Some summer reading, the last is the story of Mr. Linscombe who was hanged at his own door.
When the great rebellion broke out in 1641, Clonakilty suffered severely.It had no walls to protect it, and it was therefore almost at the mercy of any persons who choose to walk in and help themselves to the property of its inhabitants.
On one occasion, Joan Barry*marched into the town at the head of three hundred women, and ransacked every house that was in it.There was no opposing these Amazons.With one weapon in their fists, and another between their teeth, they could bewilder as well as pommel their antagonists. Quickly they overspread devoted Clonakilty.Like a swarm of locusts they pitched upon everything.The curiosity and the pillaging proclivities of Joan's "red shanks," left nothing escape them.These unwomanly women stuffed everything into their bottomless wallets.Candies and taffety were in all likelihood wedged in with silks and picked pork, whilst salt fish and ribbons were in juxtaposition with pots of pomatum and new-laid eggs.
After bringing her regiment of rebels together, they set out for home; but whether they fell on or fell out on the line of march-whether they helped one another with their knapsacks, or scrawled one another's eyes out-we are not able to say.At all events they walked off. leaving many a full heart behind them and an empty shelf.
But Joan was not the only one who visited Clonakilty with bad intentions.Teige O'Hea, of Kilgarriff, made off with the cattle of one townsman, and, in conjunction with Garrett Arundell, of Ring, he robbed another.
Cornelius Crowly†disarmed another settler, and he stripped him his wife and three children, in the beginning of the month of February, and left them, "with divers others, to the number of five-and-forty,"‡to shiver in the cold.§
*Joan Barry was a widow lady.She lived at Mucrus, and was the mother of David McPhillip Barry, a captain in the rebel army.
†Teige O'Hea, Garrett Arundell, and Captain Crowly were indicted for treason at the great sessions held at Yougal, August 2nd, 1642, and outlawed subsequently in the King's Bench.
‡See MSS. Trinity College, Dublin
‡Amongst those stripped were:- John Justice, of Clonakilty, and his son, Edward;Mills and his son, and his son's wife and three children;Cahpman Sheapheard, his wife and children;Ellen Duffill, Mabel Hollowell, Mary Ware, - Cotter.They were stripped in John Baker's house in Clonakilty, on the 10th of February, 1642.
Donogh O'Shea, of Ring, robbed another townsman, and then took away his clothes.
Dermod Duffe took a man's coat and hat away, and "then took some necessaries from his pocket."And "one Tom Barry." who pretended to be a friend of another Clonakilty man, kept tow trunks full of clothes, two brass kettles, a sword, a brass skillet, and divers other small things which he was entrusted to take care of by a poor fellow whose wife the rebels murdered the year before.
Several of the townspeople made their escape to Bandon; and one of them (Walter Bird), contrived to take the charter and other corporation documents with him; but many of them remained-amongst others, Mr. Linscombe, the sovereign.He, poor fellow, was a very quiet, inoffensive man, and the Irish-with whom he appeared to be a favourite-assured him that there was no fear whatever of him; and we have no doubt but that several of the leaders of the great movement in this quarter*intended to dispossess the colonists of their lands, and redress some of their alleged grievances-but no more.But when once their followers had tasted blood, their thirst became insatiable.Laying hold of Mr. Linscombes, they forced him to drink until his nauseated stomach rejected the fluid, and then they hanged him at his own door.