GENIRE-L Archives

Archiver > GENIRE > 2003-03 > 1046824567

From: "Cathy Joynt Labath" <>
Subject: !! Ballina Chronicle, May 2, 1849 #1
Date: Tue, 4 Mar 2003 18:36:07 -0600

Wednesday, May 2, 1849

STARVATION- CORONER'S INQUEST- An inquest was held at Ardnaree, on
yesterday, before MEREDITH THOMPSON, Esq. Coroner for county Sligo, on the
body of a man named THOMAS MUNALLY of Cloonislane. From the evidence adduced
it appeared that the deceased and his family, consisting of a wife and eight
children, have been in extreme destitution for several weeks; they had
pawned their entire clothing, and all other available articles, for the
purpose of purchasing food. On last Friday morning the deceased proceeded to
join a working party under the drainage, when, after working for a short
period, he dropped, down from exhaustion in consequence of want of food, and
shortly after expired. The jury unanimously found the following
verdict-"Death from starvation."
By a letter received from a highly respectable and trustworthy
gentleman in Ballinrobe, we learn that affairs in that locality are wearing
a frightful aspect. He says that if some prompt measures are not adopted,
starvation, coupled with cholera, will cut off seven-eighths of the people.
"It is not an unusual thing," observes our correspondent, "for three human
beings to be huddled into one coffin together, and thrown into a hole, not
more than three feet deep." He describes the town, and indeed, the
neighbourhood altogether, as being in a most filthy state, heaps of
loathsome stuff are to be seen in all directions.

CASTLEBAR UNION- The Rev. M. Curly, R.C.C., Castlebar, having been
informed a short time since that the out-door paupers of the Ballyhane
electoral division, in the above union, were dying from the use of food
distributed amongst them by the Relieving officer, paid a visit to the
relief depot, and took therefrom a sample of the meal alleged to be issued,
which he transmitted to ENEAS MCNONNELL, a Mayo gentleman residing in
London. Mr. MacDonnell submitted the sample to the inspection of several
eminent merchants and corn-factors in London, who were unanimously of
opinion that it was not only unfit for human food, but that in fact it would
not be good for swine! For the sake of humanity were are happy to find that
this statement is not altogether correct, which appears from a sworn
declaration made by one of the parties implicated, and a portion of which
we annex:-
"*** Deponent saith that after the distribution of the said meal, a few
pounds thereof remained on hand, consisting of the sweepings of the floors,
counters, &c, which was placed upon a wooden dish upon a shelf in deponent's
kitchen, and from which the sample alluded to was taken by the Rev. Michael
Curley, in the absence of deponent, as he had heard and believes. Saith that
the sample so taken is not a fair specimen of the meal distributed."

Cathy Joynt Labath
Ireland Newspaper Abstracts

This thread: