THE CONNAUGHT JOURNAL
Galway, MONDAY, AUGUST 16, 1824
John Copley, Esq., sworn, and examined by Counsellor Lloyd.
Recollects living at Ballyclough on the night of Major Hare's murder; five
or six persons came into the parlour after dinner early that evening, and asked
him for arms; they took a blunderbuss without a lock, a short gun, and two
muskets; they left him his double-barrelled gun, which they took at first, and
afterwards said they would let him have it for the blunderbuss without the lock;
he said he did not know where it was, and desired them to look for it, which
they did, and found it above stairs; they remained for about twenty minutes in
the house; all arms were in the pantry; witness could not swear to any of the
prisoners as being there.
Cross-examined by Mr. Jackson
Was sitting at the table; Mrs. Copley and her infant were also in the room;
there were servants in the house; he did not ring or alarm them; one of the men
only went up stairs for the gun.
Mrs. Louisa Hare was sworn, and examined by Mr. Plunkett
This lady is widow to the late lamented Major Hare; she was clad in deep
mourning; and her appearance from the recollections it gave rise to, excited
universal sympathy in Court; she recollected the attack made on house on the
night of the 31st of January, 1822; it commenced between the hours of eleven and
twelve o'clock; she had retired to bed, and was a awakened by the noise of
people coming up stairs; she awakened Major Hare, who ran to the corner of the
room where the arms were kept; he caught up a gun, and ran out; she heard him
say, "what do you want, you rascals;" there appeared to be some one outside
bursting the door open; distinguished no more until she hears a short struggle,
and the report of a gun after it; the arms were taken out of the room; after the
shot was fired, one of them entered and asked her how many guns were there, and
she said three; there was an old one that had been repaired lately; does not
know what part of it; a man called Goubeb, a smith, who lived in the
neighbourhood, had been in the habit of repairing their arms; this gun had been
missing for some time before; the man who entered the room got the two guns;
Major Hare had taken out the other; he seemed angry he did not get the three
guns, and asked for a candle, and took it down one stairs with him to light; two
other men returned up stairs again after it was lit, and came into the room; one
of them was a good deal shorter than the other, who was very pale; they desired
her to give them what ammunition was in the house; she handed it to the short
man; he took it out of the drawer of the table, which she opened, as well as she
recollects; one of them was a very pale, horrid looking wretch, with blood on
his face. The witness was moved to tears at this part of the evidence, and was
much affected; the examination was resumed when she recovered her composure.
After they left the room, she called out that they had murdered her husband;
heard one of them tell the other going down, that it was his blood he had on his
person; she could not swear to any of the prisoners.
John Creagh, Esq, of Waterville, a Magistrate, sworn.
The line of examinations being objected to by Prisoners' Counsel, his
evidence was inadmissible. It was as to some confession made in his presence and
that of Major Wilcocks, by the elder Minnane; and no proof of hope or reward
being held out to him, the Court could not receive it, Mr. Creagh not being
present at the commencement and Major Wilcocks not being now in attendance.
William Smith sworn.
Is Chief Constable; was at Major Hare's house the morning after the murder;
saw the body and mark of blood on the floor, as if a struggle had been made by a
person barefooted; also on the walk and window of the stairs; the ball entered
at the right and came out at the left side; witness searched the prisoner's
houses after the murder and they were at home; but after the account of
Fitzgerald's confession they had been absent and continued so.
The case for the Crown then closed.
Patrick Frawley was produced on the defence, merely as to prove that
Fitzgerald, the prosecutor, or the prisoners never came or slept at his house on
their way to or from Major Hare's; and that Fitzgerald was never in his house;
that he never kept company with such sort of people; he holds about forty acres
of land from Mr. Studdert, of Bunratty; he was taken up himself about three
weeks after Major Hare had been murdered, but was discharged.
Cross-examined by Serjeant Goold.
He lived at Arlemon at this time; his brothers, Tom and John, have left the
place since, and does not know where they are gone; if he knew he would not
tell; they went off about two years and a half ago; does not know a great leap
his brother John made in escaping from the Guard; did not speak to Oliver
Fitzgerald these six years; never heard they kept company with him; hears there
was a charge of Major Hare's murder against them; but they were resolved to
leave the country before it.
This was the only witness examined on behalf of the prisoners.
The Learned Judge then summed up the evidence and the Jury retired for
about a quarter of an hour, when they returned a verdict of Guilty against all
His Lordship then pronounced the awful sentence of the law, and ordered
them to be hanged on Monday next, and their bodies to be given for dissection.
The criminals received the sentence with the most penitent resignation,
thanked the Judge and Jury, and forgave their prosecutors. The elder Minnane,
before he left the bar, said, "I am going to leave a world of misery for that of
joy, and the Lord Jesus receive my soul." They all declared the justice of the
[The Execution of these unfortunate men will be found in the first page.]
Cathy Joynt Labath
Ireland Old News