On the Fenian Prisoners in Manchester

Submitted by libcom on July 25, 2005

The First International Working Men's Association ON THE FENIAN PRISONERS IN MANCHESTER

Memorial of the General Council of the International Working Men's Association November 20, 1867

To the Right Hon. Gathorne-Hardy, Her Majesty's Secretary of State:

The memorial of the undersigned, representing workingmen's associations in all parts of Europe, showeth:

That the execution of the Irish prisoners condemned to death at Manchester will greatly impair the moral influence of England upon the European continent.

The execution of the four prisoners resting upon the same evidence and the same verdict which, by the free pardon of Maguire, have been officially declared, the one false, the other erroneous, will bear the stamp not of a judicial act, but of political revenge. But even if the verdict of the Manchester jury and the evidence it rests upon had not been tainted by the British Government itself, the latter would now have to choose between the bloody-handed practices of old Europe and the magnanimous humanity of the young Transatlantic Republic.

The commutation of the sentence for which we pray will be an act not only of justice, but of political wisdom.

JOHN WESTON, Chairman ROBERT SHAW, secretary for America EUGENE DUPONT, secretary for France KARL MARX, secretary for Germany HERMANN JUNG, secretary for Switzerland PAUL LAFARGUE, secretary for Spain ANTON ZABICKI, secretary for Poland DERKINDEREN, secretary for Holland ALEXANDRE BESSON, secretary for Belgium, J. GEORGE ECCARIUS, general secretary