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Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)

Tenant Farmer Meeting


The Carlow Tenant Farmer Meeting

This article first appeared in the BALLINA CHRONICLE

Wednesday, June 20, 1849

On Thursday the above meeting was held at the rear of the Hotel in Burrin-street, on the extensive premises the property of Mrs. Purcell, of Halverstown. We are not acquainted with one resident proprietor who has not during the last six months given the claim put forth at the meeting the utmost attention, and who are not willing, so far as reasonable means will permit, to meet the claims in a spirit of justice and generosity- Mr. Pat Lalor of Tinnekill, prepounded the extravagant opinion, that if the "land of Ireland" were given free to the occupiers they could not sustain themselves.

Mr. Wilson Gray, of the Freeman's Journal, who resided in America for several years, gave a more apt illustration of the consequences of the light of men, by honestly stating, from practical experience, that before the tenants or middle classes even with a fair capital could expect to realise a livelihood, they should become labourers!- in other words, to begin as Irish paupers do in America, with strong bony hands, to work out a living, which may be enjoyed by their posterity! This intelligent gentleman, who travelled through the far West, never held one single prospect for the farmer beyond that which arduous labour opens to every man, whether on the prairie, in the forest, or on his own farm in Ireland.

The Rev. Mr. Maher-A fact which was anything but encouraging to emigrants of small capital, who may be sufficiently foolish to expect to live in America without labour!! Although an enthusiast he would not undertake the responsibility of removing a single man from the country, unless that man had made up his mind, and effected his arrangements calmly and deliberately in his family for emigration.

America is not the best country for the farmer, unless he make up his own mind to face the perils and the hardships of a new position in the wilderness, with a surrounding population going a head ready one day to cultivate Indian corn and the next to cut to California-a population ever restless, ambitious and possessed of the cunning and over-reaching qualities ascribed by Milton to Satan. Against such a people our quiet and unobservant farmers would be no match, for an honest man is a century behind a rogue and a cheat in America.

We have no doubt whatever that the landed proprietary of Ireland will employ every available means to sustain the honest, improving and industrious farmer in his position. The landlord, if upon no other ground but that of self interest, will co-operate with the tenant, and thus check that mania for emigration which has unsettled the public mind. The motto of both will be "live and let live?"---Carlow Sentinel.


Morning Chronicle

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