Friday, 23 September 2011
I have created a new papercut based on the tale of a local Derry legend called Half Hung MacNaughton.
The story goes that MacNaughton was a down at heel part of the Irish gentry, who claimed to have fallen in love with a young heiress, Mary Ann Knox from Derry. However, her father did not give consent to their marriage. In November 1761, an attempt by MacNaghten and his followers to abduct Mary Ann from a carriage on a journey to Strabane and elope with her failed, when he shot and mortally wounded her by mistake. A court found MacNaghton guilty of murder and he was sentenced to execution by hanging. So distraught with grief was he by the death of his love that MacNaghton is alleged to have hurled himself from the gallows with such force that the rope broke. Some versions say that this was divine intervention and MacNaghton could not be hanged for a second time; others say that he could have used the cover of a sympathetic crowd to make good his escape but he chose not to. Instead John MacNaghton freely re-ascended the gallows to be hanged successfully.
This is the first in a series of paper cuts that I am planning to do on this subject.
So if your in Ireland go enjoy the nearest event to you and if you in and around Derry then please pop in to the Culture Offices and say hello!