Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Henry-Joy McCracken Commemoration

This Sunday, September 2nd 2012 the Henry-Joy McCracken Republican Flute Band will lead a United Irish Commemoration in North Belfast. A parade will leave Duncairn Parade in the New Lodge area marching to the grave of Irish Patriot, Henry-Joy McCracken in nearby Clifton Street Cemetery. All Republicans are more than welcome to attend and honour Henry-Joy and all those United Irish Society members who fought and died for liberty, equality and freedom in Ireland in the 1798 Rising. 

Henry-Joy was born in Belfast in 1797 into a progressive and influential Presbyterian family who strongly believed in social, economic justice and Irish freedom. McCracken became interested in radical politics from an early age and helped found the Society of the United Irishmen. He travelled across Ireland convincing his fellow citizens of the need to strike a blow for freedom in Ireland. He was arrested for sedition in 1796 and imprisoned in Kilmainham Gaol in Dublin. Within two months, he was freed and continued organising a Rising with amongst others, Theobold Wolfe Tone, James Tapper Nandy, Samuel Neilson and others. 
General. Henry-Joy McCracken
Following the Rising of the United Irishmen in Leinster in May 1798, the Antrim branch of the Society met where Henry-Joy was elected General. On June 5th, Irish Republicans attacked the British Garrison at Antrim but were defeated. McCracken was eventually captured and offered an Amnesty if he testified against his comrades, he refused was publicly Hanged at Cornmarket on July 17th, 1798. 

His execution like those of his Comrades was to send a signal to other Republicans who opposed British tyranny in Ireland. Even though, Henry-Joy died over two Centuries ago. The teachings and legacy of the United Irish Society remain an integral part of modern Republicanism. The ideology is one of the most progressive and radical political traditions in Ireland. Paying tribute to his legacy is right and proper. 

Henry-Joy Republican Flute Band @ Dundalk

Two years ago, a number of dedicated Belfast Republicans formed a Flute Band in Henry-Joy's honour, since then the band has steadily grown and is based in the City. The band has taken part in a number of parades in Belfast, Dundalk, Portadown and Tyrone. The band is a credit to everyone involved and it's great to see it attracting many young people. Keeping the positive message of the United Irishmen alive; 'It is new sprung and it shall be heard'. 

This Sunday afternoon, the HYRFB will lead the Commemorative march in the New Lodge around 3pm to Henry-Joy's grave in nearby Clifton Street Cemetery. Where Leading Republican, Ciarán Cunningham of the Republican Network for Unity (RNU) will deliver a fitting Oration. 


All those interested in liberty, equality and fraternity in Ireland are more than welcome to attend the forthcoming commemoration this Sunday. Come and join us celebrate the life of Irish Patriot, Henry-Joy McCracken. For further information on the Henry-Joy McCracken Republican Flute Band, please click on the following; http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003015653981


  1. Fantastic that Henry joy mc cracken and all of the united Irishmen are remembered.I heard about last years commemoration and I hear it was a fitting tribute to these men.I have done a bit of research on Henry joy mc cracken and I have found that last years commemoration was actually the very first ever at Clifton street cemetery in north Belfast.we cannot forget our fallen republican dead.great to hear that there's a commemorating republican flute band in the name of Henry joy.his story is one of a true patriot and in my research I have found that he was actually a Presbyterian.I will be attending this event.and I believe all republicans should attend this to celebrate the life and reflect on the struggle and hardships that the united Irishmen went through to cut links with Britain.this should become an annual event like bodenstown.think this is a credit to the republican network for unity for organising this event and for creating the Band also in memory of henry joy.it's very important that we never ever forget or let it slip our memories of the cause in which Henry joy mc cracken and all the united Irishmen lay down there lives for.it's as relevant today as it was then.

  2. The 2nd of September is also lieutenant Tom Williams anniversary 2nd of September 1942 Tom was executed.seventy years passed tomorrow.this will definitely be a day of reflection for the republican family.God have mercy on the souls of these brave sons of Ireland.

  3. This event eventually took place.but loyalist protesters had gathered in there hundreds.hell bent on trouble and distraction they attacked police lines threw golf balls bottles and bricks at the bands and there supporters.for the life of me I can't understand how these thugs and hooligans were aloud to even assemble at that part of the road as the psni were given weeks notice regarding this commemoration.I witnessed a young child being struck with a golf ball on the right arm.barbaric would be an understatement.a group of loyalist hooligans had made there way up to a bay roof on the orange hall at Clifton street.here they pelted young and old with anything they could lay there hands on.thank goodness republican network for unity had sufficient stewards and security to contend with this hostile situation.then to my astonishment I witnessed the psni turning on the nationalists with shields and batons.this was heavy handedness and at one point I thought we were all going to be ravaged by both the psni and this pumped up loyalist mob.but thankfully the RNU stewards got the bands and supporters into Clifton street graveyard were a fitting commemoration was held to remember henryjoy and all the united Irishmen.praise mist be given to the men who made sure we we're all safe once inside the cemetery.a few words were spoken by a young lad from the RNU youth and it was brilliant to hear such a young lad with so much vision and charisma.there was wreath laying and then the closing of the commemoration with the national anthem being played by the Portadown flute band.I must also commend and thank the Henry joy flute band Belfast and RNU for such a successful day apart from hate filled loyalist thugs disrupting it for a while but all said and done.well done to all involved in the organising and planning of a fitting tribute to the legend and patriot Henry joy mc cracken.here's to many more to come.

  4. Great result Martin og,did the Henry Joy McCracken band not take into consideration the feelings of the Protestant people of Denmark,Hopewell etc (ala Mountainview,the Dales}You and your ilk are feckin unreal.
    An Ireland of equals my ballocks
    You're being run from Stormont via London....Get used to it.

  5. "did the Henry Joy McCracken band not take into consideration the feelings of the Protestant people of Denmark,Hopewel..."

    Do Unionist parades take into consideration the feeling of catholic people...?

    I think ALL one community parades should be banned and those bans enforced by physical force if necessary until you shower grow the f@@k up.

  6. Winkie Irvine is a dim wit.at one point he was even seen drinking a can of lager from the orange hall balcony.community worker peace builder aye dead on.that wee shite no neck mc gaw was telling everybody at the car boot sale on Sunday morning to get down to Clifton street for 3 o clock as the dissidents were marching.telling 14 year old wee ones to get into the dirty Fenians as they pass the orange hall.like even the ordinary Protestants are ashamed of that crew of hoods.there actions is not speaking for everyone round here.just hope the kids in that wee band were ok.I'm ashamed to call myself a Protestant.winkie Irvine should be stood down.he stoked tensions up for two days before the parade.last year the people from Denmark St heard the bands and couldnt have cared less.it's because of them ejits the ycv and there behaviour outside that catholic church.Nothing the uvf do to take the bad look away from them will be good enough.bringing Protestant kids onto the street to riot.shameful antics and the world knows it.don't know what's goon on with loyalists at the moment.druggies one day and community reps the next.let me tell ye there must be a fair bit if coin involved for that git winky to get out of bed for.cause him and his hench men were making enough from the untold misery they bring with there drugs.sure look at wee petrol face mc kee.he was beat for calling winky a dickhead and that was only last year..there all a joke Satan one day saint the next.

  7. He grew up in a Presbyterian family? Seems a bit sketchy. Ironic how he is comemorated by extreme republicans.

    1. Henry joy mc cracken himself was an extreme republican.who Ironically was a Presbyterian Irishman but his life he gave to break the connection With Britain.and believed all men and women in the 32 county's should be of equal.he despised the class system and with his sister Mary Ann mc cracken set out to change this.albeit in different ways.but he was very much a Presbyterian republican socialist revolutionary.there are many historical groups and society's named in memory of Henry joy mc cracken.and there's also a republican flute band and a Celtic supporters club dedicated to his memory.which is a lasting legacy to a brave Irish Presbyterian who in 1798 went to his death like a true son if Ireland.because for him it had to be unification of the island with rights for all the people of the island of Ireland.and that's just what today's revolutionary republicans are struggling for.british affairs are not needed nor welcome in Ireland.we are capable of governing ourselves under a socialist banner which would cater for everyone on the island if Ireland.catholic Protestant dessenter regardless of religion or creed.and to think a Protestant man invisaged this and had such an ideological path of thought two hundred and fourteen years ago speaks for itself.it's ridiculous in today's society in modern Ireland that there is still the have and the have nots.if Protestants could only have the vision that that brave Irish Protestant man had in 1798 then we would all be better off in a united Ireland.but maybe that thought to some people would be ironic and sketchy...I will sign off at that thought?

  8. Jim April, Bowie, MD4 September 2012 at 05:13

    This is the first I have heard of this group and found it interesting. You may want check the posted biography of McCracken as the date given of his birth year is 1797 and execution as 1798 which would have made a very impressive first year of life indeed!I do plan on reading moreon your organization and of Gen. Henry-Joy McCracken and wish you luck with achieving, finally, a United Ireland. One Island, one Nation!

  9. The reason the UVF is rioting is to flex there muscles as the top boys in the UVF are afraid because of the supergrass Hegarty trial. They think that by doing this it fires out a warning "do not come after us as this is what we are capable off" That is all. They are not really worried about the flute band. Saying that those involved in flute bands etc on the green side make themseleves look as stupid as the Orange side and diminish the argument about the Orange Order marching in areas were they are not wanted. Okay I know the Henry Joy band march in there own area but it still takes away from argument about OO marching in areas were they are not wanted Thugs parading about in there tracksuits. They are all a bunch of Chavs

  10. I agree with you to a point; Republicans are just has bad by putting people like G Kelly and others like him in power; they are nothing but killers and have kill people on both sides of the fence; people like them should be put away for good and not see the light again.

    Years ago so am told both sides of fence would join the 12 July and republican parades; so what happen