North America and Home Rule

At the end of 1887, O’Connor Power sailed to New York to promote Home Rule. He spent a year touring North America.

The Evening Telegram, St John’s,  March 31, 1888

 A Friend of Confederation.

O’Connor Power pays a tribute to Canada.

His plan of settling the Irish question.

The paper reports that William O’Brien highly approved of the Dominion’s system of Government, but the editor of United Ireland is not the only prominent Irish leader and patriot who entertains a very high opinion of the Canadian system.

[O’Connor Power has written] ‘a lengthy letter on the Irish question in the New York Herald of February 18, which exactly coincides with what has been advanced by Mr O’Brien.  O’Connor Power argues strongly in favour of the adoption of Home Rule on the Confederation plan. He quotes instances where this has succeeded in creating great empires without destroying small nationalities. He refers to the success of the Federal plan in Germany, Switzerland, the United States and Canada.  In the course of the letter he says: – ‘Some of the most experienced politicians in Canada prophesied all manner of civil strife in the working of the act of Confederation before its adoption in 1867. Their speeches are contained in a volume of more than a thousand pages .’ These sentiments from the pen of one of Ireland’s most devoted patriots strangely contrast with the utterances of those pale green sons of the Emerald Isle who moved that resolution at St Patrick’s Hall* on the 17th instant.

*The Benevolent Irish Society, St John’s, Newfoundland, was founded in 1806.  Membership was open to Irish born men and those of Irish descent.

See That Irishman, Part Four, Taking a Stand, pp. 162-166.