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Yet now-oh, disgrace to Ireland !-his remains ere consigned to an obscure churchyard in England, with not a stoue to mark the spot where sleeps John Philpot Curran; and eveti in the country that he loved, there is nothing, as yet, to record his name !*
THE MEMORY OF JOAN PHILPOT CURRAX."
MEETING AT KILMAINHAM.
On the 30th December of this year, a meeting took place at the Kilmainham Court Firuse, at the requisition of the government party, who were desirous of getting ap au audress to the King, George the Fourth, approving of the recent infamous persecution of his queen. The following is an account of it, abbreviated from the newspapers :
"The most strenuous cxertions were made by tne requisitionists, amongst whoin were a great number of office-holders in the law. police, revenue, corporation, &c. "A large party of police were in attendance
The first act of the sheriff indicated his bias. He ordered the police to clear away a large numbei of most respectable freeholders, and to admit only such persons as he should voint out. In a short time, however, the pressure of the crowd nullified his crders in a great measure.
“Disappointed in this move, he slopted another and a ludicrous device to admit his chosen iew. A'chair was procured on which Lord Howth was placed and raised by fo ir able-bodied policemen to a back urindow, through which his lordship obtained ingress. A similiar operation was performed on Lord Frankfort, and several thers, to the no small merriment of the spectators.
“The pr ceedings were opened amid the utmost or'er on the part of the people. Lword Hovsth and Lord Frankfort each said a few words, but they were perfectly inaudibls to the bulk of the meeting. It was theu perceived that the sheriff was Jaakin; some nomination or selection.
“JIR. O'CONNELL wished to know the nature of the proceedings going on abont the chair. He inquired whether any motion had been made, or question proposed.
• The Higu SHERIFF, at the suggestion of some person near him, asked if WW1. O'Connell was a freeholder of the county of Dublin ?
* DR. O'CONNELL (speaking with great emphasis)— I am a freeholder of this Winty. I have a hereditary property which, probably, may stand a comparison with the person who interrogates me; and I have a profession which gives me aa annual income greater than any of the personages who surround the chair are ablo w wring from the taxes.' (Loud applause.)
“ The SHERIFF then said, that he was nominating a committee to prepare an address.
" Lori) CLONCurry objected strongly to thiş irregularity. "The meeting shoull nominate'
“ The SHERIFF however, persevered, and was heard to nominate • Lord Frankfort.
It is scarcely necessary now to say that this stain is long sinco wiped out, and that pary hundsome and classical monumeat to Curran stands in Glasnevin cemetory:
"LORD CLONCURRY again objected, and would take the sense of the meeting.
« The SHERIFF refused him the opportunity, and repeated Lord Frankfort's name. The ‘noes' were in an immense majority against it. The sheriff, however, declared him selected.
“MR. J. D. MULLEN protested, and being threatened by the sheriff to be put out of the court as no freeholder, declared that he was such, and defied the sheriff to put his threat into execution.
“LORDS HOWTH and FRANKFORT, and some gentlemen with them, now produced a prepared address which, when read, appeared a very poor composition. On the question for its adoption
“MR. BURNE, K.C., rose to oppose it. He did not see, in the first place, thin necessity of making a boast of loyalty.' There had been no instances of disloyalty for a long time.
MR. COBBE (from Swords)— 'Yes, yes!' “ Several voices_Name one, name one! “MR. BURNE also called upon him to name it. “ MR COBBE—'I will, the opposition to the present address."
“After a shout of laughter which this occasioned, had subsided, Mr. Burno resumed, and argued ably against the calling of the meeting, the sheriff's conduct, and his preconcerted arrangements, &c.
“ The SHERIFF—'Mr Burne your party met as well as ours.'
“After this second interruption, the speaker was at last allowed to proceed, and conclude his protest in peace. But when, after concluding, he again rose to announce that he would move an amended and really loyal address, the sheriff declared he would not hear him further; and in spite of remonstrances from Mi. O'Connell and others, pat the question on the original address. To this there were a bundred noes for every one aye. He then proclaimed the meeting dissolved.
“MR. O'CONNELL declared that the chairman, though he might abdicate the chair, could not dissolve the meeting until they should have completed the business for which they were convened. He moved Lord Cloncurry to the chair
“ The SHERIFF said he would oppose his lordship's taking the chair.
LokD CLONCURRY (who was greatly cheered)—. The treeholders of the county 3Dublin have done me the honour to call me to the chair, and I will certainly obey their commands.' (Great cheering.)
"I most solemnly protest against the illegal and unconstitutional conduct of the sheriff this day.
it is inconsistent with every notion of law or ljberty, and I am happy to obey the call which directs me to give all the resistance in my power to proceedings so arbitrary and unconstitutional !' (Enthusiastic applause.)
“ Here the sheriff was understood to threaten to commit Lord Cloucurry, if ho persisted in keeping the chair.
“MR. O'CONNELL_Prepare your prison then! If it be large enough to contain us all, we will all accompany him there. (Loud cheering for several minates.)
“More freehoiders will accompany him there than were found to vote at the last election; nor will they regret the absence of their representatives, though they may have an opportunity of reminding them of that absence.'
“The SHERIFF, then, with great violence of tone and manner, declared that be would call in the military. (Much disapprobation.) He called upon Lori Cloncurry to withdraw. (Loud disapprobation.)
** Loud CLONCURRY _ I will not withdraw ! This is the freeholders' housebuilt with the freeholders' money. At their call I have taken the chair. a magistrate of this county ; no man shall use illegal violence in my presence. unless he have a force superior to the law. In support of the law I am ready to
perish in this chair, and nothing but force shall tear me from it.' (Enthusiastie cbeers.)
“The SHERIFF said that the meeting was an illegal meeting, and that as suck he would disperse it.
“Mr. O'CONNELL— 'The meeting is a perfectly legal meeting. Let every freeholder who values his rights, remain, and if any man be prosecuted for te maining here, let me be that man; for I have, and shall everywhere avow that I have advised, and counselled you to continue the meeting.'
“ The sheriff here withdrew.
“ The most perfect order and decorum still prevailed, and the court-house ex. hibited one of the most respectable and crowded meetings we have ever witnessed.
“MR. BURNE addressed the chair, but had not uttered many sentences, when a side-door was thrown open with a violent crash, and an officer and some soldiers rushed in. They commanded the freeholders in the most peremptory manner to withdraw. Some violence was offered to individuals, but certainly not muchi, as the privates conducted themselves with good temper, and the freeholders quietly dispersed.
* LORD CLONCURRY kept his seat. Mr. Curran placed himself by his side T'wo soldiers, bayonet in hand, ascended the bench close to Mr. Curran, who good huinouredly, but firmly, put the weapons aside. The officer standing on the table, ordered Lord Cloncurry to withdraw.
“LORD CLONCURRY replied, that he was a magistrate, presiding over a legal meeting of his majesty's subjects; that he would remain until the proceedings were regularly brought to a close, unless removed by actual force.
“The officer said he must use force, and drew or was in the act of drawing his sword, and forcu was applied to Lord Cloncurry before he left the chair.
“The freeholders assembled in immense numbers at the opposite side of the road. A chair was procured for Lord Cloncurry in the passage of a house, and the amended address was read by Mr. Burne, seconded by Mr. O'Connell, and carried with acclamation.
“The following was its substance :
"That our dutiful attachment and allegiance deserve the greater consideration, inas much as those sentiments are not diminished by the multiplied distress and aggravated wiseries of your faithful people of Ireland, since the measure of the Union."
** Deeply interested as we are in every event connected with the stability of the throne, we have felt inexpressible satisfaction at the termination of the late procecdings in the llouse of Lords;* sincerely hoping that proceedings so dangerous and unconstitutional, devor will be revived in any shape.'
"Mr. O'Connell moved that a committee be appointed to lay before the Lord Lieutenant, the outrageous and illegal conduct of the sheriff on that day.
“ He said that he felt happy in the hope, that all that was honest, acd manly, and constitutional in England, would be found in sympathy with the inhabitants of this trampled land. The people of England would now see that the Irish, however attached to liberty, could not attend a meeting convened by the sheriff, without peril to their lives. Let the people of England learn from the events of this day, the fate that is most assuredly in reserve for themselves, if they do not, while yet there is time, while yet the opportunity remains open, come forward, ore and all, to resist the machinations of a ministry, the leading personage of which is the very man who extinguished the liberties of his native land, and laid her prostrate before her or pressors, and helpless against any and every Ulegal violence !!
* Against George the Fourth's most unfor: unate queen.
* Mr. Burne was then moved to the chair, and thanks being voted, with thie warmest acclamations, to Lord Cloncurry, the meeting quietly separated."
Upon the 2nd of January, 182, a most numerons meeting, “to consider the best steps to be taken as to the outrage on Saturday at Kilmainham," was held at the Corn Exchange Rooms (then D'Arcy's Tavern), Hamilton Rowan, Esq., in the chair. and John Finlay, Fiso.. acting as secretary.
Mr. O'CONNELL considered it incumbent upon him to address the meeting at the earliest possible moment, having been one of the first of those persons who had been instrumental in conven
The gentlemen to whom he alluded, and with whom he had the honour of being associated in recommending this step, did not come to any definite conclusion as to the particular resolutions to be proposed for adoption on this occasion, but had unanimously agreed that they and the general body of the freeholders of the county of Dublin would well deserve the treatment which they had received-would well merit to be branded as the SLAVES they were supposed to be, did they remain quiescent under the outrage which was, on Saturday last, committed against their rights and persons. (Much cheering.)
It was a thing unheard of, that at a meeting convened by the high sheriff of a county, to prepare a loyal and dutiful address to his majesty, the freeholders should not have been permitted to yive expression to sentiments of loyalty, and freely pronounce their opinion upon the topics with which that address ought to deal. It was monstrous that they should have been driven, at the point of the bayonet, from under the roof of the court-house, where the meeting was legal, into the open air, where, under the existing law, it was illegal to assemble. The very law which made it so, was enacted by the ministry whose counsels this county had been called upon to approve, and constituted a part of the system of the present administration.
This law was enacted in England to restrain the free expression of opinion in that country. It was enacted under cover of the pretext that large meetings were necessarily dangerous, that they were inevitably inflammatory and tumultuous when held in the open air. But no such meetings had been held in the open air in Ireland. He (Mr. O'Connell) had attended and spoken at most of the Irish meetings. They were all held under some roof. They were peaceable, and not a shadow of excuse could be alleged for extending those laws to Ireland.
There was, however, an object in extending them to this country--the object of preserving the consistency of the existing ininistry's system in the government of Ireland. (Hear, hesir.)
Ireland should be struck at! Whether England was hit or no, it was a settled thing that Ireland should be struck at. too upright, too inviting for a blow, to allow the opportunity to slip. Like the man at a country fair, who, carrying his head crect and stately, suddenly found himself knocked down, and on asking the reason why, was answered, “Oh, your head was in the way, and invited the blow!" (Loud laughter.) So, too, thought the English minister, as he struck the blow, which he felt invited to, at unoffending Ireland ! However, she is not too fallen to risc again, she is not too prostrate to be deterred, or disenabled from making a reimperative effort for her independence, and the free exercise of the inalienable rights of the people ! (Much cheering.)
The brand has entered your souls, and you deserve to be branded and to be enthralled for ever, if you do not exert your energies to justify yourselves, and vindicate your characters. The voice and the sentiments which went for that Kilmainham have thrillal through every heart in the country. They have spoken, trumpet-tongued, the feelings of independence which peats in every Irish bosom, and I hope they will be re-echoed throughout every part of Ireland ! (Loud applause.) Oh!.my friends, a glorious opportunity has burst upon you ! Avail yourselves of it, and prove to the inhabitants of England, that you
do not yield to them in the love of constitutional liberty! That you will struggle to vindicate with them, and restore again in its pristine brightness and purity, constitutional liberty! (Loud cheering.)
Whatever redress we may seek for the grievances which we have suffered and so patiently endured, let it be sought for only through the constitutional channel. It is, therefore, that I move, in the spirit of the constitution under which we live, and for which we would die
“ That a committee of fifteen be appointed to consider of the best method of demanding redress for the outrage committed on the freeholders, at Kilmainham, on Saturday last."
This motion, to which Mr. Finlay and some other gentreman spoke, being about to be put, Mr. M'Donnell suggested a deputation to the secretary at the Castle, Mr. Granto
Mr. O'Connell said he had ever had the highest respect for Mr. Grant, but did not approve of the deputation proposed, as, without it, there was a satisfactory test by which to try the sentiments and disposition of the administration of the country.
If the government with which Mr. Grant was connected should, by that day week, suspend the public officer who had committed