A site of historical importance, in the years leading up to the Rising, is Wynn’s Hotel on Abbey St. On the 11th of November 1913 a meeting was held at the hotel, and under the chairmanship of Eoin MacNeil, the military organisation of ‘The Irish Volunteers’ (in Irish: Óglaigh na hÉireann) was established. Initially formed to safeguard the British promise of Home Rule, the group, influenced by key members of the IRB, soon began campaigning for full Irish independence from British rule.
Another important meeting took place at the hotel in 1914. On April 2nd the first public meeting of the Cumann na mBan (The Irishwoman’s Council) was also held. Led by Agnes O’Farrelly, this important women’s association not only supported Irish nationalism, but many members were also actively involved in the fighting during the Rising of 1916. Over the course of Easter week Wynn’s hotel caught fire and was gutted, but was reopened ten years later in 1926. Today, in the hotel’s ‘Saints and Scholars lounge’, two brass plaques commemorate the location of these two significant meetings.