CoTyroneHeadstone_logo (5K)
Click banner to submit/search the Project!

  • Home
  • >>
  • Co. Londonderry Assizes 1847

Co. Londonderry Assizes 1847

Transcribed by Teena from the Londonderry Sentinel.

20 Mar. 1847

Jane DUNN and Isabella DUNN were indicted for stealing poultry in January last, from Wm. BROWN. Guilty – each to be imprisoned for 4 months and kept to hard labour.

John BOYD and Hannah CRAWFORD for stealing potatoes, the property of Hamilton STEWART were acquitted.

John M’CANN and Michael KANE for stealing pork, the property of Wm. M’CLURE Guilty – M’CANN to be transported for 7 years and M’KANE to be imprisoned for 6 months and kept to hard labour.

John DOHERTY and James M’GOWAN for stealing turnips, the property of Mr. A. WATT were acquitted.

Samuel DOHERTY for stealing some books, the property of Doctor M’LAUGHLIN. Pleaded guilty – to be sent to the poor-house.

Edmond O’DONNELL pauper, for stealing a suit of clothes from the work-house of Derry union, pleaded guilty. – To be transported for 7 years.

James DUNN, another pauper, for stealing five half crowns, the property of James DOHERTY, inmate of Derry workhouse. submitted. – To be transported for 7 years.

George DEMPSEY for obtaining goods from Mr. Archibald M’ILWAINE of Coleraine, on a letter purporting to have been written by the Rev. Francis DOBBS. Submitted. – To be transported for 7 years.

Sarah NORRIS for stealing a pair of shoes at Newtownlimavady on the 19th February, submitted.- To be imprisoned for 4 months from date of committal and kept to hard labour.

James O’DONNELL for receiving stolen goods, also for stealing same in Londonderry.  Pleaded guilty. To be transported for 7 years.

7 Aug. 1847 Crown Court

James DOHERTY was indicted for stealing a mare and colt, the property of Ninian ROSS, Kirkminster, County Donegal, on the 12th May last.

Ninian ROSS sworn – Missed a mare heavy with foal and colt, which were stolen from his stable on the night previous; followed the tracks of the horses, which he discovered as far as Claudy in Tyrone; went on to Newtownstewart and there employed Tom CALLAGHAN to go in search; saw the stolen animals at Maghera in custody of police that evening, which was the fair day.

Constable WILSON apprehended prisoner in Maghera for stealing a mare and colt and having them in his possession; a man calling himself Ninian ROSS, the first witness, identified them as his property and got them returned to him; prisoner lives in the lands of Crew, near Maghera.

The same prisoner was indicted for stealing a bay gelding, the property of James GOURLEY of Craghadoes, on the 14th April last.

James HERON –  Is servant to GOURLEY; put the horse into stable on the night previous, with part of the harness on him; he came home late that night with some seed potatoes; missed the horse out of the stable next morning; did not see him until about six weeks after with Constable WILSON in Maghera.

Bernard M’CLEARY Lives in Maghera; prisoner came in the middle of April with a bay horse, which he said got from his uncle and wished to get him into witness’s stable; saw the horse afterwards with police; knew nothing of the character of prisoner.

Constable WILSON after having taken prisoner into custody on the first charge, looked into the Hue and Cry and saw a horse stolen from the neighbourhood of Raphoe; went to prisoner’s house and found a horse answering the description; the horse was afterwards identified as the property of James GOURLEY. Guilty, sentence for the first offence to be transported for 10 years, after the expiration of which, to be transported for 10 years more for the second offence.

James M’BRIDE was indicted for burglariously entering the house of James MITCHELL near Coleraine on the night the 11th July and for stealing 5 pewter plates, 2 bags and a handkerchief.

John HUNTER, one of the Coleraine watchmen, saw prisoner going over Coleraine Bridge the night of the 11th July and asked him what had he got in his bundle; prisoner said he had got some clothes and was going to his brother’s to get dressed for the 12th; witness felt something hard in the bundle and took him into custody and found it to contain 5 pewter plates, 2 bags  and 1 handkerchief. Guilty.

James DEAGHAN for stealing a heifer, the property of George LYON, Nn-Limavady, on the 6th of July. The heifer was grazing on Glackmore mountain, in the County of Donegal and in the charge of Neal M’CALLION, who missed her on the 6th July and discovered it in Newtownlimavady market. Guilty.

The same prisoner was afterwards indicted for stealing a cow, the property of Robert GIVEN.

Constable THOMPSON found prisoner selling the cow in Limavady market. Guilty. For first offence, transported for 10 years; for second offence transportation to continue for 10 years more.

Arthur HAGAN, for stealing two heifers, the property of John MULLOY and one heifer, the property of John M’WILLIAMS on the 13th Jane last.

Thomas FLANAGAN had the heifers in charge, grazing on Dunlagan mountain.

James M’NICHOLLS was at the fair of Derry on 17th June last and on going home in company with Manus M’CLOSKEY met people driving 3 heifers, near the shedding of the roads leading to Cashel; M’CLOSKEY had left witness at the shedding of the roads; called after him, thinking the heifers were not honestly come by, this was about midnight; took the heifers into his own house and afterwards delivered them to the police in Dungiven.

Manus M’CLOSKEY saw a man with the heifers; identified prisoner; took him to a wake and left him there; prisoner said he would not stir until the morning; next saw him in custody of the police.

Wm. WANN, constable, went to M’NICHOLLS’ and took into custody three heifers, gave them up to FLANAGAN for he claimed them; prisoner was in the lock-up of the police barracks. Guilty, to be transported for 10 years.

Robert HAYES for uttering a counterfeit shilling in the fair of Kilrea on the 14th April last, to Mary QUIGG.

It appeared that the prisoner, in company with a woman, also of the name of HAYES, came up to Mary QUIGG on the street of Kilrea and showed to her a piece of money and asked her if she had half-crown, or a shilling, to see if the head would correspond with that of his coin. She gave him a shilling, which he looked at and then let it fall on the ground and handed her what she thought to be her own shilling again. She went to buy meal with it and it turned out to be a counterfeit shilling. The prisoner had also imposed a counterfeit shilling on Mary QUIGG’S father on same day.

A record of a previous conviction and sentence against prisoner for similar offence at Fermanagh Assixes, 1846, was proved. Guilty, to be imprisoned for 1 year and kept to hard labour.

His Lordship said he had narrowly escaped being transported for 7 years on account of the record of the conviction not having arrived until the day of trial and consequently its not having been stated in the indictment.

Edward M’LAUGHLIN and Thomas KIDD for having on the 15th July last, maimed and wounded one cow, the property of John OTTERSON, one heifer, the property of Owen BRINE and one heifer belonging to Bernard M’KENNA.

The prisoners were proved to have been gatherers of rags, hair, &c. and to have been at the byre where the cows were. They cut the tufts of the hair at the bottom of the tails of twenty head of cattle and with some tufts a little portion of the body of the tails. Edward M’LAUGHLIN had a bag carrying along the road, and put the bag into a cart. The prisoners, together with the bag containing hair and a padlock, were taken by the Magherafelt police. KIDD sold part of the hair in the town. Among the hair were discovered three tufts, having part of the joints attached, which, when applied to the tails of the three cows referred to as having been denuded, corresponded. Not guilty. Thomas KIDD was discharged.

Edward M’LAUGHLIN one of the former prisoners, for having a padlock and grape in his possession, the property of Neal KELLY.

The byre was locked with the padlock and the grape was inside. Guilty, to be transported for 7 years.

John LEECH for stealing a bullock, the property of Andrew M’CAUSLAND, Killymuck, on 23rd May last. Not guilty.

Daniel HERON, for poisoning his wife and children. The counsel for the crown prosecution in this case being called on, made application that the trial be postponed until next assizes, as the ends of justice would not be gained by its being gone into at these assizes. The court said, if the postponement was for the purpose of having the body exhumed, he did not think it was right to grant it. Mr. SMYLY stated that the investigation by the coroner was not satisfactorily carried on, but that the coroner had received his instructions. Counsellor DOHERTY urged that as there was no bill of indictment against the prisoner at the bar he should be discharged, if the crown prosecutors applied for postponement, they should make affidavit to that effect. The court said an answer to the application would be given next day.

William MUNROE pleaded guilty to stealing five yards of linen on 3rd July last, the property of Aaron HENRY Muff; to be imprisoned 2 calendar months and kept to hard labour.

George M’LAUGHLIN for stealing five hens pleaded guilty. To be imprisoned 2 months and kept to hard labour.

Jane LENNOX, Mary Anne LENNOX and Anne COLLINS, were separately indicted for stealing four yards of flannel, the property of Henry MORRISON of Dungiven. Not guilty.

William FOREST for stealing five hens and a cock. Guilty.

William M’CARRON for forging an order for twenty pounds of meal, value 5s. Pleaded guilty. To be imprisoned 3 months and kept to hard labour.

A little boy pleaded guilty to a charge of theft. To be twice whipped with a birch rod and sent to Coleraine workhouse.

William BRISBANE for stealing a razor on the 18th May, the property of John SAMPSON. BRISBANE was in the habit of getting the loan of the razor from SAMPSON and this appeared to be a malicious prosecution. Not guilty.

Anne PORT for stealing a stone of sugar, the property of Terence M’COSKER. Mary M’COSKER proved the theft. Guilty. The prisoner reluctantly confessed that she was induced to perpetrate the deed for the purpose of being transported to her husband, who was previously transported for 7 years and felt vexed when the people told her that she would not get to the same island with her husband. Sentence, 7 years transportation.

Darby DOHERTY, for having on the 7th July, stolen one key, the property of the Londonderry and Enniskillen Railway Company. Not guilty.

Edward HYNDMAN and James HIGGINS for stealing one pair of cartwheels, and a trough, the property of John HATRICK. Not guilty.

John DIGNAM for receiving a harrow, knowing it to be stolen. Not guilty.

Sarah M’LAUGHLIN for stealing a table cloth, the property of Robert PROCTOR on 7th July last. Guilty, recommended to mercy.

Michael M’FEELY, Francis O’NEILL and James BARR were indicted for forcibly taking possession of the house of Wm. KING in Foyle street, on the 28th June last.

Wm. BOYD Esq., their counsel, applied to traverse in prox. They were bound in their former securities.

Charles WILLS was indicted for publishing malicious libel against John BOYLE of Londonderry, on the 16th of September 1846. Pleaded guilty.

Wm. BOYD Esq., addressed the court on behalf of Mr. WILLS and said the traverser had, as his lordship had just heard, acted very properly in withdrawing and retracting the charge. Mr. BOYLE was not actuated by any vindictive motives, but considered it his duty to institute the prosecution to vindicate his character. The traverser had also tendered a most ample apology to Mr. BOYLE and regretted his having written the placard complained of. Mr. BOYD then read the apology and left the issue in the hands of his lordship. Sentence of the court – To be fined 6d.

James COLLINS was indicted for picking the pocket of Mrs. Archibald DUNN on the 13th July last, of five half-crowns and one shilling at the fair of Dungiven. Guilty. To be transported for 7 years.

William JOHNSTON for stealing from the Magherafelt poorhouse. Pleaded guilty. To be imprisoned 1 month, twice whipped with a birch rod and sent back to the workhouse.

Patrick CANNON and Susan DOHERTY alias O’BRIEN, for keeping a house of ill fame in Thomas street. Guilty, CANNON to be imprisoned 3 calendar months and DOHERTY to be imprisoned 6 calendar months and kept to hard labour.

James DOHERTY Esq., applied to the court for its decision respecting Daniel HERON, in custody for poisoning his wife, when his lordship said that he had conferred with Chief Justice BLACKBURNE and the Attorney-general, both of whom had approved of the course he meant to adopt. The prisoner would therefore, be kept in custody until next assizes.

Record Court

George WOODS v. Robert SHEILS
In this case, which was an action for trespass, Mr. SPROULE opened the pleadings. The declaration contained two counts, and damages were laid at £500

James MAJOR Q.C.stated the plaintiff’s case. Plaintiff was a shop-keeper in Kilrea. Defendant had formerly been a draper in Maghera, but had now retired from business and gone to a farm in the country. On closing his business, he sold the residue of his stock for £35 to plaintiff, who had passed two bills, at two and four months, for the amount. Before the bills become due, plaintiff, from being unable to collect his debts, wished some time and Mr. JOYCE, a friend of defendant’s, applied to him to secure defendant’s debt and he accordingly passed a bond for the amount, but on the very some day on which this security was passed, the defendant, in plaintiffs absence, came to plaintiffs shop in Kilrea and by force and without any authority whatever, removed his goods, consisting of woollen and grocery goods, to the value of near £100 and has since disposed of them and in consequence of this gross violation of plaintiff’s rights, his shop was shut for a considerable time and his business deranged, so that he had no doubt they would give ample damages.

John HAY – Is plaintiffs shop-man; on the 18th May defendant came with a horse cart, took plaintiffs goods to the value of £73 first cost; produces an inventory and conceives it fair value.

Thomas STOREY – Is a police constable; saw defendant on the 18th May, remove plaintiffs goods to Mr. ADCOCK’S hotel; said he had an order for £35 and costs; on the following morning, saw defendant, with horse and cart, take away the goods from ADCOCK’S Hotel; saw plaintiffs shop shut for some time after.

Wm. ADCOCK’S – Keeps the hotel in Kilrea; on the 18th May defendant left a horse and cart with goods in his yard, which he removed the following morning; first said he had an order, afterwards that he had not.

Mr. MAJOR stated that he had further witnesses to produce, but the court intimated that it was not necessary.

Mr. BROOKE stated the defendant’s case.

Wm. Toy stated that SHEILS had retired from business about six months ago – that WOODS had bought part of his stock, for which he paid in two bills, one for £15 17s. 6d., and the other for £20. WOODS afterwards called upon witness and told him he was unable to meet his creditors and asked what he ought to do, when witness advised him to give a bond.This was done and his attorney (Mr. CRAMPSIE) had instructions to issue an execution upon that bond. Cross-examined – Defendant told him that he had taken the goods from WOODS, but not at that time. (It was here explained by counsel that the goods were seized before the bills in question had arrived at maturity.)

John MARTIN examined – Was in SHEILS employment in May last, proved the receiving of the goods the value of £17 19s 6d. which goods had been brought from WOODS’ house in Kilrea, by a man named M’SHANE

Henry M’SHANE proved the taking of the goods from WOODS’ shop and their delivery to MARTIN, the last witness, in Mr. SHEILS establishment, Maghera.

The witness HAY was recalled and he proved that amongst the goods taken were two canisters containing about 18 lbs. of tea, each. The judge commented upon this transaction as a most extraordinary invasion of the rights of property and the jury, after having retired for a few minutes, brought in a verdict of £73 3s. with costs.