Located on Denny Street in the heart of Tralee Town, the Pikeman Statue is a well known landmark in the town. Known by the locals as The Croppy Boy, the statue is a symbol of the patriotic fighting spirit of the 1798 Rebellion. The statue is of a full length male figure atop a high limestone plinth, with a purposeful expression striding forward, pike in hand, ready to fight for freedom. The tribute panels on the plinth underneath also recognises and commemorates the risings of 1803, 1848 and 1867.
The history of the statue reveals a chequered past. Originally there was a statue commissioned in 1901 and the foundation stone was unveiled at the site in 1902 by Maud Gonne McBride. This original statue remained in place until it was destroyed by the Black and Tans in 1921. Six years later a local committee felt it was time for a replacement and commissioned local sculptor, Jerome Connor. Many years of delays and a court case necessitated a new sculptor and renowned Dublin sculptor Albert Power was approached. His version of the statue was unveiled in 1939 by Maud Gonne McBride where it still stands.
Take some time to visit the Kerry County Museum in the Ashe Memorial Hall just down the street. This fascinating venue highlights the rich heritage of County Kerry.