When I was on my holiday in Cork I visited a heritage centre called Cork City Gaol. While I was in the Gaol I saw models of prisoners that were locked up in cells in the 19th and early 20th Century.
In the west wing there was a warder who kept an eye on all the areas. There are two original cell wings on the left and right sides of the great circular drum Gallery.
The man on his knees was called Thomas Raile. He had a four month sentence because he stole books and other articles. He is praying with a protestant called Chaplain Rev Nelligan.
This is a cell to try out to see what it is like to be a prisoner. Thankfully I didn’t get locked up in there.
This is James Burns alias Henry White. He was sentenced for six months because he conned a number of shop owners into delivering a set of new clothes and a fine leather luggage to a hotel. He attempted to flee cork before the bill was paid. He got caught just before the 10.10 train was going to leave for Dublin and he got arrested with the goods.
Here is 16 year old Mary-Ann Twohig who gave birth to her son in the Gaol hospital just one month into her two month sentence. She stole a mans cloth cap with some other clothing and kitchen utensils.
Mary McDonnell was a prisoner for neglecting her children and for beating one of them while she was drunk. She was sentenced for one month while her children were sent to the workhouse.
Here is Countless Markievicz. She was sentenced for four months for delivering a seditious speech at Newmarket. she warned her audience against British authorities. In the Cell she is writing a letter to her sister about her cell conditions.
This is 10 year old Julia Twomney sitting on her cell floor. She was sentenced for 14 days for attempting to steal a bellows from a shop on Georges Qauy.
Edward O’Brien was sentenced for three weeks because he stole a couple of brass ball cocks. He had twice-weekly whippings.
Dr Beamish treated 80 to 100 sick patients who were admitted to goal hospital each year. The diseases were typhus fever and smallpox. He is standing there with his medical bag in his hand. A Gaol warden accompanied him.
Governor John Barry-Murphy sat at his desk writting his papers in The Governors office. He Governed in there between 1856 and 1873.
The Gaol became home to Cork’s first radio station called Cork 6CK a few years after it closed in 1923.