Margaret was the older sister of Patrick and William Pearse. After Patrick had been sentenced to death he requested to see his mother and sister. Dublin city was still a war zone. With sniping and gun fire all around they could not make their way to Kilmainham Gaol.
Unable to say goodbye to his mother in person, Pearse wrote her a letter from his cell in the early hours of 3 May. Margaret recalls that he mentioned all of those who were dear to him and referred to his older sister by her pet name ‘Wow Wow’. As she says
The boys never called me Maggie.
Although he knew that he would most certainly die for his part in the Rising, Patrick believed that his younger brother William would no doubt be imprisoned but would survive. That was not to be the case.
Patrick Pearse was executed by firing squad in Kilmainham Gaol on 3 May 1916. The next day, at the very same spot in the Stonebreakers’ Yard, Kilmainham Gaol, William Pearse was also executed.
Margaret Pearse was a teacher and helped her brother in the running of St Enda’s School. She was a founding member of Fianna Fáil and was elected to Dáil Éireann and was later appointed to Seanad Éireann (Senate). She was a founding member of Ardscoil Éanna, Crumlin. Senator Margaret Pearse died in 1968, she was eighty years old.
Margaret Pearse was interviewed for the television series 'On Behalf of the Provisional Government', broadcast on 12 April 1966.