29 April 2006

Fenian Brotherhood Commemoration


Press Release

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usYou are invited to attend a commemoration in honour of the founder of the Fenian Brotherhood, John O’Mahony, which will take place on the 28th May 2006 at 2pm by his grave in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin.

Click photo to view - image from >>here

The commemoration is organised to coincide with the 130th anniversary of the first Fenian Raids on Canada in which several Irish patriots died for the cause of Irish freedom. It will also recall all the members of the Fenian Brotherhood, Irish Republican Brotherhood and Clan na nGael who died in the many actions in Ireland and England in their fight against English Crown Forces. The main speaker of the day will be Tommy McKearney, a former IRA Hunger-striker who will give an oration on the brutal prison conditions that Fenians had to endure under English rule. Several noted Fenian leaders died from the severity of the conditions imposed, while others were murdered in their cells after long incarcerations. Amongst those killed were the famous Edward Duffy, the young Fenian martyr James Cody, William Meagher, Richard J. Stowell along with Fenian commanders John Lynch and Brian Dillion from Cork, to mention a few. The commemoration will also remembers Fenians such as Captain Mackey as well as his brother and also John Fleming who died trying to blow up London Bridge, along with Stephen O’Donoghue and Thomas Farrell who died fighting near Tallagh during the Fenian Rising. John O’Mahony who had taken part in the 1848 Rising along with John Mitchel and James Stephens, was exiled first to France and then to the US. He founded the Fenian Brotherhood in 1860 with the object of freeing Ireland; naming it after the army of the great heroic cycle of Finn mac Cumhaill and the Fianna. He became a Colonel in the 69th Regiment during the American Civil War and during that period expanded the Fenian Brotherhood in the US to over a 100,000 men. With the failure of the Irish Republican Brotherhood to rise in 1865, O’Mahony helped organise the first Fenian invasion into Canada in an attempt to provoke the English into war with the US. He eventually died the following year in 1897 and his body was returned home to Ireland to be buried in Glasnevin. While the most famous Fenians of the period were the Manchester martyrs, whose song ‘God Save Ireland’ was the Irish national anthem till the writing of Amhran na bhFíann, there were hundreds of other Fenians such as Thomas Clarke, Charles J. Kickham, O’Donavan Rossa etc, who were the inspirational force that kept the Fenian spirit alive for another generation, eventually helping to inspire the 1916 rising. A booklet of 33 rare Fenian poems/ballads, written by martyrs such as Brian Dillion, Charles J. Kickham and O’Donavan Rossa is available to purchase as part of the fundraising for the commemoration and can be attained for €5. Look forward to seeing you there on the day.

Organised by Craobh Gál Gréine
Irish Cultural Society


Great to see this being organised. Many of the Fenian martyrs are forgotten about in Irish history. Without the Fenians we would never have had the 1916 Rising.
While commemorating the Fenians is most praiseworthy, this article is not quite correct. James Cody was beaten up by the police, but was not a martyr like Brian Dillon or Edward Duffy. Cody was transported to Australia, where he enjoyed a successful career (while staying a Fenian).
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