Kilmainham Jail, Dublin
This is an old jail opened in 1796 and closed in 1924. It was the site where many famous revolutionaries were held, and some executed. It was opened over the span of 6 major revolutions. The cost to get in was 5.30 Euros for adults and 2.10 Euros for students, which includes entrance to the museum and a guided tour of the jail, which lasts about 1 hour. The guided tour was actually really well done. The first part of it is a visual slide show where the tour guide explains a brief history of the jail and revolutions which increased its population. The gude was really great and gave just the right amount of information without boring you. You saw cells of famous political prisoners and sites of executions, including memorial plaque and paintings. The museum ther is quite interesting too. I would recommend going through the museum after the tour as many of the items there have significance to the stories you will hear on the tour and will mean a lot more to you after it. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone, young and old.
I wanted to see the place,where they had filmed"In the name of the father".It was as interesting as we thought.We had a little trouble finding the information about opening hours and so on.Net-pages were little odd.
We walked there,and got lost once,when there was one street-name,witch wasn´t in my map.
place was VERY COLD.We didn´t know it had been closed so long,so we were little surprised to hear that.It didn´t seem so old in the film
This fascinating museum is a must see for anyone with an interest in late 19th century/early 20th century Irish history, one of the most tumultuous times in the history of the nation in which the Easter Rising, the War of Independence and The Civil War took place. Kilmainham Jail played a part in all of these events but is chiefly remembered as the place where the leaders of the 1916 Rising were executed.
Kilmainham Jail was opened in 1795 and at the time was outside the city walls. Dublin has of course grown since then and Kilmainham nowadays is a busy suburb of the city. There are excellent displays in the museum on life at the time in Ireland and a discussion of the roles of prisons in society at this time.
What attracts most people to the museum of course is its links with the Rising and the birth of the Irish Republic. The leaders of the Rising were all imprisoned here before being shot and you can see their cells as well as the yard where they were executed. Some of the stories from this time are incredibly sad. Joseph Plunkett, one of the leaders of the Rising was executed in the yard, having been married only hours earlier to Grace Gifford in the prison chapel. James Connolly, another of the leaders, was shot by firing squad despite not being able to stand up after injuries sustained in the Rising. When locals heard of the executions and these stories in particular it helped sway popular opinion in favour of the Rising and against British rule.
The main part of the prison has been used in many films including Michael Collins and In the Name of the Father. Here you can see Eamon De Valera’s (former Irish Taoiseach) cell as well as that of Grace Gifford, which contains a painting of the Madonna. There are regular tours from the front desk and it’s well worth joining one of this as they are informative and interesting. There is also a museum set on three floors.
For a taste of Irish history, particularly Ireland's fight for independence from Britain, visit Kilmainham Gaol. Leaders of the Easter Rising in 1916 were imprisoned and shot here. Be sure to take the guided tour. The exhibits in the museum are also quite interesting and informative. Parts of the movies "In the Name of the Father" and "Michael Collins" were filmed in Kilmainham Gaol.
A MUSTTTTT to visit...
The guided tour is EXCELLENT (+/- 1 hour)
Known because of some famous/legendary people who were prisoned here.
Setting of famous films like In the name of the father, The Italian Job, Michael Collins,.. and is often used as music/recording/studio f.e. sinead o connor
If ever there was a sterotype of how the inside of an old-fashioned prison should look, then Kilmainham jail fits the bill.
The cells extend over four stories or so, built around a central couryard. the room is glass lined, which gives great natural light inside. This design also means that prison warders can easily 'scan' the whole area in moments. The warders used the central broad iron staicase, to move around the jail, whilst the prisoners had a much more enclosed, narrow and steep spiral staircase to use. It really is a masterpiece of design.
It is therefore not surprising that the jail has been used in a whole range of films and TV programmes over the years. It features in 'The name of the father' and 'Michael Collins' but also rather more oddly in 'The Face of Fu Manchu'.
In one of my favourites films, 'The Italian Job' (the original, not the silly Hollywood re-make) the jail was used for the famous Jail scene where the Crime-world boss Mr Bridger (played by Noel Coward) accepts the praise of the prisoners banging their plates on the bannisters following the news that the heist in Turin was a success.
Mr Bridger had given the go-ahead for the raid from inside the jail with the words "Well I hope he likes Spagetti, they serve if four times a day in Italian prisons"
Kilmainham jail remains one of the most poiniant reminders of the violent birth of the Irish nation.
The extreme group of nationalists responsible for the Pheonix park murders, known as 'The Invincibles' were executed here by William Marwood. This famous executioner (he would not use the term 'hangman') from Horncastle in Lincolnshire, UK relished his work. His 'calling card' can still be seen in the museum sextion inside the jail.
The leaders of the uprising of 1916 were also imprisoned here and faced the firing squad rather than the noose. The compulsory tour the jail dwells on the stories and row of cells that held these men.
In particular the tragic story of Joseph Mary Plunkett , the poet is told in some detail. He was at 28, the youngest to sign the declaration of independence at the GPO (general post office), and his fate was sealed. On the final night he married his childhood sweetheart Mary Gifford. His 'honeymoon' consisted of the grand total of 10 minutes in his cell - and even then they wern't left alone to consumate the marriage. It would be nice to think that a blind eye was turned - but I doubt it.
We really enjoyed this informative and sometimes funny tour. You get to see the old jail that has held some of Irelands most famous prisoners. The guide was a young girl who was very knowledgeable and made the tour very interesting. You come away having learned a lot about the history of the country and the people who fought and died to make it a Republic today.
Well worth the long walk from the city centre and the €5.30 entrance.
p.s If you don't like walking get the bus as we took nearly an hour to get there and at 1 point thought we was lost as it is not very well signposted.
A must-see attraction with a bitter theme: This is the jail building where the leaders of the Irish "Easter Rising" 1916 where held and executed by the British. It is a bit difficult to reach - I recommend a taxi or a bus. The guided tour of the prison is excellent: The tour guide will provide some heartwrenching anecdotes. One insurgent was married on the jail grounds, only to be executed a few minutes later. It is said his wife heard the shots while leaving the building. You leave the gaol with respect for the people who fought against all odds to build a free Ireland.
Kilmainham Gaol, or Jail in english is one of my top three attractions in Dublin and a definite must see!
Opened in the late 18th century it remained in service until 1924.
The entrance fee is 5,30 euro and that includes a simply superb guided tour of the prison during which you will learn LOTS about the irish history.
The gaol is possibly most imfamous for being the place where 14 of the rebels were executed in the early days of May 1916 after the easter rebellion. Among those shot where PH Pearse who was the one reading out the proclamation of Independence on Easter Monday 1916 in the GPO on O'Connell Street and James Connolly who was the last one to be executed. He was in so bad shape that the doctors had said there was nothing more to be done for him and that he wouldn't survive many days more. He was nevertheless brought in an ambulance car to the gaol and driven through a large gate into the jail yard to be shot. He was however so weak that neither could he walk the 20 metres to the side of the yard where the other 13 had been executed, nor could he stand up at all. The executing was therefor delayed for quite some time while the prison guards arranged for a chair to be brought to which he was tied down with ropes and shot. This led to international outcry and the prime minister of the United Kingdom ordered all further executions to be halted and cancelled, saving the lives of some 70 more people scheduled to be executed the following days.
In one of the pictures here you can see the gate through which Connolly was driven and the black cross where he was shot. In the other picture you can see the mid 19th century new block of the prison with lots of sunlight and solitary confinement cells, something completely new to the time.
The new block has featured in many movies including "In the name of the father" with Daniel Day Lewis.
The gaol is opened daily, from around 10 to 4.
This jail had a very authentic feel to it, and one of the few tourist attractions in Dublin that was not crowded. Before entering the jail, there was an exhibit which provided a ton of information about Dublin's history. A guided tour was included in the price of admission, as well as a short film about the jail's history. I really enjoyed my visit, and would recommend it to anyone who is interested in Irish history.
Kilmainham Gaol functioned as a rigorous house of punishment and correction from 1796 to 1924.Leaders of every Irish rebellion between 1798 and 1916 were incarcerated here.We took a 45 minute guided tour which shows you how the prison was run,the prisioners and conditions,there was no heating in the prison so take a jacket with you,some parts of the tour are awful they show you the yard where they executed them,there is also a museum showing letters the prisioners sent which was heartbreaking.
One of the largest unoccupied gaols in Europe, covering some of the most heroic and tragic events in Ireland's emergence as a modern nation from 1780s to the 1920s.
It has now been converted into a tourist attraction that includes a major exhibition detailing the political and penal history of the prison and its restoration. The tour of the prison includes an audio-visual show.
The guided tour here was well worth it and the guide provided very pertinent information about the jail and how it ties in with Ireland's history and fight for independence.
At the time of my visit there was also an art exhibition utlisiing the cells surrounding the main courtyard.
The Kilmainham Prison gives excellent tours describing prison conditions in the 19th century as well as the history of Ireland's independence movement (since many of the key people fighting for independence were imprisoned here).
Originally built in 1792, in 1798 it was used to imprison members of the Society of United Irishmen, Young Irelanders were held here in the 1840s, and the leaders of the Easter Rising were executed here in 1916.
Admission is 5.30 Euro for adults and 2.10 Euro for children.
The Kilmainham Gaol was the city jail for hundreds of years. Bleak, depressing, hopeless. All these thoughts envelope your head as you tour through the barren cells, church and walkways. This is where the British held and excuted the leaders of the Easter Uprising. You are taken into the actual yard and it seems like it had happend only a day before. In the movie "Michael Collins" the scene in the gaol is so real it is unnerving. Don't miss the Post Office where these leaders fought and were captured.