Quiet Man actor took part in 1916 Easter Rising

0
166
Arthur Shields from The Quiet Man

An author discovered that one of the most famous films in Irish history features an actor who took part in the Easter Rising.

Dermot McEvoy is an expert on the Easter Rising and he reveals that the man who played the Reverend Mister Playfair in The Quiet Man was one of the rebels imprisoned in Stafford 36 years earlier.

Arthur Shields from The Quiet Man

The Quiet Man stars John Wayne as an Irish emigrant who returns to his homeland to reclaim a farm that is rightfully his.

The 1952 hit movie also featured Dublin born brothers Barry Fitzgerald and Arthur Shields. Both were born on Walsworth Street in Dublin in the late 19th century. Both men often played Catholic priests in their films but were actually born into a Protestant family.

Shields was tasked with running the Rising’s Radio Station

Arthur was a member of the Irish Volunteers. He had hidden a rifle under the stage at the Abbey Theatre. On Easter Monday he retrieved the rifle and joined James Connolly and his men at Liberty Hall.

He was part of the group that occupied the General Post Office along with Connolly, Michael Collins, Patrick Pearse, Tom Clarke and Sean MacDiarmada.

Arthur Shields was one of a small group of the Volunteers tasked with running the Rising’s Radio Station. Using stolen equipment they broadcast news of the Rising to the world. They continued for about 24 hours until the British shelled the building on the corner of Lower Abbey Street, and it burnt to the ground. This was a world’s first in the use of radio by any revolutionary group.

Shields was captured and imprisoned in England and later in Wales along with Collins. They were both released at Christmas 1916.

Be a friend of Ireland Calling

Falling income due to Covid is threatening our ability to bring you the best articles and videos about Ireland. A small monthly donation would help us continue writing the stories our readers love. As a thank you, we’ll email you a free gift each month you donate. Ireland Calling

Fitzgerald was born William Joseph Shields and went on to win an Oscar for his performance in Going My Way. The building where the brothers were born is next to the Jewish museum in Dublin and contains a plaque to commemorate Fitzgerald’s birthplace.


More popular articles and videos

The mystery of what Maureen O’Hara whispered to make John Wayne look so shocked





Meghan Markle can trace her family tree back to Ireland




Matt Damon winning hearts and minds with charm assault on Ireland





Cork trio perform best Irish dance video of the year




Action hero Tom Cruise was once attacked by an old man in a Kerry pub





Celebrate with the top 10 Irish recipes

Liam Neeson speaks about his late wife in emotional interview





Dating site explains why Irish men make wonderful husband material





How to become an Irish citizen




Billy Connolly says public should ignore politicians and listen to comedians




Take a look inside Hollywood star Saoirse Ronan’s stunning Irish home