Fr. Ryan, "Poet Priest of the South," Denounces "Richmond Irish Radical Republicans" Sept 1868

Pat Young

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#1
Fr. Ryan was one of the most visible Catholic priests in the South. A firm Confederate, he served as a chaplain. After the war he published The Banner of the South, a weekly on religion, politics, and literature.

Edgefield Advertiser
Wednesday, Sep 09, 1868
Edgefield, SC
Vol: 33
Page: 6

ryan.JPG

ryan2.JPG
 

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Pat Young

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So, let us recall that while these benighted Irishmen are essentially dam*ed by Ryan for starting a "Radical Club," they were not advocates of free-love and communism. They were campaigning for Grant.
 

Pat Young

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A few notes on Ryan's denunciation:

1. He makes a pretty standard Democratic appeal to Irish Catholics in tying Republicans to Know Nothings. Now Grant had briefly flirted with Know Nothingism and their are manifestation of a hostility to both Catholicism and Judaism.

2. Ryan can only conceive of the Richmond Irishmen joining the Radicals in order to secure jobs.

3. Ryan connects Grant to the persecution of Catholics in Ireland. Southern publicists repeatedly connected 1860s Republicans to the atrocities of Cromwell two centuries earlier.
 

Pat Young

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BTW, for those of you discussing the use of the term "The Lost Cause," Ryan uses that phrase in his third paragraph.
 

John Hartwell

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#8
There were arguments available to lure the Irish towards either side, based on supposed parallels with Ireland's historical sufferings. They're really all so much hot air, and none had nearly as much effect as the immediate imperatives of everyday living and hopes for eventual prosperity. The Irish had no compelling "philosophical" reason to support either side.
 

Cavalry Charger

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I did not know that.
I was surprised to learn this, too. Only because apart from knowing of Longstreet's conversion, there is little else said about it.

'It was in New Orleans on March 7, 1877 that Longstreet converted to the Catholic faith. His conversion was brought about by Father Abram J. Ryan, the poet laureate of the Confederacy. An Episcopalian, Longstreet had noticed that the pews were vacant around him when he went to worship. Father Ryan assured him that in the Catholic Church people came to Mass to worship God and not to give vent to political animosities. Longstreet remained a devout Catholic until his death in 1904. At his funeral his Mass was said by Bishop Benjamin J. Keiley of Savannah, Georgia who had served in the Army of Northern Virginia during the Civil War.'

http://www.catholicstand.com/general-longstreet-catholic-convert-husband-fighting-lady/

Another thought, given the timing, is Fr. Ryan's rhetoric may not have remained as heated a decade after the article in the OP was written.
 



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