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“On Tuesday Night We Started Transmitting”

Volunteer Fergus O’Kelly was in charge of a party of Volunteers who took over the Wireless School above Reis’s Jewellers. He and his men had orders to get the wireless apparatus working to transmit messages from the Headquarters Battalion in the GPO. On arrival they found the aerial had been dismantled and the equipment disconnected, it had not been in use since the outbreak of the war in 1914.

While erecting the aerial they came under fire from British soldiers in Trinity College and the Tivoli Theatre on the south side of the Liffey. With the work complete they began transmitting messages on Tuesday.

By Wednesday O’Kelly’s position came under heavy attack from the gunboat Helga and they were forced to retreat to the GPO on Thursday.

Fergus O’Kelly was a member of the Signalling Company, 2nd Battalion, Dublin Brigade, Irish Volunteers.

Fergus O'Kelly was interviewed for the RTÉ Television project 'Portraits 1916' on 12 December 1965.


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