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> Issue 65 > Page 78 - Sheriff James C. MacKillop Remembers the Hanging of Emmett Sloane

Page 78 - Sheriff James C. MacKillop Remembers the Hanging of Emmett Sloane

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1994/1/1 (248 reads)

So one of the guards said to me, the third day, I think it was. He said, "I can't un? derstand this." He said, "That man never used to sleep in the daytime. The last 3 or 4 days, when we come back, he's in the cell there," he said, "and the first thing, he's snoring--sound asleep. And," he said, "the same way after supper." I wouldn't tell them. I had no authority to do what I was doing. And I didn't tell them. But we did this,right up until the day he died. We were great friends. NEWSPAPER (May 19,1930): Emmett Sloane (Cari Ander? son) to die on scaffold tomorrow morning. The din and noise emanating from the carpenters erecting the scaffold Saturday aftemoon was the only intimation that Sloane had that the death sentence was to remain unchanged, and that the law was to take its course. Not in the slightest did he blanch as the clanging of the carpenters' hammers broke upon the sombre stillness of the jail house • grim realization that the penalty demanded by the state for his capital of- COMPLETE LINE OF LUMBER & BUILDERS SUPPLIES VlSfr OUR SMOWfiOOM 252 HALFWAY RD?? SYDNEY iiHiNES DON-RAY LUMBER LTD. 736-9722 IF BUSY • 736-6201 OR 736-7334 FAX 736-9606 fense was to be paid in full. Later in the afternoon he was visited by his spiri? tual advisor, Rev. A. H. Campbell, pastor of the First United Church, who broke the news of the de? cision of the Ottawa au? thorities, which was re? ceived with utmost calmness by the con? demned man. Since his ultimate fate was sealed by the Supreme Court in March, Rev. Dr. Campbell has been daily with Sloane, and there exists a firm friendship. Several days previous. Dr. Camp? bell had infonned him that he had better be prepared for the worst. "Oh, yes, I know," was the only reply tendered by Sloane. Serving homes and businesses throughout Cape Breton Island ''''' 'm'''. ''m '''' Maple Leaf Products o( syhco' ENERGY FUELS 38 Lewis Drive Sydney River 539-6444 Almost simultaneously with the receipt of the decision of the Ot? tawa authorities was the arrival here Saturday morning of the executioner, Arthur Holmes {EDITOR'S NOTE: This is almost certainly an error in the newspaper of the day. Other evidence indicates that Sloane was hanged by Arthur Rioux of Montreal, the same person who one year later came back to Sydney to hang George Alfred Beckett), who is to officiate in the absence of John Ellis, official hangman, who is today attending to a simi? lar event in Chatham, Ontario. Pending his appearance on the scene, Mr. Holmes is remaining in absolute seclusion, and ef? forts to get in touch with him have proved futile. The scaffold, built directly to the rear of the jail house, is erect? ed on an even height with the second floor of the building. At the appointed hour, and under heavy guard, Sloane will be led away from the "death cage," which is situated at the farthest end of the corridor, through a rear window, and onto the floor of the scaffold • a distance, it is said, of not more than 6 foot? steps. The scaffold will undergo tests today by Mr. Holmes, and every precaution is being taken for the successful carrying out of the death penalty. Sheriff Jim MacKillop: When the scaffold was all completed, then they had to get the weight of Sloane. So we took a scale in, he stood on it, got his weight. Then they went and got a sandbag, filled it with sand to the same weight, and tied it onto the rope and sprung the trap. Now, that was to make sure everything was strong enough to do the job.... The morning of the day before the fatal hour, the jail doctor, the warden, and my? self came up to his cell. The doctor told him that he could have a tranquillizer at 11 o'clock tonight or he could have a drink of rum, starting at 11 o'clock, noontime, in the morning, with his dinner at dinnertime. "Now," he said, "it's your choice. What do you want?" He said, "I want the rum." And I went--I was told to get a taxi and go down to the liquor store and get a bottle of the most expensive rum they had in the store. I forget, now, what it cost, but he said it was good, any? way. ... He had an ounce of rum every hour up till 11 o'clock that night. Now, he was also allowed to order any? thing he wanted for his last supper. and that his request would come from a FURNACE OIL • STOVE OIL • DIESEL • GAS > LUBRICANTS ARITIME ERCHANT • Cape Breton's Free Classified Ad Paper • 562-0272 Serving Cape Bretoners Anywhere in the World To Buy, Sell, and Enjoy, place your free classiHed 2 in the Maritime Merchant by writing: Maritime Merchant P. 0. Box 641, Sydney, Nova Scotia BIP 6H7
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