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1916 - Wynn's Hotel

During the 1916 rising a street barricade, which had been erected outside, Wynn's was set on fire by incendiary bullets. A rebel volunteer on the roof of the GPO later recalled how he saw mean and women “sitting in the windows of Wynn’s Hotel in Lwr Abbey St, watching the battle as from a theatre seat”. Then, what began as entertainment for the guests turned dangerous. Under bombardment from British artillery, Wynn’s caught fire, the fire spread from the barricade to the timber facings of the hotel and when guest and staff lives were threatened, they left the hotel under the protection of a makeshift white flag and found refuge in The Clarence Hotel. They had succeeded in getting there by Butt Bridge and the South Quays under the protection of the improvised white flag.

Wynn’s was destroyed after the fire and the re-build did not start until 1921.

485 people were killed in the Easter Rising. About 54% were civilians, 30% were British military and police, and 16% were Irish rebels. More than 2,600 were wounded. Many of the civilians were killed because of the British using artillery and heavy machine guns, or mistaking civilians for rebels. Others were caught in the crossfire in a crowded city. The shelling and the fires it caused left parts of Dublin City in ruins.

In December 1918, republicans, now members of the newly reformed Sinn Féin party, won a landslide victory in the general election to the British Parliament. Rather than take their seats, they instead convened the First Dáil and declared the independence of the Irish Republic, which led to the War of Independence.

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