Saturday, March 6, 2010
12 January 1885 – 25 September 1917
Leader of the North County Dublin Volunteers in the Rising), Sentenced to Death; Sentence commuted to Penal servitude for life.
Born in Kerry, Ashe was an active member of both the Irish Volunteers and the Gaelic League. During the rising, he led his command in an engagement with the RIC (Royal Irish Constabulary) Ashbourne in County Dublin, capturing four barracks and large quantities of arms and ammunition. After the surrender he was sentenced to death, but this was commuted and he was released from
jail in 1917.
Later that same year he was arrested again, this time for making 'speeches calculated to cause disaffection' and was sentenced to one year hard labour at Mountjoy Prison. He demanded, along with other Republicans in the jail, to be treated as a prisoner of war. When these demands were refused, the prisoners went on hunger strike. Thomas Ashe died 25 September, 1917, as a result of incorrectly administered forcible feeding. 30,000 people marched in his funeral procession, led by Irish Volunteers in uniform.