July 29, 1883

James Carey, leader of the controversial Irish National Invincibles, was killed by Patrick O’Donnell on this day in 1883. The Invincibles, who were a more radical group formed by IRB members, were responsible for the brutal Phoenix Park murders of Thomas Henry Burke and Lord Frederick Cavendish. On January 13, 1883, Carey was arrested along with 16 other members of the Invincibles. Carey “turned Queen’s evidence,” meaning he turned witness for the state and testified against his fellow conspirators. His evidence resulted in the hanging of five of his associates. Carey, who’s life was in danger following his betrayal, headed for Cape Town. However, while aboard, Patrick O’Donnell discovered his true identity and shot Carey.

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