As might be expected under the circumstances, so thoroughly enshrouded in mystery, there are innumerable theories advanced concerning the tragedy. A keen observer of the history of the neighborhood, the intricate doings of the Donnellys, and the evidence of the little boy, must come to but one conclusion, and it is shared in by all who have taken the trouble to ascertain the facts as well as those who have lived in the vicinity of the Roman Line or Eight and Ninth Road. To form a basis for this theory it would be necessary to trace the history of a family whose career has been unusually eventful. For a period extending over a dozen years the Donnelly's have had enemies, but whether these enemies were formed through any malicious action on their part, or merely through supposed injury, it does not lie within the province of the writer to say. Suffice it, that whenever these persons were injured in any way they laid the blame directly on the shoulders of this unfortunate family, ant the result was a constant succession of law suits. In this manner the name of Donnelly became familiar in city courts, and from the bare fact of the charges against them they grew to be obnoxious to many who had really never suffered at their hands. [...]

Source: Unknown, "The Inquest," St. Marys Argus, February 12, 1880.

Return to parent page