Murder & Robbery - The Story of John Gallaher (Gallagher)


John Gallaher (Gallagher ?) Tombstone

As I was taking photos in the Holy Cross - Mill Creek Cemetery, I came across this monument. It reads "John, Son of R & S Gallaher - Murdered - Sept 19 1876" With the help of our FaceBook group, we found "the rest of the story".

This story was in the Clinton Lyons Weekly Mirror, Saturday, September 23, 1876:

Murder and Robbery.

One of the most dastardly pieces of deviltry which has ever been know in this section was perpetrated upon Richard Gallagher, on Tuesday night last, who lives some miles above Lyons on the railroad. His house which is a lonely one was entered by murderous theives. Admittance being denied them the door was battered down with a log of wood, and the five entered and demanded money of the occupant. Upon being assured by Gallagher that he had none, he was set upon and pounded with rocks until he became insensible. Gallagher's son appearing to assist his father, he was terribly beaten and stabbed by the murderous crew, and thrust through a window, lighting in a cellar way, where he lay, insensible. Having disposed of the occupants, the house was ransacked, and $150 in silver quarters secured.

The house in which the affray occured is a long structure, the kitchen being in the center, the front room in the east end, and the bedroom in the west. The old man was sleeping in the front room, and his son occupied the bedroom. The blood thirsty villans first entered the front room, and attacked it occupant, demanding money. They were answered that the only money in the house was six silver quarters which were in the sugar bowl. At this a sheet was twisted into a rope and put about the man's neck, with one pulling at each end. Another powerful fellow was upon the breast with his knee, and choking him, while others were pounding and cutting him, and demanding money. At this juncture the son, John Gallagher, entered and joined his father. A terrible battle ensued, and the walls of the room is spattered in blood in many places. Five against two was too much odds, and the Gallaghers were overcome. While the thieves were engaged with the young man, his father stole away and crawled into the weeds some ten rods from the house, thus saving his life.

After the younger man had been thrown into the cellar-way, his head was beaten with rocks, and he was left for dead.

The remained in this condition until morning, when Mrs. O'Brien, who had been cooking for them, arrived to prepare their breakfast. She soon raised an alarm, and a doctor was summoned from Lyons. The father was terribly beaten and bruised, but the prospect is that he will recover.

Last night, about 6 o'clock, the son died of the injuries received, and this morning Coroner Adams went out to hold an inquest.

The thieves are not known, but it is suppoed they are the same men who robbed the depots at Bryant, Almont and Lyons. -- Advertiser.

Dr. Wetherell, who conducted the post mortem examination, aided by Dr. MacQuigg, reports the old man out of danger.

The jury impanneled by the Coroner consisted of Messrs. J. S. Stratton, Charles Westbrook and W. W. Buell. No decision has yet been rendered, as they are awaiting further developments.

Wm. Crawford and Jas. Twoey are under arrest at Clinton, on suspicions of being two of the gang also the woman for whom Rexford was murdered, who has kept house for the Gallaghers.

Clinton Lyons Weekly Mirror Saturday, September 30th, 1876

The Gallagher Murder

The Coroners Jury on the Gallagher murder case have not yet rendered a verdict. James Twoey and Wm. Crawford have been in the County jail, and Mollie Jones in the Clinton lock up, since their arrest on the 15th, until Thursday, when they, with the wives of the two former, were before Justice Mathews for an examination, which is still progressing at this writing. Old man Gallagher thought he recognized the two men as ones among his assailants. Sunday, James Cooley and Michael Monchan were arrested near Sabula, and brought to Clinton by Deputy Sheriff of Jackson county, on suspicion of complicity in the affair, but after a hearing before Justice Matthews, they were discharged, proving an alibi to the staisfaction of all concerned.

Clinton Lyons Weekly Mirror Saturday, October 7th, 1876

Held for Trial

The preliminary examination of Wm. Crawford, James Tohey and Molly Jones, which was in progress before Justice Mathews at our last issue, was closed on the 2d inst, the woman being discharged and the two men held for trial on charge of murdering Gallagher, and they are now confined in the county jail. Wallace and May, who were arrested on suspicion of having been concerned in the robbery and murder, were both discharged.

Clinton Lyons Weekly Mirror Saturday, December 2nd, 1876

District Court

The impanneling of a jury for the trial of Wm. Crawford, one of the supposed Gallagher murderers, was commenced, but as he escaped the following night, that business was dropped Tuesday morning.

Clinton Lyons Weekly Mirror Saturday, May 12th, 1877

CRAWFORD, who was arrested on charge of having a hand in the Gallagher murder, and escaped, is said to be in Indiana.


And that's all I can find in the Weekly Mirror at this time. If anyone has anything further to add, I'd be glad to post it - Nettie Mae