John McDonald

 
The Free Press
Cartersville, Georgia
March 15, 1883, page 3
 
Transcribed by:  
 

John McDonald Murdered.
He is Beaten and Kicked by Dave Grogan, from the Effects of Which he Died.

Euharlee, in this county, of late years has been the scenes of several serious encounters between its citizens. Our jail now holds two prisoners from this neighborhood, A. J. Thomas and Joe Broadwater, the former charged with murder and the latter with assault with intent to murder. And now these are to be added to, provided Dave Grogan is arrested. The criminal docket is full and it will occupy many weeks of court to dispose of them. Well, to our subject:

Tuesday of last week David Grogan was intoxicated and was hardly able to walk, when John McDonald, an Irish shoemaker of the village, volunteered to carry him home. They started, but when McDonald’s house was reached they concluded to go in and stop awhile. After sitting around and drinking up a half pint of whiskey they resumed their course towards Grogan’s house. Before leaving, though, Grogan borrowed four and half pounds of meal of McDonald. They arrived at Grogan’s house when McDonald refused to go in, saying that he did not want to disturb Grogan’s wife. Presently she came to the door and let them inside, asking McDonald if he was drunk too. He replied “no,” and sat down in front of the fire-place, beside Grogan, talking to him. Mrs. G. was in bed at the time and McDonald went to her bed and asked her to forgive Grogan, as they has a quarrel that day, McD. avowing that his purpose of coming with Grogan was to heal the breach between them. While McDonald was talking to her Grogan blew out the light and felled him to the floor with some blunt instrument, knocking him senseless. He revived in about ten minutes with Grogan kicking him unmercifully in the side. McDonald caught Grogan by the leg, finally threw him down and “covered” him. Here Grogan’s wife interfered, catching McDonald by the back of his shirt-collar and beating him. McDonald was pulled off and they fought standing up, when two negro boys came in and parted them. McDonald then went to his home complaining and continued to complain until Sunday evening about dark. Before his death he told several parties that he thought he would die from the effects of the wounds received in the difficulty. The coroner being notified of his death and the circumstances surrounding it, proceeded at once to the scene in company with Dr. Baker. A jury was soon summoned and a post mortem examination was held by the doctor. It was clear to all present that death was caused by the wounds in the side. After examining about ten witnesses the jury, composed of Dr. T. H. Baker, as foreman, L. E. Dempsey, S. C. Dodd, H. P. Gaines, L. S. Stephens and Peter Hammond, returned a verdict as follows:

“We, the jurors empanelled and sworn in the case of Johnnie McDonald, after hearing all the evidence in the case of said Johnnie McDonald, find that he came to his death from injuries received at the hands of David E. Grogan, with some instrument or implement unknown to us while in a personal altercation on the night of the 6th of March; and we further find Fannie Grogan an accessory.”

In making out the verdict it occupied only a few minutes, the jury being unanimous in the verdict rendered. Warrants were immediately issued for both, and Tuesday morning Mrs. Grogan, accompanied by her two children, were overtaken at Stilesboro, where she was arrested and brought to jail. She was to have a committal trial before ‘Squire Shaw yesterday, but up to the time of going to press we cannot learn what disposition will be made of her.

The deceased was a native of Ireland, a shoemaker by trade, and drove a good business at Euharlee but unfortunately he was addicted to drink, but nevertheless had a good heart; every one seemed to overlook his faults and helped him along. He was honest and when not drinking was at work. He leaves three small children, his wife having died a year or so ago. The above statement as to the cause of his death was made himself to several parties a day or so after the altercation and no one doubts it in the community. Grogan is a shiftless fellow, has a wife and two children, one an infant. Grogan’s domestic affairs did not run smoothly consequently they were always quarreling. He was jealous of almost every one in the section. At one time, so we learn, he went to a bridge near by and told his wife that he was going to drown himself when she told him to “Hop in, you ought to have done it ten years ago.” That was poor consolation for Grogan and he changed his mind. The people are anxious for his apprehension and conviction, and say they will leave no stone unturned to give him the benefit of the law.

Since the above was put in type we learn that proceedings against Mrs. Grogan have been stopped, as evidence enough to bind her over cannot be had. Soon as possible Mr. Joe Lowry, of Euharlee, started in pursuit of Grogan, and succeeded in running him down in Polk county Tuesday night, and lodging him in our county jail yesterday. Grogan had admitted to several that he and McDonald had fought, but denies stoutly that he struck him any serious blows; but McDonald dying from said wounds it makes a strong case against him. McDonald, soon after the difficulty, told several that he would not get over the hurts, and that Grogan had killed him. Much credit is due to Mr. Joe Lowry for the interest he has taken in the case and in capturing Grogan.

 

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