In the Young Irish disorders, in Ireland in 1848, the following nine men
were captured, tried, and convicted of treason against Her Majesty, the
Queen, and were sentenced to death: John Mitchell, Morris Lyene, Pat
Donahue, Thomas McGee, Charles Duffy, Thomas Meagher, Richard O’Gorman,
Terrence McManus and Michael Ireland.
Before passing sentence, the judge asked if there was anything that anyone
wished to say, Meagher, speaking for all, said:” My lord, this is our
first offense but not our last. If you will be easy with us this once, we
promise, on our word, as gentleman, to try to do better next time, and
next time – sure we won’t be fools to get caught.”
Thereapon the indignant judge sentenced them all to be hanged by the neck
until dead, and drawn and quartered. Passionate protest from all the world
forced Queen Victoria to commute the sentence to transportation for life
to far off wild Australia.
In 1874, word reached the astounded Queen Victoria that the Sir Charles
Duffy who had been elected Prime Minister of Australia was the same
Charles Duffy who had been transported 25 years before. On the Queen’s
demand, the records of the rest of the transported men were revealed and
this is what they uncovered:
THOMAS MEAGHER- Governor of Montana
TERRENCE McMANUS- Brigadier General, United States Army
PATRICK DONAHUE- Brigadier General, United States Army
RICHARD GORMAN- Governor General of Newfoundland
MORRIS LYENE- Attorney General of Australia
MICHAEL IRELAND- Succeded Lyene as Attorney General of Australia
THOMAS McGEE- Member of Parliament, Montreal, Minister of Agriculture and
President of Council Dominion of Canada.
JOHN MITCHELL- Prominent New York politician. He was the father of John
Purroy Mitchell, Mayor of New York, at the outbreak of
World War I.