Brother Allen Deposit (O’Connell Papers)

Repository: Cork City and County Archives

Identity Statement

TitleBrother Allen Deposit (O'Connell Papers)
Archive ReferenceIE CCCA/U004
Web Link to this Entry
Creation Dates1772-1895 (1952)
Level of DescriptionFonds
Extent Medium13 items


Creator(s): Jerry McCrohan Diarmuid Ua Mathgámhna John Burke Coppinger McMahon Morgan John O’Connell Isaac Butt

  • Administrative History ↴

    The collection is artificial, and while some items relate to each other, the principal connection is that they all came from a single donor over a limited period. Many of the items, however, have a connection to the O’Connells of Derrynane, Co Kerry, the family of Daniel O’Connell (1775-1847), ‘The Liberator’, champion of Catholic Emancipation and repeal of the Act of Union between Ireland and Britain.
  • Archival History ↴

    The items comprising this artificial collection were donated by WP Allen, Christian Brothers, O’Connell School, North Richmond Street, Dublin, in late 1974. A correspondence began between Allen and Ann Barry, Archivist, Cork Archives Council, regarding the McCrohan letter (U4/1), and, while searching for this elusive item, Allen came across the other items present, all of which were sent to Barry between September and December 1974, and accessioned in late 1974 and early 1975.
  • Immediate Source Acquisition ↴


Content & Structure

  • Scope & Content: Jerry McCrohan Diarmuid Ua Mathgámhna John Burke Coppinger McMahon Morgan John O’Connell Isaac Butt ↴

    The scope of this collection is mixed and partial, but it relates to many aspects of Irish social and political history in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

    U4/1, a 1777 letter from Jerry McCrohan to Maurice Connell, and including a copy of a legal letter relating to the O’Mahonys of Kilmichael, concerns both the butter trade and commercial and family connections with continental Europe. U4/2 also relates to this O’Mahony family.

    U4/3, a letter to Charles Bianconi from a poet seeking patronage, sheds some light both on his fame and his political outlook, while U4/4 documents the financial difficulties of his son.

    U4/5-7 are connected by reference to the Coppinger family and to property in Co Clare. Morgan John O’Connell inherited lands in Clare from his uncle William Coppinger, and these papers may have come to him with that inheritance.

    U4/8-10 relate to Morgan John O’Connell himself, and particularly to his bankruptcy in 1854. U4/8 relates to his removal from the office of Justice of the Peace for Co Kerry in 1844, perhaps owing to his declining circumstances. U4/9-10 illustrate the bankruptcy process of the time.

    U4/11, a letter to John O’Connell in France in 1848 from Charles Sugrue, Cork, contains fascinating references to the Young Ireland rebellion then underway and Sugrue’s views on it. O’Connell’s financial arrangements and difficulties are also discussed.

    U4/12, a letter from Isaac Butt in 1869 regarding a national meeting involving the Irish Tenant League on the Irish land question, is an important record of the beginning of joint agrarian and national political action in this period.

    Agrarian action, more particularly violence, provides the context for the final item present, a copy of the findings of the inquest into the death of John Twiss, hanged at Cork in 1895 for an agrarian murder. The views of the coroner and jurors reflect their political outlook and their attitude to the Crown’s handing of such cases.

    Many of the items in some measure relate to the O’Connells of Derrynane, Co Kerry, and will be of interest to students of that family and of Daniel O’Connell. The O’Mahony family material, relating to Lt Col Cornelius O’Mahony of the Spanish army, is also of genealogical interest. The records of Morgan John O’Connell and his Coppinger connections complement other Coppinger records held in CCCA. Bianconi, Butt, and Twiss are all figures of interest in different ways, each of them in a sense echoing political themes associated with O’Connell. The political and social interests of Irish Catholics, especially in Cork and Kerry, and their financial difficulties, are recurring themes throughout this varied and significant artificial collection.

  • Appraisal Destruction ↴

    Permanent Retention
  • Arrangement ↴

    The collection was originally arranged and numbered in 1975 following processing of the items in several accessions. It was reviewed in 2012, with the arrangement largely retained, with the following exceptions. Items 5-7, relating to Coppinger interests in Co Clare, were rearranged into chronological order. Items U4/8-10, relating to Morgan John O’Connell, were rearranged into chronological order. Items U4/12 and 13 were reversed in order, the present U4/13, the Twiss inquisition of 1895, being the latest nineteenth century item present.

    U4/1-2 O’Mahony, O’Connell, McCrohan items, 1776-7, 1952
    U4/3-4 Charles Bianconi items, 1843, 1863
    U4/5-7 Coppinger interests in Co Clare, 1772, 1810, 1827
    U4/8-10 Morgan John O’Connell items, 1844, 1854
    U4/11 Charles Sugrue Letter to John O’Connell, 1848
    U4/12 Isaac Butt letter, 1869
    U4/13 Inquisition findings on the death of John Twiss, 1895

Conditions of Access & Use

Access Conditions Open by appointment to those holding a current reader’s ticket
Conditions Governing ReproductionSubject to rules governing reproduction of records of CCCA
Creation Dates1772-1895 (1952)
Level of DescriptionFonds
Extent Medium13 items
Material Language ScriptEnglish
Finding Aids Descriptive list Archive Web Link →

Allied Materials

Related MaterialCCCA: U405 Coppinger of Barryscourt, Letters, 1740-1843 U229 O’Flynn Exham Solicitors Papers (includes many Coppinger items) 89/7 Brother Allen Typescripts (Two bound volumes of typescripts of notes by the donor of U4, Brother Allen, relating to the parishes of Enniskeane and Desertserges and to Catholic Qualification rolls 1775-1800 for Cork City and County) U611 Denny Lane Papers (Lane a leading Young Irelander; his arrest in 1848 mentioned in U4/11) SM621 White Letter, 1906 (referring to Daniel O’Connell and to agrarian unrest and ‘Moonlighting’ in Co Limerick) Elsewhere: National Library of Ireland O’Connell Papers (various manuscripts, including Mss 13646 and Collection List 155) Isaac Butt Papers (various manuscripts, including Ms. 8706) Ms 5911 Brief for the crown in the trial of… John Twiss… 1895 University College Dublin IE UCDA P12 Daniel O’Connell Papers

Descriptive Control Area

Archivist NoteTimmy O’Connor
Rules/ConventionsISAD(G): General International Standard Archival Description. 2nd ed. Ottawa: International Council on Archives, 2000.
Date of DescriptionsJan-12