TODAY IN IRISH HISTORY: April 23rd, 1916 (Easter Sunday)
Printing of the Irish Proclamation.
Approximately 1,000 copies of The Proclamation of the Irish Republic are secretly printed in Liberty Hall in a basement print office set up by James Connolly.
The proclamation will be read by Pádraig Pearse outside the General Post Office on Monday April 24th. All seven signatories of the Proclamation Pearse, James Connolly, Thomas Clarke, Thomas MacDonagh, Sean MacDermott, Joseph Plunkett and Eamonn Ceannt would be executed by British authorities.
Today (Easter Sunday) was a day of confusion and indecision amongst the rebel movement. The Irish Volunteers Chief of Staff, Eoin MacNeil cancels the schedualed manoeveres of volunteers in defiance of Pádraig Pearse. McNeil’s cancellation occurred partly because he had only just become aware of the true nature of the planned manoeveres and also due to the capture of Roger Casement and the major arms shipment aboard the Aud off the coast of Kerry.
At noon on Easter Sunday, Pearse and the Military Council decided to postpone the insurrection until the follow day, Easter Monday April 24th. Despite a long and bleak history of failed insurrections due to leaks and informers to British authorities, it appears that for once the Irish rebels were able to keep their plans secret.
ATTACHED: An original copy of the 1916 Proclamation donated to the National Museum in Dublin by the family of Mr. Joseph McCrossan. It was picked up on O'Connell Street ninety years ago by his grandmother Mary McCrossan.
John McCrossan said his grandmother had risked her life to get the document: "She folded it up, put it in her hat and it's been in the family ever since.
It is estimated that only 20 of the 1000 original copies remain today.