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Coroner's Inquests were usually held within the space of 48 hours following a death that appeared to be of a suspicious or unexplained nature. They were usually held in a local public-house, ale house, municipal building, or parish workhouse, but sometimes in the building where the death occurred. The Coroner usually came from a legal or medical background and more often than not, appointed for life by the respective County. The Coroner and a Jury of between 12 and 24 persons, usually men of substantial standing, were empanelled to examine the body, hear witnesses, and the Jury then to come to a Verdict as to Cause of Death. The account of the Inquest appearing in local newspapers, included the name of the deceased, where they died, and how they died. Sometimes, age, occupation, parish or address, and other relatives' names can be found. In later years when Hospitals appear, people can be dying away from their parish after having been admitted to that institution, and the Inquest is therefore conducted where the death occurred, rather than where the person was living.
[No's in brackets indicate the number of times that name occurs.]
Names Included: - Anstey; Archer; Ashford; Avery; Bale; Balsom; Bartlett(2); Baskerville; Bastin; Battershall; Beer(4); Belworthy; Bennetts; Birch; Blackmore; Blake; Blew; Bodley; Bolt; Bond; Bowden; Bragg; Braund; Bray; Brewer; Brice; Bright(2); Brimmacombe; Brock; Brooks; Browning(2); Bryant; Buckingham; Budd; Burgess; Burridge; Burt; Calling; Cann(2); Carnall(2); Champernowne; Channing; Chapple(2); Chase(2); Cheeseworth; Clapp; Clarridge; Clatworthy; Cobley; Cock; Codner; Coleman; Collins(2); Coleman; Colman; Cooksley; Cope; Cossins; Courtnay; Cox; Crook(2); Crossman; Daniel; Davey(2); Davis; Dawe; Dayment; Denner; Disney; Downey; Draper; Drewe(2); Dunn; Edwards(3); Elliot; Elliott(2); Ellis; Esworthy; Farquharson; Farrant; Finnimore; Fisher; Fleming; Floud; Flynn; Foot; French(2); Fursman; Furze; Gale; Gard; Gay; Gaydon; Gloyne; Godsmark; Gould; Grace; Gray; Greenslade(2); Gullaven; Hamlyn; Harnaman; Hart; Hartnoll; Haydon; Heal; Heard; Heath; Hellier; Henton; Hewitt; Hill(3); Hitchcock(2); Hobbs; Hockin; Hooper(3); Hookway; Houseman; Hudson; Hunt; Hurrell; Hutchings; Isaacs; Jarvis(2); Jones(2); Kelley; Kingdon; Knight; Knill; Knott; Knowles; Lake(2); Lancey; Landray; Langford; Lavis(2); Lawless; Lawrence; Lee; Ley; Lintern; Lock; Lodge; Longman; Lookis; Maddocks; Madge; Maitland; Marshall; Martin(3); Mason; Matthews; Mears; Millman; Mills; Millward; Milton(2); Mitchell; Mogridge; Moore; Moreton; Morgan(2); Morris; Morrish(2); Mortimore; Murphy; Mutter; Nicks; Nolan; Norman(2); Norrish; North; Orchard; Osborne; Palmer; Parminter; Parnell; Parsons; Passmore; Pates; Pavey; Payne(2); Pearce; Pearse; Phillips; Pigeon; Piper; Pitcairn; Plymsell; Polack; Powlesland; Pratt; Pulland; Puncher; Quint; Radford; Ratcliffe; Rattary; Records; Reeves; Rendles; Rice; Ridd; Ridgway; Roberts(2); Robertson; Robinson; Rookley; Rowe; Rowland; Rugg; Sale; Sanders; Saunders; Scot; Seldon; Selman; Seward; Sharland; Sheet; Shelstone; Silman; Small; Smith(2); Snell(2); Snodgrass; Snow; Southcott; Spicer; Sprague; Squires; Stephens; Stevens(2); Stone; Storer; Strong; Sutton; Tancock; Tapley; Tapp; Tarr; Taylor(4); Thomas; Thorne; Thurston; Tonkin; Totterdell; Trewin; Trout; Tucker(2); Turner(5); Vill; Vote; Voules; Walters; Waters; Watt; Waycott; Webber(2); Westacott; Whitcombe; Wickers; Widger; Wilkes; Williams(2); Willings; Wills(2); Windsor; Wollocott; Wotton; Yardley; Yolland; Young;
Wednesday 2 January 1861, Issue 4942 – Gale Document No. Y3200700376
EXETER – Sudden Death. – An Inquest was held before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, at the Bear Inn, South-street, on the body of a man named GEORGE CODNER, about thirty-two years of age. The deceased, who was a brother to the unfortunate young man who lost his life three years since from an injury received in the Cathedral-yard on the 5th Nov., was a moulder in the employ of Mr Kerslake, ironfounder. For a few days previous to his death he had been engaged as waiter at the Old Golden Lion Inn, Market-street. On Thursday last he was playing at snowballs with some young men, when he was seized with a sudden faintness. He was taken to his mother's residence in the College, where he expired in a very short time. He had been suffering from palpitation of the heart. The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased died from Natural Causes.
Wednesday 9 January 1861, Issue 4943 – Gale Document No. Y3200700427
TORQUAY – Boy Killed By The Fall Of A Rock. – On Thursday last a most promising youth of about 14 years of age, son of the REV. D. PITCAIRN, met with an untimely death at Torquay. It appears that the young gentleman was strolling on the beach, when suddenly a mass of rock, loosened, no doubt, by the action of the recent frosts, fell and crushed him at once. The men on the Coastguard station, who witnessed the accident, were immediately on the spot to render assistance, but life was extinct. The remains of the unfortunate youth were conveyed to the residence of his afflicted parents. On Saturday an Inquest was held and a verdict of "Accidental Death" as returned.
Wednesday 16 January 1861, Issue 4944 – Gale Document No. Y3200700443
EXETER – A Child Burnt To Death. – An Inquest was held at the Poltimore Arms, St Sidwell's, on Saturday afternoon, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a little boy, four years of age, named JOHN W. MORGAN. The deceased was the son of MR J. MORGAN, dairyman, of St Sidwell-street, and it appeared that on Thursday morning MRS MORGAN had brought him and a younger child downstairs for the purpose of dressing them. While temporarily absent from the room to fetch a key from upstairs she heard loud screams, and on rushing into the room found the deceased, who only had his night-dress on at the time, enveloped in flames. She wrapped her dress around him, and succeeded in extinguishing the fire, after which linseed oil was applied to the burns, which were very severe on the lower part of the body and the left arm. Mr Land, surgeon, was sent for, but his efforts to save life were unavailing – the poor little fellow, after suffering extreme agonies, expired on Friday evening. There appeared to be no doubt that the deceased had ventured too near the fire, and that his bedgown had thus become ignited. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
FATAL ACCIDENT – An accident, which terminated fatally, occurred to an elderly man named ROBERT HAYDON. On Saturday afternoon last, HAYDON, who was sixty years of age, was in the employ of Mr James Huggins, of Endacott Farm, Shobrook. On Saturday morning he was employed with a waggon and two horses to fetch some ashes from Exeter. A young man, named Channing, accompanied him with a second waggon. On the homeward journey HAYDON passed Channing on Cowley Bridge; and drove on in front of him. At that time he was standing on the shafts of the waggon and had the reins in his hands. When near Cowley House, Channing heard HAYDON calling to the horses to stop, and on looking in front o f him he saw the former lying on the road and one of the wheels run over his breast. Channing went up and in answer to his enquiries as to how the accident happened he said that he had hitched his foot in the shaft and fallen down. He was taken to the Devon and Exeter Hospital the same afternoon; when on examination by Mr C. Rendle, the house surgeon, it was found that four ribs of the right side were fractured, and that the right arm had been broken. The poor man lingered until about five o'clock the next morning, when he expired. An Inquest was held on the body on Monday, at the Blue Boar Inn, before the City Coroner, when a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
DEATH FROM SUFFOCATION – A child, named ANNE MADDOCKS, the daughter of a labourer living in St Sidwells, aged about two months, was found dead in bed on Wednesday morning last. Two hours before she was in good health. Mr J. S. Perkins, surgeon, who was called in to see the deceased, gave it as his opinion that the child died from suffocation, produced by inflammation. A Coroner's Inquest was held on the body on the same day at the Red Lion Inn, when the Jury returned a verdict in accordance with the medical testimony.
Wednesday 30 January 1861, Issue 4946 – Gale Document No. Y3200700530
EXMOUTH – An Inquest was held at Baker's Albion Inn, on Tuesday last week, on the body of ELIZA MORRISH, aged four years, the daughter of a carpenter, residing in George-street, who came by her death under the following circumstances: On Monday week previously, MRS MORRISH, the mother of the deceased, was called from her house on business; no person else being then in the house, she locked the door, but left the key in it. A few minutes afterwards the deceased, who had been playing in the street, returned with an elder brother, and both entered the house. They approached the fire carrying with them some shavings, which the boy threw under the gate, and, on their igniting, the flames somehow caught the girl's pinafore. The brother rendered all the assistance in his power, but in vain; nor was it until she had been severely burnt about the face and body that the flames were extinguished by some neighbours, who had heard her agonizing cries. The poor child lingered until the following Thursday, when she expired. The Jury returned a verdict in accordance with the evidence.
Wednesday 30 January 1861, Issue 4946 – Gale Document No. Y3200700529
BARNSTAPLE – Death From Burning. – ALICE ANN THORNE, aged six years, whose parents reside in Salem-place, caught her clothes on fire on Tuesday evening week. She died from the effects on the following day. Mr Incledon Bencraft held an Inquest upon the body on Thursday, and the Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 6 February 1861, Issue 4947 – Gale Document No. Y3200700563
LANGTREE – Death Of A Child From Burning. – On Thursday last Mr J. H. Toller, Deputy-Coroner, held an Inquest at Langtree upon the body of SUSANNA MARTIN, thirteen months old, the daughter of a labourer. On the Tuesday preceding the deceased was left sitting on a little chair by the fire, and during her mother's temporary absence a burning stick flew out upon the child and ignited its clothes. The little sufferer died the next day. Verdict – "Accidentally Burnt to Death."
Wednesday 13 February 1861, Issue 4948 – Gale Document No. Y3200700609
BARNSTAPLE – Last week the child of WILLIAM LOCK, a man in the employ of Mr Thomas May, High-street, was so severely scalded that it died on Friday morning. It was only eleven months old. An Inquest was held by Mr Bremridge: Verdict, "Accidental Death."
OTTERY ST. MARY – Inquest. – On Saturday an Inquest was held at Ottery St. Mary, before Mr Spencer Cox, Coroner, on the body of a poor old woman, named MARY GOULD, who was found dead on the morning of the 5th instant. Dr Whitby made a post mortem examination of the body, and gave it as his opinion that the deceased died from a fit of apoplexy, and the Jury returned a verdict accordingly. Deceased, an inmate of one of the alms-houses, was upwards of seventy-five years of age.
Wednesday 20 February 1861, Issue 4949 – Gale Document No. Y3200700631
EXETER – Sudden Death. – The City Coroner (H. W. Hooper, Esq.,) held an Inquest at the Anchor Inn, Exe Island, on Friday evening last, on the body of HENRY THURSTON, who died suddenly on the morning of that day. The deceased was an apprentice to Mr Landry, shoemaker, of the Island, and was about nineteen years of age. On Friday morning he was found dead in his bed, death, it appearing, having resulted from a fit, to which he had previously been much subject. A verdict in accordance was consequently returned by the Jury. The deceased's father also expired suddenly in a fit.
Wednesday 20 February 1861, Issue 4949 – Gale Document No. Y3200700649
CHITTLEHAMPTON – On Friday last Mr J. H. Toller, Deputy Coroner, held an Inquest upon the body of ANN CROSSMAN, aged 72, wife of WILLIAM CROSSMAN. On the morning of the 22nd of November last eh deceased got out of bed, fell, and broke her right leg. She was attended by Mr Richard Ley, surgeon, of Southmolton, who attributed the breaking of the bone to gangrene, and death to the effects of the broked leg. Verdict accordingly
MOLLAND – Boiler Explosion. – On Monday last Mr Bremridge held an Inquest upon the bodies of JOHN BENNETTS, aged 16, and ELIZA PEARCE, aged 15. BENNETTS and PEARCE were employed at the Molland Mine. On the preceding Friday morning they went into the boiler-house, but had not long been there ere the boiler exploded. They were both shockingly scalded. Mr F. Gardner, surgeon, of Southmolton, was soon in attendance; but PEARCE died before the medical gentleman reached the scene of the calamity. BENNETTS survived fifteen hours. The engineer (John Dunn) stated that the pressure on the boiler at the time of the explosion was about fifty or sixty pounds; but he said he had worked the engine at between sixty and seventy pounds pressure. He believed the boiler to be in a perfect working condition. The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased were "Accidentally Killed by the Bursting of a Steam Engine."
Wednesday 27 February 1861, Issue 4950 – Gale Document No. Y3200700668
EXETER – Fatal Accident. – On Saturday last WILLIAM STONE, a labourer, died in the Devon and Exeter Hospital from injuries received whilst engaged in thrashing at Broadclist on the 15th inst. An Inquest was held on Monday, at the Blue Boar Inn, Magdalen-street, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, when a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
DEATH OF AN INFANT FROM EATING A COUGH LOZENGE. – On Monday H. W. Hooper, Esq., the City Coroner, opened an Inquest, at the Greyhound Inn, Paris-street, on the body of WM. FREDERICK RIDD, aged seven weeks, the father of whom is a clerk at the Devon Constabulary office. On Thursday last, the deceased was observed to have a slight cold, accompanied with a cough, which continued up to Saturday, when a lozenge, purchased at the shop of Mr Palk, chemist and druggist, of Sidwell-street, was given to the child by its mother, the remainder of which was produced. After partaking of a portion of the lozenge, deceased was laid down on the sofa, apparently asleep, and shortly after an alteration was observed in him much for the worse, and before the arrival of Mr Hunt, surgeon, who was sent for, the child was dead. On Mr Palk being sent for at the Inquest, he said he could give no idea of the component parts of the lozenge in question, as they were not manufactured by him, although marked with his name, but by Mr Budge, of Crediton. Mr Hunt said he was unable to account for the child's death, unless it was in some way connected with the lozenge which he had eaten. In order that the medical gentleman might arrive at a correct conclusion as to the cause of death, the Inquiry was adjourned until Tuesday evening, when Mr Budge attended, and stated that the lozenges, of which he manufactured great quantities, contained a quarter of a grain of ipececuanha, one-twentyfourth of morphia; and one-twentyfourth of tartar emetic: the basis of the lozenge was liquorice and gum. It was never contemplated that the lozenge would be given to an infant, for, with the instructions issued, two per diem was the specified quantity for a child five years of age. After the evidence of Mr Budge, Mr Hunt said he had not the least doubt that the morphia in the lozenge was the cause of the child's death, by stopping the vitality of the organs. The Coroner, in summing up, said that if a lozenge contained a quantity of morphia or opium, or other ingredients, sufficient to destroy the life of an infant, of course the same component parts, in greater quantities, would be injurious to adults; and he considered that the public safety demanded that these lozenges should not be sold or retailed by chemists without a caution being given as to their use, and the danger to life attending a misuse or over-dose of them. The same rule appeared to him to apply to the sale of lozenges containing morphia or opium as it did to the sale of morphia or opium itself. The Jury concurred in the views of the Coroner, and believing that the mother had given the child the lozenge unwittingly, they returned a verdict accordingly, appending to it a recommendation that such lozenges should not be given to children under four years of age.
Wednesday 6 March 1861, Issue 4951 – Gale Document No. Y3200700707
HIGHBICKINGTON – An Inquest was held at the above place on the 28th ult., by R. Bremridge, Esq. Coroner, on the body of MARY WEBBER, aged seventy-two. On the morning of the 26th ult., her husband went to his daily labour, leaving her in her usual health, and on his return in the evening he found her very ill, and before medical assistance could be procured she expired. From the evidence of Mr Barr, surgeon, it appears that deceased had had a stroke of paralysis, from which death had resulted. Verdict, "Died from Natural Causes."
Wednesday 13 March 1861, Issue 4952 – Gale Document No. Y3200700718
EXETER – Death From Burning. – An Inquest was held on Friday last, at the Valiant Soldier Inn, before H. D. Barton, Esq., Deputy Coroner, on the body of CATHERINE TUCKER, aged fifty-six years. Deceased resided with her husband in Coombe-street: she was, however, subject to violent fits. On the 19th February last, being seized with one, she fell into the fire, and being alone was burnt about the face very severely. Deceased was removed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where she lingered until Friday morning. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 20 March 1861, Issue 4953 – Gale Document No. Y3200700764
ATTEMPTED SUICIDE. – MRS MARY FLEMING of Hardaway Head, who has been bedridden since September, made an attempt on her own life, on Wednesday, by cutting her throat with a razor. In answer to a question put to her by a neighbour, MRS FLEMING said, "I don't know how I came to do it." The wound itself was not sufficient to cause death, though the poor old lady died on Saturday night. Mr Incledon Bencraft held an Inquest on Monday at the Mason's Arms Inn upon the body; and from the medical evidence then adduced – evidence to the effect that death was hastened by the excitement and irritation caused by the wound – the Jury returned a verdict of "Temporary Insanity."
LYNTON – Sudden Death. – On Tuesday week, Mr J. H. Toller, Deputy Coroner, held an Inquest at the Lyndale Hotel, Lynton, on the body of ELIAS HOBBS, aged 53. The deceased was a watch and clock maker of Bampton, and he seems to have been in the habit of visiting Lynton twice a year in pursuance of his business, lodging generally at the house of Mr Groves. On the present occasion he had been at Lynton five days; and on the Sunday night he went to bed in apparently good health. Between five and six the next morning the deceased went down stairs to drink; but soon after his return to his bedroom he was heard moaning, and before assistance could be procured he died. Mr John Clarke, surgeon, made a post-mortem examination of the body, and from the evidence of that gentleman the Jury returned a verdict that death was caused by an effusion of blood on the brain.
Wednesday 3 April 1861, Issue 4954 – Gale Document No. Y3200700828
NEWTON ABBOT. – An Inquest was opened at Teignmouth, on Saturday, by Mr Cockey, on the body of MR SAMUEL POLACK, formerly a tailor and draper, a Jew, living at 45, Crompton-crescent, London, who met with his death on the previous Thursday evening, at the Newton Abbot station, by falling beneath the wheels of the carriages of a train in motion. After the identification of the body by Mr Frederick Symons, a wine and spirit merchant, in London, the enquiry was adjourned till Monday.
ASHBURTON – An Inquest was held on Saturday by Mr W. A. Cockey, on the body of JOHN HAMLYN, a poor man who was killed whilst engaged in breaking a colt for his master, Mr Rowell, of Ilsington. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 24 April 1861, Issue 4957 – Gale Document No. Y3200700922
EXETER – Sudden Death. – On Friday evening an Inquest was held at the King's Arms Inn, West-street, by Mr H. W. Hooper, City Coroner, on the body of MR JOHN MORETON, cabinet-maker, aged thirty-seven. The evidence shewed that deceased, who resided at the King's Arms Inn, went and lay down on his bed in the afternoon of the previous day, slept for some hours, and was at last awoke by his wife who had become uneasy about him; Mr Pates, the chemist, was sent for, who, however, only arrived to see the poor man die. Mr Hawkins, the regular medical attendant of the deceased, saw the body after death, and explained to the Jury that the immediate cause of death was a rupture of one of the vessels of the heart – a natural death, and a verdict accordingly was returned.
Wednesday 8 May 1861, Issue 4959 – Gale Document No. Y3200700999
TORRINGTON – Suicide. – An Inquest was taken by H. A. Vallack, Esq., County Coroner, on Friday last, at Highampton, on the body of WILLIAM BRIGHT, aged seventy-seven; who, on the previous Wednesday, hanged himself in a linhay immediately opposite his house and close to the highway. The deceased had been suffering from chronic bronchitis, and on the evidence of Mr Owen, surgeon, it appeared that the poor old man's brain was in a weakened state. Verdict – "Temporary Insanity."
Wednesday 15 May 1861, Issue 4960 – Gale Document No. Y3200701009
EXETER – Suicide. – On Thursday morning a temporary lodger at the Plume of Feathers Inn, named JOSEPH WILLINGS, aged sixty, committed suicide by hanging himself to his bed-post. The poor fellow had been for some time out of work, and had got into a desponding state of mind. An Inquest was held in the afternoon, before the City Coroner (Mr H. W. Hooper), when a verdict of "Temporary Insanity" was returned.
Wednesday 5 June 1861, Issue 4963 – Gale Document No. Y3200701084
Death From Excessive Drinking. – WILLIAM MILLWARD, aged seventy-one, living as hind with Mrs Buckingham, of Landkey, was found dead in bed on Monday morning. MILLWARD was a man of most intemperate habits. At the Inquest held on Tuesday, by Mr Toller, Mr Jackman, surgeon, of Swimbridge, stated that the deceased died from congestion of the brain, produced by excessive drinking, and the Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 19 June 1861, Issue 4965 – Gale Document No. Y3200701165
ILFRACOMBE – Fatal Accident. – PHILIP PUNCHER, foreman to Mr Cooke, shipbuilder, met with an accident on Monday week which proved fatal on Friday. Leaning against a temporary rail, placed round a vessel now building, it gave way and the deceased was precipitated to the ground, falling upon two large stones: his head was frightfully cut and his neck and spine were injured. The Inquest held on Saturday by Mr Bremridge resulted in a verdict of "Accidental Death."
OTTERY ST. MARY – Accident. – An Inquest was held on Friday last, at Buncome Farm, before Spencer M. Cox, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a lad named HENRY SHEET, who was killed on the previous day by a kick from one of the horses on the farm. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
SUDDEN DEATH OF A BOY – JOHN BALE, aged ten, died suddenly on Monday afternoon week, whilst attending a school treat at Landcross. At the Inquest (held by Mr Bremridge, on Wednesday) Mr J. C. Baker, surgeon, gave it as his opinion that the deceased died from congenital disease of the heart, accelerated by running; and a verdict to that effect was returned.
Wednesday 26 June 1861, Issue 4966 – Gale Document No. Y3200701191
EXETER - DEATHS BY DROWNING – An Inquest was held at the Port Royal Inn, St. Leonard's, on Monday, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., Coroner for the district, on the bodies of two youths, named YOUNG and TARR, who were drowned in the river, near Trew's Weir Mills, on the previous day. About two o'clock on Sunday afternoon GEORGE YOUNG and his brother WILLIAM, JOHN TARR, and three others, went to bathe at the place above-named. JOHN TARR, who is about fourteen years of age, crossed the river, and when within a short distance of the opposite bank towards St. Thomas, he was seen to sink. GEORGE YOUNG, who is a year older, went to his assistance; when the too frequent scene was enacted – the drowning boy seized hold of YOUNG, and they both went down together. An alarm was given; and Mr Edwards, landlord of the Port Royal, accompanied by Mr Blackburn, who, after dragging the river for about an hour, succeeded in recovering the bodies. Life was quite extinct. Some of the boys who were bathing were very young – some not more than ten or twelve years of age, and unable to swim; and it was a fact regretted by the Coroner and the Jury that children of that age should be allowed to bathe in a part of the river which was so dangerous as the opposite banks of the Exe were at this place. A verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned. Both of the deceased were shoemaker's apprentices; YOUNG contributing in a great measure to the support of his mother and her other five children, who reside on Stepcote-hill, in this city. TARR'S father is a marine store dealer.
Mr Bremridge held an Inquest at Hartland, on Monday, upon the body of RICHARD BEER, eighteen months old, son of a labourer. The mother seems to have left a pan of hot milk upon the floor, and during her temporary absence the deceased fell into the milk and was scald so severely as to cause death. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 10 July 1861, Issue 4968 – Gale Document No. Y3200701270
An Inquest was held at Appledore, on Thursday, by Richard Bremridge, Esq., on the body of a little boy, five years of age, named RICHARD BROOKS, found floating in the water on the day preceding. He had been missed by his parents about one hour, and the body appeared to have been about that time in the water. Verdict, "Found Drowned."
TEIGNMOUTH – Fatal Boat Accident. – An Inquest was held on Thursday, at the Foresters' Arms Inn, by F. B. Cuming, Esq., Deputy Coroner, on the body of ELIZA ISAACS, thirty three years of age, who was accidentally drowned, through the upsetting of a boat in the channel, near a place called Labrador, on the previous Tuesday afternoon. From the evidence it seems that the deceased was a married woman, her husband being at present on his way home from Australia, and kept the Compass Inn, at West Teignmouth. On Tuesday afternoon MRS ISAACS, her son SAMUEL WILLIAM CURTIS, about thirteen or fourteen years of age, born to a former husband, Mrs Taylor her sister, and Mrs Harley, engaged a boat of Mr Perriman and rowed round the Ness to Labrador. The deceased and Mrs Harley then got on the beach, and having undressed themselves began to bathe. Some boys near seeing them, threw stones at them, and they consequently took up their clothes and returned to the boat, and the son of the deceased rowed them about twenty land yards into the channel. During this time several stones were thrown into the boat, but none struck any of the parties. Being out of the reach of the boys they began to dress, when Mrs Harley discovered her foot covered with blood, and got on the side of the boat for the purpose of washing it, whereupon the boat upset, throwing all the occupants into the water. They, however, succeeded in catching hold of the boat, and after some severe struggling got upon it – the three females being on the stern and the boy on the bow. So great was the weight, however, at the rear part of the boat that it sank, and they were again immersed. At this moment the deceased was heard to call, "Sam, " her son, but he was unable to go to her assistance. A waterman, named William Onion, of Shaldon, seeing the accident, immediately went to their relief, and pulled them into the boat in a very exhausted state. The deceased, who was the last he came to, was floating with her back upwards and her head under the water. She was not observed to breathe after she was taken into the boat, but a quantity of froth oozed from her mouth and nostrils. The deceased was afterwards taken to Major Browne's, at Shaldon, and Mr Brooks, surgeon, called in, and he endeavoured to restore animation, but in vain. Mr Brooks said that from the appearance of the deceased he was of opinion she was seized with apoplexy whilst in the water. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidentally Drowned."
Wednesday 10 July 1861, Issue 4968 – Gale Document No. Y3200701259
CULLOMPTON – Melancholy and Fatal Occurrence. - An Inquest was held at the London Inn, yesterday (Tuesday) before R. R. Crosse, Esq., on the body of JAMES DISNEY, of Daisyland Farm, in the parish of Broadhembury, aged forty-five. It appears that between three and four o'clock on the previous Monday afternoon the deceased was returning from haymaking between Cullompton and Willand with a waggon and two horses. The deceased and his nephew, JOHN DISNEY, aged about eighteen, were riding on the fore part of the waggon, which was partially laden with hay, and containing SARAH DISNEY, sister-in-law of deceased, and Charles Northam, his servant. As soon as they were outside the field gate the shaft horse, from some unaccountable means, began to kick and both started off at a rapid pace. The unfortunate deceased sprang to the shaft horse for the purpose of stopping it, but was unsuccessful., and clung in a perilous position to the harness for abut thirty yards, when he was unable t retain his hold, which he relinquished, fell and both wheels passed over his body, and the poor man was so seriously injured that he died within three hours afterwards. The nephew seeing the efforts of his uncle were unavailing and the latter's critical position, also jumped to the shaft horse on the other side, but in doing so fell, both wheels passing over his leg, which was broken and very much bruised. The unfortunate lad was immediately conveyed to the hospital; and at the Inquest on the deceased a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned. Mr A Steadman, surgeon, was quickly in attendance, and rendered valuable aid to the suffering unfortunates.
Wednesday 24 July 1861, Issue 4970 – Gale Document No. Y3200701330
FATAL ACCIDENT – About three weeks since a woman, named JANE TURNER, twenty-eight years of age, the wife of a labourer, living at Rockbeare, was suddenly seized with a fit, and received fatal injuries from falling into the fire while suffering from it. She was taken to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where it was found necessary to amputate one arm, it being so frightfully burnt. The efforts to save the life of the poor sufferer were, however, unavailing: she was attacked with bronchitis and ulceration of the intestines, which terminated her life at half-past ten o'clock on Friday night. On Monday an Inquest was held at the Blue Boar Inn, before the City Coroner, H. W. Hooper, Esq., when a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned by the Jury.
Wednesday 31 July 1861, Issue 4871 – Gale Document No. Y3200701360
A LADY POISONED AT BIDEFORD - On Monday great excitement was occasioned here by a report that a lady, who had been on a visit at Mr Stephen Wilcocks, had by some means or other been poisoned. The rumour turned out to be true; and the following particulars may be relied on as correct. The lady, who had been governess in the family of Lord Clinton, at Huish, for upwards of twenty years, came here to spend a few days with Mrs Wilcocks. Some part of their early life had been spent at school together. The deceased lady, FRANCIS ANN ROWLAND, was forty-one years of age, had complained of diarrhoea, but attributed her illness to change of air. Mrs Wilcocks recommended a prescription which was made up of tincture of rhubarb and laudanum, and knowing that Mr Thomas Griffiths, chemist, of this place was careful and safe, she went to his shop and asked for three pennyworth of tincture of rhubarb and three drops of laudanum, stating at the time that it was a prescription given her by one nurse Williams. On taking the medicine home, MISS ROWLAND was engaged at her needle, but told Mrs Wilcocks that she felt rather poorly and would go up stairs and lie on the bed. When Mrs Wilcocks subsequently went up, deceased said she had been sick. Mrs Wilcocks poured out the medicine in a wine glass, and MISS ROWLAND immediately drank it, remarking that it was nauseous. Mrs Wilcocks went down to dinner about one o'clock, and about two went upstairs again; the deceased said "I have not been asleep," she preferred lying still a little longer, and said smilingly "I don't know how people feel when they are tipsy, but I feel very comfortable." Mrs Wilcocks then left her, thinking it for the best. About three, or half-past Mrs Wilcocks went up stairs again, and when the blanket was removed she observed that MISS ROWLAND breathed slowly. Her hands were clenched, face swollen, and eyes shut. Mr Wilcocks, on being apprised of her condition, went for Dr Jones, but MISS ROWLAND died. Dr Jones, at an Inquest held yesterday at the New Inn, before Thomas L. Pridham, Esq., Coroner, stated that the deceased died from a narcotic poison; but the Jury deeming further medical testimony necessary, together with a post mortem examination of the body, adjourned their Inquiry at five until eight o'clock, when it would be resumed. Mr Incledon Bencraft, solicitor, is professionally engaged to watch the case for Mr Thomas Griffiths.
Wednesday 14 August 1861, Issue 4973 – Gale Document No. Y3200701440
EXETER – Suicide In The County Prison. – A distressing suicide was committed in the County Prison last week, by a young woman, twenty-five years of age, named FANNY ANN BRIMMACOMBE, under sentence of three years' penal servitude for a robbery committed at Torrington. Since her committal the prisoner had given birth to a child, which died a fortnight or so since, and the loss of which greatly depressed her mind. Under this unhappy depression, aggravated in no slight degree by bodily sufferings consequent on her confinement, she committed suicide in her cell by hanging herself by means of some rags with which she was supplied for surgical purposes, and a staylace, which she fastened to the gas-pipe in the cell. An Inquest has been held by R. R. Crosse, Esq., the Coroner for the division, and a verdict of "Temporary Insanity" returned, in accordance with the evidence.
ACCIDENT. – An Inquest was held on Thursday at the Valiant Soldier Inn, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., City Coroner, on the body of HENRY HEARD, a boy four years old. It appeared by the evidence adduced at this Enquiry that the father of the deceased child, a carpenter, residing at Ide, was at work in the garden on the 11th of May last, digging the ground with a "two-bill." The child was standing outside the rails of the garden, and pushed his head through the rails, and the father accidentally struck him on the top of the head. The child was removed to the Devon and Exeter hospital, where he lingered until Wednesday, when he died. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 21 August 1861, Issue 4974 – Gale Document No. Y3200701478
EXETER – Boy Drowned. – An Inquest was held on Thursday, at the Royal George Inn, Quay-lane, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a boy six years of age, named GEORGE BASTIN, son of a labourer, living in Quay-lane. On the previous Monday morning the child was sent to school as usual, but instead of going there it appeared that he went to the Quay to play with some other boys. At three o'clock that afternoon he was seen playing on the Quay by his uncle, who threatened to beat him if he did not immediately go home. Nothing more could be afterwards ascertained of his whereabouts, and not returning home in the evening his parents became alarmed, and went on the Quay in search of him; but nothing could be heard of him till Wednesday, when he was seen floating in the Quay. No evidence was adduced to shew how the little fellow got drowned, and the Jury returned an Open Verdict.
Wednesday 4 September 1861, Issue 4976 – Gale Document No. Y3200701545
EXETER – Child Drowned. – On Saturday Mr H. D. Barton, the Deputy Coroner, held an Inquest at the Cattle Market Inn, on the body of a child, named THOMAS DAVEY, aged seventeen months. The deceased was the son of a fireman, in the employ of Mr Parkin, ironfounder. On Friday evening the child was placed in the charge of an elder brother by the mother. He appears to have taken the deceased into a garden in the Bonhay, where he left him for a short time and went to his home. On returning, a few minutes subsequently, the child was missing. A search was immediately instituted, and the body eventually found in the stream which runs through the Bonhay. It is supposed that the deceased wandered to the bank of the stream and fell in. Verdict – "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 4 September 1861, Issue 4976 – Gale Document No. Y3200701546
BARNSTAPLE – Death By Drowning. – JAMES JARVIS, a tailor, of Newport, aged thirty, was accidentally drowned on Monday evening whilst bathing in the river Taw, at a place called Black Barn. There were other persons bathing near at the time: they saw him go into the water and swim outwards, but soon after turning to swim ashore he suddenly sank: he had been drinking: was described by a witness at the Inquest as being "elevated, but capable of taking care of himself." The body was recovered some three hours afterwards by means of a fishing net. Mr Incledon Bencraft held an Inquest upon the body on Tuesday, when a verdict in accordance with the foregoing facts was returned.
Wednesday 4 September 1861, Issue 4976 – Gale Document No. Y3200701560
Mr J. H. Toller held an Inquest at Braunton on Friday, upon the body of WILLIAM MORRIS, aged sixteen. On the preceding day the deceased seems to have gone to bathe in the river Taw, at a place called Pill's Mouth, and some few hours afterwards his body was seen near Blackstone Rock by Francis Drake, a fisherman. Verdict – "Accidentally Drowned."
SOUTHMOLTON – Fatal Accident. – MR WILLIAM WESTACOTT, of Coombeshead Farm, was drowned in the pond in front f his house on Wednesday evening last. Deceased had been to Southmolton fair, and on returning about ten o'clock in the evening, it is supposed, rode his horse to water, where by some means he was thrown off. Deceased was heard to call for assistance, and it was rendered as speedily as possible, but too late unhappily. Mr Spicer, of Northmolton, was sent for and pronounced life extinct. An Inquest, held by Mr J. H. Toller, resulted in a verdict of "Accidentally Drowned."
Wednesday 11 September 1861, Issue 4977 – Gale Document No. Y3200701568
EXETER – On Tuesday an Inquest was held at the Anchor Inn, Paul-street, before Mr H. W. Hooper, Coroner, on JANE, the wife of WM. CARNALL, a porter in Mr Rowe's carpet warehouse, aged seventy years. Deceased was out on Monday evening and returned at half-past seven. About that time a man, named William Trott, living next door, heard a noise in CARNALL'S house, and on going to see what was the cause found deceased lying on her back on the floor speechless. Several neighbours were called to her assistance, she was put to bed, and expired about five o'clock on Tuesday morning. Mr B. J. Webb viewed the body, and stated his opinion that the cause of her death was "Serous Apoplexy." Verdict accordingly.
SUPPOSED SUICIDE AT KENTON. – On Wednesday morning a dairymaid, named LOUISA QUINT, in the service of General Studd, of Oxton House, near Kenton, suddenly disappeared from the house. A search was instituted in the afternoon, as she still remained absent, and her body was ultimately found in a pond, on the grounds. Life was extinct. The deceased, who was about twenty-five years of age, bore a good character, and was much esteemed by her fellow-servants. No motive could be assigned for the act. She had been in General Studd's service about six months, and had never appeared in a desponding state. Mr H. W. Hooper held an Inquest on the body on Friday, but no evidence to elucidate the mystery was forthcoming, and the Jury returned a verdict of "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 11 September 1861, Issue 4977 – Gale Document No. Y3200701579
BRIXHAM – Mr F. B. Cuming, Deputy Coroner, held an Inquest on Monday, at the Bolton Hotel, on the body of a sailor, called HENRY GEORGE GAY, belonging to the brig Providential, who fell from the topmast on Saturday morning, receiving such injuries as to cause almost instantaneous death. It is supposed that the deceased must have lost his hold either from vertigo or carelessness. A verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
TORQUAY – A Child Burnt To Death. – An Inquest was held on Saturday, at the Torbay Inn, Torquay, before Mr F. B. Cuming, Deputy Coroner, on the body of EMILY ARCHER, a girl between ten and eleven years of age, lodging with Mr H. Goss, at Torr, who died on the previous Wednesday, from the shock caused to the system, the result of a severe burning sustained by her on the Tuesday previous. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died from Shock to the System, caused by Burning." The Coroner and Jury experienced some opposition on the part of Mr Goss to their viewing the body, which had been screwed down, and the Coroner was obliged to threaten the exercise of his authority before they were allowed to examine it.
BUDLEIGH SALTERTON – Suicide. – A distressing suicide was committed at this pretty little watering place on Thursday, by a gentleman named GRACE, living at Ashbrook Cottage. The deceased had been for many years a resident at Budleigh, was a quiet and amiable person, and generally respected. On the morning of Thursday, as usual, he retired to a loft where it is said he generally passed the morning in reading, and at dinner-time a relation, who went to call him, found him suspended by a rope in the stable, quite dead. An Inquest has been held, and a verdict of "Temporary Insanity" returned.
Wednesday 18 September 1861, Issue 4978 – Gale Document No. Y3200701597
EXETER – Sudden Death,. - Mr H. W. Hooper, the City Coroner, held an Inquest on Friday, at the Blue Boar Inn, Magdalen-street, on the body of EDWARD REEVES, of Pavilion-place, aged seventy-four. About five o'clock on Friday morning the deceased left his bed and looked out at the window, saying he heard a dog barking in the night He returned to his bed, and in a few minutes slept very heavily As he snored very hard his wife moved his head, when he instantly expired. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died by the Visitation of God."
FATAL RAILWAY ACCIDENT. – On Monday an Inquest was held at the Royal Oak Inn, Okehampton-street, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., the Coroner for the district, on the body of a man, named WM. GREENSLADE, who was killed on the South Devon line, on the previous Saturday afternoon. The deceased was a dairyman, residing in St George's-lane, in this city, and was about fifty years of age. He rented some fields near the South Devon line. On Saturday afternoon the deceased left his home to go to his fields, and was seen by Mr Charles Tuckett, the landlord of the Royal Oak, about five o'clock, in Okehampton-street. He bought some "pigs-wash" of him, and the deceased promised him some more on the following Monday. He had known him for seven years, and he was a very sober man, and never in a desponding state. The up-express train was due at the St David's station at 5.20 that afternoon. Mr A. Tucker, the landlord of the Ship Inn, St Martin-street, Exeter, who was a passenger in it, appears to be the next person who saw MR GREENSLADE alive. Mr Tucker travelled in the guard's van, and as the train was going very slowly between the St Thomas and St David's stations, he looked out of the train and saw a man standing on the down line. The stop-signal belonging to the St David's station was on, and the train could not go into the yard. The deceased was near the centre rails when Mr Tucker saw him, and he walked up the line a few feet: when the train was about twenty feet in rear the poor man attempted to cross in front of the engine. He failed in doing this, and was knocked down and killed on the spot. The train stopped within 200 yards, and the guard and driver went back. The deceased was lying in the middle of the up line. He breathed a few times after the guard came to him; but almost immediately expired. No wheels had passed over any portion of his body, but there were wounds on the temple and the back of the head. The engine driver, John Smith, gave evidence at the Inquest, and corroborated Mr Tucker's statement. When he saw the man he applied the breaks; the whistles were sounded and the engine reversed. It is supposed that the unfortunate deceased got on the line to see some cattle in another of his fields, and that the sudden appearance of the train and hearing the alarm-whistle, so confused him that he remained on that part where he was first seen, no accident would have happened. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death". The deceased leaves a widow and son to mourn his loss.
Wednesday 25 September 1861, Issue 4979 – Gale Document No. Y3200701625
TIVERTON – Fatal Accident. – On Thursday last, returning from a sale at Beer Down Farm, Calverleigh, in company with Mr Smith, farmer, of Bickleigh, and some others, MR H. SNOW, of Chapel Hayes Farm, Bradninch, was thrown from his horse, and sustained such severe injury as to cause death within a few hours. At the Inquest on Friday, a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
Wednesday 2 October 1861, Issue 4980 – Gale Document No. Y3200701668
TORRINGTON – FANNY BRIGHT, wife of ABRAHAM BRIGHT, of St. Giles in the Wood, hung herself in one of the upstair rooms on Monday evening week. She was discovered before life was extinct, but she died the next day. Mr J. Toller, Deputy Coroner, held an Inquest upon the body on Wednesday, when Mr J. C. Hole, surgeon, of Torrington, gave it as his opinion that she died from asphyxia, occasioned by suspension by the neck. The deceased was sixty-one years old. It was proved to the Jury that the deceased had been in a desponding state for some time, and they found a verdict to the effect that the rash act was done whilst labouring from Temporary insanity.
SOUTHMOLTON – Suicide. – A distressing case of suicide by drowning was investigated on Friday, at the Townhall, by Mr Jas. Flatman, the Borough Coroner. The subject of the Inquest was JOHN WEBBER, Maltster, of this town, who was found drowned in the river Mole, on the morning of that day, by William Chapple, one of the borough constables. The evidence shewed that the deceased lost his wife about nine months since, and had been in a very distressed state of mind ever since, frequently complaining of his head. The Jury returned an open verdict of "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 2 October 1861, Issue 4980 – Gale Document No. Y3200701672
TEIGNMOUTH – A fatal accident occurred on board the Superb, on Friday. A shipwright's assistant named JAMES BOND, twenty years of age, son of a fisherman, and in the employ of Mr Mansfield, shipbuilder, of this town, whilst employed on board the vessel with George Lee and Thomas Tucker, happened accidentally to step backwards to avoid a blow from a piece of ropeyarn which he seems to have thought was about to be aimed at him by one of his fellow workmen, and fell down the hatchway, a distance of fifteen feet, receiving injuries, from the effects of which he died a few hours afterwards in the infirmary. An Inquest was held on Saturday by Mr F. B. Cumming, the Deputy Coroner, and a verdict of "Accidental Death" returned. The deceased being a member of the Teignmouth Artillery was interred with military honours.
Wednesday 9 October 1861, Issue 4981 – Gale Document No. Y3200701719
KINGSBRIDGE – A Wanderer. – About a fortnight or three weeks since an old man, giving the name of SILAS WATERS, was found by Sergeant P. Rousham, C.P., wandering in the street. He was unable to give any account of himself, and was, therefore, placed in the Union-house, from which he made his escape last week, and wandered down to the sea coast, stopping finally at Hope, where he was found on Wednesday morning by Samuel Whittingham, son of one of the coast-guardsmen, sitting between the rocks, and quite dead. It is thought he must have seated himself where found during the previous night, and, on the rising of the tide, he was overtaken and drowned; the eaves had, it seems, knocked him about and caused several bruises about the head. The body was removed to the coast-guard boat-house, and on Friday last an Inquest was held at the Hope and Anchor Inn, before F. B. Cuming, Esq., when a verdict was given of "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 30 October 1861, Issue 4984 – Gale Document No. Y3200701825
EXETER – An Inquest was held on Saturday, before Mr H. W. Hooper, City Coroner, at the Wellington Inn, on the body of MARY WAYCOTT, a widow, aged seventy years. The deceased lived in King-street, and on noticing that the shutters of her house were not taken down at the usual hour, some persons lodging in the house, suspecting something wrong, looked in at her bedroom window, and there discovered the deceased lying across the bed, and on forcing open her door they found that life was extinct. Mr A. J. Cumming, surgeon, was of opinion that death resulted from disease of the heart, and the Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 13 November 1861, Issue 4986 – Gale Document No. Y3200701894
EXETER – Mr H. W. Hooper, City Coroner, yesterday morning held an Inquest at the Workhouse, on the body of ELIZABETH FARRANT, 70 years of age, who died suddenly in her bed on Saturday morning. The deceased had been an inmate of the Workhouse about a year and a half, and evidence was given by Mr Warren that during the whole of the time she had been more or less indisposed, and subject to apoplexy. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died from Natural Causes."
Wednesday 13 November 1861, Issue 4986 – Gale Document No. Y3200701906
Mr Bremridge held an Inquest at Combmartin, on Thursday, upon the body of HENRY SAUNDERS, a labourer aged twenty-five. On the preceding morning the deceased returned to his father's house, took down his gun from the rack, and whilst separating the barrel from the stock the gun exploded, the contents entering the right side. He died in less than two hours afterwards. Verdict, Accidental Death.
JOHN LANCEY, of Georgeham, has forfeited his life through incautiousness. The deceased was employed at the Wheal Elizabeth Iron Mine, and contrary to instructions he went to work in a portion of the mine where working was prohibited. The result was that a considerable quantity of "deads" fell in upon and killed him. Mr J. H. Toller held an Inquest upon the body on Thursday, when the Jury returned a verdict of Accidental Death. John Lovering, who was working near the deceased at the time, narrowly escaped.
TORRINGTON – On Monday last, 11th inst., an Inquest was held before Richard Bremridge, Esq., County Coroner, at the Rolle Arms Inn, on the body of a little girl, aged four months, the illegitimate child of FANNY TAYLOR, of Mill-street, who was found dead by its mother on Saturday morning last It appeared from the evidence that the mother of deceased has been in the habit of giving the child frequent does of syrup of poppy; on Friday last she sent her little girl (named EMMA) to Mr Handford's, druggist, for a pennyworth of the above ingredient; she administered a dose to the deceased about twelve o'clock, and at six o'clock in the evening she repeated the dose, giving it about three-quarters of a tea-spoonful at a time: the mother observed that the child breathed hard during the night, and on the following morning she woke up at half-past eight o'clock and finding the child felt cold she became alarmed, and having called assistance she sent for Mr Hole, surgeon, who came immediately and found the child was dead. Mr J. C. Hole, gave it as his opinion that the deceased died from the effects of syrup of poppy carelessly administered by the mother, and the Jury returned a verdict accordingly. The Coroner very properly cautioned the mother against the practice of administering syrup of poppy to infants at all, and assured her that if a case of that sort occurred again, the party concerned would be held responsible for the consequences.
TOTNES – On Monday F. B. Cuming, County Coroner, held an Inquest on the body of a woman, aged ninety, named ELIZABETH BARTLETT, who died on the previous Friday, from injuries sustained on the night of the 2nd instant, in consequence of setting fire to her bed-curtains when lighting her candle with some Lucifer matches which she constantly kept by her bedside. A verdict in accordance with the facts was returned.
Wednesday 27 November 1861, Issue 4988 – Gale Document No. Y3200701955
EXETER – Fatal Accident. – On Thursday an accident, with a fatal result, happened to a sawyer, named WILLIAM LANDRAY. The deceased, who was seventy years of age, lived in Rack-street, and on Thursday morning he went to work at Mr Newton's, on the Haven Banks, in company with another sawyer, named Satterley. During the day they were engaged in constructing a sawpit, and the deceased while holding a piece of timber, about a hundred weight, slipped his foot, and fell into the pit. The timber did not descend on him, but the unfortunate man's neck was broken by the fall, notwithstanding the fact that the sawpit was not more than two or three feet deep. The body was immediately taken to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, but life was extinct ere he reached there. A verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned by the Jury at an Inquest held on the body on Friday, before the City Coroner.
ALLEGED MANSLAUGHTER. – An Inquest was held on Thursday, before Mr H. W. Hooper, Coroner for this city, at the Blue Boar Inn, Magdalen-street, on the body of MARY ANN RICE, a woman forty-four years of age, who died in the Devon and Exeter Hospital on the previous day. The deceased had for some time cohabited with a man, named Scown, and they lived together in West-street. RICE was much addicted to drinking, and about four months since she came home intoxicated. A quarrel ensued between the pair, and Scown appears to have treated her badly; and by pushing her against the table to have broken her jaw. In consequence of this she was obliged to go to the Hospital, where she remained an in-patient until the 29th of August, and then became an out-patient, her jaw still continuing, ununited. On the afternoon of the 19th instant she was again brought to the Hospital very ill. She told the nurses that she was aching all over, and added – "I was kicked by my man about a fortnight ago, and I have not been well since. Thank God, I am here, and I shall never go out again till I am carried out." She died the next morning, and Mr Huxley, house surgeon at the Hospital, who had a post mortem examination of the body, attributed death to constitutional disease, brought on by incessant pains and inability to take proper nutriment, owing to the jaw having never united. The Coroner, in summing up, informed the Jury that if they were of opinion that death was accelerated by an injury caused by Scown (notwithstanding her diseased constitution) the person or persons causing such injury were answerable for the death. The Jury returned a verdict of "Manslaughter," and Scown was committed for trial. He applied for bail, which the Coroner was willing to accept in his own surety of £10, and two sureties of £50 each. Bail not forthcoming, he was committed to prison.
Wednesday 27 November 1861, Issue 4988 – Gale Document No. Y3200701971
BARNSTAPLE – The infant son of MR JOHN DAVIS, painter, of High-street, was burnt to death on Monday evening week. The child was placed in a bassinet by the side of the fire in the nursery: an hour afterwards the room was found full of smoke and the bassinet on fire. The fire was soon extinguished, but the child was dead. It is supposed that a hot coal found its way under the India-rubber floor-cloth, for the ash plank of the floor was burnt through. Mr Incledon Bencraft held an Inquest upon the body on Tuesday, when a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
Wednesday 27 November 1861, Issue 4988 – Gale Document No. Y3200701957
COMBMARTIN – Mr J. H. Toller held an Inquest yesterday at Combmartin upon the body of THOMAS DRAPER, a labourer, aged 64. The deceased was a native of Challacombe: he went to work at Combmartin, and fell ill on the preceding Thursday: on the Sunday he expressed a wish to be conveyed to his home, and his wife sent a cart after him, but he died when within a mile of Challacombe. It was the opinion of Mr Alfred Kingdon, surgeon, of Combmartin, that the deceased died from inflammatory diarrhoea, accelerated by exposure to the cold. Verdict accordingly.
MAMHEAD – Child Murder. – An Inquest was held before R. R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner, on Monday, on the body of a new-born child. The facts appear to be these: A young woman, named SUSAN PULLAND, twenty-two years old, has been living as servant with the family of Mr Cornish, farmer, of Mamhead; for some weeks it was suspected that she was pregnant, but on being accused she repelled the imputation most emphatically. On Friday, however, she was observed to go to an outhouse, and to return in a short time, and Miss Cornish soon afterwards heard a scream emanating from the girl's bedroom, ran up-stairs, and saw PULLAND putting something under the bed. Miss Cornish asked if she should call her mother, and on the prisoner replying in the affirmative she did so, and on Mrs Cornish coming into the room she was horrified to see the prisoner holding a newly-born female infant, having both her hands round its neck, and pressing her fingers against the back part of its head. An alarm was instantly raised, and a medical man sent for: the prisoner and the infant being, meanwhile, put to bed. In a short time Mr Pycroft, surgeon, of Kenton, arrived, and paid every attention to both patients, but the child lingered until the next morning, when it expired about ten o'clock. Mr Pycroft made a post mortem examination of the body, when he found that, besides other injuries, the bone at the back part of the child's head was completely broken, - sufficient to cause death. The Jury returned a verdict of "Wilful Murder." At present the prisoner is unable to leave Mr Cornish's house; on her recovery she will be removed to the County Gaol to await her trial at the assizes.
Wednesday 11 December 1861, Issue 4990 – Gale Document No. Y3200702039
SHEBBEAR – MARY NORRISH, a widow, aged thirty-three, died suddenly on Saturday week. Some days before her death she had been suffering from quinsy; but from the favourable turn it appeared to have taken nothing fatal had been apprehended. On Saturday afternoon, however, the neighbours heard a moaning noise from MRS NORRISH'S house, and on going in found her lying on the floor. She died soon after. Policeman Blight made himself officious in the case, and is reported to have made some observations which were made the basis of a rumour that the poor woman had died from the neglect of the surgeon in attendance and the parochial authorities of Shebbear. The Coroner was communicated with, and on Wednesday these rumours were cleared up by an Inquest held by Mr Bremridge, which resulted in a verdict that the deceased had died from disease of the hart, "and that there had been no neglect on the part of the parish doctor or overseer."
Wednesday 18 December 1861, Issue 4991 – Gale Document No. Y3200702055
EXETER – Sudden Death Of A Child. – An Inquest was held at the Honiton Inn, Paris-street, on Friday evening, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, touching the death of THOMAS ARTHUR TUCKER, aged three years and nine months, the son of THOMAS WILLIAM TUCKER, a bootmaker, residing at 39 Paris-street. Mr S. S. Perkins stated that he had no doubt that the child died from inflammation of the lungs, which he thought was of three or four days standing. The Jury returned a verdict that the child died from Natural Causes.
DEATH FROM CHLOROFORM - On Wednesday an Inquest was held at the Valiant Soldier Inn, South-street, in this City, before H,. W. Hooper, Esq., City Coroner, on the body of ROBERT GRAY, who expired in the Devon and Exeter Hospital on the previous day while under the effects of chloroform. From the evidence adduced at the Enquiry it appeared that the deceased was a sailor and a native of North America. He was thirty-three years of age, and was admitted into the hospital on the previous Thursday, on a recommend from J. W. Buller, Esq., and he was suffering from an obnoxious disease. He had previously been in the Crediton Union Workhouse. Mr W. W. James, one of the surgeons at the Hospital, admitted deceased, and he became his patient. Mr James, in his evidence, said he had performed an operation on him on the Sunday following for phymosis, and on Tuesday it became necessary that strong nitric acid should be employed to stop the spreading. This was an exceedingly painful application. Deceased said he should be unable to bear it, and witness desired Mr Huxley to administer chloroform. According to custom, liquid chloroform is put on a sponge, in an instrument invented by the late Dr Todd, and the vapour is inhaled in certain proportions. The instrument provides that there shall be a due admixture of atmospheric air. In this case it was administered in little more than half-drachm doses. The first seeming to produce little or no effect, a second dose was given, and the second, or struggling stage, came on. While struggling, one of the deceased's hands was held by witness, the other by one of the pupils. Witness then felt his pulse at the wrist, cease, saw his features assume a pallid, livid look; the pupils of the eye were immediately dilated, and witness immediately motioned to the house surgeon to cease administering the chloroform. The usual means of restoration were applied, artificial respiration for half an hour – Dr Marshall Hall's plan – galvanism to the heart and spine; mustard poultices to the extremities; injections of brandy, and the application of ammonia to the nostrils, but all means of restoration failed. Witness considered death to have been caused by paralysis of the heart, no doubt induced by the chloroform. A post mortem examination has been made, at which witness was present. Every organ of the body was minutely examined, and there was nothing inconsistent with a proper state of health. There was no latent organic disease.
Mr Strowbridge (A Juror) asked if the post mortem examination had not been made without order.
THE CORONER said it was usual and important that anybody dying a violent death in the hospital should not be touched without his order, and in any case where he thought it proper, he should readily give such an order. He need not tell them that a post mortem examination was very necessary in this Enquiry, and if it had not been made it would have been his duty to have had it done; because they could not have come to a conclusion unless they had known whether the deceased had been suffering from any latent or organic disease. He trusted that in future cases of this kind bodies would not be touched without order. On the one hand he was very desirous of advancing science in every way, in the exercise of the power which the act gave him; and on the other hand it was his duty to watch with equal care that no post mortem examination was made as a matter of course in cases of violent death. He trusted that it would not be done in future, indeed he believed it would not. Mr Huxley observed that he was not aware of the state of the law.
THE CORONER replied that the surgeons had no power to touch a body under such circumstances without his order. In this case he was bound to say it was most desirable, or this Enquiry would have had to have been adjourned. As it was he had to hold the scales between the public and the hospital. Here there was no injury done by it to anyone. Mr James Huxley, house surgeon, corroborated the evidence of Mr James.
THE CORONER, after reviewing the facts, said the evidence both of Mr James and Mr Huxley, had been given in an admirable manner, and speaking of the latter gentleman, he might observe that he believed a man more highly qualified to fill the position of house-surgeon to the hospital could not be found. He agreed with Mr Huxley in believing that the cause of death was paralysis of the heart, induced by chloroform. The Jury accordingly returned a verdict to that effect.
Wednesday 25 December 1861, Issue 4992 – Gale Document No. Y3200702090
EXETER - Inquests. – An Inquest was held on Saturday, at the Valiant Soldier Inn, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of ELIZABETH ELLIS, aged four years, the daughter of GEORGE ELLIS, a mason residing at Ewings'-lane. The clothes of the child accidentally caught fire on the previous day. There did not appear to have been any neglect on the part of the parents of the child. Deceased was at once taken to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where she died on the 21st. Mr Huxley, the house surgeon, was examined touching the cause of death, which he stated resulted from the burns under which the deceased had suffered. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
An Inquest was held before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, at the Topsham Inn, on Monday, on the body of MARY MILLS, an inmate of the Devon and Exeter Hospital. Deceased was a domestic servant aged nineteen, and lived with Mr W. R. Mallett, of Exwick. It appeared that on the 19th November last, deceased was preparing breakfast when the boiler of the stove in the kitchen suddenly exploded, and deceased was very much scalded about the face and arms. She was at once taken to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where she has since been. It appears that the pipes conveying water into the boiler had become frozen, and, consequently, the supply of water cut off, which caused the explosion. Mr Huxley stated he considered the cause of death was exhaustion produced by the tetanus and burn combined. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 1 January 1862, Issue 4993 – Gale Document No. Y3200702121
EXETER – An Unnatural Father. – An Inquest was held on Friday week, at the Double Lock Inn, before Mr R. R. Crosse, County Coroner, on the body of a young woman named PIPER, about nineteen years of age, who drowned herself in the canal on the 19th ult., through the brutal conduct of her father. The evidence showed that the father had always behaved with great cruelty, and turned her out of doors for no reason, and had threatened her life. The deceased's mother corroborated this. My husband has always treated her very cruelly. When I told him what had happened to my daughter, and that I had seen her mantle and bonnet. he said "I am d--- glad of it, and if it is she who is drowned I'd stay up all night to make her coffin. Now I shall be happy." It appeared that the deceased had subscribed to an insurance company, by which her representatives became entitled to receive £8 11s. on her death. It was thought, however, that there was no evidence to show that the father had deliberately driven his daughter to commit suicide with the view of getting this money. A policeman said that when the body was found the father SAMUEL E. PIPER was present, and he did not seem the least concerned. It witness's absence he tried to take the earrings out of his daughter's ears. A Juryman said that he heard the father a second time propose to take the earrings out of his daughter's ears; in fact, it was almost the first words he uttered when the body was discovered. He (the Juror) replied that if he attempted to do so he would kick him into the canal, where his daughter had just come from. The Coroner said he should not have wondered if he had done so, for he could easily imagine that the feelings of any Englishman would not have been kindly at such an exhibition of heartless conduct on the part of a parent. The Coroner then summed up the evidence, and in the course of his remarks he said that of all the melancholy cases which had come before him this was the most distressing. If it were true that the father had driven his daughter out of her mind he did not know how they should meet the case. He could only wish that their verdict would reach him, but he was afraid it could not. All they had to Inquire into was how this girl came into the water. The Jury returned a verdict of "Found Drowned" which met with the approval of the Coroner. The public officer then made an application for the policy of insurance, so that the parish, which had been put to the expense of providing the coffin, might be able to draw the money from the company. The Coroner at present refused to sign any certificate.
Wednesday 1 January 1862, Issue 4993 – Gale Document No. Y3200702117
PLYMOUTH – Death in A Railway Carriage. - In one of the second-class carriages of the night mail from London which arrives in Plymouth about 5.30 a.m., was found on Monday morning, the dead body of a seaman, supposed to be JOHN NOLAN. In the carriage with the deceased were found two bags of seamen's luggage. In one of these was the jacket of a petty officer of the navy. The deceased wore a Sebastopol medal, a Baltic medal, and a Turkish Crimean medal. From a clue obtained by some papers found on the deceased, Mr Cockshott, the traffic superintendent of the line, set the telegraph to work, and from Haslar Hospital a reply was received – "JAMES NOLAN, yeoman of signals, late of Narcissus, APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN DISCHARGED FROM HOSPITAL ON THE 13TH December, to Victory, cured. Nothing is known at Haslar of his friends, except that he belonged to Plymouth." An Inquest was held on Monday by the Borough Coroner, and the evidence of Mr Cockshott, the porters, and a medical gentleman having been taken, the Jury returned a verdict that the deceased was found dead in a railway carriage, that he had been drinking, and whilst asleep, in some movement of the carriage, accidentally fell off his seat, and the side of his head came in contact with the edge of the wheel-box, probably causing concussion or compression of the brain.
Wednesday 8 January 1862, Issue 4994 – Gale Document No. Y3200702150
FATAL ACCIDENT. – On the 12th ultimo THOMAS CALLING, a labourer, of Crediton, fifty-five years of age, sustained severe injuries by the falling of a large stone on his left foot, while at work at Poxberry Quarry. He was taken to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where he died on the 2nd instant – the injuries to the foot inducing tetanus. At an Inquest held on the body on Friday, before the City Coroner, a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
A shocking case of death from starvation came under the notice of the City Coroner (H. W. Hooper, Esq.,) and a Jury on Thursday. The name of the deceased, represented to be a woman of weak intellect, was SARAH ANN HOUSEMAN. For fifteen years she had been an inmate of the Exeter Workhouse. She left here in June of last year to go to live with an aunt at Reading, but soon returned and has since obtained a precarious livelihood by begging or other means. She has generally lodged at the common lodging-house in Smythen-street, had refused several offers made to her to return to the workhouse, and died on Thursday morning. The body was a mere skeleton dressed in rags and swarming with vermin.
Wednesday 15 January 1862, Issue 4995 – Gale Document No. Y3200702182
INQUESTS – On Friday an Inquest was held at the Three Tuns Inn, before the City Coroner, on the body of an infant child of MR CLAPP, a shoemaker, in Bedford-street. Mr A. J. Cumming, surgeon, attributed death to suffocation, caused by the pressure of the child against the mother. The Jury returned a verdict of – "Death from Overlaying."
On Monday, the Coroner held an Inquest at the Sawyers' Arms, on the body of an infant aged nine months the son of MR GEORGE H. SILMAN, of Prospect-place, who died suddenly the previous day. Verdict – "Spasms of the glottis."
Yesterday another Inquest was held by the Coroner, at the Round Tree Inn, on the body of WILLIAM CARNALL, aged thirty-two, who died suddenly about twelve o'clock the previous night. Deceased was a soldier, and had served in India for sixteen years, and as discharged from the service about seven months since with a pension. Verdict – "Died by the Visitation of God."
DEATH BY A HORSE'S KICK – A few days since an Inquest was held at the Royal Oak Inn, Nadderwater, by R. R. Crosse, Esq., Coroner, on the body of JOHN SEWARD, about seventeen years of age, the only son of MR J. SEWARD, of Heckworthy Farm,. Whitestone. The evidence was to the effect that while deceased was attending to one of his father's horses the animal kicked him and killed him almost instantly. A verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned by the Jury.
Wednesday 29 January 1862, Issue 4997 – Gale Document No. Y3200702264
An Inquest was held at Widworthy a few days since, by S. M. Cox, County Coroner, on the body of JASPER COLLINS, aged forty-three years, a farmer of Dalwood, who committed suicide by hanging himself at Slade, where he had been staying a few days. The deceased has been for some time in a low desponding state.
Wednesday 5 February 1862, Issue 4998 – Gale Document No. Y3200702288
EXETER – Inquest. – Mr H. W. Hooper, the City Coroner, held an Inquest at the Sawyer's Arms, Preston-street, on Saturday, on the body of an old man, seventy-three years of age, named ALEXANDER MAITLAND, who is believed to have formerly been an ironmonger, and who died on the previous day in a house in Rack-street, occupied by a man named Luke. The deceased, who, it appeared, was an invalid and had kept his bed for the past twelve months, rented a small room in the back part of Luke's house. He came there from prison, to which latter place he had been committed for wandering about the city without a home. On Thursday evening when Luke came home to tea he smelt fire, and went to deceased's room and found his bed was on fire. There was no flame, but it was smouldering, and deceased's shirt was burnt on his back. About ten minutes previously a candle had been take him, which was placed on a chair by the bed-side. Deceased was lifted out of bed, and conveyed to another room. He died the afternoon following. MAITLAND was in the receipt of £24 a year from his sons, who reside in London. Mr Perkins, surgeon, was of opinion that deceased had died from congestion of the lungs, which no doubt had been accelerated by the shock from the fire. Verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 5 February 1862, Issue 4998 – Gale Document No. Y3200702284
HONITON – Fatal Termination Of The Gun Accident. - We regret to announce the fatal termination from the gun accident as stated in the Flying Post last week. For several days the young Donald FARQUHARSON lingered in great agony, when death put a stop to his sufferings during the night of Thursday. On Saturday afternoon an Inquest was held before S. M. Cox, Esq., at the Black Lion Inn, several of the boys were examined, which plainly showed the affair was accidental. The Jury, after a short consultation, returned a verdict of "Accidental Death", and the Coroner, at their request, addressed some strong remarks to the boy Halls for having carried a loaded gun through the streets without removing the percussion cap, and for having allowed other and younger boys to meddle with the gun without any caution as to its being loaded, which it appeared, he had failed to give.
Wednesday 19 February 1862, Issue 5000 – Gale Document No. Y3200702368
NORTHMOLTON – Inquest. – On Thursday last an Inquest was held at the Somerset Inn, in the above parish, before R. Bremridge, Esq., Coroner, on the body of JOHN HERNAMAN, labourer, of the same place. The deceased had been ill for some time in the Union, and on Tuesday last his friends removed him to his own house, but in about two hours after his arrival he died. Dr Cutcliffe stated that he considered deceased had died from apoplexy. Verdict in accordance with the medical testimony.
Wednesday 5 March 1862, Issue 5002 – Gale Document No. Y3200702425
EXETER – Sudden Death. – An Inquest was held at the Half Moon Hotel, on Saturday evening, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, and a respectable Jury, on the body of JOHANNA HENTON. The deceased was mistress of the Free School, Broadclist, and on Saturday afternoon she went to Messrs. Green and Bennett's, drapers, for the purpose of seeing the housekeeper. She had some dinner there, and while sitting talking fell from her chair. Mr William Woodman was sent for, but before he arrived life was extinct. That gentleman was of opinion that deceased died from the rupture of a blood vessel in the head. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died by the Visitation of God."
Wednesday 12 March 1862, Issue 5003 – Gale Document No. Y3200702448
EXETER – Mr H. W. Hooper, Coroner, held an Inquest at the Blue Boar Inn, Magdalen-street, on Thursday, on the body of ABRAHAM GORWYN LAMBERT CANN. The deceased was the son of the well-known wrestler, and resided with his father at Colebrooke. On the 2nd January deceased, and his father returned together from the Bell Inn, Colebrooke. The father went to bed, leaving deceased, who was tipsy, smoking; and a short time afterwards deceased ran upstairs with his trowsers and shirt on fire. He was much burnt, and was taken to the Hospital, where he died on Wednesday. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
FATAL ACCIDENT TO A CARABINIER. – On Wednesday, R. R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner, held an Inquest at the Hospital at the Topsham Barracks, on the body of WILLIAM CLARRIDGE, a private in the 6th Carabiniers, who met with his death under the following circumstances:- On the Tuesday previous the deceased, who is a servant to Lieut. Marryat, went to the Exeter Barracks on duty. On his return through South-street, his horse became restive, and started off towards the Topsham Road. On reaching the entrance to the Friars, the horse stumbled and fell, pitching the deceased on his head. He was taken up insensible, and removed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, from whence he was taken to the hospital at the barracks in the evening. He lingered there until the Monday after, when he died, the injuries having resulted in compression of the brain. The Jury, after having heard the evidence of the ostler at the Valiant Soldier Inn, and the attendant at the hospital, returned a verdict of "Accidental Death". The funeral took place at Heavitree on Thursday, at three o'clock, and in spite of the heavy rain a large crowd assembled.
An Inquest was held on Monday at the Country House Inn, before Mr H. W. Hooper, City Coroner, on the body of MARY ANN TAPP, who had died that morning. The child was the illegitimate daughter of SUSAN TAPP, who lived in Catherine-street, and was confined of twins on the 21st of January last, and of which the deceased was one. the body was in a very emaciated state. Mr Cumming, surgeon, gave it as his opinion that the child died from want of sufficient nourishment. He visited the mother about a fortnight after she was confined, and advised her as she was so ill, to feed her children upon milk and water. The mother said she gave the child the night previous to its death a little milk and water, and in the morning, between nine and ten, when a girl named Richards came in, they discovered the child was dead. The relieving officer, Mr Fildew, visited her on the 24th February, and found her in a state of great destitution; she refused any relief, to have any medical attendance, or to go into the workhouse; but Mr Fildew gave her some groceries, bread, &c. The Inquiry was then adjourned until Tuesday, in order that a post mortem examination might be made. The Inquest was resumed at four o'clock on Tuesday, when Mary Radmore, the midwife who attended TAPP in her confinement, said the child was born healthy, and remained so until she left it. The mother was always very kind to it. A fortnight afterwards she called in, and found it much emaciated, and the mother very ill. Sarah Richards said she lived with the mother for a few days a short time after her confinement, and then left her as she was getting better. She went again on Monday morning and found the child dead in the bed with the mother, who appeared much terrified about it. The Rev. Dr. Slatter, who had visited the mother and baptised the child, said he found the former destitute: he communicated with Mr Fildew about it, who went and saw her. From what he had seen he thought the mother kind to the child. Mr A. J. Cumming said he had made a post mortem examination of the body, and found the internal appearance such as to lead to the conclusion that it died from want of proper nourishment. The Coroner having carefully gone through the evidence, the Jury retired and in a short time returned a verdict that the child died from want of sufficient nourishment, which the mother was unable to afford to it herself; and appended to the verdict a request that the Coroner would censure the mother for refusing the relief offered by Mr Fildew; which the Coroner did, warning her, and adding that she had narrowly escaped being committed on the capital charge.
Wednesday 19 March 1862, Issue 5004 – Gale Document No. Y3200702504
NEWTON ST. CYRES – Mr Cross held an Inquest at the Crown and Sceptre Inn, on Friday, upon the body of WILLIAM CLATWORTHY. The deceased fell on a fender whilst fighting with his brother at the Three Horse Shoes Inn; and having died within a fortnight of the occurrence it was thought that he injured himself by the fall. The evidence showed that the deceased was in an enfeebled state at the time of the fight, and as there were no external marks the Jury returned a verdict of "Died of Inflammation of the lungs from Natural Causes."
BRIXHAM – Mr F. B. Cuming, Deputy Coroner, held an Inquest on Saturday, at the Waterman's Arms, Higher Brixham, upon the body of JAMES ELLIOTT, aged nineteen, son of MR CHARLES ELLIOTT, farmer. On the previous Thursday the deceased was returning from one of his father's fields, the horse took fright, and the poor young fellow was knocked down by the cart wheel, which fearfully crushed his body. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 26 March 1862, Issue 5005 – Gale Document No. Y3200702522
BRIXHAM – At an Inquest held yesterday, before F. B. Cuming, Esq., on the body of JOHN MARTIN, late landlord of the Tower Arms, a verdict of Manslaughter was returned against William Shears, who, on the previous Tuesday night, in a drunken fit, struck the deceased over the eye because he refused to draw him any more beer.
BROADCLIST – On Thursday afternoon an Inquest was held by R. R. Crosse, Esq., Coroner for this division of the county, on the body of a male infant found on the previous afternoon concealed among some browse in the orchard of Mr Scanes, of Trow Farm. The child was proved to be that of EMMA PARSONS', a servant in the employ of Mrs Scanes, and on the evidence of Mr James Ball, surgeon, that the child had been born alive and then had either died from violent blows on the head, or from suffocation, the Jury returned a verdict of "Wilful Murder" against the mother, who was accordingly committed, on the Coroner's Inquisition, to take her trial at the next assizes.
Wednesday 26 March 1862, Issue 5005 – Gale Document No. Y3200702534
FATAL ACCIDENT AT THE "WESTERN TIMES" OFFICE
On Saturday afternoon an investigation, which occupied about three hours and a half, took place before the City Coroner (H. W. Hooper, Esq.,) and a Jury, into the circumstances attending the death of a little girl, eleven years of age, named MARY ELIZABETH COLEMAN, the daughter of MR C. F. COLEMAN, parish clerk of St. Olave. The death was occasioned by injuries sustained on the previous day at the office of the Western Times, by the bursting of the boiler of the steam machinery by which the paper is printed. Mr Latimer in his evidence stated that this boiler was originally put up in 1846 or '47. The engine man was George Hookings, but over the engineer was a machine man (Chas. Bickham) whose duty it was to exercise a general supervision over the machinery. On Friday the machinery was at work as usual on publishing days; and about one o'clock there was a stoppage to make a correction in an advertisement. The apprentices and errand-boys at work in the printing-office ran into the engine-room during this temporary cessation of work, and MARY ELIZABETH COLEMAN went there with her brother's dinner. Whilst the boys and the little girl were thus standing round the fire-place the accident happened: the boiler burst, and the engine-room was flooded with the boiling water. The little girl was the most severely scalded, and though instantly removed to the Hospital she died at eight o'clock in the evening. The engine-man and the boys were all too severely scalded to attend the Inquest.
Coming to the causes of the accident, William Hill, the foreman of the newspaper office, said, - "It is usual to work the supplement off on Thursday, and this was done this week. The fire was lighted to work off the paper on Friday morning about ten o'clock, and the printing began about twenty minutes before twelve. After the engine had been working about an hour the engine-man came to me and said that he thought he day before there had been a leakage from the boiler; he did not say positively that there had been, but spoke doubtingly, and did not seem to be in any trouble about it. I found fault with him for not having told me this earlier so that the boiler might have been examined in the interim, between the working of the supplement and the paper. To this he replied that, before lighting the fire that morning he had got in on the bars, but could see no sign of any damp or leakage, and had accordingly lighted the fire. I then went down into the engine-room and opened the doors of the furnace to see if I could see anything. The fire was bright and clear, and if there had then been any leakage I must have seen it, but I could not detect the dripping of water or anything of the sort; I was looking ten minutes or a quarter of an hour I should think." Within a quarter of an hour of this examination the accident happened.
Against this statement there was the evidence of Charles Bickham, the supervisor of the machinery. He said, - "Hookings said nothing to me about the boiler on Thursday; but on Friday he said there was a leakage then. That was about a quarter to twelve. What Hookings said was this: "There's water coming down from somewhere, but I don't know where, whether from the boiler or the level water-pipes. I took no further notice; but I looked in and saw the drippings of water coming down; it was dripping from the front plate on which the boiler rests. It continued for about two minutes and then it stopped: I thought it was only an escape from the water pipe and did nothing."
After the accident Mr Alfred Bodley, the engineer, was sent for, and as his evidence is material to the Enquiry we give it in extensor. – "The first I had to do with this boiler was in May, 1858. It was then cleaned, examined, and a Bourdon's gauge put up, on my recommendation. Again in May, 1859, I examined it on the occasion of another machine being adapted to the engine. I then recommended the boiler to be strengthened, and I did the work.. A longitudinal stay was put through the centre of the boiler. This was made of an inch and a quarter wrought iron; and was strongly fixed at the ends to cleats riveted on to the ends. At the same time I put on a glass water gauge and gauge cocks. The boiler was then proved up to about six atmospheres – that is, about 75 lbs. pressure to the square inch above the atmospheric pressure. This was done to ensure that the boiler was safe. It worked on then till the 1st of January, 1861, when it was again cleaned, and again on the 3rd of December, 1861. At most of these times I have been in the boiler myself and examined it, testing it with a hammer in the usual way to find a sound plate or a crazed one where we usually look for them. I did not notice any unusual sound that would lead me to suppose there was a think place, and I had every reason to believe that the boiler was in a sound condition to work, though I knew it was an old one, that is, about fifteen years old, and twenty years we consider a fair age for a boiler to work."
THE CORONER – "But this boiler only works twice a week."
Mr Bodley. – "A boiler that is only used once or twice a week is no better than a boiler which is kept working every day of the year, perhaps rather worse. Yesterday I was sent for about half-past two to examine the boiler. At first I saw nothing unusual in it or the masonry, except that in the flue there were two or three pieces of broken brick. The fire looked as if it had been drowned. I looked under the boiler to the blow-off plug, thinking that the stoker might have accidentally knocked that off with his poker: that was all right. I then opened the man-hole of the boiler: there was not more than a gallon of water in the boiler. One of my men afterwards entered it with a candle, and I examined the boiler all round. The fissure in it was at the corner of the angle-iron. It was a rent of about twenty inches in length, and at the utmost not exceeding a quarter of an inch, in width. The other parts of the boiler were in fair working condition. The plate is corroded round the edge of the angle-iron into a peculiar kind of groove, and the line of fracture is exactly in a line with this groove. The least thickness is about one-sixteenth of an inch. The way I account for that groove is from the expansion of the cylindrical part on the plate end, the end of the boiler being flat like a drum. Within a quarter of an inch of the fracture the boiler is of the right thickness. It was not an explosion but a rupture.
THE CORONER, in summing up the evidence to the Jury, said the statements of Mr Latimer and Mr Bodley clearly shewed that there was no blame attaching to Mr Latimer, but that on the contrary every precaution had been taken to ensure the safety of those working the engine. He pointed to the discrepancies in the evidence of Hill and Bickham and said it was for the Jury to consider whether the leakage referred to was of such a character that the man in charge ought to have stopped the engine, and if so to what extent fault was attributable to him for not having earlier apprised those who superintended the general working of the machinery. His own opinion was that everything had been done which could ordinarily be expected; but that of course was a matter for the Jury to consider.
The Jury, after a few minutes consideration, returned through their foreman a verdict to the effect that they did not consider, according to the evidence, that there was any blame attaching to Mr Latimer or to any one connected with the steam engine, and accordingly returned a verdict of ".Accidental Death."
THE CORONER – I quite concur in the verdict, gentlemen; I think it a very proper one. Mr Latimer seems to have taken every precaution by having the boilers examined from time to time.
MR LATIMER – I have to thank you, Mr Coroner, and gentlemen, for this very impartial and patient hearing of the case. The Enquiry then closed.
Wednesday 2 April 1862, Issue 5006 – Gale Document No. Y3200702559
DEATH FROM DROWNING – On Wednesday evening CHRISTOPHER ROBINSON, a rough rider in the 6th Dragoon Guards (or Carabiniers), stationed at Topsham Barracks, was drowned in the Exe, just below Bampford Speke Church. It was Brampford and Stoke Canon races on the day named; the deceased had been present at the sports, and had become very intoxicated. About six o'clock in the evening he went down to the water's edge, it is supposed with the intention of washing his boots, when he fell into the river, and despite the efforts used his body was not found that night. A fruitless search was continued on Thursday by Sergeant Burnell and some policemen; the same on Friday, but early on Saturday morning – between five and six o'clock – two brothers, named Hillman, labourers, of Brampford, found the body with a "groper." It was very near the spot where the unfortunate man fell in, and the body was lying in eight or nine feet of water. It was conveyed to the Agricultural Inn, Brampford, where the Coroner for the district, R. R. Crosse, Esq., held an Inquest on it the same day. A verdict of "Accidentally Drowned" was returned by the Jury.
EXETER – Inquests. - Yesterday the City Coroner (H. W. Hooper, Esq.,) held an Inquest at the Valiant Soldier Inn, on the body of JAMES HOOKWAY, a mason's labourer, who fell down dead in North-street, the preceding evening. Mr Edye, who had made a post mortem examination of the body, was unable to discover any cause of death: deceased must have died from natural causes. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Another Inquest was held on the same day on the body of MARY MASON, aged 64. On the 23rd ult. deceased fell down stairs, and broke her thigh. She was taken to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, but she only survived a week. Verdict – "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 2 April 1862, Issue 5006 – Gale Document No. Y3200702575
KNOWSTONE – Coroner's Inquest. – An Inquest was held at the schoolroom, in the above parish, before J. H. Toller, Esq., Deputy Coroner, upon the body of JOHN TROUT, labourer, of the same parish, aged forty-nine. Deceased was in the employ of Mr William Elstone, farmer. On Monday last his master gave him notice to leave in consequence of some impropriety in his conduct, and this appeared to have preyed upon his mind and led him to put an end to his existence. Deceased was missed the same night; and on the following morning his young master, on going to attend some cattle, saw him suspended from a ladder which stood against a hayrick. Mr Elstone, junr., gave an alarm, and some men came and took deceased down. On the hayrick were found deceased's hat and a copy of "Russell's Hymns." The father of deceased, was, for some years previous to his death, in an unsound state of mind, and on one occasion attempted to bleed himself to death. Verdict, "Deceased committed death by hanging, but there was not sufficient evidence to shew what was his state of mind at the time." Deceased was much addicted to drinking.
CHILD MURDER. A very painful case of infanticide has occurred in North Devon. At the Inquest held at Fernhill, in the parish of Tetcott, before H. A. Vallack, Esq., Coroner, the following particulars transpired:- The deceased child, RICHARD HOCKIN, was the illegitimate child of MARTHA HOCKIN, a poor woman apparently reduced to the lowest stage of destitution. It appears that on Wednesday she went to the house of a woman named Oxenham, at Fernhill, having her little boy with her. She enquired for William Headon, and learning that he lived next door she went to see him. In the evening Headon had an interview with MARTHA HOCKIN in Mrs Oxenham's house, but what transpired between them was not made known at the Inquest. After Headon had left the poor woman complained of hunger, stating that she had taken nothing since the morning. Mrs Oxenham, though herself but a poor woman, very generously gave her some tea and bread. HOCKIN remained in the house till midnight, and when the inmates were going to bed she asked permission to sit on a stool in the porch of the house till daylight, which was granted. Crushed by pinching poverty, weighed down perhaps by remorse – an outcast, with the young innocent at her breast, doomed perhaps to a life of misery through her shame, it were easy to guess the train of thought which passed through that poor girl's untutored mind. There she sat in the cold porch, with the chilling winds of March and the pelting pitiless rain inviting an act which should rid her and her babe for ever of all worldly trouble. It is not known whether the poor creature intended to take her own life as well as that of her child: all at present known is that sometime after daylight Mrs Oxenham and a man named Beer were attracted to the banks of the Lana lake, by the screams of a woman. Going to the spot they found HOCKIN seated on the bank in a state of deep distress. Seeing them she exclaimed frantically, "I've drowned my child," "Do kill me," "I've drowned my dear boy." She had the dead child in her lap, wrapped up in her mantle; its clothes were saturated with water. Several persons were afterwards congregated, and the poor woman said she had drowned her child in the Lana lake. The verdict of the Jury was "Wilful Murder," and the prisoner was at once removed to the County Gaol.
Wednesday 9 April 1862, Issue 5007 – Gale Document No. Y3200702607
BIDEFORD – An Inquest was held on Thursday at the Town-hall, before T. L Pridham, Esq., Coroner, on the body of ELIZABETH CATHERINE HEWITT, wife of JOHN WALLER HEWITT, Esq., (late of Warmington-hill) who was found dead in her bed early on the previous Tuesday morning, at Mrs Hartness's lodgings, in Bridge-street, where she had lived since October last. The deceased had enjoyed tolerably good health till the evening previous to her death, when she was found by Mrs Hartness sitting on the floor, resting against some boxes, very unwell. She was soon after removed to bed, when she seemed much better, and it was not deemed necessary to send for medical assistance. About four o'clock the next morning, on MR HEWITT awaking, he found his wife lying by his side, a corpse. Mr Hogg, surgeon, was at once sent for, but the deceased was quite dead. Mr William Henry Acland, who had been occasionally consulted by the deceased, had remarked that "she had appeared greatly altered of late," and had noticed that she had unquestionable signs of epilepsy. He had no hesitation in saying that she died from disease of the heart. The Jury concurred with the Coroner that there was no need of a post mortem examination, and returned a verdict in accordance with the medical testimony.
Wednesday 16 April 1862, Issue 5008 – Gale Document No. Y3200702629
On Friday MR WM. FRENCH, who resided with his son-in-law at Widdicombe, near Ashburton, hung himself in an outhouse. At the Inquest it was proved that FRENCH had more than once been subject to fits of insanity, and the Jury returned their verdict accordingly.
FATAL ACCIDENT AT CHRISTOW – On Thursday morning a young man, named WILLIAM ORCHARD, was engaged in charging a hole in the Trunk Mill Silver Lead Ore Mine with powder, and whilst "tamping" it the powder exploded and he was killed on the spot. Cause of the accident not known, but supposed to have arisen from a spark from the rock occasioned by a blow from the iron bar with which he was working. A comrade, who fortunately received no injury, gave an alarm, and the corpse was removed to the surface. An Inquest was held on Saturday, and a verdict of "Accidental Death" returned. An additionally painful feature in this case is reported in the fact that the poor fellow had completed all his arrangements for marriage, which was to have taken place next week.
Wednesday 23 April 1862, Issue 5009 – Gale Document No. Y3200702675
SOUTHMOLTON – Found Drowned. – An Inquest was held at the Guildhall on Monday last, before James Flexman, Esq., upon the body of MARY TREWIN, widow, aged sixty-one. It appears that deceased had been ill for two years past, and latterly had been in a very desponding state of mind, and had expressed her intention of drowning herself near Parkhouse Bridge, and had stated that if any time she was missing, she should be found there. She accordingly was found drowned there on Sunday, the 13th instant, having committed the rash act about half-past nine on the evening previous. Deceased had attempted to destroy herself about a fortnight before but was prevented. Verdict – "Deceased destroyed herself by drowning whilst labouring under an attack of Temporary Insanity."
Wednesday 7 May 1862, Issue 5011 – Gale Document No. Y3200702731
EXETER – Warning to Drunkards. – On Saturday the City Coroner, H. W. Hooper, Esq., held an Inquest at the Queen's Head inn, West Quarter, on the body of THOMAS COOKSLEY, a cattle drover of Waterloo, a small village distance about two miles from Woolscombe, Somerset, who died suddenly the same morning at the Blue Boy Inn. The deceased was a single man, about twenty three years old; and a fellow drover, named George Beck, who gave evidence before the jury, stated that he had for some years been an inveterate drunkard. Beck, who had been acquainted with him for fourteen years, had seen him frequently drink a pint of clear gin at one draught; and on one occasion when in Cornwall deceased had swallowed three pints of the same spirit at one time. Beck and COOKSLEY worked together on Friday last driving cattle, and Beck said that they drank during the day three quarterns of rum and three half-pints of beer. Deceased, when in Exeter, had lately lodged at the Blue Boy, where he cohabited with a woman, named Rowe. On returning to his lodging on Friday evening Rowe fetched him some more beer, which he drank and went to bed. At four o'clock the next morning he became very sick and almost instantly expired, without uttering a word. Mr T. Hawkins, surgeon, was speedily in attendance, and that gentleman now said he had no doubt that the deceased had died from disease of the heart produced wholly by excessive drinking. In the course of the Enquiry Mary Ann Caseley, the wife of the landlord of the Blue Boy, was examined as to whether she had often seen the deceased drunk, and the manner in which she fenced with the questions, called forth the strong condemnation of the Coroner. The Jury returned a verdict in accordance with the evidence given by Mr Hawkins.
Wednesday 7 May 1862, Issue 5011 – Gale Document No. Y3200702739
BARNSTAPLE – HENRY LIST GAYDON and THOMAS HARTNOLL, aged ten and eleven years, of Pilton, were drowned at Pottington on Tuesday evening week. Accompanied by another lad (Frederick Tanner) the two unfortunate boys went to bathe in the river Taw at Pottington. GAYDON went into the river and got out of his depth; HARTNOLL went to his assistance, but both were drowned. the body of GAYDON was discovered the same night, and the other the next morning. Mr Bremridge, County Coroner, held an Inquest upon the bodies, and the Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
CULLOMPTON – On Thursday an Inquest was held by R. R. Crosse, Esq., Coroner, at the King's Arms, on the body of a middle-aged woman, the wife of JAMES LAKE, a tanner, in the employ of Mr Selwood. Deceased was the mother of two children. It appeared from the evidence adduced at the Enquiry that a few days ago she was confined, when she died. From his conduct towards her and expressions made use of by him, suspicions were directed towards the husband as having been guilty of illusage towards her prior to confinement, and enquiries were consequently instituted as to the real cause of death. The Jury returned a verdict of "Death from Natural Causes."
Wednesday 14 May 1862, Issue 5012 – Gale Document No. Y3200702770
NEWTON ABBOTT – On Saturday a man, named RICHARD WOTTON, between fifty and sixty years of age, residing in East-street, committed suicide by hanging himself, on Hennaborough Farm, near the Nunnery at Abbotsleigh, and about two miles from Newton, belonging to Mrs Beazeley, of the Globe Hotel, in whose employ he had been for a number of years as hind. An Inquest was held on Monday by Mr F. B. Cumming, the Deputy Coroner, and a verdict returned to the effect that the deceased committed suicide whilst in a state of Temporary Insanity.
Wednesday 21 May 1862, Issue 5013 – Gale Document No. Y3200702821
HORRIBLE CASE OF INFANTICIDE. - On Monday week an Inquest was held at the Dolphin Inn, Clawton, before H. A. Vallack, Esq., the Coroner for the district, on the body of a newly born infant. It appeared from the evidence then adduced that it was the child of MARY ANN BASKERVILLE, who was then in custody, a widow woman, of some property, and living at Clawton. The verdict was an open one of "Found Dead;" no sufficient evidence in the Coroner's opinion having been adduced as to the cause, but he recommended the Jury to say the child was born alive. The prisoner was retained in custody by the police.
Wednesday 11 June 1862, Issue 5016 – Gale Document No. Y3200702920
FATAL ACCIDENT – An Inquest was held at the Blue Boar Inn, on Thursday, before H. D. Barton, Esq., Deputy Coroner, on the body of WILLIAM MILTON, a labourer, twenty-three years of age, lately in the employ of Mr Rowe, farmer, of Narrcott, in the parish of Spreyton. About three o'clock in the afternoon of the 29th ult., a woman named Elizabeth Lang, at Westwood, observed a waggon drawn by two horses going at a furious rate down the hill near her house without any one in charge of it. A short distance up the hill she found the deceased on the ground insensible. Wm. Labbett, smith, picked him up, and conveyed him to a neighbour's house, whence he was removed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital. Mr Huxley, the house surgeon, said the deceased appeared intoxicated when admitted. From an external examination that he had made he found several ribs and the collar bone broken. He could not state positively the cause of death, as many persons frequently recovered who had sustained severe injuries. It was quite possible that death had been accelerated by some internal disease. The house surgeon also stated that when the deceased was admitted into the hospital he was in a most filthy state; his body was covered with vermin. The Jury returned a verdict of Accidental Death, and expressed their astonishment that an indoor servant at a respectable farmer's house should have been in such a state.
EXETER - SUICIDE OF AN ATTORNEY. - Mr H. D. Barton, Deputy Coroner, for this city, held an Inquest at Pratt's New London Inn, on Thursday evening, upon the body of CHARLES BLUNDEN STRONG, formerly practising as an attorney at Tiverton, but recently residing at Sidmouth. Deceased arrived at the London Inn soon after eight on Tuesday evening: there was nothing in his manner to attract any unusual attention from the waiters; but what seems to have been a rare occurrence he went to bed perfectly sober. As he gave no instructions about being called next morning no particular notice was taken of his remaining in his bedroom till two in the afternoon of Wednesday, at which hour the boots went to his bedroom and found him dead in bed. Mr T. W. Caird, surgeon, was instantly sent for, but medical aid was unavailing. It was considered that the deceased had been dead some eight or nine hours previous to the discovery by the boots. On the dressing-table a skin cap and a leather cap (used for tying over the top of a bottle) were found; and on the bed-steps was a tumbler, with a blue stoppered phial, such as would be used for prussic acid. It was an ounce phial and was labelled "hydrocyanic acid." The other words on the label were in English and Latin, indicating the proportions. Mr Caird made a post mortem examination of the body; and that gentleman gave it as his opinion that death was caused from prussic acid. In the coat pocket of the deceased were found three letters – one of them (directed to Mr Robert Wreford, solicitor of this city,) was dated Sidmouth, June 3rd. "My dear Wreford – If you will call at the New London Inn tomorrow morning, you will find all that is left of me. Should I be dead bury me directly, and let the funds come out of the money in the hands of the late Mr P. Blundell's trustees. (the remainder of the letter alluded to the deceased's private affairs, and his disappointment. He owed between £500 and £600). The letter concludes:- "I shall wish you good-bye by-and-bye, but you will know nothing of it. I am perfectly 'used up.' Yours here – hereafter dare not say, - C. B. STRONG." In the margin were these words, "Earthly law is the confusion of tongues. See Distribution books. All to aunts, nothing to cousins." Mr Wreford said this alluded to the distribution of the very large property, some £200,000 or £300,000. It was a very mixed up affair, which he did not thoroughly understand, as he only knew what the deceased had told him. It was stated that the deceased had led a gay life, had spent his own fortune, and part f his wife's, and had for years been in embarrassed circumstances. MRS STRONG dies some four months since. Deceased had several children – two sons in New Zealand, and a son in England, but his residence was unknown. The Jury returned a verdict "That the deceased destroyed himself by poison while in a state of Temporary Insanity."
SUICIDE BY A RETIRED FARMER - Much excitement prevailed in the city and more particularly in Paul-street, on Saturday, occasioned by the fact that a man who had lodged at Mr James Tancock's, barber, Paul-street, had early that morning committed suicide by cutting his throat with a penknife. An Inquest was held at the North Devon Inn the same evening, before H. D. Barton, Esq., Deputy-Coroner, and a respectable Jury, when it appeared that the deceased, who was called SAMUEL WIDGER, was a stranger in the city; that he had arrived at Mr Tancock's – where he had been recommended by a Mrs Tuck – about nine o'clock the previous night, and inquired for a night lodging, which he obtained. He sat up with Mr Tancock and his wife about an hour and a half, and was very cheerful in his conversation. He slept in the same room with a young man, named John Fletcher, a compositor, who went to bed about half an hour after MR WIDGER. They conversed some time, chiefly about the Derby races, at which MR WIDGER said he had been present; but in reply to an observation of Mr Tancock's in the previous part of the evening said he did not do anything in the way of betting. At half-past four o'clock the next morning Fletcher was awoke by hearing a noise like the dropping of water on the floor, and on looking towards MR WIDGER'S bed he was horrified at seeing the deceased seated on the side of it, while the blood was gushing forth from a dreadful gash in the throat. Fletcher immediately raised an alarm, and left the room to call Mr Tancock. On his return the unhappy man was lying on the floor in the last throes of death. Mr Webb, surgeon, was instantly fetched by Tancock, but life was extinct long before he arrived. By the side of the suicide was found a common pocket knife with two blades: the smaller or the penknife was open, and it was evidently with this weapon the rash act had been committed; the knife being clotted with blood. The deceased was said to have been quite sober when he went to Mr Tancock's, and he only drank two glasses of beer before he went to bed. From the evidence given by two brothers of the deceased – WILLIAM and THOMAS WIDDGER – who are farmers of Ashburton, it transpired that the deceased was a bachelor, and about forty-seven years of age. He was until within the last few years a farmer, and lived at Sigford Farm, Elphington, near Ashburton. Four years since he retired from business. About the middle of May he left his brother WILLIAM'S house to go to London to see the Exhibition; and on Wednesday went to Epsom races: he had witnessed the Derby races for the past three years. On previous occasions he is known to have won several pounds by betting; what he has done this year is a mystery. When about eight years old the deceased was severely kicked by a horse on his temples, from the effects of which he had occasionally suffered severely, especially after having drunk too freely. At such times he would commit strange acts and fits of despondency would ensue. After a careful summing up, the Jury returned a verdict that the deceased had committed suicide while in a state of Temporary Insanity.
Wednesday 18 June 1862, Issue 5017 – Gale Document No. Y3200702970
CREDITON – On Thursday a man named WILLIAM PLYMSELL, of Tedburn St. Mary, hung himself to an apple tree. Mr R. R. Crosse held an Inquest on the body the next day, when the Jury returned a verdict to the effect that the deceased committed suicide whilst labouring under Temporary Insanity.
Wednesday 25 June 1862, Issue 5018 – Gale Document No. Y3200702997
FATAL ACCIDENT – On Friday evening an accident, which we regret to state terminated fatally, occurred to MR W. CHEESEWORTH, schoolmaster, &c., of Dunsford. MR CHEESEWORTH was getting into a waggon belonging to Mr F. Hellier, when his foot slipped and he fell. The horses, which were proceeding at the time, were pulled up almost instantly; but one of the wheels had passed over the body of the unfortunate man. Notwithstanding every attention paid him he died from the injuries received. The Coroner for the district, R. R. Crosse, Esq., held an Inquest on the body on Monday, when a verdict of "Accidental death" was returned.
Wednesday 25 June 1862, Issue 5018 – Gale Document No. Y3200703011
INQUESTS IN EXETER - Mr H. W. Hooper held an Inquest on Thursday at the Fireman's Arms, West-street, upon the body of BETTY KNIGHT. Deceased was generally known by the name of "Old Betty," and was much addicted to drinking. She lodged with a Mrs Coker, in Rack-street. Deceased returned to her lodgings a week since very much intoxicated, and some boys pushed her over the steps leading to her house. She was put to bed, but was unable to get up afterwards. Mr Cumming, surgeon, attended the old woman, and that gentleman attributed death to natural decay, accelerated by intemperate habits. Verdict accordingly.
The City Coroner (Mr H. W. Hooper) held an Inquest at the Golden Lion Inn, Newtown, on Thursday, upon the body of ELIZABETH KNOTT, aged fifty. Deceased went to live at the house of Mrs Pyle, Clifton-road, on the preceding Tuesday. She was taken ill soon afterwards, but she rallied. At four the next morning MRS KNOTT was again taken ill, which necessitated the attendance of Mr Perkins. Stimulants were administered, but she died soon after noon on Wednesday. Mr Perkins considered that the deceased died from disease of the heart, brought on by too much exertion, and the Jury found a verdict accordingly.
Mr H. W. Hooper held an Inquisition on Friday and Saturday at the Blue Boar Inn, in this city, upon the body of JOHN TANCOCK, a broom maker, aged 49. All sorts of exaggerated statements have been rife in connection with this case, and the misrepresentations have been greedily seized upon by sensation paragraphists. The facts disclosed at the Inquest certainly open a new scene in the domestic drama; but they do not justify anything like the wild stories which have appeared in some of our contemporaries. A man named Wills – one of Exon's "characters," by reason of his calling out in the streets in a somewhat musical tone of voice "any old chairs to men?" – married some thirteen years since: the husband is now 74 and his wife 43 years of age. The deceased is a nephew of the wife's. In August last the woman left her husband, and, christening herself MRS TANCOCK, went to live in Shearman's Court as the wife of the deceased. They lived there together for months; and during that period the husband proper took a room in a house in the same court. The separation was not a barrier to all acquaintanceship between Wills and his wife, for the woman attended upon both me. TANCOCK at last ran away; and then the woman reassumed her marital name, and went and lived with her husband. Leaving Shearman's Court they took a room over Giles's cider shop in Rack-street. They inhabited this room for some weeks, when they took another room in the same house. TANCOCK returned, and the second room was occupied by him till the night of the 27th of May, when he seems to have incurred Mrs Wills's displeasure because he did not pay her any money for his lodgings on the preceding Saturday night; and when he returned on the evening of the 27th of May he found the door of his room locked. Mrs Wills and her husband were then drinking at Giles's. TANCOCK asked the woman for the key: she refused it, and he went up and burst in the door. Mrs Wills followed, and she and TANCOCK appear to have exchanged something more than words. TANCOCK became very violent, and the woman rushed down for her husband, who did not then go up. Thomas Selley, a mason, and John Langabeer, a militiaman, of Thorverton, were at Giles's, and these two men were induced by the woman to go up stairs. They knocked at a door, and on opening it TANCOCK declared that he would cleave down any man that approached him. Langabeer took up the handle of a firepan, and striking TANCOCK on the arm with it TANCOCK dropped the hatchet, which he held in a menacing attitude, and went to the window and shouted "murder." The two men then descended to the drinking room, and quietness prevailed. As soon as the woman somewhat recovered she renewed the altercation with TANCOCK, but finding herself worsted she again went down stairs for her husband. The old man then went up, and he and TANCOCK were soon in hot antagonism. The woman again rushed down stairs saying, "For God's sake come up stairs for JOHN is killing Wills." Then Giles and Langabeer went up and found TANCOCK lying on Wills, Blood was flowing from the heads of the two men. Giles exclaimed to TANCOCK, "Why, you blackguard, you are going to kill the poor old man." TANCOCK made no reply. Giles and Langabeer then separated the two men, and TANCOCK quickly left the house. Wills was insensible, and he was immediately removed to the Hospital. Soon after his admission TANCOCK presented himself to be admitted a patient: he was then intoxicated and blood was flowing from wounds in his head. Wills was considered to be in a very dangerous state; but he soon recovered. TANCOCK had two scalp wounds, and two cuts of a smaller degree at the posterior of the head: he likewise appeared to have had a blow on the right shoulder. The patient went on very well for a fortnight after his admission, when a fever of a low type set in, and he died on Thursday morning. Mr John Edye and Mr C. H. Allfrey made a post mortem examination of the body, and according to the testimony of these gentlemen TANCOCK died from pyoemia, which might or might not have resulted from the injuries. Mr Edye stated that peoemiac fever was produced from the most trivial causes – even a mere scratch would produce it. The medical gentlemen could not discover anything of the slightest degree that would justify them in asserting that death was caused by the wounds inflicted on the head of the deceased; and it was stated that when TANCOCK was asked how he got into the broil he replied, "You want to know too much." The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased died from "pyoemia," and this verdict acquits Wills of being implicated in the death of TANCOCK. The Inquiry occupied three hours on Saturday; and it was, perhaps, owing to the protracted investigation that one of the Jurymen was obliged to have recourse to "Nature's sweet restorer – balmy sleep." The somnolent Juryman must have keenly felt the responsibly of his office.
Wednesday 2 July 1862, Issue 5019 – Gale Document No. Y3200703060
PLYMOUTH – Love And Suicide. – A man, named JAMES BLEW, twenty-four years of age, committed suicide by poisoning himself, on Wednesday last. The deceased was a store-keeper at Messrs. Serpell and Dawe's biscuit factory, Commercial Wharf; and he had formerly been in the East India Company's service, where he had lost one of his legs. On Tuesday, the 17th, the day on which the memorial stone of the Devonport, Stonehouse, and Cornwall Hospital was erected, the deceased met a young woman, named MARY ANN AMELIA COLEMAN, in one of the omnibuses running between Plymouth and Devonport. Notwithstanding that he had never seen the girl before he seems to have fallen desperately and hopelessly in love with her. He accosted her; and wished her to accompany him to an entertainment in the evening; she accepted, and went to hear the Opera Troupe. On their homeward journey deceased (who was a widower, having lost his wife a few months previously), made the girl an offer of marriage, but she declined the honour which her enslaved admirer was so desirous of conferring on her. On the refusal he said there was but one alternative for him – if she did not become his wife he would destroy himself. At the same time he produced some phial bottles from his pocket, one of which was labelled "laudanum"; this bottle COLEMAN took away from him. Eventually he said he would give her a week to reconsider her determination. After this they appear to have met on two or three occasions, and some notes passed between them. At one interview she told him that if he would go to Liverpool as he had expressed his intention of doing, and correspond with her for six months she would at the end of that time become his wife. He then left her, saying he should go to Liverpool the next morning. This was a week before his death. Whether he doubted the promise of COLEMAN or not is not certain, but he did not go to Liverpool; the girl saw him on the Thursday and Tuesday following; but they had no further conversation. On Tuesday evening he lodged at Mrs Hill's, in Adelaide-road, and before going to bed wrote two letters. The next morning he was very ill and sick. About ten o'clock he was seen proceeding towards a field at Pennycomequick, and here at half-past two in the afternoon, Henry Strowbridge and a lad named Skinner found the body of the deceased quite dead. Near his body was found a bottle with the word "poison" marked on it. On him were found two letters; one addressed to his father-in-law, and another to his sweetheart, MISS COLEMAN. In the latter of these he says he was led to believe his "dearly beloved Amelia would never become his, and for that reason he was certain he should never be happy more." The concluding words are as follow: "Up goes the bottle with a shivering hand; but with real earnest. Good bye, for ever; good bye." A post mortem examination of the body was made by Mr William Paul Swain, M.R.C.S., on Thursday afternoon, and at the Inquest held on the body on Friday, before A. B. Bone, Esq., Coroner, he stated his belief that the deceased had died from poison, in the form of oil of almonds. The Coroner having summed up, the Jury returned a verdict of Felo de Se, accompanied with a recommendation to chemists and others to be more careful to whom they sold such poisons.
Wednesday 9 July 1862, Issue 5020 – Gale Document No. Y3200703077
EXETER – Sudden Death. - An Inquest was held at the Honiton Inn, Paris-street, on Wednesday, before H. D. Barton, Esq., Deputy Coroner, on the body of an old man named THOMAS MORRISH. William Ellis, landlord of the Honiton Inn, said deceased was his father-in-law, and was about seventy-two years of age, and on Tuesday last he appeared to him to be in his usual health. On the evening of that day deceased went an errand for him and returned about eight o'clock. He went into the kitchen, sat down in a chair, and smoked his pipe. About half-past nine witness heard the deceased apparently choking. He immediately untied his neckcloth, but he expired almost directly. Mr Kempe, surgeon, said he had known deceased for a great many years; for the last six months he had failed very much. He should attribute death to disease of the heart. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 23 July 1862, Issue 5022 – Gale Document No. Y3200703144
FATAL ACCIDENT – On the 11th instant a man, named PETER BEER, a labourer, in the employ of Mr E. Batten, farmer, of Newton St. Cyres, was kicked by a horse in the pit of the stomach. He went home and a doctor was sent for; the following day he was removed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where he died the next day. The house surgeon (Mr Allfrey), by the direction of the Coroner, made a post mortem examination of the body, and found death to have resulted from the kick; but there were no external marks. An Inquest was held, and a verdict of "Accidental Death" returned.
Wednesday 30 July 1862, Issue 5023 – Gale Document No. Y3200703187
ALLEGED MEDICAL NEGLECT - On Thursday an Inquest was opened at the Honiton Inn, Paris-street, in this city, before the City Coroner, H. W. Hooper, Esq., on the body of CAROLINE BRAY, a single woman, thirty-two years of age, who died the preceding Tuesday. The deceased it appeared was the daughter of PRISCILLA STONEMAN, by a former marriage, and resided of late with her mother in Martin's Cottages, Paris-street. Some time since she had caught a chill, which resulted in a weakness of the right hip, and necessitated her giving up her occupation as a domestic servant. On Sunday evening deceased, who was enceinte, was very sick and vomited, which continued during the night. She complained of her illness during Monday, and in the evening Mrs Hooper, a midwife, who had been previously engaged, was called in; and about midnight she was seized with a fit and was very ill. The nurse did not consider the deceased was suffering from labour-pains, and advised a doctor's being fetched. The mother accordingly went in quest of a surgeon, and as a great deal of talk has arisen in connection with the conduct of certain medical men we give the woman's evidence in full. The witness said she first went to Mr Hunt, surgeon, of St Sidwell. Mrs Hunt answered her at the door. Witness asked if Mr Hunt was at home, and she replied, "No, what do you want of him?" She further said that he was at Mr Samuel Perkins's, which was close by. Witness then left and went to Mr Perkins's. He came to the door, and in answer to a question from her, he said that Mr Hunt was there, and asked what she wanted of him. She replied that her daughter was very ill. He then invited her in and gave her a seat, telling her that Mr Hunt would be down directly. Mr Hunt did come down, and said, "What's the matter?" and she replied that her daughter was very ill, and was in the family way. He then said, "I can't come to you; it is not my case; you must get a parish doctor. Who has she spoken to?" Witness replied, "Mrs Hooper, the midwife," and he said, "Oh! I suppose Mrs Hooper scruples to get up." Witness replied in the negative, and told him that it was not labour, but an attack of the bile. He said, "Well, I can't go to her, it's not my case; you must get a parish doctor." Witness enquired if it was any difference, if she paid him, whether it was a parish doctor or not, and he said, "It does not matter; you must go and get a parish doctor." Witness then went home, and repeated the conversation to Mrs Hooper, who was there, adding that she would pay him anything if he had come, even if she had sold her bed. Deceased was better then, and Mrs Hooper returned home, and witness fetched Mrs Shapland, of Summerland-street. At four o'clock witness went to Mr Arthur Cumming, of Southernhay, he having attended her, about eighteen months since, for a swelling in the leg as one of the surgeons of the Dispensary. He called out of the window to her. She asked him to go and see her daughter, and he said "Who are you?" She told him her name and residence, and he said, "My good woman, you must fetch the parish doctor; I can't come." She had never paid him for his attendance. She did not tell Mr Cumming what was the matter with her daughter. She said, "Parish doctor!" and he said, "Yes, Mr Perkins, in South-street." She then left, and went on to Mr Perkins's, it being then just after four o'clock. She rang the bell four times, and stood there about a quarter of an hour, but she got no answer, and returned home, when she found the deceased in a fit, Mrs Shapland being with her. Witness remained with her until nearly six o'clock, the deceased remaining in the same state. Mrs Shapland told her that she must fetch a doctor, or she would not be living long, and she again went to Mr Hunt's. She saw the servant, who went to her master's room, and returned, saying that Mr Hunt said he could not come, and he had told her so the night before. Witness asked who she was to get, as no one would come, and the servant said, "Master says you must get the parish doctor, Mr Perkins, in South-street." Witness went again to his house, and rang three times, when Mr Perkins opened the window, and on being told who she was, he told her to wait, and he would be down directly. He did come down, and she told him that she was there at four o'clock, when he said that he did not hear her, nor did he think one of his servant shad. She explained what the matter was, and told him that her daughter was in the family-way. She said she had been to Mr Hunt and Mr Cumming, both of whom had told her to go to him. Mr Perkins asked her the particulars, which she told him, and he made up a powder, which was to be given immediately, as it would soothe the fits, and a bottle of mixture, three table-spoonfuls to be given directly after the powder, and repeat it every two hours afterwards. He further said that she was to put her feet into warm water and mustard up to the ankles, if possible, directing her to let him know again at nine o'clock how she was, when he would come and see her. Witness gave her the powder and mixture, as directed, and it remained on her stomach and allayed the sickness. At nine o'clock witness sent Mr Lewis's boy to Mr Perkins to say that she was very ill, and request him to come immediately, as he might not see her alive. He did not come, however, until between two and three o'clock in the afternoon, the deceased having died at ten minutes past twelve. When he came Mrs Shapland said, "Oh, sir, you are too late," and he went upstairs to look at the body. When he came down stairs he said, "I shall take this medicine home with me," comforted her, and said if the nurse would come down to his house about five o'clock he would give her the certificate. The certificate was given and carried to Mr Norton, the registrar. Mr Perkins had never seen the deceased.
Mr Rickard, a Juror, asked the Coroner if it was usual to remove the medicine bottle?
THE CORONER replied that Mr Rickard was as good a judge of that as he could be. In reply to the Foreman, the witness said that she did not offer to pay Mr Perkins, but after the death he said he should not charge anything.
Another JUROR observed that it was a very serious case; and for a woman to be left for forty hours without medicine reflected great discredit on one, of not all three of the medical men.
THE CORONER said that although a certificate was given he thought it was a proper case for Enquiry.
THE JUROR: I should think it was; if it was not I should like to know what was.
In reply to another JUROR, the witness said that she did not ask Mr Perkins why he took away the medicine because she was so excited, and she did not think anything of it until a lady – Miss Stoneman, a niece of Capt. Tanner – advised her to report the matter to the Coroner.
Mrs Hooper and Mrs Shapland gave corroborative testimony of some points of Mrs Stoneman's evidence; and the certificate of the death was then produced signed by Mr John Perkins, who certified that he attended the deceased, and saw her on the 22nd July, and that the cause of her death was fits.
Several of the Jurors expressed a desire to have a post mortem examination made by an independent medical man – a suggestion with which the Coroner concurred.
Mr John Perkins was then sworn. He said he did not know the deceased. Just before seven o'clock on Tuesday morning he was called by the deceased's mother. She rang the bell, and after answering it he came down stairs and let her in. She told him that her child had had some fits, and was very sick with pains in her head. She did not state that she was in the family-way; he had not the lest idea of it until after she was dead. From the answers to the questions which he put he told her that he believed she was suffering from indigestion and some biliary obstruction. He also told her to put her feet in hot water. He gave her a powder composed of three grains of calomel, a small quantity of soda, and a little bicarbonate of potassa, which he requested might be given directly mixed in a little sugar and water and a spoon.
By a JUROR – He might have given the same if he had known she was in the family-way.
Cross-examined – He also gave her a mixture which was composed of magnesia, briar bonate of potassa, a small quantity of sulphate of magnesia, and a little peppermint water. He requested her to give her the medicine every two or three hours, and let him know how she was at nine o'clock. About that time he had a message to say she was just the same; and he requested that she would go on with the medicine, and he would see her as soon as he could. He looked upon it as a case of biliary obstruction, which would yield as soon as the medicine would operate. He then heard for the first time that she was in the family-way; and he also learnt from the mother that the deceased had been suffering great anxiety of mind from the desertion of the young man who was the father of the child. He said he had done all he could for her and he could not see that he could alter his treatment. He told the mother he should make no charge, and as regarded the bottle of medicine, knowing it would be very useful to him in his rounds during the day, he took it away, thinking that as he had given her attendance for nothing he might as well have it. He could not tell if he was asked for a certificate, but he said he would give her one, which he did.
By a JUROR. It was customary to send medicines without seeing the patient.
THE CORONER said it was a very common practice, but whether it was proper or not was another thing.
Mr Perkins to JURORS: If a medical man had been called in he did not think her life could have been spared. All the medicine was used in his rounds the same day; there was no mistake about the mixing of it.
THE CORONER asked the Jury if they thought there was sufficient evidence to come to a decision then, or if they wished to adjourn for the purpose of having a post mortem examination. He also added that he highly condemned the common practice adopted by medical men of giving a certificate of death without having previously treated the deceased.
Mr Perkins said the medical profession were under the impression that they must give a certificate of some sort.
THE CORONER: Then I tell you, you are wrong. I don't care what the medical profession think; but I tell you it is not necessary.
The Jury then unanimously agreed that a post mortem examination was necessary, and that it should be conducted by a medical man altogether independent of those who had been named during the Inquiry.
The Inquiry was resumed on Friday evening; but in consequence of the unavoidable absence of Dr Budd, to whom the Coroner had entrusted the post mortem examination, it was adjourned until the next day.
The Inquest on the body of CAROLIEN BRAY was resumed on Saturday, at the Honiton Inn, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, after a post mortem examination.
John Grafton, a lad in the employ of Mr Lewis, said: On Tuesday morning last the mother of deceased sent him to Mr Perkins, as he was going out Mr Lewis told him to tell Mr Perkins that if he did not come directly he would not see her alive. This was about nine. He went to Mr Perkins' house and saw the servant. She requested him to deliver the message to Mr Perkins himself. He went in, saw Mr Perkins, and told him what he had been desired. Mr Perkins said, "Oh!" and went inside.
The Coroner referred to Mr Perkins' evidence to the effect that the messenger came and said deceased was just the same, and that he told him the medicine was to be continued, and that he would call as soon as possible.
This the witness now positively denied, adding that he said "Oh!" went inside, and witness left.
Dr Budd said: According to the instructions of the Coroner he had made a post mortem examination of the body of the deceased. He observed no marks of violence. The cause of death was revealed with great distinctness; on opening the head he found the cause of death to be free from all doubt. There was a large effusion of blood on the surface of the left hemisphere of the brain. He examined the whole of the body, and found no trace of any other disease. The appearance of the brain was sufficient to shew the cause of death, and quite in accordance with the symptoms she had given in the last hour of her illness. The viscera were all healthy. Deceased was about seven months advanced in pregnancy, and everything appeared in a very natural condition. The haemorrhage in the surface of the brain would account for the convulsions. Had it occurred in the central portion of the brain it would have been attended by paralysis and coma. He considered the cause of death to have been cerribeal apoplexy, caused by haemorrhage.
Mr Shaw: Would timely assistance have saved her life.
Dr Budd: Had application been made before convulsions set in assistance might have been useful, but when convulsions took place he thought hem sympathetic with the effusion of blood on the brain. He considered when Mr Perkins was sent for irresponsible mischief had been done.
Mr Shaw: But Mr Hunt was sent for on the Monday and did not go.
Dr Budd said he thought even then irresponsible mischief had been done.
By Mr Knowsley. - The medicine given was a very proper one for a biliary attack and could have done no harm under any circumstances. Mental anxiety would predispose the brain to haemorrhage. He believed convulsions to be the effect of the haemorrhage, and that when convulsions set in the pending irresponsible mischief had been done.
THE CORONER said he thought the evidence they had heard would answer all the ends of justice, but he felt bound to say that since he had held the office of Coroner a more painful case never came under his investigation. He thought from the first that this was a matter for serious Enquiry, and he felt sure that the Jury would agree with him that he was not wrong in so thinking. He then glanced at the details f the case, in reference to the conduct of the medical men, and repeated that this, to his mind, was a most painful case. Referring to the three medical gentlemen, he felt bound to say that the case of Mr Perkins was different from that of the others in this respect. He would have been the party legally bound to attend to this woman if it had been a pauper case, and to have paid the same attention as if he had been paid a large fee for going. There was a discrepancy between the boy's evidence and that of Mr Perkins, and the latter distinctly denied that he was told the woman was in the family-way, but whether Mrs Stoneman did or did not it was perfectly clear that deceased was labouring under convulsions and he ought to know that such a state was attended with considerable danger. He gave Mrs Stoneman some medicine for deceased, and was called on the following morning at nine, but denies the statement of the boy that he told him to come at once if he wanted to see her alive. At twelve o'clock an end was put to the poor woman's sufferings by death. Two hours afterwards he went to the house, and then it was he said he should not make any charge considering the trials Mrs Stoneman had been put to. Then, an extraordinary thing to do, he took away the bottle of medicine he had given her, and actually granted a certificate that the cause of death was fits. They had had a lengthened Enquiry, and the Jury thought with him that a post mortem examination was very desirable. He, therefore, entrusted the task to a gentleman (Dr Budd) in whose talents and skill he had the highest confidence – (hear, hear) – and from him they had now learnt the cause of death; and now came the great question, whether, if assistance had been rendered at the time it was applied for by one or other of those gentlemen, either in a private or public capacity, the life of the poor woman might have been saved. He was here bound to tell them that there was no legal obligation on any medical gentleman to attend a person, except it was a poor person in his own parish. – (A JURYMAN: Then there ought). - As he had said there was no legal obligation on any gentleman to attend a person under such circumstances, and no doubt the younger branches of the medical profession ere out in cases where the party might have waited until the morning without danger. But where young men set forth in life with a view of rising in their profession they ought not to mind any amount of inconvenience with that object. He (The Coroner) thought that while there was no legal obligation on gentlemen to attend under such circumstances on our poorer brethren, yet there was a moral obligation which ought not to be disregarded. )(Hear, hear) – And he could only say if that moral obligation was disregarded by medical men, the public, he felt sure, would be careful how they applied to any such a person. This kind of neglect would find its own level, for the public would apply to those whose kindness was most evinced to the poor. He was sorry that in the city of Exeter there had been such a refusal as that given by the three gentlemen in question. Mr Hunt was very much to blame, for if he had gone it would have been far better, and although, according to Dr Budd's opinion, he would not have been in time to save life, yet it would have shown the world that he had done what he ought to have done.
A JURYMAN: And he was not in bed at the time.
THE CORONER said it did seem different with regard to Mr Cumming. He was asked, and did not, thinking it was a poor case, not in his district, and that she should go to the proper doctor. Mr Perkins, in his (the Coroner's) opinion, had been highly culpable. He (the Coroner) had a very high opinion of Mr Perkins' talents, as a medical man, and had seen cases in which he had exercised very considerable judgment, and when great good had resulted from his treatment, but it was his (the Coroner's) bounden duty, whether in his private capacity as surgeon, or his public capacity as one of the surgeons of the poor, to have gone to the woman at the time she was in convulsions. Having made these observations he would now make an observation or two on the practice of the medical profession, or rather that which was not the practice, for he was glad to have been so assured by a highly-respectable practitioner, of giving medical certificates of the cause of death without having attended the patient during lifetime. If this was considered for a moment, the danger of such a course would be evident. He need not tell the Jury that it would only be for a medical man of no character to enter into collusion with another party, and there would be no Inquiry, however necessary. He trusted it would be distinctly understood that practice would not be allowed to continue, and he should think it his duty to give notice to each of the registrars, that where a party had not been seen during life, such certificate will not be accepted, and that enquiries be made to that effect, and whenever such a certificate was tendered, he should consider it a proper case for investigation. He repeated that he did not think the medical men at all figured in the way which was to their credit.
The Court was then cleared, and the Jury, after a consultation which lasted about a quarter of an hour, returned the following verdict:- "That the deceased died from cerebral apoplexy; but the Jury cannot separate without expressing their great disapprobation of the want of sympathy and kindness of feeling on the part of the three surgeons referred to, more especially Mr Hunt and Mr John Steele Perkins, in refusing and neglecting to attend the deceased when requested to do so; and the Jury express a hope that in future the request of the Coroner will be attended to by the medical profession, and that no certificate of the cause of death will be given where the party has not been seen and attended by the medical man during life."
Wednesday 30 July 1862, Issue 5023 – Gale Document No. Y3200703176
EXETER – Fatal Accident. - An Inquest was held on Thursday afternoon, at the Valiant Soldier, Magdalen-street, before the City Coroner, on the body of SIDNEY FRANK KELLEY, aged one year and eight months, the son of a dairyman, residing in Bartholomew-street.. On the previous afternoon the father of the child had taken a milk-pan of hot water from the stove and had placed it on the ground, and whilst the child was running backwards "playing horses," the poor little fellow suddenly fell back into the pan. The father ran over and extricated it as soon as possible, taking off the clothes and rubbing it over with oil, but the injuries were so severe that he removed it to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where it lingered until the next morning, when it died. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 6 August 1862, Issue 5024 – Gale Document No. Y3200703206
INQUEST – An Inquest was held at the Blue Boar Inn, Magdalen-street, on Thursday, on the body of JAS. FURSMAN, fifty-eight years of age, who died from injuries he had received. It appears that the deceased was at work for Mr Jas. Reed, of Christow, on Tuesday week, trimming some hedges. A boy named Samuel Avery, also working for Mr Reed, passed where deceased was at work, and he told him to go back to his master's for a pick. On the boy returning he saw deceased lying against the hedge, with blood flowing from his ear. He was taken home, and afterwards to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where he died on Wednesday morning. At the request of the Coroner a post mortem examination was made of the body by Mr Huxley, the house-surgeon at the Devon and Exeter Hospital, and he found a contusion of the bone of the head; also a severe laceration of the brain. He considered the injuries to the head to be the cause of death. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly, but said that by what means they were caused there was no evidence to show. Mr Sheean said the Jury were very much indebted to the Coroner for ordering a post mortem examination of the body to be made, thus saving them the trouble of attending again. The city was also indebted to him for the way in which he had conducted his onerous duties lately. The Coroner said he was ready to do his duty at any time. Latterly his duties had been very heavy – very serious cases having come before him; but he had endeavoured to act fairly and justly towards all parties.
Wednesday 6 August 1862, Issue 5024 – Gale Document No. Y3200703220
TORRINGTON – J. H. Toller, Esq., Coroner, held an Inquest in this town on Wednesday, upon the body of the infant female child of ELIZABETH RIDGEWAY, single woman, which was found dead at its mother's breast, on the same morning. The medical attendant having given his opinion that death was caused by imperfect action of the heart, the Jury gave a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 13 August 1862, Issue 5025 – Gale Document No. Y3200703241
TEIGNMOUTH – A MR RICHARD HUDSON, eighty-one years of age, who, with his family, had just come to this watering-place for a month, committed suicide on Sunday morning by hanging himself. An Inquest was held yesterday, and a verdict returned that deceased was at the time in an unsound state of mind.
FATAL ACCIDENT – The accident which we last week reported as having happened to a man, named KNILL, terminated fatally in the Devon and Exeter Hospital on Monday. An Inquest on the body was held at the Topsham Inn yesterday morning , before H. W. Hooper, Esq., the City Coroner, and a respectable Jury. From the evidence adduced it appeared that the deceased, WM. KNILL, was by trade a boot and shoe maker, but had for the past twelve years worked as an auctioneer's porter. On Monday, the 4th instant, he went to the late Dr Collyns's, Farringdon, to pack some furniture for Messrs Ware and Son, builders, of this city. The furniture was conveyed in one of Messrs. Strong's wagons, and KNILL accompanied the waggoner (Wilkinson) homewards. The men occasionally rode, but deceased walked from St Mary's Clyst to Heavitree. After they had passed through the turnpike-gage at the latter place KNILL, who had been walking behind, seems to have endeavoured while the waggon was in motion, to get on the shaft on the off side. He was rather the worse for liquor, and in getting up he overbalanced himself and fell under the wheels, which passed over his left leg. Wilkinson, who was walking on the near side, saw nothing of the accident, his attention being called to it by some ladies passing. The unfortunate man was conveyed to the hospital immediately, where a consultation of the surgeons took place, and it was deemed necessary to amputate the leg, which had sustained a compound fracture. The operation was performed by Mr Kempe the same night, and on the two days following he appeared to be progressing favourably. Gangrene, however, supervened, and he died on Monday. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 13 August 1862, Issue 5025 – Gale Document No. Y3200703256
CREDITON – We stated last week that a mason, named JOHN STEVENS, had committed suicide on the preceding Sunday evening. Mr Crosse held an Inquest upon the body on Wednesday, when the Jury returned a verdict that the deceased hanged himself whilst in an unsound state of mind.
Wednesday 27 August 1862, Issue 5027 – Gale Document No. Y3200703305
EXETER – The body of a man named CHASE was found in the river Exe on Friday, just below the Quay. Deceased had been working at the Trew's Weir Paper Mills the previous day, and is supposed to have fallen over the bank between the mills and the Quay. An Inquest was held at the Port Royal Inn on Saturday, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., when a verdict of "Found Drowned" was returned.
DEATH IN A TALLET. – An Inquest was held at the Bull Inn, Goldsmith-street, on Wednesday evening, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of JOHN BURRIDGE, who met with his death under the following circumstances:- The deceased had been lodging with a porter, named Samuel Hexter, and was a single man. He was about fifty years of age, and did odd jobs for butchers and others. He had part of a room with Hexter, and paid him 6d. per week. He was addicted to drinking, and subject to fits very frequently. About half-past seven on the previous evening he was seen by Wm. Duckham, ostler to Mr Gover, in the taproom of the Bull, who asked what sort of a day he had had. He replied that he had done very little, and was at that time sober. On the following morning Duckham went to the hayloft, about half-past twelve, where he found BURRIDGE dead. He was lying on his left side, as if in bed, the shoes, waistcoat, and cap off. Mr Warren was sent for, and now gave evidence that deceased died from suffocation, probably while in a fit. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 27 August 1862, Issue 5027 – Gale Document No. Y3200703318
BIDEFORD – A few days since some children were playing together at a farm-house in the parish of Littleham, when a boy, aged 16, named John Middleton, took down a loaded gun and asked who he should shoot. One of the children pointed to a little girl, five years of age, named SARAH ANN GLOYNE, the daughter of the gardener at Orleigh Court. Middleton discharged the gun, the contents entered her mouth, and she died after a few hours' suffering. The boy did not know that the gun was loaded; and at an Inquest held on Thursday the Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 3 September 1862, Issue 5028 – Gale Document No. Y3200703340
EXETER – Sudden Death. – An Inquest was held at the Half Moon Hotel, on Monday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., City Coroner, on the body of JOHN CHARLES STEPHENS, a man in the prime of life, who suddenly dropped down dead near Bury Meadow on the previous evening. Mr Joseph Harding, spirit merchant, said he was standing near St. David's Church on Sunday evening, about half-past seven, when he saw a man stagger a few paces from Bury Meadow gates and then fall heavily against the stone work of the hedge. He at first thought the man was drunk, but seeing two or three supporting his head he went over and found deceased insensible. He became impressed with the idea that the man was dying and sent his nephew for Mr Caird and another messenger for Mr Webb, but in the meantime Mr Warren came up. The deceased was quite insensible. He died about ten minutes after he was taken. Mr Warren was of opinion that deceased's death was occasioned by a fit of apoplexy. He had not the appearance of a man labouring under disease of any kind. Deceased was an assistant at the shop of Messrs. Green and Bennett, and a single man, residing in the house. He had been in that establishment about six months, and previous to that had been in a shop in Edinburgh; his mother resides at Southampton. He took dinner and tea with the other assistants and left the house in his usual health. He has been heard to express himself that he never knew what a day's illness was. The Jury returned a verdict that deceased died of a fit of apoplexy.
Wednesday 3 September 1862, Issue 5028 – Gale Document No. Y3200703354
BARNSTAPLE – CHRISTOPHER SELDON, who was in the employ of Mr Thomas Brailey, of Bishopstawton, met with severe injuries by his leg becoming entangled in a thrashing-machine. The poor fellow lived four days after his admission into the North Devon Infirmary. The Coroner's Inquest on Wednesday resulted in a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 17 September 1862, Issue 5030 – Gale Document No. Y3200703422
PLYMOUTH. - A very melancholy case of sudden death took place in the neighbourhood of Pennycomequick late on Saturday night or early on Sunday morning. About six o'clock on Sunday morning a dairyman named Waycott – who had business in an adjoining field – found the body of a man near the railway bridge, on the Cornish line, which crosses the road, familiarly known as Deadlake-lane. The body, which presented a shocking spectacle, in consequence of the head and upper part of the body being covered in blood, was lying some fifteen or twenty feet from the bridge across the footway. The police were at once acquainted with the fact, and the body was removed to an inn, where it was recognised as that of MR WILLIAM NORMAN, an artist, and a gentleman well-known in the three towns. At first it was pretty generally believed that he had been murdered, but on enquiry it was ascertained that somewhere about eleven o'clock on Saturday night he called at the Globe Tap, and asked for something to drink. The person in charge of the bar, seeing that he had already taken more than enough, refused to serve him with anything, and strongly advised him to go home. He then left, but it is stated that he afterwards had more drink at a beerhouse in York-street. The supposition is that he wandered towards his home, Keppel-place, Stoke, and that near midnight he arrived at the railway bridge in question. Whether he was here seized with a fit, or from exhaustion produced by excessive drinking, he fell against the rough hewn stones of the bridge, and cut his head just behind the ear. The wound must have bled very freely. Notwithstanding this accident, he by some means dragged himself to the spot where his body was found. Here he must have been exposed to the heavy rain that fell during the morning, and perhaps this exposure hastened his death. At the inquest held on Monday, the Jury returned an Open Verdict that the deceased was found dead in the public road near Pennycomequick: that he died from haemorrhage caused by a wound in his head, but that how or by what means such wound was caused there was no evidence to shew.
Wednesday 24 September 1862, Issue 5031 – Gale Document No. Y3200703439
EXETER - Sudden Death. – An Inquest was held on Monday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, at the Windsor Castle Inn, on the body of ELIZA EDWARDS, a single woman, about sixty-three years of age. Deceased lived in the house of a mason, named Smith, at Alma-place, Summerland-street, and on Sunday morning he looked into her room and saw her lying dead on the floor. A diseased heart was the cause of death. Verdict accordingly.
DEATH FROM DROWNING – On Saturday afternoon a young man named WILLIAM GALE, a clerk at Messrs. Paul and James', solicitors, of this city, left home about four o'clock for a walk. He appears to have proceeded to Double Locks, where he played a game or two at skittles, and drank three or four glasses of whisky. He left about eight o'clock in the evening, and nothing further was heard or seen of him until yesterday morning. His walking-stick, however, was found in a boat opposite the Port Royal Inn, just below the Quay, and this led to the belief that the unfortunate man had been drowned. This supposition turned out to be only too true; for after fruitless search during Sunday and Monday his body was found in the river on Tuesday morning near the junction of the river and canal. The deceased, who was a married man and resided in St. Leonard, is supposed to have lost his life in attempting to cross the river in one of the boats which was left on the opposite side. An Inquest will be held this day at the Port Royal Inn.
Wednesday 24 September 1862, Issue 5031 – Gale Document No. Y3200703456
SEATON – An Inquest was held on Wednesday at the Pole's Arms Inn, before S. M. Cox, Esq., County Coroner, on the body of MISS MELISSA ELIZABETH VOULES, aged sixty. The deceased, who has recently complained of weakness and depression of spirits, was discovered on the previous Monday suspended from the bed-post by a rope round her neck. She had lately been living with her brother, the REV. T. P. VOULES, at Seaton. The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased committed suicide while in a state of Temporary Insanity.
Wednesday 1 October 1862, Issue 5032 – Gale Document No. Y3200703475
The Inquest on Wednesday held on the body of the young man, WILLIAM GALE, who was drowned in the Exe, at the junction of the river with the Quay, as reported in our last, resulted in a verdict of "Found Drowned;" the Coroner, R. R. Crosse, Esq., again expressing his surprise that the place where the unfortunate man must have fallen in should still be left in its present dangerous state, four or five persons having been drowned there within a short time.
A CHILD DROWNED. – An Inquest was held at the King's Arms Inn, Coombe-street, on Wednesday evening, on the body of FREDERICK MILLMAN, aged three and a half years, the son of a fish dealer. Captain Barrett, of the ship Charlotte, heard the cry of a child in the water near the Quay and taking a boat he rowed to the spot and dragged carefully for half an hour, and when he succeeded in recovering the body life was extinct. A verdict of "Accidental death" was returned, the Coroner ( H. W. Hooper, Esq.) and Jury speaking in the highest praise of the conduct of Captain Barrett.
Wednesday 8 October 1862, Issue 5033 – Gale Document No. Y3200703507
EXETER – The Inquest on the body of GEORGE BROWNING, who, as we reported last week, died from injuries received in falling from scaffolding at the St. David's Station, resulted in a verdict of "Accidental Death."
FATAL ACCIDENT – An accident resulting in the death of MR JOHN COLLINS, straw-plait dealer, of Exeter, happened on Friday night on the road between Kingsbridge and Salcombe. This part of the road is reported to be very dangerous – many similar, if not fatal accidents, it is said, have happened there before. MR COLLINS was driving along on the right-hand side of the road close to the embankment when the left rein broke, the horse obeyed the remaining rein rather suddenly and pulled the vehicle; up the embankment. This precipitated the driver and a friend who was accompanying him – Mr Annis – into the road, and in an instant afterwards the vehicle rolled over, one of the wheels falling upon the breast of MR COLLINS and killing him on the spot. Mr Annis escaped with some serious dislocations and bruises. The accident happened about half-past nine o'clock, and about ten two men travelling along the road discovered the deceased and Mr Annis – the one dead, the other helpless. Assistance was soon procured from Kingsbridge. The Inquest on the body of MR COLLINS was held on Monday evening by Mr Cuming. The deceased leaves a wife and eight children to mourn their loss.
Wednesday 8 October 1862, Issue 5033 – Gale Document No. Y3200703519
THE MURDER OF A SHIPMASTER - Mr Reed, the Coroner for South Northumberland, held an adjourned Inquest in the Town-hall of North Shields, on Wednesday afternoon, upon the body of MR RICHARD SPRAGUE, ship-master, belonging to Brixham, whose death was occasioned by an attack made upon him in the Borough-road of that town, on the 13th of September, to rob him. John and Robert Armstrong, two brothers, were produced by the police. They denied to the superintendent of the force that they knew aught of the affair, but, upon being asked by the Coroner what they knew about MR SPRAGUE'S death, John Armstrong said that he was coming down the Borough-road about a quarter before eleven on the night of the 13th of September, when he heard a man cry "Police!" and saw him fall, and saw another man run away. He (Armstrong) chased the man who ran away until he lost him in some new buildings. He then went back to where the man had fallen, and saw that he was bleeding from a wound in his head. He would not touch him because he was so bloody and left him. He told another story, which had been taken down – viz., that he came upon the deceased and another man and woman, struggling, and interfered, when the woman put her hand into his mouth and wounded it, and she and one of the men then ran away. The other brother also gave contradictory evidence, but neither of them was examined on oath. Dr Bates stated that MR SPRAGUE died from fracture of the skull, the result of a blow from a stone. The deceased told him (the doctor) that he received the injury on his head while he was in the Borough-road, in the company of a woman. He was knocked down, he stated, by a blow from a stick or stone. The Jury, after consulting, agreed to an Open Verdict that the deceased had been murdered by some person or persons unknown, and recommended that the authorities offer a reward for the apprehension of the murderers.
Wednesday 22 October 1862, Issue 5035 – Gale Document No. Y3200703
EXETER – Fatal Accident. – On Friday a man, named JAMES PASSMORE, a waggoner, in the employ of Mr Strong, general carrier, of Commercial-road, was accidentally killed on Haldon. The deceased was engaged in removing furniture from Chudleigh to this city, and on going up Haldon-hill is supposed to have got on the shafts of his waggon, whence, by some means, he fell under the wheels, which passed over his head and killed him on the spot. His body was discovered by two labouring men, and taken back to Kennford, where an Inquest was held, before the Coroner for the district, and a verdict of "Accidental Death" returned.
Wednesday 29 October 1862, Issue 5036 – Gale Document No. Y3200703622
THE LATE ACCIDENT – An Inquest was held at the Topsham Inn, on Saturday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of JAMES BLACKMORE, who died from injuries received through falling from a ladder while engaged n painting a house on Southernhay. After being taken to the Devon and Exeter Hospital amputation of the leg was found to be necessary, and deceased only survived the operation a few days – dying on Saturday. A verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
Wednesday 19 November 1862, Issue 5039 – Gale Document No. Y3200703724
THE FIFTH OF NOVEMBER VICTIM – An Inquest was held on Wednesday evening at the Blue Boar, Magdalen-street, before H. D. Barton, Esq., Deputy Coroner for the city, on the body of JOHN NICKS, a single man, aged thirty-five years of age, formerly a seaman in the navy. It appears that the deceased, who lived with his father, JOHN NICKS, wheel-wright, behind the Wynards, had made some rockets on his own account, being a man-of-war's man, and left his father's house on the afternoon of Wednesday, the Fifth, to mingle in the sports of the evening. At about twelve o'clock that night he was in the Cathedral Yard, and according to the account, understood to have been given by himself, he had a rocket in his hand, which he was about to throw at a window, when it burst prematurely and injured his limb very seriously. He was taken into the Hospital a few minutes after, where he had remained to the time of his death. Mr Francis William Warrington, acting house surgeon, in his evidence, stated that the deceased, when brought in, was suffering from a severe lacerated wound of the palm of the right hand, between the forefinger and thumb, which injured the bones of the thumb. There were marks of powder in the wound, and the hand was black around it. It was just such a wound as an explosion of that nature would occasion. The patient went on very well, and the wound looked very well for so severe a one until Tuesday morning about five o'clock, when he was found to be suffering from lock-jaw. He lingered until seven o'clock on the morning of the Inquest the immediate cause of death being tetanus, which was occasioned by the injury to his hand. Deceased was careful to tell his father that the injury was not done by a rocket of his own making. Deceased had seen a good deal of fighting in his naval life; he had received, his father said, "four medals with clasps and bars, and lots of it." The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
DEATH BY DROWNING – An Inquest was held at the Blue Boy Inn, West-street, on Wednesday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of WILLIAM ANSTEY, a fireman, aged seventy-one years, who se body was found in the Mill Leat that morning, near the Quay. The deceased had for some months been living in a house in Bartholomew-street with his wife, who is blind. He left his house on Monday afternoon, about half-past four; and there was no evidence before Jury to shew that he was seen alive after that time. The Jury, acting on the suggestion of the Coroner, returned a verdict of "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 19 November 1862, Issue 5039 – Gale Document No. Y3200703733
ASHBURTON – Rifleman At A Bonfire. - We regret to state that the accident in the bonfire filed on the 5th of November, to which reference was made in a paragraph under this head last week, has resulted in death. The name of the unfortunate victim of this thoughtless – not to say criminal – prank on the part of a rifleman, was WM. FOOT. He was a young labourer of excellent character. The name of the rifleman who was charged with having caused his death is Daniel Skewes, a member of the Ashburton Rifle Corps. The Coroner (F. B. Cuming, Esq.,) held a court of Enquiry into the Circumstance attending the accident yesterday week, at the London Inn. The officers of the rifle corps were present, and Mr Francis watched the case on behalf of the members implicated. The evidence was of the most extraordinary character, and the verdict returned by the Jury not the least remarkable feature of the investigation.
Wednesday 26 November 1862, Issue 5040 – Gale Document No. Y3200703751
THE RECENT FALLING OF A HOUSE AT ST. LEONARD. - The Flying Post of the 5th instant contained a paragraph relative to the falling of a dilapidated house adjacent to St Leonard's wharf. It will be remembered that the premises fell in the morning whilst a number of children were within the house at play or removing the woodwork, and that some of them were much bruised. In the evening the stack of chimnies – the only portion of the premises then remaining –f ell while two women and several boys and girls were taking away the wooden materials from the ruins. Happily, one Richard Sharland, a labourer, saw the imminent danger of remaining on the ruins, and he cautioned the persons picking up the laths, &c.; but ere they had entirely quitted the ruins down came the chimnies, and a lad, named JAMES GARD, was completely embedded in the rubbish. Sharland soon removed the bricks and mortar from the poor boy, who was immediately conveyed to the Hospital. The lad was in a state of collapse at the time of admission; was suffering from two extensive scalp wounds on the upper and left side of the head – the skull being bare, but not fractured; and he was much bruised about the body. The patient progressed satisfactorily for some days; but then matters took an unfavourable turn, and he died on Friday morning from pyoemia. Mr H. W. Hooper held an Inquest the next day at the Blue Boar Inn, and the Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death." The deceased's mother stated at the Inquest that she was a widow, living in Centre-street; that her son worked at the Trew's Weir Paper Mills; was twelve years of age, and earned 4s. 6d. a week; he came home at seven on the night of the accident, had his tea, and then went out to play; some hour-and-half afterwards a neighbour ran into her house and said her son had been killed on the spot – This (said the poor woman) made me so ill that I could not go to see him at the Hospital till the next day." The Coroner asked the mother if her son said anything to her in reference to the falling of the chimnies. She replied, "Yes: when I was with him on Thursday last he said the boys were throwing stones at the chimney – they ought to be sent to prison".
Wednesday 3 December 1862, Issue 5041 – Gale Document No. Y3200703775
OTTERY ST. MARY – Accident. – On Sunday last a poor man, named CHARLES MARTIN, a groom, was taking the empty coach from the Ottery-road-station, to be deposited in the yard of the King's Arms Hotel, and when in the act of entering the yard he accidentally fell underneath the wheels and was very severely injured in the spine. He was at once removed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital. His case was hopeless from the first, and he died the following day. An Inquest will be held today.
Wednesday 10 December 1862, Issue 5042 – Gale Document No. Y3200703822
TOTNES – A YOUNG WOMAN FOUND DEAD IN THE ROAD. – On Wednesday afternoon a young woman of Bovey Tracey, named SUSAN BREWER, aged 25 years, was found dead in the turnpike road leading from Bovey Tracey to Furzeleigh, by a man named William Hillman. She was lying in the hedge on her face and hands. Hillman obtained assistance from some men in Whitstone Pound-house, one of whom recognized her as being the niece of MRS MARY SAWDYE, who lived near, and to where the deceased was at once removed. An Inquest was held at the Union Hotel, Bovey Tracey, on Thursday, before F. B. Cuming, Esq., Coroner, when Mr J. Lamble, surgeon, deposed that he had carefully examined the body of the deceased. He could not find any marks of violence, and, from the appearance of the body and face, there were indications of disease of the heart. There was no smell or trace of poison. The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased "Died by the Visitation of God."
Wednesday 10 December 1862, Issue 5042 – Gale Document No. Y3200703810
EXETER - Mr H. W. Hooper held an Inquest on Saturday at the Topsham Inn, in this city, upon the body of JAMES BALSOM, aged two years, son of a labourer, living at Broadclist. On the 15th of November the deceased's mother – in the act of cooking her husband's dinner – pouring some boiling water into a pan; at that moment the child was playing in the kitchen, but walking backwards upset the pan, and the boiling water went over its left side. The poor little fellow was much scalded, but though under medical attendance he did not make much progress towards recovery; and on Friday week Mrs T. D. Acland, of Sprydoncote, kindly took the child to the Devon and Exeter Hospital. For some days the patient went on very favourably after his admission; but on Thursday he did not seem so well, and died somewhat suddenly early on Friday morning, just after the nurse had given him a little wine. A post mortem examination showed that there was an effusion of serum into the membrane of the brain. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 17 December 1862, Issue 5043 – Gale Document No. Y3200703838
EXETER – Inquest. – An Inquest was held on Wednesday last, at the Gold Eagle Inn, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., on the body of ELLEN LODGE, a girl four years of age. The deceased child had lived with her grandmother in Rack Close-lane, in the parish of Allhallows-on-the-Walls. Mr Cumming attended her three or four months ago, when she was suffering from abscesses. She appeared to be in good health until within the last two days, when she complained of a pain in her stomach. She was not considered to be in a dangerous state, but she rapidly sunk, and expired on Tuesday morning. Mr Cumming considered death to have resulted from the giving way of an abscess, and from the exhaustion consequent thereon; and a verdict was returned accordingly.
Wednesday 17 December 1862, Issue 5043 – Gale Document No. Y3200703847
SIDMOUTH – An Inquest was held at the London Hotel, on Tuesday last, before Spencer M. Cox, Esq., Coroner, on the body of MRS JOANNA HILL, wife of MR HILL, of the Coast Guard Service. After having the evidence of B. T. Hodge, Esq., Surgeon, who had made a post mortem examination of the body, the Jury returned a verdict that deceased died of "Disease of the Heart."
SIDBURY – An Inquest was held at the Royal Oak Hotel, on Tuesday last, on the body of MR W. RECORDS, who died from injuries received by a timer waggon passing over him on the 21st of November last. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 31 December 1862, Issue 5045 – Gale Document No. Y3200703901
EXETER – Sudden Death. – On Wednesday an Inquest was held at the New Ship Inn,. St David's Hill, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., City Coroner, on the body of ELIZABETH MADGE, aged sixty-seven, the widow f a labourer residing in Chapel's Court, St. David's. On the previous Monday the deceased had complained to her daughter, of whom she rented a room, that she felt ill. The daughter gave the old lady some gin and put her to bed; and was then going to call a neighbour to her assistance when the deceased died. Mr Roper, surgeon proved that death resulted through the rupture of one of the large blood vessels of the heart. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died from Natural Causes."
Wednesday 31 December 1862, Issue 5045 – Gale Document No. Y3200703915
TOTNES – Sad Death Of A Child. – On Monday morning Mr A. B. Cumming, the Coroner for this division of the county, held an Inquest upon the body of a child two years of age, named EDWIN HARINGTON CHAMPERNOWNE, son of the REV. R. CHAMPERNOWNE, rector of Dartington. On Friday last the child was taken poorly; and MRS CHAMPERNOWNE directed the nurse to give him a little fluid magnesia, which she would find in a bottle on her bedroom mantelpiece. The nurse went to the room, and, finding several bottles there, looked for the word "fluid" on the label; but instead of taking the bottle labelled "Magnesia fluid," took a bottle of "Crew's Disinfecting Fluid." Of this she gave the child a teaspoon full. The mistake was not discovered for some time; when it was, Mr Owen, surgeon, of Totnes, was sent for, but the child died before his arrival. The Coroner commented on the negligence f the manufacturers of the fluid in not labelling so poisonous a mixture with the word poison. the Jury were satisfied that the nurse had administered it in pure accident, and returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 14 January 1863, Issue 5047 – Gale Document No. Y3200703966
EXETER – Suicide. – On Friday an Inquest was held at the Poltimore Arms, St. Sidwell, before Mr H. W. Hooper, City Coroner, on the body of ALEXANDER SNODGRASS, a carver, in the employ of the Messrs. Brock and Co. The deceased, who was well-known in the city, has left a wife and four young children. The deceased was in great pecuniary difficulties, and had appointed on the day of his death to meet a heavy bill, which he was quite unprepared to do. This weighed heavily on his mind. He had frequently of late complained of pains in the back of his head; and on Thursday was too unwell to attend to his work. He got up about eleven o'clock; but was obliged to go to bed again shortly afterwards. About twelve o'clock his wife took him a cup of tea to his bedroom; and on going again to see him about two hours afterwards found him suspended by a rope to an iron bar driven into the rafters of the ceiling, quite dead. This was in the children's bedroom, where deceased had passed the greater part of his Sundays lately. The Jury, after hearing the evidence, returned a verdict of "Temporary Insanity." The deceased was a man of great humour and facetious wit; and had recently lectured at the Exeter Working Men's Society and also at Ottery, almost throughout, by his manner and treatment of the subjects in hand, keeping the audience for two hours in continued laughter.
Wednesday 21 January 1863, Issue 5048 – Gale Document No. Y3200704011
EXMINSTER – Fatal Railway Accident. – An Inquest was held by R. R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner, at Townsing Farm, on Monday, touching the death of MR JOHN HUTCHINGS, farmer, sixty-three years of age, whose death resulted from injuries sustained by an accident at the Exminster Station of the South Devon Line on the previous Friday. Mr Fryer watched the Enquiry on the part of the deceased's friends; and Mr Cockshott, traffic superintendent on the South Devon Line, represented the company. The Enquiry occupied a considerable time; and in the end was adjourned for further evidence. The first witness called was Mr John Burrington, a farmer at Exminster. He rode with the deceased in a third-class carriage of the 6.32 p.m. train from St. Thomas' to Exminster on the previous Friday. The deceased was perfectly sober, and witness did not believe that he had been drinking in the least. At Exminster Station the train overshot the mark; and deceased, who was sitting next to the window, he believed got out of the carriage before the train backed. He did not see him get out; but that was his belief, for he afterwards saw deceased under the carriages with one of his legs smashed to atoms. When the train stopped he heard no whistle before it backed to the platform. He could not say whether any of the station lamps were lighted; but he thought there were on this occasion more posts than lamps. Certainly he could not see the position the deceased was in till a lamp was brought. He did not know whether the train was in motion or not when the deceased got out of the carriage. Mr J. T. Frost, a farmer at Powderham, was the second witness. He was sitting next to deceased in the carriage. On arriving at the Exminster Station the train overshot the mark, and rested for a moment, and his impression was that the deceased then got out before the train commenced its backward motion. He did not hear anyone call "Exminster" when the train arrived. The deceased must have got out of the carriage during the momentary stoppage, for witness missed him immediately on perceiving the train was backing. He did not hear any whistle or signal. The first intimation he had of the accident was when he was in the train, when he saw the porter hold up his hand and call out, "Hold hard, there's a man under the train." He did not get out because the train was in motion. If he had been sitting next to the door when the pause took place it was very probable he should have got out. He did not get out during the momentary stop because he was in conversation with Mr Burrington and Mr Brackney. The train was again immediately in motion, and it was backing very fast. If he had been sitting next to the door as the deceased was he might have supposed that the train had finally stopped to let out the passengers. It was a very dark night, and he saw no lamps lighted except hand lamps; he could not with certainty speak to the lamps being lighted at the station. He ran forward to where a porter was, and then saw the deceased under the wheels. He assisted to extricate him. Deceased said to him in a low tone of voice, as he was assisting him, "If the train had not backed, John, this would not have happened." Mr Collins, the foreman of the Jury, was also present.
The Coroner: I am sorry for it, Mr Collins, I would rather have had you as a witness than as foreman of the Jury. John Kentsbeer, a seaman, belonging to the William, of Exeter, was a passenger by the train, and travelled in the next carriage to the one in which deceased was. He remembered the train stopping at the Exminster station, but whether it had overshot the mark or not he did not know; but, when it did stop, he opened the door and stood on the step to get out on the platform. He then saw the deceased just landed on the platform, and holding by the carriage, or the door of it, which was open, and he also saw the carriages suddenly push back, and the deceased was turned round by his holding the carriages and fell between the platform and carriage. By the Coroner: When the train stopped for the temporary stoppage, he thought it had stopped for the passengers to get out. He did not hear anyone call "Exminster," and no one opened the carriage door for him. Henry Clowen, an agricultural labourer, gave similar evidence. Deceased was in the act of getting out of the carriage when the engine put back, and deceased swayed backwards and was thrown between the wheels and the platform. He thought he was swayed back by the carriage, as he had hold of the door. At that moment Kentisbeer was coming out of the next carriage; there were several others on the platform who had got out of the carriages. Heard no one call out "Exminster." The temporary stoppage was, he though, more than half a minute; it might have been a minute before it backed. Mr Fryer applied for an adjournment of the Enquiry in order to put in the evidence of a witness not in attendance (Mr Daimond). The Coroner said certainly if the evidence was considered material by the deceased's friends. The evidence of Mr G. Pycroft, surgeon, was then taken. It was merely to the effect that the injuries were so severe that Mr Edye and himself considered amputation of the limb necessary, and that deceased, who was actually a weak man – older in constitution than in years – died a few hours after the operation, from the effects of the injuries. The Inquest was then adjourned; and at the request of Mr Cockshott it was appointed to be held at the Railway Inn, near the station, on Saturday next, at half-past one o'clock. MR HUTCHINGS, who was deeply respected in the neighbourhood, leaves a wife and eleven children to mourn their loss. It was stated at the Enquiry as a remarkable coincidence that MR HUTCHINGS'S father met with a violent death, by being thrown from a horse, when he was within a few months of his sixty-third year. Had MR J. HUTCHINGS lived until April next, he would have been sixty-three years of age.
Wednesday 4 February 1863, Issue 5050 – Gale Document No. Y3200704065
EXETER – Sudden Death. – An Inquest was held on Friday, at Higher Mount Radford Terrace, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner, on the body of MRS HITCHCOCK. Deceased had for some time past been given to intemperate habits, and on the previous Wednesday she left the kitchen about two o'clock and locked herself in a small back parlour. Her husband returned about eight; and at nine o'clock (being alarmed at her long stay and her making no answer to repeated calls) he broke a square f glass and entered the room by the window, when he found her dead. Mr Edye, surgeon, was called in; and at the Inquest he gave it as his opinion that the deceased had died from heart disease or apoplexy. Verdict – "Died from the Visitation of God."
SUDDEN DEATH – An Inquest was held at the Barnstaple Inn, on Monday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., City Coroner, on the body of a married woman, named DINAH SMITH, the wife of a brass-finisher, in the employ of Mr J. Vickary, residing at Toby's-buildings, St. David's. Deceased went to market about nine o'clock in her usual health on Saturday evening, accompanied by Mrs Browning, a neighbour, and on her return, about an hour afterwards she complained of illness when near the Crown and Sceptre Inn, and could not walk any further. Mrs Browning fetched her husband, but before he came she had dropped down. He obtained assistance and conveyed her home, where she shortly afterwards expired. Mr Webb, surgeon, had been in the habit of attending her for several years, and had seen her during the day. The deceased was far advanced in pregnancy; he could not positively state the cause of death without a post mortem examination; but there was nothing to excite suspicion that deceased had died other than by natural causes. Verdict – "Died from the Visitation of God."
Wednesday 4 February 1863, Issue 5050 – Gale Document No. Y3200704079
TORRINGTON – We regret to record the death of MR DENNIS KINGDON, solicitor of this town, which happened on Thursday from the effect of a concussion of the brain, received by a fall on the previous Tuesday. It is only a few months since MR KINGDON succeeded to the extensive practice of his late brother at Holsworthy; and was on a visit to his brother-in-law, Mr fry, making preparations for removal to that town, when the accident which has terminated thus fatally occurred. An Inquest was held on Friday by H. A. Vallack, Esq., Coroner for this division of the county. Verdict "Accidental Death."
OTTERY ST. MARY – Accident. – An Inquest was held at Mayyard House Farm, on Monday, before Spencer M. Cox, Esq., Coroner, on view of the body of a child named SAMUEL J. MILTON, son of MR SAMUEL MILTON. It appeared from the evidence that the poor little fellow went, about nine o'clock in the morning, to a field on the farm with the cows, and not returning his brother went to look for him and found him lying in a lane, with a gate on him across his chest and both legs between the bars of the gate. The poor boy it seems went on the gate, which fell on him, causing death. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 18 February 1863, Issue 5052 – Gale Document No. Y3200704126
TIVERTON – Fatal Accident. – An Inquest was held on Monday at the New Inn, Bickleigh, on the body of WM. CROOK, a young man about nineteen years of age, lately in the employ of Mr Gould. He was unroofing a building when the walls gave way, fell on him, causing such injury that he died almost instantaneously. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 25 February 1863, Issue 5053 – Gale Document No. Y3200704155
EXETER - Accidental Death. – An Inquest was held at the Topsham Inn, on Wednesday last, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., on the body of RICHARD CHAPPLE, aged forty-six. The deceased was coachman to Capt. Burns, St. Leonard's. On Saturday the 27th of December he was out exercising two horses. They were very restive, not having yet been broken in. On passing a fly one of them pushed against it, and CHAPPLE'S leg was struck by the iron spring, and he was knocked out of the saddle. He attempted to save himself by jumping, but fell on his back, and as he still held the reins was dragged a short distance before the horses could be stopped. Deceased was taken in a fly to the hospital, where it was found that he had sustained a compound fracture of the left leg. A consultation was held, and it was found necessary to amputate the limb. He rallied for a short time, but he never seemed to recover from the accident, and a large abscess formed over the thigh. He continued weak and died on the previous afternoon. Mr Huxley, house surgeon at the hospital, considered death to have arisen from the fracture and the diseases following it, and the Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 25 March 1863, Issue 5057 – Gale Document No. Y3200704276
SALCOMBE REGIS - INQUEST – An Inquest was held at Sidford, in this parish, on Thursday last, before Spencer M. Cox, Esq., touching the death of a child named WILLIAM HENRY BARTLETT, the illegitimate son of MARY JANE BARTLETT, a domestic servant. It appeared from the evidence that the child died very suddenly on the 14th instant, and before medical aid could be called in; but from a medical examination made after death it appeared that the child was not fully developed and died from exhaustion. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
BARNSTAPLE – Fatal Accident – A porter, named PAVEY, was accidentally killed at the station on Friday. He was engaged in the removal of one of the engines to the engine-house when he accidentally slipped and one of the wheels passed over and mutilated his legs, and the ash-pan of the engine crushed his chest. On arriving in the North Devon Infirmary, he was attended by Mr Ford and Mr Morgan, and revived sufficiently to recognise his wife. At the Inquest on Saturday, before Mr I. Bencraft, the Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental death," appending to it the suggestion that some other less dangerous method of shunting the engines might be adopted by the railway company. The Jury also desired that their fees might be given to the bereaved widow, who, to add to her distress, is near her confinement.
Wednesday 8 April 1863, Issue 5059 – Gale Document No. Y3200704332
BROADHEMBURY – Inquest. – An Inquest was held in this village last week, before Spencer M. Cox, Esq., Coroner, touching the death of a child aged four years, named DAWE. It appears from the evidence that on Tuesday the mother left her home to attend the payroom for her parochial relief, and while absent the poor child's clothes caught fire, and no one being near the child was soon burnt to death. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death." This is the second child that has been burnt in the parish within a few weeks by their being incautiously left by their parents.
Wednesday 13 May 1863, Issue 5064 – Gale Document No. Y3200704453
EXETER – A Family History – On Thursday the City Coroner, (H. W. Hooper, Esq.,) held an Inquest at the Butcher's Arms, on the body of a woman, forty-two years of age, named ELIZA HART, who died on the previous Sunday, in Jew's Court, Smythen-street, from disease of the heart. The evidence was of a very painful nature. The deceased was the wife of a farm labourer, at Sidbury, and ten or twelve years ago she left her husband, and lived in adultery with another man. Two illegitimate children were born, and the woman had a daughter, eight or nine years old, who, at the time she left her husband, accompanied her. At the time of her death MRS HART was a prostitute on the streets, being partly supported by her late paramour; and her three children were living with her. The eldest, PHOEBE, who is nineteen years of age, is following the immoral example of her mother, and the other children are a girl eleven years of age and a boy some year or so younger. They appear to be intelligent, interesting children; but left to the guidance of their elder sister their future is in all probability one of crime and misery, unless they are rescued from the pernicious association of their present life by the intervention of some of the benevolent societies of the city.
A SAILOR DROWNED – An Inquest was held at the Royal George Inn, on the Quay, on Saturday, by the City Coroner on view of the body of EDWARD STORER. The deceased arrived in Exeter on Friday, in a vessel that brought in a cargo of potatoes. He went on shore in the course of the evening, but subsequently returned and had supper with the captain, after which both retired to their respective berths. In the course of the night, deceased came on deck, and is supposed to have accidentally fallen overboard. Verdict – "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 13 May 1863, Issue 5064 – Gale Document No. Y3200704470
BROADCLIST - An Inquest was held on Saturday, at the Red Lion Inn, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner, on the body of MARIA SNELL, who was found in the river Culm, near Ellery's Bridge, on the previous day. The deceased was about thirty-four years of age, and had been in the service of the Rev. R. N. Shutte and others, and last Feb. she was taken ill, when she went to the house of a Mrs Cann, a friend of hers in the West Quarter, Exeter. There she was attended by Mr James at the request of Mr Shutte, and afterwards by Mr J. S. Perkins, medical officer of the district. While under Mr James she attempted suicide by cutting her throat, and inflicted wounds in her neck. Mr Perkins attended her seven days, during which time she progressed favourably, and then left and went to Crediton to her mother's, where she remained a fortnight. She had been sometimes better and then worse ever since, and on the previous Wednesday she left her house to visit a gardener (Mr Daw, St. Sidwell) with whom she was acquainted, but did not return. She left his house and wandered away to Broadclist, where she was seen leaning on a gate at Loxbrook by a Mrs Tucker, who asked her what she wanted, when she replied "nothing," and then asked her where she came from, and she said Exeter, and was going back. She said she was resting herself. Mrs Tucker invited her into her cottage, and gave her some tea and bread and butter. She appeared to be in great trouble about something, and was crying. She went away about ten o'clock and Mrs Tucker went out soon after and found her looking about for somewhere to lie down. Finding deceased had no money, Mrs Tucker took her into her house and gave her a bed for the night. After partaking of breakfast next morning deceased left with the intention of going to Exeter. the Rev. R. N. Shutte attended the Inquest and took great interest in the proceedings. He cross-examined the witnesses with a view to attach blame to some person or persons for allowing the deceased – a lunatic as he alleged – to be at large.
Mr Shutte asked Mrs Tucker why, find the woman to be strange in her manner, she had not given information to the police? Mrs Tucker replied that she did not believe her to be a mad woman as she talked quite reasonable. She found afterwards deceased was about in the neighbourhood and had not proceeded direct to Exeter, and then she gave information at the police-office, but both the officers were on duty.
The CORONER said no blame could possibly be attached to Mrs Tucker, who had acted the part of the good Samaritan: she took deceased in, lodged her, fed her, and in the morning she departed on her way.
Mr Shutte asked Mrs Tucker whether she enquired of deceased what her illness was? when
THE CORONER interposed, and said that was no evidence in this case, - the woman was found drowned. He should not call Mr Perkins, but if that gentleman wished to tender evidence he would take it.
MR SHUTTE: If Mr Perkins gives any evidence I shall
MR PERKINS: I tender no evidence. THE CORONER said he saw the drift of the rev. gentleman, which was to ascertain whether deceased was in such a state when the professional gentlemen attended her that she ought to have been placed in confinement, and he wanted to raise the question as to whether these gentlemen were not negligent in not taking deceased before a magistrate and sending her to an asylum.
MR SHUTE said his purpose was not to impugn any person. Deceased had been in his service, and a strong feeling existed among her friends that she had not been properly cared for. The question should be gone into thoroughly or not at all. THE CORONER said if any person came and tendered evidence he would take it. As far as he could see of the case there was no blame to be attached to any person.
The examination of witnesses was then continued. After leaving Mrs Tucker's the next thing heard of her was her being found in the water by a boy named Manley. Sergeant Burnell, of the Devon County Constabulary, took possession of the body and conveyed it to Broadclist. In deceased's pocket was found a piece of paper containing two directions where she had been to apply for situations and a pocket handkerchief bearing her name.
MR SHUTTE said the only person who saw the deceased on that day stated that she was not a mad woman. He submitted that other evidence ought to be adduced to show the state of deceased's mind. He had no other object than the administration of justice.
THE CORONER said if any other evidence was forthcoming he would take it. He asked Mr Perkins if he had any? MR PERKINS replied that he had not.
MR SHUTTE still thought that there had been some neglect, and that further enquiry was necessary; he could not, however, proceed further without professional advice.
THE CORONER summed up. So far as he could gather, instead of neglect, every kindness and attention had been shewn to the unfortunate deceased.
The Jury having consented to hear a statement from Mr Shutte, the rev. gentleman gave it as his opinion that the deceased's mind was affected – he represented as much to Mr Perkins, and in his (Mr Shutte's) opinion she ought to have been sent to an asylum.
MR PERKINS said he attended her specially seven days, and saw nothing in her conduct which would justify her being sent to an asylum. She then returned to the St Sidwell's district, and was, he believed, under Dispensary treatment for fourteen days. She afterwards went to Crediton. He saw her again last Tuesday: she appeared to be very well, and asked him to get her a situation if he could.
The Jury returned a verdict of "Found Drowned", and the Coroner added that no blame whatever could be attached to anyone.
Wednesday 20 May 1863, Issue 5065 – Gale Document No. Y3200704483
EXETER – An Inquest was held yesterday at the Board-room of the workhouse before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a man, named JAMES BATTERSHALL, who was conveyed to the workhouse on the previous night in a state of insensibility and died a few hours afterwards. Deceased was a married man and a native of Kennford. In his pocket was found an attestation paper of deceased's having served in the Artillery Militia, and he had also been a groom in the service of Sir J. Trelawny, near Plymouth. He had been out of work for some time, and on Saturday and Monday visited a coffeeshop in Milk-street where, on Monday evening, he was taken ill, and Mr Perkins, who was in the market with the Volunteer Artillery, was called in, and ordered his immediate removal to the workhouse. Mr Warren, surgeon, attended him there and thought at first he was drunk. He was unable to state the cause of deceased's death without a post mortem examination, but he was of opinion that death was caused while under the influence of some poisonous narcotic. The Coroner adjourned the Inquiry until this evening in order that a post mortem examination might be made.
Wednesday 27 May 1863, Issue 5066 – Gale Document No. Y3200704510
EXETER – At the adjourned Inquiry at the Workhouse on Wednesday into the cause of the death of JAMES BATTERSHALL, the particulars of which were reported last week, and which was adjourned for the purpose of making a post mortem examination, Mr Warren, surgeon, said deceased died of coma arising from a softening of the brain, and the Jury returned a verdict in accordance with the medical gentleman's testimony. Some discussion arose among the Jury as to whether neglect was not attributable to some of the authorities by the delay in admitting deceased to the workhouse. Mr Sparkes (relieving officer) was called and explained that the delay was quite accidental.
Wednesday 3 June 1863, Issue 5067 – Gale Document No. Y3200704549
MUSBURY - Concealment Of Birth. - The inhabitants of this place were greatly shocked a few days ago by the discovery in a cesspool of a newly-born male child, in a state of decomposition. The body was found by a man-servant in the employ of Mr Loveridge, of Cross Farm, who had been instructed to cleanse the cesspool. ANN HELLIER, maid-servant to Mr Loveridge, was suspected of being the mother of the child, in consequence of recent sickness. At the Inquest held upon the body on Thursday, by Spencer Cox, Esq., Coroner. Mrs Loveridge was examined, and deposed that about a fortnight previously the girl ANN HELLIER complained of illness, but showed no symptoms of having given birth to a child, nor did her appearance lead her mistress to suspect that anything unusual was the matter. After a short say in her room, HELLIER proceeded about her usual work. Harriet Loud, a friend of HELLIER'S, stated that the latter had informed her that she was in the family ay by a young man named White; but HELLIER had subsequently told her that she had taken something and she thought she was better. On the body of the child being found HELLIER denied all knowledge of it. Mr Snook, surgeon, declared in evidence that the girl HELLIER had been recently delivered, about the time when the body must have been put into the cesspool. The child had been born alive, but there were no external marks to account for the cause of death. The verdict of the Jury was to the effect that the deceased was the child of ANN HELLIER, but the Jury expressed no opinion as to the cause of death.
Wednesday 10 June 1863, Issue 5068 – Gale Document No. Y3200704560
EXETER – A Youth Drowned. – A lad about sixteen years of age, named RICHARD SCOT, was boating on the canal on Sunday afternoon in company with two comrades, and it appears that in passing a drawbridge he was struck on the head and knocked out of the boat and immediately drowned. At the Inquest on Monday at the Double Locks, the Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death", appending thereto their censure of the parties frequenting the canal for boating purposes on Sundays, and requested the Coroner to notify the same to the Town Council, in order that some means might be taken to its discontinuance, which he promised to do.
Wednesday 10 June 1863, Issue 5068 – Gale Document No. Y3200704577
DAWLISH – Fatal Fall Over A Cliff. – A boy named SHELSTONE was killed last week in consequence of his having fallen over a cliff at Dawlish. At the Inquest held on the body, at the White Hart, the Jury returned a verdict to the effect that the lad's death had resulted from a casualty, but the Coroner animadverted severely upon the fact that a cliff no less than sixty feet high had been negligently left without any railing or other protection to the public.
Wednesday 17 June 1863, Issue 5069 – Gale Document No. Y3200704589
EXETER – An Inquest was held at the Devon County Prison on Saturday, before A. W. Leigh, Esq., Deputy Coroner, on the body of DAVID FLYNN, a sailor belonging to her Majesty's ship Hawk. Deceased was committed in July, 1861, under sentence of a naval court-martial, for two years' hard labour. He died on bronchitis on Thursday, and the Jury returned a verdict of "Natural Death."
Wednesday 24 June 1863, Issue 5070 – Gale Document No. Y3200704615
BURLESCOMBE – An Inquest was held by A. W. Leigh, Esq., Deputy Coroner, on Wednesday, the 17th inst., at Burlescombe, on the body of HENRY TAYLOR, a lime merchant, and who had recently become a bankrupt. It appeared that after deceased returned from Exeter on Saturday, 13th inst., after an examination in the Bankruptcy Court, he became very depressed and low in spirits, and to be quite unable to contend against his misfortune. On the following Tuesday although he had to keep an engagement in Tiverton he did not rise from bed till about noon, and on his wife sending him up his dinner by one of the children she on entering the room found him lying on his bed partly dressed, and blood about his clothes. On her asking him what he had done, he replied "Nothing," which he repeated on her making the enquiry a second time. It was, of course, soon discovered what he had done, and Dr Thorne, of Holcomb, was immediately sent for, who on his arrival found no chance of his life being saved. Deceased lived for about fifty minutes after, during which time he conversed with the doctor, to whom he said it was trouble which made him do it. Medical evidence was given by Mr Wheaton, of Culmstock, of the tendency of the deceased to congestion of the brain and for which he had been recently under his treatment, and that there was insanity in the family, leaving no doubt that deceased committed the act during that state, and a verdict accordingly was returned. Deceased leaves a widow and eleven children.
Wednesday 24 June 1863, Issue 5070 – Gale Document No. Y3200704626
BROADCLIST – Suicide. – An Inquest was held by A. W. Leigh, Esq., Deputy Coroner, on Wednesday, the 17th inst., at the Dairy-house of Culm John Farm, in this parish, on the body of MARY ANN BELWORTHY, a single woman, aged twenty-three years, who had destroyed herself on the previous day by hanging herself. Deceased, who was a native of Spreyton, in this county, had entered the service of James White, dairyman, about five weeks' since, and up to the time of her decease nothing had ever appeared in her conduct or manner indicative of any unsoundness of mind. She always discharged her duties efficiently, and her mistress never had any occasion to complain of her. On Tuesday, the 16th, it being washing day, deceased was engaged in that work all the morning up to about ten o'clock in the forenoon, when her mistress, Mrs White, missed her from her work, and in about half an hour, not finding her return to it; she went to ascertain where she was. Going in the direction of the privy where Mrs White suspected she was (and which privy appeared to be erected in a most unusual and improper place amongst the pens and stalls of the yard) she at a short distance from it called to the deceased, but on receiving no answer from her went up the door and pushed it, but was unable to open it. On looking up Mrs White saw a rope tied round the lintel of and some boarding above the door, the rope passing from the outside to the inside over the door. She then gave an alarm and a boy, called George Mallett, came and cut the rope. Mrs White then fainted away and became unconscious, and the boy being unable to force upon the door from the body having fallen between it and the seat, ran for assistance, when several men arrived, and after some difficulty succeeded in forcing it partially open. On looking in one of the men, Samuel Butt, saw the body of the deceased, and the rope attached to it, but most extraordinary to relate neither he nor any of the others entered to see whether the deceased was alive or dead, but they all left, and not until the Police-Sergeant Burnell, who had been sent for, arrived from Broadclist, about two hours afterwards, did anyone approach the body. On Burnell entering the place he found the rope fastened round the neck by a running knot, which was drawn so tight that it was with great difficulty he could insert his fingers under to enable him to cut the rope, which was quite embedded in the flesh. George Mallett, the boy, stated that he had seen deceased enter the privy he being near at the time, and that after she had done so she called out to him to make haste and go on after the water, which was the water he had to fetch from the river for the washing. This it was suggested might have been for the purpose of getting him out of the way, for whilst he was gone she must have committed the act, for it was on his return that he heard Mrs White giving alarms. The Jury returned a verdict of Felo de se.
Wednesday 1 July 1863, Issue 5071 – Gale Document No. Y3200704647
NEWTON ABBOT – Shocking Death By Violence. – On Saturday night last about eight o'clock a woman named Ellen Hailer went, in a state of intoxication, into the house of a neighbour named JOHN CHAPPLE, an old man and a pipe maker by trade. The woman abused the old man, and subsequently, he being old and rather infirm, threw him against the stairs, where he evidently received a severe blow. She laid hold of him again and illused him whilst lying on the floor. A woman named Sprague used every effort to part them, but not being able to do so she called in several of the neighbours, and the prisoner was with difficulty removed. The deceased, who was entirely unconscious, was put to bed, and Mr Gillard and Mr James, surgeons, sent for, but he died about three hours afterwards. The prisoner was then taken into custody by the police. When she was informed of the dangerous state the deceased was in she calmly replied that "it served the old rogue right, for he ought to have been dead years ago." The prisoner has been remanded until this day (Wednesday.) An Inquest was held on Monday at the Jolly Sailor Inn, before Mr F. B. Cuming, Coroner, and the Jury having recommended that a post mortem examination should be made the Inquest was adjourned until the following day.
Wednesday 8 July 1863, Issue 5072 – Gale Document No. Y3200704664
A YOUTH SHOT NEAR COLLUMPTON – The neighbourhood of Collumpton has been deeply shocked by the very lamentable death of JOHN CHARLES NORMAN, a fine, promising youth, seventeen years of age, son of MR JOHN NORMAN, ropemaker, in the parish of Kentisbeare, who accidentally shot himself on Monday morning under the following harrowing circumstances. The deceased for several mornings previous to his death had engaged, in company with his brother WILLIAM, in shooting jays that were destroying the fruit in an orchard adjoining his father's house. On Monday morning he and his brother betook themselves to a small brush-covered linhay, and stayed there for upwards of an hour in wait for birds, and screened from sight by a number of furze branches. The deceased had a very good gun, but his brother had with him a second gun, the lock of which was so defective that the hammer stayed up neither at half nor at full cock. This gun was fired without use of the trigger, and by pulling back the hammer and allowing it to spring forward on the cap. At about eight o'clock the deceased left the linhay and dug potatoes for a few minutes, when he returned to the shed, and told his brother not to remain there longer. He, however, desired that the defective gun should be handed out to him. This gun was loaded at the time with a full charge of powder and a number of pieces of cut lead. The gun was handed out by the lad inside the linhay, partly through the bushes, when deceased took hold of the barrel, and his brother having given up his hold of the gun the deceased pulled it towards him. The muzzle was then pointed toward his left side. In drawing out the gun the hammer, which was upon the cap, struck lightly against a rail that happened to have been placed across the front of the hut, and the sudden pressure on the cap caused the gun to go off. The charge entered the left breast of the youth, frightfully lacerating the frame of the chest, and literally blowing away a great portion of the hart. The unfortunate boy gave one scream and rushed towards his father's house. He had, however, staggered hastily but twelve paces when he cried out, "I shall died," and fell to the ground. His father, who had heard his shriek, ran up to him, but only to see him dying, and in a half minute he was quite dead. Yesterday afternoon an Inquest was held on the body at Driller's Tavern, by S. M. Cox, Esq., Coroner, when WILLIAM HENRY NORMAN was examined, and deposed to the above facts. MR JOHN NORMAN added that he saw his dead son immediately after hearing the report of the gun. The blood gushed out of his breast, and he died almost immediately. The brothers were always on the most amiable terms. His younger son stated at the time that he had given up the gun when it exploded. Mr Richard George Collins, superintendent of constabulary, said that he was on the spot shortly after the occurrence, and accompanied deceased's father to the linhay. There he saw WILLIAM NORMAN, and administered to him a caution that he need not criminate himself; but he then gave substantially the same account of the sad affair as he had given since to the Jury. The Coroner expressed his regret that such dangerous firearms as the one in question should ever be entrusted to any one, especially to youths; but the negligence which had resulted so unfortunately, appeared to have been solely attributable to the deceased. The Jury concurred in this opinion, and returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 15 July 1863, Issue 5073 – Gale Document No. Y3200704689
An Inquest was held at the Horse and Groom Inn, Heavitree, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a child about eighteen months old, named MARY ANN CANN, daughter of JAMES CANN, groom to Captain Griffin, Mont-le-Grande. The father was engaged in cleaning the horses outside the stable door, when one of them ran into the stable where the child was and knocked the poor little girl down, killing her instantaneously. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
BUDLEIGH SALTERTON – An Inquest was held at the Rolle Arms Hotel, on Tuesday, before S. M. Cox, Esq., Coroner, on the body of WILLIAM JONES, aged thirty-three, late a musician in the 16th Lancers, who died on Saturday. Various reports had been in circulation to the effect that deceased, who has been blind for seven or eight years, came to an untimely end through being poisoned by his wife, and it was in consequence of these reports the Coroner ordered a post mortem examination and held an Inquest, at which the following evidence was adduced, which shows that such reports were entirely unfounded. ELIZABETH JONES, the wife of the deceased, stated she was married to deceased in October, 1860. On the morning of his death he did not rise at his usual hour, and between eight and nine he complained of a violent headache, and soon afterwards became sick and vomited. Being subject to similar attacks she did not send for the doctor until he became much worse in the after part of the day, when she sent for Dr Murphy, who had been in the habit of attending him. Between six and seven in the evening he called her to his side, and said, "I am dying, I am dying: may the Lord take my life," and shortly afterwards expired. On the evening previous to his death deceased had been to his mother's house to tea and supper, and on his return he drank a glass of beer and ate a little bread and cheese, and that was all he had had to her knowledge. She was not aware of anything having been given him of a poisonous nature, although he had often complained that she gave him different to eat from what she had herself; but this was not true. On reasoning with him about it he had said it was fancy, and he attributed it to his blindness. Rosa Tuck, who rented a room in deceased's house, said MRS JONES called her in the afternoon, and on approaching deceased she heard a gurgling in the throat, and deceased had the appearance of being in a fit. She immediately fetched his father and sent for Dr Murphy. She had seen him in similar fits many times before. Dr Murphy said he had attended deceased four or five months, and often found him suffering from violent pains in the head, from which he understood he had been subject for several years. He attended deceased on Saturday and found him dying from an apoplectic fit. He made a post mortem examination, and found abundance of proofs that deceased's death was the result of apoplexy, and also that his blindness was occasioned by a similar fit. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 22 July 1863, Issue 5074 – Gale Document No. Y3200704721
DEATH OF A LADY BY BURNING. – An Inquest was held on Friday afternoon, at Love's Commercial Hotel, Torquay, before F. Cuming, Esq., the Coroner, on the body of MISS MARY ANN BLAKE, who died early on Thursday morning, at Anglesey, on the Upper Lincombe Road, the residence of DR C. PAGET BLAKE. The young lady, it appears, had retired to her room for the night, on Tuesday, when a spark fell from the candle, and ignited the toilet cover; in the endeavour to extinguish it the fire was communicated to her own dress, and she was so severely burnt in consequence that medical aid was of no avail; she gradually sank and expired on Thursday. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died from injuries received from Accidental Burning."
Wednesday 29 July 1863, Issue 5075 – Gale Document No. Y3200704749
EXETER – Inquest. – Mr Hooper, Coroner, held an Inquest on Thursday morning at the Half Moon Hotel, High-street, on the body of MR JOHN PEARSE, livery stable keeper, Bedford-street, who expired suddenly on the previous day. From the evidence it appeared that deceased had suffered for a considerable time for disease of the heart. On Wednesday MR PEARSE rose at Seven o'clock and complained of feeling unwell. After having taken but little breakfast he went into the yard and gave directions that some shavings should be lit in the grate of the harness-room. He then fell back suddenly, and the man who ran to his assistance saw that he was dying. Mr James and Mr Drake, surgeons, shortly after arrived, and also deceased's sister, but life had fled. Verdict – "Died from disease of the heart."
Wednesday 29 July 1863, Issue 5075 – Gale Document No. Y3200704744
WHIPTON – A Determined Suicide. – On Thursday Mr Crosse, Coroner, held an Inquest at the Half Moon Inn, at Whipton, on the body of a married woman, named HANNAH TAYLOR, who committed suicide on Wednesday by throwing herself into a well. The deceased was the wife of FREDERICK GEORGE TAYLOR, a coach painter, of Catherine-street, Exeter, having been married to him thirty years. For the last two months she had been in a very desponding state, in consequence of the illness of her husband, who had been unwell for some time; and she seemed afraid that he would die, and leave her and her little girl (about eight years of age) destitute. On Wednesday morning she got up at seven o'clock, and left the house unknown to her husband, who was in bed. As she did not return at nine o'clock he made enquiries for her, and heard that the body of a woman had been found in a well at Stoke-hill. He went, and was shocked to find it to be the body of his wife. The body was found by Mr John Ellacombe, of Polsloe Farm, who in passing the well saw the shawl of a woman on the ground. On it were placed a bonnet, a prayer-book, and a pair of spectacles; an umbrella was against the hedge. He looked into the well and saw the body of deceased. It was conveyed to the Half Moon Inn. The evidence went to show that the deceased's mind had been affected by the sickness of her husband, and the Jury returned a verdict to the effect that deceased was under the influence of Temporary Insanity when she destroyed herself.
HEMYOCK – Accidental Death. – A farmer, MR JOHN HITCHCOCK, was killed on Wednesday last under the following distressing circumstances:- The deceased was hauling turf in a small waggon, which was in bad repair, with his pony, for William Grubham. Grubham, after having helped to load, and walked beside deceased with the waggon for some distance, went on before, and soon got out of sight through a turn in the road. When about 300 yards off he heard the waggon going on very fast, and on returning he met the pony coming with the shafts and the fore-carriage of the waggon, but could not stop it. Grubham went back further, and found the other part of the waggon and the deceased lying with his face towards the ground. He could not speak, and died in the course of twenty minutes. Mr Wheaton, surgeon, was sent for, but the poor man was dead before his arrival. On examination marks as of wheels were found on the body, having passed over the lower part of the bowels, and the legs were injured. Deceased was seventy-four years of age. An Inquest was held before Mr Spencer M. Cox on the body at the New Inn, and a verdict was returned in accordance with the above facts.
Wednesday 5 August 1863, Issue 5076 – Gale Document No. Y3200704776
TOPSHAM – On Wednesday evening last, HENRY HOOPER, aged eighteen years, only child of MR JOSEPH HOOPER, a respectable tradesman of this town, was accidentally drowned whilst bathing n the river Clist. On Thursday at Inquest was held on the body, when a verdict of "Accidentally Drowned," was returned.
Wednesday 12 August 1863, Issue 5077 – Gale Document No. Y3200704811
EXETER – Death By Drowning. – At an early hour on Thursday morning the body of a woman was discovered by a labourer to be floating in the river at the Port Royal. The body was removed to the Port Royal Inn and was identified as being that of ANNE YARDLEY, wife of a porter living in Cricklepit-lane. An Inquest was held at the Port Royal Inn before Mr Crosse, Coroner, and a verdict of "Accidentally Drowned" was returned.
FATAL GUN ACCIDENT IN EXETER – At midday on Thursday a melancholy accident took place in Codrington-street, by which a young woman lost her life. The deceased (MARTHA WINDSOR) was a tailoress, and was at work at Mrs Brennan's, 33 Codrington-street. At about twelve o'clock she went to the fire-place at the time a young man, named Abraham Brennan, was at play with a dog. He had in his hand a gun which was loaded, but Brennan was ignorant of the fact, and by some means the gun was discharged, the charge entering the neck of the unfortunate young woman on the right side and shattering the jaw on the left side. blowing the tongue from the mouth and frightfully injuring the head. The young man was taken into custody to await the Inquest which was held before the City Coroner the same evening. A number of witnesses were examined who saw the accident, and Mr Perkins, surgeon, described the dreadful nature of the injuries inflicted, and stated that death must have been instantaneous. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death." Wednesday 12 August 1863, Issue 5077 – Gale Document No. Y3200704822
ASHREIGNEY – An Inquest was held in the parish of Ashreigney on Monday last by R. Bremridge, Esq., on the body of THOS. ROWE, farm servant, aged seventeen, who in attempting to cross the river with a horse and cart incautiously took a wrong place at a deep whirlpool, and himself and horse were both drowned.
ASHBURTON – Death From Lockjaw. – On Thursday, last week, GEORGE, only son of MR GEORGE WILLS YOLLAND, while on a visit to his uncle, MR JAMES HEXT, Hallsworthy Farm, Staverton, went with him to a field on the farm, where MR HEXT was engaged in trimming the side of the hedge, and walking close behind him, came within reach of the hook, with which the poor boy's little finer was severed, and the third and fourth fingers lacerated. He was immediately conveyed to Ashburton, to the house of Mr W. S. Gervis, surgeon, where his wounds were promptly attended to. Everything seemed to be going on well before Thursday last, when symptoms of tetanus exhibited themselves. The poor little sufferer lingered until Friday, half-past twelve at noon, when he expired. An Inquest was held on Saturday afternoon, at the London Inn, before W. F. Windeat, Esq., Deputy Coroner, when a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
CULLOMPTON – Fatal Accident. – HENRY DENNER, in the service of Mr Thomas Grant, farmer, of Newland, in this parish, was accidentally killed on Saturday night, on the Honiton road, between Dilford and Cullompton, about a mile from the station. He had been out to work with a waggon and two horses, and in the course of the afternoon undertook a small job for a neighbour which brought him later on his return home than he ought to have been. In order to make up the lost time he was driving his team at a rapid pace, and when the waggon came near the farm the youth found it no easy thing to stop them. He was getting off for the purpose of bringing up the horses before they passed the gate, when he fell before the wheels, which went over him, crushing his head to pieces. The skull was broken into four parts, and the brains scattered about the road in a frightful state. An Inquest was held on Monday morning at the Four Horse Shoes, Kentisbeare, before S. M. Cox, Esq., Coroner, when a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned. Deceased was but seventeen years of age.
Wednesday 19 August 1863, Issue 5078 – Gale Document No. Y3200704839
EXETER – Inquest. – The child SIDNEY SMITH, two years and a half old, who was run over about ten days since by one of Mr Wall's wagons upon the quay, died on Friday evening from the injuries it had received. An Inquest was held on the body by H. w. Hooper, Esq., at the Topsham Inn, and a verdict was returned of "Accidental Death."
At an Inquest held by H. W. Hooper, Esq., at the Valiant Soldier, a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned in regard to the decease on Tuesday week of a man named BOWDEN, who was at work tarring a waterwheel on Haldon farm, when he fell from the wheel into the pit below, and was crushed between the wall and the wheel. The pit was sixteen feet deep. He was taken out by another labourer named Todd, and immediately conveyed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital; but he died half-an-hour after his admission.
BOY DROWNED – A boy named BROWNING, aged twelve, whilst bathing at the Head Weir on Monday morning, attempted to walk across, but getting entangled in some weed, was drowned before assistance could be rendered. An Inquest was held in the evening at the paper Maker's Arms, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body, and a verdict of "Accidental Death" returned. The Coroner ordered a gratuity for Isaac Smith, bricklayer, of Heavitree, to whom he worthily gave great praise inasmuch as Smith jumped into the water with his clothes on to the rescue of the deceased, and would probably have saved him had not the weeds unfortunately prevented the extrication of the body before life was extinct.
Wednesday 26 August 1863, Issue 5079 – Gale Document No. Y3200704866
FATAL ACCIDENT – A waggoner, named MATTHEWS, in the employ of E. Saunders, Esq., was killed on Saturday by being knocked out of the waggon, when the horses, having taken fright, were running away with it, in a bye-lane, near the Old Tiverton-road turnpike-gage. At the Inquest held on the body a verdict was returned in accordance with the faces.
SUDDEN DEATH – An Inquest was held on Monday at the Plume of Feathers Inn, on the body of WILLIAM TURNER, a labourer in the employ of Mr Ward, of St David's station. It appeared that about a fortnight ago TURNER was attended by Mr Webb, surgeon, for a stomach complaint. He had quickly recovered, and resumed work as usual. On Saturday night, however, he called in to see his mother, a shopkeeper in the Lower Market; he again complained of his stomach, and expressed a fear that he should have to lie up. As he uttered these words he fell down insensible, and shortly after died. The medical evidence showed that deceased died of disease of the heart, and a verdict to that effect was returned. TURNER was received into the employ of Mr Ward's predecessors in 1844, and had worked there ever since.
Wednesday 26 August 1863, Issue 5079 – Gale Document No. Y3200704860
ILFRACOMBE – Last week a child, named MARY JANE BUDD, daughter of a ship carpenter, was placed near a bedroom window whilst her sister was dressing her. The window was closed, but not hasped, and the child leaned forward and fell through the window upon its head on the pavement below. The child died next day. The verdict at the Inquest was in accordance with the facts.
Wednesday 26 August 1863, Issue 5079 – Gale Document No. Y3200704878
ANOTHER BOY DROWNED – An Inquest was held on Tuesday at the Welcome Inn, before Mr Coroner Crosse, on the body of JOHN COLMAN, a youth aged fourteen years, drowned in the canal – verdict, "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 2 September 1863, Issue 5080 – Gale Document No. Y3200704901
TORQUAY – An Inquest was held at the Infirmary on Monday last week on the body of JOHN SHARLAND, who died from the effect of some trucks passing over him at Churston Ferrers. A verdict of Accidental Death was returned.
Wednesday 2 September 1863, Issue 5080 – Gale Document No. Y3200704892
THE MURDER AT NEWTON – The result of the adjourned Inquest held at Newton Abbot on Tuesday, upon the remains of JOHN MEARS, who was found dead under circumstances detailed in another column, was that the Jury returned a verdict that the deceased her been murdered by some person or persons unknown.
Wednesday 16 September 1863, Issue 5082 – Gale Document No. Y3200704953
NEWTON ABBOT – Inhumanity To A Dying Man. – Mr Cuming, Coroner, held an Inquest at South Knighton near Newton on Monday, on the body of JOHN MORTIMORE, labourer, employed by Mr Tripe, of Herebere Barton – the Inquest being held in consequence of rumours being afloat as to quarrels in deceased's house. The evidence went to show that there had been violent squabbles in the family between the deceased's sons and that the deceased had been neglected by his daughter who gave him no sustenance and declined to go for a doctor when asked to do so. Deceased's daughter-in—law and a Mrs Perkins alone saw to the deceased, whose son even took the bed from under his father. Dr Sparham, of Ashburton, medical officer for the district, who was asked in to attend deceased just before death, made a post mortem examination of the body (assisted by Mr Lyle), and he gave it as his opinion that deceased died from heart disease but might have been relieved if a doctor had attended him earlier. The Coroner severely censured the heartless conduct of the relatives of the deceased, and particularly the widow for not sooner calling in Dr Sparham. The Jury then returned the following verdict:- "That the deceased died suddenly of disease of the heart, accelerated by the emotion caused by violent quarrels in the family, and the Jury express their strong opinion that there was culpable neglect in the relatives of the deceased not sending earlier for medical attendance, and for violent conduct in taking the bed from under him whilst in a dying state."
Wednesday 23 September 1863, Issue 5083 – Gale Document No. Y3200704971
INQUEST – On Monday before R. R. Crosse, Esq., Coroner, an Inquest was held at the Welcome Inn, touching the death of THOMAS OSBORNE, who fell out of a boat in the canal on the previous Saturday, and was drowned. A verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
On Saturday morning an Inquest was held at the Black Horse Inn, Longbrook-street, before the City Coroner (H. W. Hooper, Eq.), on the body of FREDERICK SNELL, labourer, aged fifty-two. On Saturday morning about three o'clock, the deceased's wife was awoke by her husband's groans. She sent for Mr Perkins, surgeon, but before his arrival life was extinct. Verdict – "Death from Natural Causes."
Wednesday 23 September 1863, Issue 5083 – Gale Document No. Y3200704972
SIDBURY – Sudden Death. – Another instance of the uncertainty of life, happening not this time among the upper ten thousand as in the case of Sir F. Slade and Sir C. Creswell, occurred on Saturday morning last at Sidbury. The man in whose person the grand old proverb was exemplified on this occasion was JOHN PIGEON, a marine store dealer. He rose on Saturday in his usual state of health, and set off on business to the residence of Mr Bailey, but had not proceeded more than a hundred yards from his house than he dropped down lifeless. An Inquest was held, and a verdict returned of "Died by the Visitation of God."
Wednesday 7 October 1863, Issue 5085 – Gale Document No. Y3200705017
An Inquest was held on Monday at the New Ship Inn, St. David's-hill, before H. D. Barton, Esq., Deputy Coroner, on the body of FRANCIS CHARLES FLOUD, a printer and newsman, who died from suffocation on the previous morning. Deceased was a man of intemperate habits, and it was whilst in a state of intoxication he met his death by a portion of his food sticking in the windpipe. There is reason to suppose deceased was robbed previous to his being conveyed home.
On Friday evening a lad about twelve years of age named FRANCIS LANGFORD, who resided at Rockbeare, was returning from Exeter in company with a man named Joseph Spillar, of Clist Honiton with a cart filled with pigs, and when near Wonford-lane he endeavoured to place one foot on the footboard of the cart when he stumbled and fell to the ground; a wheel of the cart passed over his stomach and killed him. Mr R. R. Crosse, Coroner, held an Inquest at the Bridge Inn, Heavitree, and a verdict of "Accidental Death" was recorded.
Wednesday 7 October 1863, Issue 5085 – Gale Document No. Y3200705027
OTTERY ST. MARY – Inquest. – An Inquest was held on Friday last at the Half Moon Inn before Spencer M. Cox, Eq., Coroner, touching the death of the newly born illegitimate child of ELIZABETH WHITCOMBE. A post mortem of the body having been made by Dr Whitby and Mr Edwards, surgeon, and evidence adduced that death arose from natural causes, a verdict in accordance with the evidence was returned.
Wednesday 14 October 1863, Issue 5086 – Gale Document No. Y3200705046
EXETER – Suicide. – A young man named FREDERICK BEER, about twenty-three years of age, committed suicide on Saturday morning by taking oxalic acid. Deceased had been for the last two years in a very desponding state of mind, and had lately addicted himself to intemperate habits. He was a shoe maker by trade, and worked with a man named Tarr on Stepcote-hill, where he had resided for the past thirteen years. Deceased returned on the Friday night between twelve and one o'clock and was heard by Tarr to go to his bedroom; about seven o'clock Tarr heard some one groaning, and on going into BEER'S room deceased told him he had taken poison, and entreated him to send for a doctor. A neighbour immediately went for Mr Roper, who hearing the circumstance sent an antidote previous to going himself. The antidote was administered, but deceased was too far gone for it to take the desired effect, and he expired about half past seven. Mr Roper visited deceased about a quarter to eight, and found him quite dead. Deceased had just wetted the crystal of half an ounce of oxalic acid and made a paste with it, and then ate it with a spoon. At an Inquest held at the King's Arms, West-street, before H. D. Barton, Esq., Deputy Coroner, a verdict of "Temporary Insanity" was returned. Mr Barton asserted that that was the fifth Inquest he had held during the week.
Wednesday 21 October 1863, Issue 5087 – Gale Document No. Y3200705071
EXETER – On Thursday H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, held an Inquest at the Topsham Inn, South-street, Exeter, on the body of a farm labourer, aged thirty-three, named HENRY VILL, late in the employ of Mr Thomas Searle, Bellamarsh Mills, Kingsteignton, who on the 21st ult. had his arm so lacerated by a thrashing machine worked by water power, and against which he fell, that it was necessary that amputation should take place and the operation was successfully performed by Mr De la Garde. At the end of ten days however deceased's health gave way and he died on Wednesday morning. It was shown that deceased died from "praemia" and a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
SUICIDE AT IDE – Considerable consternation pervaded this retired and peaceful village yesterday afternoon, on the information that MR RUGG, of the Bridge Inn, had committed suicide. Upon Enquiry it was ascertained that MR RUGG had been seriously indisposed for several days, and that the state of his health had been a source of considerable anxiety to his friends. Yesterday morning he was very much excited and his conduct gave rise to great watchfulness. About three o'clock he went upstairs, and shortly afterwards a noise being heard some one went to his room, when he was found on the floor with his head nearly severed from his body. Medical assistance was immediately obtained, but before it could be of the slightest service, life was extinct.
Wednesday 28 October 1863, Issue 5088 – Gale Document No. Y3200705111
HATHERLEIGH – An Inquest was held on Wednesday morning last, at the New Inn, touching the death of JOHN HOOPER, the younger, son of MR JOHN HOOPER, "mine host" of the same inn, when the evidence of John Bowden and Wm. Worder, brewer, &c., went to show that the deceased was in the Brewhouse of the George hotel at play with Master Thomas Allan, son of Mrs Allan, of "The George" and Master Charles Luxton son of Mr Thomas Luxton, draper, &c., at about eight o'clock in the evening; that while at play in the Brewhouse, deceased stepped back and fell into the tub of hot beer which had only a few minutes previously been discharged from the copper; (the witness Bowden) immediately assisted to pull him out, and that deceased afterwards ran home. The scald was so severe about the body, arms and legs that the poor little fellow only survived the shock and injuries eighteen hours. Medical assistance was immediately procured. The Jury without the least hesitation returned a verdict of "Accidental Death." On Wednesday afternoon last, the funeral of the deceased JOHN HOOPER, who belonged to the band of the 18th D.V.R., took place, and although so young a member (ten years of age) has attended all the inspections, reviews, and drills where the Company were required, - at Haldon, Barnstaple or wherever the corps have been since its formation, there was "Little Jackey," as "big as the biggest," and as gay as the gayest, and like the "Fireman's dog," was a faithful attachÉ to the cause requiring his companions' presence. To do honour to so brave a little fellow his "companions in arms" decided to offer a last token of regard and respect to his memory, and accordingly the funeral was attended by an "escort" of the company preceding the body, with the band of the 18th D.V.R. in the rear, in marked time, playing "The Dead March in Saul." The afflicted parents, and brothers and sisters followed the corpse, with a very large attendance of relatives and friends. On the coffin was laid the cap, belt, and "triangle" (the instrument deceased played in the band); and when the coffin was brought into the street the volunteers formed a "lane," and stood at ease, with "arms reversed" for a few minutes, when the procession proceeded amidst hundreds of weeping eyes. At the church gate the volunteers against formed a "lane", and the solemn procession marched past into the church, where the sublime funeral service was impressively performed by the vicar (Rev. T. Phelps). At the grave the volunteers were formed, "in line," with "arms reversed," until the completion of the service, and a touching address was delivered from the respected vicar, when "present arms, and shoulder" was the order, and then marched off to the bands playing "Home Sweet Home." The scene was of the most imposing effect and will long be remembered by all who witnessed the ceremony with deep feelings of solemnity.
Wednesday 18 November 1863, Issue 5091 – Gale Document No. Y3200705173
On Wednesday Mr R. R. Crosse, Coroner, held an Inquest at Harris's Welcome Inn, Haven Banks, on the body of ROBERT POWLESLAND, a soldier. Deceased had served in the 9th Regiment of Foot through all the chief engagements of the Peninsular war. He was old, infirm, and suffered from a disorder, and it appeared that he must have fallen, as he was found insensible on Monday morning. He was always well attended to by his family. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
H.W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, held an Inquest at the Valiant Soldier Inn, on Friday, on the body of WM. JOHN HILL, aged seventeen. Mr J. A. Huxley, house surgeon, of the Devon and Exeter Hospital, stated that deceased was suffering from a disease in his shoulder, which rendered amputation of the arm advisable. The deceased's mother objected to, and the youth left the hospital. In ten days, however the tumour grew to such an extent that amputation became imperative, and deceased died on Thursday, from exhaustion produced by the return of the gangrenous growth. The Jury returned a verdict according to the facts.
Wednesday 18 November 1863, Issue 5091 – Gale Document No. Y3200705185
HATHERLEIGH – A Coroner's Inquest was held on Friday last touching the death of JAMES EDWARDS, carpenter. It appears deceased was upon a ladder at Reed House cleaning the water shoots at a height of about twenty-five feet when he fell down and received such a concussion and injury that the poor fellow lingered in great pain until Thursday morning. From the evidence of Wm. Luxton, who was steadying the ladder, it appeared that deceased was seized with a fit which was the cause of the fall; that he turned head foremost over the ladder and pitched upon his head on the pleasure ground causing a depression as deep and hollow as a basin. Verdict – Accidental Death.
Wednesday 25 November 1863, Issue 5092 – Gale Document No. Y3200705201
FATAL AFFRAY AT TORRINGTON. – On the 11th instant there was a disturbance at Kingscott, St. Giles, when a man named ELI LONGMAN, received such severe injuries as terminated in death on Monday night. An Inquest will be held today, and in the meantime two men – John Pincombe, of Woolleigh Mill, Beaford, and Joseph Sussex, of High Buller, St. Giles – have been apprehended, charged with having inflicted the injuries which led to LONGMAN'S death.
Wednesday 2 December 1863, Issue 5093 – Gale Document No. Y3200705239
TORRINGTON – The Late Outrage near Torrington. – An Inquest on the body of ELI LONGMAN was commenced on Thursday before J. H. Toller, Esq. The evidence as to the injuries inflicted was deposed as follows by Wm. Thorne, who said deceased was his fellow servant; on the 11th November he and deceased went hunting together about three o'clock in the afternoon, they went to the Rolle Arms Inn, at Kingscott, John Pincombe, Joseph Sussex, Charles Davey, Richard Trigger, and others were also there during the afternoon, some aggravation and quarrelling took place between Trigger and deceased, and they went outside to fight. Pincombe and himself with others then went out and the fight was prevented. Between seven and eight o'clock he (witness) with LONGMAN (the deceased), Charles Davey, and others, left the public house to go home. Pincombe overtook them at the cross way, and said to deceased "Are you a man for me?" Deceased said "No." Pincombe then knocked him (deceased) down, and as he was rising Pincombe went to strike him again, when deceased stooped down and Pincombe fell over him. When they got up deceased told Pincombe he would summon him. Pincombe then knocked deceased down and kicked him where he lay. Charles Davey then interfered, and Pincombe tried to strike Davey. Joseph Sussex then came and struck deceased as he was rising. Richard Sussex and his son then came out of their house and parted them, deceased again told Pincombe he would summon him. Pincombe again kicked deceased three times, and deceased kicked Pincombe once. Witness afterwards found deceased leaning against a stone fence, when he said to witness, "Oh, Willie, Willie, they've all but killed me. They've kicked me they don't know where." Witness took deceased home to Mr Voddens, and on the road he complained of injuries he had received in his right arm, legs, and jaws. After they came home he washed deceased's wounds and got him to bed, and the next morning deceased went to Torrington. Other witnesses deposed to similar facts, and the Inquest was adjourned.
Wednesday 9 December 1863, Issue 5094 – Gale Document No. Y3200705267
BARNSTAPLE – Sudden Death. – JOHN HEAL, an elderly man, died suddenly at the Turf Tavern on Saturday. He complained of feeling cold, but was apparently in his usual state of health. He made a good tea, afterwards drank some beer, then went into the back yard, and there died. The Inquest upon the body resulted in a verdict of died from apoplexy.
Wednesday 16 December 1863, Issue 5095 – Gale Document No. Y3200705282
EXETER – An Inquest was held on Monday at the Port Royal Inn, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., Coroner, on the body of JOHN DOWNEY, aged sixty-one, who was found in the river, near the Trew's Weir Paper Mills, on the previous Sunday morning by a man named Robert Fay, engaged at the mills. The deceased, with his son, SAMUEL DOWNEY, had resided at the house of Mr Daleglish, James-street, for more than twelve months, and on the 23rd of November the deceased, who has of late been suffering from mental disorganisation, was more than usually excitable, and in the night he left his bed, desired to be allowed a candle to write some letters, and made other strange requests, which startled his son, who slept in the same room, and he asked his father why he made himself so eccentric. About four o'clock in the morning when he again got out of his bed and determined upon leaving the house he informed his son that he was going to a Mr Maize, a relative, residing on the Friars, upon which statement he was allowed to go, but was quickly followed by his son, who found that he had not been at Mr Maize, nor could his whereabouts be ascertained. The deceased had not been seen from that time till the body was discovered in the water. Medical evidence went to prove that the deceased had received contusions on the head, which might have been occasioned by his falling into the river. The body was in a very decomposed state and greatly discoloured, having the appearance of being in the water for more than a fortnight. The Jury returned an open verdict of "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 16 December 1863, Issue 5095 – Gale Document No. Y3200705277
OKEHAMPTON – MR GEORGE BROCK, landlord of the London Inn, has committed suicide. Deceased was in difficulties; and whilst a sheriff's officer was on the premises waiting for the claims of a creditor or to take the landlord into custody, MR BROCK went into his bedroom and discharged the contents of a gun into his chest. He survived for four hours. He was sixty years old; leaves a wife and six children. The Jury, at the Inquest upon the body, returned a verdict of "Temporary Insanity."
Wednesday 23 December 1863, Issue 5096 – Gale Document No. Y3200705308
EXETER – An Inquest was held on Monday at the Topsham Inn before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of GEORGE MURPHY, aged fifty-four, who died in the Hospital from the effects of an accident. Deceased was a farm labourer, in the employ of Mr Rew, Whipton, and whilst engaged in cutting chaff in the stable had occasion to go on his knees when a horse shoe nail penetrated the knee. Some time afterwards he was conveyed to the hospital, but an abscess formed on the knee from the effects of which he died. A verdict of Accidental Death was returned.
Wednesday 30 December 1863, Issue 5097 – Gale Document No. Y3200705342
EXETER – Fatal Accident. – An Inquest was held at the Blue Boar Inn, Magdalen-street, on Monday, on the body of WILLIAM WILKES, about fourteen years of age, who met with severe injuries by falling from a pile of bags, twelve feet high, at the glue manufactory of Mr Bromfill, Haven-road, St Thomas, on Wednesday last. It appeared that the deceased was at play with other boys in the factory during breakfast time, and fell from the bags to the ground with his right leg turned underneath him, causing partial dislocation of the knee. After the accident he walked to his residence in Bartholomew-street, a distance of nearly a mile, and from there he was taken to the Hospital, where Mr Huxley, the house surgeon, applied the usual remedies, but without avail. He died on Saturday morning from the effects of the shock and exhaustion. A verdict of "Accidental death" was returned.
Wednesday 30 December 1863, Issue 5097 – Gale Document No. Y3200705336
BARNSTAPLE – Garland's Currier's Arms Inn, Derby, was the scene of a fatality on Friday evening. MR JOSEPH DREWE, a person respectably connected, but whose eccentricity and occasional intoxication have made him a "character," has for some time lodged at the Currier's Arms. He ate a hearty dinner on Christmas day, but an hour afterwards became unwell. He left the house but returned early in the evening. He was then much depressed and began to cry. Mrs Garland asked him what was the matter, and to this inquiry he simply said he would go to bed. The landlord then assisted him into bed, but very soon after leaving the bedroom Mr Garland heard his lodger walking in his bedroom. Mr Garland went at once to the bedroom and found MR DREWE dressing himself – saying he wouldn't go to bed until the landlord's son (who had slept with him) came home. The lodger preceded the landlord, who remained in the room to turn off the gas; and on getting at the top of the stairs MR DREWE fell over them. Mr Fernie, surgeon, was immediately in attendance; but the poor fellow died a few hours afterwards from internal haemorrhage, produced by a fracture of the base of the skull. The Coroner's Inquest upon the body resulted in a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 6 January 1864, Issue 5098 – Gale Document No. Y3200705368
SUICIDE BY A MARRIED WOMAN. – EMMA COCK, wife of BENJAMIN COCK, shipwright in the Dockyard at Devonport, committed suicide on New Year's eve. Returning from the midnight service at St. Mary's Church the husband found his wife suspended from a beam in the ceiling of the back kitchen. He severed the cord at once, removed his wife to her bedroom, and sent for medical assistance; but it was the opinion of Mr De La Rue, surgeon, that she had been dead some considerable time. The verdict at the Inquest was "Temporary Insanity."
Wednesday 13 January 1864, Issue 5099 – Gale Document No. Y3200705392
EXETER – A fatal accident occurred on Wednesday to a child named EMMA SOPHIA BRAUND, who died from the effects of injuries received from burning. Deceased was the daughter of a tailor residing in Gandy-street, and on the day in question went to the Wesleyan School in the Mint. Owing to the severity of the weather she, with several other children, remained during the dinner hour, and her dinner was sent to her. Deceased and four or five others about the same age were in a class room playing with the fire, and whilst attempting to tie a piece of lighted paper to another's apron string accidentally ignited her own clothes and rushed screaming from the room. Her cries alarmed Mr Best, the chapel keeper, who went to her assistance, and immediately wrapped a rug round the child and extinguished the flames, but not before such injuries had been sustained as to cause death. The child lingered until the following day, when she died about seven o'clock in the evening. An Inquest was held at the Anchor Inn, Paul-street, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, when a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
Wednesday 20 January 1864, Issue 5100 – Gale Document No. Y3200705424
NEWTON – "Accidental Death" has been recorded in the case of THOMAS RICHARD BRYANT, aged fifteen months, of the parish of St. Nicholas. The sister (a mere child herself) of the deceased was playing in the street; a timber waggon passed, and the little girl was in the act of placing her brother on one of the pieces of timber, when the hind wheel of the wagons truck the girl's arm, and knocked the child from her. The wheel passed over the child's head, and of course caused its instant death.
CULLOMPTON – An Inquest was held at the Poncheydown Inn, Kentisbeare, on Saturday, before S. M. Cox, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a little girl, six years of age, named ELIZABETH ROOKLEY, the daughter of a labourer. Deceased fell into the fire on the previous Tuesday and severely burnt her arms and other portions of the body, but the injuries were not such as gave cause for alarm. On the following Thursday the child appeared very ill and a surgeon was sent for, but ere he arrived she had expired. The evidence of the surgeon showed that deceased died from the shock occasioned by the accident and a verdict of Accidental Death, was returned.
Wednesday 27 January 1864, Issue 5101 – Gale Document No. Y3200705451
PLYMOUTH – SARAH DUNN, aged 27, has drowned herself in the ladies' bathing-place under the Hoe. Deceased (a native of Somerset) was a domestic servant – had been laid up for eleven weeks in a fever; and since her illness she had exhibited signs of imbecility. She was out of a situation – was staying at her sister-in-law's – went to seek a situation, which she did not obtain, and her relatives saw no more of her till her body was discovered on the beach. The Jury at the Inquest considered the deceased drowned herself while in a state of Unsound Mind.
MORETONHAMPSTEAD – An Inquest was held on Saturday by F. B. Cuming, Esq., the County Coroner, on the body of WILLIAM COX, who had been taken into custody on the previous night for stealing a smock frock from a lad named Taylor. The deceased was seen alive in the cell at eleven o'clock. On the policeman visiting the cell at twelve o'clock he found that the deceased ad tied his belt and a woollen "comforter" together and suspended himself by them to the bars of his cell. A verdict of Felo de se was returned.
Wednesday 27 January 1864, Issue 5101 – Gale Document No. Y3200705441
EXETER – Two Inquests were held on Thursday at the Valiant Soldier Inn before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, the first on the body of a young man named HENRY BUCKINGHAM who died in the Hospital from the effects of injuries he received by the horse on which he was riding coming in contact with a coal cart.
The second on the body of a child named MARGARET JANE WILLS, who it is supposed caught her clothes on fire whilst playing with the candle in the absence of her mother from the room. The Jury returned a verdict of Accidental Death in each case.
Wednesday 3 February 1864, Issue 5102 – Gale Document No. Y3200705477
PLYMOUTH – An Inquest was held on Saturday at the Military Hospital Inn, Stoke, before A. B. Bone, Esq., on the body of ALFRED SALE, an artilleryman, who died after eating some muscles. It appeared that SALE, who was a married man, and lived out of barracks, purchased for his tea on Thursday evening a pennyworth of muscles from Mary Ann Blake, a Saltash fishwoman. He ate them, and soon afterwards went to the quarters of his corps – the new Granby Barracks – and complained to the surgeon, Dr Mould, that he was very ill. He was left for the night, no suspicion being felt that there was anything serious the matter, but on the orderly coming to his bed on the following morning to wake him for breakfast he was found dead – and had evidently been so several hours. A post mortem examination disclosed nothing to account for death, and a verdict of "Died from eating muscles" was returned.
Wednesday 3 February 1864, Issue 5102 – Gale Document No. Y3200705479
TIVERTON – On Wednesday morning the town was thrown into considerable excitement by a report that MR GEORGE DUNN COBLEY, draper, had died by his own hand, a report which was too sadly confirmed. It appeared from the evidence adduced at the Inquest, held before F. Mackenzie, Esq., Coroner, that the deceased had been for some days past confined to his room through indisposition and that on Tuesday some strange delusions had laid hold of his mind. He sat up with his sister and his assistant, Mr Henry Davey, until about two o'clock on Wednesday morning when he left the room, and Mr Davey heard MR COBLEY shut his bedroom door and immediately followed him, when he found him on his knees with his throat cut with a razor, which had unhappily been left on the dressing table. Mr Reed, surgeon, was immediately called, but life was extinct as he could have survived only a few minutes. The Jury returned a verdict of "Temporary Insanity." MR COBLEY was an old established tradesman of the town, a member of the Town Council, and one of the Improvement Commissioners, and was widely and deservedly respected.
Wednesday 24 February 1864, Issue 5105, Gale Document No. Y3200705560
PLYMOUTH – ROBERT ELLIOTT, a fisherman, of Yealm, left his house on the 13th of January to pursue his avocation. The same day the boat was found bottom upwards, and on Saturday last ELLIOTT'S body was picked up half-a-mile from the Mewstone by George Bond, a waterman. An Inquest was held on Saturday evening at the Plymouth Guildhall, when the Jury returned a verdict of "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 2 March 1864, Issue 5106 – Gale Document No. Y3200705576
EXETER – Painful Suicide. – An Inquest was held at the Welcome Inn, on the Haven Banks, on Friday, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., Coroner, on the body of JOHN KNOWLES, a gardener, residing in Paris-street. Deceased was about thirty-one years of age and had formerly belonged to the police force, but had latterly been out of employment. Last Tuesday he had a party of friends at his house, and having partaken rather freely of liquor he retired to rest at an early hour. He rose at daybreak on the following morning, and after kissing his wife and one of the children wished them good morning and left the house. His wife took no particular notice, supposing that he was going for a walk. At half-past six the same morning he had nine pennyworth of raw gin at the Custom House Inn, near the Quay, and asked the landlord (Mr Yeo) what time the ferryman came, as he wished to cross. Mr Yeo told him he would arrive shortly, and deceased left. He was subsequently seen at the top of Paris-street by a dairyman named Martin. At a later hour the mate of the Maria found a hat under the end of the swing bridge leading to Salmon Pool. The hat was identified by the wife of the deceased. Mr Hare, of Paris-street, immediately had the canal dragged, and the body was found in about fourteen feet of water, near Salmon Pool. The Jury returned a verdict of "Found Drowned."
SUDDEN DEATH – On Monday the City Coroner held an Inquest at the Poltimore Inn, St. Sidwell's, touching the death of a maiden lady, named AMELIA ANN BIRCH, who had recently been residing with her sister, MRS RUSSELL, of St. Sidwell's. It appears for some time past deceased had been suffering from disease of the hart, frequently complaining of shortness of breath. On Sunday she was confined to her bed and at about one o'clock one of her relatives took her a basin of broth, which she drank. Soon afterwards a neighbour, Mrs Gordon, went to see her, when she was lying in bed apparently lifeless. Mr Land, surgeon, was called in, and on his arrival he pronounced life to be extinct; he had known the family for five years and gave it as his opinion that the cause of death was disease of the heart. The Jury returned a verdict that deceased had died from disease of the heart.
Wednesday 9 March 1864, Issue 5107 – Gale Document No. Y3200705614
PAIGNTON – Mr Jones, ironmonger, of Torquay, and one WILLIAM FURZE were upset whilst riding in a gig on the Paignton road. FURZE was killed on the spot, and the Jury at the Inquest returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
AXMINSTER – An Inquest was held at the George Hotel on Monday, before Robert Brent, Esq., M.D., Deputy Coroner, on the body of JAMES FRENCH, late sexton of the parish church, who committed suicide. After a long Inquiry the Jury returned a verdict of Temporary Insanity, brought on by drink and excitement.
KINGSBRIDGE – An Inquest was held at Elston Farm, Churchstowe, on Wednesday, before F. B. Cuming, Esq., on the body of WILLIAM HURRELL, fourteen years of age, who was accidentally shot on the previous Monday. In the morning of that day Mr Herbert Luscombe placed a loaded gun on a rack in the stable, having first taken off the cap. After dinner deceased and another lad named Johns, went to the stable, and just afterwards Johns came running out, crying, "HURRELL is dead." Messrs. Luscombe entered the stable, and found the deceased lying on his back quite dead; the charge had entered his neck and broken the spine. Johns stated that HURRELL climbed up on the hay and began handling the gun, and presently it exploded, and HURRELL fell. Mr F. S. Cornish, surgeon, was of opinion that death was instantaneous, and that the deceased could not have held the gun in such a way as to inflict the wound of which he died. The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased died from a shot wound, but how caused, there was not sufficient evidence to show.
PLYMOUTH – A Drunkard's Death. – An Inquest was held on Friday at the White Lion Inn, King-street, Devonport, on the body of WILLIAM ROBERTSON, aged forty-five, a seaman pensioner, who since the death of his wife – nine months ago – had abandoned himself to intemperate habits. On Tuesday last deceased met with a female acquaintance named Elizabeth Knowles, the wife of a seaman, in Cornwall-street. He went to her house to tea, where he spent a "jovial" evening, after which he retired to his own residence, accompanied by his female friend, who stopped with him all night. At five o'clock in the morning they got up, and visited a public house, where they remained until ten o'clock. They then proceeded to Plymouth, where he received his pension. Later in the day deceased was driven home in a cab, and when getting out of the vehicle close to his own house he fell upon his face and was taken up insensible. He was carried into his bed, where he was found dead on the following morning. The Jury returned a verdict to the effect that death was caused by intoxication, the effect of which was accelerated by the injuries received from the fall.
Wednesday 16 March 1864, Issue 5108 – Gale Document No. Y3200705623
TORQUAY – Suicides. – An Inquest was held on Thursday morning at the Townhall, before F. B. Cuming, Esq., on the body of PHILLIPPA TONKIN, a married woman, about thirty-two years of age, who had committed suicide by hanging herself about one o'clock on Tuesday afternoon. The deceased was living as servant at the Devon and Cornwall Bank, Torquay, and had not lived with her husband for ten years. No unusual appearances were observed in the deceased's demeanour previous to her committing the rash act.
Another Inquest was then held on the body of THOMAS BODLEY, aged fifty-seven, who committed suicide on the previous day (Wednesday). The deceased, who had been in the employ of Mr W. A. Goss, builder, Ellacombe, has been in ill health for some time, and was living in Pimlico. A verdict to the effect that the deceased committed suicide while in a state of insanity was given in each case.
Wednesday 23 March 1864, Issue 5109 – Gale Document No. Y3200705652
EXETER – An Inquest was held at the workhouse on Monday on the body of JAMES MUTTER, aged sixty-one, who died suddenly on Sunday. The medical testimony proved that apoplexy was the cause of death, and the Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 30 March 1864, Issue 5110 – Gale Document No. Y3200705672
EXETER – An Inquest was held at the Black Lion Inn on Saturday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., touching the death of MARY GERTRUDE, the infant daughter of MR LAWLESS, wine merchant, of South-street. It appeared that on the 18th inst., while the deceased (who was one year and eleven months old) was sitting at the breakfast-table she emptied a basin of hot milk over herself. She died from the effects of the scalds on the 25th. A verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned.
A melancholy instance of the uncertainty of human life occurred in St. Sidwell's on Saturday morning, in the sudden death of MR WILLIAM H. DANIEL, aged thirty-four, a clerk at the city bank. Deceased was leaving his home in St. James's at quarter past eight, but before quitting the passage he fell on his back. His wife hearing a noise hastened to the spot and spoke to deceased who made no answer and died in a few moments. Mr Woodman, surgeon was called in, but found life extinct, and attributed the cause of death to a fit of apoplexy or a rupture of a vessel in the head. An Inquest was held at the George and Dragon Inn before W. H. Hooper, Esq., and a verdict returned according to the medical testimony.
Wednesday 6 April 1864, Issue 5110 – Gale Document No. Y3200705697
EXETER – An Inquest was held at the Red Lion Inn on Friday, before H. Hooper, Esq., touching the death of ELIZABETH WOLLOCOTT. Deceased was a young married woman, living at St. Sidwell, and was near her confinement. On Wednesday morning she went to her bed room for temporary rest, fell off the bed and was picked up dead. Mr Woodman, who was speedily in attendance, gave his opinion, that she died from apoplexy. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died from the Visitation of God."
Wednesday 6 April 1864, Issue 5110 – Gale Document No. Y3200705693
TEIGNMOUTH – A young man named WILLIAM PHILLIPS, a sailor, on Wednesday night whilst as is supposed he was in the act of reaching after a boat at the old Quay, missed his footing and fell into the water and was drowned. He was picked up on the following morning. An Inquest has been held on the body.
Wednesday 20 April 1864, Issue 5112 – Gale Document No. Y3200705745
EXETER – Melancholy Death By Drowning. – Yesterday afternoon an Inquest was held at the Welcome Inn, Haven Banks, before R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner, on the body of MR JAMES PRATT, managing clerk to H. W. Hooper, Esq. It appears that early on Monday morning a number of young men hired two boats at the Port Royal Inn, and five manned one boat and three another. They proceeded to Double locks to train for a match which was contemplated during the present week. On returning the lead was taken by the boat which contained the deceased, Mr Nathaniel Leary, surveyor, and Mr Thomas Dunn, clerk. On nearing the bridge opposite Mrs Newton's they were closely over-hauled by the four-oared boat, and in order to allow her to pass the steersman, Mr Leary, directed the deceased and Mr Dunn to "backwater," intending to steer towards the stonework of the bridge to avoid a collision. His order, however, was not obeyed, and instead of backing water deceased raised his oar and made a thrust at the bridge and thus capsized the boat, and the occupants were thrown into the canal. Leary, although an excellent swimmer, found that he could not swim with his coat on, and was therefore obliged to "paddle," and thus succeeded in reaching the bridge, but here he made three unsuccessful attempts to obtain a "hold." At length he fixed his fingers in a crevice. He then threw out his legs and kicked Dunn, who was going down the second time, but who immediately seized Leary's legs with a death grip. He then got upon Leary's shoulders, but the latter fearing that he should not be able to bear him with so much of his body out of the water, at length succeeded in inducing him to release his tenacious grasp and lower himself a little. Leary then turned round and saw the deceased – who had previously been, as it were, standing upright in the water, go down. He could not have saved him, and if he had endeavoured to do so he might have lost his own life and sacrificed Dunn's. He called aloud for assistance and the crew of the four-oared boat, who had unshipped their oars in order to pass through the bridge, pulled to the bank on the other side of the bridge and came t their help. A man, named Charles Skeynes, who was driving a horse on the banks, also came to their assistance in a boat and dragged the body out of the water with a boat-hook. A quarter of an hour having elapsed it was supposed that the deceased was quite dead, and very little efforts were made to restore animation. The body was placed in a boat and towed behind a barge, drawn by a horse, to the Welcome Inn, where Mr Farrant, surgeon, was speedily in attendance, but as half-an-hour had intervened from the time of the accident, all his endeavours were fruitless. All the witnesses at the Inquest agreed that no blame was attached to any one excepting the unfortunate deceased, whose life would have been saved had he obeyed the directions of Leary, who is an experienced boatman, and adopted the wisest course which could have been adopted under the circumstances, as if he had not steered for the stonework in all probability there would have been a collision between the two boats, and the occupants of both would have been precipitated into the canal. The deceased could swim but very little and Dunn not at all. It is singular that the deceased was not seen to rise again – a fact which was accounted for by the supposition that he was suffocated by remaining on the surface some seconds with his head almost wholly immersed. One of the jurymen – Mr Harris, "an old tar," said that the boat which was capsized was not fit for a duck to be put in much less a Christian; but Leary stated that although she was very light and crank, yet she was perfectly safe. One f the jurymen very properly suggested that more endeavours should have been made to restore animation immediately that the body was recovered. The Jury without any hesitation returned a verdict of "Accidental Death." Mr H. W. Hooper at the close of the Enquiry bore testimony to the good character and gentlemanly bearing of the deceased, remarking that he had been connected with him three years, and a more estimable person in every relation of life it was impossible to conceive, and his death was deeply deplored by all who knew him. It is a remarkable fact that on the day preceding his death deceased sketched out his will in pencil, remarking to his landlord, Mr Radford, of Paris-street, that as he was going boating he "didn't know what might happen." Deceased's father, who lives at Atherstone, near Tamworth, was at the Inquest, and appeared deeply affected.
Wednesday 27 April 1864, Issue 5113 – Gale Document No. Y3200705777
CORYTON – Fatal Accident. – An Inquest was held by H. A. Vallack, Esq., at Coryton Parsonage, on Friday the 15th instant, on the body of ROBERT DAVEY, a labourer, in the employ of the Rev. W. S. Newman. Deceased was employed in carting turnips from a field. It is supposed that on the previous day the horse ran away, as it was seen by some railway labourers crossing Kit-Knowle bridge (about a quarter of a mile from the field where DAVEY was working) with an empty cart. They ran up and found the unfortunate man lying on the road, he was still alive but insensible with a severe wound in his head: he died in about an hour. A verdict of Accidental Death was retuned. DAVEY was an industrious man and bore an excellent character. He leaves a widow and several children. We observe that the rector and others have commenced a subscription to assist the widow into a small way of business so that she may be the better able to maintain her youthful family.
Wednesday 4 May 1864, Issue 5114 – Gale Document No. Y3200705791
DEATH BY DROWNING – An Inquest was held at the Horse and Groom Inn, Heavitree, on Thursday, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner, on the body of FREDERIC MURTON PARMINTER, a child about seven years of age, the son of the REV. G. H. PARMINTER, of Heavitree Park, who was drowned in a cess-pool on Tuesday evening. The child was observed playing in the garden about seven o'clock that evening, but was lost sight of for an hour. About eight o'clock an elder brother was sent in search of him, and after some time discovered his body lying in the cess-pool. It is supposed that the unfortunate boy went to the pit to draw water for watering the flowers, and accidentally fell in. The Jury returned a verdict of "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 18 May 1864, Issue 5116 – Gale Document No. Y3200705838
EXETER – Last week a child named JANE AGNES TURNER, aged sixteen months, whose parents reside in Skinner's-cottages, Prince's-road, was accidentally killed. The child was playing in the road, and a man named Charles Pearse, in the employ of Mr Kemp, miller, Bonhay, was driving a horse with a cartload of flour, and not exercising sufficient caution, he drove over the helpless infant. At the Inquest, held at the Papermaker's Inn, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., a verdict of "Accidental Death" was returned, but the negligence of Pearse was severely censured.
Wednesday 22 June 1864, Issue 5120 – Gale Document No. Y3200705949
EXETER – An Inquest was held on Monday before W. H. Hooper, Esq., on the body of an illegitimate child of ANN HUNT. The deceased was not kept by its mother, but by another woman, who on Saturday last, whilst feeding it, heard it make a noise in its throat, and shortly afterwards it expired. The child had been ill of thrush previously. Mr Perkins, surgeon, said he believed the cause of death to be an inward spasm. The surgeon, was requested by the Coroner, to make a post mortem examination, and the Inquest was adjourned until today Wednesday.
An Inquest was held at the Barnstaple Inn on Thursday on the body of a carpenter, named GEORGE JARVIS, who had died suddenly from the rupture of a blood vessel on the previous day. A verdict of "Died by the Visitation of God" was returned. Deceased leaves a wife and two children.
Wednesday 13 July 1864, Issue 5123 – Gale Document No. Y3200706019
EXETER – An Inquest was held yesterday at the Paper Makers' Arms, Exe-street, on the body of a boy, aged twelve years, named SAMUEL MOORE. It appears that the deceased on the previous day went to bathe in the river Exe, near the Head Weir, although unable to swim, and getting into deep water was accidentally drowned. The mother of the deceased was a widow whose husband (a labourer) died only a fortnight since leaving her with four children. Verdict – "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 27 July 1864, Issue 5125 – Gale Document No. Y3200706072
EXETER – An Inquest was held on Thursday at the Blue Boar Inn, Magdalen-street, on the body of GEORGE ELLIOT, aged 37, who, while working in a ditch at Sidmouth, fell and injured his spine. He was conveyed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where he died on Sunday. Verdict – "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 10 August 1864, Issue 5127 – Gale Document No. Y3200706126
EXETER – Suicide Of A Woman In King Street. – A fearful suicide was committed on Thursday evening by a woman named ELIZABETH SQUIRES, who lived with her father, MR PHILLIPS, of the Wellington Inn, King-street. It appeared from the evidence given at the Coroner's Inquest, that the unfortunate woman, who is thirty-six years of age, had been separated from her husband for the last six years. On Thursday she had been drinking freely, and went to bed intoxicated at eleven o'clock, one of her children sleeping in her bed. Between twelve and one o'clock MR PHILLIPS (her father) heard a scream, and on entering her room found that his daughter was attempting to kill her child by throwing it out of the window. The deceased must have been suffering from delirium tremens. MR PHILLIPS got the child from her, and took it downstairs to his wife, but unfortunately took no precautions to secure the mother. He had scarcely left the room when she called out "Murder." A policeman, hearing this, and seeing her at the window, asked her why she called for assistance, and she replied "for protection room those below." She then got on the window sill and jumped out into the street. She was instantly picked up and conveyed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where it was discovered that she had fractured her skull. She only lingered two hours, and expired. One of the witnesses, named Emma Tucker, who lives opposite MR PHILLIPS' house, said she was awakened by the cries of "Murder," and heard MR PHILLIPS say, "You have robbed me day and night, and I have found you out." The child also cried out, "You have killed mother." This was corroborated by other neighbours who were similarly disturbed. MR PHILLIPS, however, denied that he had used these words, and that he had had any angry words with his daughter. The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased committed suicide while in a state of Temporary Insanity.
Wednesday 31 August 1864, Issue 5125 – Gale Document No. Y3200706213
APPLEDORE – Medical testimony is at variance respecting the cause of the death of ELIZABETH FISHER. Deceased was twenty-five years of age, subject to epileptic fits, and resided with her parents. It is alleged that one morning, whilst suffering from fits, the young woman fell upon a vessel in her bed room, and thereby cut her throat to such an extent as to cause her death. Loud screams were heard issuing from FISHER'S house, and when a neighbour went in she found the deceased, semi-nude, lying at the top of the stairs on a mat, with the mother bent over her prostrated daughter. The neighbour said, "Why, she's dead;" but the mother replied, "I've seen her longer in a fit than this." The daughter, however, was then dead. The singularity of the death became a topic – evil thoughts suggested foul play; and there was an Inquest. Thereat Mr Edward Pratt gave it as his opinion that the wound in the throat of the deceased could not have been occasioned as represented, but must have been done by some sharp-cutting instrument. Dr Budd maintained an entirely opposite opinion – he had matched the broken piece of the vessel and found it to correspond to the size and shape of the wound. The Inquest was adjourned to admit of the attendance of the mother, who was too unwell to attend when the Coroner's Inquisition first sat.
Wednesday 7 September 1864, Issue 5126 – Gale Document No. Y3200706233
EXETER – Mr W. H. Hooper held an Inquest on Saturday upon the body of THOMAS RATCLIFFE, aged fifty-five, a lumper. On Wednesday the deceased was engaged on board the Tonio, an Italian vessel, then lying in the Bight. He was in the hold fastening the sacks of corn, which were being hoisted upon the deck. One of them, however, was not firmly secured by the "snodder," and when nearly on the deck slipped away and fell on the poor fellow. He was removed to the Devon and Exeter hospital, where he died on Friday. Verdict "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 14 September 1864, Issue 5127 – Gale Document No. Y3200706270
BIDEFORD – There lived at Bideford one THOMAS COLEMAN, a marine store dealer. He was charged with stealing some wool from the Torridge Inn, but the evidence was imperfect. He was subsequently taken into custody for receiving the wool knowing it to have been stolen – he himself implicating the person who had stolen it. COLEMAN stated that the wool had been stolen from Major Wren and not from Mr Hutchings. He was lodged in the police cell, and there hung himself. Mr J. L. Pridham held an Inquest upon the body, and the Jury returned a verdict to the effect that there was no satisfactory evidence to show the state of his mind at the time COLEMAN hung himself.
Wednesday 14 September 1864, Issue 5127 – Gale Document No. Y3200706262
INQUEST – On Friday evening an Inquest was commenced on view of the body of JOHN SUTTON, a waiter, sixty-eight years of age, who died on the previous Thursday, as it was alleged, from the effects of a blow he received on the 2nd of August. Deceased was returning by train from Starcross, whither he had been assisting at the Courtenay Arms. In the same carriage was a young gentleman named Arscott and two others. An altercation took place between SUTTON and Arscott, when the latter struck the former a blow on the forehead. This produced discoloration of the eyes, but did not prevent SUTTON from following his calling. A few days ago, however, unfavourable symptoms supervened, and medical aid was procured, but the poor fellow died, as before stated, last Thursday. Mr J. L. De la Gard, who attended him, attributed death to the effusion of fluid into the pericardium, and said that death was accelerated by the bow he had received. The Jury deemed a post mortem examination necessary, and the Inquest was adjourned for that purpose.
Wednesday 14 September 1864, Issue 5127 – Gale Document No. Y3200706271
BOVEY TRACEY – MRS SUSAN DAYMENT, wife of a farmer at Chudleigh, drowned herself and child in the river Bovey on Saturday afternoon. The deceased had been suffering from depression of spirits ever since the birth of her last child, about three months ago. She was on a visit to her brother, MR JOHN PETHERBRIDGE, farmer, of Little Bovey, for change of air. She ate a hearty dinner and went out with her brother, who went to one of his fields to dig potatoes. MRS DAYMENT left her brother and took a walk over a marsh, where she was seen by Samuel Carpenter, who asked her if the child was poorly? She said it was poorly, and that she was very poorly herself. He said, "Yes, you look so, ma'am," and then left her walking up and down by the side of the river. In the evening her body was taken out of the river, and when the corpse was lifted the body of the infant floated from beneath the unfortunate woman. The Jury at the Inquest returned a verdict that the deceased were found drowned without any marks of violence on their bodies, and there was no evidence to show how she came into the water.
Wednesday 21 September 1864, Issue 5128 – Gale Document No. Y3200706287
EXETER – Mr H. W. Hooper held an Inquest at the Bishop Blaize Inn on Friday upon the body of ANN CROOK, aged seventy-six. Deceased lived in the Commercial-road, and on the preceding Tuesday morning she was found at the bottom of the stairs with the mark of a severe blow on her head. She lived for two days after. It was presumed that the poor old woman had had a fainting fit and fell down stairs. Verdict accordingly.
An Inquest was held yesterday at the Topsham Inn, South-street, on the body of JOHN TOTTERDELL, about sixty-six years of age, in the employ of Mr Richard Northcott, Hyner Farm, Christow. On the 9th of July the deceased was sent to fetch some horses n an orchard, but finding he did not return Mr Northcott went to seek him. He found the poor man on the ground where he had fallen from a horse. He said the horse had kicked him and broken his leg. He was immediately sent to the Devon and Exeter Hospital. He went on very well for two or three weeks, but abscesses having set in amputation was deemed necessary. Mr James, surgeon, said the deceased died from exhaustion, consequent upon the injury to the leg. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
An Inquest was held at the Blue Boar Inn on Monday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., on the body of JOHN LAKE, mason, aged sixty-four, who met with his death through the folly, much too prevalent, of attempting to get out of the train whilst in motion. It appears that LAKE had been to Totnes races, accompanied by his daughter, and returned by the train which is due at Exeter at 7.50. Arriving at St. Thomas he stepped from the carriage before the train had been brought to a standstill, his foot slipped and he instantly fell between the train and the platform, and sustained a compound fracture of the right leg. He was conveyed with every possible speed to the hospital, when it was found necessary to amputate the limb. This was very successfully accomplished, but the poor fellow never recovered from the shock and died on Sunday afternoon. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 21 September 1864, Issue 5128 – Gale Document No. Y3200706283
INQUEST – VERDICT OF MANSLAUGHTER AGAINST LIEUTENANT ARSCOTT On Friday week an Inquest was commenced before H. W. Hooper, Esq., on view of the body of JOHN SUTTON, who died the previous day. The jurymen were – Messrs. Wm. Langworth Halls (foreman, Samuel Gifford, Henry Hall, Henry Fouracres, Joseph Leat, Wm. Connett, Wm. Flooks, John Knowsley, Charles Manley, Vincent Strawson, Henry Manley, John Roberts, Thomas Scott, George Linton, John Thomas Taylor, and John Croot.
JOHN SUTTON, a carpenter, living at 22, East John-street, Newtown, said the deceased was his father, and resided at No. 2, Poltimore-terrace, St. Sidwell's. He was sixty-eight years of age, and by trade a waiter. Witness saw him last alive on the night of Wednesday, the 7th September, about ten o'clock; he was then in bed; he was sick and ill, and under the care of Mr John Lempriere De la Garde, but he was not confined to his bed. The deceased had been ailing for about five weeks. He was at Starcross on Tuesday, the 2nd of August, waiting at the Book Club dinner at the Courtenay Arms Inn. He returned home on the night of that day by the 9.45 train. Witness saw him on his return in the New London Inn Square. He was alone. Witness spoke to him, and he appeared as if drunk. He was stupid. Witness said, "Good God, father, what is the matter with you?" and he replied, "I have been beaten." Witness observed deceased's left eye was very much swollen, and his face and shirt covered with blood. Witness then said, "Who did it?" upon which he said, "Young Arscott did it." Witness asked where he lived, and he replied, "His father lives on Southernhay." Witness then helped his father home; he was perfectly sober, but stunned from the blows. Witness saw him again on the following morning, and finding him low and depressed sent Mr De la Garde to him. Witness questioned him further as to the injury he had received, and asked him how it occurred. He answered that he was coming up from Starcross in a second-class railway carriage with three or four other men, who were drunk and kicking up a disturbance amongst themselves. Arscott first knocked off his hat. He civilly asked him to be quiet, and then he (Arscott) struck him a blow on his face with his fist, which stupefied him. On getting out of the train at St. Thomas's station Arscott again struck him a blow with his fist on the back, and said, "There, old governor, take that." Mr De la Garde and his father, Mr P. De la Garde, continued to attend him until his death, which took place on the morning of Thursday, the 8th inst. The deceased had been disabled from the date of the injury.
John Lempriere De la Garde, surgeon, said he knew the deceased, and for many years had attended him professionally. He did so in November last. The deceased then had pneumonia, a congested state of his left lung. He got the better of it, and witness did not attend him again until he was sent for on the 3ed of August. Witness found him in the parlour looking very distressed and ill, and shaken. He complained of difficulty of breathing, which he had laboured under for some time. Witness observed over the left eye and cheek a tremendous bruise, and the parts blackened to an unusual extent. He examined the bruise; there did not appear to be a fracture, but it appeared to have been caused by a crushing blow, as if repeated in three or four places. There was a slight abrasion of the skin. He was very depressed. Witness gave him medicine to warm and compose him, and ordered him a lotion for the bruise on his eye. He asked him how he came by the bruise, and he said, "The blows you see on my face were struck at me in a railway carriage by young Arscott. I feel very giddy and shaken in consequence." Witness considered the blows rendered him less capable of bearing up against the difficulty of breathing. Witness considered he laboured under disease of the heart; he had been a failing man for some time. He could not speak positively of the precise cause of death without a post mortem examination, but he was inclined to the opinion that the immediate cause of death was effusion of fluid in the pericardium, and he considered his death was accelerated by the blows, received, which shook his feeble frame.
The Jury thought it necessary that a post mortem examination should be made, and the Inquest was adjourned to Thursday, when it was resumed.
Mr Daw attended to watch the case on the part of Mr Arscott.
John Parr and Thomas Easterling (occasional waiters), and Henry Cross (servant to R. S. Gard, Esq.), who waited at the dinner on the 2nd of August in company with SUTTON, deposed that he was sober when he left the Courtenay Arms. Richard Bury Russell, Major in the Devon Artillery Militia, and a magistrate of the county of Devon, residing at Southmolton, was at Starcross on the 2nd of August with Captain Devon and Lieutenant Arscott of the same regiment; they got into the train and were followed by SUTTON, who stumbled over witness's legs; they sat opposite each other, Arscott sitting by SUTTON'S side. There were three other men in the carriage whom he did not know. When SUTTON stumbled on entering witness said, "Hold up, old fellow." SUTTON and Arscott then began talking together in a chaffing manner, of which witness did not take much notice, his attention being directed to two of the strangers who were quarrelling about the window – one wishing it to be up, the other down. On nearing St. Thomas witness saw deceased hold his fist in Arscott's face, evidently in a threatening manner; but no blow was struck at that time. Mr Arscott tapped SUTTON on the shoulder, and said, "All right, old man, don't be in a rage – keep your temper." Deceased then struck Mr Arscott a violent blow in the face. The blow was returned by Mr Arscott instantly. On this I caught hold of Mr Arscott, and called Mr Devon, who was at the other end of the carriage, to come over to help me separate them. He came over and sat between them. The blood came from SUTTON'S face, either his nose or his mouth. I should say from the nose.
By JURORS. – I did not see any mark in Arscott's face, and I did not see him for some time afterwards. I saw Arscott attempt to strike SUTTON a second time, but did not see a second blow. I did not hear anything about wine having been stolen. I did not see a blow on the back as SUTTON got out. I heard Arscott say, "You got too much wine, old fellow." I heard nothing about voting or about politics. The chaffing was not at all of an angry tone.
By the CORONER. – When Arscott raised his hand the second time they both appeared to be trying to strike one another. There would have been a regular scrimmage.
By the Jury. – I should say Arscott got out first; he walked away with me. I never saw SUTTON on the platform. I don't know whether he got out at all. He certainly did not get out before Arscott. I was the first man to get out of the carriage. Mr Devon followed close on my heels and joined me instantly. Mr Arscott almost at the same time.
By the CORONER. – I did not hear the other passengers say a word about the blows. They were servants or mechanics; young men.
By Mr DAW. – I should say SUTTON was certainly not sober. I should certainly say he was not fit to do his duty. He was throwing his arms about and wanted to argue with me.
By the Jury – He appeared not to be sober. I had not been drinking. We had one bottle of sherry between three. MR SUTTON had to pass two men before he came to me. I repeat I should say SUTTON was not sober; he appeared excited. I don't wish to say a word against the poor man.
Henry Charles Devon, captain in the Devon Artillery Militia, residing at Rackenford, was at Starcross on the 2nd, saw deceased get into the carriage. He was not dead drunk, but lively, certainly intoxicated. He began to converse with Mr Arscott almost immediately, but witness did not take much notice as he was in the corner of the carriage at the other end. Heard some chaffing remarks to SUTTON by Arscott about his being drunk and drinking the champagne or sherry behind the door. Inferred that he meant that he had been drinking the wine belonging to the club. This occurred before any blow was struck. His attention was first drawn to the waiter holding his fist in Arscott's face, telling him he would do something – did not hear what. Mr Arscott patted him, saying, "Don't be angry old fellow, its only chaff," and smoothed him down. SUTTON gave him a slap in the face on which Arscott turned halfway round on his seat and hit SUTTON in the face. Major Russell called to witness, who immediately rose and got between SUTTON and Arscott. Saw blood from the waiter's nose – not much. Should not call the blow Arscott gave him a very heavy one. Should think there was hardly room to strike a heavy blow, but there was not much time to judge. Did not see SUTTON get out. Major Russell got out first, then witness, and Arscott followed. Saw SUTTON on the 17th at Starcross, he had got a black eye, the bruise extending a long way over his face.
By the JURY. – Only saw one blow each side. Saw Mr Arscott every day after the 2nd. Did not see any marks about him, nor did he complain of being beaten. SUTTON was sitting when he struck Arscott. Believe Arscott was sober; all he had taken was a portion of a bottle of sherry at the dinner. Mrs Elizabeth Beazley, landlady of the Courtenay Arms, said, - On the evening of the 2nd of August JOHN SUTTON waited at the club dinner, which was at six o'clock. She saw him frequently during the afternoon and evening. That day he was very poorly and drank a little brandy. He generally drank beer. He had about threepenny-worth of brandy and water two or three times, and when he left he had a glass of gin, neat. I cannot say he was quite drunk, but he had had quite enough. He could walk straight and knew what he was about. He could not eat anything the whole day. He said he should not come on the next occasion till the four o'clock train; and he did not. He said there was so much hard work he should send one of the others; he was not strong enough.
MR DAW: That is important, because it is put as though his black eye kept him away.
By MR DAW. – When he came on the 17th he appeared a little better.
By a JURYMAN. – I don't think that he drank would have hurt him another time.
THE CORONER – Mrs Beazley explains it by saying he had not eaten anything all day.
Mr John Lempreire De la Garde stated: At the request of yourself and the Jury I made a post mortem examination of the deceased on the morning of the 10th, the day after the Inquest. I called in Dr Shapter, senior physician of the hospital, Mr De la Garde, my father, senior surgeon of the hospital; and Mr Huxley also came as a friend to assist me. The body was beginning to decompose rapidly. We first examined the head. I have some notes which Dr Shapter was kind enough to put down for me. We opened the head, but found no fracture of the skull; no effusion of blood or lymph on the surface of the brain or its membranes. The brain itself proved healthy, and in its normal state. Next attention was directed to the organs of the chest. There was a large quantity of fluid, about two pints, in each of the pleurae – the serous bag in which the lungs were wrapped. The lungs themselves appeared congested; were crepitant under the finger, showing the passage of air through them. The pericardium (or bag surrounding the heart) was studded to a very remarkable extent with masses of fat. The heart was large and flabby in appearance. On its being opened the left ventricle was found dilated and hypertrophied. The mitral valves (the important valves guarding the opening between the auricle and ventricle of the heart on the left side) were ossified to a great extent, and one of the aortic semi-lunar valves was also ossified, but not quite to such an extent. The aortic itself at its commencement from the heart was found dilated and showing marks of degeneration. The septum of the heart (the portion between the cavities perpendicularly), was found much thickened and fatty. The liver and kidneys, bowels and bladder, presented a healthy appearance. I could not detect any fracture of a rib (having reference to the blow on the back spoken of at the Inquest). The whole hart presented appearances of degeneration. I should say that SUTTON died from disease of the heart.
THE CORONER. – Looking at the weak and feeble state in which the deceased was, do you consider that the blows contributed to his death? It is impossible for me to swear to it; it is my belief that the blows did shake that man in his feeble health. – Do you consider, as a consequence, that his death was accelerated thereby? I say I cannot swear; but it is my belief it was.
MR DAW: How long have you attended him? They sent for me on the morning of the 3rd August. - Did you attend him before? In November last. - What was the matter with him then? He then had an attack of congestion of the lungs, on the left side. - What was it brought about by? I think by his working with his coat off. - Did you detect any disease of the heart then? No, I did not observe it. - Now, judging from the post mortem examination, have you any doubt he had disease of the heart last November. I should say he might have had. - Have you any doubt there was? - I should say there was disease f the heart last November. Does not that class of disease take a very long time to arrive at the state you saw it? It is impossible to say, it is a slow disease. - Do you know what his habits were; did he get intoxicated? I have known him all my life, seeing him out at parties, and I never saw him the least intoxicated. - Will you venture to give a positive opinion that his death was accelerated by the blow, after the disease you saw in the heart? I can only go from the circumstances altogether, and I saw that I firmly believe it might have been. - Do you give a positive opinion? A man's life must not be taken away by a might-be. Do you give a positive opinion that his death was accelerated by the blow? Yes, I do. - By what blow? The blow that he received upon the eye. In fact by the shock of the blow on the eye and that part.
THE CORONER: In fact, by the shock to his whole system? Yes.
MR DAW: Was there not sufficient disease of the hart to have caused death without reference to the blow on the eye? I think there was. - Did you hear the evidence now as to the illness on the 2nd August? Have you any doubt that was illness of the heart? I have very little doubt it was so., proceeding from effusion into the side of the chest. - Did you object to his going down to Starcross on the 17th August? I did, strongly; but he said he felt he must go, there were certain things he alone understood.
MR SHAPTER, who was present when the post mortem examination was made, said: I have known the deceased for thirty years. I confirm Mr De la Garde's evidence as regards the examination.
THE CORONER: From what you have seen of that examination, and from what you have heard of the evidence, what is your opinion as to the cause of death? My inference is that the immediate cause of death was the effusion into the cavities of the pleurae (commonly known as water upon the chest). That the effusion was due to the diseased condition of the heart. I also consider that the effusion was not of an inflammatory origin, but was a passive effusion. I consider that the disease of the heart was of long standing. - Do you believe, looking at the feeble state of the man and the disease of the heart under which he suffered, that the blows and the excitement occasioned thereby would probably accelerate his death? I cannot say I come to that conclusion entirely. If you put the case hypothetically – whether if a man with such a diseased heart were to be submitted to any excitement or blows it might be injurious, I should say yes. But from the examination I have seen, there is enough to account for death without reference to the blows. - Do you believe, looking at his state, that the deceased's death was accelerated? I cannot say I come to that conclusion. I think his death is entirely due to disease, and was not accelerated. I have attended to the evidence as to the nature of the blows given. I have also heard Mrs Beazley state that in her opinion the deceased was rather better on the 17th than on the 2nd, and I come to the conclusion that death was not accelerated. But if you put a case hypothetically – if a man is in such a diseased state, may his death be accelerated by blows, I think it might.
MR DAW: Dr Shapter has stated that in this case death was not accelerated by the blows, and that statement the Coroner should take down.
The Coroner then took down the following opinion, at Dr Shapter's dictation. - I say, considering the evidence I have heard, that the blow struck was upon the face, and that he was apparently better in health on the 17th August than on the 2nd, I do not consider in this case that the deceased's death was accelerated by the blows given.
BY JURORS: I do not believe they did him any substantial harm. I am distinctly of opinion that death was due to disease and not to the blows, even in the absence of Mrs Beazley's evidence. Some of the most fatal diseases of the heart are not detected.
MR DAW: unfortunately the Coroner has on his notes much that is not strictly evidence, conversation and statements on hearsay, which might prejudice some minds.
THE CORONER: if we went on the strictest rules of evidence it would be often difficult to get any evidence. I use my best endeavours to gather what shall throw light upon the cause of death.
MR DAW: You have got statements as to blows on the chest and back unsupported by evidence.
DR SHAPTER: It is right to state that the appearance of the liver and kidneys proves that the deceased was not an habitual drunkard.
MR SUTTON, son of the deceased, proposed that as Mr Arscott was represented by a legal gentleman, the Inquest should be adjourned that he might have an attorney present; but on the advice of Mr Floud's clerk (who had taken notes of the evidence), he did not press the application.
THE CORONER said he should have been very glad to have seen a profession man present on behalf of the representatives of the deceased. He had endeavoured so far as he could to supply the want. According to Mr Daw, he had gone further than he ought. At all events, these representatives could have no ground of complaint against him, for if he had erred at all, it had been on their side. He had always been desirous at such Enquiries to elicit the truth, and possibly much had been received that was not strictly legal. This court differed in its mode of procedure from others, and in sitting to Enquire when, how, and by what means a person had come to his death he, perhaps, took a broader view than he should if a man were placed before him on trial. The case before him was, perhaps, one of the most painful he had ever had to investigate. During the ten or eleven years he had held the office of Coroner he had had many inquiries of considerable anxiety and difficulty, but he must confess he had not had one in which he had more difficulty in coming to a conclusion. They all knew the deceased. He had known him all his life, and believed him to be a steady, respectable man, conducting himself in every way with propriety. He was quite inoffensive, and he could not conceive him the aggressor, as they had heard tonight. No doubt, in his mind, the spirits SUTTON took acted injuriously upon an empty stomach. He might have been excited, as had been stated, but he could not have believed him to have been drunk. The Coroner then epitomised the evidence. On the journey up, the deceased and Mr Arscott "chaffed" one another. SUTTON struck Arscott, who in return struck the deceased so violently that the marks remained upon him at his death – six weeks after. To use Mr De la Garde's words on Friday, it must have been a "crushing" blow. The Jury would have to decide on the evidence – first, was the blow struck; and, secondly, did death result from that blow? They must leave out of consideration the social position of the parties. If they found in those two points in the affirmative they could not make it homicide by misadventure, or in self-defence. It must be either manslaughter or nothing at all. They had heard the evidence of Mr De la Garde, who had been the deceased's medical attendant, and had known him all his life, and must decide whether the "crushing" blow, which caused a swelling as large as an egg, was the cause of death. It did not matter whether SUTTON struck Arscott first or not. If the latter gave a blow which caused the other's death, he was liable to be sent to another tribunal to answer for it. Mr De la Garde said the immediate cause of death was disease of the heart; but that the blow acting on the feeble frame of the deceased was such as to result in his death. Dr Shapter did not know the deceased professionally, and he gave his opinion on the examination and the evidence. He (the Coroner) did not know how to advise, but must leave the matter in their hands. If the blow accelerated death by one moment, he was bound to tell them the person inflicting the blow was liable to answer the indictment of manslaughter. If, on the other hand, they thought that disease of the hart was sufficient of itself to cause death, they would return a different verdict.
The Jury then retired, and were absent for thirty-five minutes. On returning, THE FORMAN said: The Jury have given this case their most careful consideration, and they have decided unanimously, with one exception, to return a verdict of "Manslaughter" against Thomas Reynolds Arscott.
THE CORONER: I think it necessary to state that I have no objection to accept bail under the recent Act, Mr Arscott in £200, and two sureties in £100 each.
The accused subsequently attended, and tendered the necessary bail for his appearance at the next Assizes.
The FOREMAN of the Jury (Mr Halls) expressed the thanks of the Jury to Mr De la Garde for the straightforward manner in which he had given his evidence.
The Inquiry lasted upwards of four hours, and, on account of the position of the accused, excited a great deal of interest.
Wednesday 28 September 1864, Issue 5129 – Gale Document No. Y3200706323
TOTNES - The wife of JOSEPH AUSTIN MORGAN, temporary officer of excise, has committed suicide. On Wednesday night MRS MORGAN retired to bed and left her husband down stairs. He was tipsy, and when his wife went to bed he left the house. She got up and fetched him home, and then left the house – saying to one Elizabeth Heath. "Be a mother to my children" – and drowned herself in the river. The Coroner's Jury returned the annexed verdict – "Deceased committed suicide whilst in a state of Temporary Insanity, and the Jury are of opinion that the temporary insanity of the deceased was caused by the drunkenness of her husband, and that those with whom she lodged did not exercise proper watchfulness over her after she had threatened to destroy herself."
Wednesday 28 September 1864, Issue 5129 – Gale Document No. Y3200706313
EXETER – Sudden Death. – MR GEORGE LAWRENCE, an elderly gentleman, who for many years has represented Messrs. Ellwood, hat manufacturers, of London, was seized with illness at his hotel. Medical assistance was promptly obtained, when it was found that MR LAWRENCE was suffering from disease of the hart. At that time the symptoms were not considered as immediately dangerous. In the evening, however, a sudden change took place, and he expired before the medical gentleman could be summoned. An Inquest will be held on the body at ten o'clock this (Wednesday) morning.
Wednesday 5 October 1864, Issue 5130 – Gale Document No. Y3200706342
EXETER – On Saturday evening as MRS PATES, wife of MR GEORGE PATES, chemist, New Bridge-street, returned from a visit to her mother, she ruptured a blood vessel of the lungs and soon afterwards expired. An Inquest was held yesterday, when the medical testimony being to the effect that death was from natural causes, the Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
An Inquest was held on Tuesday by H. w. Hooper, Esq., at the Valiant Soldier Inn, Magdalen-street, on the body of THOMAS GREENSLADE, three years and a half old, son of THOMAS GREENSLADE, barrack-road, Longbrook-street. The evidence went to show that on the 15th August last the deceased went to bed with his mother, that there was a table near with some Lucifer matches on it, and that during the night the child got up and began to play with them. The mother, hearing a scream, was awoke, and found the boy's bed-gown and the table-cloth on fire. The sufferer was taken to the hospital, but was so severely burned that he died on the 1st of October. The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased died from the effects of the burns and the exhaustion consequent thereupon.
FATAL ACCIDENT AT MOUNT RADFORD SCHOOL. On Friday evening last two young gentlemen, named RATTARY and ROBINSON, determined, as a "lark," to escape from the Mount Radford School (where they were pupils) and to visit the city. Escaping through a window RATTARY fell and received blows on the head which occasioned death. The Inquest was held at Mount Radford House on Monday, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner. Lieut.-Colonel Harding was foreman of the most respectable Jury. The Jury having viewed the body, the following evidence was taken:- The deceased was the son of MAJOR RATTARY, of Tiverton, and was preparing for an appointment in India. His father was telegraphed for and reached the school on Saturday. Beverly John Robinson deposed: I am one of the pupils in this establishment, and was fifteen years of age last birthday. There are twenty-nine pupils. The deceased was also a pupil; he was one year my senior. On Friday night last the boys went to bed at half-past eight o'clock. RATTARY, and I, and two others, Vivian and Cory, slept in the same room. Vivian was fifteen years old and Cory sixteen. The custom was for Mr Francis, the English master, or another, the French master, to come round at a quarter to nine to take away the light. In the evening RATTARY obtained permission of the French master, to go out of the school room, and he then secreted our hats and boots as had been arranged between us. When we were up in our bed rooms we got into bed with some of our clothes on, and waited till Mr Francis had taken away the lights. Then we left our bedroom to get out in the town. We got our boots and caps, and then I opened the window over the verandah. I got out first and RATTARY gave me the boots and caps, and I held the ledge of the window by one hand. In getting out RATTARY made a blunder, and came across my shoulders; I let go my hold, and we both rolled down the verandah and fell to the pavement together. We were stunned for a few minutes. RATTARY said he struck himself on the head by the temple, and he was not able to get up so soon as I was. By the accident we each lost one of our boots. We lay on the grass for a short time. One of the masters came out to go into the town, but we hid ourselves and he did not see us. We stayed about the grounds for five minutes, and as RATTARY said he could not walk, we sat down on the wall by the gate for three minutes. I got on his boots, and we walked on. I met one of the schoolfellows, and we met Vivian who had been allowed to go out to see his parents – and we made him promise not to tell that he had seen us. The other boy, Croy, we left behind in the bed room. Vivian walked a step or two and then said he had better go back. We got as far as Mrs Stocker's and asked her if she could give us a bed for the night. She said she could not as she had six men in the house. RATTARY sat on a chair, and was sick with the fall. We had not drunk anything. I went up to the Valiant Soldier and bought 1s. 10d. worth of brandy, as Mrs Stocker said it was a very good medicine. RATTARY drank about half a tumbler mixed with warm water. I could not drink any of it. I engaged a bed at the Valiant Soldier. RATTARY said I had better go there by myself, but I said I would not leave him. One of the men went with me to help the deceased to the Valiant Soldier. Just before we got there we met Miss Roper. She recognised us, took us into Mr Hatswell's and sent for Mr Kempe, the surgeon. I don't know what he said. Then we went home in a fly about half-past ten. I was sent to bed and never saw the deceased again alive.
Miss Lucy Matilda Roper deposed to meeting the youths and sending for Mr Kempe. vDr Wm. Robert Marchant said: I was called to attend the deceased soon after two o'clock on Saturday morning. I found him in bed, and Mr., Mrs., and Miss Roper, and a female servant were in attendance on him. He was completely insensible and occasionally convulsed. There was a slight unevenness on the right side of the head and a little redness. It required a very careful examination to detect it. From the evidence I have heard there is no doubt there had been concussion, but he was then suffering from compression. I believe that when he fell he fractured the base of the skull, and probably tore across one or more of the blood vessels. Being stunned, and from the shock to the system from the severe fall, these vessels did not bleed at all, or but very little, at the time. When reaction set in bleeding came on, producing compression of the brain, insensibility, and death. I have heard he took brandy, but the cause of death was the fall. The sickness was from the injury to the brain. Brandy might have caused reaction earlier, but it must have come on.
THE CORONER, in summing up, said it seemed to have been a case of accidental death, occurring by the folly of the two young men. No one was to blame but the one who had suffered the penalty of the loss of life and his companion. He supposed Mr Roper had given him a severe reprimand, and better than he could do. It should make a great impression on him – the loss of his brother-pupil's life by folly. As far as the establishment went, it seemed that everything was most prudently, properly, and carefully conducted. He had endeavoured to ascertain that most critically. The master went round, as usual, to see that the lights were out and everything was done that was necessary. After a brief consultation, the Foreman of the Jury said: "We consider that the death was purely accidental, and that no blame attaches to anyone. As far as the establishment is concerned no more attention could have been paid, nor more judicious measures have been taken than there were."
Wednesday 9 November 1864, Issue 5135 – Gale Document No. Y3200706482
EXETER – On Wednesday an Inquest was held at the Blue Boar Inn, Magdalen-street, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of WILLIAM LAVIS, twenty-six years of age, carpenter, in the employ of the London and South-western Railway, who, on Monday, the 26th of September, met with an accident at the Crediton station, and was removed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where he died from a dose of chloroform on Tuesday, the 2nd of November. Some timber fell upon LAVIS, and wounded his foot. An operation to remove a piece of dead bone was agreed upon, and forty minims of chloroform administered. This was less than the usual quantity, but sufficient to cause his death, notwithstanding the prompt remedies which were applied. The Jury returned a verdict of "Homicide by Misadventure."
Wednesday 30 November 1864, Issue 5138 – Gale Document No. Y3200706554
EXETER – Shocking Death. – An Inquest was held at the Rising Sun Inn, Russell-street, yesterday, before Mr H. W. Hooper, Coroner, on the body of JAMES LEE, landlord of that inn. MR LEE appeared in his usual health the previous evening when his wife retired to bed about eleven o'clock, but when she awoke about two finding her husband not there she lighted a candle and went down stairs, and beheld him sitting in a chair dead. Mr Webb, surgeon, had known the deceased some years. About twelve months since he had a fall from a window which severely shook him and he had not been well since. In his opinion the deceased died from spasms of the heart. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Mr H. W. Hooper held an Inquest at the Bishop Blaize Inn on Monday, touching the death of MATTHEW RADFORD, aged thirty-five, a packer on the Bristol and Exeter Railway. On Saturday evening he complained of pain in the chest. During the night he got out of bed and vomited. His wife immediately sent for a doctor but before his arrival the man had ceased to breathe. Disease of the heart was supposed to be the cause of death.
Wednesday 7 December 1864, Issue 5139 – Gale Document No. Y3200706591
EXETER – An Inquest was held by H. W. Hooper, Esq., on Saturday, at the London Ale House, Mary Arches-street, on the body of HENRY BURGESS, aged two months. The child had been weakly since its birth, and died on Saturday morning. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died from Natural Causes."
An Inquest was held by H. W. Hooper, Esq., on Monday, at the Fountain Inn, on the Quay, on the body of WILLIAM LOOKIS, aged thirty-two, a gunner in the Royal Artillery, stationed at Devonport, who was accidentally drowned, whilst in a state of intoxication, on Saturday night. The Jury returned a verdict of Accidental Death, and desired the Coroner to make a representation to the Town Council on the subject of fencing the coal quay as far as the wharf, as it was now very dangerous.
Wednesday 28 December 1864, Issue 5142 – Gale Document No. Y3200706663
EXETER – Yesterday an Inquest was held before H. W. Hooper, Esq., at the Valiant Soldier inn, Magdalen-street, on the body of JOHN ESWORTHY, aged seventy-six, a retired farmer. The deceased and a man named Atkins were erecting a shute on a house in Blackboy-road on Friday last when they both had occasion to ascend the ladder at once causing it to break in two parts about five feet from the top. ESWORTHY was taken to the Hospital and expired. The house surgeon gave it as his opinion that the deceased died from probably fracture of the skull. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death." Atkins being on the lower part of the ladder was severely bruised.
Wednesday 28 December 1864, Issue 5142 – Gale Document No. Y3200706670
TIVERTON – Suicide of a Farmer. – MR RICHARD SELMAN, of Dipford Farm, Bampton, has followed up his extremely eccentric habits by committing suicide. The deceased left his home on Wednesday night – evidently with the intention of drowning himself; but instead of availing himself of a deep river that runs near his house he choose to walk to Bampton town and there drowned himself in a mere stream. He lifted a small grating, descended the hole, filled his pockets with stones, placed his hat in his pocket, and deliberately lay down in the water, which was not more than a foot deep. The next morning a woman was passing the grating and observed the body of a man beneath, which was that of the deceased. In April last MR SELMAN and Mr Bowden, a neighbouring farmer, had a severe squabble, and Mr Bowden struck the deceased on the head. This has led to legal proceedings, which have not yet been completed; and the immediate relatives sought at the Inquest to case the blame of MR SELMAN'S luckless death upon Mr Bowden for inflicting the blows in April. The evidence, however, was clear that the deceased was in his usual state of health and mind up to June, and the Jury returned a verdict that the deceased drowned himself whilst in an Unsound State of Mind.
Wednesday 28 December 1864, Issue 5142 – Gale Document No. Y3200706658
EXETER – Sudden Death. – An Inquest was held on Thursday at the New Market Inn, Goldsmith-street, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, relative to the death of ROBERT C. BRAGG, twenty-nine years of age, smith, in the employ of Mr Godbeer. On Wednesday he complained of a pain in his shoulder, and the part affected was rubbed with turpentine. He then went to bed. At six o'clock the same evening he said that the pain had shifted, and next morning at five o'clock was discovered by his mother dead. Mr Perkins, surgeon, was of opinion that death resulted from spasms of the heart. A verdict to that effect was returned.
Wednesday 11 January 1865, Issue 5144 – Gale Document No. Y3200706721
TIVERTON – The other day a child under two years of age – named HARRY NORTH – took a bottle of liniment from a shelf and drank some of the liquid. The child died two days afterwards from inflammation of the windpipe, caused by inhaling the liniment. The Coroner's Jury exonerated the aunt, with whom the child lived.
Wednesday 18 January 1865, Issue 5148 – Gale Document No. Y3200706737
On Monday an Inquest was held on the body of GEORGE BEER, formerly attorney's clerk at Crediton. The deceased had associated himself with a woman of disreputable character in Lower-North-street, and a dispute ended in a scuffle. On Saturday night BEER was drunk and fell down stairs. He complained of pains in the head and died early on Monday morning. The evidence being conflicting the further hearing was adjourned until Thursday to give time for a post mortem examination.
Wednesday 18 January 1865, Issue 5148 – Gale Document No. Y3200706743
DAWLISH – Infanticide. – HARRIET VOTE lived in the service of Mr M. Strickland, at the Warren. She was taken ill, and the doctor discovered that she had been confined. In her box was found the body of a child, and a piece of tape was tied tightly round the neck. Medical evidence affirmed that the child was born alive, and at the Inquest at the Mount Pleasant Inn the Jury returned a verdict of Wilful Murder against the young woman. The girl was not suspected, and her master gave her an excellent character.
Wednesday 25 January 1865, Issue 5149 – Gale Document No. Y3200706766
EXETER – Sudden Death. – On Wednesday afternoon an Inquest was held before H. W. Hooper, Esq., City Coroner, and a Jury, at the sawyers Arms, on the body of JAMES RENDLES, about sixty years of age, who died the previous morning about eleven o'clock, in a house in Preston-street. RENDLES used to parade the High-street with a tray of sweets. About three weeks ago he complained of a pain in the chest, Mr Roper, the medical officer for the Western district, was sent for, and the man recovered and resumed his employment. On Tuesday morning however he complained of being worse – took some pills – and sent again for Mr Roper. Before that gentleman arrived RENDLES was dead. Disease of the heart was said to be the cause of death, and a verdict to that effect was returned.
SAD OCCURRENCE. – On Thursday an Inquest was held before H. W. Hooper, Esq., and a Jury, at the Turk's Head Inn, relative to the circumstances connected with the death of ELLEN LINTERN, thirty-seven years of age, wife of a mason living in Pancras-place. MRS LINTERN, on Tuesday evening about half-past five o'clock, went up stairs to induce a child belonging to one of the neighbours to go to her room. She on returning fell over the stairs and it appeared fractured her skull. Instead of at once sending for medical assistance the neighbours raised the poor woman, and when she was insensible and in a dying state left her on the stairs for about two hours and a-half. On being removed to a room she expired. Her husband, who had been at work at the Pocumb Quarry, returned soon after. Mr Delagarde was sent for when it was too late. The Coroner and the Jury censured the neighbours for their inhuman conduct, and returned a verdict of "Accidental Death." The deceased it should be observed had been drinking and was enceinte.
Wednesday 25 January 1865, Issue 5149 – Gale Document No. Y3200706780
EXETER – Inquest. – On Thursday an adjourned Inquest on the body of GEORGE BEER, thirty-four years of age, single man, was held at the Black Dog Inn, North-street, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner. The deceased had been found dead in bed, and the evidence being conflicting a post mortem examination was ordered to be made. The following additional evidence was given: - Owen Williams, a cork cutter, living in North Bridge-terrace, stated that he saw a man drag the deceased out of Mr Strong's house, in Lower North-street, and threw him on the pavement. George Gray, a shoemaker, of Lower North-street, said that on Saturday night, just after twelve o'clock, he saw Henry Sellick, whom he knew well, drag the deceased out of Strong's house and throw him on the footpath. BEER, who appeared to be drunk, was taken away in an insensible state. Henry Sellick, a shoemaker, living in Strong's house, said he met the deceased at the Britannia Inn on Saturday night, but did not see him afterwards. He heard a disturbance in the house between twelve and one, but did not interfere. Mr Webb, surgeon, said that he, in conjunction with Mr Warren, had made a post mortem examination, and he considered that the cause of death was apoplexy, produced by a general congestion of the head, and followed by the rupture of a blood-vessel on the brain. This was caused by excessive drinking; the fall, in his opinion, having nothing to do with it. Mr Hooper said that in the whole course of his experience he had not known a case in which there was such contradictory evidence. Mrs Mackintosh had sworn that the deceased was quarrelling with her and fell down the steps, George Gray that Henry Sellick dragged him out of the house and Sellick that he did not see the deceased on the evening in question after he left him at the public-house. There appeared to have been a general row in the house, the conduct of some of the parties having been very bad – the deceased fell or was thrown on the pavement and injured himself, and it was a matter for the investigation whether death was accelerated by that injury; but Mr Webb had stated that there was sufficient beyond the fall to have caused death, and this relieved them of a painful duty. The deceased belonged to a respectable family, and was possessed of the means of making himself comfortable, but he had led a very dissolute life. The Jury returned a verdict in accordance with the medical testimony.
Wednesday 1 February 1865, Issue 5150 – Gale Document No. Y3200706796
EXETER – Sudden Death. – On Monday last an Inquest was held at the Topsham Inn, in this city, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, and a Jury, regarding the death of JOHN SOUTHCOTT, aged seventy-one, of No. 1, Lower Southernhay. the deceased went to bed on Saturday night about ten o'clock, and was soon afterwards heard by a Mrs Graham, who lived in the house to be groaning. She went to his assistance, and he died almost immediately. Mr Woodman, jun., surgeon, was of opinion that death resulted from spasms of the heart. A verdict accordingly was returned.
SCALDED TO DEATH. – On Wednesday afternoon an Inquest was held before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, and a Jury, at the Valiant Soldier Inn, relative to the death of HENRY CHASE, twenty years of age, who lodged at the Three Crowns, in King-street. CHASE assisted the brewer at the Bull Inn on Monday night, and fell into the mash tub: it being full of hot water and malt he was scalded. He was promptly rescued, his clothes were taken off, and he was conveyed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital. there he received the attention of Mr Huxley, the house surgeon. The injuries which CHASE had received terminated fatally on Wednesday morning. Verdict – "Accidental Death. "
Wednesday 8 February 1865, Issue 5151 – Gale Document No. Y3200706827
EXETER – An Inquest was held on Monday t the Globe Inn, Newtown, before Mr H. W. Hooper, Coroner, touching the death of the infant son of JAMES ROBERTS, boot and shoe maker. It appeared that the deceased was teething and on Saturday last whilst in the arms of its nurse it gave a violent plunge and immediately expired, becoming black in the face. Mr Perkins, surgeon, stated that children whilst teething are subject to spasms of the glottis which cause instantaneous death, and that the deceased died from that cause. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 15 February 1865, Issue 5152 – Gale Document No. Y3200706855
EXETER – On Thursday an Inquest was held at the Anchor Inn, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, and a Jury, on view of the body of WILLIAM HENRY TURNER, infant son of MR PHILIP TURNER, shoemaker of Prince's-road. On Wednesday morning the father gave the boy a piece of bacon whilst at breakfast, and the mother, when in the act of handing him something to drink, perceived that his face was turning black. A neighbour was called in and Mr Farrant, surgeon, was sent for; before that gentleman arrived the child had expired. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 22 February 1865, Issue 5153 – Gale Document No. Y3200706883
WILLIAM WICKERS and Richard Bennett, in the employ of Mr Wolland, timber merchant of St. Thomas, were engaged on Saturday in conveying timer on the Tiverton Road. Each man had charge of a team of horses and a waggon. They fed their horses at the Ruffwell Inn, and soon afterwards on descending a hill WICKERS was someway knocked down, and the wheels of his waggon passed over his body. He was conveyed to the Devon and Exeter Hospital, where he died early the next morning. An Inquest was held on the body yesterday afternoon when the Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 1 March 1865, Issue 5154 – Gale Document No. Y3200706920
CHUDLEIGH KNIGHTON – WM. HEATH, labourer, attended the recent sale at Ballamarsh Mills, and on returning to his home he fell over a bridge that spans the river Teign. He was soon got out and conveyed to his house at Bradley Ford, but he died not long afterwards. He was forty years old, and has left a widow and seven children. "Accidental Death" was recorded by the Coroner's Jury.
Wednesday 15 March 1865, Issue 5156 – Gale Document No. Y3200706965
BISHOPSTAWTON – MR JOHN JONES, farmer, of Newbridge, went to his stable on Friday morning to feed the horses. In descending from the hay loft he is supposed to have slipped his foot and to have broken his neck by the fall. His daughter soon afterwards found her father dead in the stable. He was seventy-three years of age. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
COOMBEINTEIGNHEAD – MRS SEELEY BROWN, of Middle Rocombe, a few days since made a terrible allegation against her husband. They quarrelled, MR BROWN went for the police, and when one of the constabulary came to the house MRS BROWN told the policeman that her husband had shot her father – MR LAVIS; and in that statement she persisted. MR LAVIS died two days previously, and as the corpse was not interred the policeman duly informed the Coroner of what MRS BROWN had said. This led to an Inquest, and the medical evidence proved beyond doubt that MR LAVIS died from natural causes. It transpired however, that MR SEELEY BROWNE had fired at some small birds and some of the shots might have struck MR LAVIS, whose coat was marked with shot or moth holes; but Dr Colt, who attended the deceased, affirmed that no shot had entered MR LAVIS'S body. The Jury returned a verdict of "Death from Natural Causes." No one need envy MRS BROWN'S position.
Wednesday 22 March 1865, Issue 5157 – Gale Document No. Y3200706975
ILSINGTON – Mystery shrouds the death of MR JOHN WILLS, aged sixty-seven. He resided with his daughter, Mrs Bearne, of the New Inn, Ilsington, near Bovey Tracey, and one morning he was found dead in his bed. There were several bruises and wounds on his body, which presented a shocking sight; but Mr Haydon, surgeon, could not discover the cause of death, and the Coroner has directed that the contents of the deceased's stomach be sent to Mr Herapath to be analysed. The Inquest stands adjourned to the 6th April.
Wednesday 29 March 1865, Issue 5158 – Gale Document No. Y3200706998
INQUEST – On Saturday afternoon an Enquiry took place at the City Workhouse before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, and a Jury, relative to the death of ANN TURNER, widow, aged seventy-one, who had been twelve years an inmate. She had been ill about a fortnight, and on the morning of the day above-named, was discovered lying dead in No. 6 Ward in the house. Mr Warren, surgeon, considered that apoplexy was the cause, and the Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 12 April 1865, Issue 5160 – Gale Document No. Y3200707041
EXETER – On Wednesday an Inquest was held at the Sawyer's Arms Inn before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, and Jury as to the sudden death of MARY TAPLEY, widow, eighty-eight years of age, at a lodging house in Preston-street on Sunday. Natural Causes had terminated life, and a verdict accordingly was recorded.
THE FATAL ACCIDENT AT THE EXWICK LEVEL CROSSING. - On Wednesday last an Inquest was held at the Valiant Soldier Inn before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner and a Jury, as to the death of JOHN ROBERTS, a gardener, of Exwick, an elderly and infirm man, who was knocked down by a train as he was passing the level crossing near St. David's station and received injuries which caused his death at the Hospital the same evening, as stated in the Flying Post last week. ROBERTS was trying to pass unperceived under a truck and was caught by the wheels and run over. Mr Mears, traffic superintendent, attended on behalf of the Bristol and Exeter Railway Company. The Jury whilst returning a verdict of "Accidental Death" recommended that the crossing should be "closed up" or that a footbridge should be erected by the company, or by the lord of the manor, or by the parties jointly. A bridge it was believed would cost £600. Mr Mears promised to forward the recommendation to the directors. It was agreed that there was not the slightest neglect on the part of the company's servants in the matter.
Wednesday 12 April 1865, Issue 5160 – Gale Document No. Y3200707052
EXETER – Sudden Death. – On Saturday an Inquest was held at the City Workhouse before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, regarding the death of MARY PAYNE, seventy-one years of age, deaf and a cripple, who retired to rest on Friday evening in her usual state of health, and was found dead by the nurse who took her breakfast about half-past seven on Saturday morning. In the opinion of Mr Warren apoplexy was the cause of death, and the Jury returned a verdict to that effect.
HARBERTON – EDWARD PARNELL, labourer, has died from poison. His daughter went to his bedroom one morning, and fruitlessly endeavoured to wake him. She then sent for the doctor, who directed the application of poultices, believing that PARNELL was in a fit. On turning down the bedclothes an empty bottle was discovered, and it then became apparent that the old man had taken laudanum. He died soon afterwards. Verdict – "Suicide while in a state of Temporary Insanity."
Wednesday 19 April 1865, Issue 5161 – Gale Document No. Y3200707076
TORQUAY – MR RICHARD WILLIAMS, builder, the other day fell from a scaffold, forty feet high, and was injured to such an extent that he died a few hours afterwards. The Coroner's Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 26 April 1865, Issue 5162 – Gale Document No. Y3200707098
DAWLISH - This town has experienced an unpleasant sensation. The York Hotel was visited one evening last week by a person whose appearance indicated respectability. She pretended to be an American, said she had just come from Paddington; that her luggage was at the station; she came to Dawlish for sea-bathing; intended taking lodgings the next day; and being exceedingly tired requested a bed to be got ready at once. Soon afterwards she retired, directing a glass of brandy and water and a biscuit to be brought to her room. Between the hours of two and three in the morning she rang the bell three times, and on Mrs Stocks, wife of the landlord, entering the room she said she could not sleep and requested another glass of brandy and water. This was supplied and nothing further was heard of her up to eleven o'clock, when Mrs Stocks knocked at the bedroom door but could get no answer. The landlady then directed a mason to procure a ladder and get into the room by the window, and his doing so led to the discovery that the lodger had committed suicide. She was dead in bed. There were in the room several empty envelopes, labelled "Simpson's Rat Powder," "Battle's Vermin Powder," and "Barber's Vermin Killer," and there is no doubt that the taking of these powders deprived her of life. the deceased had cut out her name from her handkerchief and her clothes; and there were no traces to lead to her discovery. The incidents of the suicide were published by one of the Plymouth newspapers, and the account was read by the poor woman's husband, who turns out to be MR MARTIN WILLIAMS, an engineer, of Devonport, who keeps a stationer's shop. She left her home on the forenoon of the day she reached Dawlish without her husband's knowledge. It is said that four years since she attempted to drown herself in a tank. She had a spinal complaint, and suffered severely at times from pains in the head. She had five children, whose ages ranged from three to twelve. The Coroner's Jury returned a verdict that the poor woman had died from arsenic, a quantity of which had been found in her stomach by Dr Herepath. The evidence showed that the deceased and her husband lived on good terms: she was subject to depression of spirits. On Sunday one of MR WILLIAMS'S children was burnt to death and his own hand was severely burnt.
Wednesday 17 May 1865, Issue 5165 – Gale Document No. Y3200707162
Mr Crosse held an Inquest at the Port Royal Inn on Saturday upon the body of RICHARD EDWARDS, shoemaker of Westgate. Deceased visited Edwards's Port Royal Inn on Thursday night, leaving there at ten. The next morning his hat was found and in it a scrap of paper, whereon was written: - "Edwards; Dick Edwards is in the water." The river was searched and his body was soon discovered. He has been in a desponding state of mind for some time. Verdict – "Drowned himself whilst in an unsound state of mind."
Wednesday 21 June 1865, Issue 5169 – Gale Document No. Y3200707273
EXETER – Fatal Accident. – An Inquest was held at the Valiant Soldier on Wednesday evening, before Mr H. W. Hooper, city Coroner, on the body of FREDERICK CHANNING, a labourer, who died that morning at the Devon and Exeter Hospital. The deceased was a young man about twenty-three years of age, and belonged to the parish of Rockbeare. On the 24th ult. he was driving an empty waggon between that parish and Traiesbeare when one of the wheels came off. This caused the frightened horses to start off, and the deceased in getting off the waggon to stop them fell, and the wheels passed over him. Mr Melhuish, a butcher, stopped the horses, and attended to the deceased who was conveyed to his master's house. A surgeon was sent for and by his advice the deceased was next day removed to the Hospital. The deceased remained there till Wednesday morning when he died. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 28 June 1865, Issue 5170 – Gale Document No. Y3200707292
MANSLAUGHTER – An Inquest was held on Monday evening at the Topsham Inn, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner for the city, on the body of MARY TAYLOR, wife of THOMAS TAYLOR, of St. Thomas. The injuries from which the deceased died were alleged to have been inflicted by her husband on the 5th of November last. On that day they had both been drinking, and about nine at night they quarrelled, the husband kicking his wife in the most frightful manner. Mr Samuel Smith, of the Prince Albert Inn, St. Thomas, and a man named Burnet, hearing that TAYLOR was killing his wife went to the house. When they got to the foot of the stairs they heard the sound of blows. Smith went upstairs and found the deceased lying on her face and hands on the floor, with a pool of blood under her face. TAYLOR was standing over her with a large oak stick. On the following day deceased was taken to the Hospital. She was then suffering from a compound fracture of the leg. It was attended to in the usual way, and it went on well for a time, but a union could not be effected, and the leg was amputated on the 27th of April. The stump would not heal, and the deceased lingered till Sunday night when she died, in the opinion of Dr Huxley, from exhaustion consequent on her long illness and confinement to her bed. The body was much wasted through intemperance, and if she had been a healthy person she would probably have recovered. The Jury returned a verdict of "Manslaughter" against THOMAS TAYLOR, who was thereupon committed upon the Coroner's warrant to take his trial at the next city assize.
Wednesday 5 July 1865, Issue 5171 – Gale Document No. Y3200707314
EXETER – Suicide. – An Inquest was held yesterday at the Round Tree Inn before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of JOHN BURT, who died from injuries inflicted by his own hand. The deceased, who was a baker by trade, and about thirty-two years of age, resided with his mother, a widow, in rooms over the shop of Mr Trist, a hairdresser. For years past he had suffered much from asthma, and appeared to be in great pain. On Sunday evening the mother of the deceased went out to church leaving him alone. On her return about eight o'clock she found her son lying upon the floor in a quantity of blood; and believing that he had burst a blood vessel she ran for assistance. A Mr Vicary, who resided in the same house, went into the room and discovered the deceased had cut his throat. Mr Perkins, surgeon, was immediately sent for and upon his arrival sewed up the wound and had deceased put to bed. In answer to Mr Perkins's questions, the deceased said that he had cut his throat himself, and believed that he was not right in his mind. He died on Monday morning at half-past six. The Jury returned a verdict of Suicide while in an Unsound State of Mind.
SINGULAR DEATH. – An Inquest was held on Thursday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., on the body of CHARLES GEORGE THOMAS, aged twelve years, an inmate of the Devon and Exeter Boys' Industrial School. The evidence was to the effect that in March last a small piece of wood by some means got into the ear of the deceased. Another lad, named Knowles, endeavoured to remove the piece of wood with a pointed slate pencil, and in doing so probed the wood further in and also broke off the point of the pencil. The deceased was then sent to the Hospital, and Dr Huxley, the house surgeon, syringed the ear and succeeded in removing the wood, but still some foreign body remained. The lad, however, seemed in a day or two to get better, and was discharged on the 13th. On the 24th severe symptoms set in and the deceased again became a patient at the Hospital; but nothing could be done for him, and he died there on Tuesday. A post mortem examination was made by Dr Huxley, who said he found the base of the brain much inflamed, but there was no foreign body there. Deceased died from inflammation of the membranes of the brain, the result of a foreign body in the ear and the necessary surgical operations for its removal. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 5 July 1865, Issue 5171 – Gale Document No. Y3200707320
TORQUAY – Mr Cuming held an Inquest on Saturday upon the body of WILLIAM SPICER. On the preceding Thursday the deceased jumped off from a goods train whilst it was in motion and received fatal injuries. He had no right whatever on the train, and his death is alone attributable to his own incaution. Verdict – "Accidental Death."
TORRINGTON – Mr Vallack held an Inquest at Beaford on Saturday, upon the body of JOHN HOOPER. Deceased was walking near an old cottage, and whilst so engaged the wall fell upon him and he was killed thereby. The unfortunate circumstance was not discovered till the next morning, when finding he had not been to his home for the night search was made. Verdict – "Accidental Death."
Mr Vallack held another Inquest on Monday at Little Torrington, upon the remains of JAMES SMALL. On the preceding Saturday the deceased was engaged in loading a cart at the bottom of Mill-street, when a vehicle (driven by a female) came down the street at a furious pace and knocked the poor fellow down. The wheel passed over his head and he died soon afterwards. The horse in the vehicle had taken fright. Verdict, "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 12 July 1865, Issue 5172 – Gale Document No. Y3200707331
EXETER – Coroner's Inquest. - On Wednesday an Inquest was held at the King Alfred Inn on the body of AARON MOGRIDGE, of Friernhay-street, a married man, twenty-two years of age, who was in the employ of Mr Trood, of Matford House. On the 24th ult. deceased, while engaged in working a screening machine, had one of his fingers slightly crushed in one of the cog wheels of the machine. The deceased attended at the Hospital and had the wound, which did not appear to be a very serious one, attended to. On Saturday, however, symptoms of tetanus set in, and he died on Monday morning. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 26 July 1865, Issue 5174 – Gale Document No. Y3200707388
CHULMLEIGH – The Inquest upon the body of JOHN PALMER resulted in a verdict to the effect that the deceased died from breaking a blood vessel of the heart.
SOUTHMOLTON – SAMUEL BLACKFORD PAYNE, formerly of Starcross, was on Friday engaged in loading a truck in a cutting on Hacche Moor for the Devon and Somerset Railway, when a large quantity of earth fell upon him. He was quickly extricated, but the poor fellow died within an hour. Verdict – "Accidental Death."
TORQUAY – There were circumstances attending the death of PATRICK JAMES GULLAVEN, four years old, which called for a post mortem examination of his body; but the result has dissipated the belief that the house surgeon of the Torbay Infirmary had made a mistake in the medicine. The Jury returned a verdict that the deceased died from Natural Causes.
Wednesday 16 August 1865, Issue 5177 – Gale Document No. Y3200707451
FATAL ACCIDENT – Yesterday afternoon a man named THOMAS COURTNAY was almost instantaneously killed at the terminus of the London and South-Western Railway. Deceased had been in the employ of the company for some years; some weeks ago he met with an accident which occasioned the loss of two fingers, and became a patient in the Devon and Exeter Hospital. About a fortnight ago he resumed his employment at the station, acting as temporary pointsman. On the arrival of the goods train yesterday from Barnstaple at about 5.30 COURTNAY, who was on the up arrival platform, jumped across the buffers of one of the trucks, not observing a pilot engine that was at the moment traversing the adjoining rails. Instantly he was caught, and almost at the moment was a corpse. From the information we received there is no doubt but that the poor fellow's carelessness is alone chargeable with this sad calamity. An Inquest will be held tomorrow (Thursday).
Wednesday 30 August 1865, Issue 5179 – Gale Document No. Y3200707500
ALLEGED DEATH OF AN INFANT THROUGH NEGLECT. – On Wednesday last an Inquest was held before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, at the Anchor Inn, Exe Island, on the body of an infant, aged ten weeks, daughter of a woman named BRICE. MRS BRICE said she had been living with a Mrs Balsom, in the Exe Island, for a few weeks. On Saturday last she went out into the country at about eleven o'clock, leaving the deceased n the care of Mrs Balsom. She returned at eight in the evening, when the child was quite well. It had been previously ill of diarrhoea, and she had given it a powder which Mr Pycroft had prescribed for it. After she came home at eight she went out again and did not return to her child till twelve o'clock. She went to bed at one o'clock and nursed the child in the middle of the night. At six in the morning she found the child in convulsions, and immediately put it into a warm bath; but it died before Mr Farrant, who had been sent for, arrived. Mrs Westcott said that she heard the child crying very bitterly about eleven o'clock on Saturday, there being no one in the house at the time except a little girl eight years of age. The child was frequently left alone till twelve or one at night. Mr Farrant said death had resulted from exhaustion consequent on diarrhoea. The Jury returned a verdict that the child died from Natural Causes, but that there had been great negligence on the part of the mother in leaving the child as long. The Coroner said he entirely concurred in the verdict.
On Wednesday an Inquest was held before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a boy named LEY. The deceased was riding on the shafts of a cart without reins, when it is supposed he fell off, and the wheels of the cart passed over him. The Jury returned a verdict of Accidental Death, but censured the owner of the cart, Mr Metheringham, for permitting the deceased to ride on the shafts.
Wednesday 30 August 1865, Issue 5179 – Gale Document No. Y3200707510
SOUTHMOLTON – An Inquest was held at the Guildhall on Friday before Mr J. T. Shapland, Deputy Coroner, on the body of JOHN STEVENS, aged fifty-four years, a native of Cornwall, who, whilst at work on the 21st inst., on the North Devon and Somerset Railway, in a cutting in the parish of Filleigh, a quantity of earth accidentally fell upon him, which so severely injured him that he died on the 23rd inst. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly. This is the second death that has taken place from accidents on this line within a few months.
Wednesday 6 September 1865, Issue 5180 – Gale Document No. Y3200707525
EXETER – Sudden Deaths. – Two very remarkable instances of sudden death have occurred in this city during the past few days. On Saturday afternoon, MR COSSINS, builder, of Gandy-street, was walking through Castle-street, having business at the office of the Corporation of the Poor, when he staggered and fell. This was observed by Mr William Legg, messenger at the West of England insurance Office, who had not long previously conversed with MR COSSINS in Martin-street. MR COSSINS was removed to the Castle Inn, where he shortly afterwards expired. An Inquest was held in the evening before H. W. Hooper, Esq., and the Jury returned a verdict to the effect that deceased died of disease of the heart.
Another equally painful case occurred yesterday morning. A MR WILLIAM AVERY, a thatcher, residing in the North of Devon, having suffered from consumption and disease of the heart for some years, had been visiting a brother, MR AVERY, stable-keeper, of Southernhay, for the benefit of his health. He was about to return to his home yesterday morning, and as he was passing through Martin's-lane, on his way to the railway station, he suddenly fell to the ground. He was placed upon a chair by Mr Carlile, of Martin's-lane, and a medical man was sent for but he died within a few minutes. An Inquest was held yesterday afternoon at the Ship Inn, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., when Mr De la Garde, surgeon, who saw deceased, stated that apoplexy was the cause of death, and the Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
DEATH FROM FALLING DOWNSTAIRS. – On Monday evening an Inquest was held at the Anchor Inn, Exe Island, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of an old woman named MARTHA FINNIMORE, seventy-seven years of age, who died from the effects of injuries sustained by falling downstairs. Ann Yendall, a woman living in the same house with the deceased, said she heard her fall over the stairs: on going to her assistance she found deceased at the bottom doubled up. She had not been down stairs for nearly two months, and she could not tell why she wished to come down on that occasion. Mr Roper, surgeon, said that deceased had sustained a fracture of the vertebrae. The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidental Death."
Wednesday 20 September 1865, Issue 582 – Gale Document No. Y3200707585
NEWTON ABBOT - SARAH COPE, who has been for some months in the service of Mr Lawe, manure manufacturer, committed suicide on Thursday morning. She procured some oxalic acid from the shop of Mr Poulton, chemist, for the purpose of cleaning brass, but on her return to the house she seems to have drank a large portion of the poison. On the return of the family to dinner the servant was found dead upon the bed. It was stated that she had been under a marriage engagement, but the young man ran from his word, and since then the unfortunate woman has at times been eccentric, and had once before attempted suicide. she was thirty years of age and a native of Tiverton. "Temporary Insanity" was the verdict at the Inquest.
Wednesday 27 September 1865, Issue 5183 – Gale Document No. Y3200707599
EXETER - FATAL ACCIDENT – On Sunday evening an accident which unhappily proved fatal happened to a young man named HERMAN BOLT, about eighteen or twenty years of age, a native of Budleigh. The deceased, who was a sailor on board the Donegal, was going down the river about eight o'clock that evening in a boat belonging to his ship with some other young men in another boat. The deceased was sculling, when his paddle accidentally slipped, and he was precipitated into the water and drowned. The body lies at the Port Royal Inn awaiting the Coroner's Inquest.
Wednesday 4 October 1865 Issue 5184 – Gale Document No. Y3200707622
EXETER – An Inquest was held on Saturday at the Coach and Horses Inn before H. W. Hooper, Esq., Coroner, on the body of JAMES HOWARD GODSMARK, aged five months. The evidence showed that the infant had been very weak since its birth. The father of the deceased awoke on Saturday morning about half-past two, and found the infant lying dead by its mother's side, though not touching her. The Jury returned a verdict of "Died by the Visitation of God."
DEATH BY DROWNING – An Inquest was held at the Port Royal Inn on Wednesday, before R. R. Crosse, Esq., County Coroner, on the body of HERMAN BOLT, aged nineteen. The deceased, an apprentice to the owners of the ship Donegal, was drowned in the Exe on the previous Sunday evening, under circumstances stated in a paragraph in the Flying Post of last week. The Jury returned a verdict of "Death by Drowning;" and the Coroner drew attention to the improper delay which had taken place in holding the Inquest. In this hot weather the body ought not to have been kept about one hour longer than was necessary.
Wednesday 4 October 1865 Issue 5184 – Gale Document No. Y3200707629
TOTNES - ALEXANDER WATT, who was seriously injured ten days since whilst unloading a coal vessel, died on Monday morning from the injuries. The Inquest upon the body resulted in a verdict of "Accidental Death."
CULLOMPTON - The Police at Cullompton have in their custody a girl, not yet seventeen years old, who will be probably charged with infanticide. She is called SANDERS, and her parents live at Bradninch. The girl was living in the service of Mrs Southey, of Selgara Mills, Halberton, and on Wednesday night she gave birth to a child whilst she was in the courtyard. She states that at the moment she became a mother her mistress called her into the house, and after she had cleaned a knife she returned to the yard and carried the child outside the yard. The next day the girl attended to her work – complained of illness from falling whilst gathering apples on the preceding day: but what had really occurred was suspected by Mrs Southey, who sent for the girl's mother, and then the whole secret was disclosed. There were no marks of violence upon the body of the child, which had come to maturity. Mr Coroner Crosse held an Inquest upon the body on Monday at Willand, when the Jury returned a verdict of "Found Dead." The magistrates have to decide the question whether it is a case of infanticide or simply one of concealment of birth.
Wednesday 11 October 1865, Issue 5185 – Gale Document No. Y3200707642
EXETER – Sudden Death Of An Innkeeper. – An Inquest was held at the Blue Boy Inn, West Quarter, on Thursday, before H. W. Hooper, Esq., City Coroner, on the body of EDWARD DREWE, the landlord. Deceased went to bed on the previous evening about eleven o'clock, his wife retiring to rest an hour later. At about half-past one he groaned, and getting out of bed asked for some water. She immediately gave him some but he could not drink, and said he was dying. He expired shortly afterwards in her arms. Mr Hawkins, surgeon, was sent for, but life was extinct when he arrived. His opinion was that deceased died from disease of the heart. Verdict Accordingly.
Wednesday 8 November 1865, Issue 5189 – Gale Document No. Y3200707739
ALLEGED POISONING OF A HUSBAND AT CLIST HONITON
It remains to be proved whether a murder – the most foul and unnatural – has not been perpetrated in the village of Clist Honiton. Therat lived WILLIAM ASHFORD, a shoemaker, and his wife; he was forty-five years of age – the woman much younger, and their only child died when very young. Fortune had been a little kind to the shoemaker who had accumulated some £300 or £500; and not long since he is stated to have made a will bequeathing the money to his wife. In MR ASHFORD'S employ was a young man, named Pratt, with whom MRS ASHFORD is considered to have been upon more intimate terms than a wife should be with any man other than her husband. But this is rumour; which is, however, materially strengthened by incidents that are very black against the woman. On Sunday morning week the husband was taken ill whilst he was delivering some work; and on his return to his house he went to bed. There he continued till Saturday when he died; but the wife had procured the medical services of Mr Roberts, of Exeter. Policeman Butt and his wife were near neighbours of the ASHFORDS, and the women were upon very friendly terms. Mrs Butt lent her assistance in attending the sick man; but the peculiar expressions of MRS ASHFORD and the finding of a sediment in the glass from which the medicine was given to MR ASHFORD, as well as in a tea cup, Mrs Butt arrived t a conclusion that there was some foul play at work in the sick room. She whispered her suspicions to her husband, and Policeman Butt instructed his wife to keep her eyes open. Mrs Butt afterwards scraped off some of the powder she found at the bottom of the glass and tea cup – the cup in which MRS ASHFORD had poured some tea for her husband; - and this powder she gave to her husband. Policeman Butt is believed to have taken the powder into Exeter, and he there soon learnt it was arsenic. He obtained a warrant on Saturday for the apprehension of MRS ASHFORD on a charge of administering poison to her husband; but when the policemen (Butt and Merrifield) reached Clist Honiton poor ASHFORD was dead. The woman was of course taken into custody and arsenic was found in her possession. On Monday she underwent an examination before the Woodbury magistrates who remanded her for a week. She is now in the County Gaol.
The Inquest upon the body of the deceased was opened at the Exeter Inn, Clist Honiton, on Monday, before Mr Deputy Coroner Brent. The only evidence then taken was that given by Mrs Emily Butt, who said: I am the wife of the police-constable, William Butt, who is stationed at Clist Honiton. I lived next door but one to the deceased. On Friday evening last (November 3rd) I was in deceased's bedroom, about five o'clock. I remained there some time. Mr Chown, deceased's neighbour, was in the room at the time. Deceased asked me for a cup of tea. I went down stairs and told MRS ASHFORD. She brought a teapot upstairs and put some water into it from a kettle on the bedroom fire. She then went down stairs and returned with a cup and saucer. The cup had a drop of milk (not a tablespoon full) in the bottom. There was a knock at the front door and MRS ASHFORD went down stairs. I took the teapot from the fireplace to pour out the tea. I went to the washstand where the cup and saucer was and took up the spoon which was in the cup. In the spoon I saw a bluish white powder. The teaspoon was partly full. I took some of the powder between my fingers and it was gritty; I am sure it was not sugar. Deceased did not take sugar. I did not perceive any smell, and did not smell it as I thought it was arrowroot. I put the tea upon it thinking it would thicken. It did not thicken. When I saw that I thought it was not right. I looked at Mr Chown, who was by MR ASHFORD'S bedside, and shook my head. He did not say anything, and I took the tea to the deceased, who took one mouthful of it which he swallowed. He did not say anything, but when I asked him if he would have any more he shook his head. He did not speak, though he was capable of speaking. I threw the remainder of the tea in the chamber utensil. There was a drop of clean water in it at the time, but nothing else. MRS ASHFORD then returned to the room. She said "What have you done with the tea?" I said "I have given MR ASHFORD a little." I then went down stairs, leaving MRS ASHFORD and Mr Chown in the bedroom. I did not tell MRS ASHFORD what I had done with the remainder of the tea. I found my husband in the front kitchen. He had come to bring me the key of our house as he was going on duty. I told him what I had seen, and he asked me if I could get the tea I had thrown into the utensil. I told him I could not, and he told me to keep my eyes about me and see if anything else took place. In consequence I went back to the bedroom, and my husband went on duty. I remained some hours in the bedroom. Mr Chown remained till ten o'clock, when he left. MRS ASHFORD was in and out of the room. Deceased did not ask for anything more to drink that I heard. Directly after, Mr Chown left, and deceased's brother, THOMAS ASHFORD, came into the room. When the time came for deceased to take his medicine, THOMAS ASHFORD asked me for a cup to administer it. The medicine was taken from a bottle which bore a label marked, "two tablespoonfuls every two hours." It was a clear liquid, like water. I brought a cup from the washstand, and saw a wet powder at the bottom. The cup smelt of the medicine which deceased was taking. Before putting the medicine in the cup I showed the powder to THOMAS ASHFORD. It was the same kind of powder I had noticed in the tea cup. The cups were not the same. I scraped some of the powder off with my finger, and put the powder on a piece of newspaper. THOMAS ASHFORD asked me if I was going to keep it – because if I did not he should. He said if his brother died he should try to find out what it was. I placed the paper in my purse, washed out the cup, and deceased took his medicine from his brother. During this time MR ASHFORD was asleep on a bed which was laid on the floor. I remained in the room with THOMAS ASHFORD, till one o'clock on Saturday morning. Just before I left MR ASHFORD had a fit, and this woke up MRS ASHFORD. He was very pale, the limbs very stiff, and his back was drawn backwards. His eyes were open and fixed. He made no noise. The fit lasted about six or seven minutes. After the fit was over deceased lay very quiet, and partly recovered his colour. I thought he was dying, and was frightened. Leaving MRS ASHFORD, the nurse, and THOMAS ASHFORD in the room, I left. In the afternoon of Friday deceased had complained to me several times that he felt very queer, and did not known what was the matter with him. While deceased was in the fit MRS ASHFORD sat by the fire and made great noise, crying and groaning. She said, "My husband is dying!" I said, "No, MRS ASHFORD, no." She said, "He is; don't deceive me; stand back let me look at him!" He was then recovering. I said, "It is a convulsive fit;" and she said "Ah! and he will go off in them." When my husband came home, I believe about four o'clock, I told him I had got something more. – [Mr Friend, who appeared on behalf of MRS ASHFORD, suggested that that was hardly evidence; but the Coroner said he would have an opportunity of meeting that elsewhere.] - When I got up in the morning I gave the paper containing the powder to my husband. It was in the same state as when I put it in the purse. About eight o'clock I went in to see deceased again. I saw MRS ASHFORD downstairs. I asked how her husband was, and she said he was just the same. After breakfast I went in again – about nine o'clock. I went into deceased's bedroom, and asked him how he was? He said, "Oh! very, very bad!" He looked worse. His eyes were sunken, and the flesh round them very dark. I stayed there until eleven o'clock. On the washstand I found a wine glass, which I had left clean over-night, with some more of the same powder in it and smelling of the medicine which deceased was taking. I took out some of the powder with my finger. I put this also upon a piece of paper. I gave it to my husband. The sister-in-law of deceased (AGNES ASHFORD) was in the room when I did this and saw me. I aid to her, "Look here – there is a settlement in this glass that MR ASHFORD'S medicine has been in, and there is no settlement in the medicine bottle. I am going to leave, and do you see that MR ASHFORD has a clean thing to take his medicine in." I then left, and did not go again till four o'clock, when I found MRS ASHFORD, AGNES ASHFORD, and Abraham Clarke, upstairs helping deceased into bed. He had had a fit similar to that on the preceding night. MRS ASHFORD asked me to stay a bit. I remained with deceased some time. AGNES ASHFORD was with me, but MRS ASHFORD went down stairs, and Abraham Clarke was gone. Deceased said he was in agony. He said this without any asking. He asked for his wife. AGNES said she was gone down stairs to get some tea. He then asked if she was coming up there to have her tea. AGNES said she did not know, and he replied that it did not make any difference. MRS ASHFORD came upstairs again, and on being told that deceased had asked for her, she asked me to go downstairs, as she had placed the fryingpan on the fire, and to cut off some beef and cook it for the men as they had had no dinner. While I was doing this – not ten minutes afterwards – I heard a bumping on the floor. I ran upstairs and found the deceased out of bed on his knees, and his wife and sister-in-law supporting him. He was in a fit. I helped them to get him upon a chair. He stayed there some time while the fit was on him, which was longer than usual. During this fit Dr Roberts came in. He said that deceased was dying, and he died almost immediately. MRS ASHFORD went downstairs, and Dr Roberts enquired if deceased had brought up or brought off anything, and something was shown him. He asked if there was anything else, and I pointed out the glass on the washstand. He took possession of this, and I then left. Mr Roberts was instructed to make a post mortem examination of the body of WILLIAM ASHFORD, and the Coroner's Inquiry was adjourned till last evening, when Mr Lionel Roberts said, I am a surgeon of Exeter. I attended the deceased, WILLIAM ASHFORD, for about four days. His wife came to me on Tuesday, October 31st. She said that her husband was ill – suffering from sickness and diarrhoea, and asked me to give her some medicine for him. The next morning I went and saw him about eleven o'clock. I found him suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea. I told him to send in for some more medicine and let me know how he was on the Thursday morning. They accordingly sent in and said ASHFORD was no better; but I preferred to see him before I gave him any more medicine. I saw him again and found him still vomiting; I asked his wife if she had given him the medicine regularly, and she replied, "Yes." I then asked to see the bottle and box containing the medicine which I had prescribed; and found that instead of four pills that ought to have been taken only two had been taken. Four doses of the mixture had been taken. I asked the reason it had not been taken regularly, and she said she did not understand the label. I then asked her if she could read, and she replied, "Yes." I then said the label was written plain enough for any child to read. She simply replied that she did not understand it; but said she would give it regularly in future. I thought it great neglect on her part and spoke a little sharply, as I was not satisfied at the case not progressing more favourably. I saw him on Friday in company with Dr Miles, and found him very prostrated; no pulse perceptible at the wrist, and vomiting still continuing. Fresh medicine was prescribed for him, and I saw him again in the evening. I found him in about the same state. I saw him again on the Saturday morning, and again that afternoon. He was then in a dying state, and he died within a few minutes after I came. When I first saw him I did not see any reason why he should not do well. I did expect from the treatment ordered that the disease would have yielded. My suspicions were not at all aroused up to Saturday morning when Policeman Butt came to my house and asked me if I was aware of anything being given my patient except the medicine ordered; I replied "No." He then showed me a powder in a packet containing a small quantity in a dry state, of a bluish white colour. I had no idea what it was. I kept it, and a portion of it is still in my possession. That fact aroused my suspicions; but I am not at present able to state positively what it was. The medical gentleman then stated that he put the retchings of the deceased into a bottle, sealed it, and gave it to the policeman. Mr Roberts further said that in conjunction with Mr Warren he had made a post mortem examination. Mr F. Hobson Warren, Surgeon, of Exeter, said, - The body of the deceased was apparently in healthy condition. The brow was contracted and the whole appearance of the face was harsh and far from being placid. There was no mark of violence on the external part of the body. The lungs were perfectly healthy, with the exception of a slight old adhesion at the left lung. There was about an ounce and a half of fluid in the whole cavity of the chest. The pericardium contained a little extra fluid. The heart was in a perfect condition; and in fact there was no indication of inflammatory action on the surface of either the stomach or intestines. He minutely described the course pursued in the post mortem examination; and stated that the brain of the deceased was perfectly healthy.
It was understood that the medical gentlemen did not discover the cause of death by the post mortem examination. The contents of the stomach and so forth will be sent to Mr Herepath, of Bristol, for analysis. In addition to her evidence of the preceding day Mrs Butt stated that when MRS ASHFORD was taken into custody the woman took something from her pocket and threw it into the fire. AGNES ASHFORD asked her sister-in-law what it was, but MRS ASHFORD made no reply. William Chown gave evidence entirely corroborating that adduced by Mrs Butt so far as it related to Chown's presence in the bed room of deceased.
THOMAS ASHFORD, brother of deceased, residing in St. Thomas, Exeter, described the particulars of the scene in the bed room of his brother precisely as it was detailed by Mrs Butt; and the witness stated that he had strong suspicions that things were not quite right. The only reason that made him think so was that his brother had frequently told him that he did not live comfortable with his wife.
William Pratt was examined. He said he was a journeyman shoemaker and lived in the house of the deceased. The Coroner handed Pratt a letter and asked him if he knew who wrote it? After some hesitation Pratt admitted that the letter was in his handwriting. The Coroner then presented another letter to Pratt and asked him if he knew the handwriting? Pratt: Yes; that's MRS ASHFORD'S. These letters were read by Mr Maxwell, the deputy chief constable. Pratt wrote to MRS ASHFORD whilst he was at Dawlish; and her letter was in answer to Pratt's. The style in which the letters was couched leaves very little doubt as to the existence of an improper intimacy between MRS ASHFORD and Pratt.
The CORONER said that they had proceeded with the investigation as far as it was possible at the present time and he adjourned the Inquiry till the 20thinstant at twelve o'clock.
Wednesday 22 November 1865, Issue 5191 – Gale Document No. Y3200707777
THE POISONING CASE AT CLIST HONITON. VERDICT OF WILFUL MURDER.
The adjourned Inquest on the body of WILLIAM ASHFORD was held at the Duke of York Inn on Monday, before R. Brent, Esq., Deputy Coroner.
William Pratt identified several letters as having been written by the accused to him, and by him to the accused. [These letters, as we have already stated, point directly to the conclusion that an improper intimacy had subsisted between Pratt and the prisoner.]
The CORONER: You are expected to answer every question put to you by the Court. You are not bound to criminate yourself, but you must be careful to speak the truth. Now in the letter marked No. 1, in one portion you say, "I hope you will not do as you was speaking to me about the old man." Do you recollect that portion of the letter?
PRATT: No, I do not recollect it. [Pratt then looked at the letter, but he still adhered to his statement.]
The CORONER: You do not know what it means?
PRATT: No, I do not.
The CORONER: Had you and the prisoner any conversation about the deceased regarding his dying?
PRATT: No, not as regards his poisoning.
The CORONER: No, but have you had any conversation regarding his dying? PRATT: On Thursday, whilst master was lying ill, at supper time, I asked MRS ASHFORD how master was; she said he was very ill. My reply was that I thought if master did live over that night he would recover. Her reply was, "I do not know FRANK, he is very ill indeed." The apprentice, James Blackmore, was present at the time. On the Friday morning I enquired after my master again, and I then went to the shop. The apprentice Blackmore was there, and he said that if his master died, he should be out of his time. I said, "Young man, I think you will find out your mistake, for master will recover this." His reply was, "Oh, he will never live to die." It did not strike me that that was a remarkable expression for a boy to make. On the Friday I was called by Mrs Butt to go and help the deceased. I went; MRS ASHFORD was the only person in the room when I got there, but others came in soon after. MRS ASHFORD was succouring the deceased who was on the floor. She seemed to be fainting, and I helped her to a chair. P.C. Butt put the deceased into bed. I then left. The next morning about six o'clock I was called from bed by Mrs Brewer to come and help deceased. I did so, and was not in the room two minutes. I did not see him alive after that; I do not believe I went into the room after. On the Saturday, about four o'clock in the afternoon, Mrs Butt came and asked me to go and help deceased, as he was dying. I did not go because I had seen him twice, and he looked so fierce that I could not bear to look at him. I said to Mrs Butt, "Oh! Mrs Butt, I cannot go to him; who can I get?" Abraham Carter was then sent for. About an hour after that, news was brought to the workshop that master was dead. I was frightened, and stopped work. The only other thing that occurred at that time was that Dr Roberts asked for a clean bottle, and I got him one. Another was procured by Henry Baker, but I do not know for what they were required. After MR ASHFORD'S death I saw MRS ASHFORD in the kitchen. THOMAS ASHFORD the deceased's brother, was present – in fact he requested me to come in. MRS ASHFORD was in a fainting state. I remained there a minute or two, and then left and went to some friends. A young man named Dyer said he should like to see my master, I said, "I have no doubt but what you can come in." He went in with me as far as the first kitchen. Dr Roberts was there, and he said, "What do you men want?" and told us to go out, which we did. We wondered at the doctor ordering us in the way he did. I did not enter the house again for the night, and I had no conversation with MRS ASHFORD. I slept at the blacksmith's that night. I first went to work with MR ASHFORD upwards of four years ago. I had my meals and slept in the house. I was paid by the piece up to last Christmas twelvemonths, when I left him and went to Dawlish. I was there about eight months. I got better wages there. The reason of my leaving ASHFORD'S employ was that I and Mr Gould, his landlord, were not on very good terms. I had taken a half-pint too much one night, and I had said what I ought not to. Unpleasantness took place between Mr Gould and MR ASHFORD about that, and I preferred leaving rather than it should continue. During the time I was at Dawlish I visited Clyst Honiton occasionally. I think I came here three times. I went to MR ASHFORD'S house. He knew I was coming; he invited me. He called to see me at Dawlish two or three times. On one of these visits MRS ASHFORD was with him. I believe that was on the last visit. He and MRS ASHFORD urged me to come back with them. He made me promise to return to him if he got another house, because I refused to go back with him if he continued to live in the house he at present occupied. The last visit I made to Clyst Honiton, before returning to live there again, was last Michaelmas twelvemonths, and I stayed there two days. I walked to Hayes Farm the first night with master, and he kept asking me to return with him. I said, "You know what has been said, and therefore I don't like to return." What is meant by that is the intimacy which is referred to in the letters. Deceased said, "Never mind FRANK, people say what they like it shall make no difference to you. You may come with me and I will be as a father to you; you may live with me for life if you like." On the following day he repeated his request to me, but I would not agree with them, I received a letter (No. 4) partly written I believe by the deceased, and partly written by MRS ASHFORD, offering me 7s. a week if I would come back. My reply to that letter was that I should not come back unless I was paid 8s. a week, as my master at Dawlish had offered me 8s. a week. About a fortnight after I returned and continued to work for MR ASHFORD up to the time of his death. We were on very good terms; I don't believe I had three angry words from him in my life. For the last few months I was not on such good terms with MRS ASHFORD as I had been. The reason of that was that she objected to my keeping company with the young woman I did. I am engaged to that person, and I do not care about stating her name. I did not break off the correspondence with my young woman, but I broke of the "correspondence" with MRS ASHFORD. That was the reason of my disagreement. I am now living at Tipton, near Ottery. MRS ASHFORD has often quarrelled with me violently about it. I cannot repeat what she said exactly. She often had words with me about it in the presence of the deceased. He never made any reply to it. I have never heard the deceased and MRS ASHFORD quarrel about me. I have heard them frequently differ during the last few months about a will that was drawn up by the deceased unknown to the prisoner for a brother. THOMAS ASHFORD, and the father NICHOLAS ASHFORD. Since then another will was made by the deceased in favour of MRS ASHFORD, but I have since heard her tell him that he had not acted towards her as he ought to have done. I have heard them disagreeing about the former will many times after the second one was made. It brought much unpleasantness into the house. I never heard them threaten each other.
AGNES ASHFORD, the sister-in-law of the deceased, and Mrs Brewer, who officiated as nurse, described the symptoms under which the deceased suffered.
Selina Ann Ponsford, a little girl, deposed to purchasing jalap for MRS ASHFORD the Saturday night before deceased was taken ill. Mr Herepath, sen., Professor of Chemistry, Bristol, was next examined. His evidence was of great length; but being principally of a technical character it is unnecessary that we should do more than give the conclusions at which he arrived after a careful chemical analysis of the stomach and intestines which had been forwarded to him under authority of the Secretary of State for the Home Department. He found unmistakeable indications of strychnia, and had, therefore, no doubt that from the inflamed state of the stomach the person to whom it belonged died from the effects of one or more irritant poisons; and that arsenic and strychnia were the poisons administered in this case he had also no doubt. He also found arsenic in the liver and in some vomit which had likewise been sent to him for analysis. The sediment in the glass taken from deceased's bedroom was entirely white arsenic. The "vermin powder" found in the deceased's house, and marked poison, was composed principally of starch, strychnia, and Prussian blue; other parcels handed to him by the police contained more or less of arsenic. In a purse, labelled as being taken from the pocket of MRS ASHFORD, he searched in vain for a long time for anything tangible, but at length, under the edge of the catch of the purse, saw a little dust which the microscope shoed him was starch grains of the same character as he afterwards discovered in the pocket. In a pocket apparently severed from a dress nothing could be discovered on the surface; but on introducing it into a conical glass containing water and, allowing deposition to take place he found in the sediment arsenic and strychnia. In other packages he found "Vermin Powder," in which was strychnia, and arsenic, coloured with Prussian blue.
The CORONER: You have no hesitation in saying that the amount of irritant poison you found was sufficient to destroy life?
MR HEREPATH: That is another matter. Nobody could tell that. Out of the hundreds of cases I have had I never found enough to prove that, because there is always a quantity thrown off by sickness and evacuation. I am satisfied from the appearance of the stomach and intestines that the man died from an irritant poison, and I have found two poisons. I should say that the symptoms exhibited by the deceased, as stated by the witnesses, are such as are generally, although not always, shown by a person to whom arsenic has been administered. Such symptoms as described by them always precede death by strychnia. The CORONER having summed up, the Jury retired, and at the end of a quarter of an hour returned, and in answer to the Coroner the foreman said they found that the deceased, WILLIAM ASHFORD, came to his death by the administration of arsenic, and they returned a verdict of "Wilful Murder" against MARY ANN ASHFORD.
The prisoner was present during the Enquiry, a female attendant being seated beside her. She did not seem to pay much attention to the evidence, and appeared to be in a half-conscious state all the day. She had to be almost carried from the cab into the court, all her strength appearing to have left her. The room in which the Inquiry was held was a very large one, but it was completely crammed with the people of the village and neighbourhood. As may be imagined, Mr Herepath's evidence, although taking no one by surprise, created considerable sensation.
Wednesday 29 November 1865, Issue 51292 – Gale Document No. Y3200707803
EXETER – Mr H. W. Hooper, the City Coroner, held an Inquest on Monday at the Fireman's Arms, on the body of an old man named JOSEPH MITCHELL, who died on the previous day. The deceased was crippled, and had no friends. He refused to remain in the workhouse, and the last few years of his life have been spent in prison under various sentences for vagrancy. Mr Roper, surgeon, said the deceased died from Natural Causes, accelerated by want of nourishing food. The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.
Wednesday 29 November 1865, Issue 51292 – Gale Document No. Y3200707799
TIVERTON – SARAH MARSHALL, a widow, employed at the Lace Factory, was accidentally drowned in the mill stream on Friday morning. The deceased left her home early in the morning with strong indications that she intended going to the factory; but on her way it is supposed that she was blown into the water. Verdict – "Found Drowned."
Wednesday 6 December 1865, Issue 5193 – Gale Document No. Y3200707835
MONKOKEHAMPTON – The cause of the death of MR WILLIAM HILL, of Wood Barton, has been made the subject of a Coroner's Inquiry. Deceased was eighty years old. He discharged his servant man (John Lugg), who stubbornly remained on the premises after his employer ordered him to leave; this led to a further wrangle between them, and soon afterwards MR HILL was discovered a corpse. There was a scar on his forehead and some scratches, and it was quickly rumoured that Lugg had caused the death of the poor old man. But there was nothing in the evidence that any way justified such a conclusion, and the Jury returned an open verdict – "Found Dead." The scar on the forehead and scratches were probably the result of MR HILL'S falling at the time when seized with death.
Wednesday 27 December 1865, Issue 5196 – Gale Document No. Y3200707912
TIVERTON – Mr Coroner Mackenzie held an Inquest on Saturday at Pasmore Hayes Farm upon the body of WILLIAM WALTERS, aged fifty-four. Verdict, "Died from the Visitation of God". The brother of the deceased came to Tiverton on the day of the Inquest to spend the Christmas with his brother, of whose sudden death he only then learnt.
Last updated: 30 Dec 2014 - Brian Randell
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