Tuesday 28 January 2020

New York Times declares 1916 Easter Rising a 'milestone in foreign reporting'

Today's front page of the New York Times
Today's front page of the New York Times
Geraldine Gittens

Geraldine Gittens

Though the Easter Rising lasted only five days on this tiny island of Ireland, it was a landmark rebellion which didn't only attract much news coverage in Ireland.

It generated extensive coverage across the Atlantic too, and was the subject of more than 50 articles, including front page coverage, in The New York Times spanning more than two weeks.

Today, an article in the paper says the rising wasn’t just an important moment in Ireland, but it was pivotal for Irish America and the newpaper itself.

Two years after the Rising, the paper won the first-ever Pulitzer Prize for Public Service because of its comprehensive reporting from Europe.

Though communication links were severed between Dublin and London, American reporters still battled on and scrambled for the facts to deliver the news to the growing numbers of Irish Americans over there, many of whom were fervent supporters of Irish Independence.

Robert Schmuhl, a professor at the University of Notre Dame, says it was a difficult task for reporters who were forced to base their reports on government statements, interviews with travellers who had recently returned from Dublin, and anti-rebel Irish politicians in Britain.

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