won't can't give the whole history of this historic site, as I couldn't really do it respectful justice. The Gaol is incredibly significant because it has seen Ireland through good times and bad, and has served different functions throughout its own long history.
We noticed right away, and our tour guide (no free wandering in this dangerous old hulk) pointed out, the general exposure in the building. Windows were barred, but had no glasswork. Cells and cell blocks were open to the cold, wind, and rain of Ireland. This kept the air fresh with all the humanity crammed inside, but was neither comfortable nor healthy for those living and working here.
|The Grand Cell Block, East Wing|
The illuminated tour and the museum exhibits helped answer some of our many questions about the recent history in Ireland- but were afraid to ask. It is still a bit daunting to keep it all straight, but we are trying. Again, I'll choose not to simplify the history of the people here in my own clumsy way. Look it up sometime, it's interesting.
As a place to visit, Kilmainham Gaol is highly recommended. The tour is informative and moving, although much of the building speaks for itself. Admission is low and value is high- see it while you are here.