Ireland in 1913 was a country in turmoil, divided by the issue of Home Rule – self-government for the country. Against this backdrop, a violent industrial conflict took centre stage: The Dublin Lockout
William Martin Murphy and other Dublin employers locked the workers out of their premises from August 1913 until January 1914. WM Murphy was a nationalist politician, Ireland’s first “press baron” and the leading promoter of tram development. From the 1890s onwards Murphy resisted repeated demands for a 9 hour working day from the tramway workers, who earned 25% less than their Belfast and Glasgow counterparts. He mobilised the Protestant and Catholic business elite of the City and repelled the pressures of Larkin his worker and the Irish Transport and General Workers’ Union (ITGWU).
Born on January 21, 1876, in Liverpool, England, James Larkin established the ITGWU which became the region’s biggest union. The goal of the union was to combine all Irish industrial workers, skilled and unskilled, into one organization.
“The great appear great because we are on our knees. Let us rise!” ― James Larkin
Larkin later formed the Irish Labour Party and was responsible for leading a series of strikes, with the most significant being the 1913 Dublin Lockout where more than 100,000 workers went on strike for nearly eight months, eventually winning the right to fair employment.
Set in the shadow of the Lockout, Plunkett’s best-selling novel Strumpet City is the epic story of this struggle and solidarity
The Risen People is a play told through the familiar characters of Annie, Fitz, Rashers and Hennessy.
Unfortunately the last show is tonight (1st Feb) but do try and catch it if it is repeated or goes on tour.
Here’s the last Noble Call by Panti
If you miss it, a must to see is the Dublin Lockout exhibition at the National Library, 2 Kildare Street, ( admission free, August 2013 to Autumn 2014) which examines the background, events and aftermath of the struggle. Visitors can share the experiences of those who lived through the Lockout, gaining a greater understanding of the issues facing the people of Dublin in 1913, and hear the opinions of present day commentators through short films and interactive touch screens.