Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Another February blizzard in Ottawa “... And my blood runs cold ...”

Not this one from Feb 29, 1012

The tailor Patrick Whelan was hanged today, February 11, 1869 for the assassination of D’Arcy McGee on Sparks Street in Ottawa (it's pretty questionable whether he was truly the guilty party).

Everything about “the tailor with the red whiskers” was noted by the newspapers. He first appeared in court wearing a small green rosette, a white vest, and garnet cuff links. On the final day, however, he came dressed in black, and upon hearing the dreaded verdict of guilty said from the dock:
 “Now I am held to be a black assassin. And my blood runs cold. But I am innocent. I never took that man’s blood.”

Here is a link to the Trial of Patrick James Whelan, from 1868 online here

Apparently 1869 was the snowiest winter on record in Ottawa and on this date a blizzard began that lasted 2 weeks - or a fortnight in more poetic terms.  The year before, the winter of 1867 - 1868 – Canada’s Confederation year, was the coldest on record.

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