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The Irish standard. [volume] (Minneapolis, Minn. ;) 1886-1920, April 19, 1919, Image 1

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Vol. XIV. No. 20
By Thomas F. Nolan
(From the pen of an eye witness)
Just three years ago, the blood of
Irishmen the world over was put a
tingling by the news of an' Insurrec
tion in Dublin. Many were the com
ments then—favorable and otherwise
We were too near the eve.nt' to judge
It properly. Today we are in a much
better position, we can look back
through the perspective of the last
three years, and in a clearer light and
cooler spirit view (he doings of that
eventful week. For many the Insur
rection was a bolt from the blue, a
complete surprise, but it was this for
those only who were not in touch with
the new Ireland. For those who knew
the pulse and temper of the New Ire
land the Insurrection was no surprise
—it was forced by the logic of events
This is not the place to enter into
a complete analysis of the causes of
the outbreak the causes were many
.f:and complex. Briefly we will reduce
~y them to two: remote and proximate.
The remote cause is written on every
page of seven hundred years of bloody
history and is well known by every
son of the Gael. The proximate cause
was England's show and hypocrisy in
regard to the Homo Rule bill which
was on the statute book. The leaders
of the new movement saw clearly that
John E. Redmond was .fooled in re
ga«l to that bill, they saw that the
yAung nfen beguiled by him into the
English army, in thousands, were dy
ing in vain, in the dykes of Flanders
and on the beaches of Gallipoli, as far
as Ireland was concerned—in a word
they saw the break down of the con
stitutional theory. I am not overlook
tag or underestimating the influence',
"^of /the literary movement. It was. to
this literary qiovement that the lead
ers owed their clear vision, their sage
judgment, their all but prophetic out
look. Personally I think that the
Gaelic League had a large share in
the insurrection. Don't misunder
stand mq^-I will explain. The Gaelic
League interested itself in an Irish
literary revival in the study of the
language and history of Ireland. Here
the youth of our generation read the
glowing accounts of the past, of pure
early saintly Ireland, and then they
longed for "the days that were they
longed to know off the shackles of a
merciless tyrant and breathe once
more the free air of liberty, and taste
once more the sweet portion of free
dom. Then too, they read the lesson
of history.
It la a fundamental principle that
from the same causes the same effects
will follow1—granted that all the cir
cumstances are the same, the results
will be the same. Now the circum
stances .were the same as on so many
other occasions in Ireland's history,
and the results would be the same if
the methods adopted were the same.
They got tired, of a well-tried constitu
tional policy, they got tired of the
"wait and see" of Mr. Asquith, of the
"wait till after the war" of Lloyd
George and they decided to make a
dash for liberty confiding in the strong
arm and stout heart of the "Irish Vol
Before speaking of the insurrection
proper, something must be said of the
"Irish Volunteer," and how he came
into existence. We must go back a
few years previous to the insurrection.
Carson and his covenanters swore a
mighty oath that they would resist
Home Rule to the death. To make
good'their oath they prepared to de
velop a volunteer force. The "Fan
ny" sailed gloriously into the North
of Ireland, laden with German rifles,
direct from the Krupp factory
Strange, she evaded the ever-watchful
British Navy on the high seas! An
other strange thing these rifles were
distributed in Belfast without any in
terference from the authorities! They
even marched in solemn procession,
with the air of men who had achieved
something, and all went well. They
drilled and organized, and later when
the pwage of the Home Rule bill was
Imminent they threatened rebellion.
soldiers at the Curragh Camp Kil
dare, were ordered against them. Gen
eral French, Gough, and several offi
cers refused to obey! What was the
result? General French was
commander-in-chief of the British
troops upon the western front, and not
succeeding in that position was made
Lieutenant of Ireland,
which Ugh
post he is holding at present', a soldier
who didn't know how to obey! And,
Carson, the rebel was given a seat iir
the English cabinet!
Young Dublin looked on in wonder.
Naturally it said: "What Carson is
able to do to prevent Home Rifle, we
can do to force it through." And as a
consequence the Irish Volunteers were
founded by Erin MacNeill. An Irish
man: is a born soldier, and in a very
short space the organization had as
sumed proportions that began to worry
England. The gun-running at Howth,
which ended in the murder of innocent
Dublin citizens by the military, gave
a new impetus to the volunteer move
ment. Strange again, in the North
the authorities convinced at the gun
running in Dublin, they ordered1 out
the military! Enough to make the
blood rise in any lover of fair play.
Whilst this organization of the Irisfy
Volunteers is perfecting itself, there
are other movements afoot in Erin.
The Irish Workers organized by Jim
Larkin saw the' need of armed force
and they too secured rifles and am
munition. Then we have the Sinn
Fein element, which has given a name
to the whole movement. Sinn Fein
means "we ourselves" and their policy
was essentially a passive one, a policy
of let aloneness.
Meanwhile the entire Europe was
plunged into war. The. Home Rule bill
was on the statute book and Ireland
generously waited. More than that,
her brave noble youth flocked in thous
ands and tens of thousands to the
standard of liberty—even though it
wait helping their greatest enemy. The
call of the oppressed was never heard
in vain by Erin, t&e wail of Belgium,
faithful Catnolid sfster of Erin was
heard and answered. The piercing
cry of France, ever the friend of Ire
land, was heard and answered. Eng
land said over and over- again that
she was fighting for the freedom of
small Nationalities, and the majority
in Ireland believed her! For two years
we believed her! But, the better edu
cated, the leaders of the hew move
ments did not believe her. Events
were happening under their very eyes
some of which I ^iave referred to al
ready, which showed them plainly that
England was playing the hypocrite,
which showed them that "tho' she
should wear a thousand masks she is
still Albion." Through two weary
years of war they watched the trend
of events, patiently waiting for Eng
land to make good her promises. She
failed, as might have been expected,
and the elements mentioned already
united in a common effort to force her,
and we have what is slipping into his
tory as the "Insurrection of Easter
Week 1916."
Easter Monday 1916, Dublin is lead
ing her normal life the buzz of busi
ness is not heard for it is a back holi
day in the old city by the.Liffey. The
street cars are filled with holiday,
makers automobiles are taking pleas
ure seekers to the race meets and sea
resorts where in one'joyous afternoon
they forget the worry and toil of life.
In fact everything speaks of happincfss
and joy in peace-loving Dublin. Around
born companies of Sinn Feiners are
seen coming from headquarters all
are armed and fully equipped as if for
a day's march. This is not very un
usual, they have' been taking these
marches quite frequently of late. Peo
ple stop and look at them, admire their
physique, their light-hearted air, .and
manly swing, and then pass on. Sev
eral companies come along and then
I was in O'Connell street, and
watched the maneuvres of these com
panies with keen interest. After some
time, all the companies but one had
disappeared from O'Connell streec.
Tills one led -by Sergeant O'Connolly
marched ufc the center of the' street
and wheeled at the general postofBce
O'Connolly entered at the head of his
men and thundered forth, "we take
charge of the postoflice in the name
of the Irish Republic." In a short
time all was in their hands—the mili
tary on duty surrendered, seeing that
resistance was useless but few shots
were fired. I realized then that this
was no rehearsal and that these gar
fellows ipeant business. Reports and
news spread' like wildfire. The other
companies had taken all the points of
vantage around the city, and In half
an hour the flag of the Irish Kepub-
j,' LAMr»%iaL'
Tuesday morning people rose early,
all expectant. Nothing had occurred
during the night the Sinn Feiners
were allowed the peaceful possession
of their own city and all was going
well. They had worked hard during
the night, and they looked it never
theless there was an air of proud con
fidence, almost defiance, in the bearing
of these young soldiers of Erin—they
were worthy of the noble cause. Busi
ness was of course, at a standstill, and
the average Dubliner settled down to
$7^ »w
Minneapolis, Minn., Saturday, April 19, 1919
lie—the green, white and gold—was
courting the breezes of heaven from
(he highest turrets of the highest gov
ernment buildings in Dublin. The
proclamation of the Irish Republic was
posted up all over the city and we
breathed the free air of liberty whil'e
it lasted. Things were done in a
very business like fashion communi
cation with England was cut off, rail
way terminals seized, food stored up
and all preparations made for the ever
expected attack. Where were the
British military authorities all this
time? Enjoying themselves at the
horse races outside the city, whilst
others were fighting for them in
Flanders! They were caught napping.
The Sinn Feiners worked hard all
Monday evening, blowing up bridges,
wrecking the railroad lines, throwing
up barricades in a word -making
strong their position. There is an
ironical touch about all this, the bit
ter irony of fate, after all, is not? this
their own city of Dublin? Why dp
they have to prepare thus to hold itt,
•itf flHSre some-highway rtbber
to take from them whkt IS their own
by every right under heaven? Towards
evening they were well entrenched be
hind their barricades and their Cor
don, drawn completely around the city
and supported by sharpshooters at'
vantage points, looked like a stern re
sistance and once completed, no one
was allowed to pass through without
a passport from the Irish Republic.
Latfe in the evening the British mili
tary authorities, returning from their
day's sport, were much chagrined to
be prevented from reaching their com
fortable rooms in a luxurious hotel. It
was amusing to see them being or
dered to turn their own automobiles
upside down to help to strengthen the
barricades. The poor fellows had to
seek quarters for the night outside the
city! And where would they receive
a welcome? This was Erin's first day
of the new Republic. We retired to
rest, not knowing what the morrow
would bring.
Messrs. Baxter, McPartlin, Gleason, McGrath, McLaughlin,
Welch, Leonard, et al, offered the following resolution:
Whereas, it is the sense of the people of Americk that the inhab
itants of, Ireland should, under the principle of the self-determina
tion of small nations, be free to assume among the nations of the
earth the equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature's
God entitled them and that their efforts for freedom and independ
ence be recognized and their hopes in this direction realized
Therefore, Be It Resolved, that the House of Representatives of
the State of MinnesQta, does hereby proclaim its sympathy in the
aspirations of Iceland, and does hereby call tipon those in authority
in this nation, representative of this government at the Peace Con
ference, to use every effort to bring about the freedom of Ireland
and its recognition as a nation among the nations of the earth and
that it hp given full power and authority to accomplish its long
cherisheo. idesire to become a republic, modeled upon that of its
friend aiia constant refuge for its persecuted people, the United
States of America.
Be ItVFurtherv Resolved, That copies of this resolution be for
warded byffte Chief Clerk to the President of the United States
and to the members in Congress from this state.
Mr. Baxter moved the adoption of the resolution.^
if' Which motion prevailed.
^v:- 't'i
enjoy his enforced hoftbay. From the
time that' the Sinn Feiners took the
city a policeman could not be seen.
The wily authorities took him off thfc
streets only to put him on duty again
in civilian garb. In this way the au
thorities received some information.
People spoke more freely when the
embodiment of the law was not to b»
seen. One heard strange things dur
ing these early days. The consensu
of opinion seemed to be that the out
break was foolish and would end in a
failure. Such remarks as these might
be heard: "What' can these fellows do
if the authorities just leave them
alone—they will get tired waiting, an
starve." "These fellows will cool oif
when they feel the pinch of hunger."
But the British authorities evidently
thought differently they didn't give
them time to starve.
Very soon England began to realize
that there was something amiss in
the sister isle. No communication of
any kind during twenty-four hours'
What can be the matter? Surely we
are not being stabbed in the back!
A gun boat in the Liffey on Tuesday
evening told us that England had not
forgotten us the expected was near
at hand. The Sinn Feiners had been
unable to take charge of the Kings
bridge Railway terminal—tHey had not
a sufficiency of men.. They trusted to
IrelancPs Freedom
their comrades in Naas, a town six
teen miles down the line, to blow up
the road there, so as to prevent the
possibility of troops getting into the
The Sinn Feiners at Naas were over
powered by the military and police—
they failed and the city lay open on
this side. Dublin at this time, had an
army of occupation of about twelve
thousand men. On Tuesday evening
they were ordered out. A regiment
of Lancers were first sent out to re
connoi(er, but Sinn Fein bullets could
see further than they, and they were
forced to retire. At about 5 p. m. on
Tuesday evening the general advance
on the city was commenced. I watched,
this advance along the north Bide of
the city I will describe what I saw
there. The mode of attack was simi
lar at other points. The soldiers ad
vanced, armed to the teeth, in com
panies of about one hundred and fifty,
there were four companies of this kind
to take the bridge that was held by
j^feput fifteen stout hearted $inu!'Feln
erir.' between the flrpt' and se«cmd'
company, came artillery, heavy can
non, and wagon loads of ainrfvunition.
The artillerymen opened heavy fire on
the barricade and. the first company
rushed, up. The English soldiers
seemed to think that the Sinn Feiners
would not stay behind tjiat barricade,
but they did, and opened lire on the
advancing company. Men fell the
Red Cross ambulance was busy, and
we realized, for the first time, that
we were in the inidst of open war.
After desperate fighting the bridge
was taken, and the young soldiere of
Erin fell back on their second de
fense, disputing every inch of the
ground sharp-shooters from the
houses on either side made the ad
vance of the English hazardous and
expensive. Similar attacks were made
at the different points of entrance to
the city some of these were carried,
but always with heavy loss others re
mained in the hands of the insurgents.
"All day long the noise of battle
rolled" and the zip zip of rifle and the
cackle of machine gun counted the
weary moments through the live long
night. We were nq( yet accustomed
to war—we could not sleep.
In the daily rifle practice and man
euvers of the militatry I had been
hearing these same sounds, but they
never affected me as now. Lying
awake on that first night of battle
these sounds had a new significance.
I realized then, with a sort of creepy
feeling, that they were sounding the
death knell of the brave. And yet
there was a feeling of exultation,—
Ireland was proving true to her his
tory her sons were dying in the sa
cred cause of liberty.
Wednesday morning there was a
lull in the fighting, or elBe we were
growing accustomed to war. The im
provident were beginning to feel the
effects of two days' vacation. One
might see respectable old gentlemen
smile all over when they had secured
a loaf of bread. Why, in those days,
men carried milk jugs who had never
before carried anything but a walking
stick. The pantry supply was running
low and things lookpd serious. It is
remarkable how we can become
friendly when in distress. Men who
moved in different circles of society
spoke to each other as brothers, the
first bashfulness once lifted they quick
ly exchanged confidences. The zip zip
of the rifles continued but we did not
seem to heed. Dublin was acting as
if war was its normal lite. Late on
Wednesday there was an important
piece of news: General John Max
well,—oh, ye brave! ye dead!—was ap
pointed commander-in-chief of the
British forces. Troops began to pour
(Continued on Page 8.) (cort
N Sv-/
5c the Copy
Chicago, 111., April .11, 1919.-
Editor, The Irish Standard,- /||I
Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Dear Sir: Please accept my sincere^®
thanks for the many nice complimemh^f|j!
you paid me in an editorial appeariug||S'
in your great paper a couple of weeks^|'
ago. I trust 1 have' deserved them.:|||||
I am sure of one thing at least and
that is, I have tried to do my duty by
my kin in Ireland, I have defended.).^?
them from the charges made against'
them by British propagandist's in the A*®
columns of an American subsidized
press during a time when to do so
meant that one was open to the charge.'*^
of treason toward America.
Your own great paper was a valu-
able aid during that trying time and
no doubt at a great pecuniary loss for1
the stand you took on the
tlon must have lost you considerable
advertising and all that, still you nev
er faltered. I trust that Irish America
will prove grateful to you for the great
service you have rendered Ireland,^
and, that this grSflTHfHf will take tho$|S
form of a large increase in the circula-^¥f,
tion department.
Hibernian Progress in Minnesota.
I have followed with pride the pro
gress which the Ancient Order ot Hi-„
bernians and its Indies' Auxflfary^O
have made, and are now making in the'$|
great state of Minnesota. Nj&n the La-I^"
dies' Auxiliary department',
which 1 am
God will continue to bless their efforts
in the future bb He has In the past.
was tjte je**IWvt w^rk. of V
undfev the inspiring lead^rslitp
of that great and patriotic organizer,
Mrs. Mary B. Daley, the state presf-,
dent, for the two years ending July
1918, and they have now started an
other campaign for membership. I
am sure when they could make such
a wonderful gain in membership dur
ing the war, and at a time when the
Irish question was anything but popu
lar, what will they not do now when
there is such a revival of the Irish spir- vi 1,
it all over the land. Through the.
columns of your great paper I wish to
thank Mrs. Daley, the state president, S
the energetic county presidents like
Mrs. Bryant, Mrs. Murphy, and Mrs. /,
Conroy, the members of the state and -j!
county boards/ the division president?,
and every member of the Hibernian '||f||
Auxiliary in your great state for the
splendid manner In which they have
cooperated with me for the honor and
"felory of the Hibernian cause, which) y/'
Is also the cause of Ireland. I hope
I am sure, yourself and the mem
bers of the A. O. H. and L. A. In Min
nesota will be glad to know that pros
pects were never brighter for the two Mm
orders than they are at present. I
have Just returned from an extended j?f"
trip through the East and it was my
pleasure to speak In crowded halls and ^j||
theatres on an average of four nights #|4||
a week. It has been recognized that i|§||
the old Ancient Order was the society
that stood iir the breach in the past
for Ireland's cause and hence it is the
society.that will live in the future.,
The Irish History Crusade,
The Iribh History Crusade carried 'Mp
on by the two societies for the past
ten years is now recognized as the
one thing above all others that saved
the Irish race in America from almost
total oblivion, and certainly the small
amount of money which the A. O. H.
and the L. A. have spent on this move 1
ment, is the very best investment they
have made. I
During my three years as National
President of the L. A. in visiting HI
bernlan centers all over the country,
It has been my first care to visit the
schools and academies for the purpose
of speaking on the subject of IrU(r|
history to the advanced pupils, and'
during the hearing of the Gallagher
bill in -the House of Represent
last December, I had the pleasure ofM
addressing the students of
college on the invitation of Slsterlto^)
ence Louise the secretary of the
lege, who asked me to tell the st
the reason why conscrlption was r»-|
slsted last year in Ireland. I wtth Mfe*
Editor yon could havo been with
(Continued tin Page J,)

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