Page:Life of John Boyle O'Reilly.djvu/322

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yield all kind of fruit that shall be committed thereto. And lastly, the climate most mild and temperate."

Two hundred and fifty years ago, Sir John Davies, another eminent Englishman, wrote about Ireland as follows:

"I have visited all the provinces of that kingdom in sundry journeys and circuits, wherein I have observed the good temperature of the air, the fruitfulness of the soil, the pleasant and commodious seats for habitations, the safe and large ports and havens lying open for traffic into all the west parts of the world; the long inlets of many navigable rivers, and so many great lakes and fresh ponds within the land, as the like are not to be seen in any part of Europe; the rich fishings and wild fowl of all kinds; and, lastly, the bodies and minds of the people endued with extraordinary abilities by nature."

In Brown's "Essays on Trade," published in London in the year 1728, this is the report of Ireland:

"Ireland is in respect of its situation, the number of its commodious harbors, and the natural wealth which it produces, the fittest island to acquire wealth of any in the European seas; for, as by its situation it lies the most commodious for the West Indies, Spain, and the Northern and Eastern countries, so it is not only supplied by nature with all the necessaries of life, but can over and above export large quantities to foreign countries, insomuch that, had it been mistress of its trade, no nation in Europe of its extent could in an equal number of years acquire greater wealth."

"Ireland," says Newenham, writing seventy years ago, on industrial topics, "greatly surpasses her sister country, England, in the aggregate of the endowments of nature England, abounding in wealth beyond any other country in Europe, cannot boast of one natural advantage which Ireland does not possess in a superior degree."

All this has been said about a country that is so poverty-stricken and so unhappy, that the like of it is not seen in any part of the world. I sent reporters to four houses in Boston, a short time ago, to ask how much money they had sold on Ireland during the month of December, and from the 1st of December to the 20th, those four houses had sold over $100,000, in sums averaging $35. Now, in three weeks, four houses in one city sold that much, and I can assure you that there is not a city in the United States, not a town or hamlet, whence that drain is not constantly going away to Ireland. It is going from the mills, from the mines, from the farms, from the shops, from the servant girls. The only advantage from that terrible loss—a loss which must reach from $50,000,000 to $70,000,000 a year, which is the lowest computation you can put on it,—the only value we have in return is in the devoted and affectionate natures that could spare from their earnings so much to their poor relatives in Ireland—for they sent it to save their people from