This crime report begins: 'Awful Death and Confession of HARE, the notorious associate of Burke, the West Port murderer, who died in the parish of Orrey, County of Tyrone, on Saturday, the 29th May, 1841.' This sheet was published by G. Whitelaw.
Hare, equally as guilty as his accomplice Burke, escaped punishment by turning King's Evidence in return for his freedom. His fate was not quite as golden as promised, however. He travelled around Scotland for awhile but the case was so well known and caused such outrage, that there were riots when appeared. He is then believed to have lived in poverty in London for some time and he may even actually have died there possibly as late as 1860, rather than in his native Ireland in 1841.
Burke and Hare were Irish bodysnatchers and murderers, who worked around Edinburgh's Canongate area - eventually becoming local legends. They hit upon the idea of murdering vulnerable or solitary people (in an attempt not to get caught) so that they could sell the bodies for dissection. Hare turned King's Evidence and so was acquitted, but this secured the conviction of Burke, who was hanged on the 28th January 1829.
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Date of publication:
1841 shelfmark: Ry.III.a.6(052)
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