Did You Know? (Bull Wrestling Can be Deadly)

On September 18, 1892, long after Dogtown had ceased to exist as a community, James Merry died in Dogtown.  He had a 3-year-old bull that he had previously successfully wrestled to the ground on a few occasions.  He decided to try it again.  This time the bull was having no part of it.  The first marker shows where James Merry was first attacked by his bull.  The second marker, a short distance away heading toward Dogtown Road, is where James Merry died of his injuries. 

E.J. Lefavour

13 thoughts on “Did You Know? (Bull Wrestling Can be Deadly)

  1. “…Dogtown Meadow…”?? It was pretty deep woods last weekend. Hard to conjure the fields of Mr. Merry’s last unfortunate attempt. I would love to see images of Dogtown as it was.


  2. James Merry was a fisher man back in days of yore
    But he left the blue in ninety-two for the trade of matador
    So he got a bull and he raised it up full
    And he learned the corrida lore
    Then he died like a toad on the Dogtown Road
    Bleeding from a stomach gore

    by Shep Abbott


  3. Judy, I wonder if Fred Bodin has any old Dogtown photos in his huge vintage photo collection. If you come up to go to his opening on the 3rd, you should ask him.
    Shep, not Olson, but pretty clever.


  4. There are tons of good stories out there about this incident including werewolves really did the deed. The best one I have found since they also looked it up in GDT is linked here. The bull was in Patrick Nugent’s pasture when James went up on a Sunday morning to meet his maker.


    I Pat the sign to Rockport as I drive on Nugent stretch and now I never forget. Or do I see Pat the pig at the pig farm? (This is where I repost Steven Wright’s quote about having a photographic memory. Most of the time I forget to load film.)


  5. Thanks Paul, that was a great addition. I love the personal interviews with the family’s of the involved and the GDT coverage of it. I also really like the werewolf version, although if there was blood on the bull’s horns, he probably was the culprit, although I suppose he could have gored the werewolf as well.


  6. 121 years ago tomorrow, September 18, 1892, is the anniversary of the death of James Merry. Gored by Patrick Nugent’s bull in the Curtis owned pasture in Dogtown. The link I posted is no more. I think he lived on Cleveland Street.

    So if you feel the presence of a ghost while tossing one back at Stone’s Pub tonight it may be James.


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