday, Frank Brew, a Clare dispatch rider, came to me with a dispatch, saying that the Rising was cancelled as far as Limerick was concerned. He undertook to see Patrick Neilan to restrain him from cutting the communications.

The Gort Batallion of the Irish Volunteers mustered, provisioned and armed at Ballylee. The R.I.C. barracks in the area were to be attacked, beginning with Peterswell. The Volunteers had Scout Commandant, Pat Callan, and partaken of food when the Craughwell arrived with Eoghan MacNeill’s countermanding order. When Dan Kelligher asked why were we stopped, the scout said that the Rising was adjourned. The Volunteers were then dismissed.
I cycled that night to Killeeneen and inquired of Liam Mellowes why did MacNeill call off the parades. He said that MacNeill thought it better to defer the Rising to another date. Scout Callan also called to the Clarenbridge Company with the countermanding order. Another blunder also vexed the Commandant; someone cancelled the Gort meeting without the authority of Mellowes. It was felt that this cancellation would encourage the enemy whilst confusing the Volunteers.

Although the Volunteers knew that Gort meeting was cancelled and stayed away, the general public was not aware of this. They flocked in hundreds to Gort despite the drenching rain. Fear of conscription had now gripped them and they preferred to die at their doorsteps than out in France. On my way to Irish Class at Killeeneen on Monday evening, I met a Sergeant Walshe and a constable on the road below Ardrahan. They were not the Ardrahan R.I.C. They eyed me sharply but did not hold me up. In the vicinity of Killeeneen I met Fr. Feeney. He stopped and told me that Dublin was out and that we ourselves were going out on Tuesday morning. He was in great form. Clarenbridge and Killeeneen Companies mustered and with them, men whom I had not seen with the Volunteers previously, including old Michael Fleming and Johnny Corcoran, and Connemara men who came to Kilcolgan with turf.

I was trying to dry my clothes in front of a blazing fire in the old school of Killeeneen when Commandant Mellowes, who had been making cannister bombs with the assistance of Johnny Corcoran, asked me with two or three others to come aside to make arrangements, but seeing my wet clothing he excused me. Later he called me aside and handed me a dispatch, saying that I was to go to Ballycahalan to mobilize and arm the Gort Battalion, the Companies to remain in their own areas in order to check enemy forces in the district. He gave me the rank of lieutenant. I borrowed an old overcoat and had a bicycle ready when I said; “There will be no trouble in mobilizing the Companies. It is the food supplies that worry me. Will I go by Kinvara and bring Father O’Meehan with me to regulate the food supply?”



Kinvara c.1950 Photo: Cresswell archives

He was silent for some time. Then he beckoned to Mick Kelly of Coldwood, and gave him the dispatch and bicycle, saying; “You go to Ballycahalan with this dispatch,” then turning to me he said “You will go to Kinvara and bring back Fr. O’Meehan here to me; I am sending Tom O’Dea with you.” Sonny Grady of Athenry appeared with a car and as Tom O’Dea and I sat in, Sonny Morrissey of Athenry rushed up in great excitement, asking how was he to get to Athenry as he wanted to be with his own Company. He sat in with the driver on the road to Kinvara. Passing Kilcolgan Barracks, Tom O’Dea asked me would he fire shots at the barrack. I dissuaded him from this. Passing through Kinvara, O’Dea said, “There is some move on by the R.I.C. The transport car is here.”
Arriving near Fr. O’Meehan’s house, the car drew up and Tom O’Dea and myself knocked at the door. The housekeeper, Mrs McNally, informed us that Fr. O’Meehan was not at home, that he received a warning that his house was to be raided and he stayed away.
We were greatly nonplussed, and remained at the door hoping that he might have left some clue to his whereabouts. Two R.I.C. men approached the door and seeing us they seemed bewildered. O’Dea whispered, “Will we shoot them?” I dissuaded him. Sergeant Reilly of Kinvara and Constable McCarthy, Kilbeacanty, then went away, but we stayed on. Dawn was breaking when the R.I.C. came back again, and again O’Dea asked would we shoot. I again restrained him.

The R.I.C. again retreated but they separated; McCarthy with rifle in hand remained a good way off whilst Sergeant Reilly approached O’Dea. The Sergeant asked O’Dea his name and purpose. O’Dea gave his name as John Donoghue of Dooras, and that we were on a sick call. He then went to the car, some distance away. Then the Sergeant put similar questions to me and I also gave fictitious answers. Sonny Grady beckoned me to come to the car. As I went the Sergeant followed me. He asked O’Dea to come out of the car and as he did so, he asked me to come out also. As Constable McCarthy approached he was ordered to arrest O’Dea. The Constable did so; and the Sergeant also caught O’Dea. McCarthy then shouted, “Whoever stirs a foot, I’ll shoot him dead.”
I grappled with the Sergeant. The R.I.C. men then said if I let the Sergeant go they would release the prisoner, but when I let him go, they twisted O’Dea’s hands. I then tried to take the Sergeant’s rifle, which he held on to with one hand, whilst the other hand held O’Dea. Sergeant Reilly then let go of O’Dea and grappled with me. I found him very strong but not so agile. After wrestling for some time he began to tire and he shouted to McCarthy to come to his assistance.

McCarthy let O’Dea go and after getting four or five blows of the stock of the rifle I managed to grab the rifle. I then struggled with both, the Sergeant panting for breath. Seeing O’Dea at the car I shouted to him for help, as he came running McCarthy made a desperate effort to get loose from me and succeeded, as O’Dea was within 10 yards of me.
When McCarthy pointed the rifle on him, O’Dea turned and ran to the car which was ready and, as it moved on, I saw O’Dea put out his head and hand. McCarthy fired, putting a bullet hole through the hood of the car.
Constable McCarthy then put the barrel of the rifle to my back, saying he’d give me ten seconds to let go of the Sergeant. I released him at the count of nine but McCarthy counted up to twelve.
It was some time before Sergeant Reilly recovered. He then went to twist my hands, but stopped when I said I’d give more trouble if he tried that game on me.
Arriving at Kinvara barracks I was divested of coat and overcoat and consigned to “the black hole” where a very cross terrier was in possession. Sergeant later entered with the coat and overcoat, saying that it was as well to be civil.

F. J. Johnston

My grandfather, Frederick J. Johnston (spelled as Johnson in the Bureau of Military Records) ran a shop on Main Street, Kinvara.  He supported the Volunteers, providing arms, ammunition, food and clothing.  He was visited a number of times by  the R.I.C. in the aftermath of the Rising.  During one interrogation the R.I.C put the barrel of a shotgun into his mouth. He was told that he would be shot in front of his family unless he provided the names of those involved in the Rising.  His wife and children were forced to watch.  Frederick refused to provide the R.I.C. with information.

Michael Hynes and Thomas Reidy refer Frederick in their statements;

“We marched into the town of Kinvara and collected all the shotguns in the town. Most of the owners gave them up willingly and Mr. Johnson, a hardware merchant, gave us all the guns and ammunition he had in his shop about half a dozen guns. In all, we collected from 20 to 30 shotguns and a good share of ammunition. (Statement by Michael Hynes, Dunguaire, Kinvara from the Bureau of Military History 1913 to 1921 Page 2)”

Frederick J. Johnson, a hardware merchant in Kinvara, gave us all the guns he had in the shop (five or six) with a big supply of cartridges. Be died quite recently. Mr. Johnson was visited by the R.I.C. shortly after. They wanted to know, the names of the Volunteers in the town who took the arms. In spite of threats of shooting, he gave no information to them. In all we collected 20 to 25 shotguns in the town. (Statement by Thomas Reidy, Towna, Kinvara from the Bureau of Military History 1913 to 1921 Page 4).




Richard J. Johnston

My father blinded himself in one eye when he was six. He was sitting on the crooked tiles of the kitchen floor trying to open his shoelace with a dinner fork.

My grandmother took my father by train to the eye surgeon in Dublin. It was Easter week 1916, the rebels had taken the city center, the GPO was in flames, and the city in an uproar. They spent the night stranded on the railway tracks outside the city. He lost his right eye, and the delay almost caused him to lose the left as well. I learned this for the first time two nights before he died in nineteen seventy-eight, of cancer, in a hospital bed in Galway where I was a medical student. I never heard the rest of the story: how he got through the burning war zone to the hospital, what happened along the way. There were no buses running, or hackneys. At that moment in the history of Dublin, every effort of the citizenry was being spent in furthering the rebellion, quelling it, looting, or surviving. But he made it, and came home to a different Ireland. For the rest of his life he kept a glass eye in a jar beside his bed every night, and always slept with the light on.

Deirdre Johnston.


The articles below are included to demonstrate how the Rising was perceived by media.

The Rising – as outlined by The Daily Gate City and constitution – Democrat April 25th, 1916
By J.W.T. Mason, Written for the United Press
New York – April 25, p.1

There can no longer be any doubt but that a grave situation of rebellion now exists in Ireland.The frustration of Sir Roger Casement’s efforts at gun running, has been only partly successful and it is practically certain that his expedition landed munitions on the Irish coast before the British naval forces intervene. More disquieting than Casement’s exploit, for the British government, is the fact that a well organized movement was ready in Ireland to make instant use of the arms imported from Germany. The “grave riots” announced in the house of commons this afternoon, are undoubtedly the work of pro-German agitators in Ireland whose propaganda the Dublin castle authorities have been unable to put down.
For many months there have been indications that a irreconcilable part of Ireland’s population has been preparing for a seditious uprising. The difficult of getting proper war equipment has been very great, owing to the stringent regulations of the British government. The Casement expedition provided for the first time sufficient munitions to influence the Irish leaders into ordering an uprising.
It is highly probable that the Germans ordered today’s naval raid on the British coast for the purpose of encouraging the Irish and throwing the British government into added confusion. How sweeping may become the Irish rebellion depends largely on the quantity of munitions that Sir Roger Casement was able to get ashore. The British government’s announcement that Casement’s operations covered two days and that only one vessel was employed, suggests only a limited amount of material was landed. When this is expended, it is difficult to determine where other important supplies can be obtained unless the troops quartered in Ireland mutiny. The most advantageous consequence of the Irish uprising for Germany will probably be the permanent detention with Great Britain of large bodies of troops that otherwise would be sent to the France-Belgium front.

London, April 25
Sir Roger Casement, whose capture off the Irish coast spoiled a reckless attempt to foment disorder in Ireland, probably will escape execution, it was said today. Officials are said to be convinced that Sir Roger has been mentally unbalanced for the last three years. Despite his traitorous conduct, after long years in the service of his country, he probably will be confined in some institution and closely guarded for the remainder of his life.
No incident in several weeks has so stirred the English public as the brief announcement of the once brilliant Irishman’s capture. The morning newspapers gave the most prominent display to the admiralty announcement and speculated briefly upon the identity of the German auxiliary sunk by British patrols while trying to land Sir Roger and a strong force of sailors.
The capture of Sir Roger and his German accomplices is expected to have a wholesome effect upon the situation in certain parts of Ireland where sedition has been openly preached by the so-called Irish Volunteers. The government expects to prove that German money is at the bottom of many of these disturbances and that Sir Roger Casement has directed the activities of some of the Irish since he turned traitor and fled to Germany.

Reports were received here early today of attempts to wreck a crowded excursion train southwest of Dublin. Railway employees who attempted to remove a telegraph pole that had been placed across the track were fired on from ambush. A train carrying a squad of police to the scene was derailed.


The Topeka State Journal 28th April, 1916 p.6 (abridged)
General Sir John Maxwell, hero of the Egyptian war of 1882, arrived in Ireland today and assumed immediate command of the troops which will suppress the rebellion.

Both the press and public admit today that the Irish rebellion confronts England with the gravest crisis since the war began. (The fact that the British censor passed this expression is indicative of the seriousness of the Irish situation.)

The public has no knowledge as to the extent to which the revolt has spread, beyond Premier Asquith’s statement mentioning certain counties in particular. It has been reported from time to time, however, that the counties of Meath and Louth, north of Dublin, as well as the western counties of Clare, Tipperary and Limerick were centers of Sinn Fein activities.
A limited passenger service to Ireland was restored today but the rigid censorship on all dispatches from Irish cities continues. Wild rumors are in circulation regarding the progress of the street fighting in Dublin, where the rebels at last reports held the post office and other buildings, but nothing definite is known here.

Sackville street after Rising

SACKVILLE STREET (O’Connell street) after the Rising Photo: The People’s War Book and Pictorial Atlas of the World. USA & Canada, 1920, p. 132.)

London April 25
Grave riots broke out in Ireland yesterday, Augustine Birrell, chief secretary for Ireland, announced in the house of commons this afternoon. The rioters seized the Dublin post office.

Soldiers arriving from Curragh, quelled the rioters after a street battle, in which twelve persons were killed. The situation is now under control of the authorities, Birrell announced. The outburst of rioting, it is considered certain, was part of a well organized German attempt to stir up a great revolution in Ireland. The attempt of Sir Roger Casement and a Strong force of German sailors to land on the Irish coast, undoubtedly was part of this scheme. It is believed here, that the Germans, using Sir Roger Casement as a tool, carefully planned in advance, a revolution, counting upon Sir Roger’s dramatic appearance at the head of a German force to sweep the country.
For several weeks some Irish newspapers have been appearing carrying seditious articles opposing any participation in the war on the part of Irishmen. The organization, known as the Irish Volunteers, has held parades as counter demonstrations to the efforts of English recruiting agents and despite the strong stand for the government taken by John Redmond and other Irish party leaders.
The situation has been growing more serious in the last few weeks and a number of papers which became particularly violent in their agitation against recruiting were suppressed.
It has been know to the government that this propaganda was carried on with the encouragement of German agents, if not with the aid of German money.
The capture of Sir Roger Casement and his band of Germans off the coast of Ireland, gave the authorities concrete evidence of the part Germany is playing in the attempts to stir up revolt in Ireland. Sir Roger, it was learned today, has been brought to London and is now in custody of the military authorities, waiting trial.

Irish rebels are in possession of four or five parts of the city of Dublin, after twenty-fourhours of most serious rioting, Augustine Birrell, chief secretary for Ireland announced in the house of commons this afternoon. Telegraphic communication with Dublin has been cut off, indicating that the principal portion of the city is held by the rebels. Rioting broke out afresh after soldiers arriving from Curragh put down the first rebellion. Birrell first announced to commons that the riots had been quelled and that the soldiers had recaptured the Dublin post office, which was taken by the rebels in the first outburst yesterday. Twelve persons were killed in the first fight, but because of the interruption of telegraphic communication, the government has no estimate on the total number of casualties.
The Dublin general post office which was seized by the rioters in the first attack, is an imposing stone structure situated on Sackville street, a wide boulevard. It is admirably built to serve as a fortress if properly manned by guns.  Birrell announced that arrests have been made, but said he was unable at this time to give any names.
Dublin, the capital of Ireland, has a population of about 500,000 and is situated near the entrance to Dublin bay, on the Irish sea, sixty-six miles west of Holy Head and 133 miles west of Liverpool. If British troops are embarked for Ireland to put down what now appears to be a very serious rebellion, they probably will board transports at Liverpool. It is possible that one of the reasons why larger British forces have not been dispatched to the western front in France, was the fear of an outbreak in Ireland.
Dublin is a modern city with broad, well paved streets and a number of imposing buildings, among them the general post office mentioned in today’s dispatches from London. Phoenix Park, at the western end of the city, is one of the finest parks in the world and contains a military hospital, zoological garden and the resident of the vice regent. The city is flanked north and south by the royal and grand canals and is surrounded by a circular highway. The river Liffey passes through the town and is crossed by numerous bridges. The university of Dublin, the museum of natural history, the Royal university of Ireland, the Catholic university, the National Art gallery and the new Science and Arts museum are among the institutions pointed out to visitors.

The city is also the sea of a Roman Catholic and an Anglican archbishop.
Dublin has been held by the English since it was conquered from the Danes in the ninth century. The city is the birthplace of Swift, Steele, Sheridan, Thomas Moore and the duke of Wellington.


Kinvara – July 1916


Kinvara c.1950 Photo: Cresswell archives

The Connacht Tribune, 1st July, 1916 (abridged)
Every man, woman and child in Kinvara parish and district, and most people throughout County Galway and the West, know that Kinvara Church and Convent have been searched by armed police. A great many well-informed people are aware that the revered Parish Priest, the Rev. T. Burke, P.P. has made a strong protest to General Sir John Maxwell, the military governor of Ireland. The whole subject is talked of far and wide, and the story suffers nothing in the telling. But the new censorship that is exercised today in Ireland, as if a war were actually proceeding within our shores, and the country had got out of hand, decrees that “no correspondence between General Sir John Maxwell and Father Thomas Burke, P.P., Kinvara, is to be published.” So with the shadow of blood on the Irish horizon, and feeling and passion inflamed, we are back again to the old coercionist regime. We cannot help asking ourselves, is this possible in the 20th century, or have the military governors of this country, clothed in the “petty brief authority” that a fateful chance has given them, taken leave of their senses? If those governors imagine that by suppressing in Ireland the plain, if painful truth, they are serving any good purpose in constitutional or military government, they are making a colossal mistake.

The affair at Kinvara has been grossly mishandled from the beginning, and the characteristically Prussian attitude of the new censorship in Ireland does not improve, but considerably aggravates a painful situation. Surely the military governors of this country ought to be able to defend their own attitude, and the attitude of their subordinates, without resorting to the equivocal expedient of a clumsy endeavour to conceal from the public all the facts. Even viewed from their own standpoint, the attitude of the censor in this respect is extremely stupid. It makes a mystery where non existed, and renders the people suspicious of an authority that resorts to methods that are given so sinister an aspect. We publish elsewhere the protest made at the conference of priests held at Gort on the 6th of this month. Surely a body of clergymen are entitled to a full, frank and public explanation and apology from the Government for a proceeding that tends to bring the authority exercises in this country into contempt.


The Catholic Press Thursday 31st August, 1916 (NSW: 1895-1942)
Seamount searched

A gentleman’ in a high official position, who recently returned from a visit to tho old world, called on .the ‘Catholic Press’, to tell us that the condition of Ireland is beyond description. Soldiers are every where. It was the first time he saw a country under martial law, and he does not want another experience. The distress in Dublin, he says, is appalling;
The ‘Irish- Rosary’ for July bears out this statement, ‘and adds:
In several quarters victimisation ot wage-earners suspected of sympathising- with or of having had relatives in the recent upheaval is being brutally practised. Persons arrested on suspicion, in these days of wholesale arrest on the flimsiest pretext, are also subject to the same prosecution on release. It takes the form, I need hardly say, of exclusion from employment. Certain proprietors and firms are giving free rein to their insane and wicked partisanship, the aim being apparently to starve fellow-citizens.
The ‘Irish Weekly and Ulster Examiner’ for July 8 presents another aspect of the case in this resolution:
We, the priests of the Diocese of Kilmacduagb, have heard with amazement of an outrage perpetrated against the Convent of Mercy and community. Kinvara, on Sunday, June 4, by the police, who said they came to search the convent for rebels. We enter our solemn protest against their search of the convent, and we say that the search, and the manner in which that search was made, was a gross outrage on religion and an un called-for indignity and insult to the Sisters.
Catholics well know that religious Sisters never harbor strangers or externs in their convent, and that the sisters’ cells are privileged, no strangers being allowed to enter them. This immunity was violated by the police, and the manner in which the cells were searched was equally offensive to manliness ,and common decency.


Connacht Tribune 14th April, 1956 p7
The death has taken place at her residence, Main Street, Kinvara of Mrs Margaret Johnston relict of Mr Fred Johnston.
The late Mrs Johnston held pronounced nationalist views and was an officer of Kinvara Cumann na mBan during the 1916 Rising and the War of Independence. She was the proprietress of the Kinvara Cinema and dance hall.


The Catholic Press 13th July, 1916 p.10

These Irish Women

The Central News, London, has received from a lady who acted as a Red Cross nurse the following graphic story of the part played by women in the recent revolt in Dublin.

The Irish rebellion is remarkable for one fact not so far recognised in England, namely the very prominent part taken in it by Irish women and girls.

On Easter Sunday, which was the day appointed for the Irish Volunteer manoeuvres, and for which all the men were mobilised, the women in the movement were also mobilised, and ordered to bring rations for a certain period. It was only at the last moment, and for sufficiently dramatic reasons, that the mobilisation of both men and women was cancelled. These Irish women, who did their work with a cool and reckless courage unsurpassed by any man, were in the firing line from the first to the last day of the rebellion. They were women of all ranks, from titled ladies to shop assistants, and they worked on terms of easy equality, caring nothing, apparently, but for the success of the movement.

Many of the women were snipers and both in the Post Office and in the Imperial Hotel the present writer, who was a Red Cross nurse, saw women on guard with rifles, relieving worn-out Volunteers. Cumann na Mban girls did practically all the dispatch carrying, some of them were killed, but none of them returned unsuccessful. That was a point of honour with them – to succeed or be killed. On one occasion in O’Connell Street, I heard a volunteer captain call for volunteers to take a dispatch to Commandant James Connolly, under heavy machine gun fire. Every man and woman present sprang forward, and he chose a young Dublin woman, a well-known writer, whose relations hold big Crown appointments, and whom I had last seen dancing with an aide-de-camp at a famous Dublin ball.

This girl had taken an extraordinarily daring part in the insurrection. She shook hands now with her commander, and stepped coolly out amid a perfect cross-rain of bullets from Trinity College and from the Rotunda side of O’Connell Street. She reached the Post Office in safety, and I saw Count Plunkett’s son, who was the officer on guard, and who has since been shot, come to the front door of the Post Office and wish her good luck as he shook hands with her before she made her reckless dash to take Connolly’s dispatch back to her own headquarters.

This was only one instance, but typical of a hundred that I saw of the part played by women during the fighting work. They did Red Cross work – I saw them going out under the deadliest fire to bring in wounded volunteers – they cooked, catered, and brought in supplies; they took food to men under fire at barricades; they visited every Volunteer’s home to tell his people of his progress. I never imagined that such an organisation of determined fighting women could exist in the British Isles. These women could throw hand grenades, they understood the use of bombs; in fact they seemed to understand as much of the business of warfare as their men.

Sixty girls were released from Kilmainham Prison a few days ago, but others are still imprisoned and arrests are yet taking place.


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