1798 Rebellion Begins
On this day in 1798, the United Irishmen start a rebellion, the largest rebellion in Irish Revolutionary history.
The initial plan was to take Dublin, with the counties bordering Dublin to rise in support and prevent the arrival of reinforcements followed by the rest of the country who were to tie down other garrisons.
The signal to rise was to be spread by the interception of the mail coaches from Dublin. However, last-minute intelligence from informants provided the British with details of rebel assembly points in Dublin and a huge force of military occupied them barely one hour before the United Irishmen were to assemble.
The British then arrested most of the rebel leaders in the city, the gathering groups of rebels quickly dispersed, abandoning the intended rallying points, and dumping their weapons in the surrounding lanes.
The plan to intercept the mail coaches miscarried, with only the Munster-bound coach halted at Johnstown, near Naas, on the first night of the rebellion.
But the surrounding counties around Dublin did rise that night and the first clashes of the rebellion occurred in the early hours of May 24th 1798.