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order to appear before it on a day fixed, to answer the complaint. This direction was signed by the secretary, a broken-down carpenter. I cannot remember whether Berkery appeared before the committee or not; but in the end he received a written order from it, directing him in the name of the Land League either to vacate the farm at once or to pay to the complainant a considerable sum of money (about £200). This injunction Berkery very properly refused to obey, and the facts coming to the knowledge of the police, they insisted upon Berkery giving up the documents, and a full report of the case was made to the Irish Government. A prosecution was directed against Father Sheehy, the president, and other members of the Land League committee. On the day of the proceedings at the Kilmallock court of petty sessions, this reverend gentleman, by the violence of the language he addressed to the people in the streets, created scenes hardly conducive to respect for the law. When the case was
called, I was informed Berkery did not appear, and the Land League solicitor charged the Government with having " spirited him away." The fact was, that he had been induced, by threats on the part of the Land League, to leave the country. As he (the principal witness) was not forthcoming, the case fell through, and a scene of wild excitement followed. The law had been defeated, and this of itself was a great triumph for Father Sheehy and his colleagues. These events occurred some time before my arrival; but I shall have occasion to revert, further on, to what subsequently took place as a sequel to them.
GENERAL CONDITION OF KILMALLOCK DISTRICT — ORDINARY LAW OF ITSELF NOT STRONG ENOUGH TO RESTORE ORDER —FATHER EUGENE SHEEHY—HIS VIOLENT CONDUCT—CRITICAL STATE OF LOCALITY — REASONS FOR DECIDING TO RECOMMEND ARREST OF FATHER SHEEHY AND LAND LEAGUE COMMITTEES AT KILMALLOCK AND KILFINANE—COUNCIL IN DUBLIN—DECISION ARRIVED AT—ARRANGEMENTS FOR PRESERVING ORDER—ARREST OF FATHER SHEEHY AND OTHERS —PAINFUL SCENE—MR CLERY NOT ARRESTED—HIS WARNING —CONSPIRACIES TO MURDER—WARNING FROM UNDER SECRETARY— EXCITEMENT CONSEQUENT ON FATHER SHEEHY'S ARREST—KILFINANE — ARRANGEMENTS FOR CARRYING OUT
ARRESTS THERE—FERTILITY OF COUNTRY FATHER LEA—
ARRESTS MADE—THE CHRISTIAN PRIEST—EFFECTS OF REMOVAL OF COMMITTEE— ORGANISATION NECESSARY—GOVERNMENT SYSTEM FAULTY—NO INDIVIDUAL RESPONSIBILITY— SYSTEM IN INDIA—REINFORCEMENTS—MOUNT COOTE — ITS OCCUPATION BY TROOPS.
The country about Kilmallock is a rich pasture-land; the farms are large, and the people generally very well to do. One farmer paid no less than £800 a-year rent, and every farm was well stocked with dairy cattle. The strike against rent, however, at the time of which I
am writing (June 1881), was general. The owners and agent of most of the adjoining properties had been obliged to leave their residences and live in Dublin or elsewhere. Throughout Ireland the people were daily becoming more daring, and the collisions between the police and large hostile gatherings were of ominously frequent occurrence. The situation may thus be described. The Government existed but in name, and anarchy was triumphant. All rent was refused except upon terms dictated by the tenants. There were but twenty policemen in the town of Kilmallock (the headquarters), without any means of locomotion. These men had much difficulty in providing themselves even with food, being "boycotted." The licensed publicans refused them the use of any public conveyance, which rendered the men almost powerless to act on an emergency outside the town. Indeed, I believe had any of the men left the town, their barrack would have been sacked. The Land
League ."•'"'YPrnmPnt sat in solemn court twice a-week, and( oftener] as required. Under its direct orders every illegal act was committed. The people no more sought redress at the magistrate's court, but applied to that of the Land League for the adjustment of their disputes and the redress of their grievances, real and imaginary. The very servants were driven from the police barrack. The local agent of most of the adjoining properties, Mr Uniacke Townsend, had been hunted from his home, with his family, by those means now well known to the public. If the Land League considered that A had a better right, according to its laws, than B to any lands of which the latter was tenant in possession, it passed its order of fine, transfer, or forcible dispossession. As a result, A was carried "by armed men with blackened faces " during the night, and put upon the land, and before morning was comfortably settled in a wooden hut, erected by the "armed men with blackened faces" for his use. B naturally sought safety