Nine Famous Irishmen
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 McDuffy, 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 gentlemen, to try to do better next time. And next time--sure we won't be fools to get caught."
Thereupon 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 away wild Van Dieman's land. In 1874, word reached the astounded Queen Victoria that 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 was uncovered:
John Mitchell, prominent New York politician and father of John Purroy Mitchell, Mayor of New York at the outbreak of WWI
Morris Lyene, Attorney General of Australia (succeeded by Michael Ireland)
Pat Donahue, Brigadier General, United States Army
Thomas D'Arcy McGee, Member of Parliament, Montreal
Thomas Magheer, Governor of Montana
Richard O'Gorman, Governor General of Newfoundland
Terrence McManus, Brigadier General, United States Army
Michael Ireland, Minister of Agriculture and President Council, Dominion of Canada