In 1914 Emily joined the newly formed Cumann na mBan, translating as the Irish Women’s Council. Her friends such as Margot and Frances (Saidbh) Trench and Antia McMahon had already joined and Eva O’Flaherty was connected with the organisation too. Cumann na mBan was formed on 2nd April 1914 in Wynn’s Hotel in Dublin City Centre. Emily may have been at the founding meeting too, although it is impossible to find out now. She would have been in agreement of their aims.
They adopted a constitution which stated their aims were:
– To Advance the cause of Irish liberty
– To organise Irish women in the furtherance of that objective
– To assist in arming and equipping a body of Irish men for the defence of Ireland
– To form a fund for these purposes to be called the ‘Defence of Ireland Fund’.
Cumann na mBan needed a wide range of volunteers ,of which nurses were of utmost importance. Emily could and did lend her skills there. Many years later fellow Cumann na mBan member Kathleen Walsh from Waterford in an article The Fighting Spirit of Waterford: Cumann na mBan Memories;
“A Mrs Weddall a most efficient nurse was sent to us from Headquarters. She also gave us a course of lectures..”
To read more about the formation of Cumann na mBan: http://www.rte.ie/news/2014/0328/605079-cumann-na-mban-centenary