“We Walked Down To The Post Office On Tuesday”

Although Phyllis Ryan was not a member of Cumann na mBan, she did take part in the Easter Rising serving alongside her older siblings Jim and Min Ryan in the General Post Office.

Phyllis had come to Dublin with Min, a member of Cumann na mBan, from their family home in Wexford. On Tuesday 25 April having met their brother Jim, a member of the Irish Volunteers, all three made their way to the General Post Office.

Immediately the girls were set to work in the kitchens which Phyllis recalls was very demanding work.

I spent the whole night cutting up bread and making sandwiches… getting very tired. I had boys coming down from the roof to be fed.

On Wednesday Phyllis and Min were sent by Seán MacDiarmada to deliver messages around the city. Once finished they found they were unable to get back into the GPO and had to spend the night elsewhere.

Phyllis Ryan joined the Ranelagh Branch, Cumann na mBan in 1917 and was later appointed Captain of the branch.


Phyllis Ryan (later Phyllis Bean Ui Ceallaigh) was interviewed for the programme 'Women of the Revolution' broadcast on RTÉ Radio, 12 April 1971. Photograph of Phyllis Bean Ui Ceallaigh courtesy of Military Archives.

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