This letter is from Sinéad deValera (1878-1975) to her mother Margaret Flanagan (née Byrne). The letter was written while Éamon deValera (1882-1975) was in prison in Dartmoor in England. Sinéad writes to tell her mother that 'Ed' (Éamon) has been imprisoned in Dartmoor and not to be troubled by events. She outlines the prison's correspondence and visitation regime, adding that , even though letters are censored, Ed prefers them, as visits are closely supervised and unsatisfactory. She encloses a letter from him to her mother and assures her again of his good health. Sinéad expresses the opinion that it was American influence (Éamon de Valera had been born in America) that lead to her husband's sentence being commuted from death to penal servitude for life.
Sinéad de Valera (née O'Flanagan), author and teacher, was the wife of Éamon de Valera. After the Rising, Sinéad was pregnant and without an income while her husband was in prison, and was forced to return to the family home in Phibsboro to care for her invalid sister and mother. Throughout much of the ensuing political upheaval she saw little of her husband, who was either imprisoned or on the run.
University College Dublin, Archives
De Valera Papers, P150/172/1
Sinéad de Valera.
"Letter from Sinéad de Valera to Margaret Flanagan, 24 July 1916". Letters of 1916
. Schreibman, Susan, Ed. Maynooth University: 2016. Website.
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