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Remembered Today:

2/Lt Guy Pinfield, 8/KRI Hussars, d. Dublin 24/04/16


rugbyremembers

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I am posting names that have not been specifically posted before, although helpful and observant members of the Forum have found them on the Rugby Remembers website and supplied me with some snippets. I hope to harness the collective power of the Forum to build on the files I have on these men. You may wish to visit the site at www.rugbyremembers.co.uk to see what I have already.

Wounded, later died, on the first day of the Easter Rising at Dublin Castle. Any detail on the storming of the castle most welcome. Apparently tended to by one Francis Sheehy-Skeffington, who was then summarily arrested and executed by a Capt JC Bowen-Colthurst.

Grateful for more information on these connected incidents.

Many thanks

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There was a thread on Bowen-Colthurst only a couple of days ago, Stephen. There was a lot of info in it.

The best book on the Dublin uprising is Charles Townshend, EASTER 1916. One unforeseen consequence of the uprising was the burning of the Public Record Office in Dublin and the loss of thousands of records.

Mike

I am posting names that have not been specifically posted before, although helpful and observant members of the Forum have found them on the Rugby Remembers website and supplied me with some snippets. I hope to harness the collective power of the Forum to build on the files I have on these men. You may wish to visit the site at www.rugbyremembers.co.uk to see what I have already.

Wounded, later died, on the first day of the Easter Rising at Dublin Castle. Any detail on the storming of the castle most welcome. Apparently tended to by one Francis Sheehy-Skeffington, who was then summarily arrested and executed by a Capt JC Bowen-Colthurst.

Grateful for more information on these connected incidents.

Many thanks

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Many thanks. Funnily enough I have this morning discovered the Bowen-Colthurst thread through google - ironically it is easier to search the Forum through google than using the Forum search function.

This story of Skeeffington, Vane and B-C is a perfect example for what my book will be about - following a small clue (Pinfield) that widens into a much bigger and complex theme/story. Rather like following a forum thread....

Thanks for the book tip. The other recommended book is Caulfield's but the combined lending libararies of London do not have it.

rgds Stephen

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  • 2 weeks later...

Re Burning of the Public Record Office in Dublin

It was not during the Easter Rising in 1916 that this occurred, but at the Four Courts in 1922

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Dublin

The relevant bit from Wikipedia is in June 1922

"Several hours before the surrender, at either 11:30, or 2:15 the Irish Public Records Office located in the western block of the Four Courts, which had been used as an ammunition store by the Four Courts garrison, was the centre of a huge explosion, blowing to pieces one thousand years of Irish state and religious archives. Forty advancing Free State troops were badly injured [9]. It was alleged by the National Army Headquarters that the Anti-treaty forces deliberately booby-trapped the Public Record office in order to kill advancing Free State troops. Tim Healy, who was a partisan government supporter, alleged that the explosion was the result of land-mines laid before the surrender, which exploded after the surrender.[10] However, a study of the battle concluded that the explosion was caused by fires ignited by the shelling of the Four Courts, which eventually reached two truck loads of gelignite in the munitions factory. A towering mushroom cloud rose 200 feet over the Four Courts [9]. Calton Younger (1968) identified 3 explosions; ".. two beneath the Records Office at about 2.15 [pm] and another at the back of the building at about 5 o'clock.." [11]

The British can be blamed for many things in Dublin, but they had left by 1922!

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it was the Irish 1881 and 1891 census records (pulped during WW1) and the Irish Crown Jewels that the British lost ;-)

The National Library of Ireland has a nice little website re the Rising :

http://www.nli.ie/1916/

which has a small piece about Sheehy Skeffington. It has a PDF of a book listing those killed and wound. 2nd Lt Pinfield is list as 8th Hussars but sadly no further info.

Memorials to Pinfield in St Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin and in St Michael's Church in Bishop Stortford

http://www.irishwarmemorials.ie/html/getPD...?memorialID=415

http://www.ukniwm.org.uk/server?show=conMe...kToPrevSearch=1

There's a photo of his gravestone in Grangegorman here

http://www.twgpp.org/information.php?id=1100729

There's a reference to Pinfield in 17th May 1963 issue of the Irish Times and I assume that this is to do with his exhumation from Dublin Castle Cemetery to Grangegorman. The Irish Times archive was free to view until the 13th December so just missed out on checking what the story was.

Depot Squadrons of the 4th and 8th Hussars made up the 10th Reserve Cavalry Regt and were stationed at the Curragh, Co Kildare.

In the 1901 census, Guy V Pinfield appears to be living in Hove with his widowed mother Gertrude and older sister Nora. His sister and himself appear to have been born in India. They are living on own means so appear reasonably well off.

Nora's recorded on the IGI as born in India 1/6/1892; christened 23/7/1892. Daughter of Frank and Gertrude Pinfield.

There's a marriage record for Frank Pinfield and Gertrude Simkins at :

http://www.broxtowehundred.co.uk/lowdp1.htm

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Quite a good summary of how and where and when Irish Census records were lost given here and much of it is down to the British.

Irish Crown Jewels theft - never actually pined on anyone but believed to have been either Vicars or Shackelton - both Irish ;)

By the way, to search this Forum you are better off using the "Beta Search" tab in blue at the top of the page, rather than the "Search" which gets far too many results

Anyway back to the original question, about Dublin Castle during the Rising. I have done a fair amount of work on this, as my grandfather was in the Dublin Fusiliers party that "relieved" the Castle. I have a page here that includes the Castle and its role

It is very difficult to get facts about the minutia during the Rising. History has been written by the winners (the side in Ireland that eventually came out on top) and the British have, as usual with these things, ignored their setbacks. So little has been written about the British movements during the Rising.

In essence, Dublin Castle had very few men on duty there on the day the Rising started - most of them were at the Races outside Dublin. A small group of rebels attacked the guardhouse, and shot a policeman standing at the gate, You can still see the marks on the guardhouse door surrounds. They got no further than the guardhouse, and did not press home the attack. It was a very small group of only a dozen or so at that time. And it then went into the City Hall opposite the Castle.

Fighting started at noon. The Castle was relieved between 1.40 p.m. and 2.0 p.m., 50 men of 3rd Royal Irish Rifles, and 130 men of the 10th Royal Dublin Fusiliers reached the Castle by the Ship Street entrance. At 4.45 p.m. the first train from the Curragh arrived at Kingsbridge station, and by 5.20 p.m. the whole Cavalry Column, 1,600 strong, under the command of Colonel Portal, had arrived, one train being sent on from Kingsbridge to North Wall by the loop line to reinforce the guard over the docks.

There was a fair amount of sniping by both sides around the Castle, from and at the rebel group in the City Hall.

A Sergeant with my grandfather was shot - 25692 L/ Sergeant Frederick William Robert Burke 10th Battalion had enlisted in Gravesend, died 28 April 1916 age 21. Connolly and his small force had scaled the iron front gates of City Hall and installed themselves in the city hall. Connolly had previously been employed there in the Motor Taxation Office and would have been familiar with the layout of the building. On entering, he deployed half his men on the ground floor, proceeding himself with the remainder (including his brother Matthew) to the roof circling the huge dome. Shortly afterward the British soldiers who had arrived at the Ship Street barracks (this includes the 10th Dubs) began to concentrate fire on City Hall. Snipers from surrounding high points began to pick off the rebels one by one and Connolly himself was reputedly shot around two o’ clock by a sniper operating from the Castle clock tower. According to some reports he slid down the roof after being shot and the Citizen Army medical officer, Dr Kathleen Lynn, tried to reach him on the parapet but was unable to do so.

It is a slow and painstaking job to piece together today what went on in the Castle that afternoon. Irish reports concentrate on Connolly, and virtually nothing exists in the British records on the details brom the British side.

I would be extremely interested if anyone can actually answer the original question on the details surrounding 2nd Lt Guy Pinfield's death, all I can give is this broad outline on the relief of the Castle and what happened against City Hall that afternoon.

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There is more detail in Max Caulfield's book The Easter Rebellion, although poor Guy does seem to be condemned to be a 'footnote in history'. If it wasn't for the Sheehy-Skeffington link, he might well have been expunged completely.

I hope to work on this chapter over Xmas so will send more if I find.

Stephen

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  • 1 year later...

There is also an earlier, quite heated, thread on this Forum in case you missed that in your search

Corisande,

There has been a recent article by a Turtle Bunbury (google him and article is on his website) occasioned by the auction sale of a locket showing Pinfield. Bunbury seems to have a little more on the death of Pinfield. I have also corresponded with a JW Durham in the USA who has written a fictionalised account, based on oral history passed down within his family/circle of acquantance. Again by some lengthy googling you will find the excerpt from his novel.

Bunbury's article gets a few details wrong (eg place of birth for Pinfield) but is interesting.

Wrt the locket, I sent my draft chapter on Pinfield to the auctioneer, who promptly included it in the sale, without asking. The promised contact with the vendor (family) has not come about.

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