1916 Proclamation of Irish Independence, originally owned by Kathleen Lynn.
This is one of three original copies of the Proclamation of Irish Independence, which are in the collections of the National Museum of Ireland. It was originally owned by Dr Kathleen Lynn and on the back are the names of eleven of the women imprisoned in Mountjoy Gaol after the Rising, signed 19th May 1916. It also carries the signatures of the printers Michael J. Molloy, Liam Ó Briain and Christopher Brady.
An estimated 2,500 copies of the Proclamation were printed by the insurgents in Liberty Hall in Dublin on Easter Sunday, 23 April. On the following day Patrick Pearse read the Proclamation outside the General Post Office (GPO) on Sackville Street (today O’Connell Street). Supporters of the Rising distributed copies of the Proclamation around the city. The Proclamation declared the “Irish Republic as a Sovereign Independent State”, guaranteeing “equal rights and equal opportunities to all its citizens”.
The seven signatories of the Proclamation formed the Provisional Government of Ireland to govern the country until elections were to be held. All seven of the leaders who signed the Proclamation were imprisoned and executed after the Rising at Kilmainham Jail in Dublin.