Kilmainham Gaol text Collection title

Roddy Connolly

Biography

The son of James Connolly, Roderick Connolly was 15 years old when he served as aide-de-camp to his father and Patrick Pearse during the Easter Rising. Initially based in the GPO, he was later dispatched to Liberty Hall, where he was briefly interned after the Rising before being released to his family. After returning to his education in Belfast, he joined the Socialist Party of Ireland in 1917 and later founded the Communist Party of Ireland (CPI) in 1921. The CPI opposed the Anglo-Irish Treaty and briefly combined with the Irish Citizen’s Army to take part in the early stages of the Civil War, but soon removed itself from the conflict. Connolly went on to join and found a number of left-wing movements, including James Larkin’s Irish Worker League, and the Workers’ Party of Ireland, before joining the Labour Party, whom he represented as a TD for Louth between 1943-44 and 1948-51. He later served as chairman of the party in the 1970s and retired from politics after a brief period in the Seanad.

 

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