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Archibald Hamilton Rowan 1751 - 1834

Today I attended the Confirmation of a little grand-niece in a rural parish (Two-Mile-House) in Co. Kildare. I was fascinated by a memorial attached to the wall of the church which read: "Pray Brethern for the repose of the soul of Mathias White late of Mullacash who piously bequeathed two hundred pounds sterling for building this Chapel. Also for the success and long life of Archibald Hamilton Rowan Esq who generously bestowed an acre of ground forever and a handsome donation thereto AD1790. . ."  Who was this, I asked.
Hamilton Rowan was born in London of Irish parents. He attended Cambridge, joined the Grenadiers, travelled to America and returned to Ireland, 1784, where he settled near Naas and joined the United Irishmen  in 1792 and became Sec. of the Society. He was arrested and charged with seditious libel, and sentenced to Kilmainham Gaol where he was visited by Robert Emmet and Theobald Wolfe Tone. He was also befriended by Napper Tandy. He escaped and went to France and then to America before receiving a pardon in 1806. He returned to Ireland and settled on family estate in Co. Down. He died 1834 and was buried in St. Mary's Church, Dublin.
"Rowan was a member of Strand-street Unitarian congregation. He had a tall and commanding person, in which agility, strength, and grace were combined. .. He was a man of a generous, manly, chivalrous disposition, of high principles, and a strong sense of the obligations of truth, justice, and humanity. He loved liberty, and hated oppression. He was steadfast, intrepid, and incorruptible in his public career, a brave and a good Irishman, in the fullest sense of the term, persevering and consistent in his patriotism, the same in youth and age, in the worst of times, as in the better days of his country." (Biographer Drummond) 
[Not to be confused with the great Rowan Hamilton]


'Seditious libel'

Such a 'useful' accusation.

Wonder how many of us they'd arrest for our comments on here, given half a chance? :oS

Your mention of Napper Tandy has now left me with the traditonal song: 'Spanish Lady' as an earworm which will doubtless last all day! :o)

"Poor Ol' Napper Tandy"!

"I met with Napper Tandy, and he took me by the hand
And he said, "How's poor old Ireland, and how does she stand?"
"She's the most distressful country that ever yet was seen
For they're hanging men and women there for the Wearin' o' the Green."

"I've wandered North, and I have wondered South
Through Stoney Batter and Patrick's Close
Up and around, by the Gloucester Diamond
And back by Napper Tandys' house
Auld age has laid her hands on me
Cold as a fire of ashy coals....
But, there is the love of me Spanish Lady, a maid so sweet about the soul

Re: "Poor Ol' Napper Tandy"!

That's the very one :o)

Learned that from an Irish Australian guy named Don Thomson when running Maidstone Folk Club years ago :o)