1916 Rising: Photographs taken for British show aftermath

Dazed soldier emerging from ruins among pictures taken by TW Murphy in new book

A set of photographs of Dublin in the aftermath of the Easter Rising which were commissioned by the British military governor, General Sir John Maxwell, have been included in a new book.

They were taken by TW Murphy, a photographer employed by Maxwell photographic company to take shots of the devastation of Dublin after the rebellion.

They include one of a dazed and dishevelled British soldier emerging from the ruins of the Coliseum Theatre on Henry Street four days after the Rising ended. Two soldiers had been taken prisoner by the rebels and held in the GPO during Easter Week.

After they were released, they took shelter in the ruins of the theatre and were not discovered until May 3rd. They had no idea the rebellion was over and neither man had eaten for four days.



The photograph taken by Murphy shows one of the soldiers being helped through the streets by a police constable.

Murphy was a regular contributor to the Irish Motor News, a small circulation periodical aimed at Ireland's tiny motoring community.

He offered the photographs to the magazine along with a typed copy of James Connolly’s final dispatch to the garrisons. The pictures and text were published.

There are photographs in the collection of the destruction of Dublin and of Gen Maxwell inspecting the ambulance corps.

Sisters of Charity

There is also a picture of an armoured motor wagon that was built in eight hours in one of Dublin’s engineering yards to deal with the rebellion.

Photographs were also taken of the Sisters of Charity feeding the poor of Dublin after the Rising.

The photographs are included in a new book, Easter Rising 1916, edited by Dr Leanne Blaney who specialises in transport in the early part of the 20th century.

The book is part of the 1916 TW Murphy Collection published by Willow Design & Publishing based in Cootehall, Co Roscommon.

Dr Blaney said the photographs are effectively new because they would not have been seen by many people at the time they were released.

“There is a more human element to these pictures. They show people moving around and trying to reassemble their lives,” she said.

Easter Rising 1916 will be available from next week through Eason and www.willowireland.com.

Ronan McGreevy

Ronan McGreevy

Ronan McGreevy is a news reporter with The Irish Times