The meeting on that day, the evening scene at Carrick, and the arrival in Waterford, were relied on by the English minister, as a perfect justification for the suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act. Others and more powerful ones influenced the Cabinet; and foremost among these was the great meeting at New York, which too clearly evidenced the purpose of America, should the struggle proceed. I had no communication, directly or indirectly, with any of my comrades after that day, save one letter from Mr. O’Brien. This letter had reference solely to my approaching trial, which he signified his wish to be present at. To this letter I replied, informing him that it had been intimated to me that a number of men would assemble, armed, near Nenagh, during the trial; and I besought him to be there for the purpose of preventing an outbreak, which I regarded as disastrous, unprepared as the people then were. Neither the trial nor the meeting took place, and other events shaped our destiny. A few days after the Slievenamon meeting, it was intimated to me that I was to be arrested on a second charge, the exact nature of which was not stated. I could not doubt the accuracy of my information, and being fully determined to preserve my liberty for the coming struggle, which under any circumstances could not be long delayed, I left home on the 22nd day of July, and proceeded through the country to the foot of Slievenamon. Here I took up my quarters at a farmer’s house, where I remained two days and nights, in total ignorance of the circumstances then rapidly hurrying the crisis wherein our fondly cherished hopes were blasted.
[Footnote 8: From the position in which Mr. Carleton is now placed, it may be necessary to say that I do not allude to him.]
[Footnote 9: Since the above was written, I have heard it said that a report, current about the time of Mr. O’Brien’s conviction, had been recently received here. The report was, that I promised Mr. O’Brien to have 50,000 men to meet him; which was his principal inducement to act as he did; and that I not only had not one man, but was myself absent when he came. The absurdity of the rumour was sufficiently proved by the fact that Mr. O’Brien did not come to me, or my part of the country, in the first instance. The real truth is that I never directly or indirectly, by word or letter, counselled the outbreak. Nay, more: I was as ignorant of Mr. O’Brien’s purpose