Living History, — April 5, 2011 23:44 — 0 Comments

In the hands of the enemy

 

After the order for surrender came, we were marched to O’Connell Street and halted between Parnell’s statue and Nelson’s Pillar. Each volunteer laid his arms and ammunition in front of him. We were then eased off from our original positions to make room for further Volunteers.

Special medal for 1916 Volunteers, struck on 50th anniversary: this is Patrick Rankin’s

We were then inspected by an enemy officer who was accompanied by about twelve aides-de-camp. When he came to me, he stopped and discovered at my feet about three or four dum-dum bullets. He called me a dog and several other choice names. I stared at him but never answered for fear he might call me a coward. As we had moved positions, I had walked on to some other man’s position. This officer eventually moved on while his aides were filling their pockets with small arms etc. for souvenirs. I was saying my prayers as never before as he moved away.

At last we were moved into the lawn of the Rotunda Hospital from O’Connell Street and the lawn was soon filled with our companions. We were guarded by English soldiers and a few Dublin Metropolitan Police. 

The office in charge was a brute. He gave many orders to the sentries, such as if a Volunteer stood up or went on his knee, he was to be shot. The office in charge was dressed in khaki and was drunk and mad from its effects. We had to sleep there the whole night but the weather was good.

When morning came there were three or four of my comrades lying on top of me.

 

… more later …

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