Seán Mac Diarmada
|Seán Mac Diarmada|
28 February 1883|
Kiltyclogher, County Leitrim, Ireland
|Died||12 May 1916
Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin, Ireland
|Allegiance||Irish Republican Brotherhood
|Years of service||1913–1916|
|Rank||Supreme Council IRB
Military Committee IRB
Seán Mac Diarmada (28 February 1883 – 12 May 1916) (born John MacDermott, usually used the name Sean MacDermott) was one of the leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising in Ireland.
Early life 
Surrounding Mac Diarmada in rural Corranmore, north Leitrim, there were signs of Irish history throughout the area. There was an ancient sweat-house, Mass rocks from the penal times and the persecutions of the 17th and 18th centuries, and deserted abodes as an aftermath of the hunger of the 1840s. He was educated by the Irish Christian Brothers. In 1908 he moved to Dublin, by which time he already had a long involvement in several Irish separatist and cultural organizations, including Sinn Féin, the Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB), the Ancient Order of Hibernians and the Gaelic League. He was soon promoted to the Supreme Council of the IRB and eventually elected secretary.
In 1910 he became manager of the radical newspaper Irish Freedom, which he founded along with Bulmer Hobson and Denis McCullough. He also became a national organizer for the IRB, and was taken under the wing of veteran Fenian Tom Clarke. Indeed over the year the two became nearly inseparable. Shortly thereafter Mac Diarmada was stricken with polio and forced to walk with a cane.
In November 1913 Mac Diarmada was one of the original members of the Irish Volunteers, and continued to work to bring that organization under IRB control. In May 1915 Mac Diarmada was arrested in Tuam, County Galway, under the Defense of the Realm Act for giving a speech against enlisting into the British Army.
Easter Rising 
Following his release in September 1915, he joined the secret Military Committee of the IRB, which was responsible for planning the rising. Indeed Mac Diarmada and Clarke were the people most responsible for it.
Due to his disability, Mac Diarmada took little part in the fighting of Easter week, but was stationed at the headquarters in the General Post Office. Following the surrender, he nearly escaped execution by blending in with the large body of prisoners. He was eventually recognized by Daniel Hoey of G Division. Following a court-martial on May 9, Mac Diarmada was executed by firing squad on May 12 at the age of 33. In September 1919 Hoey was shot dead by Michael Collins's Squad. Likewise, the British Officer Lee-Wilson, who ordered Mac Diarmada to be shot, rather than imprisoned, was also killed in Cork on Collins's order during the Irish War of Independence.
Before his execution, Mac Diarmada wrote, "I feel happiness the like of which I have never experienced. I die that the Irish nation might live!”.
Seán MacDermott Street in Dublin is named in his honour. So too is Mac Diarmada rail station in Sligo, and Páirc Sheáin Mhic Dhiarmada, the Gaelic Athletic Association stadium in Carrick-on-Shannon. Sean MacDermott tower in Ballymun, demolished in 2005, was also named after him. In his hometown of Kiltyclogher a statue enscribed with his final written words - see above - was erected in the village centre, his childhood home has become a National Monument. 
- "Seán MacDiarmada". The 1916 Rising: Personalities and Perspectives. National Library of Ireland. 2006. Retrieved 18 Nov 2010.
- MacAtasney, Gerard (2004). Seán MacDiarmada: the mind of a revolution. Manorhamilton, Co. Leitrim: Drumlin. p. 6. ISBN 978-1-873437-31-5.
- Michael Collins: A Life;James Mackay p135
- http://www.archaeology.ie/en/NationalMonuments/SearchByCounty/FileDownload,305,en.pdf National Monuments in County Leitrim
See also