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Manchester martyrs

Manchester martyrs, 1867. On 18 September an attempt was made to rescue Fenian leaders Thomas Kelly and Timothy Deasy from police custody in Manchester. During the attempt, Police Sergeant Charles Brett was killed, causing strong anti-Irish feeling. Three Fenians, William Allen, Michael Larkin, and Michael O'Brien, were executed for the murder on 23 November. There was widespread indignation in Ireland and the ‘martyrs’, as they became known, were given a public funeral attended by over 60,000 people. The incident did much to raise recruitment to the Irish Republican Brotherhood and increase distrust of the British authorities.

Richard A. Smith

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