Thursday, 28 May 2009

"History of the Rebellion in Ireland" by James Gordon

This history of the Irish Rebellion of 1798 was written by the Rev. James Gordon, the Rector of Killegny in Wexford in 1801.
A full text version can be found on Google books.
The family of Jeremiah Fitzhenry is mentioned as being the saviours of the family of Rev. Samuel Francis
A labouring peasant, who took the title of captain Gormaghan, went one Sunday morning into the house of the Rev. Samuel Francis, rector of Killegny, and after threatening to cut off the arm of a son of Mr. Francis, because he could not dextrously sign his forehead with a cross in the Romanist manner, drove out the whole family before him to the Romist chapel declaring that no religion, except that alone which God permitted, must any longer be professed. The Fitzhenry family, who formed part of the congregation, were at this scene evidently affected with deep concern, which they endeavoured to conceal from the unfeeling crowd. They advised in whispers the distressed family to endeavour to hide their grief from the fanatic mob ; and administered such comfort as the fear of offending the ignorant bigots permitted.
Jeremiah Fitzhenry, married to John Colclough's sister, was of the ancient family of the Fitzhenrys in the county of Wexford : John Colclough, of a family high respectable, who had often represented the county, was well educated, and in good circumstances, disgraced himself by yielding to the influence of fanaticism.
Also in this book are the Atkin family (forebears of our correspondent Wendy Rutter) and in particular Hercules Atkin, whose unusual name stood out in amongst the list of the names (and their home parish) of Protestant prisoners in Wexford that were condemned to death by the Catholic rebels:
6. Atkin, Samuel, Wexford
7. Atkin, John, Wexford
8. Atkin, George, Wexford
9. Atkin, Samuel, Castle Ellis
10. Atkin, Samuel, Castle Ellis
11 Atkin, Hercules, Castle Ellis
12. Atkin, Christopher, Castle Ellis
13. Atkin, James, Edermine
14. Atkin, William, Edermine
15. Atkin, Robert, Wexford
16. Atkin, William, Ardcolme
17. Atkin, William, Edermine
18. Atkin, William, Castle Ellis
19. Atkin, Francis, Wexford

James Gordon's book referenced "Memoirs of the Different Rebellions in Ireland by Sir Richard Musgrave (pub. 1802). On page 447, a John Fitzhenry is listed amongst those executed in Wexford for murder and rebellion after the retaking of the town by the Royal Army.

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