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Colonial Cases


The Observer, 7 May 1797

   A man employed in repairing the roof of a house in Shrewsbury, fell, in consequence of the ladder on which he stood giving way, and was crushed to pieces.  A boy, his assistant, had by the same accident his leg broke.


Cambrian, 21 December 1805

Early on Monday morning, the 9th instant, the dwelling-house of Edward Lloyd, of Coalbrook Dale, was discovered to be on fire.  As he lived alone, and was supposed to be at that time from home, the neighbours forced open the door, and soon discovered the poor man had been cruelly murdered in his bed, from appearances, about 24 hours before; and that the person or persons guilty of this atrocious crime had robbed him, and set fire to the premises on the following night, with an intention of concealing this barbarous act.  Strong suspicion however being entertained against Edward Clemson, who lived close by, and who was the person last seen to be with the deceased late on Saturday night, he was taken up, and after examination was committed to Shrewsbury country gaol, to take his trial at the next assizes.


Cambrian, 16 June 1810

The Holyhead mail coach was unfortunately overset near Oxon, about three miles from Shrewsbury, owing to the breaking of the near fore-wheel axle-tree.  In consequence of this, the coachman was thrown off the box, and the coach fell on him, by which he was so materially injured, as to stand in need of surgical assistance, which was immediately sent for; and the sufferer humanely taken into Mr. Spearman's.  The guard was momentarily aware of his situation, and leaned into the hedges]; and he, and another outside passenger, and a lad, and three gentlemen, besides, escaped with but little injury.  On the arrival of Mr., T. Sutton, the surgeon, it was found that Small, the coachman, had his breast bone, the greater part of the ribs on his right side, and his left arm fractured.  He languished in this state till four o'clock on Saturday afternoon, when he died. - A coroner's inquest was taken before Mr. G. Wingfield, on Tuesday, and a verdict of accidental death brought in by the Jury.  The horses and coach being a deodand, a fine of 5l. was laid on them. - We have authority to say, that the coach was not going so fast as its usual speed.


Cambrian, 4 January 1812


... Capture of John Williams. ...  On Friday an inquest was held on the body of John Williams, who was found dead in his cell at the Coldbath-fields prison.

   Joseph Becket, the turnkey, deposed - I locked the deceased up about ten minutes before four, yesterday afternoon; her was then alive and well; I asked him if he wanted anything - he said no; he has said during his confinement, he hoped the innocent youth would not suffer, and that the saddle might be placed on the right horse.  Between seven and eight this morning I unlocked the door of his cell; I discovered him hanging to the rail in his cell, with his feet nearly or quite touching the ground, with a white handkerchief round his neck, which handkerchief I had seen him wear; I called Knott and Harris, prisoners, who saw him cut down. ...Two prisoners also deposed as to the situation in which the deceased was found, after which the jury returned a Verdict - felo de se. ... Thence it was conveyed to the bottom of cannon-street and there interred six feet below the surface of the ground, and a stake driven through it.

   It is now ascertained that Williams was a native of Broseley, in Shropshire, which place he left some years since on account of being suspected of stealing poultry out of different farm-yards.

[See also Carmarthen Journal, 11 January.]


Carmarthen Journal, 4 April 1812

   On Monday se'nnight, J. Griffiths was executed in front of Shrewsbury gaol, pursuant to his sentence, for the murder of Wm. Nailey. ...


Cambrian, 31 October 1812

   Another horrid murder was committed on Monday night at Longford, a small village near Market Drayton, Shropshire, (about ten miles distant from the place where a Mr. Murray was murdered by his wife and servant,) on the bodies of Mr. F. Bruce, a farmer, and his housekeeper, who were both found on Tuesday morning in the kitchen with their throats cut, and the house robbed.  A man named Rowland Preston, charged with this atrocious murder, was apprehended on Sunday last in Crown-street, Soho, under the authority of a warrant from a magistrate of Shropshire, and conveyed by order of the magistrate of Bow-street, to Market Drayton. [See Carmarthen Journal, 14 November: of Lumford, native of Drayton, about 26.]


Cambrian, 5 December 1812

   The body of Mr. Evans, a farmer, of Elton, near Ludlow, was last week taken out of the river, near that town.  The deceased had been missing on the night previous, and it is conjectured that the accident was occasioned by his having lost his way on his return from market.


Cambrian, 5 December 1812

   On Wednesday, between seven and eight o'clock in the evening, as Mr. Wiggin, miller, of Aldrington, near Bridgnorth, was returning home from Wolverhampton market, he was shot at and mortally wounded by some miscreants, within a mile of his own house.  It is supposed that his horse took fright at the discharge of the piece, and galloped to the turnpike, where Mr. Wiggin fell off and expired in about three quarters of an hour.  The ball had passed through his body just below the breast.  Pursuit was instantly made after the murderer, and two suspicious persons, we understand, are in custody.  [Another account, Carmarthen Journal, 12 December.]


Cambrian, 5 February 1814

   Last week a house at Asterton, near Norbury, Salop, was thrown down by the violence of the wind and the weight of snow upon the roof.  The occupier, Wm. Poppet, with his wife and three children, were in bed, and we are grieved to state, that a beam falling on the man, his wife, and one child, crushed them to death: the other two children escaped.


Cambrian, 16 March 1816

Parricide. -A horrid murder has been committed at Holt Preen, in the parish of Cardington, Salop, on the body of Richard Franks, farmer.  Suspicions concerning the cause of his death were first excited by the circumstance of the body being interred out of his own parish; and this being intimated to J. Dicken, Esq. coroner, he ordered the body to be taken up on Monday last, after it had lain in the earth since the 7th of February.  A jury was summoned, who, after a deliberate examination of witnesses, and taking the advice of the surgeon, returned a verdict of Wilful Murder against Sam. Franks, son of the deceased.  He was committed to Salop gaol.


Cambrian, 2 August 1817

   On Saturday an inquest was taken before T. Boulton, Gent. Coroner for Bridgnorth, on view of the body of Mrs. Millard, house-keeper to the lord Bishop of St. Asaph, who was killed by a fall from the Hibernia coach, between Kidderminster and Bridgnorth.  It appeared in the evidence of a respectable woman, who was riding by the side of Mrs. M on the dickey behind the coach, that whilst they were conversing, the coach gave a sudden jerk, from an inequality of the road in the hamlet of Romsley, and threw the deceased obliquely forward; who fell upon the hinder wheel, which passed over the body.  An Irish gentleman, an inside passenger, opened a vein in the arm with a sharp penknife: but she died soon after.  Coroner's verdict, Accidental.


Cambrian, 16 May 1818

      A very violent storm of thunder, lightning, and rain, visited the neighbourhood of Shrewsbury on Wednesday: ... A ball of fire startled a team of horses at plough at Preston, near Uffington; and the man, in endeavouring to control them, was thrown down, the plough dragged over him, and he was killed on the spot.


Cambrian, 1 April 1820

      On Sunday last, the body of Mr. Robert Roberts, drover, from near Trawsfynydd, Merionethshire, was taken out of the river Severn, near the New factory, just below Shrewsbury.  The deceased fell into the river, supposed by accident, in the evening of the 4th instant; he was heard to cry out, but sunk before any assistance could reach him.


Cambrian, 16 June 1821

   Dreadful Accident. - At an early hour on Tuesday morning a part of the southern wall of the theatre at Shrewsbury gave way, and falling on the roof of an adjoining house, forced a part of it down to the kitchen floor, below the level of the street.  Unfortunately a labouring man, named Davies, with his wife and two children (one of them seven years old, the other an infant at the breast) slept in a bed in the garret, immediately under the dislocated mass, which forced them together with a quantity of large stones, timber, the bed, &c. &c. down to the kitchen, where they were buried under the heap of fallen materials.  Four other children of the same man lay in a bed in another part of the room, and providentially were unhurt.  In the room underneath, Mr. Jones, a milkman, his wife, and their niece, occupied two beds, which were situated out of the direction taken by the falling mass; the young woman, however, received some serious cuts and contusions.  Mr. Jones and his wife, on being roused by the breaking of the floors, &c. got out of bed, and with difficulty escaped.  The timber was removed as promptly as possible; but E. Davies was found a corpse;  and as the body of his wife was quite cold when taken up, it is presumed she must have died at the instant of the fall; T. Davies, their son, opened his eyes when taken from the rubbish, but died immediately; the infant was miraculously preserved, having fallen through three stories of the house, and at the same time being overwhelmed by the whole heap of materials, yet was nearly unhurt, almost under its hapless mother, two spars having met over it, and protected it from the falling rubbish.  The remaining children were taken into the house of Mr. Walton, printer, who lives opposite, and by whom Davies had for several years been employed as a newsman.  The same morning an inquest was held at the White Lion, on St. John's-hill, on the bodies of the persons killed; when a verdict was returned of - Accidental Death;  deodand 20s.


Cambrian, 17 November 1821

   Robber Shot. - The shop of Mrs. Austin, of Shiffnall, Shropshire, having been several times robbed very recently, without the family being ale to discover by what means the thief or thieves had gained access to the premises, - On Wednesday, Mr. George Austin, with two friends, Mr. Dunbar and Mr. Edmonds remained on the watch; and about one o'clock on Thursday morning a person in a smock  frock came, and commenced the operation of opening the door (which is divided into two parts), and this took him nearly an hour and half, when he entered the shop; but went out again, and shortly afterwards returned, and re-entered the shop.  Mr. Dunbar immediately seized him; but Mr. Dunbar's arms coming in contact between the upper and lower parts of the door, he was obliged to let go his hold before Mr. G. Austin could get out at the passage door to seize the robber outside, and the intruder ran off; upon which Mr. Dunbar called upon him to stop; but this challenge to surrender being  disregarded, Mr. D. fired a pistol at him, the ball from which entered his back, and passed directly through his heart; notwithstanding which, the unhappy man further ran with great speed down the Jerningham Arms Inn  yard, over the bridge, and half way towards the church; he then dropped, and never spoke afterwards.  He proved to be a young man of idle habits, of the name of Pooler.  A Coroner's Inquest was held on the body on Friday last; when a verdict of Justifiable Homicide was returned.


Salop 1822

The Salopian, 14 August 1822

INQUESTS taken before Joseph Dicken, Esq. Coroner. - On Saturday last, an inquest was held on  a man killed in a coal-pit at The Banks.  On Monday last, an inquest was held on the bodies of two poor men killed by the fire-damp in a coal-pit, near Shiffnal. And yesterday, an inquest was held on the body of a child, which fell into a pit of water, near Whitchurch, while its mother was employed in milking. - Verdicts in each case - accidental death.


Cambrian, 30 November 1822

SHROPSHIRE. - An inquest was taken on Monday last, at the parish of Quatford, before Francis Pierpoint, gentleman, Coroner, for the town and liberty of Bridgnorth, on view of the body of William Lloyd, aged five years, who was burnt top death by his clothes taking fire.  It appeared on evidence, that the deceased was left by his parents (two labouring people), together with two infant children locked in the house; and that on the return of the father, the poor child was found in the most calamitous situation, his flesh being literally scorched, yet still surviving in excruciating agony, for nearly an hour, when death happily terminated his sufferings.  The jury, under the direction of the coroner, found their verdict, "accidental from his clothes taking fire, whereby he was so dreadfully burnt as to occasion death."


Cambrian, 18 January 1823

DEATHS BY DROWNING. - On Monday morning last, in the Shrewsbury Canal, near the Gas Works, a poor woman of the name of Taylor was drowned.  She had left her hous4 for the purpose of purchasing coal, and it is supposed slipped into the water.  The Coroner's jury returned a verdict of accidental death.  What renders this accident truly afflicting, the son of the deceased happening to see a body floating in the water jumped in, and on bringing it to land, discovered that it was the person of his own mother!


North Wales Gazette (Bangor), 8 May 1823



   Mr. Pearson moved for a rule calling on the Coroner for the county of Salop, whose name he forbore to mention, to show cause why a criminal information should not be filed against him.  The circumstances under which he moved were peculiar; and the charge nearly affected the due administration of criminal justice.  It related to the suppressing and rejecting evidence in the inquest holden on the body of Mrs. Newton, who died from violence inflicted by her husband.

   The Court inquired whether the learned counsel could show enough to induce a belief that the coroner was actuated by a corrupt motive; otherwise they could not interfere.

   Mr. Pearson replied, that he believed he should succeed in convincing that such motive existed.  At the inquest held before the Coroner, a verdict was returned, that the deceased "died by bleeding."  In consequence of reports which were circulated, affecting the husband, he was apprehended, and on the evidence adduced before the magistrates, committed for trial.  At the last assizes for Shropshire, he was tried before Mr. Justice Best, when he was found guilty of murder, and afterwards executed.  It was now charged, that the Coroner had improperly refused to admit evidence which was of the highest moment to the solemn investigation over which he was called to preside.  He was informed that a person named Edwards could prove that a dispute had taken place between Newton and his wife on the day of her death, and that he then expressed his intention of beating her; and this evidence he refused to receive.  He himself talked with the witnesses, and endeavoured to persuade them that the death arose from accidental causes.  When the jury were assembled, he told them that as it was a very slight case, part of them might go home, and though they went to see the body, he endeavoured to prevent a minute examination of its members.  The medical  men who saw it found marks of violence on the limbs, and the rupture of vessels which had not arisen from any natural cause.  Although the Coroner was assured that Edwards could prove the threatening language, he refused to hear him; and the result was a verdict which was subsequently shown to be highly improper, ands which might have prevented investigation into an atrocious crime.

   The Court granted a rule to show cause.


North Wales Gazette (Bangor), 12 June 1823

   In the Court of King's Bench on Saturday, a rule had been obtained in the case of the King v. Whitcomb, to shew cause why a criminal information should not be filed against him for certain corrupt misconduct in his office, of one of the coroners for the county of Salop, upon an inquest touching the death of Mrs. Newton, whose husband had, before Mr. Justice Best, been convicted at the last Shropshire assizes, of the wilful murder of his wife, and executed.  The grounds of malversation, imputed to the defendant, were in substance these:- that, previous to holding the inquest on the body of the deceased, he had a private interview with her husband; that, upon the inquest, he suppressed the evidence of a material witness named Edwards, whose testimony tended to show that there had been a quarrel between the husband and wife on the day of her death; and that expressions had been used by the husband, importing a malignant design of doing her some bodily harm; that he dismissed twelve out of the twenty-four jurors summoned; that he allowed the improper interference of a magistrate in the deliberations of the jury; that he would not allow the jury to see any other parts than the head and face of the deceased; that he himself had examined the body of the deceased before inspection by the jury, and had caused it to be dissected; and, finally, as to the cause of death, whereby they were induced to return a verdict of - "Died from loss of blood, but how caused is to the jurors unknown."

   A variety of affidavits were put in on the part of the defendant, denying the charges, but the Lord Chief Justice interposed, and said it was with great reluctance that he ventured to stop all further discussion of the case; but without venturing to express any opinion upon the particular parts of the affidavits, which might in any degree prejudice the defendant, he should only observe, looking  to the whole of the transaction, it appeared to the Court that this matter ought to go before a jury of the country, in order that they might pronounce their opinion upon it.


The Cambrian, 4 October 1823


   On Monday an inquest was held, at Bridgnorth, before Francis Pierpoint, Gentleman Coroner for that town and its liberties, on view of the body of Richard Overfield, an infant of the age of 3 months, which came to its death in consequence of oil of vitriol being administered to it by its father !  The examinations were continued during Tuesday, and adjourned to Wednesday morning, when the Jury, under the direction of the Coroner, returned their verdict of Wilful Murder against the father, Richard Overfield.  This in natural wretch, on the same morning, (Wednesday) made an attempt upon his life, by cutting his throat in the prison; but having no instrument but a rude piece of platter (which he ground sharp), he failed in effecting his purpose.  He is now committed for trial.


The Cambrian, 22 November 1823


    At an auction at Ercall Park, in this county, two butchers quarrelled and fought.  After a few rounds, one of the combatants received a blow which terminated his existence.


The Cambrian, 10 July 1824

   On Thursday last, two youths, the sons of Mrs. Simpson of Mardol, Shrewsbury, and Mr. Griffiths bookseller, Bishop's Castle, were drowned in the Severn, while bathing in that River at the former place.


The Cambrian, 25 September 1824

   On Friday, whilst three miners were working in a pit at Groveland Colliery, in the parish of Rowley Regis, Salop, upwards or 30 tins weight of coal suddenly gave way, and killed them.

   A melancholy accident happened at Bishop's Castle, Salop, on Monday.  As three boys were playing by the side of a pump, the ground under them gave way, and a youth about seven years of age, son of Mr. Sayce, of Bishop's Castle was precipitated into the well !  After the pump was taken up, and water laden out, the poor boy was found dead, two feet below the surface, astride on a rafter which had been nailed to the tree to keep it perpendicular. The accident was occasioned by the timber being rotten upon the wall, and which gave way.


Cambrian, 27 November 1824


   At Ludlow, Mr. Edward Childe; he was in the enjoyment of perfect health the day before; but unfortunately on going to bed, fell down the at stairs, and was so much injured that he died in a few hours.


The Cambrian, 11 December 1824

   On Tuesday last, two separate inquests were held at Shrewsbury, before George Wingfield, Esq. on the bodies of an unknown male and unknown female person, which had been found packed up in two boxes, at the Coach Office, in that town, directed for "Smith and Co. Southwark, London," and which had been brought there by the Regent Coach from Holyhead, with a packet nailed thereon - "From the Packet Office Dublin."  On the porter proceeding to weigh one of the boxes, the cord broke, the box fell to the floor, and the end broke out, when the grey head of a dead man made its appearance !  The proprietor of the coach-office had the fact communicated to the Magistrates, and the boxes were, under their direction, conveyed to the Guildhall, where, on examination, the body of an aged thin man was found in one, and an elderly thin woman in the other. - A respectable surgeon gave his opinion that the bodies were those of persons who had died in a natural way; and the Jury, in each case, found a verdict, that the person unknown had been found dead (under the above circumstances). - The bodies, no doubt, were subjects going to London for dissection.


The Cambrian, 1 January 1825

   On the 13th inst. we published an account from one of the London papers of an inquest which had been held at Shrewsbury, on two human bodies, a male and a female. .  .  .  .   Mr. Pearson has admitted that he was the person who sent them.  He is fully committed to take his trial for the offence. - Dublin Morning Post.


North Wales Gazette (Bangor), 21 July 1825

   Mr. Steventon, of Shrewsbury, died last week of locked jaw, brought on by a slight wound on the finger by a rusty hoop.


The Cambrian, 21 January 1826

   The Rev. E. Jones, of Treddyn, near Wrexham, was the gentleman who accidentally fell into the Severn above the Welsh bridge, Shrewsbury, and was drowned, as stated in our last.


The Cambrian, 10 June 1826

CHARGE OF MURDER. - Friday last, an Inquest was held at Bridgenorth, before James Milner, Gent. Coroner, and a respectable Jury, on view of the body of a fine male bastard child which was found smothered in a privy near the Raven street, in that town.  It appeared in evidence, that the inhuman mother (one Esther Dyos, a stranger, who had resided a few months in Bridgenorth), had delivered herself, and destroyed the child as above.  The Jury, after a short deliberation, returned a verdict of Wilful Murder against the said Esther Dyos, who stands committed under the Coroner's warrant to the County Gaol, to take her trial at the  next Assizes.


The Cambrian, 5 January 1828
MELANCHOLY ACCIDENT. - A sad occurrence took place at Bridgnorth, on Wednesday se'nnight.  Three cannon had been cast to be used on Monday next, in the celebration of the coming of age, on the previous day, of the son of Mr. Whitmore, one of the members for the borough.  On the day mentioned they were brought out for trial, when one of them burst from a spark igniting the charge in the act of ramming down, by which an individual standing in front was so dreadfully injured that he survived but six hours; and owner Thos. Brondfield, well known as a Severn carrier between Worcester and Bridgnorth, had his leg so much shattered as to render necessary immediate amputation above the knee. .  .  .  . 


The Cambrian, 14 June 1828

Lieut. Gill, of the Shropshire militia, was on Monday found dead in bed at his lodgings in Mardol, Shrewsbury.  Mr. Gill had gone to rest in apparent health, and, from his appearance, expired in the utmost tranquillity.  He had been many years suffering from disease, occasioned by a determination of blood to the head.


Carmarthen Journal, 11 July 1828

MURDER DISCOVERED. - A murder, perpetrated 12 months ago, in this county, has just been brought to light.  At last summer assize, Thomas Ellson was tried for stealing a sheep, the property of Mr. Bradbury, of Drayton; but the principal witness James Harrison, aged 21, had disappeared, and the prisoner was consequently acquitted.  Last week Ellson was again apprehended for stealing two fowls, the property of Mr. Jervis, of Prees, and when questioned by Mr. Tremlow, the magistrate, respecting the mysterious disappearance of Harrison last year, he declared that on his return home after trial, he was informed that Harrison had been murdered, and buried in Mr. Hocknell's field at Drayton.  This field was dug on Friday last, but the body was not found; but in consequence of Ellson''s information, Joseph Pugh and Ann Harris were apprehended.

   On Saturday, Pugh confessed to Mr. Bolt, of Drayton (who had him in custody,) and subsequently to Mr. Tremlow, all the circumstances of the murder; and on Sunday morning Pugh was taken to the field where he stated the corpse to have been placed (not in Hocknell's field) he there, in the presence of Mr. Tremlow and many others, pointed a certain place as the spot where the body lay, and on digging there to the depth of about four feet, the toe of a quarter-boot appeared.  Care was taken to dig round the body, the position of which was at length made apparent; and it would seem that the grave had originally been made about five feet deep, but too short, so that the head was pressed forward on the breast.  The body had not been stripped, and though the remains were generally decomposed, the waistcoat, trowsers, and quarter-boots were identified, and left no doubt that the corpse was that of the unfortunate Harrison.

   From the information we have been able to collect, it appears probable that Ann Harris, the mother of Ellson by a former husband, was the instigator to the murder, for the purpose of preventing Harrison giving evidence against her son; she repeatedly asked a man of the name of John Cox to being Harrison to her house, and said that she had brewed some treacle beer, and had put poison into it for him.  Not being able to accomplish this, she agreed to pay Cox and a man of the name of Pugh, £5 to murder him.

    The murder was committed in a lane.  Pugh, it is said, knocked him down, and Cox strangled him, while Robert Cox, a brother, watched.  The body was buried behind a hay stack in Mr. Hucknell's field, near to Drayton; but in consequence of the fear of detection, was afterwards removed to the field where it was found.  In the presence of Ellson, John Cox threatened his (Ellson's) mother, with dreadful imprecations, that if she did not pay him the money she had promised, he would bring Harrison's body and rear it against her door. -Not being able to pay him the money, she gave him an old coat, and obtained in her name from butchers in Drayton, meat, which she also gave to him.

   On Monday an inquest was held, and a verdict of Wilful Murder was brought in against John Cox, aged 66, John Cox, aged 26, Robert Cox, aged 19, and Ann Harris, aged 50. - On Tuesday they were committed to our gaol on the Coroner's inquest, to take their trial at our next assizes.  The five individuals are either connected by birth or marriage.  Pugh's brother was tried at our March assizes, 1827, for a highway robbery, and transported for life. - Shrewsbury Chronicle. [Also The Cambrian, 12 July 1828.]


Carmarthen Journal, 26 September 1828

LAMENTABLE OCCURRENCE. - On Monday evening while the pupils of the Rev. Thos. Rowley, Head Master of the Grammar School at Bridgnorth, were bathing in the Severn near that place, one of them, Master Robt. Harding, aged 17, son of the Rev. J. Harding, of Hopesay, Shropshire, was accidentally drowned. .  .  .  . 


The Cambrian, 18 October 1828

      On Friday last, Mrs. Elizabeth Farr, a resident of the Pound-street, Bridgnorth, was burnt to death.  The deceased was a maiden lady, aged 72 years; she kept no servant, and it is supposed that in going to bed her clothes caught fire.  She was found burnt in a shocking manner.


The Cambrian, 6 December 1828

AWFUL LESSON TO SWEARERS. - Wm. Green, an old pensioner, who was much in the habit of violent swearing, was last week suddenly struck dead in the street, at Bridgnorth.


Carmarthen Journal, 23 January 1829

WAGGONER KILLED. - Monday se'nnight, as Mrs. Gittins, of Netley, near Shrewsbury, was coming with her uncle on horseback towards that town, they perceived a waggon on the road before them, and shortly after heard the waggoner cry out to the horses to stop; on coming nearer, Mrs. G. discovered that the waggoner had fallen under the wheel.   Instantly they dismounted, and proceeded to back the horses, and extricate the unfortunate man.  The wheel had broken his arm, and the horses obeying rhea poor man's call to stop, had let the wheel rest on his head and neck and thereby produced instant death.


Carmarthen Journal, 6 March 1829

MURDER AT BISHOP'S CASTLE. - We stated nearly 3 months ago that a notorious house-breaker, who had received the name of Squire Smallman, but whose real name is John Evans, had been apprehended in Montgomeryshire, & had been taken to Hereford Gaol, from whence he escaped a short time ago, and has since been roaming about the country and living at public-hoses at Churchstoke, Lydbury North, Bishop's Castle, Newton, Knighton, and other places in the vicinity, with his gun and pointers as a gentleman.

   On Friday night last he entered the Boar's Head Inn, Bishop's Castle, and sitting down in the kitchen, called for some ale.  His appearance created suspicion, and he was recognised by the landlord and his family, when, seeing persons whisper, and his guilt making him conscious, he immediately rose and went towards the door; a young man, named Edward Richards, followed him into the yard, and laid hold of the skirts of a blue frock he wore, when the miscreant drew a pistol from under the frock, and shot the poor fellow in the breast, who instantly fell; the ball lodged in the liver. The villain also snapped a pistol at another man, but it did not explode.

   In the confusion, and favoured by the darkness of the night, Evans escaped, and slept in a barn all night; but incredible as it may seem, he returned to the yard about three o'clock on Saturday morning to search for the pistol he had dropped, and which had been previously secured.  He again evaded pursuit, and that very night broke into a house at Churchstoke, where he stole bread & cheese; & it is curious that the constable in search of him with his assistant & a dog, were asleep in the house at the time.  He then broke into Mr. B. Hotchkiss's stable at Churchstoke & stole a gray horse, on which h he rode towards his haunts in Hereford, as he was seen about 5 o'clock on Monday evening, 6 miles from that city, on the Hay-road, and on the circumstance being communicated to J. Tomkins, Esq. of the Wear, he immediately hastened to the Mayor with the intelligence, who promptly ordered the city beadle, and Mr. Whittaker, the city gaoler, in pursuit of Evans, and they proceeded to the Wear, well armed, where, after concerting the plan of operations, they crossed the river to the Lion Inn, at Madley, to remain till the morning.

   About three o'clock on Tuesday Mr. Tomkins  rose, and  went to the ferries over the Wye, where he ascertained  boat had been taken in the night from Byford: he directly hastened to Madley, called up Garstone and Whittaker, and they proceeded by Frettwell, at Poston Lodge, who cheerfully joined them, and the party went out to a house on Vowchurch Common, where a fellow named Wilson resided, and surrounded it, so as to prevent any one scalping.  Whilst the officers were endeavouring to gain admission at the front door, which was locked,  Mr. Frettwell saw Evans at the back bed-room window - he levelled his double-barrelled gun at him, and gave notice that he was in the house, threatening to shoot him if he attempted to escape.  The front door being opened Whittaker proceeded up stairs, opened the bed room door, went into the room, and behind the door found Evans in his shirt, with his waistcoat in his hand, in the act of searching the pocket for a loaded pistol , (similar to that with which he had shot the person at Bishop's Castle).  Mr. Whittaker presented a pistol to his head, and told him if he moved an inch he would be a dead man.

   The party seized and handcuffed him in an instant.  They searched his pockets, and found 17 sovereigns and some silvered, a pistol, and six teaspoons, three marked T. H. and one E. J. another E. and one plain, a silver watch, makers' name Pemberton and Co. Birmingham, No. 56983.   A gun was found in the house loaded with ball, which Mr. Frettwell claimed as his property.  They then lashed Evans and Wilson together, placed then in a cart, and took them to Hereford.   Great merit is due to the exertions of the person s who apprehended this man, and the Magistrates in the locality of Bishop's Castle were also extremely vigilant.

      Evans was formerly a miller.  It appears that on Tuesday night, the 17th inst. he knocked at the door of a woman residing in the parish of Madley, and requested shelter for her at Poston Mill - the woman immediately recognised him, refused admittance, and the next morning apprised a gentleman residing in the parish of the circumstance.  Probably apprehensive that search would be made for him, Evans left the neighbourhood, and returned to Bishop's Castle.  He had been rather populate, as Squire Smallman, in the vicinity, being rather flush with money, after he robbed a person of 500 sovereigns.

   The unfortunate man, Richards, was alive on Wednesday morning, but the ball had not been extracted.  The atrocity of the act caused such consternation in Bishop's Castle, it being a market-day, that the farmers and their wives ordered their horses at the Inns, and  quitted the town .


Carmarthen Journal, 15 January 1830

   The Rev. Mr. Jones, of Habberley, a gentleman well known in Shropshire, met his death in a manner equally sudden and violent on Saturday se'nnight.  Having been to Shrewsbury, and completed his business, at seven o'clock in the evening he left the Fox Inn, on his journey homewards.  About an hour afterwards, a woman passing the gate leading to Severn hill house, discovered a man, lying extended on his back on the ground, his bridle-reins in his hand, and his horse quietly leaning over him.  She gave the alarm, and it was found, on examining the body, that life had been for some time extinct, the pulse having ceased to beat, and the body being cold.  Whether the death of Mr. Jones arose from a fall, from a sudden fit of apoplexy, or otherwise, is uncertain.


Carmarthen Journal, 15 January 1830

FATAL ACCIDENT. - A youth, aged about 15, son of Mr. Lewis Edwards, maltsters, of Oswestry, was accidentally shot in a field, near Shrewsbury, on the [1st.] inst.  The unfortunate youth was drawing the ramrod out of its place, whilst another boy held the gun, the jerking of which caused the piece to go off, when the whole charge entered the body of the poor lad, who survived but a few hours.


The Cambrian, 17 April 1830

FATAL ACCIDENT. - We lament to state, that as Mr. Morris, a traveler for the house of Newman and Co. stationers, Leadenhall-street, London, was returning to Shrewsbury in a gig, from a visit to a friend at Harley, on Sunday night last, the spirited animal that he drove ran the gig up the hedge-bank near Cound, in consequence of which it was upset, and M. Morris being thrown out, fell upon his head, and was killed on the spot.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 16 July 1831

   An accident of the most shocking description occurred near Shrewsbury, on Friday se'nnight.  A young man named Evans, son of Mr. Evans, of Shelton, was assisting to build a hay-stack, and had plunged his pike into a bundle of hay on the cart on which he stood in order to raise it to the stack, when the pike missing its hold, the young man was overbalanced, and falling, the prongs of the pike entered his body near the stomach, tearing the flesh asunder till the bone of his breast sopped it, and wounding him so dreadfully that he died in a few ours.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 5 September 1840

   A distressing occurrence took place at Felton, near Ludlow, on the 25th ult. - Two servants of Mr. Urwick's were employed loading a waggon with grain, when the one in a joke desired the other to get out of his way, giving him a gentle push; unfortunately the poor man fell from the top of the load to the ground in consequence, and was so injured, that he died the next day.

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