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Broadside entitled 'Riot in Stirling', 1823


Riot in Stirling.      

An account of a serious riot which took
place in Stirling on Saturday the
19th April, 1823. when two dis
turbers of the Dead were almost torn
to pieces by the populace, and a party
of soldiers being brought from the
Castle to quell the riot, fired on the
mob, when several persons were

On the evening of Saturday the 19th of April last, a serious af-
fray took place in Stirling. The populace, whose dislike ever'y
where to the resurrection men is so well known, assembled in a
tamultuous manner, and attacked the houses and persons of Jas.
M'Nab and Daniel Mitchell, who had been that day dismissed
from the bar of the Justiciary Court, their trial for violating the
sepulchres of the dead having been deserted pro loco et tempore.
The poor men escaped with much difficulty, and were forced to
take refuge in the prison from which they had just been liberated.

Mr M'Donald of Staffa, Sheriff of the county, Provost Thom-
son, and Captain Jeffrey of the 77th regiment, used every exer-
tion, and exposed themselves greatly in the attempt to lodge one
of the men Mitchell safe in the jail, the other having been carried
thither without much difficulty. Finding all their endeavours
fruitless, they were under the necessity of calling in a party of the
77th, So soon as the military arrived, Mitchell was brought
down from the house where he had taken refuge; but whenever
he was discovered by the populace, there was an instantaneous
mob, accompanied with the most threatening exclamations. The
mob, especially those near the mouth of the close, became quite
infuriated and unmanageable at the sight of him ; but notwith-
stand all this, they confined themslves to expressions of indigna-
tion, and offered no violence or outrage during the first part of
the act of removal, nor till the Provost and Sheriff had reached
the back, or south side of the jail, with the prisoner At this
moment, one of the soldiers who was near the Sheriff, being
unfortunately much intoxicated, fell down among the crowd, at
which moment the Sheriff was observed to help him up, and
conduct him with in the line of soldiers. directing one of his com-
rades to take charge of his firelock. This accident having creat-
ed some confusion, by enabling the mob to .press more closely on
the soldiers,one of the latter, by using his musket indiscreetly, and
striking the crowd violently with the butt end of it, occasioned
much irritation ; so much so, that at length two of the crowd at-
tempted to take the flselock from him, which induced him to fire.
Immediately on this, one or two more shots were fired, and an
attempt to charge on the populace by some, while others of the
military showed much forbearance, and seconded the efforts o
their commanding officers to bring their companions to order
Sexeral of the men were in a state of intoxication, and but little
under the control of any authority whatever. Stones were thrown
ndiscriminately from various quarters against the soldiers, some
of whom were knocked down.

Fortunately none of ahe shots took effect; from which circumstance
it is to be presumed that the object of the military was more to intimi-
date than to take away life. Two or three of the inhabitants were
slightly wounded by the bayonet, .and one young man received a danger-
ous wound a little below the breast. Several of the soldiers received

We are informed that the Sheriff, accompanied by the Provost im-
mediately proceeded to the Castle, in order to ascertain the names of
tbe soldiers who fired. This Captain Jeffray at once furnished. Such
a measure was most proper ; for it is evident that as no order was given
to the military by a Magistrate or by a Commanding Officer, those who
flred were guilty of a breach of the peace. We understand five of then
were immediately placed in condemnation. It was about half-past
eight when the disturbance terminated.

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Date of publication: 1823   shelfmark: Ry.III.a.2(35)
Broadside entitled 'Riot in Stirling', 1823
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