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SHOCKING TRAGEDY AT SYDNEY.

MURDER OF A WIPE AND CHILD.

SUICIDE OF THE MURDERER,

A shocking tragedy occurred at Pyrmont on the 4th inst. A young man named Ralph Manahan killed his wife and his son, three years old, and then committed suicide. Manahan, who was thirty years of age, was a native of Jamaica. He had a violent and capricious temper, and frequently ill-used his wife, who was a young and attractive woman. The couple had been married only four years, having spent most of that time in Queensland. They lived in a cottage in Allan street, where the tragedy occurred, with Mrs Moses, the mother of Mrs Manahan, during the past twelve months, and the relations between the parties in this house appear to have been anything but happy, Manahan, who was a commercial traveller, and was a sober, careful business man, returned from a visit to Newcastle a day or two ago. Shortly before noon on Saturday a neighbor, who was in the dining room, stated that he then went to the sofa where his son was lying ill, kissed him, and joined his wife, who was playing on the piano. After a few moments’ conversation between them two pistol reports were heard, accompanied by a piercing shriek from Mrs Manahan. Tiie husband then entered the dining room with a revolver in his hand, and the neighbor who had been in that apartment made her escape. Mrs Moses was coming downstairs after hearing the reports, when she met Manahan, who pointed the revolver at her, and she rushed back to the bedroom for shelter. Another report was heard, possibly being that of the shot which killed the boy Isadora. Two farther shots were subsequently fired, completing the work of murder and suicide. The body of the boy was found lying on the sofa, with a wound in the right temple, the bullet having passed through his head, and bulged out the skull on the opposite side. On the floor in the front room lay the bodies of Manahan and his wife, the former still breathing, but almost dead from the effects of a wound at the,back of the right ear. He lingered only a short time. Mrs Manahan was quite dead, with three distinct wounds—one in the middle of the forehead, a second in the right temple, and a third in the right cheek. The bodies lay in great pools of blood, and between them in the middle of the room was a six-chambered revolver. A letter was found on the body of Manahan, which showed clearly that ho had fully premeditated the taking of the lives of his wife and child, and then committing suicide. He wrote to Mr Moses and to friends attributing the whole of his domestic unhappiness to the interference of his mother-in-law. He stated that he was unable to get his wife to leave her mother, and he thought it better to kill her and the boy and then do away with himself. In one letter he gave clear instructions for the funeral arrangements, which he wished to have carried out with money which he had left on the previous day with a friend for the purpose of paying the burial expenses, and he spoke in the most coldblooded fashion of his desire that they should all be put in " one hole.” Im these letters Manahan professes the greatest love for his wife, who, however, had been estranged from him through her mother. Ho also refers to some improper conduct on the part of his wife at Townsville, and he speaks of “Death before dishonor.”

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/ESD18890515.2.19

Bibliographic details

SHOCKING TRAGEDY AT SYDNEY., Evening Star, Issue 7907, 15 May 1889

Word Count
603

SHOCKING TRAGEDY AT SYDNEY. Evening Star, Issue 7907, 15 May 1889

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