John Boyle O’Reilly (1844-1890) was an Irish poet, journalist, author and Irish republican. Born in Drogheda to an relatively wealthy yet strongly nationalist family, O’Reilly would join the Irish Republican Brotherhood (I.R.B.) in 1864, recruiting new members to the organisation. He was convicted in June 1866 of high treason for membership, sentenced to penal transportation in the British colony of Western Australia. On the voyage, O’Reilly and the other republican prisoners maintained a handwritten journal titled The Wild Goose. After several years, including an alleged affair with the warden’s daughter, he escaped to the United States. In America, he was a prolific journalist for The Pilot in Boston, defending labour rights as well as the civil rights of Native and African-Americans. O’Reilly published several anthologies of poetry throughout his life, becoming quickly renowned as one of Irish nationalism’s finest poets in the English language.


The Dead Who Died For Ireland

The Cry of the Dreamer

To All The Dear Ones Outside (1866)

The Irish National Cause (1890)