Seamus Rafter - The Life and Times (2)

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The book 'Seamus Rafter: The Life and Times' was written by Ballindaggin man Seamus Rafter who chronicles the life and career of his uncle, Seamus Rafter, who was Commandant of 'A Company Volunteers', Enniscorthy, leading up to and during the Easter Rising 1916. Seamus Rafter was born in Monalee, Ballindaggin in 1873 and died in 1918 as the result of an explosion. The book gives details of his early life in Ballindaggin, his apprenticeship in Enniscorthy to the grocery business, his dedication to 'A Company' Volunteers and to the cause of Irish freedom. As an avid supporter of the Irish language he was a key figure in setting up the Enniscorthy branch of the Gaelic League. He was a trusted and inspiring leader, leading up to and during the Rising, when the tricolour flew for a week over Enniscorthy. After the surrender, he was sentenced to death, later commuted and was interned in various prisons including Dartmoor and Frongoch. On his release he once again devoted himself completely to his dream of Irish independence. His untimely death was an irreparable loss to the movement. After his funeral, which was one of the largest ever seen in the town, he was interred in his native Ballindaggin. The book is an informative and comprehensive account of the events at the time in Enniscorthy and is bound to be invaluable to all interested in the period, especially people from the Ballindaggin area. The author has drawn information from witness statements and other primary sources including his own family archives.