G.P.O Dublin (General Post Office)
The G.P.O or the General Post Office in Dublin is famous for being the scene of the biggest battle of the 1916 rising. It is one of Ireland’s most famous buildings and one of the last public Georgian Buildings to have been erected in Dublin city. The building opened for business in 1818 on Sackville Street, which is now O’Connell Street Dublin’s main thoroughfare. Up until 1966 The G.P.O looked out on to the 121 feet high Nelson’s Pillar. The Pillar was blown up by the I.R.A on the 50th anniversary of the 1916 rising, feeling that an English man should not be towering over the main street in Dublin.
The late president Eamon De Valera is said to have called the Irish Press and suggested the headline “British Admiral Leaves Dublin By Air”. Of course the blowing up of a statue is highly dangerous if not a little foolish, but thankfully and remarkably not one person was hurt.The GPO was selected by the leaders of the 1916 rising as the headquarters for the rebellion due to its centrality and symbolism.
The entire building with the exception of the façade and pillars was destroyed by fire and shells and was not rebuilt until after the war of independence (1919 – 1921). Due to its role in the rebellion the G.P.O has taken a special place in the hearts of Irish nationalists and is now adorned by a statue of Irish mythical hero Cú Chulainn. There is a museum inside the building as well as the statue of Cú Chulainn but the most interesting part is the bullet holes from the rising in the pillars outside. This is truly a piece of living history that you can experience first-hand.