On Sept. 30, 1814, Mary Antoine
aka Antone, 21, a Native American, was hanged in Peterboro, Madison
County, for murder. New York State.
The above mentioned second
instance of capital crime had its denouncement in Smithfield, the
murderess, Mary Antone, (daughter of Abram,) being executed in
Peterboro in the autumn of 1814.
The Indians disputed the right of
the white-man authorities to interfere with their customs, or to
exercise jurisdiction over them in criminal or other cases where the
parties were of their race, and it was feared that there would be
trouble at the execution, as Abram Antone and one of his sons, Mary's
father and brother, came over from Siloam painted and equipped in
warrior style a few days before the consummation of the fatal decree;
and there was also a report afloat that Antone had said that " the man
who hung Mary should die."
Thus forewarned, Capt. Daniel
Petrie signified to the members of his company that they must hold
themselves in readiness, for they would be called on in case of any
The Indians were quite numerous
in the village on the morning of the execution, and Capt. Petrie,
having a good knowledge of the Indian language, took the occasion, as
they lounged about his store, to make it plain to them that Madison
County officers in carrying out the laws were not responsible for the
execution of Mary Antone; that the laws must be obeyed, and also that
order must be maintained. In their hearing, he directed some of his
men present to have their arms in readiness to protect the officers.
The gallows was erected on the
flat due west from the grist mill, and some twelve or fifteen rods
from the channel of the creek. Abram was there, grim, restless,
silent; sometimes moving about on the brow of the ridge above the
flat, scanning the multitude with a keen eye.
There is a statement given the
author that he was heard to make the ominous threat, as he pointed to
Sheriff Pratt, "Me kill him ! Me kill him !" and that the Sheriff,
before performing the final act, called for Antone to come forward and
take a last leave of his child; that the latter's sinewy form appeared
upon the scaffold, and without moving a muscle of his stoical
features, took the hand of his daughter and then turned silently away,
neither betraying a sign of emotion.
The fatal moment came and passed,
justice was vindicated without even a whispered utterance or move of
opposition from the natives. It is said, however, that Antone
afterwards sought Sheriff Pratt's life and that the latter settled his
affairs and moved west. Be this as it may, those who lived at that
time know how surely Antone executed his threats, and how long he
cherished and finally wreaked his vengeance on John Jacobs, the
principal witness against his daughter.
Mary Antone had murdered another
Indian girl who was her rival in a love affair. Mary was convicted and
executed in Peterboro on September 30, 1814. Sheriff Pratt had decided
the hanging should be a public one in his hometown.
On September 30, 1814, Mary
Antoine aka Antone, 21, a Native American, was hanged in Peterboro,
Madison County, for murder.
An Oneida, Mary fatally stabbed
with a knife another woman, also a Native American, with whom Mary's
boyfriend, from the Stockbridge tribe, had taken up after ending his
relationship with Mary.
The witness whose testimony at trial most helped
convict her was a local farmer named John Jacobs. He figured also in
her apprehension for the crime.
Appearing unremorseful about her violent act, Mary
was quoted as saying that the victim deserved to die for taking away
On the day of execution, authorities had arranged
for her father, Abram, and brother who lived on a farm near Siloam to
say their good-byes to her. They did so on the scaffold, stoically
shaking hands without sign of emotion and then walking away without
However, Abram had openly vowed before and after
his daughter's execution that he would kill Jacobs whom he blamed for
Mary's death. For years, Jacobs stayed away from Madison County. But
reportedly after receiving assurances transmitted to him from Abram
that no harm would befall him, Jacobs returned.
One day when Jacobs was hoeing a field with a group
of men, Abram approached in a friendly manner, shaking hands in
greeting each one in turn. But as he greeted Jacobs, Abram pulled a
knife and fatally stabbed him.
Eventually apprehended, Abram was tried, convicted
and sentenced to death.
Exactly nine years to the month after his
daughter's execution, the 73-year-old warrior -- he had fought on the
American side during the Revolution -- was hanged for killing the
prosecution's chief witness against her.