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Colonial Cases


The Observer, 29 September 1797

An inquest was on Tuesday held at Ropsley on the body of Joseph Kirk, who hanged himself in the wood adjoining that town.  The body was discovered by some children who were nutting, and is supposed to have hung there a considerable time, as the flesh had entirely separated from the bones, and it was with some difficulty that the scattered remains were collected together.


The Observer, 16 September 1798

SPILISBY. - A poor gravelling man was found a few days ago in a wood near this town, almost speechless, so that no distinct account could be obtained from him who he was: he merely articulated the word "Norwich."  He was immediately removed, and proper food and medicine administered, but he lived only two days.  A Coroner's Inquest sat on his body, and brought in a verdict that he died by the visitation of God.  On his linen was marked W. W.


The Observer, 10 March 1799

   A poor woman, a few says since passing some sailors in Liverpool, was jostled into a cellar, when the injury she received by the fall occasioned her death in the workhouse, wither on discovery she was conveyed.



The Observer, 2 February 1800

GAINSBOROUGH - A young woman on Friday set off from hence to walk to Owmby, 12 miles distant, but on the way she went a little distance from the road to a haystack, where she delivered herself of a child, which she threw into an adjoining ditch, and proceeded on her journey.  The Coroner has held an inquest on the infant, but could not ascertain whether it had been still born.


The Observer, 2 February 1800

   As Samuel Jarvis, a labourer, was some days since felling a tree, at Bourne, the branches in falling caught against another tree, and in endeavouring to part them, his neck became entangled between them, and in a few minutes he was strangled.


The Observer, 1 March 1800

STAMFORD. - A farmer named Popple, of Pilsgate, was some days since attacked by two ruffians near Leicester, who beat him to such excess, that he survived only a few hours. - Two men are in custody on suspicion of the offence.


The Observer, 2 November 1800

   A young woman of Louth, on Sunday last, put a period to her life, by means of poison; a disappointment in live induced the act, which the coroner's inquest has ascribed to lunacy.


The Observer, 17 January 1802

   A young woman in service, near Louth, last week delivered herself of a female child, unknown to any part of the family, and strangling the infant, buried it in an out-building.  The body was found soon after, and the inhuman mother has been committed to Lincoln gaol, charged by the Coroner's Inquest with wilful murder.


The Observer, 31 January 1802

   Mr. Aaron Kirk, a farmer at Springthorpe, near Gainsborough, was found hanging on a tree in his orchard, on Thursday morning.


The Observer, 10 October 1802

   A poor man named Booth, at Ferry in Lincolnshire, 75 years of age, about a fortnight since cut his throat wish an old rusty knife, which tore the neck in a shocking manner; he, however, lived in great agony for six days, frequently attempting to enlarge the wound, with a view to accelerate his dissolution.  The coroner's inquest found a verdict of lunacy.


The Times, 14 September 1807
  On Wednesday evening a Coroner's Inquest was held on the body of a Gentleman, who came by the Nelson coach to the Swan and Talbot Inn, Stamford, on Tuesday night.  A few minutes after alighting from the coach, he dropped down and expired.  It appeared h had taken a place in the coach from London to Carlisle; but the only clue to his residence or connections, was a card in his pocket, inscribed - RICHARD BANKS, Adelphi, Strand."  To this address a letter was forwarded by the Coroner.  The deceased was found to have ruptured a blood-vessel in a fit of coughing, and the jury returned a verdict - Died by the visitation of God.


Cambrian, 12 January 1811

Melancholy Occurrence.

An inquest was held on Friday se'nnight, in Gosberton fen, Lincolnshire, on the body of Matthew Slator, a labouring man, whose death was occasioned by partaking of some cake on the preceding Wednesday, at the house of a shepherd, named Vellum, in which a quantity of mercury had been accidentally mixed.  The circumstances connected with this event are particularly distressing.

   It appeared in evidence before the Coroner, that some mercury was brought to the shepherd's home at Michaelmas to mix with seed wheat, and that a considerable part of the poison remained, which Vellum was desired to destroy.  The caution was unfortunately not attended to; and about a month since, the shepherd's wife, in order to destroy vermin , put a handful of mercury and the like portion of flour on a plate in the  dairy, without mentioning the circumstance to any one.  On Sunday, her mother and sister, who were engaged in cleaning the dairy, supposed that the plate contained flour only, emptied the contents into a luncheon of flour.

   On Wednesday morning some neighbours (about eight in number) were invited by Vellum and his wife to spend a Christmas evening with them; and several cakes were made for the occasion, of which the party present partook.  Shortly after, they were all seized with violent pains and sickness, and on inquiry into the probable cause, the circumstances above related were explained.  Fortunately, one of the party had strength enough left to inform a neighbour of their situation, who went to procure medic al aid; but as the distance was four miles, it was midnight before Mr. Brocklesby, an apothecary at Gosberton, arrived. 

   He found the poor people in a satiation the most forlorn and miserable, neither fire nor candle at hand, and at least half-a-mile from any house.  Poor  Slater had expired an hour before Mr. B. arrived, and the others were stretched on the floor nearly in a lifeless state; Mr. B. however in the course of a few hours, had the satisfaction so far to bring them about as to entertain hopes of their recovery, and they all, except the mother of the shepherd, are now considered to be out of danger. - The above case presents a fatal proof of the danger attendant on leaving poison (of any kind) in places where there is a possibility of its being misapplied. - Vellum had before been a sufferer b y his negligence, as a short time previous two of his pigs died, in consequence of some of the mercury having been accidentally mixed with their food.


Carmarthen Journal, 23 February 1811

   Monday se'nnight at Ewerby, near Sleaford, Lincolnshire, an Inquest was held on the bodies of two fine children, twins, named Francis and Richard Richardson, sons of a cottager in that parish, who were drowned in a pit near their father's dwelling.  The poor little boys were remarkable for the extremely affectionate attachment they bore to each other, and were never happy when separated.  One of them, it is supposed, adventured upon some rotten ice in the pit in which they were found, a few days ago, and the anxiety of the other to save him from  danger proved fatal to them both.  They were about six years of age, and, by their amiable manners had attracted much notice.  The Jury returned a verdict of - Found Drowned.


Carmarthen Journal, 13 April 1811

      Saturday the Burton-Stather ferryman, in conveying over two or three passengers and a horse, set his sail, which so frightened the horse, that he became ungovernable, and kicked his owner and the ferryman into the water; both were seen to come up twice, but could not be saved.  The other persons sustained no injury.


Carmarthen Journal, 17 August 1811

   On Sunday se'nnight, an inquest was taken at Peterborough, Lincolnshire, before Thomas Atkinson, Gent. on view of the body of a little girl, named Mary Standevan, who, as she was endeavouring, in company with another little girl, to get out a dead fish from a pond, fell into the water and as downed, before any assistance could be rendered to her. Verdict - Accidental death.


Cambrian, 2 November 1816

Caution to Parents. - On Monday an inquest was held by the Coroner for Lincoln, on the body of a child whose death was occasioned by the poison imbibed from a brass ring, which being given it to play with, it had put into its mouth.


Cambrian, 3 January 1818

An inquest was held at the Castle of Lincoln, on Tuesday week, by Mr. Bunyan, coroner, on the body of John Raithby, the Theddlethorpe murderer.  This unhappy mortal fell a pray to the remorse he felt for the bloody deeds he had committed at Theddlethorpe, on the 7th October last; which he confessed most unreservedly, and with every mark of sincere repentance.  It is stated that ever since  his committal he had been increasingly inn prayer; and his agony of mind, accompanied with visions of horror, continued day and night, till nature sunk under the conflict.  The verdict was "Died from excessive grief."


The Cambrian, 17 January 1818

Melancholy Accident. - On Friday morning a most melancholy accident occurred at Stamford, at the newly-erected magnificent hotel there during the time Sir Robert Heron was lodging in the house, accompanied by several of his friends on their canvass.  The party had dined at the hotel on Thursday, and sat late, so that some of the servants of the inn were not able to retire till about half past two o'clock on Friday morning.

   At that time, Sarah Holden (a niece of Mrs. Priest, landlady), 17 years old, and a chair-woman, named Mary Hobbins, 30 years of age, took up stairs a pan of coals from the kitchen grate, and put them into the fire-place of their chamber, for the purpose of warming their feet before they got into bed.  Unfortunately, the flue of the chimney had been stopped up, and consequently the vapour from the burning coals circulated through the chamber.  The unfortunate woman, exhausted by a long day's labour, sat down by the fire they had provided, and were soon (as it is supposed) overcome by drowsiness.  They slept, to wake no more! For when, at eight o'clock, Mrs. Priest went up to the chamber to call them, they were dead, suffocated by the exhalation from the coals.  The young woman sat in a chair near the fire-place, her head reclining on her breast; the elder sufferer lay on the ground: both, it is supposed by the medical gentleman was was immediately called in, had been dead for several hours.  The distress occasioned in the inn by this accident can be but faintly described.  Both the lifeless persons had been on the previous night in perfect health and activity, and the younger was perhaps as fine a woman as was ever seen.  The other was the wife of Mr. Priest's head man on his Ketton farm, and has left a husband and three infants. - Out of respect to so melancholy a visitation, the canvassing in Stanford was suspended, and Sir R. heron and his friends quitted the town. - The Coroner's inquest, held in the course of the day, returned a verdict: - Died accidentally by Suffocation.


Cambrian, 7 April 1821

   A murder of the most cruel and atrocious nature has been committed near Whaplode, near Holbeach.  A Coroner's inquest was held last week, at the Lamb and Flag public-house, in the former place, on the body of S. Cawthorne, wife of John Cawthorne, labourer, aged 20, who, after the examination of several witnesses, among whom were three eminent surgeons, the jury returned a verdict of Wilful Murder against the husband; it appearing in evidence that he had made an attempt to destroy the deceased on Monday, the 19th, by mixing poison with some thickened milk, which she ate, but which not immediately effecting the hellish purpose, the woman lived in great agony until yesterday week, when, from the appearance of her throat, he is supposed to have strangled her.  The wretch, who was in custody during the proceedings of the jury, conducted himself in a hardened manner.  He is committed to Lincoln castle.


Cambrian, 27 October 1821

 Love and Madness. - A correspondent who favours us, says an evening paper, with his name and address, has conveyed to us the following melancholy and extraordinary narrative: - Miss Wright, daughter of a respectable professional gentleman, of Bottesford, near Grantham, in Lincolnshire, had, for a considerable time, with the approbation of her family, received the address of the Rev. Mr. Towne, the clergyman of the same village.  This gentleman left his house on Friday evening last on horseback, but shortly after called on Miss Wright, who accompanied him, as was supposed by her family,  for an evening  walk.  Her not returning home at the usual time, only excited an ordinary degree of surprise; her absence was accounted for by supposing, from their extreme intimacy, that they had gone off to Gretna-Green, as their intended union had not met with the entire approbation of the gentleman's friends.  The gentleman's horse having been found turned up in a neighbour's close, naturally strengthened the above supposition.  Inquiry was then made at all the neighbouring inns where it was likely to obtain post-horses, but no intimation could be obtained.  The mystery was not of long continuance, for at five o'clock on Sunday morning, the father of the young lady was called from bed, and to his soul-sickening surprise, was told that his daughter would be found dead in the neighbouring plantation of Mr. F-----.  A candle and lanthorn were immediately procured, when the information was found to be too true; the lady lay as if a sleep, with her head upon her arm, which was bloody, wrapped in Mr. Towne's surtout and handkerchief.  It appears they had both taken a large quantity of laudanum.  When the lady was removed top her father's house, she was not quite cold, appeared asleep, and as blooming as when alive; but in a short time her colour fled, and she assumed the appearance of death.  By this dreadful affair, the deceased family, which is large, is involved in great sorrow and distress.  An inquest was held on the body, and a verdict returned - Died by taking poison in a state of insanity


Cambrian, 15 December 1821

   Our readers will doubtless remember an account, with which we presented them some weeks since, of the Curate of Bottesfield and a young lady, to whom he was attached, having absented themselves from the village and retired to a neighbouring wood, where, in consequence of the opposition of their relatives to their union, they mutually agreed to take poison, by which the young lady died, but the gentleman having, in his agitation, spilled some part of his portion, escaped that death which he afterwards attempted to attain by cutting his throat.  The inquest on the young lady returned a verdict of - Died in a fit of temporary insanity, caused by taking poison.  Continued inquiry had disclosed circumstances which render the young clergyman's account suspect, and his subsequent elopement has not tended to allay suspicion.

   It has been discovered that the young lady did not, as it was affirmed, procure the poison from her father's dispensary. It is doubted if the lover took poison at all, and the appearances on his neck show that the wounds were such as could not, at the time of their infliction, have endangered his life.  The poor girl, it has, since her death, been discovered, was en famille.  The retreat of Mr. Towne, who withdrew with his mother, has not been discovered.  His relations are persons of wealth and consideration.  The young lady's father, who is distracted with grief, id a gentleman of professional talent and great respectability. - Stamford News.


North Wales Gazette (Bangor), 10 July 1823

   An inquest was held on Tuesday last, before William Woodall, Gent. One of the Coroners for the City of Lincoln, on the body of Mfr. Clark of the parish of St. Benedict, in that city. - It appeared that the deceased, having had occasion to get out of bed on Monday night, between eleven and twelve o'clock, accidentally fell over the chamber utensil, and cut his thigh in a dreadful manner, through the femoral artery. His wife immediately ran for a surgeon, but, before she returned, which was in a few minutes, he was quite dead.  Verdict, Accidental Death,   Mr. C. was nearly sixty years of age, and was for many years a schoolmaster in Lincoln, from which employment he retired two or three years ago. - Stamford News.


The Cambrian, 27 December 1823


   It is again our painful dory to have to record the particulars of another murder to add to the catalogue of the many which have recently taken place in different parts of the kingdom.

   It appears that a young woman, of the name of Sarah Arrowsmith, had formed a connexion with a man of the name of John Smith, a servant in the employ of  Mr. Ancient, a farmer, living at Sailby, near Alford, by whom, about three years ago she had a child, was by him again far advanced in pregnancy.  From the statement of the unfortunate woman, which was taken before the Magistrates previous to her death, it appears that on the morning of the 8th of December, Smith called her up, and put a bag of flour, by means of a fork, into the chamber window, saying at the same time, "I have brought a grinding for you," which he had promised.  On the following g day she began to make the flour into cakes, which, after baking, she gave some to her child and ate some herself.  Soon afterwards they were both taken ill.  The unfortunate woman lingered until eight o'clock, the following Thursday morning, when she expired.  An inquest was held on Friday the 12th, when the jury returned a verdict of Wilful Murder against John Smith.  He was committed to Lincoln on Saturday, to take his trial for the offence at the next assizes.

   The remainder of the cakes and the flour was produced before the jury: and on examination were found to be strongly impregnated with white arsenic.  Not less than six women partook of the cakes, all of whom are extremely ill. Sarah Arrowsmith was twenty-five years of age, and considered a very fine-looking woman; she had been attached to the prisoner for some years, and was on the eve of being married to him, as the banns had already been published twice in Sailby and Alford churches. - Doncaster Paper.


North Wales Gazette (Bangor), 18 September 1823

   On Thursday, the 28th ult. an inquest was held at Gainsborough, upon the body of Charles Jealous, pilot, who, it appeared, while smoaking his pipe, unfortunately had it broken in his mouth, and the end being forced against the roof of the palate, produced a mortification. - Verdict - died by the visitation of God.


The Cambrian, 20 November 1824

CRUEL AND MYSTERIOUS MURDERS. - A Coroner's inquest has been sitting for several days at the Old Dover public-house, Boston, Lincolnshire, on the body of Frances Smaller, aged eight years,, who was found murdered, under a quantity of corn, in a granary belonging to a Mr. Shepherd.

   Another inquest has also been sitting at the Coach and horses, in the Main Ridge, Boston, on the body of Mary Ann Hattenborough, aged nine years.

   Susannah Smaller, mother of the first, stated that she lost her child on the 8th of February last; that she left her house a few minutes before nine o'clock to go to the national School situated at the bottom of South End, and the granary, where she was found concealed under a heap of corn, is on the road to the school, and the clothes on then body she could swear to.    It seemed that the long time it had lain had entirely obliterated every feature - it presented, indeed, nothing but skin and bone.  The vermin had been very busy in destroying the body, and had eaten away the first joints of the fingers on one hand.  There were several distinct marks on the clothes, fully proving the committal of a rape.  But this was not the only mark of cruelty discovered;  round the neck and rather inclining to the extremity of one of the ears, a mark was seen, caused by the tight pressure of a cord.  The Jury returned a verdict - Wilful Murder against some person or persons unknown.

Inquest on Mary Ann Hattenborough.

   The mother of the deceased stated, that the child had been missing from about a quarter of an hour after ten o'clock on Monday night week.  The body was found nine days after the child had been missing, in a pit used for washing sheep skins, in the neighbourhood of the residence of the parents.  The clothes of the child and the right arm were strapped to the body above the middle.  - Wilful Murder against some person or persons unknown. - Boston paper.


North Wales Gazette (Bangor) 28 April 1825

   A young woman, servant to Mr. J. Ward, New-road, Lincoln, whilst picking her ear with a pin the head came off and lodged within it; and notwithstanding the best advice and means that could be obtained to dislodge it, but without effect, the poor girl now lies in a most dangerous state, and in the greatest agony ,and it is feared she will not recover.


The Cambrian, 10 January 1829

DREADFUL CALAMITY. - EIGHT PERSONS DROWNED ! On the morning of Sunday se'nnight, three trading vessels, the Phoebe, of Goole, the Helmsley, of Whitby, and the Nelly, of Hull, were lying off Spurn, when the three masters, Captain Sales, Samuel Healas, and George Briggs, agreed among themselves to spend the day with the family of Mrs. Richardson, who resides at the Spurn Light-house.  They left their respective vessels at half-past eleven on Sunday morning, in the boat of one of them, accompanied by three men and a boy, all belonging to the Phoebe, and a man belonging to one of the other vessels. Having spent some time at Mrs. Richardson's, it appears the unfortunate men got into their boat to return to their vessels, but were heard, previously to leaving the house, to express a determination to procure some cockles.  After this, nothing was heard or seen of them; they, however, never returned to theory vessels.  Considerable alarm consequently prevailed, and the most melancholy forebodings were indulged in, which were, alas ! converted into certainty by the finding of one of the bodies on Monday morning, washed up by the tide at Cleethorpes, on the Lincolnshire coast, and the subsequent discovery of the remainder in the same vicinity.  The boat has not hitherto been met with, but a bag of cockles was found near the spot where the bodies were washed ashore.  The immediate cause of this dreadful event thus remains unknown, as every person on board the boat has perished, but it is supposed they had got on Cleethorpes sand for the purpose of collecting cockles, and had returned in their boat, when, by some accident or other, the boat was upset.


The Cambrian, 27 June 1829

   A Mr. Singlethorpe died at Caythorpe, Lincolnshire, a few days ago, in consequence of taking 21 grains of opium, which an ignorant person assured him would immediately relieve him from the rheumatic gout under which he was then labouring.


Carmarthen Journal, 2 October 1829

   Between six and seven o'clock last Sunday morning, Mr. Nathaniel Fossett, shepherd, of Spalding, was going round his pastures, when he discovered a wretched woman lying on the giund, quite dead and cold.  There was a blanket lying by the side of the corpse in which were some laces, &c. and it is supposed that she was an itinerant hawker.  Some children going across the same pasture on Saturday evening, found the poor woman lying in a dyke, and assisted her out; they used their artless endeavours to prevail upon her to go to Spalding, but she refused, and it vis conjectured hat the inclemency of the weather on Saturday night caused her death. - Cambridge Chronicle.


The Cambrian, 12 March 1830

   On Monday last, Mr. J. S. Bennet, of Appleby, near Brigg, was showing to two clergymen, the improvements which have recently been made in the parish church there; he ascended the steeply, and took his station upon the parapet, supporting himself by one of the pinnacles; the frail embellishment gave way, and he was precipitated to the bottom, and expired instantly.


Carmarthen Journal, 12 March 1830

   Last Friday morning, Mr. James Grant, of this town, in a moment of excitation, arising from intoxication, put a period to his life by shooting himself, and in the afternoon an inquest was held on view of the body, which presented a dreadful spectacle; the whole of the crown of the skull was blown off, and the brains, bones, and other particles of the head, were scattered about in every direction; the brains were spread all over the room, and a considerable mass of that nervous substance was lying on the side-board; other parts had lodged on the ceiling, and even a bonnet which hung against the wall had received a portion.  The manner in which the pieces of the skull were thrown about, excited general astonishment; but it appears that so determined was the unfortunate man upon effectually destroying himself, that he must have loaded the pistol with which  he shot himself to the very muzzle;  .  .  .   A medical gentleman, who examined the body, told us that he would not have believed that the head could have been so dreadfully mutilated; he said that if several pounds of gunpowder had been placed in the skull and ignited, the effect could not have been greater.  The only remaining portions of the features visible was the chin, lips, and part of the hose, - a piece of the skull rested on the shoulder, where it had fallen, and, the appearance presented at first sight was as though a crimson handkerchief had been thrown over the face. It appears that he placed the muzzle of the pistol to his right ear, and discharged it; his consequence was the dreadful mutilation we have already adverted to.  Five bullets, we believe, have already been found.  Verdict, Insanity. - Boston Gazette.


Carmarthen Journal, 13 August 1830

   A most melancholy occurrence happened a short time ago in the neighbourhood of Harby, near Lincoln.  A young man named Bottomley, driving a cart loaded with coals from Saxilby, met with an individual or two at a public-house in that village, who very imprudently urged him to drink to excess.  Proceeding alone on his way to Harby, a distance of about three miles, after considerable difficulty he succeeded in getting upon the coals in the front of the cart, soon after he fell asleep, from which dangerous situation he was precipitated, and one of the wheels passed over his body.  The horses proceeded alone to Harby, (more than a mile from the place where the accident happened), before they were discovered; their guide had been left there in so dreadful a condition as to be unable to render himself any other assistance than by his lamentable cries, through which he was eventually discovered.  Medical aid was procured, but to no purpose; he died the following day, & was interred precisely one month after he had been married.  The poor man was able to relate the above particulars of the melancholy event, and frequently censured the individual whom he considered the most blameable in the affair.


The Cambrian, 14 August 1830

   Michael Lundy has been committed to Lincoln Castle, charged with the willful murder of Thomas Seward.  They were both Irish labourers, and had been left to sleep in the barn of a farmer, who had given them employment.  Lundy is the husband of Seward's daughter.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 4 September 1830

FRIGHTFUL DISCOVERY. - On Sunday last, as two boys were nutting in Branston Wood, near this city, shortly after separating in a lone part of the centre of the wood, one of them cried out lustily, in great terror.  On the other going to him, he found him almost "frightened to death" at the sight of am man that was hung on one of the branches of a tree.  They ran together in their fright, and procured the assistance of other people, and at length the body was cut down and removed to a small inn on the skirts of the wood.

   On Monday last an inquest was held on he remains by Mr. Bunyan, coroner.  The following are the particulars that could be learn: - The body must at least have been there six months.  He was suspended in a black silk handkerchief, the stiffener of which was in his pocket. Not a vestige of features could be discerned, the birds had literally picked out his eyes; and his clothes adhered to the decayed clayey mound of the decomposition of the body, as one mass, exposing the Skelton wherever it was disturbed.  There were 17s. in silver and 4d. in copper in hi pockets, with a  carpenter's rule and some loose tobacco papers, but not a line of writing or other means likely to lead to any discovery of who the unfortunate fellow was.  His hat and a hooked walking-stick were on the ground.  The rule and stick were ordered to be preserved by the coroner, to meet any future inquiry; no person in the neighbourhood is missing.  Verdict, Found suspended by the neck in a tree, &c. - Lincoln Herald.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 30 July 1831

   On Thursday last, while a woman who died at Grantham was being interred, her daughter, a cook to Mr. Walker, of the Cock, at Eaton, in Bedfordshire, went with her brother to attend the funeral, when as the body was lowering they both fell into the grave.  The daughter is not likely to survived, and the son, who was taken home much injured, was bled, but without hopes of recovery, and singular to relate, the surgeon who attended him was called into an adjoining room to assist a married sister of the parties, whom he delivered of twins.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 16 July 1831

MURDER AT GRIMSBY. - An affair f a most melancholy and awful nature has just occurred at Grimsby, through which one unfortunate man has suddenly been called to his account, and the life of another will, in all probability, become forfeited to the outraged laws of his country.  The laminable occurrence took place at the Duke of York public-house, kept by Mr. Dines.   At a late hour on Saturday night last, or rather on Sunday morning, two men named William Hall and Edward Button, who were drinking there, and between whom it seems some ill blood existed, quarreled, and agreed to settle tat difference by a fight.  Button pulled off his coat, and was preparing for the encounter, when Hall rushed upon him, and during the scuffle between them, drew his frock over his face and stabbed him with a knife in the side, with such fatal violence that the weapon penetrated to the heart, and he fell dead upon the spot.

   Hall and a woman named Ratton, who was somehow involved in the transaction, were immediately taken into custody.  A coroner's inquest sat upon the body of the deceased on Sunday afternoon, and after an investigation which lasted from half-past three o'clock till nine, returned a verdict f willful murder against William Hall, who was conveyed to Lincoln Castle on Monday morning, to take his trial at the ensuing assizes.

   It is stated that the cause of the ill will between the prisoner and the deceased was, the latter's having assisted some time ago to turn him out of a house in which he had misconducted himself.  It is also asserted that there is evidence of his having declared his intention at some time or other "to do for" the unfortunate deceased.  The murdered man, who bore a good character, has left a widow and several small children.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 3 September 1831

   M. J. G. Favell, dealer in British and foreign lace, at Spalding, and also a local preacher among the Wesleyan Methodists, poisoned himself on Sunday night week, after having preached twice that day. Coroner's Verdict, Insanity.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 7 April 1832
CURIOUS NEST. - Some years ago a man of the name of Tom Otter murdered is sweetheart, at a lace called Drinset Nook, in Lincolnshire; .  .  .


Glamorgan Gazette, 16 March 1833
  It is our painful duty to record one of the most inhuman and daring murders that have been committed in this county for some time, which happened about a mile and a half this side the village of Heckington, on Saturday last, in the broad light of day.  The name of the unfortunate man is Wm. Durbank, a well-known character in his capacity of a collector of hare skins, rags, &c.; and it appeared from what we can collect that he went into a beer shop in Heckington, about 3 o'clock in the afternoon of Saturday last, where the prisoner and others were drinking, and unfortunately spoke too freely of some money, in the sum of about 12 Pounds, which he said he had in his pocket.    After spending about an hour at the beer shop he left to proceed to Boston, but when only about a mile and a half on the road he was overtaken by the prisoner, knocked down, and most brutally maltreated by him, his brains being literally dashed out; his pockets were ransacked, and of course all the money in his possession carried off.  In this state the unfortunate man was left, and was found about half past 4 by Captain Whyte and the Rev. Mr. Berrage, who immediately gave the alarm, and the unfortunate man was conveyed to the public house at Heckington.
  On Monday an inquest was held on the body before Mr. C. Austin, coroner, and a verdict of Wilful Murder returned against Wm. Taylor, of Heckington, who was immediately committed under the Coroner's warrant to Lincoln castle, to take his trial at the present assizes.  The prisoner has since made a full confession. - Boston Herald.

Monmouthshire Merlin, 11 May 1833
A LUNATIC BURNT TO DEATH. - On Friday last, smoke was perceived to issue from one of the windows in the room of a patient, named Charles Stephenson, in Lincoln Lunatic Asylum, who had been setting fire to himself.  Although the fire was inclosed by fences which seemed to prevent the possibility of access, yet the wretched lunatic had contrived to effect his purpose.  He explained that, having twisted a number of pieces of paper, and inserted them one within the other till they reached the length of two feet,  he had inserted them through, or under the bars of the range, and procured a light; that he then unbuttoned his coat and waistcoat, and  fire to his linen near his heart.  The poor creature lingered till Tuesday; he showed great insensibility to pain, and it appeared doubtful whether he would ever have made his dreadful situation known, had it not been discovered.  An inquest was held upon the body, and a verdict to the effect that he destroyed himself in a state of lunacy was returned. He was sixty-three years of age, and had been for five months in the Asylum. - Boston Herald.

Monmouthshire Merlin, 11 May 1833
  An aged and infirm woman, named Maria Taylor, upwards of eighty years of age, lost her life at Saxy, near Melton Mowbray, on Monday last, under the following circumstances.  She went in the afternoon into a field belonging to Mr. Kirbby, to gather sticks; and whilst she was near the hedge, in a stooping position, a bullock (one of a number grazing near the spot) ran at her and wounded one of her arms.  The sight of blood had the effect of causing several others in the herd to attack her,  as is known often to be the case, and they gored the unfortunate woman till she was so disfigured, that, when first found, her features could not be distinguished, and her clothes were literally torn in to shreds.  Before surgical assistance arrived from Melton, the poor creature breathed her last, having previously so far recovered her senses as to be able to state the foregoing particulars.  The horns and heads of six of the cattle were stained with the blood of their hapless victim. - Stanford Mercury.

Monmouthshire Merlin, 7 December 1833
  On Tuesday last an inquest was taken before Mr. White, coroner, at Barrowby, on the body of William Smith, whose death was occasioned by drinking beer out of a gourd, which his daughter-in-law brought from Bermuda.  It appeared in evidence that this gourd, which was found to be of the cucumber tribe, about the size of a pound pear, was brought over to this country about three years ago, and only on Saturday last was presented to the daughter of the deceased, as a matter of curiosity; she being told that these bulbs were sometimes used as bottles, gave it to her father, who filed it with beer, and took it with him to his work; on Monday morning, about ten o'clock, he sat down to lunch, and drank of the beer twice, giving some to a fellow-workman, William Bee, who drank it.  Very soon afterwards they were both seized with vomitings; Smith was much the worst, and, becoming soon unable to work, was taken home in a cart.  Medical assistance was immediately procured, and every endeavor which skill could dictate to check the progress of the dysenteric symptoms under which the poor man laboured, but without the desired effect; he died about one o'clock the following morning.  His companion, it is hoped, is in a fair way of recovery.  No blame whatever attached either to his daughter or to the daughter-in-law, both of whom were equally unconscious of the effect likely to be produced by an infusion of liquid into the fungus or inner coat of the gourd, which operated as a powerful cathartic, beyond the power of medicine to cure. - Lincolnshire Chronicle.

Published by Centre for Comparative Law, History and Governance at Macquarie Law School