herald

Wednesday 7 December 2016

'I'd never seen our tricolour flying like that before'

Voices from The Rising

At 12.20pm on Easter Monday 1916 the rebels marched into the GPO on Sackville (now O'Connell) Street. Twenty-five minutes later Padraig Pearse read the Proclamation of the Irish Republic outside the building. The witness statements below are from the Bureau of Military History.

Shortly after our arrival the tricolour was hoisted on the flagstaff at the left-hand corner facing Prince's Street. Commandant Pearse read aloud to the public on the street the Proclamation of the Irish Republic and copies of the Proclamation were posted on the walls and pillars of the building
- Frank Burke, GPO

We took copies of them and helped to post them up in various parts of the city. We were naturally very excited over the events that were taking place
- Jeremiah O'Leary, GPO

People were standing around...there was not much excitement...I remember the flag interested me because I had never seen our tricolour flying like that before
- Min Ryan, Cumann na mBan, GPO

a poor scared DMP [Dublin Metropolitan Police] man in uniform hurriedly passed us, muttering 'Good lads' to us as he went by, perhaps more for self-protection than out of sympathy. We did not molest him in any way
- Charles Suarin, GPO

I recall an incident that took place the first time, I think, that I left the Post Office to go to Sherrard Street...I saw Connolly and Pearse together in the street just as the tricolour was being hoisted on the GPO. As Connolly shook hands with Pearse, I heard him say, 'Thank God, Pearse, we…have lived to see this day!'
- Michael Cremen, GPO

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