Denis McCullough talks to Brian Farrell about the restructuring of the Irish Republican Brotherhood and the movement's role in the Easter Rising.
- Title The Survivors Denis McCullough
- Production Year 1965
- ContributorBrian Farrell (Presenter)
- Clip Duration 00:30:12
- Material Type Video
- Series title The Survivors
- Clip title "I had no other ambition other than to serve the national movement"
- Extended description
Denis McCullough grew up in Belfast where his parents were both separatists. At the age of 17 McCullough's father took him to a meeting of the Irish Republican Brotherhood to have him sworn in to the movement.
He explains how he in 1915 he reluctantly became President of the IRB having been persuaded by Sean McDermott. McCullough recalls the IRB has being a tired and old organisation until his generation took it over and restructured it. He says that the IRB was key to the foundation of the Irish Volunteers because they already had a presence across the country.
At a meeting in the Clontarf Town Hall in 1915 it was decided that a rising would have to take place before the First World War ended. Although McCullough says they were aware that there would not be widespread public support for a rising it was felt that "an armed demonstration against English occupation" must take place.
The planning and organisation of the Easter Rising was down to the IRB. A military committee within the IRB of Connolly, Pearse, McDermott, Clarke, McDonagh, Ceannt and Plunkett were left to their own devices.
He is keen to emphasise that Tom Clarke was the inspiration for the rising to take place. McCullough recalls Clarke as having only one idea in his mind, the freedom of Ireland and that it should be gotten by "physical effort".
In Belfast McCullough is anxious that due recognition it given to F.J. Biggar a Protestant who fostered and supported many nationalist movements and organisations.
This interview was recorded on 8 March 1965.
In the early 1960s Telefís Éireann (RTÉ Television) began to record interviews with individuals who had taken part in the Easter Rising and the War of Independence. These interviews were recorded under the working title of 'The Survivors' under 'a special projects' label.
The Survivors interviews were never broadcast as a series in themselves. Early in 1965 a group was established to plan how RTÉ would commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Easter Rising. A decision was taken not to broadcast the Survivors interviews as a series.
Around 14 individuals were interviewed under the Survivors title. The first Survivors interviews were organised by Jack White and recorded at the television studios in Donnybrook on 31 August 1964. Desmond Ryan, Cathal O'Shannon and M.W. O'Reilly were interviewed by Brian Farrell.
- Local keywords IRB, Irish Republican Brotherhood, 1916, Easter 1916, Easter Rising 1916, Denis McCullough, Brian Farrell, Belfast, Sean McDermott, Tom Clarke, F.J. Biggar
- Geographical coverage Ireland
- Topic Wars and Conflict
- Publisher Broadcaster RTÉ
- Country of production Ireland
- Original identifier 94D00040
- IPR restrictions Rights Reserved - Free Access
- Rights terms and conditions
Copyright RTÉ. This material may not be replicated in any form or manner without the prior express permission of RTÉ. Any form of reproduction in print, television, video, multimedia, web site or other electronic media or any form of dissemination for commercial or non-commercial use must be licensed by the RTÉ Archives.
If you wish to licence video or audio clips, still images or text, or would like further guidance please contact us.
RTÉ Archives are committed to respecting the copyright of others and have attempted to source and credit the copyright owners of all material used here. RTÉ would like to hear from any copyright owners who are not properly identified here so that the necessary corrections can be made. If you feel your copyright has not been respected please contact us.
- Item type whole
- Item colour Black and White
- Item sound Mono
- Aspect ratio 4:3
- Language used English (eng)
Praying to God to Crown the German Eagles with Victory
Clip Length - 00:30:42
"I had no other ambition other than to serve the national movement"
Clip Length - 00:30:12
"It was a very informal affair"
Clip Length - 00:29:36
"The date is fixed"
Clip Length - 00:29:16
"A Succession of Events"
Clip Length - 00:32:16