Brutal Massacre by the Police

On Monday 28 January 1833 four policemen, namely Sergeant Webb, sub-constables Wade, Carter and Mooney marched from their barracks in Louisburgh to serve summonses on several of Sir William Brabazon’s tenantry, residing in the village of Wasteland, in the parish of Kilgeever. The charge against these men was gathering sea weed, drifted on a shore, the property of the Marquis of Sligo.

After the summonses were served and the police on their return home, some women in the village shouted after a man who informed against them, a caretaker of Lord Sligo of the name of Thomas Marley of Devlin, who came and returned in the company of the police. Upon this insult being offered to their respectable associate, the police faced about and fired at three men who were standing at their doors. One of them named John McGreal they killed. Two others, John McGreal and Anthony Armstrong, they dangerously wounded with small shot.

Freeman’s Journal, Saturday 2 February 1833.


On Sunday 22 January 1843 a numerously attended and respectable meeting was held in the chapel yard at Louisburgh, for the purpose of expressing their undying devotion to the glorious cause of national independence and to appoint Repeal Wardens. At two o’clock Fr McManus, P.P. was called to the chair and he addressed the vast assemblage, advocating the necessity of a national parliament as the only cure for the enormous evils which afflict Ireland. The reverend gentleman passed a glowing eulogium to the invincible champion of Ireland’s rights, Daniel O’Connell and said that the Loyal National Repeal Association possessed his unbounded and unlimited confidence. This sentiment met with a hearty response from the meeting.

Fr McManus at the conclusion of his speech, named eight or ten active persons to act as wardens, all of whom pledged themselves to work most assiduously in collecting the Repeal rent [usually a penny per person per week]. The assembled thousands then dispersed in the most orderly manner, cheering for the Queen, O’Connell and Repeal.

Freeman’s Journal, Friday 3 February 1843.


Comments about this page

  • Anne, perhaps if you ask your question on the Message Board you might have more luck with a response as this message is confined to this page on the site? Hope this helps.

    By Editor (26/06/2012)
  • Brenda, Do you know where the Village of Wasteland is (or was) and if it has a different name now? My great grandmother Bridget Durcan married William O’Malley Of Corrymailley (Curra) in Chapel Louisburgh 1883. She gave her address as Wasteland on the marriage record. I am trying to find record of her birth and I don’t know where to look. Kind Regards Anne

    By Anne Byrne (25/06/2012)

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