Item #List2434 The Speech of Robert Emmet, Esq. As Delivered at the Sessions House, Dublin, Before Lord Norbury, One of the Chief Judges. Irish-American Imprints - Robert Emmet, Robert Emmet, John James Seymour Barralet, Samuel, John Simms, Artist, engraver, Printer.
The Speech of Robert Emmet, Esq. As Delivered at the Sessions House, Dublin, Before Lord Norbury, One of the Chief Judges.
[Irish-American Imprints - Robert Emmet] Emmet, Robert; Barralet, John James [Artist] Seymour, Samuel [engraver]; Simms, John [Printer]

The Speech of Robert Emmet, Esq. As Delivered at the Sessions House, Dublin, Before Lord Norbury, One of the Chief Judges.

Philadelphia: c. 1814. Composite broadside measuring 20 ½ x 17 inches, consisting of an engraving credited to Barralet and Seymour measuring 17 x 13 inches at upper portion and the text of Emmet’s speech, measuring 17 ½ x 7 ½ inches on lower portion. Verso with various reinforcements including with two manuscript receipts dated 1814, which would date the print to around that time, when all three men were in Philadelphia. “No 111” written in margin in ink. Various creases, small tears and some soiling to engraving, good overall and quite presentable. Good. Item #List2434

A fabulous mock-up for a broadside created by the artist John James Barralet, the engraver Samuel Seymour, and the printer John Binns in Philadelphia, this being a preliminary version of OCLC 191261216, which would be entitled A correct copy of the speech of Robert Emmet, Esq. delivered at the Sessions House, Dublin, on the 19th September, 1803, before Lord Norbury, one of the chief judges of the Court of King's Bench, and others, before whom he had been convicted of high treason. The design was used for a broadside printed by Menzel and Co. and copyrighted in 1852, as well as a version by the Irish-American publisher William Smith of Philadelphia several decades after the original. OCLC locates two copies but may have the date incorrectly listed as 1803, which despite being the date of Emmet’s death was actually four years before Binns moved to Philadelphia, and several years before the receipts on the verso.

Overall the broadside represents an early and significant expression of Irish-American anti-English sentiment. “[Binns] was exposed to the advanced ideas of the Irish patriots and Volunteers, making him a republican. Between 1792 and 1794 he played a small role in the Dublin Society of United Irishmen, which was seeking parliamentary reform and Catholic emancipation. In 1794 he moved to London, where he worked first in the plumbing trade, then lived off the fees from hiring out debating rooms that he rented in the Strand. He joined the radical London Corresponding Society and was soon prominent on its executive committee. In 1796 Binns traveled the provinces as an LCS delegate hoping to revive the movement for political reform. In Birmingham he was arrested for uttering seditious words in a public house. After long delays he was acquitted in 1797, probably because a sympathetic court official rigged the jury. Soon thereafter, Binns left the LCS, but almost certainly joined the underground revolutionary United Irishmen in London (his comments on this part of his life in his autobiography are disingenuous). He was arrested twice more, the most important occasion, in February 1798, leading to a charge of high treason. Again he was acquitted, although one of his associates, the Catholic priest James O’Coigley, was hanged. In March 1799 he was jailed under the Suspension of Habeas Corpus Act and released after nearly two years.” -ANB Barralet and Seymour’s involvement were also significant. Barralet had emigrated from Ireland several decades earlier. Seymour would later gain fame for his illustrations of westward Euro-American travels among indigenous Americans, and being a native-born Englishman his involvement in this project is notable.

Overall a very scarce early Irish-American broadside, this being the third known copy and the only which exists in draft form.

Price: $7,500.00