Thursday, March 23, 2006

When Being Irish Meant You Were Guilty

There was a time in this country when being Irish and Catholic was dangerous to a person’s health. In 1806 in Northampton, MA, two Irishman discovered just how dangerous it could be. Irish immigrants James Halligan and Dominic Daley were in the wrong place at the wrong time. A young boy picked them out as the two men he had seen “acting suspiciously” shortly before the murder of a farm boy whose body was found in the Chicopee River.

On the flimsiest of circumstantial evidence the two Irishmen were convicted and hung. Several years later another man confessed to the murder. In 1994 Gov. Michael Dukakis issued a proclamation exonerating Daley and Halligan. Now author Michael C. White has brought their story to life in a novel based on their story, “The Garden of Martyrs.”

The town of Northampton, Ma, commemorated the two innocent men this St. Patrick's Day.

“The Garden of Martyrs” by Michael White – The entire, tragic story.

2 hanged Irish remembered

The Daley & Halligan Bicentennial Commemoration

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