I always heard a story in my family that a prominated business family in the area established its fortune by funding gained from the looting of gold in the GPO in 1916. 3 brothers took part. Is this Hogwash or was gold stored in the GPO? And did much looting occur in the Uprising?
I am not sure if the GPO was or wasn't looted, but I recently heard that much of the damage done to O'Connell street opposite the GPO & further down towards Parnell St was as a direct result of looting & burning, and not the gunboat Helga, as myth once said . . . .
The looters robbed & burned their way down O'Connell St in the aftermath of the Rising, some say that many of the looters were actually rebels, some say it was not the rebels, but just some less well off folk taking advanyage of the mayhem & destruction, I am not sure who did the looting.
PS My Grandad was a postman in Dublin at the time.
Would you have an online link to this information (in bold) ? Is it contained in books (if so which ones) or is it anecdotal ?
Yes fires spread and destroyed buildings but I am not sure that it was the looters who were setting the fires, I would have thought it was a result of the bombardment & the rebels were not bombarding.
I have never heard of Rebels looting. I have heard of them confiscating materials for the effort, such as food at Jacobs etc. In my view that is undeniably a completely seperate category to the criminal looting of jewellery shops etc. The 'stolen gold bars at the gpo' is a new one on me and sounds prettyfar fetched.
Looters tearing down whole buildings? Leaving streets in piles of rubble? That really is a new myth - they must have been the size of King Kong!
Superb book, lots of libraries in Dublin have it.
The Rebels were laughed at and told the Tommies would be along soon to box the heads off them. You can just imagine that sentence in a Moore St accent
And gives stories of what was stolen and how it was hidden among houses and the police raids the weeks afterwards trying to recover property
There was huge looting going on in Dublin, a lot along Talbot St area.
Some good reading here
And you know the same would happen today with the Love Ulster. When the police withdraw, the inner city low lifes and scum emerge.
As I understand a Rebel commander initially had an order that looters would be shot but never followed through and didn't give the order.
Usually fire follows looting hence buildings falling down so you don't need KingKong. Some accounts of general looting in dublin
Dear, dirty Dublin: a city in distress, 1899-1916 By Joseph V. O'Brien
Mary Louisa Hamilton Norway The Sinn Fein Rebellion as I saw it
Spontaneous combustion does not occur so easily - and looting does not automatically spawn fire. Also back then the non combustible nature of so much building materials - as opposed to our more plastic age - would have made setting fire a much more deliberate enterprise. The looters are described mostly as women and children. I would need much more evidence that they had deliberately set fire to buildings.
In the "Burn baby burn" of the civil rights movement in the US setting fire was a careful and purposely laid plan.
Were looters shot ???
Here is an interesting link
I have always wondered about the numbers of civilian casualties and the circumstances of their deaths.
i have to say i never read anything about gold bars in the GPO or looters setting fires in shops or indeed the rebels looting. many myths stories and hearsay did the rounds after the Rising in many famlies in Dublin , some true and others not .
The looters took goods away only, the fires were mainly started by the British artillery etc hitting the buildings and igniting fires as one of the effects of an explosion is to cause intense heat.
James Stephens the writer wrote that "small boys were killed"
I believe their were some shots fired over the looters by the Rebels as they became apprehensive that the whole Rising might look like an organised looting spree instead of a proper Rebellion.
There's the basis of a great dynasty type TV drama in that rumour.
Um, right. Speaking of TV . . . does anyone know of any plans to release TG4's 'Seachtain na cásca' on dvd boxset ?
It does say :
Another opportunity to see the award winning series, which examines the lives of the 7 signatories of the 1916 Easter Proclamation. The full series will be screened over Easter. DVD box set also availavle on www.tg4.ie/siopa
however only the book is on the sales site.
The producers were on boards last Novemeber when it was being screened
Just sent them a quick email, will report back if I get a reply
It's a boxset that would sell well, makes sense to release it