Hence, insanity is hereditary in the family.

"2. For nine years the prisoner at the bar did not adequately support his family. Strong circumstantial evidence of insanity.

"3. For nine years he made of his home, as a general thing, a poor-house; sometimes (but very rarely) a cheery, happy habitation; frequently the den of a beery, drivelling, stupefied animal; but never, as far as ascertained, the abiding place of a gentleman. These be evidences of insanity.

"4. He once took his young unmarried sister-in-law to the museum; while there his hereditary insanity came upon him to such a degree that he hiccupped and staggered; and afterward, on the way home, even made love to the young girl he was protecting. These are the acts of a person not in his right mind.

"5. For a good while his sufferings were so great that he had to submit to the inconvenience of having his wife give public readings for the family support; and at times, when he handed these shameful earnings to the barkeeper, his haughty soul was so torn with anguish that he could hardly stand without leaning against something. At such times he has been known to shed tears into his sustenance till it diluted to utter inefficiency. Inattention of this nature is not the act of a Democrat unafflicted in mind.

"6. He never spared expense in making his wife comfortable during her occasional confinements. Her father is able to testify to this. There was always an element of unsoundness about the prisoner's generosities that is very suggestive at this time and before this court.

"7. Two years ago the prisoner came fearlessly up behind Richardson in the dark, and shot him in the leg. The prisoner's brave and protracted defiance of an adversity that for years had left him little to depend upon for support but a wife who sometimes earned scarcely anything for weeks at a time, is evidence that he would have appeared in front of Richardson and shot him in the stomach if he had not been insane at the time of the shooting.

"8. Fourteen months ago the prisoner told Archibald Smith that he was going to kill Richardson. This is insanity.

"9. Twelve months ago he told Marshall P. Jones that he was going to kill Richardson. Insanity.

"10. Nine months ago he was lurking about Richardson's home in New Jersey, and said he was going to kill Richardson. Insanity.

"11. Seven months ago he showed a pistol to Seth Brown and said that that was for Richardson. He said Brown testified that at that time it seemed plain that something was the matter with McFarland, for he crossed the street diagonally nine times in fifty yards, apparently without any settled reason for doing so, and finally fell in the gutter and went to sleep. He remarked at the time that McFarland acted strange--believed he was insane. Upon hearing Brown's evidence, John W. Galen, M.D., affirmed at once that McFarland was insane.

"12. Five months ago, McFarland showed his customary pistol, in his customary way, to his bed-fellow, Charles A. Dana, and told him he was going to kill Richardson the first time an opportunity offered. Evidence of insanity.

"13. Five months and two weeks ago McFarland asked John Morgan the time of day, and turned and walked rapidly away without waiting for an answer. Almost indubitable evidence of insanity. And--

"14. It is remarkable that exactly one week after this circumstance, the prisoner, Daniel McFarland, confronted Albert D. Richardson suddenly and without warning, and shot him dead. This is manifest insanity. Everything we know of the prisoner goes to show that if he had been sane at the time, he would have shot his victim from behind.

"15. There is an absolutely overwhelming mass of testimony to show that an hour before the shooting, McFarland was ANXIOUS AND UNEASY, and that five minutes after it he was EXCITED. Thus the accumulating conjectures and evidences of insanity culminate in this sublime and unimpeachable proof of it. Therefore--

"Your Honor and Gentlemen--We the jury pronounce the said Daniel McFarland INNOCENT OF MURDER, BUT CALAMITOUSLY INSANE."

The scene that ensued almost defies description.

Mark Twain
Classic Literature Library

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