John Mitchel (1815-1875)
John Mitchel was born at Dungiven, Co. Derry on the 3rd of November, 1885. He was a man of considerable literary talent, and the most fearless and outspoken of the Young Ireland Party.
John Mitchel never ceased to proclaim his “holy hatred of British rule”. This led to his trial for “treason-felony”. He was found guilty and sentenced to fourteen years transportation to Van Diemens Land. He sailed into exile on May 27th, 1848 and was not to see his native land again for twenty seven years.
By the time he returned to Ireland, John Mitchel was a dying man. He was invited to return to Ireland to contest a vacancy in Tipperary for the British Parliament. He contested and won.
However, eight days after receiving news of his triumph, he died at his old home at Dromolane, Newry, on the 20th of March, 1875. He was buried in the family vault with his parents in the little Unitarian graveyard in High Street, Newry.