Page:Life of John Boyle O'Reilly.djvu/368

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forty cities here bigger than any city but London in Great Britain. From the Gulf of Mexico to Canada and from Boston to the Pacific the blood of the people goes out to you, not because you are an aristocrat with an English title, but because you are an Irishman, a patriot, a gentleman with pluck, courage, and sacrificial strength in you. I ask you, sir, do you regret any class you have abandoned to come to the welcome of this pulsing, human, American-liberty-loving blood of the world, instead of a class?

Jolin Breslin, the gallant leader of the Catalpa rescue, died in New York on November 18. To the last hour of his life he remained a firm believer in revolution as the only true remedy for Ireland's wrongs. In his dying utterances the name of his country was constantly on his lips.

On December 2, O'Reilly's life-long friend and comrade in treason, imprisonment, and exile, Corporal Thomas Chambers, died at the Carney Hospital, Boston, a prematurely aged man, whose vitality. had been fatally undermined in the swamps of Dartmoor. "In his case, at least," wrote O'Reilly, "England's vengeance was complete; the rebel's life was turned into a torture, and his earthly career arrested by the deadly seeds of early decay." Chambers was set free when it was seen that he was no longer a danger to the empire. He had spent fourteen years in prison. About six months before his death O'Reilly had him placed in the Carney Hospital, where he received the tenderest care and attention. Of him he said:

I was with him on Saturday night a few hours before he died; he appeared to be unconscious when I stood beside his bed, but he opened his eyes at the touch of my hand, and, though he could not speak, his eyes answered that he recognized me. Another old friend, James Wrenn, of Charlestown, was there, too, and the dying man answered his look also with full recognition. He was wasted to a skeleton. He had suffered horribly for nearly twenty years. When he went to prison he was the happiest and merriest fellow I ever knew. He was young and strong, and he looked at the gloomiest things not only with a smile but a laugh. He was the bravest and tenderest man to others in trouble that I have ever known. Fellow-prisoners soon learned to appreciate this rare and beautiful quality. For two years, while I was in prison in England, he and I were chained together whenever we were moved, find we generally managed to get another rebel, named McCarthy, on