Emily Arabella Maynard Burke was born on September 1867 at Windsor Terrace, in the quiet little town of Edenderry, Co. Offaly, then King’s County. In the year of her birth one of the major uprisings against British Rule in Ireland took place, the Fenian Rising of 1867. It failed. Many of the leaders were arrested and imprisoned in the UK.
Later on that year, in the aftermath of the uprising, which took place on the very day of Emily’s birth an event took place in Manchester, England:
18th September 1867 is documented in Fenian Folklore as the day of the “Smashing of the Van.” Interestingly enough, nearly fifty years later Emily was imprisoned for her attempt to take part in the Uprising of Easter 1916, which had roots in that of 1867. In 1922 Ireland won her freedom, a tiny part of that could be attributed to Emily. A lifelong Nationalist her favorite song was Bold Fenian Men also called, Down by the Glenside. Penned in the wake of the 1916 Rising by Peadar Kearney who also wrote the Irish National Anthem, The Soldier Song. No doubt his and Emily’s paths crossed occasionally. Perhaps she got to complement him personally for penning her favorite song.
Happy Birthday Emily
Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser 18 September 1867 https://www.rte.ie/archives/2017/1011/911615-fenian-rising-centenary/ https://www.historyireland.com/18th-19th-century-history/who-were-the-manchester-martyrs/
On this day in 1955 Dr. Kathleen Lynn was laid to rest in her family plot in Deansgrange Cemetery, Dublin. Dr. Lynn and Emily’s friendship spanned at least four decades, up till Emily’s death in 1952. Kathleen outlived her by three years. The two women had much in common, their lives taking similar courses. Both had careers in the medical field, Kathleen a doctor, Emily a nurse.
Dr. Lynn graduated from the college. She was one of a small number of girls that won scholarships to the University of Dublin, where she began her medical career.
It is one hundred years since the founding of St. Ultan’s Hospital, by Dr. Kathleen Lynn and Madeline Ffrench Mullen. It was supported by many of Dr. Lynn’s and Emily’s mutual friends, Darrell and Millie Figgis, Maude Gonne and the Williams sisters along with many more people of influence. The Hospital was set up in response to medical and social conditions in Dublin, particularly for women and children at the time. Many were living in dire poverty and the infant mortality particularly high. The Hospital was staffed by female doctors including Dr. Alice Barry and Dr Dorothy Stopford-Price.
Emily helped out when she could and no doubt contributed to and/or helped with the fundraising. A nurse by profession she helped in the hospital from time to time too.
When the hospital opened in May 1919, it had only two cots, so fundraising was necessary. One such event took place a few months later.
https://www.irishtimes.com/culture/heritage/healthcare-in-the-war-of-independence-st-ultan-s-children-s-hospital-1.3750, Mon, Jan 21, 2019, 00:00 Sinéad McCoole
Paul Henry lived on Achill from 1910 to 1919. He had intended only to stay as long as his return ticket permitted but:
“The currents of life had carried me to this remote spot, and there seemed no current strong enough to carry me away…I made another of my quick decisions, which I never regretted and taking my return ticket to London out of my pocket tore it into small pieces and scattered the fragments into the sea which foamed round the rocks of Gubalennaun.”
The West of Ireland, Achill and Connemara inspired him like no other place and became subject of a great body of his work, perhaps his most most iconic paintings are of both places. Below is curious article from 1921, in which he exhibited with a youngish Picasso.
Emily’s maternal great-grandfather, Daniel Graisberry was chief printer to Trinity College in the early 1800’s. Having been made a Freeman of Dublin, in 1798 in that capacity. Freemen were usually tradesmen and craftsmen, which included weavers and tailors, shoemakers, stationers and printers to mention but a few. They usually served as apprentices, just as Daniel Graisberry. His father was also conferred as a freeman, serving as apprentice to the King’s printer, Hugh Greirson.
A freeman was a recognised citizen, which afforded him the right to vote and a few more similar privileges that the general public did not avail of. Interestingly his great granddaughter, Emily, who campaigned for votes for women did not get the right to vote until it was granted in 1918. She was over fifty at the time.
Saunders’s News-Letter 20 October 1820
A Dictionary of Members of the Dublin Book Trade 1550-1800By Mary Pollard, Guild of St. Luke the Evangelist, Bibliographical Society (Great Britain), Guild of St Luke the Evangelist (Dublin