Medals at County Louth museum inspire 2016 Easter Rising centenary exhibit
Blackrock resident’s research uncovers one man’s major contribution to 1916
Kevin Kavanagh (85) only found out in recent years that his father, Seamus who died in 1969, was recruited by Countess Constance Markievicz in his teens and was a runner in 1916 for her. He also walked routes singing ‘The Soldiers Song’, the Irish national anthem, with its writer Peadar Kearney, assessed Michael Collins army position when he arrived in Dublin in early 1916, avoided execution following the Rising and was the Officer Commanding of the battalion which included Kevin Barry.
Kavanagh, along with County Museum Curator, Brian Walsh, is now encouraging everyone to look in their attic or under the stairs to see if they have any relics of 1916 as the museum starts planning a substantial exhibition in the run-up to and including the centenary of the Easter Rising in 2016.
Kevin decided to put a record of his father’s life together after he received a laptop for his 80th birthday: “We had always known our father was in the army but he rarely spoke about it nor did we know the depth to which he was involved. It was only when we contacted the army barracks for records that all this information came to light.
“We did know he was in the army. There were a number of items in the house which indicated that, including a gun. But it was only a few years ago that we started to piece everything together.
“Apparently, in his early teenage years, Countess Markievicz approached him in a draper’s shop in which he was working. She asked him to change his name from James to Seamus and invited him to come along to a group meeting. This was the beginning of the Fianna Eireann boy scouts movement. One of the other boys was Peadar Kearney and as they would walk routes around Dublin they would sing a song Kearney was writing – The Soldiers Song..”
In the run up to the Easter Rising, records state that Michael Collins, on arrival in Dublin was annoyed when he was placed as a recruit in 2nd Battalion D Company, of which Kevin’s father had command, until he was told regardless of his previous experience he would have to go through the recruits section before it was decided where he should be placed. That decision would be Seamus Kavanagh’s.
In 1916 he joined Countess Markievicz at St Stephens Green and became her personal ‘runner’.
After the Rising had been put down, combatants were arrested and detained. At some point the captives were divided into two lines. Seamus left his line to talk to another man. When spotted he was then ordered by a British soldier to remain in the other line. He, along with the other men in that line were sent to Frongach in Wales. The other line of people who he had originally been with, included a number of the Rising leadership and all were executed.
- An open letter in strong defence of capitalism.
- Sarah Palin is saving Christmas
- Racist incidents in Ireland up by 85 percent...
- Gay teacher fired from Catholic school after...
- Virginia governor slammed by doctor over...
- Irish drugs mule to escape full trial and...
- Nelson Mandela was against IRA decommissioning.
- Top Christmas Irish ads that will be bring...
- Irish radio presenter suspended after anti-Isra
- Hollywood star Gabriel Byrne brands new Pope...
Of course it was terrible what happened to these girls.. so sad. We all rant & rave about it now but that was the norm in those far off days. It'sRichard Haass sticking to 'year end' deal on flags, parading and the past
How about changing the red , white and blue American flag) to green, black & red ? how would the yanks like it ?Unionists regret US envoy Haass’ call for new flag for Northern Ireland (VIDEO)
Dano you do not live in Ireland any sibling of an Irish person (or grandparent can apply for a passport). You do not live in Ireland.Gay teacher fired from Catholic school after applying for same-sex marriage license
Crusades came back in 2001 and now being waged by Secular Christians from USA and EU......The original Crusades were fought by European Catholics.