The Fenian ProsecutionsThe Illustrated London News, vol. 47, no. 1339, p. 386.
October 21, 1865
Seven more Fenians were brought before the magistrate at Dublin yesterday week, and were committed for trial. The prisoners were mostly from Clonmel and its neighbourhood, and a new informer appeared on the scene--a man named Power, who had been among the number of the arrested, and afterwards offered to give evidence.
Some prisoners brought up for examination at Cork and Queenstown were also committed for trial.
On Saturday last six additional prisoners were brought up before Mr. Stronge, at Dublin, charged with being implicated in the Fenian conspiracy--viz., Maurice J. Magrath, described as being a captain in the 52nd Illinois Volunteers; Mortimer Moynahan, clerk in the Irish People office; Joseph Deniffe, tailor; James O'Connor, James Ryan, and Daniel F. Gleeson, bricklayers. Deniffe was identified as having received £500 cash for a bill of exchange at the European Bank in College-green, drawn in his favour on Messrs. Rothschild, of London, by their New York agent. In his lodgings were found a drill-book, two revolvers, a bowie knife, and a photograph of General Corcoran. At the lodgings of Maurice J. Magrath were found his commission as Captain in the American army and other documents. A search having been instituted in the house occupied by James Ryan, James O'Connor, and Daniel F. Gleeson, there wore discovered concealed in a chimney two bayonets, and in another part of the dwelling was found a drill-book. Mr. Stronge committed Magrath, Moynahan, and Deniffe for trial; and, as to the other three prisoners, on whose part an application to admit them to bail was made, he said there was a primâ facie case against them, though not a strong one, and he remanded them for the present, pending an application to the Attorney-General to have them allowed to stand out on bail.
On Saturday, the prisoners charged with Fenianism in Queenstown, Mr. O'Driscoll, the Town Councillor, whose "tall talking," it was said, alone got him into trouble; Mr. J. Morony, of Limerick; John Murray, and Thomas Shannon, were brought up before the magistrates on remand. The three latter were allowed at liberty on entering into their own recognisances; and Mr. O'Driscoll on giving bail, himself in £100 and two sureties in £50 each, all to come up when called upon.
Four young men were arrested in Carrick-on-Suir yesterday week, charged with illegal marching, and others with inciting the crowd to attempt a rescue. They were remanded.
Further arrests have been made in Clare, Limerick, and other counties.
On Friday evening the gun-boat Nightingale stopped the United Kingdom, a large vessel trading between Glasgow and New York, in Lough Swilly, and examined the passengers and their luggage. Fenian papers were found with one person only, a lady, who was therefore accompanied by the police to Glasgow.
A poster appeared on Sunday in a prominent place on one of the Dublin bridges, headed "The Cholera!" and attracted some attention. It ran:--"As the cholera--that godsend to those amiable gentlemen the rulers and crowned heads who wish to get rid in a quiet way of the surplus, or uneasy, or dangerous portions of their subjects--is now close upon us, it behoves Irish Nationalists to be extremely watchful. The English Government, no doubt, chuckles at the idea of its effect in this country, presuming that it will confine itself almost exclusively to the lower orders, or, in other words, to those presumptuous shopmen, tailors, and blacksmiths, who would set up a Government on the model of the grand American Republic." "Fenians," it adds, "will be hunted up in the field and the workshop, the barracks and the poorhouse, and made away with on the shortest notice, unless this Government-assisted plague be counteracted by burning plenty of gunpowder and a few towns or cities to clear the atmosphere, and banishing those idle, aristocratic rascals, and those respectable scoundrels who stink in the nostrils of the honest, industrious, and patriotic, or national class of the Irish people."
A statement is current in Dublin, and generally believed, that two sums of £1000 in gold have arrived from America, brought by hand for the purposes of the defence of the Fenian conspirators. Messrs. Butt, Dowse, and Sidney, who are among the leading counsel at the Irish bar, have already been retained by the prisoners against whom the major charge is preferred.
Two men were brought before the Dublin magistrates on Monday for using seditious language in the streets. One swore at the police, declaring "he was an honest Fenian, had seven revolvers, and would blow their brains out;" another addressed a crowd, and said "We will have a fine rebellion, and we are the boys will make them jump." Neither was under the influence of liquor. They were remanded.
The last of the Dublin Fenian cases were disposed of on Wednesday. George Hopper was sent for trial on evidence connecting him with the Irish People, and also with the reciept [sic] of money from America. He denied being a Fenian, and alleged that his connection with the Irish People arose out of friendship for those conducting it, and from their trade dealings with him. Wrinn, a fire-brigade man, accused of drilling, and James O'Connell O'Callagan, said to have enlisted many members, were also sent for trial.
A meeting of the National Association took place on Wednesday night. The Bishops of Dublin and Cashel spoke hopefully concerning the intention of the Government in respect of education, and of the Protestant Church. The Bishops both denounced the Fenian conspiracy.