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!! Connaught Journal; Aug 6, 1824 ;"Execution of Honora Concannon"

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  • Cathy Joynt Labath
    THE CONNAUGHT JOURNAL Galway, Thursday, August 6, 1824 EXECUTION OF HONORA CONCANNON This wretched woman, the perpetrator of a horrid murder, the frightful
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 14, 2005
      Galway, Thursday, August 6, 1824

      This wretched woman, the perpetrator of a horrid murder, the frightful
      details of which, as they appeared on the trial, will be found in another
      column, suffered the extreme punishment of the law, on Saturday, in front of the
      new Jail. However odious the crime may be, we cannot, without a degree of pity,
      view a human being in the most awful situation of life, weighed down by a
      consciousness of guilt, evincing sorrow for the depravity by which they had been
      impelled, and approaching with fear & trembling, the judgment of the Creator -
      but, though many thousands were, assembled to witness the execution of this
      unfortunate woman, not an exclamation of sympathy, not a murmur of regret,
      escaped from a single individual. The vast crowd was silent and motionless,
      evidently shocked at the unexampled hardihood she displayed. - From the time of
      her sentence being passed, until the instant she was precipitated from the fatal
      drop, the Rev. Dean O'Shaugnesssy had been unremitting in his endeavours to
      bring her mind to a state of peace; and a short time before she was removed from
      her cell, had succeeded so far as to induce her to conduct herself in somewhat
      of a becoming manner, and, we believe, to join him in prayer. Until then, her
      behaviour was outrageous in the extreme, blaspheming and screaming incessantly.
      The momentary calmness she assumed was however thrown aside, and her screams and
      resistance renewed with redoubled violence, when the summons arrived to conduct
      her to her last earthly scene. The most dreadful imprecations - the most
      heart-rending apathy were the only responses she made to the affecting appeals
      of the attending Clergyman. No persuasion - no entreaties availed to bring her
      to a proper sense of her situation; and force was at length reluctantly resorted
      to, to fulfill the sentence she was so justly merited. -We are really sick at
      the conclusion. She was placed (after having severely bit the executioner,) with
      the rope round her neck, lying on the platform; but she exerted all her strength
      and pulled herself back into the door - in the struggle her cap had fallen off,
      and her hair hung loose and disordered. The Rev. Mr. O'Shaughnessy then
      addressed her, but without effect. She was again forced out, and, while sitting
      on the drop, was once more exhorted and implored to sue for mercy in her
      Saviour - but she still refused to listen. The drop then fell: - one of her
      legs, which was resting on the frame, remained for a few moments supporting her,
      until removed by the executioner; and even in that awful suspension between time
      and eternity, she continued to invoke the most horrid curses on all concerned in
      causing her conviction and execution. She struggled for considerable time; and
      thus died the unrepentant - perpetrator of the most enormous, cruel and
      cold-blooded murder that ever disgraced this country.
      Her body was subsequently conveyed to the Co. Infirmary, where it remained
      unclaimed by any friend or relative. She was a native of a remote part of the
      County of Galway, and had been in service at many places in this County, which
      she filled, we understand, with much satisfaction to her employers, until
      seduced into a course of vice, which too many females have the misfortune to
      enter upon. She has left one child, a boy, for the hand of charity to preserve
      from the example of its unhappy parent.

      Cathy Joynt Labath
      Ireland Old News
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