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Sunday 4 December 2016

Mulvihill came from London to GPO with brother-in-law

Rebel stories

Michael Mulvihill
Michael Mulvihill

Michael Mulvihill was born at Ardoughter, Ballyduff, Co Kerry in 1879.

After school he set out for London, securing a clerical appointment in the civil service there.

On the formation of the Irish Volunteers, Michael joined the London corps. Among his friends were his brother-in-law, Austin Kennan from Dublin, and Michael Collins.

Shortly before Easter 1916 Michael was called for military service in the British Army. He rejected the call, rendering him liable for arrest on sight anywhere in Britain or Ireland.

Accompanied by Austin Kennan, he sailed for Dublin on Good Friday 1916. The two men had a meeting at Kimmage Camp, but there was no definite news of the Rising.

On Easter Monday Kennan and Michael Mulvihill were walking along O'Connell Street when the Volunteers wheeled into the GPO.

Michael and his brother-in-law joined the GPO garrison. Armed with shotguns and home-made bombs, for use in repelling the expected bayonet charges, they were posted to the front centre section on the roof with the Rathfarnham Company on their right.

The two remained together, under continuous fire, until Thursday of Easter Week when the intensified bombardment made the roof no longer tenable and they were assigned to the ground floor.

On the following day the two friends lost contact with one another in the confusion of the evacuation from the GPO. Kennan was led by The O'Rahilly into Moore Street and survived.

He did not see Michael alive again.

After the surrender the body of Michael Mulvihill was seen lying in Moore Lane near the junction with Henry Place. He was buried in Glasnevin Cemetery with soldiers of the Irish Citizen Army and other Volunteers who were killed in action.

Details submitted by Michael Brendan Mulvihill (grandnephew)

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