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Archive - Jun 29, 2011 - News Article

Chafee pardons man executed in 1845

June 29, 2011

PROVIDENCE — With the state embroiled in a modern-day struggle with the federal government over the death penalty, Gov. Lincoln Chafee signed a pardon Wednesday for the last man executed in Rhode Island, John Gordon, who was hanged in 1845 after a trial marked by witness mis-identifications and anti-Irish Catholic bigotry among the Yankee ruling class of the time.
Chafee signed the pardon at the historic Old State House on Benefit Street, in the room where Gordon's trial was conducted.

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