In 1875, when Emily Weddall was seven years old Charles Steward Parnell first came into power. She may not have been aware of politics at such a young age, but a few year later when the Land League was formed by Michael Davitt in 1879 she may have took notice, as it was a cause she followed in her adult life.
“In October 1879, Davitt established the National Land League and installed Parnell as its president. Parnell then traveled around Ireland, delivering fiery speeches at mass meetings organized by the League. Read more in History Ireland
In the 1880’s when he entered parliament, Emily was in her teens and perhaps it was then when she first became politically minded. His leadership style would have captured her imagination. When Parnell died in 1891, Emily was living in Dublin and more than likely was one of thousands who attended the funeral of the “uncrowned king”.
Years later she was a supporter of Michael Davitt and became friends with his son Cahir, who visited her at her home in Rockfield House in Achill.
Above is a poem published in the Evening Herald to mark his first anniversary in 1892, it is simply initialed F. P. H.
Twenty years later when the same ‘poet’ wrote to the Irish Independent, citing the lack of funds to complete the Parnell Monument, Emily stepped in and made a contribution for the monument to be complete. It was in 1911, when thousands arrived to see it inaugurated, perhaps Emily was in the crowd.