Exciting Scene In Lurgan.
An Orange Funeral Stopped.
The Belfast News-Letter,
Tuesday, May 11,
LURGAN, MONDAY NIGHT – Our Lurgan correspondent, writing last night, says : – The Protestants of Lurgan have enjoyed a foretaste of Home Rule to-day. Mr. William Dynes, the man whose accidental death is reported in to-day’s Belfast News-Letter, was an old and valued member of the Orange Institution. He occupied the position of W.M. in L.O.L. No. 48, and No. 68. Royal Black Preceptory. The brethren of Lurgan district determined that the deceased brother should be interred with the honours of the Order. About 8,000 Protestants, including at least 1,000 Orangemen, assembled to attend the funeral. The Lurgan Lodges represented were Nos. 12, 13, 16, 17, 22, 23, 24, 26, 27, 41, 43, 44, 46, 48, 57, 63, 82, 91, 103, 120, 123, 207, 230, 252, 352, 371, 372, 388, 416, 536, 751, 1683. The lodges of other districts represented were : – Nos. 26, 62, and 1770, Dollingstown; 26, Mount Ida, Banbridge; 6, 20, and 407, Maralin; 770, Magheragall; and 712, Portrush, the last named, being represented by Dr. Moore.
The burial place of Br. Dynes was Shankill Parochial Graveyard, the only approach to which lies through Edward Street and Shankill Street (the Pound). The route has for many years been closed against all Protestant processions and bands. On this occasion an extra police force of 100 men – 50 from Belfast and 50 from County Armagh – were drafted into Lurgan, the entire force being under command of Mr. Hamilton, R.M.; Captain Keogh, R.M.; County-Inspector Carey, and District-Inspectors Bull (Belfast) and Bigley (Lurgan). The Orangemen assembled at the Orange Hall this evening, and attired themselves in the colours of the Order, while a flute band associated with the lodge of the deceased appeared in uniform to accompany the cortège.
When the brethren were about to form in procession Mr. Hamilton, R.M., entered the hall and announced that a sworn information had been lodged by both Roman Catholics and Protestants, who declare that an orange procession passing through the “Pound” would entail disturbance, and that he was determined to use the force at his disposal to prevent their marching through that district with the emblems he saw before him. The band put aside their musical instruments, but the brethren determined to test the point as to what order could deprive them of their legitimate rights, and formed in procession, with regain, under the leadership of Br. George Lunn, D.S.
In Church Place the way was barred by four cordons of police, two with batons and two with fixed bayonets. Immense crowds had assembled. A great Home Rule mob behind the police yelled and cheered, while some persons in the Protestant crowd called upon the Orangemen to force their way. The hearse was stopped by the police, and intense excitement prevailed for half an hour, the Orangemen refusing to take off their colours, and Mr. Hamilton insisting that they must do so before the funeral would be permitted to proceed. The orange sashes were taken off at last, and then Mr. Hamilton insisted that black mourning sashes must be taken off also, but the brethren intimated that sooner than submit to this sacrifice they would seek some other resting place for the deceased, and bring the conduct of the authorities before Parliament. Mr. Hamilton then yielded, and a portion of the cortège was permitted to pass through the “Pound,” amid the jeers and laughter of the Nationalists.
On reaching the graveyard, the funeral service was conducted by the Rev. Mr. Ford; after which the brethren donned their colours and offered the last fraternal tribute to the memory of the deceased. All sashes were then concealed, and the processions were, under police protection, permitted to return to the Orange Hall, while insult of every kind was heaped upon them by hundreds of females and corner roughs, who hued the windows of Shankill Street and Edward Street. Cheers and counter cheers were given, while the Roman Catholics shouted “Home Rule,” and taunted the Orangemen with the indignity to which they had been subjected. On arriving at the Orange Hall, Br. Lunn said he believed they were justified in testing the point of public liberty as they had done, and the matter was now one for Major Saunderson in the House of Commons. After an address by Dr. Moore, the meeting dispersed.
This Newspaper Article has been reproduced by the kind permission of the British Newspaper Archive Limited, (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk).