William Pearse (1881-1916)
William was born on November 15th 1881, the younger brother of Patrick Pearse. After receiving his early education in Westland Row CBS, Willie decided to pursue an artistic career and studied at the Metropolitan School of Art in Dublin and also in Paris and London. His father James, an Englishman, was a well-respected sculptor and Willie obviously inherited much of his skills. Willie’s work can be seen in the Mortuary Chapel, St Andrew’s Church, Westland Row.
To a certain extent he has been overshadowed by his brother but Willie was every bit as passionate a revolutionary, teacher and language enthusiast as Patrick. In fact he taught at Saint Enda’s school on a full time basis from 1913 onwards.
Willie’s rank was as a captain in the Volunteers during the Easter Rising of 1916. Willie was stationed in the GPO, where he stood by Patrick’s side as his ADC until the surrender order came. After the Rising, Willie was taken to Richmond Barracks where he was court-martialed. Willie was executed in Kilmainham Gaol on 4 of May 1916