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Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)

Pat Purcell Papers

D'Isreali Papers

Inquisitions Manuscripts

Courtesy of Michael Purcell

Page 3

Carlow town, Inquest 1820.

An Inquistition Indented taken on behalf of our Gracious Sovereign Lord the King at the house of Richard White in the Town of Carlow this 24th day of May before James Ryan, Coroner, on view of the body of the said Richard White then and there lying dead upon the Oath of the Jurors: Richard King, William Galbraith, Joseph Bowles, Edward Kennedy, Michael Connolly, Stanley Johnson, John Bowers, William O' Brien, John Burbridge, Edward Keating, Edward Giltenan, Hamilton Gardiner and John Brennan, good and Lawful men.

The said Richard White came to his death on the 19th May he being riding in a Gig drawn by a certain Gelding on the trackway of the River Barrow, it so happened that the Gelding took fright and flung Richard White on the ground by means whereof Richard White received one Compound fracture of the left leg and that by the improper treatment and management of the fracture by a person by the name of Sylvester Duigan and other improper treatment Richard White did languish until the 23rd day of May at his dwelling house in the Town of Carlow and did then and there die and the above named Jurors upon their Oath do say that the death of Richard White was occasioned by the means aforesaid,

(signed) James Ryan, Coroner for Carlow.

 Statement of William Ryan of the Town of Carlow, Surgeon and Doctor of Physic.

Saith that on the evening of Friday the 19th of May 1820 he was called to attend Richard White at his house in the Town of Carlow. He found that Richard White's leg was fractured with a considerable projection of the upper bone over the lower bone of the leg, William Ryan got assistance and brought the bones in opposition to each other for a short time but in consequence of the contraction of the muscles they over lapped to a considerable degree and finding it impossible to keep them in their proper situation he was obliged to remove a small portion of the upper bone and finding it still impossible to keep them in their proper situation he made a small incision to bring the bones to a proper situation when Doctor Reede of the Town of Carlow came in and was told by William Ryan of all he had done - Doctor Reede sanctioned all he had done and Doctor Reede placed the leg in the most easy position and then bandaged the fractured part lightly.

On the following day William Ryan was told by Doctor Reede that a man by the name of Sylvestor Deegan had been at Richard White's house for the purpose of setting the leg, William Ryan then called to White's house to ascertain the fact where he was informed by Richard White that Slyvestor Deegan was contacted by White's wife and that Deegan had set the leg.

Patrick McQuirk of the Town of Carlow, Publican saith that on Saturday the 20th of May about the hour of eight o'clock in the forenoon he met Slyvestor Deegan at the door of Richard White's house and went into the house when he saw Deegan and others directed by Deegan strip and open the bandages on Richard White's leg, White was Roaring and Bawling with pain, he saw Slivestor Deegan set White's leg and heard White say he was more free from pain than before -  he then saw Deegan apply four wooden splints to Whites leg and then he bandaged then up.

Richard White died three days later.

Examination of Mary White, widow of Richard White, deceased, sayith that on the 20th day of May 1820 her husband Richard White was Roaring and Bawling in great pain all night and day, having been attended by William Ryan, Surgeon, and Dr Reede of the Town of Carlow.

Mary White was told by Sally Keegan of Bridewell Lane to call Sylvestor Deegan, of John Street, Carlow, a bonesetter of repute to set her husband's leg in the proper fashion, as it was apparent to the aforesaid Sally Keegan that William Ryan, Surgeon, had made a hames of doing so the previous day.

Sylvester Deegan came to the house with others, namely, James Reddy, John Hendrick, Mark Deer and Thomas Murphy to hold down her husband Richard White while Sylvester Deegan made to open the fracture and set it.

Bernard Murphy of Castle Hill administered a pot of homemade strong Spirits brewed by Henry Nowlan of Bridewell Lane, to have Richard drink in order to deaden the pain.

Sylvester Deegan left her husband in some ease and the pain stopped for only a little time, within the hour the leg swelled in an alarming manner.

Mary White was told to send for Mary Doyle, a Handy Woman of repute of Bridewell Lane to bleed the leg and head and place Leeches on the several wounds opened by Mary Doyle thereby to bleed the leg and head.

Such was the pain and inconvenience her husband suffered and caused by the fracture that he could be heard roaring out on the road, her husband drank the remainder of the homemade Spirits supplied by Henry Nowlan.

On that same day William Ryan, Surgeon, called to the house and expressed his displeasure at his good work being interfered with and told her not to call on him again in any circumstances, he then demanded five shillings for payment, she could only render him three shillings and four pence, half-penny, he then told her that as Richard White was in this situation as it now manifested itself so he would die (roaring).

Several hours later Richard White was calling loudly for Doctor Reede to have his leg taken off, she called on Doctor Reede who informed her that he could not undo the work of a Renegade so called bonesetter and said her husband would have to be buried with his leg intact. The leg was many times its normal size, on the 22nd day of May she called again on Sylvester Deegan who came to the house and broke the fracture again and set it again, and cutting some bone in doing so that it would set in a natural position, during this procedure Richard White was held down by several neighbours.

Patrick McQuirke, Publican, of Potato Market, gave Richard some Bonded Spirits to drink, Henry Nowlan  brought an extra pot of homemade Spirits and administered same to her husband, she will now testify that it is her belief that the homemade Spirits was illegal brew.

Mary Doyle then cut more incisions to stop the swelling and placed Leeches on the open wounds.

Richard White languished in great pain and died within three days, she is now left a poor widow with seven young children and further sayth not, Sworn before me this 24th day of May 1820,

(signed) Robert Fishbourne, one of his Majestys Magistrates for the Peace in Carlow.

It be advised that Henry Nowlan of Bridewell Lane be taken into custody and held in the Jail of Carlow until the next assizes of Carlow to stand trial for the brewing of illegal Black Pot Whiskey.

(signed) Benjamin Bunbury, one of his Majestys Magistrates for the Peace in Carlow.

Note from Michael Purcell:

[Readers may have noticed some anomalies in the Richard White case the 1820 bonesetter was at times recorded as Sylvester / Sylvestor Deegan elsewhere Duigan...(Deegan appears to be correct)...the Coroner James Byrne appears on some forms to be James Ryan (Byrne is correct)..depends on who was completing the forms,....I usually try to check other sources and correct before posting but in this instance there were 8 pages of reports dealing with Richard White's injury and death so I posted all the variations in our three emails as they were recorded on originals as example to readers of the problems in transcribing some documents.]

 1820 PPP Files - [ Page 2 ] [ Page 3 ] [ Page 4 ]

Source: Michael Purcell c.2011

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