No. 95 NAI DFA ES Box 28 File 185
WASHINGTON, 10 July 1923
Dear Professor Smiddy:
I had a visit last evening from Lieut. Gegan: he has been making some special investigations for me about the C?C?. He had a long interview with Archbishop Hayes who was very much interested and also very sympathetic. The Archbishop said he would find out all he could do to help us and greatly appreciated the fact that we did not want any publicity; he said that he had already forbidden any secret meetings to be held in any church; also that no Priest's name was to appear on any programme or pamphlet. In a few days after this interview the Archbishop sent for the Lieut. and told him that he had summoned the Priests whom he knew to be Irregulars and bound them by a solemn oath not to divulge anything he would say to them; he then asked them if they had any ammunition stored in Church, gymnasium, or school, or anything that they had no legal right to store. They said that there was nothing there now and promised that there never would be anything from now on. The Archbishop said that he was doing his best to keep the Irregular Priests down. He went on to say that the Irish Free State had his whole hearted support and he was pleased to see they had made so much headway already. He stated that he was willing at any time to do what he could to help us.
He also told the Lieut. that Mrs H. Skeffington had called on him, and had asked him to issue an appeal to all congregations for money to help the widows and orphans of the Irish Republicans. This the Archbishop refused to do and said that he had no sympathy with the Irregulars and he would not be a party to raising funds to buy ammunition and guns. He was next worried by a delegation of men (Irregulars); and to use his own words he said 'he never saw such a tough looking lot in his life'.
The Archbishop said that the Irregulars would be a hard lot to get rid of, and was sure they would do their best to rise again 'so long as they had so many well paid loafers among them'.
The Lieut. spoke about the 318-11-62 and said that he had now no following worth talking about, and that he would not trust him very far; he is a power loving man who wants to be everything. I was interested to hear the Lieut. thus express himself. On the other hand I was not surprised as I have had the same opinion myself. The Lieut. has not seen 'Plaster' for some considerable time and does not talk of him as he used to. Perhaps, he, too, has got tired of his stupidity.
I enclose a letter sent to Judge Cohalan by some of the Irregulars. Mr Crawford wants to have it photographed but I did not think it was worth the trouble; it may be that the name is familiar to the Intelligence Department.
[copy letter unsigned]
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