Born in Mallinahone, Ireland; privately tutored. At age 15, deafened and partially blinded by a gunpowder explosion. Beginning 1848, became involved with several Irish independence movements, culminating with joining the Fenians in 1860. Became a co-editor of the Fenian journal The Irish People. Arrested with several other Fenians in 1865 and found guilty of treasonable felony, his jail sentence was reduced to 3 years 4 months because of his delicate health. Elected member of Parliament for Tipperary in 1869, but defeated in a recall election the next year. For the rest of his life, he confined his efforts to writing. While in jail, he had written a novel, Sally Cavanagh, or The Untenanted Graves. His second novel, Knocknagow, or The Homes of Tipperary, appeared in 1879 to much acclaim. Died at Blackrock from a stroke; buried at Mullinahone.
Deaf Lives, p.107-108.
9 May 1828-22 August 1882