“Joe Brady and Dan Curley”


The singer claims that Joe Brady and Daniel Curley are innocent of Burke's murder but that the informer Carey, a confessed killer is free: "Carey is more guilty than any of the rest ... the daggers which had done the deed he broke them into bits"


For broadsides on the same subject see

Bodleian, Harding B 14(186), "Lines on the trial & sentence of Joe Brady and Dew Curly and others for the Phoenix park murder" ("All in high and low station who dwell in this nation," unknown, n.d.

Bodleian, Harding B 40(6), "Lines written on the execution of Joe. Brady ("Good christians all on you I call to hear my lamentation"), J.F. Nugent and Co.? (Dublin?),1850-1899; I could not download the image for verification.

Zimmermann p. 62: "The Phoenix Park murders and their judicial sequels struck the popular imagination and were a gold-mine for ballad-writers: some thirty songs were issued on this subject, which was the last great cause to be so extensively commented upon in broadside ballads." - BS

Historical references

  • Chronology of the Phoenix Park murders (source: primarily Zimmermann, pp. 62, 63, 281-286.)
  • May 6, 1882 - Chief Secretary Lord Frederick Cavendish and the Under Secretary Thomas Henry Burke are murdered by a group calling themselves "The Invincible Society."
  • January 1883 - twenty seven men are arrested.
  • James Carey, one of the leaders in the murders, turns Queen's evidence.
  • Six men are condemned to death, four are executed (Joseph Brady is hanged May 14, 1883; Daniel Curley is hanged on May 18, 1883), others are "sentenced to penal servitude," and Carey is freed and goes to South Africa.
  • July 29, 1883 - Patrick O'Donnell kills Carey on board the "Melrose Castle" sailing from Cape Town to Durban.
  • Dec 1883 - Patrick O'Donnell is convicted of the murder of James Carey and executed in London (per Leach-Labrador)

Cross references

  • cf. "The Phoenix Park Tragedy" (subject: the Phoenix Park murders) and references there


  1. Zimmermann 84, "Lamentable Lines on Joe Brady and Dan Curley" (1 text)
  2. BI, Zimm084


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1883 (Zimmermann)