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The confusion about the Murphy's

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The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby The Tallest Man » 24 Jan 2011, 19:57

We have 3 different Irish giant's with the name Murphy on the website (4 if you count Maggie Murphy but she can be left out of this post as she is not part of the confusion).

In chronological order, we have:

1) Patrick Murphy (1834-1862)
2) James Hugh Murphy (1842-1875)
3) Captain Hugh Murphy (1870-?)

I have reason to believe that some of the pictures we have on James Hugh Murphy's page are in fact pictures of Patrick Murphy. At least two other sources (Irish Giants)
list the person in the following image as Patrick Murphy:

Image

and on closer inspection of the images on Hugh Murphy's page there seem to be pictures of two different men. I now think that the real Hugh Murphy is the giant with the sash, and the other giant is the original Murphy: Patrick Murphy.

So far I thought this would be fairly easy, as Captain Hugh Murphy (born 1870) was from a later date. He first appeared in newspaper clippings in 1895, some 20 years after the previous Murphy had died. But then I found the following newspaper clippings:

Image

and

Image

The first of these clippings, from 1883!, talk about an Irish Giant Boy with the name Murphy. The second one, from 1887, talk about a giant (probably the same) and call him Hugh Murphy. Now, Hugh Murphy the Balrimore Giant had died for over a decade by then. Who could this be?

Exploring even further, I found more intesting clippings, including these:

Image


Image

Which proved to me that Patrick O'Brien also used to exhibit himself as Hugh Murphy. Could he be the same person as Murphy, the Irish Giant Boy? Patrick O'Brien was married in the same year as the newspaper clipping mentioning the Irish Giant Boy. Patrick O'Brien was 29 in that year, hardly a boy (and he had a moustache!). Coud Patrick O'Brien be the same person as in the newspaper clipping from 1887? Or do we have the date of birth of Captain Hugh Murphy wrong? Are some of the pictures of James Hugh Murphy's page Patrick Murphy? Anybody knows the truth about the Murphy's?

TTM
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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby Never Wrong » 24 Jan 2011, 20:35

Geez. Now this is tough - now we have O'Briens posing as Murphy's?
Do we really want to open this Pandora's box and further entangle this gordian knot?

I swear, I had just about figured out all the O'Briens (four or five?) and now this weirdness?

All is lost.

I'm pretty sure that there were 10 guys who were 6'7" to 7'4" who lived from 1850 to 1895 that decided every morning when they woke up whether they were going to go by Robinson, Shields, Murphy, or O'Brien for that particular day. Completely random as to what they picked on a particular day and they were all interchangeable and looked somewhat similar.
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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby The Tallest Man » 24 Jan 2011, 20:42

Never Wrong wrote:Geez. Now this is tough - now we have O'Briens posing as Murphy's?
Do we really want to open this Pandora's box and further entangle this gordian knot?


It seems that Patrick O'Brien once exhibited himself as Hugh Murphy, unless the newspaper got mixed up. But I have another clipping from a different newpaper with a different text stating the same.

I would love to solve this problem, or at least find out the truth if someone else already knows it. It's even better than Jean Bihin/Angus.

Never Wrong wrote:All is lost.


Patrick O'Brien seems to have lost it, because of all the confusion. He died in an asylum.

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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby Never Wrong » 24 Jan 2011, 20:44

The Tallest Man wrote:
Patrick O'Brien seems to have lost it, because of all the confusion. He died in an asylum.

TTM


Do you mean the George Parson's iteration of Patrick O'Brien or another one? Gotta be more specific when giving out a name like Patrick O'Brien in the context of giants.
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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby The Tallest Man » 24 Jan 2011, 20:47

Never Wrong wrote:
The Tallest Man wrote:
Patrick O'Brien seems to have lost it, because of all the confusion. He died in an asylum.

TTM


Do you mean the George Parson's iteration of Patrick O'Brien or another one? Gotta be more specific when giving out a name like Patrick O'Brien in the context of giants.


Yes, or Murphy as per the newspaper clipping from 1888 above.

TTM

btw. I think I have yet to come across the name George Parsons in any newspaper clipping.That'll be another research.
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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby Never Wrong » 24 Jan 2011, 20:48

O.k. so in March of 1888 a "Murphy" died in England widowing a 7'7" giantess who was in NY. Simultaneously a Giant named "O'Brien" died in NY - also and coincidentally widowing a 7'7" giantess in New York.

I get that they are two versions of the same story - but where did O'Brien (George Parsons) die - NYC or insane asylum in England?
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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby Never Wrong » 24 Jan 2011, 20:51

The Tallest Man wrote:
It's even better than Jean Bihin/Angus.

TTM


You're drunk. Not even close. This isn't nearly as good. Furthermore - I don't think it's as good as the Caley/Goshen/Orr confluence. I'll grant you it's better than the Shields and Robinson brother's mysteries though.
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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby Never Wrong » 24 Jan 2011, 20:53

The Tallest Man wrote:and on closer inspection of the images on Hugh Murphy's page there seem to be pictures of two different men. I now think that the real Hugh Murphy is the giant with the sash, and the other giant is the original Murphy: Patrick Murphy.


TTM


I think this is spot on. I've long thought that there were two different fellas on that page - just didn't put together that one could have been the original Patrick Murphy. Well done.
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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby The Tallest Man » 24 Jan 2011, 20:56

Never Wrong wrote:O.k. so in March of 1888 a "Murphy" died in England widowing a 7'7" giantess who was in NY. Simultaneously a Giant named "O'Brien" died in NY - also and coincidentally widowing a 7'7" giantess in New York.

I get that they are two versions of the same story - but where did O'Brien (George Parsons) die - NYC or insane asylum in England?


Don't know for sure. I am only guessing Murphy was O'Brien. But nothing is certain. But the trail is warm (not hot)...

And then there is the issue of Patrick Murphy and James Hugh Murphy, and who was Irish Giant Boy Murphy? I have several clippings of him (all of the same advert, different days of exhibition).

I wonder if this confusion is where Murphy's Law came from. :?

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Re: The confusion about the Murphy's

Postby The Tallest Man » 24 Jan 2011, 21:05

Never Wrong wrote:
The Tallest Man wrote:and on closer inspection of the images on Hugh Murphy's page there seem to be pictures of two different men. I now think that the real Hugh Murphy is the giant with the sash, and the other giant is the original Murphy: Patrick Murphy.


TTM


I think this is spot on. I've long thought that there were two different fellas on that page - just didn't put together that one could have been the original Patrick Murphy. Well done.


I am afraid I can't take any credit for that. First time I was made aware of this was when i received an e-mail from a serious collector saying that the page for James Hugh Murphy was wrong. Then, many Months later, I saw a website with the same information as the .pdf file linked to in the first post of this thread. I just needed to gather all information and the release of the documentary about Charles Byrne, The Irish Giant sparked this again. That is why I suggested an Irish Giant Month instead of just a John F. Carroll Month (not sure if you have read the thread).

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