!! Connaught Journal; Mar 29, 1824 "Procession of Ribbonmen"
- THE CONNAUGHT JOURNAL
Galway, Monday, March 29, 1824
[From the Belfast News-Letter]
In our last number we gave a sthort account of a procession of Ribbonmen,
which took place at Toome, on the 17th inst. (St. Patrick's Day.) We have now to
add, that in various other places there were processions of a similar nature at
the same time. A correspondent informs us, that during the night of the 16th,
and morning of the 17th, a body of Ribbonmen kept sounding horns through the
streets of Downpatrick. In the morning about 200 of them assembled on the
Course, about a mile from that town, into which they marched about 11 o'clock to
the music of fifes. In Bridge-street, they assailed some Protestants, who
resisted, and, after a severe conflict, compelled them to retire. The Ribbonmen,
however, got round to the Windmill Hill, from which eminence they poured down
vollies of stones on Bridge-street, some of which broke Mrs. Millar's window.
Her son, however, fired blank cartridges towards them, to intimidate them, which
had, in some degree, the desired effect. Meanwhile, Alex. Millar, Esq. J.P.
called out a military force, read the riot act, and dispersed the mob, some of
whom he imprisoned. An anonymous correspondent informs us that there was a
similar procession at Castlewellan.-We subjoin his letter:-
To the Editor of the Belfast News-Letter.
"SIR- It is with pain I have to inform you of the disturbed state of part
of this county.
"Yesterday being the 17th of March, the Roman Catholics met in
commemoration of St. Patrick. About 11 o'clock great numbers of men marched into
this town in rank and file, with fifes & drums. They were generally armed with
pistols & bludgeons. At one o'clock they were all assembled. The number exceeded
2000, who marched in ranks which reached nearly a mile and a half, with music
playing, firing alternately, and threatening any person who might oppose them in
their unlawful proceedings. It was 3 o'clock when they left this place in a
state of intoxication. When these misled people could find no person of a
different religion to quarrel with here, they began to fight and beat each other
in a most inhumane manner.- If Government shall permit such mobs to assemble,
the peaceable inhabitants of this district will feel themselves deserted by the
State, which they were always ready to support, and in which, under Providence,
they place their dependence. I understand that those Ribbonmen shot a man on his
fields, about two miles from this, for no other reason than his being a
Protestant. I shall write you more fully on the subject. And remain, Sir, your
obedient servant, "A LOYAL OBSERVER.
"Castlewellan, March 18, 1824."
We have also received accounts respecting assemblage of Ribbonmen at
Santera, Cushindall, and various other places, which at present we postpone
inserting, till we have received further information on the subject.
Cathy Joynt Labath
Ireland Old News