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The Galway Packet – 1859

The Irish Times 29th July, 1859 p1.

The Galway Packet Station

GALWAY, TUESDAY, 3, PM – Immediately after the conclusion of the crown business the doors of the grand jury room were opened, and your correspondent was admitted, who was the only representative of the press in attendance. The subject of the packet station and the subsidy was taken into consideration. The foreman (Sir Thomas Burke) in the chair. It was introduced by Christopher St. George, Esq., of Tyrone House, who after an able speech, which time does not admit of my reporting in full, proposed the following resolution:-

“We, the Grand Jury of the County of Galway, beg leave to express that, whilst we are steadfast in our opinion as to the inviolability of the contract entered into by the late government in respect to the establishment of a transatlantic packet station at Galway, we deem it necessary now to express in terms of the strongest disapprobation our condemnation of having referred to a committee of the House of Commons the consideration of this question which we had viewed as already determined on; and we further reprobate the formation of the committee.  We have to reiterate our previous statements as to the superiority of our claims to those of other applicants in favour of the measure, so vitally important to our local interests, and so replete with imperial advantages. We confidently expect that parliament will not only confirm the comparatively small subsidy of £78,000 in aid of the Galway packet station but will assist our exertions to obtain such loans of money as will improve our port.  We, on behalf of the county of Galway engage that, by all means at our disposal, we will advance the geographical eligibility of our bay for transatlantic communication.  We call upon the representatives of the county and of the town of Galway that they will hold as paramount to all other considerations the establishment of a transatlantic packet station at Galway, and we rely upon the exertions of the other representatives of Ireland so to act at this critical juncture that they will not suffer the interests of our common country to be overlooked.”

John Martin, Esq., of Tullyra Castle, said he had very much pleasure in seconding the resolution.

Mr. St. George said there was no precedent whatever for one government violating a solemn contract entered into by its predecessors in office.

The resolution was then signed by the foreman, on behalf of the grand jury, and it was resolved that a copy of it be transmitted to Lord Palmerston – Freeman Correspondent

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Land Law Bill – Ireland – 1895

HC Deb 02 April 1895 vol 32 cc735-817 735
THE CHIEF SECRETARY FOR IRELAND (Mr. J. MORLEY, Newcastle-upon-Tyne)(abridged)

The late Sir William Gregory. In his autobiography I find this passage. He is speaking of the sale of some portions of his ancestral estates in the county of Galway:— I may here mention that the result of this sale had a very strong influence afterwards in my political career, and rendered me a very advanced politician on the tenants’ side, on the landlord and tenant question.

Shortly after my father’s death, I visited every holding on the estate, and was struck with the results of the unflagging industry of the tenants who occupied the light stony land about Kinvara. They had by their labour, and with no allowance from the landlord, cleared large portions of their farms, and the great monuments, as they called them, of stones attested their industry. From these clear patches they had excellent barley crops, and were in prosperity. My great-uncle and father were both just men, and allowed them to enjoy the fruits of their toil for many years without raising the rent. On the occasion of my visit, when I was about to drive away, I said to these tenants, who had assembled to greet me, that I was surprised to see so much good land, and that I thought it was capable of bearing a higher rent. Of course, this called forth a general protestation, and very sad were their faces; but they soon cleared up when I said to them, ‘Were I to take one shilling out of your pockets on account of the additional value you had given to my property by your industry, I should be a robber and ashamed to look you in the face. You can go on in good heart with your work, and be assured that while I own this property, your rent shall never be raised on account of your improvement.’

Such were my intentions, and such was the confidence of those tenants that they never asked for a lease, or I should have gladly given it to them. When the sale came on I was so occupied with other matters that I quite forgot their danger. Indeed, it never crossed my mind, for I had then heard of no particular instances of rapacity on the part of new purchasers; but I very soon had a terrible account of my remissness in not securing these poor folk.

Mr.——, to whom I have referred, as soon as he was placed in possession of the lots he had purchased, on which those tenants dwelt, lost no time in dealing with them in the most remorseless fashion. The rents were raised so as to pay £5 per cent. on the borrowed capital, and a large income besides for himself. They were almost invariably doubled, and in some cases £5 was charged where £2 had been the rate of the former rent. But he killed the goose for the golden egg, the town of Kinvara was all but ruined, and the best tenants ran away. I met one in Australia, at Ballarat, and he assured me he was well off when I was his landlord, but a pauper three years after, when he emigrated. It is things of that kind that have sent thousands and tens of thousands of Irish across the sea, not only to Australia, but still more to the United States, with hatred in their hearts for the system which exposed them to these abominable cruelties, and for the Government and this Parliament which allowed such wrongs. I am all the more glad to have read that passage, because Sir William Gregory and his ancestors had none of this harsh spirit, and it shows that there were some exceptions, at all events, to Mr. Justice Keogh’s violent description of the Irish lairds as “the most heartless, thriftless, and indefensible landocracy in the world.”

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Election – 1895

Irish Examiner 12th July, 1895 p6 (abridged)

Irish Women
Members of the Irish Women Worker’s Union on the steps of Liberty Hall c. 1914 National Library of Ireland.

During the next three weeks the nation will be called upon to exercise the most momentous duty which can fall to the lot of citizens, viz., the choice of Parliamentary representatives who shall guide the destinies of the men and women of the country.
Vital interests are involved in the coming struggle, but the question of greatest importance which concerns all sections and all parties (for it deals with special needs of the larger portion of the nation) is the demand for the removal of the political disabilities of women. We trust this is the last General Election at which women will have to stand outside the pale of citizenship.
The Women’s Franchise League most strongly and earnestly appeals to all lovers of justice and freedom to use every effort during this election for the removal of the disabilities which press so heavily on the women of this nation.
Ursula M. Bright, Hon, Sec.

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A Lullaby – Francis A. Fahy – 1895

Irish Examiner 1st June, 1895 p.10

Like a bird on the bough of the brown hazel swinging. Photo: EO'D
Like a bird on the bough of the brown hazel swinging.
Photo: EO’D

Oh, to and fro on my bosom of love,
Like a bird on the bough of the brown hazel swinging;
While a husho falls from the stars up above,
And a lul-la-lo are the night-winds singing.
Sleep sthoreen bawn,
Sleep on till dawn;
Peace to my heart your sweet breath bringing.

Oh, wee-shee handies and mouth of the rose!
My share of the world in his warm nest is lying,
While husho falls as the blue eyes close,
And a lul-la-lo is the night-wind dying,
Sleep, flower of love,
Sleep cooing dove,
Softly above my heart’s glad sighing.

Allana macree, cling closer to me,
The daylight is flown and the pale stars are peeping,
While a husho falls o’er the land and the sea,
And lul-la-lo from the far hills creeping.
Sleep, sthoreen bawn.
Sleep on till dawn,
Angels their watch above you keeping.

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Mr Thomas Fahy

The Burren Wikimedia Commons
The Burren
Wikimedia Commons
NEW ZEALAND TABLET VOL XXII IS 6 – 7th June, 1895 p21

Mr Thomas Fahy, one of the oldest, best known, and most esteemed of the Irish residents at Clapham, London, died at 33 Leppoc road, the residence of his son, Mr F. A. Fahy (the popular Irish poet and humourist), on Ash Wednesday. Mr Fahy’s circle of friends extended far beyond Clapham. Indeed, in every part of London the news of the death of this kindly, genial, and most lovable of Irishmen, was heard with the deepest regret. He was born close on 80 years ago at Burren, Clare, but most of his long life was spent in Kinvara a town on an inlet of Galway Bay, famous as the home of The little Irish Colleen,” of his son’s charming and popular ballad, “The ould plaid shawl.” He was emigration agent for the district during the exodus that followed the famine of ’48, and he booked thousands for the land of the Stars and Stripes. He was the medium through which thousands of pounds reached the hands of the lrish emigrants’ relatives. His remains are interred in the Catholic cemetery at Mortlake, on the Upper Thames, and close to the remarkable tomb, in the form of a tent, of that famous Galway man, Sir Frederick Burton, the Eastern explorer and Orientalist. Kilkenny.

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An Dreoilín – 1895

An Dreoilín Wikimedia Commons
An Dreoilín
Wikimedia Commons
New Zealand Tablet 12th July, 1895 P11 (abridged)

Francis A. Fahy is a writer who seems to have struck the popular vein in his productions. Like Mr Graves, he has written a number of songs to familiar airs, and as they are all of the “catching order,” they sink deep in the fancy of the masses. In reading his songs one is struck with the peculiar domination of the national spirit in them, It is interwoven with every other sentiment of the poem and seems inseparable from his verse. Even in his songs of affection, begun in a tender strain, we hear the tread of the soldier and the jingle of his sabre.

He was born at Kinvara, County Galway on September 29, 1854, and entered the Civil Service in 1873. He has resided in London since that time, and has taken part in many Irish movements, notably the Southwark Irish Literary Club and its successor, the Irish Literary Society. At sixteen years of age he wrote a play “The Last of the O’Leary’s,” which was produced in his native town. In the same year his first printed poem appeared in the Nation. Since then he has contributed from time to time to nearly all the leading periodicals of Ireland and to many in England. Most of his writings appeared over the nom de plume of Dreoilín (the wren).