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LIMERICK, SATURDAY – In a momentous gathering at the Town Hall today, leaders and citizens of Limerick convened to spearhead the organization of the Irish National Volunteer movement. Presided over by Mayor Aid. P. O’Donovan, the meeting witnessed the participation of prominent figures, including Alderman Joyce, MP.., and Mr T. Lundon, MP.. The purpose of the assembly was to take strategic measures to fortify and advance the cause of the Irish National Volunteer movement, particularly within the city of Limerick.

Acknowledging the commendable efforts of the city’s Volunteer corps, Mayor O’Donovan extended a warm welcome to the attending Members of Parliament, praising their contributions in the House of Commons. Alderman Joyce, MP.., addressing the gathering, emphasized the Irish Party’s commitment to fulfilling the desires of the Irish people. He reflected on the party’s steadfastness in the face of insults and provocations, highlighting their role as the mouthpiece of an organization dedicated to supporting them.

Joyce delved into the historical context, noting the significance of the Parliament Act two years ago, which paved the way for the Home Rule Bill. He asserted that, with the impending enactment of Home Rule, the time was opportune for the National Volunteer movement to take root. Acknowledging the martial spirit of the Irish, he stressed the importance of handling the movement judiciously, ensuring it served the purpose of defence rather than aggression.

Mr T. Lundon, MP.., addressed assertions that Irish Parliamentarians had no right to the Volunteer movement, dismissing such claims. He affirmed that their mission was not to capture the Irish Volunteers at the meeting but to ensure their readiness when the Home Rule Bill reached the statute book. Lundon expressed pride in the Irish Party’s leader and denounced those who sought to diminish his stature, asserting that the Irish Party would persist until victory was achieved.

Highlighting the people’s determination, Lundon pledged to keep the Home Rule Bill on the statute book at all costs. He hinted at the possibility of Volunteers acquiring rifles without proclamation and declared that Limerick would be the first county outside Ulster to be armed to the teeth.

Alderman Joyce, addressing the delicate situation with North Ireland, emphasized the party’s desire for peace but asserted that they could not accept exclusion from the Home Rule Bill for any indefinite period. He warned against a game of bluff played by the opponents, urging the South to be better prepared to defend their rights and privileges.

In a rallying call, Lundon declared the readiness of the Irish Nationalists to face any opposition, whether from Canon England or the Tory Party. He stressed their willingness to befriend former adversaries but affirmed their commitment to defending their rights if necessary.

The meeting concluded with a motion from Mr MP.. O’Shaughnessy, J.P., supported by Mr Michael Quinlan, J.P., to appoint an Organizing Committee and form Volunteer Corps in various districts of the county. John Coleman, J.P., emphasized the need for concrete actions over mere words, signalling Limerick’s unwavering commitment to the cause.

As the shadows of political change loom, the city of Limerick stands at the forefront of the Irish National Volunteer movement, poised to play a pivotal role in shaping the destiny of Ireland in the coming months. The fervour and determination displayed at this historic meeting underscore the city’s unwavering commitment to the cause of Home Rule.

Dublin Daily Express – Monday 01 June 1914

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