IN HIS OFT QUOTED BOOK, THE SECRET SOCIETIES OF IRELAND, Captain H. B. C. Pollard, late of the Staff of the Chief of Police, Ireland, gives much valuable information concerning the Clan-na-Gael (Seepage 69 et seq.).
“In 1869 a new secret Irish-American organization was formed, known as the Clan-na-Gael. It traces its origin back through a permanent secret society known as the Knights of the Inner Circle, which, in turn, descended from the Knights of St. Patrick, known as the Ancient Order of Hibernians to-day. It was originally a seceding circle (The Brian Boru) of the United Irishmen, an American society tracing back to 1789.”
By 1873, the Clan had absorbed all independent Irish secret societies save that of “The Irish Confederation” of Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa with which it had reached an arrangement for mutual toleration.
The original organizer of the Clan had called it the United Brotherhood, and in all its work a simple letter cipher composed of the next letter in the alphabet after the one really meant, was utilised. The secret name of the Clan being the United Brotherhood, it was therefore designated and spoken of as the V. C.