:"For the British poet Thomas Ashe, see
Thomas Ashe (poet). For the U.S. Congressman and judge from North Carolina, see Thomas Samuel Ashe."Infobox Military Person
name= Thomas Patrick Ashe
_ga. Tomás Ághas
born = birth date|1885|1|12|df=y
died = death date and age|1917|9|25|1885|1|12|df=y
Lispole, County Kerry, Ireland
Mater Hospital, Dublin City, Ireland
Irish Republican Brotherhood Irish Volunteers
serviceyears= 1913 – 1917
Thomas Patrick Ashe (
Irish name: Tomás Pádraig Ághas; 12 January, 1885– 25 September, 1917[cite book | last = Alcobia-Murphy | first = Shane | authorlink = | title = Governing the Tongue | publisher = Cambridge Scholars Publishing| date = 2005 | pages = p. 54 | doi = | isbn = 978-1904303602] ) born in Lispole, County Kerry, Ireland, a teacher, was a member of the Gaelic League, the Irish Republican Brotherhood(IRB) and a founding member of the Irish Volunteers. During the summer of 1913, he was one of the IRB members that Douglas Hyde, president of the Gaelic League, attempted to expel.
Fingal battalionof the Irish Volunteers, Ashe took part in the Easter Risingof 1916. Ashe's force of 60-70 men engaged British forces around north County Dublinduring the rising. The battalion won a major victory in Ashbourne, County Meathwhere they engaged a much larger force capturing a significant quantity of arms and up to 20 Royal Irish Constabulary(RIC) vehicles. 24 hours after the rising collapsed, Ashe's battalion surrendered on the orders of Padraig Pearse. On 8 May 1917, Ashe and Eamon de Valerawere court-martialled and both were sentenced to death. The sentences were commuted to penal servitudefor life. Ashe was imprisoned in LewesGaol in England.
With the entry of the U.S. into
World War Iin April 1917, the British government was put under more pressure to solve the 'Irish problem', de Valera, Ashe and Thomas Hunter led a prisoner hunger strikeon 28 May 1917to add to this pressure. With accounts of prison mistreatment appearing in the Irish press and mounting protests in Ireland, Ashe and the remaining prisoners were freed on 18 June 1917by Lloyd Georgeas part of a general amnesty.
Upon release, Ashe returned to Ireland and began a series of speaking engagements.
In August 1917, Ashe was arrested and charged with
seditionfor a speech that he made in Ballinalee, County Longfordwhere Michael Collins had also been speaking. He was detained at the Curragh but was then transferred to Mountjoy Prisonin Dublin. He was convicted and sentenced to two years hard labour. Ashe and other prisoners, including Austin Stack, demanded prisoner of warstatus as this protest evolved Ashe again went on hunger strike on 20 September 1917. On 25 September 1917, he died at the Mater Hospital after being force-fed by prison authorities. At the inquestinto his death, the jurycondemned the staff at the prison for the "inhuman and dangerous operation performed on the prisoner, and other acts of unfeeling and barbaric conduct". [cite book | last = O'Connor | first = Ulick | authorlink = Ulick O'Connor | title = Michael Collins and the Troubles | publisher = Mainstream Publishing| date = 2001 | pages = p. 124 | doi = | isbn = 1-84018-427-2]
Ashe's death had a significant impact on the country increasing Republican recruitment, his body lay in state at Dublin City Hall, and was buried in
Glasnevin Cemeteryin Dublin.
He was also a relative of Catherine Ashe, the paternal grandmother of American actor
Gregory Peck, who emigrated to the United Statesin the 19th century.
List of people on stamps of Ireland
* [http://unitedireland.tripod.com/id226.html Thomas Ashe song by Martin Dardis]
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