With the first in a planned series of short articles in the run-up to the Centenary on April 24th, the Thomas Clarke Society Dungannon tell how the date of the Rising came to be agreed at Clontarf Town Hall (pictured).
On the 16th January 1916, the Supreme Council met at Clontarf Town Hall to set the date for the Rising. It was agreed it would be mounted on April 23rd, choosing that date as a nod to history, it being the April 23rd in 1014 that Brian Boru defeated the Danes at the battle of Clontarf.
On or about February 9th 1916, Thomas Clarke sent a coded message to John Devoy via a trusted courier, Tommy O’Connor, a steward on one of the Liners operating between Liverpool and New York.
It stated the Rising would begin on Easter Sunday and asked that he contact the Germans, to land the arms at Limerick between April 20th and 23rd. The German admiralty staff replied they could land 20,000 rifles and 10 machine guns, with ammunition and explosives, by trawler at Feint in Tralee Bay, Co Kerry.