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determined to renounce it previously to the insurrection. This was prevented by unfortueate circumstances. He was imprisoned in Wexford; and, at the evacuation of that town by the royal army, would have been massacred in the jail by some cowardly soldiers, if their design had not been frustrated by the courage and conduct of the jailor, Joseph Gladwin, a man of generous fortitude and humanity, who advised him to attempt, in conjunction with himself, an escape to Duncannon, to the protection of the general commanding that post. The fear of assassination by disorderly troops operated, with other incidents, unhappily to frustrate this salutary counsel, On the surrendry of Wexford, he retired to his mansion of Bargy Castle, under confrr dence of lord Kingsborough's capitulation; but, on intelligence of its failure, he fled to a cave in the Saltee islands, where John Henry Coklough, from similar motives, had in vain taken refuge before; The estates of Grogan and Harvey were afterwards confiscated by an act of the Irisb parliament, though the court-martial, which condemned them, was irre» gular, as its members were unsworn.
Many protestants lamented the fate of Colclough, a ,catholic of the most liberal sentiments and active benevolence. Conspicuous for courage and hu^ manity were two other catholics, Esmond Kyan and John Kelly. The head of the latter, who had led the rebel eolumn into Ross, was treated after execution with an indignity highly dishonorable to the actors, As these had been leaders, their humane G g 3 actJYty
activity in the saying of lives to loyalists could only i be pleaded in their favour; but no such plea would then, or long after be admitted. Innocence itself was no competent protection. False witnesses were not unattainable. To be accused was to be presumed guilty. The man selected as a victim was, like a hunted roe, from a system of terror, forsaken by all; nor was time always allowed for witnesses to come forward in his defence, if they dared to appear. Such seems to have been the case with John Redmond, a priest who was hanged atGorey. He is said to have given three hundred guineas in charge to an officer of rank, bequeathed verbally to his brother in case of his death. If he had been acquitted, the money might have been reclaimed. If any innocent person thus fell a victim, sycophants would afterwards torture their invention to justify the sentence; and in this they were supported by terrorism. In some places such proceedings were checked by officers of true military spirit, as at Wexford by general Hunter, at Enniscorthy by general Grose, and Ross by general Gascoyne. The troops of the last, chiefly the. first and Coldstream regiments of guards, displayed a conduct very uncommon in those times, and highly honourable to the character pf soldiers. Fate of Of the Gentlemen implicated in the united con
spiracy some found means to extricate themselves by fortunate circumstances, or by becoming informers, or by the affectation of a flaming zeal for loyalty, which they too frequently displayed by outrages on
men men genuinely loyal, the lovers of the existing con- Chap. stitution and of equal justice. Others fouodextri-v , ' > cation utterly impossible. This may be instanced in the fate of Anthony Perry, a protestant of a good estate, a well-informed understanding, agreeable manners, and an excellent private character. When he was renouncing his engagements, he was arrested and imprisoned at Gorey. To atone for his error he gave all the information in his power useful to government, yet was treated with the utmost harshness and indignity. Among other a6ls of cruelty, Thomas Honam, a serjeant of the North Cork militia, nick-named Tom the Devil from his habitual violence, cut away all his hair quite close to the head, and then burned all the roots of it with a candle. He was in the utmost danger, together with sixty other prisoners, of being massacred in the market-house, on the twenty-eighth of May, when ten were shot in the street; but was liberated by captain Hawtrey White, a brave yeoman officer, and a humane and active magistrate. Pursued to his house, whither he had retired to live in peace, by some yeomen, who plundered his effects and sought his life, he fled in the disguise of a beggar to the rebel host, the only refuge. To prevent a6ts of cruelty his exertions were perpetual, Separating at length from his associates, after their repulse at Hacketstown, he at I tempted an escape to the north, but was taken and hanged at Edenderry in the King's county.
Bill of amnesty
Chap. To prevent, as far as in his power, the further
effusion of blood, the new viceroy issued a proclamation dated the twenty-ninth of June, and inserted 1798, in the Dublin Gazette on the third of July, authorizing his Majesty's generals to give protection to such insurgents, as being simply guilty of rebellion, should surrender their arms, abjure all unlawful engagements, and take the oath of allegiance to the king. To give the full sanction of law to a measure dictated by justice and policy, a message was delivered to the house of commons on the seventeenth of July, signifying his Majesty's pleasure to that effect; and an act of amnesty was accordingly passed in favour of all engaged in the rebellion, who had not been leaders; who had not committed manslaughter except in the heat of battle; and who should comply with the conditions mentioned above: but from the benefit of this were excluded James Napper Tandy, and about thirty more, mostly fugitives in France. Capituia- Partly through counsellor Dobbs, a member of parliament, the surviving chief leaders were admitted to a capitulation by government. The contract, signed by seventy-three persons, purported that, they should give all the information in their power of the transactions of United Irishmen both internal and with foreign states, without implicating any person whatsoever by name or description; that they should emigrate to some country particularized by mutual agreement; and that they should give security for their not passing into the territories of any
tion of leaders. 1798.
state at war with Great Britain, and for their not Chap.
T 1 1 • t 1 • • * XLV
returmng to Ireland without the permission of go-^ L„y.,,< vernment. Oliver Bond, though under sentence of death, was included in this capitulation; but he died of an apoplexy in prison. Several principals of the Union, particularly O'Connor, Emmetti > Nac-Nevin, and Samuel Nelson, gave details on oath, in their examinations before the secret committees of both houses of parliament, in whose reports, published by authority of government, is contained a mass of information concerning the conspiracy. Whatever were the original terms of the contract, or by whatever subsequent events the contractors were influenced or affected, fifteen principal conspirators were detained in prison during the continuance of the war with France.
- In a pamphlet, styled a letter from Arthur 0'Con-0,Connor)i nor to lord Castlereagh, dated from prison, Januarypamphktthe fourth, 1799, that minister is direcUy charged with a violation of the contra6l. One of the articles of accusation is, that the information, given by the prisoners of state, was garbled to serve the purposes of the ministry; and particularly, that of a hundred pages, delivered by O'Connor himself, only one was published in the reports of the secret committees. This publication, not otherwise than clandestinely sold and circulated, was considered as suppressed by government. Though the charges are strong, no reply has appeared; but from the humanity of this lord I am inclined to suppose some justifiable motives of expediency in his favour. The 2 honour,