The Liberty Tree

Liberty Tree, County Carlow

The Liberty Tree in Carlow is an impressive fountain off Hanover Street in the town center.

What`s more, it is a commemorative sculpture. That was commissioned by Carlow Local Authorities to mark the Bicentenary of the 1798 Rebellion.

Therefore, the sculpture is the work of Dublin-born and internationally renowned sculptor John Behan. Who had worked as an engineer in the Carlow Sugar factory at an earlier point in his career.

The sculpture honors the more than 640 rebels who were massacred on 25th May 1798. In the Battle of Carlow and who are buried in the Croppies Grave in Graiguecullen.

Besides, it is made of bronze and is set on a circular base with a fountain. Moreover, the sculpture features a number of macabre skeletons arranged around the tree-shaped outline.

The Battle of Carlow took place in Carlow town, Ireland on 25 May 1798.

When Carlow rebels rose in support of the 1798 rebellion which had begun the day before in County Kildare. So, the United Irishmen organization in Carlow was led by a young brogue-maker named Mick Heydon. They had assembled on the night of the 24th and set off at dawn to attack the county town. Picking up more volunteers along the way, their numbers swelled to around 1,200 they marched completely unopposed.

An estimated 500 rebels and civilians were killed in the streets of the town. With no reported losses to the military. Another 150 were executed in the repression over the following ten days. Also, the memorial, where remains of many of those who perished that day were flung into a “Croppy Hole” (mass grave) is located in Graiguecullen.

Therefore, today Liberty Tree is a prominent and well-known landmark in the center of Carlow town. What`s more, every year, the ceremony of turning on the Christmas Lights in Carlow takes place here.



Blogger. Volunteer. Enthusiast of photography, nature, architecture, and cultural events. Since 2014 living in County Carlow in Ireland.

One thought on “The Liberty Tree”

  1. Wonderful blog site and superb photography.
    You bring a fresh outlook and superb skill with you Malgorzata.
    Carlow must be so proud to have you ! Well done.. Ar Fheabhais 🙂

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