Dublin City Cathair Bhaile Átha Cliath

Dublin changed forever after Easter Week 1916. Almost 500 people were killed in the city and over 2,000 injured. O’Connell Street and its environs were devastated, its main buildings destroyed by arson and shellfire.

Athraíodh Baile Átha Cliath go deo i ndiaidh sheachtain na Cásca 1916. Maraíodh beagnach 500 duine sa chathair agus gortaíodh breis agus 2,000.

Dublin - The Centre of the Rising

The majority of the dead were civilian, most of them ordinary Dubliners from the north and south inner-city areas. But Dubliners were also killed and wounded fighting on both sides in 1916. Around 1,800 men and women of the Irish Volunteers, Citizens Army and Cumann na mBan took part in the revolt, most of them residents of the city.

Seizing the centre of the historic capital of Ireland was a hugely symbolic move by the republican leadership and they hoped that the city’s people would rally to their cause. But there were also Dubliners in the several British regiments based in the city and among the police force. The Royal Dublin Fusiliers played a prominent role in suppressing the revolt. There were several cases of family members fighting on opposite sides. In the midst of the carnage the Dublin Fire Brigade struggled to deal with the conflagration; doctors and nurses from the city’s hospitals looked after the wounded; clergy of all religions tended to their flocks, and ordinary people struggled to find food and shelter.

A Divided City

Even before the Rising Dublin was deeply divided by class, religion and politics. Two years previously the Lockout had brought industrial conflict to Dublin’s streets and after 1914 the city was wracked by tension because of its involvement in the Great War. Dublin’s large unionist minority were aghast at the Rising, while many members of the nationalist middle-class were also terrified of what had been unleashed.

Some of the poorest citizens took advantage of the chaos in the early stages of the revolt to carry out widespread looting. Some ordinary Dubliners reacted with rage against the rebels, while others quickly expressed sympathy and support. The city’s press was universally hostile, with the three daily newspapers supporting the British authorities efforts to crush the revolt.

The Aftermath

In the aftermath of the rebellion over 2,000 Dubliners were interned. The press soon noted what they called a ‘remarkable feature of the Sinn Fein movement and of this rising was the number of Civil Servants involved in it. Many of them have been killed and others have been arrested.’ Both sitting and former members of Dublin Corporation took part in the Rising, including W.T. Cosgrave and Seán T. O’Kelly of Sinn Féin and Richard O’Carroll and Peadar Macken of Labour. Several employees of the Corporation were also involved. Sean Connolly, a clerk at City Hall, was killed while leading the occupation of that building by the Citizens Army. Eamonn Ceannt, a clerk at the City Treasurers Office and John MacBride, a water bailiff with the Corporation, were both executed for their part in the revolt.

While the political atmosphere in Dublin changed dramatically over the next two years, the impact of the Rising was felt for decades; in the ruins of the city centre, only slowly rebuilt; in the physical and mental scars felt by those who were wounded or lost loved ones; and the political divisions that have simmered ever since.

Dublin Corporation and the Rising

A significant number of people involved in the events of the Easter Rising were employees of Dublin Corporation, either then or at some previous time. Among the more notable were:

Éamonn Ceannt (Edmund Kent)
Eamonn Ceannt joined Dublin Corporation in 1900 and was an accounting clerk in the City Treasurer’s Department. Part of a younger generation of IRB who took power in that organisation after 1910 under Tom Clarke and Sean Mac Diarmada, he became one of the principal planners of the 1916 Rising and was a signatory of the Proclamation. As Commandant of the 4th Battalion Irish Volunteers, he led his men and a contingent of Cumann na mBan in occupying the South Dublin Union (now St. James’ Hospital) during the Rising, which saw some of the fiercest fighting of the week. After the surrender, he was court-martialled and executed by firing-squad on May 8th 1916. His wife Áine Bean Uí Ceannt was later prominent in the struggle for independence.

Major John MacBride
An IRB veteran who became famous because of the exploits of his Irish Brigade fighting the invading British army during the Second Boer War, he later married the Irish campaigner and socialite Maud Gonne. Appointed as Water Bailiff to Dublin Corporation in 1909 with the help of the extensive IRB network within the organisation, he was a member of the Irish Volunteers but unaware of plans for the Rising until on Easter Monday morning he encountered Commandant Thomas McDonagh and his 2nd Battalion marching to seize the Jacobs’ factory. Appointed second-in-command there, after the Rising he was marked for court-martial and execution by the British, which was carried out by firingsquad on 5th May 1916. His rival for Maud Gonne, W.B. Yeats, mentions him in ‘Easter, 1916’.

Harry Nicholls
Harry Nicholls entered Corporation service in 1913 as an engineer. Closely involved in IRB and Volunteer training and gun-running activities, he was one of the IRB men in Dublin Corporation who provided detailed maps and other assistance before the Rising. During Easter Week he was unable to join his own battalion at the South Dublin Union, so instead joined in at St. Stephen’s Green and fought there as officer in charge of an outpost. After the Rising and his release from prison, he was instructed to concentrate on trade union work as part of the independence struggle. Subsequently Nicholls was principal founder and first leader of the Irish Local Government Officials’ Union (ILGOU), which in time became the Local Government part of what is now the IMPACT trade union. Later he was twice President of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland but, controversially, he was never appointed Dublin City Engineer.

Séan Connolly
Part of a Republican family, several of whom also served in Dublin Corporation, Séan Connolly joined the Corporation in 1906 and at the time of the Rising was the clerk in charge of motor tax under the Paving Committee. As a captain in the Irish Citizen Army he led the contingent that seized City Hall and surrounding buildings on Easter Monday after an initial attack on Dublin Castle. He died during the subsequent fighting, after being shot by a British sniper.

Dublin City Council invites Dubliners and visitors alike to engage with the 1916 Rising commemorations programme planned for the city in 2016 as we remember and reflect on this pivotal event in Dublin’s and Ireland’s history.

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Baile Átha Cliath - Croílár an Éirí Amach

Rinneadh léirscrios ar Shráid Uí Chonaill agus ar an cheantar máguaird, na príomhfhoirgnimh scriosta ag an choirloscadh agus an lámhach sliogán. Ba Shibhialtaigh iad bunús na ndaoine a fuair bás, gnáthmhuintir Bhaile Átha Cliath as ceantair lár cathrach taobh ó thuaidh agus ó dheas den Life. Ach lena chois sin, maraíodh agus gortaíodh daoine as Baile Átha Cliath agus iad ag troid ar an dá thaobh in 1916. Timpeall 1,800 fear agus bean de chuid Óglaigh na hÉireann, Arm Cathartha na hÉireann agus Chumann na mBan a ghlac páirt san éirí amach, daoine de bhunadh na cathrach a mbunús.

Ba bheart an-siombalach go deo ag ceannasaithe na bpoblachtach é príomhchathair stairiúil na hÉireann a ghabháil agus bhí súil acu go dtacódh muintir na cathrach lena gcúis. Ach bhí Baile Átha Cliathaigh san iomad reisimintí de chuid na Breataine a bhí lonnaithe sa chathair agus i measc an fhórsa póilíneachta. Bhí ról lárnach ag Fiúsailéirí Ríoga Bhaile Átha Cliath sna hiarrachtaí leis an éirí amach a bhrú faoi chois. Bhí a lán cásanna ann de bhaill teaghlaigh ag troid in éadan a chéile. I lár an tsléachta rinne an Bhriogáid Dóiteáin a ndícheall déileáil leis na tinte; thug dochtúirí agus banaltraí ospidéil na cathrach aire don mhuintir a bhí gortaithe; thug cléir den uile reiligiún aire dá dtréada agus bhí an gnáthdhuine ag streachailt ag iarraidh teacht ar bhia agus ar dhídean.

Cathair Dheighilte

Roimh an Éirí Amach féin, bhí Baile Átha Cliath scoilte go maith ó thaobh aicme, reiligiúin agus polaitíochta de. Dhá bhliain roimhe sin, thug an Frithdhúnadh coimhlint thionsclaíoch go sráideanna Bhaile Átha Cliath agus i ndiaidh 1914 bhí teannas ar fud na cathrach mar gheall ar an Chogadh Mhór. Bhí uafás ar an mhionlach mhór Aontachtach faoin Éirí Amach agus bhí an dú-eagla ar an mheánaicme náisiúnach roimh a raibh ag titim amach.

Thapaigh cuid de na saoránaigh is boichte an deis a tháinig leis an chíor thuathail a bhain leis an chéad chuid den éirí amach le dul i gceann na bradaíochta ar fud na cathrach. Bhí cuid de ghnáthmhuintir Bhaile Átha Cliath ar deargbhuile faoin Éirí Amach agus cuid eile nach raibh aon leisce orthu bá agus tacaíocht a léiriú dó. Bhí preas na cathrach ina choinne agus na trí nuachtán laethúla ag tacú le hiarrachtaí údaráis na Breataine an tÉirí Amach a bhrú faoi chois.

An Iarmhairt

I ndiaidh an Éirí Amach, imtheorannaíodh breis agus 2,000 Baile Átha Cliathach. Níorbh fhada gur chuir an preas sonrú sa ‘gné shuntasach de chuid ghluaiseacht Shinn Féin agus an Éirí Amach seo an líon Státseirbhíseach a bhí páirteach ann. Maraíodh go leor acu agus gabhadh a lán eile.’ Bhí baill reatha agus iarbhaill de chuid Bhardas Bhaile Átha Cliath páirteach san Éirí Amach, lena n-áirítear W.T. Cosgrave agus Seán T. O’Kelly as Sinn Féin agus Richard O’Carroll agus Peadar Macken de chuid Pháirtí an Lucht Oibre. Bhí cuid mhór fostaithe de chuid an Bhardais páirteach fosta. Maraíodh Seán Connolly, cléireach i Halla na Cathrach agus é i gceannas ar fhorghabháil an fhoirgnimh sin ag an Arm Cathartha. Cuireadh chun báis Éamonn Ceannt, cléireach in Oifig Chisteoir na Cathrach, agus John MacBride, báille uisce leis an Bhardas, as an pháirt a bhí acu san Éirí Amach.

Tháinig athrú as cuimse ar an atmaisféar polaitiúil i mBaile Átha Cliath le linn an dá bhliain ina dhiaidh sin agus mhair tionchar an Éirí Amach ar feadh blianta fada; lár na cathrach a bhí scriosta agus nár atógadh go ceann i bhfad; an díobháil fhisiciúil agus mheabhrach a rinneadh orthu siúd a gortaíodh nó a chaill leannán, céile nó ball teaghlaigh; agus na scoilteanna polaitiúla a mhaireann go dtí an lá inniu.

Bardas Bhaile Átha Cliath agus an Téirí Amach

B’fhostaithe de chuid Bhardas Bhaile Átha Cliath, san am sin nó roimhe, líon suntasach daoine a bhí páirteach in imeachtaí Éirí Amach na Cásca. I measc na ndaoine is mó suntas bhí:

Éamonn Ceannt
Fuair Éamonn Ceannt post le Bardas Bhaile Átha Cliath in 1900 agus ba chléireach cuntasaíochta é i Rannóg Chisteoir na Cathrach. Ba chuid de ghlúin óg san IRB é a ghabh cumhacht san eagras sin i ndiaidh 1910 faoi Thomás Ó Cléirigh agus Seán Mac Diarmada. Bhí sé ar phríomhphleánálaithe Éirí Amach 1916 agus ar na daoine a shínigh an Forógra. Mar Cheannfort ar 4ú Cathlán Óglaigh na hÉireann, bhí sé i gceannas ar a chuid fear agus ar mheitheal de chuid Cumann na mBan nuair a fhorghabh siad Aontas Bhaile Átha Cliath Theas (Ospidéal San Séamas anois) le linn an Éirí Amach, mar a raibh cuid den troid is fíochmhaire le linn na seachtaine. I ndiaidh an ghéillte, cuireadh armchúirt air agus cuireadh chun báis trí scuad lámhaigh é ar an 8 Bealtaine 1916. Bhí páirt shuntasach ag a bhean, Áine Bean Uí Cheannt, i dtroid na saoirse ina dhiaidh sin.

An Maor John MacBride
Seanfhondúir de chuid an IRB a thuill clú as eachtraí na Briogáide Éireannaí ag troid le hionróirí Arm na Breataine le linn Dhara Cogadh na mBórach. Ina dhiaidh sin, phós sé an feachtasóir Éireannach agus péiceallán Maud Gonne. Ceapadh é ina Bháille Uisce i mBardas Bhaile Átha Cliath in 1909 le cuidiú ghréasán leitheadach IRB laistigh den eagras. Bhí sé ina bhall d’Óglaigh na hÉireann ach ní raibh pleananna an Éirí Amach ar eolas aige go dtí maidin Luan Cásca nuair a bhuail sé le Ceannfort Tomás Mac Donnchadha agus an 2ú Cathlán ag máirseáil chuig monarcha Jacob chun í a fhorghabháil. Ceapadh é ina leascheannasaí ansiúd, cuireadh armchúirt air agus cuireadh chun báis trí scuad lámhaigh é ar an 5 Bealtaine 1916. Luann W.B. Yeats, a bhí in iomaíocht leis maidir le Maud Gonne, é in ‘Easter, 1916’.

Harry Nicholls
Fuair Harry Nicholls post le Bardas Bhaile Átha Cliath in 1913 mar innealtóir. Bhí dlúthbhaint aige le gníomhaíochtaí traenála agus smuigleáil gunnaí ag an IRB agus na hÓglaigh. Bhí sé ar dhuine de bhaill an IRB i mBaile Átha Cliath a chuir mapaí mionsonraithe agus cúnamh eile ar fáil roimh an Éirí Amach. Le linn sheachtain na Cásca, ní raibh sé in ann bualadh lena chathlán féin ag Aontas Bhaile Cliath Theas agus, ina ionad sin, chuaigh sé chuig Faiche Stiabhna agus throid ansiúd mar oifigeach i gceannas ar urphost. I ndiaidh an Éirí Amach agus é saor ó phríosún, dúradh leis luí isteach ar obair cheardchumainn mar chuid de throid na saoirse. Ina dhiaidh sin, ba é Nicholls príomhbhunaitheoir agus an chéad cheannasaí ar Aontas Oifigigh Rialtais Áitiúil Éireann (ILGOU). Le caitheamh ama rinneadh rannán Rialtais Áitiúil de cheardchumann IMPACT de. Ina dhiaidh sin, bhí sé ina Uachtarán ar Institiúid Innealtóirí Éireann faoi dhó ach, rud ar údar conspóide é, níor ceapadh riamh é mar Innealtóir Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath.

Seán Connolly
Ba de theaghlach Poblachtach Seán Connolly agus d’oibrigh go leor díobh i mBardas Bhaile Átha Cliath. Chuaigh Seán leis an Bhardas in 1906 agus le linn an Éirí Amach ba é an cléireach a bhí i mbun mótarchánach faoin Choiste Pábhála. Mar chaptaen in Arm Cathartha na hÉireann, bhí sé i mbun na meithle a d’fhorghabh Halla na Cathrach agus na foirgnimh máguaird Luan Cásca i ndiaidh ionsaí tosaigh ar Chaisleán Bhaile Átha Cliath. Fuair sé bás le linn na troda ina dhiaidh sin, nuair a scaoil naoscaire Briotanach é.

Tugann Comhairle Cathrach Bhaile Átha Cliath cuireadh do mhuintir Bhaile Átha Cliath bheith rannpháirteach i gclár comórtha Éirí Amach 1916 atá beartaithe don chathair in 2016 agus muid ag cuimhneamh agus ag machnamh ar an eachtra ríthábhachtach seo i stair Bhaile Átha Cliath agus na hÉireann.

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