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Macken Fight

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Surname/tag: Ireland
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This is one of the most well known events in Fermanagh's history being the most serious sectarian clash of its time, which occurred on the evening of July 13 1829, just a few months after the passing of the Catholic Emancipation Act (April 1829). Four Protestants were murdered and two others attacked. Reports indicate 19-21 Catholics were charged. One, Ignatius McMannus from Cornacrea (Kinawley) was hanged, one found not guilty and 19 transported to Australia aboard the ship Hercules II, in 1830. We are aiming to progressively add the profiles of all those involved.

Further information can be found on the free space page of source material relating to the CASSIDY brothers, who were tried and transported at the same time. Refer to the 'People or Pages' list below.

Further Reading

ENNISKILLEN Thursday, July 16, 1829.

(Extracted from http://mcgovernstullytrasnaandbeyond.wordpress.com/the-macken-fight/ - abridged from the Fermanagh Reporter)

On Monday last, a vast crowd of persons assembled at Derrylin, about seven miles from this town. Lord Enniskillen repaired to the spot, but his efforts to make them disperse, aided by the priest, proved ineffectual. In the evening they marched from Derrylin to Knockninny, and a false alarm being given to an Orange Lodge, that Lord Enniskillen and the police were attacked, a few of them sallied forth, as they supposed, to his Lordship's assistance, When they came near a place called Macken they observed a crowd on a hill, and a man near them, who was known to the Protestant party, one of whom advanced to him, and lifting his hands, said, “ Merciful God, are we not all fellow Christians, and why will we kill each other ?”—they begged of the R. Catholic to make the multitude retire, and he consented, and was, when he would go to the top of the hill, to give a signal to that effect - but the treacherous man! he gave a contrary signal, and beckoned them to come on, when abou. 800 armed with pikes, scythes on poles, pitchforks, &c. &c. attacked the Protestant party, killed poor Mealy on the spot; who had advanced to make peace, and wounded seven others mortally, 3 of whom are since dead, and the remainder despaired of. The names of the persons dead are Mealy, Price, Robinson, and Scarlott. It is reported that a considerable number are killed and wounded on the opposite side.

The rebels have, to the amount of some thousands, formed an encampment on Benaughlen mountain, and reinforcements of the rebels, we under­stand, are pouring in from the counties of Leitrim and Cavan.. The whole country is in a state of alarm; the Roman Catholic houses are left de­solate, the mi!ch cattle are going wild with the pain of their milk, and no person to milk them.— The military and police have been out continually since Monday. The country people are afraid to stir out, and our markets have not been supplied with potatoes for the last two days. All is consternation and alarm, and the yeomanry are pa­trolling the roads. The military are at present watching the motions of the insurgents who appear to retreat when the military advance.

Fermanagh Reporter Office 8 am Thursday Morning

A rumour is in circulation that the, multitudes (consisting of about 5000) said to be encamped, are whole families of men, women, and children, who have fled from their habitations in consequence of a report that the Protestants were de­termined to rise en masse to revenge the death of their friends ; but confidence is considerably restored from the fact that between 7 and 8000 armed Protestants, with the military and police are patrolling the roads in the vicinity of the Mountains, and 'not one outrage has been com­mitted on Roman Catholics or their property,., This town is now quite tranquil—part of the army have returned.

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Categories: Macken Fight