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Pardon Of A Life Convict

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A few days before the expiration of his term of office as Ohief Magistrate of Indiana, Gov. Hondricks pnrdoned Leander B. McKinney, a once noted desperado, who was sent to the State Prison South twenty years ago froin Bartholomew county for murder. "Never in the history of thíí ñoiitilern Prison," saya the .Jeffereon Netos, "has there been a conviot who had so inany and such influential frienda to intercede in his behalf. ïhe efforts to obtain the benefit of exeoutive clemency for 'Buck' - so called familiarly - go back to the beginning of the late war. The flrst move was made by Gen. Rousseau, row deceased. Buck had served with the General in the Mexican war, and when Gen. Rousseau was aeeigned to his oommand in Camp Joo Holt he met his old comrade in arma. He knew he was a good man, with one exception, and he commenced a move for McKinney's pardon. Bince that time the iriends of McKinney havo been untiring in their efforts to relieve him from his long and weary eonfinement. Buck was a general favorite, and has been called upon at the prison by Governors, Senators, Congressmen, and other public men, who deemed it no degradation to take him warmly by the hand. Gov. Willard, previous to his visit to Wisconsin, where he died, had signified his intention of pardoning McKinney, but never had a chance of redeeming his promise. Lieut. Gov. Hammond, who succeeded Willard, made a similar promise, but we presume he yielded to I the stroug pressure whieh always carne up from Oolumbus, proteating against the pardon. Gen. Roussoau's move would have suoceeded bat for a Colum bils man aceidentally hearing of it at the depot in this city. He hastened to that ' place, and upon giving the information the fire-bells were rung 'calling a public meeting, which sent up strong resolutions donouncing the project to free McKinnoy. Gov. Morton was considering the pardon in a very reasonable light, but the public indignation put au end to it, and sealed McKinney 's fate for a term of years longer. His case was laid before Gov. Baker, but, despite all MoKiiiney's inflnential friends, the protest ef Bartholomew county ngain dofeated it. Ever sinco Gov. Hondrieks' inauguration MoKinnej's friends have renewed their oxertions, but thoy have had the same obstecles to contend with all along until this f all; They seemed to feel the necessity of success this year, and feit it wan now or nevor. They were fortúnate in securing the withdrawal of the opposition of all but two persons, but still Gov. Hendricks hesitated, and on Tuesday week laid away the papers, núned to reiuse tlie pardon, 'Unie rau on until the last day of Hendricks' term, during wbich McKinney was in tho mont iBtoitoo miopoof n.Hio Wing fcy day nor sleoping at night. McKinnoy abandoned all hope Saturday night. On Monciay morning Ooi. Keigwin went to Gov. Hendricks' offtce and said to kim, ' Governor, I think about the last official Kct you do ought to be to pardon Buck McKioney.' The Goyernor looked up, without a twinkle in his eye, and said, ' ïhat eau never be. ' 'That is miglity hard,' said Col. Keigwin. 'Buck iiieKinney can never be pardonedout of that Penitentiary 'I am mighty sorry,' said the disappointed Colonel. At this Gov. Hendrioks thought he had tortured Keigwin sufficiently, and he added : ' lt can't be done, because it's already done, and there is the document. I have just pigned it.' Thus ended perhaps the roost famous stiuggle ever exerted for executive clemency. It extended turottgb. the terras of four different Governois, and included in its adherents a larger list of friends than any convict ever previously had interei-.ted in his behalf."


Old News
Michigan Argus