Identity Statement for Elizabeth Bloxham
- Reference code: IE UCDA P31
- Title: Papers of Elizabeth Bloxham
- Dates: 1952
- Level of description: Item
- Extent: 34pp
Elizabeth 'Bessie' Bloxham was born in Claremorris, County Mayo in 1877. Her father was a member of the Royal Irish Constabulary and she was raised in a Protestant household. She qualified as a teacher and initially worked in Northern Ireland.
Bloxham begin to read and later contributed to Arthur Griffith's United Irishman. She was a suffragette, a supporter of the Irish Women's Franchise League and a member of the Gaelic League. Bloxham was a founding member of Cumann na mBan in April 1914 and was selected as a national organiser. Being a teacher she was free to travel the country setting up local branches during the holidays. She was working in Newtownards when the Easter Rising broke out.
In the summer of 1916, Bloxham was dismissed from her teaching post in Newtownards, a decision she believes was based on her outspoked nationalism. She continued working for Cumann na mBan and was a signatory on the letter addressed to the President and Houses of Congress in America asking for recognition of the Irish Republic.
Bloxham moved to Wexford where she continued teaching and upon retiring in 1944, she moved to Dublin. She died in January 1962.
Copy of Elizabeth Bloxham’s statement to the Bureau of Military History, concerning her association, as a Protestant, with the Sinn Féin movement during the struggle for independence, including her dismissal from her teaching position.
Original Bureau of Millitary History statement held by the Military Archives .