Co. Clare


Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1820-1832, ed. D.R. Fisher, 2009
Available from Cambridge University Press

Background Information

Number of registered freeholders:

8,557 in 1829; 1,604 in 1830

Number of voters:

3,039 in July 1828; 502 in Mar. 1831


18 Mar. 1820SIR EDWARD O'BRIEN, bt. 
5 July 1828DANIEL O'CONNELL vice Vesey Fitzgerald, appointed to office2057
 (Hon.) William Vesey Fitzgerald982
30 July 1829O'CONNELL re-elected after refusing to take the oath of supremacy 
 Lucius O'Brien399
 William Richard Mahon18
 Burton Bindon12
  Mahon’s election declared void, 4 Mar. 1831 
 Sir Edward O'Brien, bt.1771
 James Patrick Mahon493
 William Richard Mahon1

Main Article

Clare mostly belonged to a large number of ‘absentees and needy proprietors’, whose conflicting electoral ambitions provoked frequent contests both before and after the Union.2 One of the most significant landowners was the 3rd earl of Egremont of Petworth, Sussex, who drew nearly £20,000 a year from his estates there without contributing to famine relief or participating in local affairs.3 Another notable absentee, the head of a family which had long provided Members for the county, was the 1st Marquess Conyngham of Slane Castle, Meath, the custos rotulorum, who by this time concentrated his electoral efforts in Donegal and his political concerns at Court, where, through his wife’s sway over George IV, he became lord steward in 1821. His twin, the former Clare representative Francis Nathaniel Burton† of Buncraggy, was lieutenant-governor of Lower Canada, but served as colonel of the county militia and as one of its governors. The other major non-resident figure was the 2nd marquess of Thomond of Rostellan, county Cork, and Taplow, Buckinghamshire, a Tory and anti-Catholic representative peer.

Since 1802 Thomond’s notional seat had been held by the head of the junior branch of his family, Sir Edward O’Brien of Dromoland, an inactive ministerialist and pro-Catholic. He was joined in 1818, when Conyngham’s candidate Major-General Augustine Fitzgerald* of Carrigoran retired on account of ill health, by the former Irish chancellor of the exchequer William Vesey Fitzgerald, another governor, who was ably assisted by the former Clare Member Sir Hugh Dillon Massey of Donas Lodge, county Limerick. Surprisingly, given the relative smallness of his personal landed interest, his aged father, James Fitzgerald† of Inchicronan, who, like all those who had to appease the largely Catholic population, supported Catholic claims, thereafter effectively secured domination over the second seat (although Conyngham, who backed Vesey Fitzgerald, continued to be listed as joint patron with O’Brien in radical sources).4 O’Brien and Vesey Fitzgerald, who together controlled the parliamentary seat of the county town of Ennis (which proved a useful fallback, on occasion), differed over official patronage, with the former complaining in 1819 that the latter, through his connections with the Liverpool administration, had received more than his fair share.5 They both displayed the arrogant consciousness of superior (in some cases, royal) descent and the dangerous excitability of febrile (even, on occasion, madcap) character, which were exhibited by almost all the Clare Members in this period.

Over 6,000 freeholders were created in 1817 and 1818, indicating that a contest had then been expected, but fewer than 1,400, some at Vesey Fitzgerald’s behest, were added to the registers up to the general election in the spring of 1820, when the proclamation of the county because of the outbreak of ribbonism in neighbouring Galway and the accession of the new king were discussed at local meetings.6 Among those named as possible contenders were Thomond’s brother and heir Lord James O’Bryen, a naval captain, who had been defeated at the 1808 by-election; Conyngham’s second son Lord Francis Nathaniel Conyngham*, who had been mentioned as a possibility in 1818 and was for several years the intended vehicle for regaining the family’s Clare seat; and a local gentleman’s son, Henry Westby Brady, who had recently graduated from Trinity.7 But as neither Member was in fact opposed by a rival from within their own nominal interest and no popular candidate in the end emerged, nothing disturbed the unopposed return of O’Brien (proposed by Thomas Studdert of Bunratty Castle), who really only retained his seat as a stopgap for his still under age eldest son Lucius O’Brien, and Vesey Fitzgerald (nominated by William Nugent Macnamara* of Doolin, himself considered a potential representative), who disliked visiting his constituents and felt no compunction about taking up a short diplomatic posting to Sweden later that year.8

O’Brien and Augustine Fitzgerald’s attempt to obtain an effective loyal address at the county meeting in January 1821 was stifled by Macnamara and others, who removed its favourable references to ministers’ conduct towards Queen Caroline.9 However, one was unanimously agreed at another gathering in August 1821, ahead of George IV’s visit to Ireland the following month.10 Under the chairmanship of Terence O’Shaughnessy, parish priest of Ennis and dean of Killaloe, the county’s Catholics met to welcome the appointment of the sympathetic lord lieutenant Lord Wellesley, 19 Jan. 1822, when Nicholas Purcell O’Gorman of Belvue, a Dublin barrister and leading Catholic agitator, moved an address in his favour.11 Both in Clare and London, O’Brien busied himself with forwarding measures for the relief of agricultural distress that summer and at a county meeting, which was attended by various minor landlords, 2 July 1822, he was defended from a newspaper charge of privateering by the prominent Protestant pro-Catholic Tom Steele of Cullane (later renamed Lough O’Connell).12 In January 1823 O’Brien and Augustine Fitzgerald, now a baronet, were the instigators of county meetings to congratulate Wellesley on his escape unharmed from the recent Orange attack in a Dublin theatre and to complain about the continuing distress.13 The ensuing petition for famine relief was presented, 28 Feb., while Vesey Fitzgerald brought up others from Clare for the encouragement of the flax trade, 5 June 1823, and against the suppression of small Irish bank notes, 26 May 1826.14 Meetings chaired by Daniel O’Connell of Kilgory (a relation of his famous namesake), 29 Mar. 1824, 22 July 1825, were held to advance their cause by the Catholics of Clare, whose petition against the suppression of the Catholic Association was presented by Vesey Fitzgerald (although he approved of this measure), 1 Mar. 1825.15 By that year the Catholic rent was being collected with great assiduity there.16

Anxious not to accept the offer of diplomatic employment in America without receiving a peerage, not least because of the difficulty of retaining or of later regaining his seat, Vesey Fitzgerald informed his friend Peel, the home secretary, in the autumn of 1824 that, if so provided for

I should while in the full enjoyment of an ascendancy in my county, and while every motive of retirement must be unsuspected, get rid possibly of a representation that tires me and which, secure as it is, may not always be so [and] which, secure as it may be, obliges me to a hundred acquaintances, to civilities which are burdensome, applications which are odious and the approaches of Popish lawyers and others, whom in the end I am sure I shall offend.

Yet, writing at about the same time, he confided that, although doubtful of his future safety, ‘for the next election, I should not have the slightest apprehension even in my absence, having the whole county pledged to me and being able, if I were on the spot, to bring in both Members’.17 He was considered certain of being returned, but O’Brien, who was rightly thought to be preparing to make way for Lucius, was not reckoned to be secure and so sought backing from various territorial interests, including Thomond’s, and ministerial support from Canning, the foreign secretary.18 Among those believed likely to stand was John Ormsby Vandeleur of Kilrush, the grasping former Member for Ennis and commissioner of customs, who was once described by Daniel O’Connell* (of Derrynane, county Kerry) as ‘as white-livered and as bigoted a dog as you could wish to see’.19

In fact, although he canvassed until the spring of 1826, Vandeleur withdrew because of illness and an unwillingness to jeopardize his official pension, and, to the relief of Sir Edward O’Brien, who was confident that Lucius would get a free run, nothing came of a bid by Sir Augustine Fitzgerald to offer in his place.20 Conyngham’s third son, Lord Albert Denison Conyngham†, was mentioned before the general election that summer, when there were reportedly 14,000 registered electors (all but 1,000 of whom were 40s. freeholders), but more attention focused on Macnamara, who finally declined an invitation to offer as an independent liberal.21 He was nevertheless briefly put up by the young Catholic activist the O’Gorman Mahon of Mahonburgh on the hustings, but Vesey Fitzgerald (proposed by Macnamara), who had postponed the announcement of his appointment as paymaster-general in order to avoid a by-election, and Lucius O’Brien (introduced by Thomas Arthur of Glenamora), who falteringly denied that he harboured anti-Catholic sentiments, were returned unopposed.22 The county’s Catholics, who were keen to appease concerned Protestant proprietors, held meetings to agitate their claims, 11 July, 27 Sept. 1826.23

O’Connell, who had already had Vesey Fitzgerald put on notice that he would be opposed unless he sided with Canning, the prospective pro-Catholic prime minister, quickly engineered a meeting of local Catholics in Ennis, where he was staying for the assizes, 11 Mar. 1827, to condemn those (who did not include the Clare Members) who had recently divided in the majority against the relief bill. Not only did he call for the future return of two genuine friends of civil and religious liberty that day, but he also secured resolutions for the supervision and protection of the 40s. freeholders, and this was formalized at the inaugural meeting of the Clare Liberal Club, held (as two days earlier) under the chairmanship of the O’Gorman Mahon, on the 13th.24 In a prophetic passage relating to Vesey Fitzgerald, who remained in office under Canning and Goderich, O’Connell promised the knight of Kerry*, 24 Apr., that if he joined Peel, ‘it shall cost him the representation of Clare - that county I have been obliged to put under an open political organization in order to prevent the spread of secret and illegal societies. You may smile at my vanity and yet it was I did it’.25 Vesey Fitzgerald, who had presented the county petition for alteration of the grand jury laws, 23 May, brought up the Catholics’ petition in favour of their claims, 6 June.26 O’Connell hailed the county, whose Catholics met again on 2 Aug. 1827, for taking a much needed lead in the collection of the new ‘rent’.27 Macnamara, whose brother John Macnamara of Moher was also present, and the O’Gorman Mahon, whose brother William Richard Mahon of Newpark was the chairman, attended another heartily O’Connellite meeting of the Liberal Club, 17 Apr. 1828.28

The leader of the Catholic Association therefore already had a high profile in Clare, where his family had originated, before that summer’s by-election, which was precipitated by the duke of Wellington’s appointment of Vesey Fitzgerald as president of the board of trade.29 Of course, O’Connell’s candidacy was not at first even contemplated, and, although privately indisposed to challenge someone with Vesey Fitzgerald’s creditable record on Catholic relief, in June 1828 he encouraged the opposition campaign launched by the Association, which put up £5,000 (soon raised to £8,000) to fund a pro-Catholic anti-ministerialist. Seeking a Liberal Protestant on the model of Henry Villiers Stuart*, the victor of the famous county Waterford contest two years previously, the O’Gorman Mahon and Steele, who, unlike Nicholas Purcell O’Gorman and most of their colleagues, were enthusiastically optimistic, led a delegation from Dublin to requisition Macnamara; but he, aware that the Protestant, and even the Catholic, gentry would rally to the side of the sitting Member, embarrassingly declined. The last minute approaches made to William Smith O’Brien*, whose father Sir Edward O’Brien clung to the new cabinet minister, and Lord William Paget*, whose father Lord Anglesey was the lord lieutenant, were met with derision and for a while it appeared that Vesey Fitzgerald would walk over the course. However, O’Connell, who was persuaded by his friends to take the considerable political and financial risks involved, sensationally entered on the 24th, even though he acknowledged that a refusal to take the oaths would probably preclude him from taking his seat. He duly offered on a platform of emancipation, radical reform and justice for Ireland, and on the 28th entreated the Catholics to return him without resort to drunkenness or disorder.30 He all along declined to have a Protestant candidate put in nomination with him as a security, because it would have diminished the tactical significance of his entering as a sole champion.31

With the pacificatory force of the Order of Liberators at their forefront and self-consciously mimicking the symbols of the Waterford precedent, the friends of O’Connell,32 notably the O’Gorman Mahon, Richard Sheil*, Steele, Jack Lawless, Dominick Ronayne and his eldest son Maurice O’Connell, canvassed aggressively and extensively for him, and he was particularly indebted to his agent, the Ennis attorney Richard Scott.33 At the same time, many priests, notably Father John Murphy of Corofin and the Leitrim controversialist Father Tom Maguire (but not O’Shaughnessy), enlisted their powerful support by haranguing, intimidating and blackmailing (by threats of excommunication) the Catholics, often in their own chapels, into abandoning their usually obsequious deference to their Protestant landlords. Illustrating the aspect of religious crusade that became attached to his sacred mission, O’Connell, who was depicted in a cartoon kneeling before Bishop McMahon of Killaloe in an Ennis street, welcomed the bishop of Kildare and Leighlin’s public letter of endorsement by commenting that the ‘approbation of Dr. Doyle will bring to our cause the united voice of Ireland. I trust it will be the vox populi - vox Dei’.34 A despondent Vesey Fitzgerald predicted to Peel that, although he would go through with the contest, ‘it will not, cannot end well’, and complained that, amid the welter of personal abuse directed at him, during one ineffectual attempt ‘to resist Mr. O’Connell ... all were borne down by the violence of the meeting’. The home secretary tried to instil some backbone into him by replying that he should ignore personalities, but that in respect of anything more serious, he should ‘file an information against Mr. O’This or Mr. MacThat and every real gentleman will applaud the true courage of doing so’.35

Anglesey, who shared Vesey Fitzgerald’s pessimistic assessment of his chances (but was already coming round to accepting the advantage of admitting Catholics to Parliament), deployed massive forces of police (under George Warburton) and soldiers (under Sir Charles William Doyle) around Ennis, with Peel’s full approval, but, while fearing disturbances, noted that the Catholic leaders would attempt to maintain good order so as to sustain the moral authority of their position.36 As, in Warburton’s words, ‘the name of O’Connell has acted like a charm and the whole county is in flame’, the approach of the election revealed a growing mood of discontent, which partially manifested itself in the usual uproar and turbulence of such occasions. Yet, what was remarkable was the extraordinary maintenance of studied calm and quiet intent, with the massed crowds obeying O’Connell’s every direction and filling the streets of Ennis, as the witness Gerald Griffin observed, ‘more like a set of Pythagorian philosophers than a mob of Munstermen’. The king’s aide-de-camp Sir Herbert Taylor* was informed that ‘the excitement amongst the people is really surprising, and no one will want further proof of the Catholic Association governing Ireland’.37 The gentry gamely tried to rally in support of Vesey Fitzgerald, including by raising a subscription (of up to £4,500), but, as Sheil recorded, their appearance huddled together on the hustings, 30 June 1828, ‘indicated at once their superior rank and their profound mortification’, while O’Connell, who had arrived only that morning after a triumphant procession from Dublin, stood out theatrically amongst his admiring band of supporters.38 The proceedings began with a stand-off between the sheriff, John Malony of Kiltanon, who sympathized with Vesey Fitzgerald, and the O’Gorman Mahon, who refused point blank to remove the Liberators’ green sash and medal that were deemed to constitute party colours. Eventually, Sir Edward O’Brien and Sir Augustine Fitzgerald were able to propose Vesey Fitzgerald as an experienced and pro-Catholic minister, and, after an inexplicable hesitation, the O’Gorman Mahon and Steele nominated O’Connell on the basis of the overwhelming support of the Catholic freeholders. Vesey Fitzgerald, speaking with what Sheil described as an ‘easy intrepidity and gentle gracefulness’, provided an assured and fair-minded account of his official career, parliamentary record and local reputation, but became lachrymose when confessing that he had not had the heart to tell his ailing father about the contest. O’Connell, who ridiculed Francis Gore of Derrymore, a regular performer at Clare elections, by pointedly drawing attention to his ancestor as a nailer and Cromwellian soldier, then cruelly mocked his pained opponent (‘I never shed tears in public’), while also damning him, a relative newcomer, for his thoughtless condescension towards an old Catholic (‘in my native land, the land of my ancestors’) and unscrupulously portraying him (‘the smiling gay deceiver’) as a crony of Peel and the intolerant Protestant establishment. Polling, which proceeded peacefully throughout, was neck and neck on the following day, but once it became apparent that the 40s. freeholders - shamelessly driven in by the priests to vote for the Liberator under the eyes of such disbelieving landlords as Sir Edward O’Brien, Vandeleur and Augustine Butler of Ballyline - had started to make their weight of numbers felt, his success (despite a scare about an irregularity in the form of oath used) was only a matter of time.39

A jubilant O’Connell, who responded in kind to his opponent’s courteous concession of defeat, was declared elected with a majority of 1,075 (receiving support from two-thirds of the voters polled), 5 July 1828, when the sheriff made a special return, which incorporated the protests made against him as a Catholic, and Sheil memorably greeted the result as a triumph for the whole Catholic nation.40 The success, long celebrated in Irish songs and folklore, did not prevent acrimonious scenes at the Clare Liberal Club later that month, when it was enlarged and remodelled as an Independent Club.41 There was also outrage expressed, like that which the O’Gorman Mahon directed at George Studdert of Clonderalaw, against the evidence of ensuing landlord retaliation. The Association, whose ‘rent’ receipts had increased vastly during the election, not only had to meet the nearly £7,000 costs (including 650 payments for ‘refreshment and support of freeholders’ amounting to £6,245), but also now committed its funds to assisting distrained or evicted tenants.42 Nor was O’Connell’s position in fact secure, as, for example, Peel was urged to force him into a position of refusing to swear the oaths so that a new writ could be quickly issued, although, as Thomas Wyse* pointed out, there was nothing to stop him standing repeatedly for re-election.43 Furthermore, Smith O’Brien attempted to present a petition complaining against his return, 16 July, and an election petition from Dillon Massy and others, alleging clerical interference and other irregularities, was brought up, 22 July 1828, although it was not proceeded with that session.44

Nevertheless, the by-election had enormous ramifications for the predominant political issue of Catholic emancipation.45 An unnerved Vesey Fitzgerald reported to Peel, 5 July 1828:

The election, thank God, is over, and I do feel happy on its being terminated notwithstanding the result. I have polled all the gentry and all the £50 freeholders - the gentry to a man! Of others I have polled a few remnants of interests only: my own, and not much besides what adhered to me in that way. All the great interests broke down and the desertion has been universal. Such a scene as we have had! Such a tremendous prospect as it opens to us! ... The conduct of the priests has passed all that you could picture to yourself! ... It was a hopeless contest from the first! Everything was against me ... I do not understand how I have not been beaten by a greater majority.

Anglesey, to whom Vesey Fitzgerald wrote in the same strain, agreed that the contest was very far from being an ordinary one, and Peel, who recognized, what Wyse also emphasized, that it marked a ‘turning point’, wrote to the novelist Sir Walter Scott that ‘I wish you had been present at the Clare election, for no pen but yours could have done justice to that fearful exhibition of sobered and desperate enthusiasm’.46 With haunting fears about the unfortunate electoral implications for other Irish counties, including in the expected contest in Galway; for the extent to which actual military unrest was menaced by O’Connell, who publicly sent a ‘whisper’ to the premier that ‘300 soldiers threw up their caps for me since I left Ennis’, and for the possibilities of the ‘contagion’ of social insubordination spreading throughout the whole Catholic population, Peel and Wellington soon reluctantly conceded that emancipation would have to be granted.47

Clare, where, as in neighbouring counties, many celebrations were held, became increasingly divided over sectarian lines that autumn.48 The leading Protestants gathered to form the county’s Brunswick Club, under the presidency of Sir Augustine Fitzgerald, 20 Oct. 1828, but the O’Gorman Mahon and Steele attempted to enter the meeting wearing the insignia of the Liberators and provoked an altercation with Malony, the chairman, who had ordered troops into Ennis to prevent any disturbances. The furore ultimately led to the supersession of both O’Connellites as magistrates and, partly because of Peel and Wellington’s frustration at the lord lieutenant’s failure to deal effectively with the difficult state of this county, to the recall of the now openly pro-Catholic Anglesey at the turn of the year.49 Nevertheless, the O’Gorman Mahon and Steele were among the Clare delegates appointed in January 1829, when the county’s Catholics again mustered in strength, to accompany O’Connell to Westminster. He, however, agreed to postpone any attempt to take his seat: initially in deference to those of his constituents who wished to renew their petition against his return, and again the following month, emancipation having been announced in the king’s speech, in line with the Whigs’ request that he should avoid disrupting the passage of the ensuing bill.50

After William Leake had tried and succeeded in obtaining leave, 5, 9 Feb., the previous year’s hostile petition was again presented by George Anthony Legh Keck, 10 Feb., and one in O’Connell’s support was brought up, 20 Feb., while another was deemed to have arrived too late, 26 Feb. 1829. The subsequent committee, appointed on 3 Mar., which largely confined itself to the question of whether O’Connell was eligible as a Catholic, unanimously found in his favour, 6 Mar., proving him right to have been optimistic about it.51 A pro-Catholic petition from the county was presented, 10 Mar., but the Protestant nobility, gentry, clergymen and freeholders had their petitions against relief and for a £50 Irish county franchise brought up, 13, 20 Mar.52 O’Bryen denied that he was interested in the possibility of standing at this time and nothing came of a rumour that O’Connell was to receive a judgeship in exchange for Vesey Fitzgerald, who in fact came in for Newport, being allowed to resume his former seat.53 Conscious that he would be unable to persuade the soon-to-be-disfranchised 40s. freeholders to rebel again, O’Connell, who was accused of cowardice and of having not paid his election bills, ruled out resigning his seat in order to contest Clare as a properly qualified candidate, which he would have been entitled to do after the passage of the Emancipation Act in mid-April. Since he did not in the end retreat to a borough and was refused permission by the Commons to take his seat in May 1829 (the writ being moved on the 21st), the county, with his colleague proving almost entirely inactive, remained virtually unrepresented that session.54

The ensuing by-election was delayed to allow for the implementation of the Irish Franchise Act. Under its provisions, the 7,723 40s. tenants (as registered on 1 Jan. 1829) were disfranchised and the 800-900 £50 and £20 freeholders, whose numbers remained steady, were joined, after a flurry of O’Connellite activity that summer, by over 650 £10 voters (raising the electorate to 1,604 by the beginning of the following year).55 O’Connell, who immediately offered again by issuing his so-called ‘address of the 100 promises’, 25 May 1829, confidently expected to win by a margin of three to one over any opponent. Other possible candidates included Vesey Fitzgerald, who was briefly put in requisition; Macnamara, who would have preferred Vesey Fitzgerald but deferred to O’Connell; Smith O’Brien, whose vindictive and inaccurate address provoked a challenge from Steele; Crofton Moore Vandeleur, who had succeeded his father late the previous year; and one or other of the Conynghams (but presumably Lord Albert, as Francis had long since replaced his late elder brother as Member for Donegal). Yet no one persisted except the Dublin barrister and eccentric Orangeman Talbot (Toby) Glascock, against whom O’Connell, fearing physical attack, initiated legal proceedings.56 Like the O’Gorman Mahon, whom he summoned to ‘once again "ride on the whirlwind and direct the storm"’, O’Connell hoped for a renewed struggle as ‘a contest in Clare would rouse all the dormant passions and give an energy to opposition which would not be easily appeased’, and, according to his son John, ‘all the canvassing and polling arrangements were made as punctually and particularly as though a desperate contest were imminent’, which probably of itself lessened the risk of being challenged.57 In the absence of all the leading gentlemen, O’Connell, who was again proposed by the O’Gorman Mahon and Steele, spoke for restoring the 40s. franchise, parliamentary reform, repeal of the Union, abolition of the Irish Vestry and Subletting Acts and other desired improvements for Ireland, and was returned unopposed, 30 July 1829.58

As Wellington had instructed, the heavy military presence prevented any outbreak of disturbances and Lord Grey’s son Charles Grey*, who witnessed the proceedings with his regiment, commented that, despite his usual bluster, O’Connell, who styled himself a ‘Benthamite’, was ‘very well disposed to be quiet and conciliatory’, partly with a view to winning over the landlords.59 This was a forlorn hope, particular in relation to the O’Briens, whom O’Connell had approached for support, threatening that ‘they may live to regret a refusal’. Infuriated that Lucius O’Brien and Smith O’Brien had failed to fulfil an apparent promise to vote in his favour in the House (on 18 May), during canvassing he denounced his colleague for having done nothing for Clare and on the hustings he pledged to attempt to open Ennis borough, so creating a heated, if short-lived, row.60 Yet, in his haste and anxiety to secure his re-election, O’Connell also sowed the seeds of dissension within his own ranks. He had publicly suggested that Macnamara should replace Lucius O’Brien and had privately urged the O’Gorman Mahon, who had already informed the more reluctant Macnamara of his ambitions, ‘to attend to what I say to you and I will see you representing this county’, but he can hardly have expected that both of them, having reiterated their liberal principles on the hustings, should issue addresses promising to stand at the next opportunity, 1 Aug. 1829. He poured scorn on the O’Gorman Mahon’s pretensions, which were believed to be unrealistic, and, having broken with him, he maintained the impression, including by an address dated 16 Jan. 1830, that he would himself offer again for Clare.61

At Macnamara’s instigation, the county met to approve resolutions against the increased Irish stamp and spirit duties, 2 June, and the ensuing petition, with another for alteration of the grand jury laws, was presented, 2 July 1830, by one or both of the O’Brien brothers, who had been criticized locally for their apparent indifference on this question.62 By that time, Macnamara, whose son Francis Macnamara† believed O’Connell was manoeuvring to keep him out, and the O’Gorman Mahon, who sought to overcome the disadvantage of being in London by promoting financial relief for those suffering from the prevailing agricultural distress, had again both issued addresses promising to stand at the general election that summer, and Steele, who claimed to have effected a reconciliation between the O’Gorman Mahon and O’Connell, continued to canvass strenuously for the latter.63 As well as these three, of whom the determined Macnamara was said to have won the backing of the most influential territorial interests, Lucius O’Brien offered with government (and Conyngham’s) support and it was considered possible that the gentry would ask Vesey Fitzgerald to stand, so the friends of O’Connell (who at one point contemplated making a secret deal with Vesey Fitzgerald to ensure their joint success) warned him that by persisting he might jeopardize the return of a Liberal for the second seat and could himself be at risk of defeat.64 He continued to believe that Macnamara had promised to act neutrally towards him, but when Macnamara stuck to the terms of an earlier arrangement - whereby O’Connell had accepted his support in 1829 in exchange for promising to make way for him at a later date - and even declared that he would make public O’Connell’s written statement to this effect, he was forced to withdraw to county Waterford.65 On 18 June 1830 the O’Gorman Mahon, apparently smarting at his erstwhile friend’s failure to honour a similar agreement, provoked an ugly clash between his procession and one led by O’Connell, who announced his withdrawal in Ennis that day, but urged his supporters to vote for his former coadjutor.66

On the hustings, 10 Aug. 1830, Lucius O’Brien, proposed by Crofton Vandeleur, emphasized his Tory credentials, but Macnamara (nominated by Andrew Finucane of Ennistymon House) and the O’Gorman Mahon (by Burton Bindon of Curranroe) both agreed to Nicholas Purcell O’Gorman’s proffered pledges for tax reductions, reform and the introduction of poor laws to Ireland. On the 14th Sir Edward O’Brien, protesting angrily against the proceedings, was refused permission to enter the contest, in which his son trailed throughout, and nothing came of the suggestion that Francis Macnamara would become a security for his father, but William Richard Mahon and Bindon were allowed to poll a few votes each on the 16th, presumably on behalf of the O’Gorman Mahon, who soon again addressed the county in his own extraordinary style.67 The two anti-government candidates, who probably shared many split voters, were therefore returned after a week-long poll. According to one report they incurred £6,800 in costs, but it seems more likely that the penurious Macnamara, who had apparently avoided coalescing with his colleague, merely paid the usual expenses of about £1,000, while the well-to-do O’Gorman Mahon, who rapidly lost popularity by rejecting all financial claims upon him and neglecting his parliamentary duties, was perhaps liable for at least £8,000.68 Lucius O’Brien, or his father, spent at least £500 and probably over £800, while another £1,000 went on their subsequent petition.69 This, in the name of Philip Casey of Seafield and alleging bribery and corruption against the O’Gorman Mahon, was presented, 15 Nov. 1830. O’Connell thought him badly treated by the committee, which was appointed on 25 Feb., but the evidence of monetary payments and physical intimidation was overwhelming, and he was duly unseated early the following month.70 A county petition in favour of parliamentary reform was presented by Macnamara, 21 Mar. 1831.71

Amid considerable unrest, which caused the magistrates to urge the application of the Insurrection Act and prompted Anglesey, the reinstated lord lieutenant, and Edward Smith Stanley*, his chief secretary, to be concerned about another contest taking place there at such a time, there was another bout of election fever in March 1831.72 As the erratic O’Gorman Mahon was prohibited from standing again in that Parliament, he briefly put up his brother William as a locum, but, strangely short of money, he withdrew him in the face of O’Connell’s eventual determination to start his son Maurice. It was reported that Vesey Fitzgerald would be nominated, but in fact it was Sir Edward O’Brien, offering as a resident landlord and ostensible reformer, who belatedly re-entered the fray.73 In lacklustre proceedings, 21 Mar., the indisposed Sir Edward, proposed by Sir Augustine Fitzgerald, was represented by his son Lucius as a moderate supporter of the Grey ministry’s reform bill, and the untalented Maurice O’Connell, nominated by Steele, pledged for reform, repeal and the abolition of various detested pieces of Irish legislation. The highlight of the proceedings was the quarrel, over the recent committee evidence, between Smith O’Brien and William Mahon, which culminated in a bloodless duel. Maurice O’Connell, whom the Tory Clare Journal considered a ludicrous stripling compared to the experienced representative of an established landed family, received nearly two-thirds of the 502 votes polled (assuming O’Brien’s total was 177 not 127) and was declared elected two days later. Macnamara, who had promised to remain neutral, was surprised that Sir Edward, who confessed himself sick of electioneering agitation, had not exploited his resources more fully, his expenses being not much in excess of £1,000; but Anglesey, who thought young O’Connell’s return unpopular, rightly judged old O’Brien’s career to be finished.74 The lord lieutenant, who wished to examine the disturbed condition of Clare for himself, was presented with an address from the county in Ennis, 6 Apr., and the Irish administration’s refusal to resort to the Insurrection Act was discussed in a bitter Commons debate, initiated by Smith O’Brien, 13 Apr. 1831, when Maurice O’Connell made a controversial maiden speech.75

Following his visit, Anglesey reported to Lord Melbourne, the home secretary, in April 1831 that ‘the system of outrage prevailing in the county of Clare does not appear ... to be connected with any party or political objects’. Although determined to clamp down on the disturbances, he did not wish to be driven to anything desperate on account of the forthcoming general election and later considered that the ‘frightful’ state of Clare was not worsened by the expected contest there.76 Yet, as Daniel O’Connell informed the Castle authorities, in a bid to further his son’s chances, the O’Gorman Mahon, who offered again, was implicated in the excesses perpetrated by the Terry Alts, or Catholic agrarian rioters, including the issuing of threatening notices to, and the exaction of promissory oaths from, numerous freeholders.77 Macnamara, who was usually (but not invariably) reckoned to have the safest chance of the three, did not canvass, but Maurice O’Connell, assisted by his father, who himself tried to court the Terry Alts, and the O’Gorman Mahon, who quarrelled with a scandalously outspoken Steele on this subject, were much in evidence.78 Macnamara, proposed by Finucane, demanded a poll after apparently losing on the show of hands to Maurice O’Connell, nominated by Steele, and the O’Gorman Mahon, reintroduced by Denis Canny of Clonmoney, but he led throughout the subsequent five-day poll and was returned with Maurice O’Connell after the O’Gorman Mahon, whose brother polled one vote, had retired.79

As Tom Macaulay* commented of the string of abortive duels that ensued, Macnamara having been provoked by the O’Gorman Mahon and Maurice O’Connell by William Mahon: ‘What fools, by the bye, those Irish patriots and heroes in the county of Clare have been making of themselves - challenging each other, challenging each other’s seconds, first cousins and second cousins, and never fighting’.80 O’Connell, who had failed in his attempt to quiet Clare during the election, acted professionally for the accused at the special commission in June 1831, when 119 convictions, including 21 capital ones, were obtained.81 Raising this in conversation with the lord lieutenant that month, O’Connell observed that it had ‘struck great terror into the people there’, but Anglesey stressed his determination that, the gentry having clearly failed to maintain their authority, government had to restore order before any concessions or relief could be offered.82 By the following month the county was tranquil and, irritated by the frequent disparaging references to his constituency, Macnamara lamented in the Commons, 25 Aug., that ‘Clare should always be brought in as at the head of everything wrong’.83 A petition from Dillon Massy, as foreman of the grand jury, against the misapplication of expenditure on Irish roads, was brought up by Thomas Spring Rice, 18 Oct. 1831.84

Later that year Vesey Fitzgerald, who now sat for Ennis but was soon to inherit his mother’s peerage, took up residence in the county as its lord lieutenant.85 Daniel O’Connell was then afraid that he would ‘organize the return of two Tories’, but by the time of the following general election, he expected at least one Repealer to be elected ‘for Clare - vile Clare I call it, corrupted as it has been by that bad man Mahon’.86 He failed to secure the re-election of Maurice, who instead came in for Tralee, but managed to exclude the O’Gorman Mahon in favour of the Repealer Cornelius O’Brien of Birchfield, whom he had had in mind at the previous contest. In December 1832, when there were 2,518 registered electors (up from 1,802 the previous year), Macnamara, whose like-minded son Francis was elected for Ennis, and Cornelius O’Brien, who was related to the future Limerick Members of the same surname, were returned as Repealers after a contest against two Conservatives.87 They sat together until 1847, when Lucius O’Brien was re-elected as a Protectionist for one Parliament, but in 1852, when Macnamara retired, Cornelius O’Brien regained his seat in tandem with Sir Augustine’s half-brother Sir John Forster Fitzgerald.

Author: Stephen Farrell


For its full representative history, see Kieran Sheedy, Clare Elections (1993).

  • 1. Dublin Evening Post, 26 Mar. 1831 (correcting the ‘127’ given in Parliamentary Election Results in Ireland, 1801-1922 ed. B.M. Walker, 45.
  • 2. NLI, Smith O’Brien mss 427/141; S. Lewis, Top. Dict. of Ireland (1837), i. 329-35; Hist. Irish Parl. ii. 197-200.
  • 3. Derby mss 920 Der (14) 122/5, Smith O’Brien to Smith Stanley, 15 June 1831.
  • 4. NLI, Vesey Fitzgerald mss 7858, pp. 58, 234; Oldfield, Rep. Hist. (1816), vi. 222; Peep at Both Houses (1820), 20; F.B. Hamilton, Picture of Parliament (1831), 24; HP Commons, 1790-1820, ii. 632-4; A.P.W. Malcomson, John Foster, 340.
  • 5. Add. 37299, f. 271; 40296, ff. 22, 23, 45, 46, 70-72; 40297, f. 52; 40298, ff. 7, 8.
  • 6. PP (1824), xxi. 675; Vesey Fitzgerald mss 7857, pp. 57, 120, 123; Add. 38458, f. 298; General Advertiser or Limerick Gazette, 7, 17 Mar. 1820.
  • 7. Dublin Evening Post, 5, 19, 29 Feb.; Dublin Weekly Reg. 12, 26 Feb.; NLI, Inchiquin mss T23/2972, O’Brien to wife, 16, 17, 21 Feb.; NLI, Stacpoole Kenny mss 18889 (8), W. to J. Macnamara, 24 Feb. 1820; Vesey Fitzgerald mss 7858, pp. 68, 171; Harewood mss WYL 250/8/27, Canning to wife, 6 Apr. 1824.
  • 8. Dublin Weekly Reg. 25 Mar.; Vesey Fitzgerald mss 7857, pp. 117, 247; 7858, pp. 110, 120; Sheedy, 127-9.
  • 9. Dublin Weekly Reg. 20 Jan., 10 Feb. 1821.
  • 10. Dublin Evening Post, 16 Aug. 1821.
  • 11. Ibid. 24 Jan. 1822.
  • 12. Ibid. 9 Apr., 4 June, 6, 9 July; Inchiquin mss T24/2976, O’Brien to wife, 11, 13 Apr., 8 May; 2977, same to same, 1, 3, 7, 18, 25, 29 June 1822.
  • 13. Dublin Evening Post, 7, 18, 30 Jan. 1823.
  • 14. CJ, lxxviii. 81, 368; lxxxi. 386; The Times, 6 June 1823, 27 May 1826.
  • 15. Dublin Evening Post, 30 Mar., 6 Apr. 1824, 30 July, 2 Aug.; The Times, 2 Mar. 1825; CJ, lxxx. 140.
  • 16. O. MacDonagh, Hereditary Bondsman, 213, 214.
  • 17. Add. 40322, ff. 43, 48, 57, 58, 66, 71, 76.
  • 18. Add. 37302, f. 350; Hants RO, Calthorpe mss 26M62/F/C642; Conyngham mss (History of Parliament Aspinall transcripts), Wellesley to Conyngham, 19 Jan. 1824; Inchiquin mss T24/3625, O’Brien to wife, 4, 7, 14 Mar.; 2979, same to same, 30 Mar.; 3626, same to same, 17 Apr., 15 July 1825.
  • 19. Dublin Evening Post, 9 Sept. 1824; Harewood mss 87, O’Brien to Canning, 28 Oct. 1825; O’Connell Corresp. ii. 845.
  • 20. Dublin Evening Post, 20 Apr., 15 June; Limerick Chron. 10 June; Inchiquin mss T24/3627, O’Brien to wife, 26 Apr., 2, 6, 11, 12, 15, 16, 18, 29, 30 May 1826.
  • 21. Freeman’s Jnl. 27 May, 7 June; Dublin Evening Post, 15, 27, 29 June 1826; PP (1825), xxii. 94.
  • 22. Add. 40322, f. 158; Dublin Evening Post, 22, 29 June; Limerick Chron. 28 June 1826; Sheedy, 135-8.
  • 23. Dublin Evening Post, 18 July, 15 Aug., 5 Oct. 1826.
  • 24. Ibid. 15, 17 Mar. 1827; O’Connell Corresp. iii. 1364, 1372-4; MacDonagh, 233, 234.
  • 25. Lansdowne mss.
  • 26. CJ, lxxxii. 486, 487, 524; The Times, 24 May, 7 June 1827.
  • 27. O’Connell Corresp. iii. 1404, 1414.
  • 28. Dublin Evening Post, 19 Apr. 1828.
  • 29. This and following paragraphs draw on accounts in R.L. Sheil, Sketches of Irish Bar (1854), ii. 265-314; T. Wyse, Hist. Sketch of Late Catholic Association (1829), i. 369-400; Ann. Reg. (1828), Hist. pp. 123-9; Rev. P. White, Hist. Clare, 335-41; F. O’Ferrall, Catholic Emancipation, 188-200; W. Hinde, Catholic Emancipation, 64-76; MacDonagh, 248-56; Sheedy, 142-52.
  • 30. Clare Jnl. 5, 19, 23 June; Dublin Evening Post, 24, 26, 28 June; Add. 40235, ff. 59, 64, 79; 51567, Anglesey to Holland, 20, 23 June, 1 July 1828; Sheil, ii. 268-71; O’Connell Corresp. viii. 3206, 3207a; Peel Mems. i. 131-2, 136, 137; Smith O’Brien mss 426/9-11; R. Davis, Revolutionary Imperialist, 28-30.
  • 31. Add. 40397, ff. 103, 113; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1467; viii. 3409.
  • 32. Joseph Haverty’s group portrait of ‘O’Connell and his Contemporaries: The Clare Election, 1828’ is reproduced in Hist. Ireland, v. 4 (1997), 27.
  • 33. D. Gwynn, O’Gorman Mahon, 40-46, 53-57, and ‘O’Connell and his Lieutenants’, Studies, xviii (1929), 264-70; G. Owens, ‘A Moral Insurrection’, Irish Hist. Stud. xxx (1997), 521, 528; O’Connell Corresp. iii. 1463, 1490.
  • 34. F. O’Ferrall, ‘Daniel O’Connell ... Changing Images’, in Ireland: Art into History ed. R. Gillespie and B. P. Kennedy, 96-97; D. Gwynn, ‘Bishop Doyle and Catholic Emancipation’, Studies, xvii (1928), 366, 367; W.J. Fitzpatrick, Life of Dr. Doyle, ii. 77.
  • 35. Add. 40322, ff. 263-9; Peel Mems. i. 107-9.
  • 36. Add. 40325, ff. 68, 76, 81, 85; 40334, ff. 205, 207, 213, 215, 218, 221, 223; 40397, ff. 115-18; PRO NI, Anglesey mss D619/26C, pp. 47-51; 32A/2/67, 68, 71-76; 33C, pp. 81, 88-91; Mq. of Anglesey, One-Leg, 200-1, 372; Peel Mems. i. 109-13, 133-8.
  • 37. Add. 40334, ff. 211, 299, 301; H.R. Addison, Recollections of Irish Police Magistrate, 68, 69; D. Griffin, Life of Gerald Griffin, 242-4; Taylor Pprs. 231; K.T. Hoppen, Elections, Politics, and Society in Ireland, 423, 424.
  • 38. Add. 40334, f. 207; The Times, 28, 30 June, 2 July 1828; Sheil, ii. 284; Addison, 68; Sheedy, 146-8.
  • 39. Clare Jnl. 3, 7 July; Dublin Evening Post, 3, 5, 8 July 1828; Anglesey mss 32A/2/77, 79-82, 85, 88; Sheil, ii. 289-302; MacDonagh, 6, 252; Ellenborough Diary, i. 157-60; Ashley, Palmerston, i. 181, 182.
  • 40. Clare Jnl. 10, 14 July; Dublin Evening Post, 8, 10, 12 July 1828; Sheil, ii. 302-14.
  • 41. R. uí Ógáin, Immortal Dan, 31, 32, 75, 76, 86, 87; Sheedy, 152; O’Ferrall, Catholic Emancipation, 219.
  • 42. Dublin Evening Post, 2 Aug.; Clare Jnl. 15 Dec. 1828; Gwynn, O’Gorman Mahon, 58-61; J.A. Reynolds, Catholic Emancipation Crisis in Ireland, 61, 63, 75, 76, 102; O’Ferrall, Catholic Emancipation, 178, 198.
  • 43. Add. 40397, f. 133; Wyse, i. 394.
  • 44. CJ, lxxxiii. 547-51.
  • 45. G.I.T. Machin, Catholic Question in English Politics, 122.
  • 46. Anglesey mss 33A/55; Add. 40322, f. 270; Add. 40325, ff. 87, 94; Peel Mems. i. 106, 113-15, 124, 138-45; Parker, Peel, ii. 99; Wyse, i. 393.
  • 47. Wellington mss WP1/950/1; 951/47; Peel Mems. i. 116-23; MacDonagh, 255, 257.
  • 48. P. Coleman, ‘Shanagolden Celebrates O’Connell’s Victory’, N. Munster Antiquarian Jnl. xli (2001), 101, 102; Owens, 513-15, 540, 541.
  • 49. Dublin Evening Mail, 22, 24, 27 Oct., 8 Dec. 1828; Warder, 21 Jan. 1829; Anglesey mss 26D, pp. 10-33; Wellington mss WP1/961/27; 964/12; 965/15; 966/13; 968/14, 18, 26, 31; 969/7; 1016/5.
  • 50. Clare Jnl. 22 Jan., 2, 23 Feb.; Dublin Evening Post, 29 Jan., 10 Feb. 1829.
  • 51. CJ, lxxxiv. 3, 4, 15-19, 62, 96, 106, 107; The Times, 5-7 Mar. 1829; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1525-9, 1532.
  • 52. CJ, lxxxiv. 121, 132, 155.
  • 53. Clare Jnl. 5, 16 Feb., 30 Mar. 1829.
  • 54. O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1546, 1572; PRO NI, Primate Beresford mss T2772/2/6/17; Add. 40308, f. 170; CJ, lxxxiv. 325, 326.
  • 55. PP (1830), xxix. 464; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1566, 1584; Sheedy, 152-4.
  • 56. Wyse, ii. p. cccxxxiv; Dublin Evening Post, 21, 26, 28, 30 May, 13, 16, 18 June; Clare Jnl. 25, 28 May, 1, 8, 11, 14, 18, 22, 25, 29 June, 2, 6, 9, 13, 16, 27 July, 7 Dec.; Smith O’Brien mss 18310 (1), Smith O’Brien to Anne O’Brien [June] 1829; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1561, 1567, 1569, 1575, 1577, 1584; v. 2173; Gwynn, O’Gorman Mahon, 83, 84, 97, 98; Davis, 35-38; Sheedy, 156, 157.
  • 57. Gwynn, O’Gorman Mahon, 84, 85, 99; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1581, 1585; J. O’Connell, Recollections and Experiences, ii. 86.
  • 58. Clare Jnl. 30 July, 3 Aug.; Dublin Evening Post, 1 Aug. 1829.
  • 59. Wellington mss WP1/1035/1, 13, 32; 1037/5; Grey mss GRE/B22/1/72; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1594; viii. 3413.
  • 60. Stacpoole Kenny mss 18889 (13), W. to J. Macnamara, 24 May 1829; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1581, 1593, 1595, 1599.
  • 61. O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1585, 1593, 1601, 1629, 1642; Gwynn, O’Gorman Mahon, 100; NLI, Monteagle mss 549, Spring Rice to Vesey Fitzgerald, 23 Sept.; Clare Jnl. 3 Aug., 1, 5 Oct.; Dublin Evening Post, 8 Aug., 10 Sept. 1829, 16 Jan. 1830.
  • 62. Clare Jnl. 17, 20, 31 May, 3 June 1830; CJ, lxxxv. 606, 607.
  • 63. Dublin Evening Post, 13 May, 5, 10 June, 8 July; Clare Jnl. 3 June, 5 July; Stacpoole Kenny mss 18888 (5), F. to J. Macnamara, 2, 8, 9 July 1830; Add. 40338, f. 209; Gwynn, O’Gorman Mahon, 115-18.
  • 64. Stacpoole Kenny mss 18889 (14), W. to J. Macnamara [n.d.], 30 June, 11 July; Clare Jnl. 5, 12, 15, 26, 29 July; NAI, Leveson Gower letter bks. Leveson Gower to Hart, 7 July 1830; Wellington mss WP1/1124/11; 1130/22; Add. 40323, f. 153; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1668, 1670, 1678, 1679, 1689.
  • 65. Clare Jnl. 5, 22 July; Dublin Evening Post, 8 July; Weekly Waterford Chron. 17, 31 July 1830; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1679, 1684, 1687, 1689, 1690, 1692.
  • 66. Clare Jnl. 19 July 1830; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1696; viii. 3420; Gwynn, O’Gorman Mahon, 112-14; W. Fagan, Life and Times of O’Connell, ii. 49.
  • 67. Clare Jnl. 12, 16, 19 Aug., 2 Sept.; Dublin Evening Post, 14, 17, 19 Aug. 1830; Sheedy, 162-4.
  • 68. Weekly Waterford Chron. 21 Aug.; Stacpoole Kenny mss 18888 (5), W. to J. Macnamara, 9 Sept.; 18889 (15), same to same, 4 Nov.; 18891 (10), Woulfe to same, 7 Sept.; Clare Jnl. 30 Sept., 11 Oct., 25 Nov. 1830; Gwynn, O’Gorman Mahon, 119-26, 133-7.
  • 69. Inchiquin mss T14/4893, 4924; Sheedy, 832.
  • 70. CJ, lxxxvi. 67, 68, 298, 299, 340; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1778, 1780, 1781; viii. 3424; Clare Jnl. 3, 10, 14 Mar. 1831.
  • 71. CJ, lxxxvi. 415.
  • 72. Clare Jnl. 28 Feb.; Derby mss 119/2, Smith Stanley to Anglesey, 10 Mar.; 121/1/2, Gosset to former, 10, 16, 18, 22 Mar. 1831; Anglesey mss 29B, pp. 70-74; 31D/23, 28, 29.
  • 73. Clare Jnl. 28 Feb., 10, 14, 17 Mar.; Dublin Evening Post, 19, 22 Mar.; Stacpoole Kenny mss 18889 (16), W. to J. Macnamara, 2, 11, 13 Mar. 1831; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1780-2, 1787, 1790; ‘My Darling Danny’ ed. E.I. Bishop, 49.
  • 74. Clare Jnl. 21, 24 Mar.; Dublin Evening Post, 24, 26 Mar.; Stacpoole Kenny mss 18889 (16), W. to J. Macnamara, 2, 13 [21], 23, 26 Mar. 1831; Anglesey mss 28C, pp. 89-91; Sheedy, 832-4.
  • 75. Clare Jnl. 4, 7, 11, 14, 21 Apr. 1831; Sheedy, 165, 166.
  • 76. Anglesey mss 27B, pp. 19-23; 28C, pp. 109, 116; 29B, pp. 79-85.
  • 77. Grey mss, Smith Stanley to Grey, 9, 14 May; Derby mss 117/5, replies, 11, 18 May; 125/12, O’Connell to Gosset, 6 May; Dublin Evening Post, 10 May 1831; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1800, 1805, 1808, 1809, 1811; v. 2121, 2122; J.S. Donnelly, ‘Terry Alt Movement’, Hist. Ireland, ii. 4 (1994), 30-34.
  • 78. Freeman’s Jnl. 26, 28 Apr., 16 May; Clare Jnl. 28 Apr., 9 May; TNA HO100/238, ff. 152, 153; Stacpoole Kenny mss 18889 (18), W. to J. Macnamara, 2 May; Grey mss, Smith Stanley to Grey, 21 May 1831; ‘My Darling Danny’, 55.
  • 79. Clare Jnl. 16, 19, 23 May; Dublin Evening Post, 17, 21 May 1831; Sheedy, 168, 169.
  • 80. Dublin Evening Post, 21, 24, 26 May 1831; O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1811, 1813, 1814; Macaulay Letters, ii. 30.
  • 81. O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1815, 1817; Grey mss, Smith Stanley to Grey, 27 May; Clare Jnl. 2, 13, 20 June; Dublin Evening Post, 7 June 1831; Donnelly, 34, 35.
  • 82. Anglesey mss 31D/41.
  • 83. Derby mss 125/4, Barrington to Smith Stanley, 12 July 1831.
  • 84. CJ, lxxxvi. 931.
  • 85. Anglesey mss 31D/59; Clare Jnl. 3 Nov. 1831.
  • 86. O’Connell Corresp. iv. 1853, 1921.
  • 87. Stacpoole Kenny mss 18889 (18), W. to J. Macnamara, 21 Apr. 1831; Clare Jnl. 26 Nov., 10, 17, 20, 24 Dec. 1832; PP (1831), xvi. 198.