Object Detail

Driving Licence

Driving licence and licence renewal issued to Thomas Ashe.

Thomas ('Tom') Ashe, Commander of the Fingal battalion of the Irish Volunteers, was a major figure in the 1916 Easter Rising in the Dublin area. He was imprisoned in 1917 for speaking at a Sinn Féin meeting in Ballinalee, County Longford, and died on hunger strike in Mountjoy Prison, Dublin on 25 September 1917.

Ashe's motorcycle, for which he received this licence, was offered as a prize in an auction to raise money for the construction of the Ashe Memorial Hall, Tralee, Co. Kerry (now Kerry County Museum).

A picture of Ashe's sister Nora, with the motorcycle, is also included in this exhibition. Nora was herself involved in the rising, and subsequent War of Independence. In her own words, she 'did odd jobs for Tom Clarke and others [and]...During the Black and Tan period took messages from Limerick to Dublin'.

Nora’s contribution to the 1916 Rising is not as apparent as that of her fellow country-women who were members of Cumann na mBan. However, it is clear that events during and as a consequence of Easter Week 1916, particularly the death of her beloved brother, laid the foundations of her political activism during the War of Independence – essentially: the Easter Rising inspired Nora Ashe to further action.

Object Details

County Borough of Dublin
Dublin, Ireland
This item is no longer in copyright. It was donated to the Inspiring Ireland project by the owner, Caoimhe Mairtin, to be shared under a CC0 licence.