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The Felon's Track History Of The Attempted Outbreak In Ireland, Embracing The Leading Events In The Irish Struggle From The Year 1843 To The Close Of 1848   By: (1805-1863)

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[Illustration: Michael Doheny]

THE FELON'S TRACK

OR

HISTORY OF THE ATTEMPTED OUTBREAK

IN

IRELAND

Embracing the Leading Events in the Irish Struggle from the year 1843 to the close of 1848

BY

MICHAEL DOHENY

Author of "The American Revolution."

Hurrah for the mountain side! Hurrah for the bivouac! Hurrah for the heaving tide! If rocking the Felon's Track!

ORIGINAL EDITION

WITH D'ARCY M'GEE'S NARRATIVE OF 1848, A PREFACE, SOME ACCOUNT OF THE AUTHOR'S CONTEMPORARIES, AN INDEX, AND ILLUSTRATIONS

DUBLIN

M.H. GILL & SON, LTD.

1920

Printed and Bound in Ireland by M.H. Gill & Son, Ltd. 50 Upper O'Connell Street Dublin

First Edition 1914 Second Impression 1916 Third Impression 1918 Fourth Impression 1920

[Illustration: General Shields]

Dedication.

TO

GENERAL JAMES SHIELDS

UNITED STATES SENATOR, ETC.

DEAR SIR,

In dedicating to you this narrative, I have been influenced by one consideration only. I have no title to your friendship. I cannot claim the most remote affinity with your career in arms. There is nothing connected with this sad fragment of history, either in fact or hope, to suggest any association with your name or achievements. But as my main object is to show that Ireland's failure was not owing to native recreancy or cowardice, I feel satisfied that of all living men, your position and character will best sustain the sole aim of my present labour and ambition.

In past history, Ireland holds a high place; but her laurels were won on foreign fields, and the jealous literary ambition which raised adequate monuments to these stormy times denied to her swords the distinction they vindicated for themselves in the hour of combat. The most brilliant, unscrupulous and daring historian of France degraded the niggard praise he accorded them by making it the medium of a false and contemptible sneer. "The Irish soldier," says Voltaire, "fights bravely everywhere but in his own country."

Without pausing here to vindicate that country from such ungrateful slander, it is enough to say that you were not placed in the same unhappy position as the illustrious exiles from the last Irish army soldiers of fortune in the service of a foreign prince. You were a citizen of this free Republic, and a volunteer in its ranks; it was your country, and you and your compatriots who followed the same standard did no dishonour to those who were bravest among the brave on the best debated fields in Europe.

In the wreck of every hope, all who yet cherish the ambition of realising for Ireland an independent destiny, point to your career as an encouraging augury, if not a complete justification for not despairing of their country. It is because I am among those that I have claimed the honour of inscribing your name on the first page of this, my latest labour in her cause.

I remain, dear Sir,

Very respectfully and sincerely yours,

MICHAEL DOHENY.

New York, Sept. 20, 1849.

PREFACE

The Irish Confederation still awaits its historian. Three of its leaders have left narratives of its brief and momentous career, but, of the three, Doheny alone participated in the Insurrection that dug the political grave of Young Ireland. In "The Felon's Track," written hot on his escape from the stricken land, he tells the story vividly and passionately. It has morals deducible for all manner of Irishmen, and one for those English statesmen who comfort themselves with the illusion that Irish Nationalism, like Jacobitism, is a platonic sentiment. The man who, roused from his bed at midnight by tapping fingers on his window and a voice whispering that insurrection was afoot, rose and rode away in the darkness to join himself to its desperate fortunes was no young man ardent for adventure. Michael Doheny, when he left his home and his career to engage in the fatal enterprise, was a sober middle aged barrister, a man of weight and fortune into which he had built himself by the hard toil of twenty years... Continue reading book >>




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