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O'CONNOR TO THE ENGLISH PEOPLE . <• Though Ireland is my country , the world is my ^ public . "—F . OCosaor * « Tf e mak « Feargus O'Connor a present to the Engg £ Badicali—BmiA CComeO . fO THB BLISTERED HANDS , THE FUSTIAN JACKETS , AND UNSHORN CHINS , Mi Political Childrek , —It is now nearly nine months since the palsied hand of tyranny removed me hciii you ; it is almost seven since ire have h&d inter-( pnrse ' eTenty letter . How glad I am oneemoreto pom out my feeling * into ears -where they are sure 1 to god s -welcome ; into hearts from which they are certsinof a response .
TMi letter will be long , bat yet it will be read or Bstened to by every Chartist in the land . It will be lone because I mean to ran orer the whole period of om acquaintance , which hai now stretched over a space of eight years , wanting only twenty days . During those eight years no man In any age or country ever haa been *) much before the public . I hare in that time attended more public meetings , and at more places , gun aijy man wfeolires , or erer did lire , erer attended tfjrougnout the whole of life . How I bare acquitted myself in the several situations which -UDder God I vjys called upon to fill , this narratiTe shall truly sketch —you shall say -whether the picture has boen faithfully drawn or oTer-painted , and according to your judgment , you will decide whether or not I am entitled to lie only fafour I hsfe tret asked of the working
g&sses . At starting ; let me remind yon , that the eight years te which my remaxii refer is a period which has been more fruitful in grants than any fifty years comprised within the time from the Rerohrtion ot 16 S 8 ; it was a time , in truth , to try men ' s soala , I begin . On ths 4 th « f February , 1833 , took my goi u an Irish Member in the House of Commons . I jroBght with me the strongest testimonials of fitness ^ d confidence from my natire county by which any pnblie man has erer been honoured . I rescued the Ingest , most aristocratic and priest-ridden county in the
United Kingdom , from the united grasp of Whig and lory , who bad alternately divided its representation to centuries . I sot only did that , but I so roused the jponty , city , and four boroughs , as to return wren upealers , which was then the test of fitness , learing mly the hell-bom town of Banden in the hands of the lories , I brought in with me , for the county , a person vtoBy unknown to the electors . I nerer asked a man to rote for me , to propose me , or to second ma I ggnt so meney on the election . Mr . O * Connell said at a tfmer , atDr , Baldwin ' s house , in October , 1832 : "Well , jtr , O'Connor , if you open this county you will have
flcne more than all the agitattrs put together for the h » t forty years , bat the Aristocracy is too gttoag tot you "; however , the Tery attempt will do great good . " I mention this fact more far the date th * " lor any Talne which I attach to the pinion ; obserre October , 2832 . That was the first time I erer opened my lips to , or sat in company with , Hi . O'ConneH , and then . I had the county secured . Bear in mind , for reasons which I shall presently explain , that I nerer opened my lips to , or sat in company with Mr . CGonnell , until October , 1832 . He was then m Cork ; and although it was his custom to rouse the
repeal electoa eTery where else , and though he was at the gpiyM of Cork at that time ( the assizes were adjourned to October , in consequence of the cholera npon -that Tear ; and for the whole period , yet he addressed n * meetfcg , and took no part in what he called a forlorn hope . Well , I beat the most powerful families of "Whig and Tory unitedly . The present Earl of King-* oa , then too Hon . Robert King , formerly rspresentatre of the coanty , and who roted for the Reform Bill , aid for erery reform , and whese family had dirided file spoils far time out of mind , was the Whig candidate ; Lord Bernard , Mr . Beecher , and Mr . Morris ,
were the Tory candidate * ; and I was the people ' s can * didate . I dragged all the titled liberal dubs and meeiatioss through the mire in spite of them . I elee teified the county with the non-electors , and after an cnparaQeled struggle of fire days , I was sent to the House of Conunoni by a majority of 812 . I opened the Ceonty , the City , Hallow , Ktnsale , and ToughalL and book Sandon by myself ; and the whole cost a mere nothing . This was considered as a political earthquake . t came to England with all the prejudices rf an Irishman , I looked upon T ^ ngH « h
Protestant , and Irish Orangeman , as terms quite synonymous , ant laid at Britain ' s door eTery grievance d which Ireland complained . The House of Commons I thought , as far at regarded Ireland , might be taken MS fair specimen of English feeling towards the land of my birth ; and , in consequence , I hated , abhorred , « d detested the rery name of England aad ererything foglifJi , Resolved , howerer , to confirm my hatred , or dispel the mist , I determined to think for myself;—Ban ' s greatest crime ; that is , if , after thought , be tfwcM act for himself . With this -new I attended
pabhe dinners and public meetings , and , above all , I attended the sober man '« Parliament from twelTe to t £ ree , who , the people ' s petitions were presented . From these amices I soon learned that St . Stephens was sot England , and that the House of Commons was sot the House of the peeple . My prejudices began to weaken ; my hatred was on the wane ; when the cure of ignorance was completed by the noble stand made , hastily , and of themselves , by the ^ ng Ti «^ Mid Scotch people , against the Coercion SilL
In passing , let me tell you , that I prophesied the Coercion Bill a year and a quarter before it was introduced , for proof « f which , I refer -the leader to the Cork Southern Reporter Ot the 6 th of December , 1831 , where , in a speech of mine , delivered at a Reform meeting in the Coctrt loose , will be found the following prophetic words : — " I support Reform for England upon principle ; but in Ireland I tell you that it will be the Tery worst measure erer passed , if not followed by a Repeal < & the Union . Because , the very first act of the Reformed Parliament win be to pass some gagging Bill , to ¦ mother the expression of public opinion in Ireland 111 '' Eas prophecy was fulfilled .
I shall now take a review o ? my conduct during the tat Parliament in which I sat , and which comprised fee Sessions of 1833 and 1834 . When my eyes became opened , I became an universal Member , yet not forgetting Ireland . Though Ireland was Hiy country , the world ! looked upon as my Republic . In those Sessions I became popular with the English and Scotch people ; they sent me their petitions . I presented and supported more petitions t >?* n any rn « p in the House . I Bt with the Speaker , and rose with the House . / tmxr * as absent
What were the questions , tnd how did I vote ? I tnced O'Connell to bring Repeal from under his bushel I opposed his tithe instalment scheme of moving ft » people pay 13 s . in the pound to the parsons , and Ita . in the pound to the landlord . I voted against trery clause of the Irish Coercion BilL I moved the injection of , and Toted against eTery clause , of the B &gated Coercion BIIL O'Connell opposed me , and « pported it aO . I roted against the fixed duty on •» being substituted for the more qtysTfr ^ restricts . In fact , I opposed a repeal of the Corn **** , unaccompanied by reduction of taxation ,
* fi other measures which would give to the fe * > instead of to the high , the benefit of the *» je . I Toted against the Ballot : for the same * srau I would do so again sow . I voted against « wy single clause of the English Poor Law Amend-• ttt-Act , as it la called ; aad I had the satisfaction 4 xeceirtng a letter from Mr . Cobbett , which was Visaed in the Try * ^ aw , saying , tta < " ifdlBitlrUk ** fers , aiBiafi ihemadmm Liberal , had ttooi by hiwtmt 1 , he wmld hmoe defeaUd flu memmrt . " I voted Stiast every giant ef money . I voted for the expul-** of the Bishops from the House of Lords . I fc * ght every abuse before the House—the transporta •* of the Dorchester LaboureM , for whose return I
« id the foundation ; the ease of Mr . Taylor , confined *¦ * bat the House termed blasphemy ; the liberation < 6 ort aad Bell , proprietors of the TrwSW , impri-*« in the Qaeen * i Bench for what a jury called libel , tt virieh the Attorney-General and the Whip cheered * jjkL coming from the present Earl Fitrwffliam and ** iim Brougham . Grant and Bell were imprisoned fr ptecbely the same thing which the otter two were *** edfce . I supported some proprietor of a Brighton * & * against his oppressors , and tome persona , * &Me names I forget , who were imprisoned for ** -p » ymeat -of ehn « h ratea . I defended the ^ des - Unionist u a legal and a useful body . I ** a for rrery measure ia fcrtmr of the Dissenters
and slaves , aad all who were desolate and oppressed I endeavoured to tax the Irish landlords for a sweeping provision for the Irish poor , but in this , as in every thing else , Mr . OConnell opposed me . I made five fruitless efforts to get a House , to bring the case of the Irish poor before the country . O'Connell always kept the Irish members away , and the House was always counted ODt I furnished Mr . Littleton with the draft of a new Stamp Act , which I took great pains and trouble in drawing up , and also with the draft of a sew Quarter Sessions * Bill for Ireland , by which I scraght to bring speedy justice home to eierj poor man ' s door , by giving him a cheap court of equity as well as a court of law , in bis immediate locality .
By the Stamp Act , I sought to put it out of the power of the landlord t * distrain npon , or to refuse a lease , or stamped receipt to , or otherwise oppress , or capriciously remove his tenants . By the Quarter Sessions' Act , I sought to confine all cases bet-ween landlord and tenant , bnyer and seller , master and servant , debtor and creditor , to a cheap local court , and thereby sare the expense of the superior and more expensive courts of justice ; these Littleton promised me to support , but he broke his word .
Daring my Saturdays and holidays , I deroted myself to attendance at public meetings for instruction , and I refused all invitations to Ministerial dinners upon those days . I refused patronage and other indirect bribes . I opposed the emigration or transportation scheme . 1 Toted in a minority of four , in a House of 300 , against Mr . CobbetfB motion , for the removal of Sir Robert Peel from the Privy Council ; being struck off the records of the House . I voted for the admission of the Jews among the infidels ; and here let me say that that was the only vote which I would not now repeat ; not that I hate a Jew , but because I dread the influence of his money , upon a constituency
qu&lified by a money value . I would now rather see the devil than a Jew walking into the House of Commons . I wish most sincerely that the single-breasted Quaker , Durham Pease , this " marrow fat" member , was out of it Such was my conduct for the two se&sUns of 1833-4 , —my best efforts being marred by Mr . O'Connell . If the debate was upon an English question , he said , " leave it to the English members ; " if npon a Scotch question , be said , " leave it to the Scotch members ; " and if npon an Irish Church question , " leave it to the Whigs and the Tories ; " but he always spoke himself ; so did I ; except when he actually held me down , or sal upon the skirts of my coat
Thus ended the two first Reformed Sessions , and the Tories got into o&ce . A dissolution took place , and I was denounced by the whole liberal press of Ireland , and opposed by every one » f O"ConneIlfc friends and relations in the county of Cork . I was told that I never would hare a chance again ; that I had been a mere bubble upon the Repeal surface . Well , what did I do ? But , let me tell you , that at the close of each session I tendered my resignation in the Market-place of different larre towns ,
where I explained my differences with Mr . O'Connell , but it was not accepted . Upon the second election I took no trouble—I never stirred among the people—I only addressed the electors once . I was engaged till the day before mj otrn election in returning Mr . John O'Connell for YoughaU , at his father ' s request , who ordered the whole ceunty to attend , but made off himself , and forgot to leave even poll books ; here , as everywhere else , I paid my own expencea , and got no fee : but more of this in another place .
A second time I was returned , and had the county been polled out , my majority would haTe been orer 1 S 00 . I came again to England , and again proceeded in my straightforward course . My first motion was to bring the Rathcormae murder before the House . Mr . O'Connell and Mr . Hume got op , and asked me if I Would embarrass Ministers by such an untimely motion f I said I would—that 1 was pledged—bat no one would second the motion for an investigation into this most blood-thirsty affair , now slumbering as a thing forgotten . but which , though opposed by those of th « same persuaann as the slam , I will yet bring to light , and have blood tor blood , if justice is to be had on earth .
In 183 » I was ousted by aa Election Committee , an Irish repealer voting against me upon every division . Let me name one for curiosity : he voted that a printed paper found upon a file , which the High Sheriff , now . Lord Liitowil , admitted be had never seen , was a pood and nficieni terwice upon the High Sheriff . I dont impugn kis honesty , k-ut I do his law . I did not know the complexion of the House , and Mr . O'Connell Tery kindly sent his two sons , Maurice aad John , to strike
my Committee ; and , by aome unforeseen accident or another , my ease was submitted to six of the most iniquitous Tories in the House . Let me mention three of them—Baroaby , Jockey Houldsworth , and Sir Colin Campbell : in short , the whole House burst out laughing when they saw the Committee come to the table be to sworn . More of this , however , in its proper place , and which , I pledge myself , will make Englishmen ctare .
In June , 18 S 5 , I ceased to be a Member of Parliament ; and in July , 1835 , I stood for Oldbam , upon Chartist , Repeal , and anti-tithe principles . That is five years and a half ago ; and then did I form my first alliance with the English people . I was defeated at Old ham by a mistake of Mi . Fielden ' s . It was this ;—I was first in the field ; but requiring franks , and a knowledge of the leaders of the Radical party , Mr . Fielden , by an accident , enclosed my letters U Mr . oshoa Milne and Dr . Fitton , of Royton , the two principal members of Mr . John Cobbett's Committee , who , I was assured at the time , was not going to stand , but for whom those two
gentlemen were hard at work , and in correspondence with Mr . Fielden . I spent fifteen days at Oldham . I went there a strangtr—I left it a beaten man ; but my upright Committee , more than pleased with my conduct , sent for me after their defeat , and announced that my conduct throughout had given universal satisfaction , and that the Committee had come to the unanimous decision of paying all expenses , which were very heavy , and even asked for my own prirate bill , which I would not allow them to pay . A beaten man generally sneaks off . However , I received a public toner after my defeat ; and , no room being large enough to hold the guests , we were obliged te . have every 100 m in the hotel ,
and they were too few . I was honoured with a public entry into Aahton , Rochdale , and Manchester ; my Committee attending their beaten man in several carriages , and joining the largest public procession ever witnessed in Manchester . The cure of prejudice was then completed . I saw England for the first time with the naked eye . I saw a drunken manufacturer , as drunk as an owl on Sunday , wko took me very severely to task for calling upon that day on temporal matters . Mr . Ainsworth was with me . The elector could not be " reasonably deemed" in a condition to lie on the floor without holding , but he belshed out that he was for Church and State . I then f « the
first time saw the Rattle Boxes and their victims . I was up betimes every morning , and watched the pallid face , the emaciated frame , and the twisted limbs , wending their way to the earthly helL I saw the exhausted frame staggering home more ghastly still by candle light , after fourteen hours' toil : and I said , here ' s a field for philanthropy . From that moment I became the uiipaid advocate of my fellow man . Five years and a half have passed away , and were I asked where I am most popular , I should say where I haTe been longest known at eidham . When I returned to London , I racked inrentioti for the means of opening England , as I had opened
the county of Cork . The grand question of the session was the Irish Corporation Rtform Bill : the grand struggle « pon it , was the Lords against the Commons . I held meetings at Brent / ord and elsewhere to escoaraga the Commons in resisting the Lords' amendment * . The Irish Members were full of Talrar , and . In their pot-raliancy , had rasolred . to oppose them to a man ; but the incipient sweets of unpolluting , because not openly avowed , patronage , stepped in , and the fabric of hope , built by the Irish Liberal ! on Monday , was blown down on Tuesday , and , headed by Mr . O'Connell , they accepted the Lords' instalments .
Upon the evening of the following day , I saw Mr . ¦ O'Connell at the Westminster Club , asd said to him , " Yob have sold us at last ; I hare done with you . " I then « aw that Whigs is office were hungry Tories , and resolred that only two political parties should exist , till the struggle should terminate , in ths ascen dancy of the people ; and with this Tiew I established the great Radical Association of Marjlebone , on the 18 th of September , and which waa followed by the establishment of fourteen others is the Metropolis aad Greenwich ; the first fruit * af which were , the
return of the Dorchester Labourers , and the reduction is newspaper stamps . ¦ Never was London so rgasised aa doling the winters of 1835 and 1836 . These two questions we rarer lost * ighf of ; we petitioned and memorialised , held public meetings and agitated , until we finally accomplished our aim and end . Is the autumn of 1835 , when I could no longer defend myself in the House , and haring no portion of the press at my command , Mr . O'Connell denounced me to his creatures In Dublin—said I was unworthy the confidence of the Irish people , and made me a present to the English Radicals .
I wrote two letters to know if he had been mureported , thus opening the old back-door for him ; but conscious strength , and ignorance of my resolutions , induced him to withhold a reply . So I addressed to him a series of letters in a pamphlet , exposing his policy and defending myself ; and from that hour to the present , he has nerer attended a single public meeting of the people in England or Scotland , while I was at large to meet him .
In December , 1835 , in the depth of winter , I received a commission from the Parent Radical Association , upon parchment , and under hand and seal of tbe officers , by order of a publicmeeting , to establish braneb / Associatlons throughout the country . They , like Englishmen , offered to pay all my expences : I declined , determined to pay my own way , and avoid the suspicion of wishing to prolong a profitable trade . I was received everywhere with open areas . I established numerous Associations , returned , and was honoured with the thanks of my fellow-labourers . I then wrote gratuitously for many London papers . In 1836 , I made another
tour , and extended my mission to Scotland , where I was received with open arms . I found that between the Durham and the O'Connell humbug , public opinion was at sea . I resolved to right it I established associations in Edinburgh , Glasgow , Paisley , Kilmamock , Leith , Dunfermline , Dundee , and other places , which shortly afterwards threw out their branches , as la Eng * land , and covered the land with the foliage of Radical " ism . I was honoured with a splendid pnblic entry into Glasgow , in Dec 1836 , and addressed an in-door meeting computed at 7 , 000 . The whole of the curious"for miles around were present , and every newspaper proprietor
and editor in Glasgow . They came to see the play damned ; but it so far succeeded that at the close I was presented with a flattering address , which awaited my desert ; and I was by acclamation voted the President of the National Association of Scotland , which was that night formed . I then became the national gaaette . In 1837 , I visited Yorkshire and the North again ; but the first blush of curiosity having faded , I found that tbe press was entirely mute , while I was working myself to death , and that a meeting in one town did nothing for another . I ordered numbers of different papers , and offered to pay for reports ; but . no , my principles werebeterodox ,. and tbe press was closed against mo , and thus were my expences doubled aud my toil increased . In June , 183 7 , 1 wrote to Leeds ,
to advertise a public meeting . I followed in expectation of finding all the arrangements perfected , but no notice was taken , and I had my labour and txpenee for my pains . Still aware of the danger to the man , but tbe success to the cause which must follow the establishment of a dissent paper , I called a meeting on Woodhouse Moor , by placard , with loss of time and much money which a single advertisement wonld hare spared , and I there announced mj determination to establish a paper if our meetings were disregarded . That threat was not sufficient ; our proceedings were passed orer with a sneer , and I ordered my publisher , Mr . Hobaon , to start for Sheffield , and to arm me with millions of little tongues , whose multiplied voices would speak to all nations . He went , and the type was ordered .
Upon the 18 th of November , the Star wu announced to come out Government threw every obstacle in my way , and , in the meantime , came the attack upon the Glasgow Cotton Spinners . I forgot the paper . I attended two and three meetings eTery night I never mentioned tbe Northern Star , but roused , without any journal to assist me , the whole of English feeling for those poor men . I went myself to the trial I toek some money , the fruit * ot my labour—much mare was subsequently sent As soon as I arrired , the cards were dealt ; I saw every hand , and that my profession had all tbe trumps , but that they would not play them . I
all but went down on my knees to persuade the committee , Hugh Alexander and others , te play tbe game out . and they were most willing ; but still the vultures saw the prey , and tbey would not lei go thai * hold . I told them that postponing the trial would but furnish , by delay , an opportunity to . amend the hand ; whereas the men must be acquitted , as at present indicted . I could not stop them . Tbey postponed the trial—the indictment was amended—the prisoners were acquitted on all the counts contained in tbe old and preserved in the fresh indictment , and were convicted npon the . new counts , which delay had given them time to furnish . I left Scotland ; travelled the whole of two nights ; arrived at Manchester on Wednesday evening , saw 3000 sheets stamped for the first number , and started by
the mail carrying the paper with me ; arrived at Leeds at three o ' clock on Wednesday morning , when the first side should have been printed ; roused up the men , set to work , wrote , bungled , put together , and got ont the paper ; ( never having tried the printing machine before ) - I saw it printed and posted , and west to bed on Friday night , for the first time that week , thanking God that my 3000 friends ware upon the watch while I slept E very one knows how I worked for the cotton spinners . I attended their second trial in January—They came home the other day with an injunction from Brougham , Wakley , and others , to take no notice of me , They were within an hour ' s journey of my dungeon , and they turned their backs upon me . I forgive them . If they are ever prosecuted again I will defend them again .
On the 18 th of November , 1837 , 1 established the Northern Star , the first paper erer established In England exclusively for the people ; a paper which has given a completely new tone to the whole press of the empire ; a paper which may be truly called the mental link which binds the industrious classes together ; a paper which has , for the first time , concentrated tha national mind into one body , now become irresistible . In 1838 , I established the great Northern Union , another powerful body . In 1839 , I became a member of the National Convention . In July , 1839 , I was tried at York for a libel , consisting of four lines taken
from another paper . There never was such a farce as that trial . Crown prosecutor , Judge , Jury , and all , were moved to laughter by its absurdity ; but , as I hare before informed you , one Patrick Ryall was hung in Ireland for laughing ; and , where the oppressor prowls , what is law in Ireland soon becomes law in England . The laughing hysenas laughed me ont of my liberty . Yea , tbe lying scoundrels , they found me " guilty ; " and one of them said that he did so because I bullied the jury . In March , 1840 , I was tried for another libel that I never saw . The principal charge against me was for the
publication of a raving rhapsody , delivered at Manchester by a fanatical wretch called William Taylor , of whom no one ever beard before or since . I am not here for any thing O'Brien said , or that 1 said ; I am here tor what " Bible Chartist" Taylor said . I was found ' gnilty" at York , in part to lay the foundation for O'Brien ' s being found " guilty" at Lirerpool . Tie Attorney-General laid most stress on the speech of Taylor ; ss did Mr . Justice Coleridge , at York ; again , In aggraTation of punishment , he laid most stress npon It ; so did tbe court . I serer » aw this saint , nor his wall of Jericho . I never knew a grain of good come of " Bible Chartism ; " I
nerer knew a sound principle hatched under the wing of fanaticism . They will leave 70 a when they get quiet sisters to pay bettor th > n the poor Chartists . I tell you , the question of civil rights should sever be mixed ip with fanaticism . Instead of forwarding , it will retard the end . See Ireland ! " O glory be to God , I gained emandpation without bloodshed , "isapalliatiTeforcivil restrictions asd a cloak for political inquity ; while tbe whole people are " emancipated" from the one-pound parson to tbe
one-poand-flre landlord , and from the civil power to a standing army of spy police ; from a Protestant judge to an over cautious Catholic one ; over cautious , lest by even doing justice to a poor Catholic , he should be suspected of partiality , and who , therefore , makes him the scape-goat of bis accusing conscience . And this is " emancipation without blood 1 " while the murders of Wallstown , Rathoormac , and a thousand other spots , crimsoned with Catholic gore , are yet unavenged . ' Howbeit , a time wfil come !! —we most bide it
In April , 1840 , 1 pleadednot guilty at tivei . pool to an indictment for riot , conspiracy , sedition , t > lmult , and God only knows what ; never having seen the riot , beard the conspiracy , of witnesse d the -MottttoL ' . <* tumult In Mar , I was called tip to receive a receipt in fail for my many delinquencies , when Nottingham 1-Denman , the Chartist of 1819 , sent me to a felen's prison , which Phipps has turned into an inquisition ; and , ' thank God , here I am ; a proof of my power , of the strength of my cause , and the affection wbioh the people bear me .
In another letter I shall show yon that I was not fairly convicted ; that I kept within the precincts # f the law ; within the sanctuary of the constitution ; and that , sot being able to trap me into indiscretion , they assailed me within the very sanctuary which ehonld have been held inviolate . J mention this to establish myself in your judgment as a prudent general . I mention it to prove to you that , tot eight years , I have kept within the law ; while I have gone as far , or farther , than any other man in bringing bad laws into disrepute .
You would not have thought me sincere if I had not been victimised . This is an error of public judgment ; howeTer , we must sometimes respect even prejudices ; and , if anything was wanting to perfect your confidence , I rejoice at the fact of your prejudice supplying this requisite . Now , attend to me , while I state simple facts . From September , 1835 , to February , 1830 , 1 led you single , handed and alone . For fifteon months of that time 1
had tha most extensively circulated journal in the kingdom ; and , during that whole period , while excitement was at its height , no man was ever brought before a magistrate , charged with a single violation of the peace arising out of political agitation . I nevet saw a riot , disorder , or even a drunken maa , at one of the thousands of meetings I attended throughout the empire . We heard of no provocations , while I waa quietly undermining th £ Whig citadel , and forming the nation into one body .
During that time , not one single farthing was levied on the people for agitation . I paid all myself , out of my own pocket ; while the Birmingham wealthy Unionists were spending the poor man's money in selling him , and have never yet accounted for it ; but they shall , t > r I will sue them for my sixpence which I paid for my ticket I never travelled one mile at your expence . I wonld accept of no fee , favour , or reward , beyond your cheering approbation . And , in 1839 , when the nation was taxed agaioat my consent , —and when I was compelled to join bankers , merchants , brokers , manufacturers , barristers , lawyers , parsons , Members of Parliament , and , in short , tbe whole nest
of vermin , —from that moment the country has been in hot water . " You said this , " and " I said that , " and "but for you it would have been s * and so , " " we only did so and so , " and " you advised arming , " and "I was for one pound notes , " and " you got tbe people into scrapes of which I warned thorn , " and so nothing bat prosecutions , incarcerations , transportations , heartbreakings , weeping , wailing , and gnashing of teeth . Not one single leader who abandoned us having given a shilling to defend the people from the vengeance which they brought npon them , while it has cost me thousands ; and . guiltless myself , every slippery saint and
trafficking sinner who has slipped out of the noose , has left his share of the rope round my neck : but of this in its proper place . Always bear . in mind that the Star has been over- three years in the front of the battle ; that the leading articles , which are the index ef the proprietor ' s feelings and opinions , have been well watched , and not one single line has been seised hold of , even by the most anxious prosecutor . Mind that Original matter is that which alone thould be prosecuted ; all else is matter of news ; but that is matter of opinion . Bear in mind , that for eight years I have been in the very
vortex of politics ; friend and foe alike trying to rain me ; obliged to bear the desertion of tbe betrayer , and the disappointment of tbe betrayed ; and I have never yet got a shake , thank God : and why f Because I stand like a rock in the midst of ocean , against which the angry wave may dash , but part * in foam-Because , for eight years ; prying fame has dogged my every step ; and even scandal has not been able to aay " he is a profligate , a gambler , a drunkard , a tale-bearer , an evil speaker ; he leaves his bills unpaid , and dishonours our cause . "
No ! Where is the man who has ever heard a bad principle , a mean expression , ox even a doubtful word , escape my lips t Where la the man who has been so watched , and yet so free from slander f Where is the man who has sustained one ebAractCT-fn the great political drama , as I have done , for eight years , acting it all myself f Where is the trafficking politician who can say , or who ever could say , to the nation , " I am in bonds for yon ; and by account , stated and settled by your own auditors at Manchester , you owe me between
£ 200 and £ 300 , not counting the thousands not taken into account V Where is the man who has stood by you in the senate-house of tbe nation , at the table of the aristocrat , in the presence of insolent magistrates , and before the awful tribunal of a merciless Bench , as I have done f . If these things , then , be true , read my appeal in a shorter letter , and say whether or no my prayer shall be granted . I am , Your faithful friend , FEARGUS O'CONNOR .
— ¦ ¦ ? TO HER MOST GRACIOUS MAJESTY THE QUEEN . Madah , —Having ascertained what are the ends for which seciety exists , and the bonds by which it is holden together , we are , in the next place , to inquire what , line of conduct is required , on the part of the Government , in order to secure the attainment of these ends . This ia , beyond all question , a subject of the greatest moment aud importance , both to those who govern , and those whose every interest is , not only remotely but directly , involved in the due administration of public affairs . It is not to the theory of
government that I refer . That may vary in different ages , in different places , and under different circumstances . But the practical application of the principles of what is called government are fixed ; and cannot be departed from without manifest injustice and injury to the parties concerned . We have seen that , in this mixed state ef society , men are congregated together for a threefold purpose , and are acted upon by a twofold agency . The proper line of conduct , therefore , which those invested with authority ought to pursue , is one which will , in the most efficient manner , secure tbe accomplishment of their purposes , by the
judicious employment of this double agency . This is , in fact , the line of conduct professedly pursued by all governments , however diversified in their form aid character . Bat I must take leave , from long and close observation , to conclude , that in no single case , hitherto , has the means accomplished the contemplated end ; and because of this , we find the world involved in confusion and disorder , and society , the true prosperity of which depends upon the calm and undisturbed tenor of its coarse , tossed to and fro like the restless wave of the troubled ocean , and the elements of which it is composed appearing destitute of every principle of
coherency , and threatening to return to their original disorder . Wrapt up in the sycophancy which fills your palace , and lulled into security by the golden glitter and the apparent prosperity which are alone permitted to meet year observance , it Is more than probable that you are totally unacquainted with tbe Indications of a gathering storm , which are every where so apparent to the eye of those , who , uodaaoled by the glare of courtly lunacy , are accustomed to see things as they really are . Yet be assured , Madam , that if by the Imbecility , recklessness , or selfishness of those whom yon bare called , or may call , to your councils , the
bonds of society become loosened , and tha just authority of the law superseded by a system of arrant despotism , which shall place lite and property in jeopardy—then , and in this case , the old eonstitn * tional axiom , the , Kin * can do no wrong , will be of no avail . It will be . found that the King must suffer And drink of the cap of calamity , as well as the veriest outcast of the people . There is nothing pleasing ia boob a scene as this ; bat it is the troth ; and the know * ledge of it , is , I conceive , alike necessary to the security of your Majesty ' s throne , and the peace and happiness of ( his great empire .
Tbe line of conduct to be pursued by the raleraof great people , divided into various classes , and embracing a vast Variety of conflicting interests , va ust , to be really beneficial , be in strict accordance vith tha
fundamental principle of truth and justice . To secure the ends for which society exists , the legislative and executive powers most be so exercised , as to afford ample protection to the honest and well-disposed portions of the community ; it must also be so far restrictive aa may be necessary to prevent one man from unfairly trenching upon the rights of another ; it must , in the next place , adopt such a / system of criminal jurisprudence , as shall be of an efficiently corrective character ; and it must , lastly , be sedulously engaged in promoting the work of individual and national reformation .
I would most reapectfally crave your Majesty ' sserions attention to each of these points of consideration . Firstj I say , the line of conduct required from the Government , in the present state of society , must be such as will afford ample protection to the honest and well-disposed portions of the community . And here before , proceeding farther , let me premise that , by the honest and well-disposed portions of the community , I mean persons of every class and grade of society . All are , according to the theory of that Constitution which you , Lady , are sworn to uphold , equal before the law , consequently , all are entitled to the same degree , as
well as kind , of protection , from the state of which they are the common children , and which is supported and sanctioned bj their common contributions . In this view of the matter , it appears plain , beyond reasonable question , that not only every class , but every man , woman , and child in the nation , has a claim upon the Government for the protection of all natural and acquired rights ; and this involves in it , not only the protection of life and property , in the conventional use of these terms , but the protection from aggression upon all and singular the things which a man can call his own , including , of coarse , the means by which he acquires those things .
Thus , it ia the duty of the Legislature to provide that no class of the community shall combine together to the manifest injury of other classes , or of individuals ; and it is also its duty to prevent or controul the introduction of « uch means and powers as shall hare a certain tendency , direct or indirect , to increase the wealth and comfort of one or a tew , at the expenoa ot the comfort , morality , and life of tens of thonsands of the industrious population . Under this head , also , it is the duty of the public authorities to provide for such a remuneration of labour , as shall enable the able-bodied workman to procure good and
ample food and clothing , together with a comfortable habitation , and the means of a sound , practical education for himself and his family , to which I will add , that no Government does or can afford the amount « f protection which can justly be expected from it , till It provides that all this shall be within the reach of every man who engages in the pursuit of business , industry , or labour , eight hours in the day , for the six working days . I am aware that it has been calculated that four hours of labour , each working day , would produce enough for the comfortable and respectable maintenance of every individual ia the empire : in
allowing , therefore , doable that amount of time to be thus employed , there would be ample means provided for those who , by infancy , sickness , and old age , were rendered incapable of working at all . If your Majesty should think that eight hoars ef the day spent in toil is too small a portion , I would refer yon to an authority which should have some weight with royalty . Your glorious predecessor , Alfred , divided bis time into three portions , devoting eight hoars to sleep and the exercise of devotion ; eight hours to business ; and eight to stady and recreation . I think this royal apportionment of time cannot be too closely copied both by
the court and the country . Included in this duty of providing for the protection of all , is the provision for the poor , which must be made by law , and which every state , by the recognition of what ia called the right to possess landed property , binds itself to provide . Nothing can be clearer than the right , which every one born in the wintry possesses , to live by the produce of the land Of his birth , and it is therefore obvious that any one who should claim a right to appropriate more land to himself , than is sufficient far his own wants , including , of coarse , those of his family , or who should set up a
claim to the soil after his crops were removed , without , at the same time , taking npon himself , in some way or other , the burden of providing for those whom he had deprived of their natural means of support , would be guilty of an act of usurpation and robbery , which it is the bounden duty of the Government to prevent In the present state of society , the land is not common right j it has become the property of individuals ; bat to use a legal term , the whole people are in law s « iaed of the land , by virtue of the original grant , aud have therefore a right to demand a maintenance from it , which demand must be complied with in one or all of the following ways . —
First , one portion of the community must be fed directly from the soil , by being located upon it , and receiving a given portion of the produce , tor an equivalent for it , in money , ) as the wages of labour . Second , another portion of the social family most be indirectly maintained by the land , while engaged in the pursuits of trade , manufactures , and commerce . That is , the landlord spends his rents , and the farmer tbe profits of his stock , in some shape or other , amon the trading , commercial , aad manufacturing classes , who , in their tarn , become , as they prosper in their several pursuits , better tenants to the landlord and better customers to the farmer ; and thus tend directly to increase the value of the land , which otherwise would soon cease to pay the cost of cultivation .
A third portion of the people , those who are destitute and incapable of labour , have an equal claim for a subsistence out of the land of their nativity , and which ought to be furnished to them not as a boon but as a right ; for it is to them an equivalent for the fee simple of the land , of which the arrangements of society have deprived thorn . The provision for the poor , of which I have been speaking , should sot , I conceive , be made by a tax falling directly upon the land , nor do I think that the trading or commercial portions of the nation should be charged with any considerable share of this impost . It does appear reasonable that the burden should be borne principally by those who caused it , and however
tbe taking np the land as private property tended originally to give birth to pauperism , it ia plain that the increase of ontaxed machinery has given to it its gigantic stature , and that , while it remains unchecked , pauperism must of necessity go on and increase . The protection of a good Government will , therefore , be employed In securing the honest aud industrious from the ravage * of hopeless desperation , ( driven to madness by the pressure of distress , ) by a judicial system of parochial relief , the means for which it will derive from those sources which are most clearly pointed oat by the dictates of equity and justice . It will be neces sary again to revert to this subject as we prosecute our inquiry .
These and a thousand other matters are intimately and necessarily connected with the protectiveitunctions of civil government . Upon the due discharge of this importantbranchofits high duties depend the prosperity of arts , science , and literature . It is that by which tha weak is to be defended from the attack of the strong ; it is to be the watcher over publio health , the guardian f public morals , and the slumberless superintendent of public liberty . Without this , public interests would
be neglected , anarchy and confusion would supersede social order and domestic qmlet ; that confidence , which results from a sense of security , would give place to fears and jealousies of an nndsflnable character ; and while every nun wonld feel himself compelled to stand with a defensive weapon in his hand , the bad and vicious passions of men would obtain a fearfnl predominance , and rapine and disorder would soon be the order of the day . .
Intimately connected with tills subject , is the second point necessary to be attended to in the Una of conduct to be pursued by the persons that role , I mean those acts of the publio functionaries which are distinguished at restrictive . By these , I mean those wise and salutary provisions , by which one man is forbidden to invade the rights , destroy or misappropriate the property , impede the industry , destroy the character , injure the good aane , « take away , by tone or fraud , the life fo
his fellow-man . Man , in his present fallen and degraded condition , is a being ef selfish , avaricious , revengeful , and tyranni « al propensities . His selfishness leads him to place bis own interests as supreme , and those of all others as subordinate ; hi * avarice is ever on the watch to obtain possession ef what be deems desirable , no matter how , or at whose expence , he can obtain it ; for arsrice is by no means confined to the inordinate , desire of getting money . Hi » revengeful passionr incite him to be , on all occasions , his own avenger 1 and his love of power impels him on to act the tyrant , whenever he can find a helpless
victim and a favourable opportunity . True , it is , that those bahef ul and noxious weeds , which disfigure and deform the face of God ' s moral creation , may be eradicated by the influence of a pore and genuine religion ; and plants of a far nobler nature introduced into their places ; By religion , here , I do not mean the external profession and reception of the creedsand dogmas of this , that , or the ther sect or party , calling itself Christian . ' I mean that principle of natural good which is of the divine mercy inseminated from birth into the heart of every man , be he externally Christian , Jew *
Mohammedan , or Pagan , and by which selfishness can be superseded by a noble spirit of benevolence ; tha coldest avarice give place to a glowing flame of generosity ; revenge retire before compassion and forgiveness ; and tyranny resign his throne to the generator rule of patriotism and philanthropy . This , Madam , b genuine religion , wherever found , alike honourable to God , and safe for man ; it U that , which , did all possess , rulers would be , indeed , nursing fathers , and subjects would be obedient children . " Earth would by angels' feet be trod , One great garden of her God . "
It is a melancholy fact , however , that this is not the case . In every social state there are some in whom those detestable passions are entirely destroyed by tba prevalence of the opposite virtues ; they are , however , but few , but it is impossible to overrate them . They are the salt of the earth , the light of the world , and with or without law , they are a law onto themselves . Besides these , * the mass of the population consists of persons of a mixed and varied character . In suoh , the better principles of their nature struggle to reject tha bad , and , aided by surrounding circumstances , they generally succeed . To such , the restrictive laws which publio wisdom and virtue have established , are of themoei essential importance . They confirm them in their
desires to pursue the path of rectitude , and by exciting their salutary fears , they restrain them when , from some supposed advantage , they are tempted to act wrong . As to those bad spirits , who can neither be allured into the paths of virtue by the prospect of protection and security , nor restrained by the enactments made for the good of society—to them the rod must be applied ; and for this purpose the other two functions of the executive must be brought into operation . These must , however , form the subject of a future essay . I am , Madam , Your Majesty ' s faithful and obedient subject and servant , London , December 31 , 1 S 40 . NTJMA .
" MOTHER GOOSE . " TO THB EDIT 0 B OF THK NORTHERN STAB . Dear- Sib , —Lying is a necessary attribute In tha defence of a bad cause : hence has Mother Goose stolen away the wreath from the brows of " Neddy . " In a leader of last week , headed " The approaching Reform Demonstrations , " the " Gooss" labours hard to criminate the Star , or , rather , to nullify the effects-of your advice , evidently alarmed for the consequence * But mark the mode he takes : first , he breaks the heads of Chartists , and then , with " soft sawder , " tries hi * best to plaster them up again . This dust wont blind a real Chartist , though ; coaxing is too late , and gammon is only laughed at
How the shifty rogues change their tactics I " There will be no . opportnnity for proposing an amendment for Universal Suffrage , as no resolutions whatever will be put to the meeting , " says " Goote . " Indeed , who believes this f But , whether or not , tome business is to be done ; and I fancy Chartists knew how " to give an impulse to opinion on the great question of farther organic changes , " as well as the geese , with ail their gabbling . But , oh fie I you mgrakful wretcnos I Yes , Chartists , to attempt it ! Mother Goose farther says , "The Chartists . cannot be ignorant of the fact that , almost without exception , the strangers who are announced to
be present are ' friendly to their cause . " Friendly , Indeed I There , is oar very excellent "friend , "'Joe Home ; what do we think of Joseph f Why , he most be ground- over again before he is our "friend * —he smells too much like a part of DanV" tail . ' Now , Sir William may be our "friend , " and so may Roebuck , Buncombe , Bo wring , Ewart , Gisborne , Langdale , Thompson , and Crawford y bat not M * yet . Whether wo look prospectiveiy or retrospectively , the lynx eye of a Chartist can detect toe black speck on the disks at those luminaries , while travelling in their orbit ; and will never acknowledge them as "friendi , " until the Charter becomes their grand centre of attraction .
Let them talk as they like , and let the " GoomT talk for them if she choose , " words are bat wind , " so long as they seek ( or others seek for them ) to tail themselves upon the big political swindler , Dan . Out upon them 1 they are our enemies , and the Chartists , therefore , will find something to do at the " Demonstration . " But how , are these gentlemen the " friends" of the Chartists ? Because , forsooth , " Sir William Molesworth helped Lovett and Collins in their time of need ; no man has so fearlessly exposed the cruel prison
treatment of the Chartists as honest TomDoncombe ; Roebuck has gratuitously defended Chartist prisoners whenever called upon to do so ; Colonel Thompson has stood by them through good report and through bad report ; Sharman Crawford and Dr . Bpwring defend their principles ; and , in short , almost every one of the guests invited , have befriended , on one , or more occasions , the prosecuted of the Chartist party . " He then goes on to say , "Hew mad , how irrational , how ungrateful , therefore , would it be , were they to take measures which could only disgust their friends (?) without advancing their principles one single step . "
Here , then , are private reasons for the regulation of public actions ; more villanous reasoning , than this , I never met with ' ; and yet , Sir , I can give you a parallel case . " ' - . " .. ' ¦ " . ¦ ¦' . ' ¦ . ¦ ¦ -. " After we bad given John Ayreyhis discharge , as a candidate for the office of Councilman , for the North East Ward , on account of his " Household Suffrage ^ notions , he told a neighbour of mine that he and his friends had it in contemplation ( as I was at that time very ill off ) to send me a leg of mutton ; and that it was actually ordered , and a person appointed to deliver it ,-, and that something very handsome was intended to be done for mo after the election ; but now , that I had ceased to exert myself to ensure bis return , rather than help , he would do me all the harm he could .- which has been fulfilled- to the very letter . At this time ,
another of his . friends having given me , one evening , a piece of bacon and bread , value about sixpence , which favour I neither asked nor hinted at , in any way , but for which I certainly expressed myself grateful;—ye £ , Sir , when Js faithfulness to my principles , the Charter , I felt conscientiously called upon to render nugatory this new attempt at Whiggery , by upsetting the whole clique of" shams , " the little-minded , charitable (?) Individaal , boasted at the very next public meeting , what ffreai things he had done for me ; and , like this humbug Editor , denounced me as " mad , irrational , and umgratefai , " because I would not ( considering all thai he had done for me ) sacrifice the right of thinking and acting in bobalf of my own principles , and assist ia carrying the destructive measure of Household Suffrage . . ¦¦ . ¦ ; ¦ ; ' ; ¦ ¦ ' •• ¦ - ¦ . ¦ ' . ' ¦ ¦ ¦
What , then , is to be inferred when a Sham-Radical does a tmall kindness to an individual ? I answer , we may be certain the viper is only baiting with a sprat to catch a salmon—that in serving another , be is only striving more effectually to serve himself . And this base editor would have as suppose toot Uum gentlemen he mentioni , because they have assisted a fellow mortal in difficult circumstances , expect ,-say claim , eternal submission in all things—that henceforth the free expression of opinion by Lovett and Collins , and others , most be bounded by the principles entertained by them , or they are " mad , irrational , and ungrateful . " Will the gentlemen thank " Mother Goose" for thjsr I beg to say that Messrs . Doncombe , Thompson , and others , entertain no such feelings , much less such a gentleman as ^ Sharman Crawford ; and that this crawling sycophant , yelept a Doctor , tint drive * the Gtete , in thai maligning the character of honourable men , by bringing them to tbefevei of his own discreditable and
lowbred baseness ; is fitter far to hold the whip of slavery than the office he fills—is a real apologist for political plunder and oppression , and had he lived In the day » of therack and inquisition , would hate made an excellent heretic-Suming Bishop , or bull-thundering 'Pop * ' " ' - ' ¦ . ¦ ¦ ¦'" ¦ ' '¦ ' . '• . ¦ ¦ - . - ' ¦ . ¦ . ' " .. . ' • . ¦ . ¦ . ¦ What are we tei think of the present state of things , when every poor working man is expected to Mil bjs " birthright fora rrite * of porridge ? - When he most do this , or , at" 1 Ae man" said of me , at ooe of bia hoi * and corner meetings , "he o * ght not' to be tolerated in ' society . " Things must be altered , Sir , or . ma » w 311 never know how to perform a raof act of Hadnejfc Oar slavery is complete , when a graeiout look , or fammr don * 1 % a great man , ia expected to padlock ths . mouth , and direct the actions of others . Freedom , i *? but a name , until we get rid of this obligatory positloji . ^ This shall be done 1 Hurrah for the Start Hurrah for O'Connor I ¦ Hurrah for the Charter 1 Hurrah for ourselves ! Fompopmii , vomDH . . I am , dear . Sir , . - A real Cbartirt , WB . HUK .
THE JNURTHEKW STAR . ^ T
Northern Star (1837-1852), Jan. 16, 1841, page 7, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/ns/issues/vm2-ncseproduct362/page/7/