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Monday, 26 November 2007

Party at Barnane, 1862

John Rutter Carden of Barnane "the woodcock" was released from gaol in 1856, having served two years for attempting to abduct Eleanor Arbuthnot. He soon returned to actively running the estate, standing for parliament and other activities. This extract from The Times of London, quoted by Mary Heaphy on the Co Tipperary mailing list, seems to show that good times had returned.

25 October 1862.
-- On Thursday last a harvest home entertainment on an unusually extensive scale took place at Barnane, the charming residence of John Carden, Esq., in the County of Tipperary. Two hundred of Mr. Carden's tenants and labourers with their families sat down to dinner in the covered racket-court, together with a number of ladies and gentlemen, who seemed greatly to enjoy the scene of festivities and happiness thus presented to them. Ample justice having been done to the good things provided, the Queen's health was given and drunk with enthusiasm. On Mr. Carden's health being proposed by one of the tenants, he observed, in returning thanks, "that it was pleasant in this severe weather to find oneself under shelter and before a good dinner, especially when so much distress prevails elsewhere, but that it was far more satisfactory to feel that amongst a number of persons thus assembled together, and representing a large class outside, no feeling but that of kindness and good will prevailed, and that the elements of discord were even more effectually excluded than the severities of the season". Mr. Carden proceeded to remark that the condition of the labouring classes now engaged more attention than formerly; that when distress came -- as is being exemplified at the present moment in the case of the distressed operatives in Lancashire - it excited general sympathy; and he expressed a hope that their next meeting might be connected with some practical purpose, such as the encouragement of those who, by the attention they bestowed, with a view to the neatness of their houses, the cultivation of their gardens, and the education of their children, might appear to have made the best use of the advantages which Providence conferred upon them. These remarks elicited much applause, admidst which Mr. Carden resumed his seat. "The Health of the ladies present" and of the "Wives and Daughters" of the farmers and labourers, was next proposed, and was responded to in a humourous speech by Mr. Boulcott, of the 86th Regiment. Mr. Fitzgerald, one of Mr. Carden's employees, then rose and gave expression to the fullness of his heart by eulogising Mr. Carden's character as a Landlord and extensive employer. The tables being cleared away, a country dance was formed, headed by the ladies and gentlemen present, after which the festivities of the evening were prolonged to a late hour by the country people.

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