Spring Lecture Series 2015
Glasnevin Trust & Trinity College Dublin
'Becoming revolutionary: The year before 1916'
Maeve Casserly (NLI)
'Rosie Hackett: Bridging the divide - trade unionist, nationalist and women's rights activist'
Rosie Hackett was an active trade unionist, nationalist and women worker right's activist. In the years leading up to the Dublin Lockout and the Easter Rising she was involved in trade unionism and was a member of the Irish Women's Workers Union, in which Big Jim Larkin's sister, Delia Larkin was the general secretary. She was among the 303 women who on 1 Sept 1913 joined 670 of their male colleagues went on strike in Jacob's biscuit factory on Bishop Street. Hackett never returned to her job in Jacobs and instead secured work in the Women Worker's Co-operative started by Delia Larkin in the Irish Transport and General Worker's Union in Liberty Hall. Along with the other co-operative members (who number 8 to 10 in 1915-1916), Hackett also joined the Irish Citizen Army (ICA), therein participating in route marches and taking lesson in first aid from Dr. Kathleen Lynn. As part of her instruction Hackett assisted Lynn in the treatment of minor cases in Lynn's regular Liberty Hall clinic.
In the early months of 1916, Hackett and her fellow workers assisted in the intensive preparations for the Easter Rising that were conducted from Liberty Hall. From her post in the shop, Hackett was James Connolly's receptionist when other members of the IRB military council arrived for meetings.
During East Week, Hackett was assigned to the first-aid unit of the ICA's Stephen's Green garrison under the supervision of Madeleine Ffrench-Mullen. On the garrison's surrender (Sunday 30th April) she was marched through a hostile crowd to Dublin Castle, before her transfer to Kilmainham Gaol, where she was held for 10 days.
Hackett participated in post-rising reorganisation of the separatist and trade-unionist movement. She was presented with a gold medal by the ITGWU in 1970 in recognition of her long service and commitment. In September 2013, during the centenary of the lockout, the new light-rail bridge in Dublin linking Marlborough Street and Hawkins Street, and close to Liberty Hall, was named after Rosie Hackett. Opened in May 2014, it is the first of the twenty-one Liffey bridges within the city to be named for a woman.
Who were the Irish revolutionaries and how did they become involved in a cycle of events that would culminate in the rebellion of 1916? What were they doing in 1915? This series of lectures digs deeper than the rebel leaders, interrogating the lives of some of the not-so-famous revolutionaries, their thoughts, their hopes.
Maeve Casserly is the current recipient of the Research Studentship at the National Library of Ireland (2014-2015).
She graduated with an Honours BA in History and Political Science in 2012 and an M.Phil in Public History and Cultural Heritage from Trinity College Dublin in 2014. Her Masters dissertation was a comparative study of commemorative events undertaken to mark the centenary outbreak of WWI in the ROI. She will present her findings at the Annual Irish Memory Studies Network Conference in Radbound University, in the Netherlands in April. Maeve has worked on editorial, archival, and commemorative projects with Document in Foreign Policy, the Royal Irish Academy; the Historic Properties Department of the OPW; the Irish Manuscripts Commission; the Royal Society of Antiquarians of Ireland; and Glasnevin Trust.
Her work has been published in the Dictionary of Irish Biography (RIA), The History and Humanities Journal(TCD) and the Trinity Literary Review (TCD). She regularly contributes articles and book reviews to the popular History blogs The Irish Story and Four Nations.
Thursday 12th March at 7pm, Glasnevin Cemetery Museum.
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