Art: Family Show

On Sept. 19, 1803 an impetuous, unpractical, pock-marked young Irishman stood in a Dublin courtroom charged with high treason. His name was Robert Emmet and his crime was planning, with French help, an abortive Irish rebellion. Those were the days when orators were orators, and Robert Emmet's speech, "taken from the notes of a celebrated Stenographist," has been the favorite forensic floral piece of Irish-American ward politicians and barroom declaimers for 100 years.*

The British hanged Robert Emmet, and his brother Thomas emigrated to the U. S. with his wife and daughter Elizabeth, who...

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