In Wexford county we settled in the tiny city of Enniscorthy. Although small, there is a lot in Enniscorthy worth seeing and its size makes everything accessible by foot. We were able to enjoy the sunny days that are atypical of Ireland’s climate. Firstly, we walked from our hotel by the Slaney to Enniscorthy Castle.
Dating back to 1190, the castle has had a sundry of unique individuals pass through. The first evidence we saw of this was in the dungeon of the castle.
In a small room, that was used by modern residents as a boiler room, we saw the dwellings of the past prisoners. One of these unfortunate detainees had used his time in his prison to express himself artistically. We saw the preserved etchings of this prisoner on the walls of the dungeon.
The rest of the castle was filled with the souvenirs of the its history. Furniture from the most recent residents of the castle remained. There was also an exhibition featuring articles from the Irish Rebellion of 1798. During this time the Enniscorthy castle witnessed several battles and was even used as a prison.
From the roof of the castle we could see the site in Enniscorthy that is most associated with the rebellion. Vinegar Hill was the location of a battle between the Irish and British.
As we learned later in the National 1798 Rebellion Center, the name of the hill was the result of the improper pronunciation by the English of the Irish name Chnoc Fidoh na gCaor. We were very impressed with the exhibits in the center.
Through audio-visual re-enactments we saw a very effective portrayal of the largest rebellion in Irish history.
Once we had thoroughly surveyed the center we journeyed up to the hill itself. We climbed up the hill that over fifteen thousand soldiers had once climbed in pursuit of the Irish.
At the top, we stood on the site where over a thousand Irishmen were murdered. The British military did not spare children or women and tortured many of their victims.
Fortunately, a large group of Irishmen managed to escape toward the Wicklow mountains that could be seen from our vantage point on Vinegar Hill.