Parish Register of Braddan.

Document No. 119.

The following entry in the parish register of Kirk Braddan of a marriage in the church is interesting in the light of Governor Dawson’s letter of the following year. The Vicar, the Rev. Thomas W. J. Woods, at the foot of the entry makes the following note: ' Both the witnesses hanged for Robbery — together with one Tracy — being of the Manx Fencibles — Irishmen'.



John Maccan and Elinor Burnum both of Douglas were marryd in this Church by License this 23rd day of Augt 1780. By me : Tho. W. J. Woods, Vicr.

This marriage was solemnized between us —-

John Maccan his x mark. Elinor Maccan late Burnurn her mark x in presence of James Gallaugher his mark x Roger McGongell his mark x.

It appears that the prison at Castle Rushen at the end of the 18th century was in a shocking condition. After Lieut.-Governor Dawson’s letter to the Home Office in 1781, the Governor, Edward Smith (1777-1793), a man equally humane in spirit, made strong representations to London on the condition of the gaol in Castle Rushen. No provision had been made in the Act of Revestment for the maintenance of the prison and its inmates. Felons’ fines and forfeitures were no longer available for the purpose, and for many years the unfortunate prisoners were kept alive only by the benevolence of the Governor and some members of the public.

After 1765 parts of the Castle had fallen into a ruinous state, the inner ward being without roof or floors. Governor Smith protested that prisoners were exposed to the weather and starving from cold and hunger and that ‘ the late executed felons ‘ [i.e., Tracey and Gallagher] driven to desperation had, on one occasion, broken out of prison

 return to Index

Index Unpublished Docs


Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
HTML Transcription © F.Coakley , 1999