Skip to Content

Colonial Cases

1840-1849 Tas

Colonial Times Hobart, 3 March 1840

CORONER'S INQUESTS. - We have received information from the Hollow Tree, to the following effect:-

  A married woman, named Benham, was well and cleaning wheat one evening some days ago; the next day she died.  No medical man was called in, neither was there any inquest held! What is Mr. Glover about? Surely he has somewhat neglected his duty.  The excitement in the neighbourhood is excessive, and well it may be; and we do hope, that an immediate enquiry will be made into this very strange affair.  We learn, from the same source, that there is not a single constable stationed at Hollow Tree.  How is this?

  Some curious facts have reached us, relative to the careless manner in which those who die in the Colonial Hospital are buried.  Not long ago, we are informed, an Inquest was held on the body of a man who had died somewhat suddenly.  On entering the dead-house to view the body, some difficulty was experienced in selecting the right corpse, and one, if not two shells were opened, before the proper subject was recognized.  We shall make every enquiry into this matter, and place all the particulars before the public.


Launceston Advertiser, 5 March 1840

  We learn from a correspondent, that an inquest was held at Longford, on the 29th ultimo, on the body of Mary Masters, wife of John Masters, shoemaker, of that place, and that after a careful investigation of four hours duration, the unanimous verdict was, "That the said Mary Masters died a natural death, accelerated by the grossly unskilled conduct of the Medical Practitioner Mr. Cook, and by the negligence and brutality of her husband.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 7 March 1840

INQUEST.- An Inquest was held at the Black Swan, on Tuesday, 24th February, to  enquire into the sudden death of an old man named Cross, when the following evidence was adduced:-

  William M'Queen examined.  On Monday afternoon, about 4 o'clock, as I was proceeding along  Brisbane-street, my attention was arrested  by seeing the deceased (Robert Cross) lying on the footpath, immediately opposite the house of Mr. Roberts; on looking towards him, he called to, and desired me, to assist him home' I accordingly did so, having first  fetched his landlord, Robert Whittingham, to join me in the task; having seen him dispatched on a bag of shavings, I went away, and have since heard that he is dead.

  The next witness (Robert Whittingham) deposed that he had known the deceased for many years, that latterly he had entirely abandoned himself to the vice of intoxication, , so much so, that for the last month witness does not remember to have once seen him sober! On Monday, about 4 o'clock in the afternoon, a stranger called, and asked witness to accompany him, as "Old Cross" was lying drunk upon the footpath, and begging to be carried home; witness accordingly hastened to the spot, and found the deceased in the situation described.  With much difficulty they succeeded in raising him, but at length having conducted him across some shavings on which he usually slept, and left him to his repose. Deceased did not complain of anything; indeed, he never spoke a word that witness could hear from the time he was lifted off the ground, until he died. Witness watched him some time, having previously remarked that is face was blue, and his hands firmly clenched; finding at length he was every instant getting worse, witness called in a neighbour (Mary Shadwell) to remain with him, while he went for medical assistance.  On application at the Colonial Hospital, he was told that none could be afforded from tat quarter.  Witness then went to the residence of Dr. Pugh, who happened to be from home; ultimately, however, Mr. James Grant, on being acquainted with the circumstances, mounted his horse, and hastened with all speed to the place, whither he had been directed; on his arrival, he at once pronounced the deceased to be dead.

  Dr, James Grant depose that he examined the body of the deceased, and found his death to have been occasioned by asphyxia; a large quantity of mucous had accumulated in the passages of the lungs; the stomach was empty, and presented nothing but the usual appearances resulting from a long course of intemperate habits; the deceased must have laboured for some time past  under a chronical complaint.

  The Jury did not think it necessary to call for any additional evidence, but unanimously consented to return a verdict of Died by the visitation of God.

  In the course of the proceedings, one of the jurymen (Mr. Charles Cliffin) said that he had known the deceased  at least eighteen years, and that during the whole of that time he had never slept on any other bed than such as was compose of wood shavings; he was about 70- years of age.


Hobart Town Courier, 29 March 1840

Fatal Accident. - An inquest was held at Mr. Cooley's, the "Horse and Jockey," New-town-road, on Thursday, the 19th March, on the body of a youth named Daniel Marney, the son of Mr. Marney, the shoemaker, in Brisbane-street.  It appeared in evidence, that Mr. Lord's overseer gave the boy the horse to mind.  The lad mounted the animal, and was riding about, when the horse suddenly shying threw him off, and his feet becoming entangled in the stirrup leathers, he was dragged a considerable distance, and at some speed, before the animal could be stopped.  When this was at last effected, the poor boy was found to be a mutilated mass of bruises, and the countenance so shockingly mangled, that it was difficult to identify him.  The jury retur4ned a verdict of accidentally killed.

Accident. - The present week has been rife with fatal accidents.  Yesterday a lad named Thomas Williams, an apprentice in the ship Ann, was sent in the jolly-boat to fetch a cask of water.  From some cause in going - it is supposed while sculling the boat - he fell over into the water, and being unable to swim, sunk in a few minutes, before the boats of the West Indian, Mayflower, and Mandane, all of which promptly put off, could reach the spot.  Two boats from the Ann dragged for the body yesterday afternoon, but without success.  This morning a gun was fired from the West Indian, hoping by the concussion to raise the body, but up to the period of our going to press it had not been found.

Death by Drowning.

  Our obituary of this week contains the melancholy notification of the accidental death of Mr. R. Mitchell, for many years known in this town as chief and confidential clerk to Mr. T. Y. Lowes, and highly esteemed and respected by al his numerous friends.  From all that can be collected of this sad and fatal accident, it appears that Mr. Mitchell had been spending the evening on Tuesday last with Captain Addison, on board of the Eudora, recently arrived from Calcutta.  About 210 o'clock Captain Addison accompanied Mr. Mitchell on shore, where he parted with him, and it is supposed that the unfortunate gentleman having discovered that he had taken a wrong  hat was returning to the vessel, and that mistaking the chains of the West Indian for the stage of the Calcutta, he fell into the water and thus met with an untimely death.  A coroner's inquest was held in the following Wednesday morning before H. Stewart, Esq., at the "Whaler's Return," on the New Wharf, when the jury, after a patient investigation, returned a verdict of found drowned.

  The body was discovered early on Wednesday morning floating under the stern of the Eudora, with the face downwards, by the milkman who was going round to supply the shipping in the harbour, and who immediately gave information to the Captain on board.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 21 March 1840

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Tuesday last before the Coroner, P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., on the body of Joseph Gray, who died suddenly the night before.  Upon investigation  it appeared that his death was owing to much the same causes as those recorded in this journal a short time ago in the inquest upon "Old Cross" - a habit of excessive drinking having in both cases occasioned a general decay of nature, terminating at length in death.  The Jury returned a verdict of - Died by the visitation of God.


The Colonial Times Hobart, 24 March 1840

CORONER'S INQUEST. - We forgot last week to notice, that an Inquest was held upon the body of a female child, the daughter of a Margaret Watts in Davey-street, last Wednesday week.  The mother gave evidence, that the child had, in the morning, drank rum out of a bottle placed at the head of the bed, containing that precious beverage.  Notwithstanding the child as in great agony, and died in a fit at 4 o'clock in the afternoon, she had taken no steps top procure medical aid for her.  Verdict - Died in a fit of apoplexy, occasioned by drinking rum.  What other result could be expected from such a mother, whose conduct is a disgrace to humanity?


Launceston Advertiser, 26 March 12840

AN INQUEST was held, dying the week, upon the body of a child, which has caused considerable excrement, especially among the faculty.  The evidence and circumstances connected with this case, are so protracted, that we cannot find space, this week, for their insertion.  As it is expected that further enquiry will be found necessary, before the matter can be finally set at rest, we decline entering further upon the subject, at present.


  On Monday, a young man belonging to the Pyramus was observed sitting in a boat alongside of the vessel, when he suddenly disappeared, and his cap was seen floating on the water.  There were no drags to be had, and consequently no assistance could be rendered, to save life or recover the body.  It is stated that the unfortunate individual was a little intoxicated at the time the accident happened.  We have not heard that the body has been found.


Hobart Town Courier, 27 March 1840

INQUEST. - On Friday the 20th instant, the Coroner, R. Stewart, Esq., and a respectable jury, assembled at the house of Mr. J. C. Tolman, Union Hotel, in Campbell-street, to inquire into the death of an old man, 77 years of age, named John Dunkley, who, it appeared, had been a cripple upwards of 126 years, and who had totally lost the use of his left side.  The unfortunate man was in the habit of placing a lighted candle by the bed side, of course within reach, so that he might extinguish it, when in bed.  On Monday night, after retiring to rest, while endeavoring to put out the candle, the sleeve of his short caught fire, and burnt the whole of his right side so severely that death ensued on Wednesday night last after considerable suffering.

  Another inquest was held on Wednesday, the 26th instant, at Mr. C. Taylor's, the Rising |Sun, to inquire into the death of William Buttress, aged 37.  From the evidence, it appeared that the deceased was taking a walk, accompanied by a female with whom he had formerly cohabited, when he was seized with a cold shivering in Elizabeth-street; he returned to his lodgings at Mr. Nicholl's, the Verandah Wine vaults, and laid down in the stable, from which time he never spoke after, and died about half-past three the following morning.  Verdict - Apoplexy.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 28 March 1840


Examination of Mary Stratton, mother of Thomas    

  Stratton. - I am the mother of the child called Thomas Stratton, who died on Saturday night last.

  By the Coroner. - Please tell the gentlemen of the jury the whole circumstances connected with the illness and death of your child.

  Mary Stratton. - My dear child was taken ill three days before I came into town with shortness of breath, violent coughing, and relaxation of the bowels' the child was somewhat better on the third day, when my husband and myself resolved to take him into Launceston for advice; we arrived about 11 o'clock A.M. on Friday, in Launceston, and went to the nearest Doctor to the place we lived; we stopt at Mrs. Clarke's; this is the gentleman, (pointing to Dr.  Howe,) I went to with the infant to Dr. Howe examined the child and wrote a prescription and directed me to go to a chemist to have it made up; it was a powder witch the Doctor directed me to give to the child at once, but the Doctor told me to tell the chemist to make up two of the powders in case I should spill some or lose one; I gave the powder to the child in the evening, and the child after having taken the powder seemed to become worse; I sent for Mr. Grant; the child was very ill; I had it on my lap when Mr. Grant came; I thought the child was lying.

  By the Coroner. - Had you anybody with you when you fetched the powders?

  Mary Stratton. - My husband and another man.

  By the Coroner. - Did you carry the powders or was it your husband?

  Mary Stratton. - My husband to the best of my recollection put them in his pocket.

  By the Coroner. - Is your husband here?

  Mary Stratton. - He is outside.

  By the Coroner. - Let Mr. Stratton be called - you are the father of the infant who died.

  Mr. Stratton. - I am.

  By the Coroner. - Were you with your wife in Mr. Robert's shop to have some powders made from a prescription you received from Dr. Howe?

  Mr. Stratton. - I was.

  By the Coroner. - What did you do with the powders when Mr. Roberts gave them to you?

  Mr. Stratton. - I put them in my pocket.

  By the Coroner. - Did you pen the powders before you reached home?

  Mr. Stratton. - I have not opened the powders since I received tem from Mr. Roberts, it was in the same state when I came home; I gave the powders top my wife in the same state as Mr. Roberts handed them over to me.

  Mr. Roberts sworn.

  By the Coroner. - You are a chemist and keep a shop in Charles-street.

  Mr. Roberts. - I am.

  By the Coroner. - Do you know Dr. W. D. Howe and his hand-writing?

  Mr. Roberts.- I know r. Howe; I have not seen him w rite, but I have received many prescriptions from him, which I believe were his hand-writing; the one which I received on Friday last for Thomas Stratton was signed with his initials and which Dr. Howe says was written by him.

  By the Coroner. - Did you make up any powders for Thomas Stratton?

  Mr. Roberts. - I did, according to the prescription which was brought to me by Mary Stratton and two men; the prescription was for one powder only.

  By the Coroner. - Did Mary Stratton say any thing about the powders?

  Mr. Roberts. = She asked me whether it was necessary to have two powders; I told her the Doctor was the best judge of that, one powder only was ordered; she told me she lived in the country and the Doctor had told them she had better have two powders made up, in case she might lose one or spill it; I weighed another powder according to the same prescription; Mary Stratton took it and handed it over to her husband.

  By the Coroner. - Is this the prescription?

  Mr. Roberts. - It is the same.

  By the Coroner. - Do you keep all prescriptions brought to your shop?

  Mr. Roberts. - I do, unless the patient particularly requests to have them returned.

  By the Coroner. - Is there any thing particular about the prescription?

  Mr. Roberts. - There is an error in the first line of the prescription, the component parts are quicksilver and chalk (and Dover's powders) called by the Pharmacopeia,  hydrargyrum cum creta, whereas the prescription stated hydrag:sabm: cum creta.

  By the Coroner. - What did you do with the prescription?

  Mr. Roberts. - On Saturday evening, Mr. Grant called and required me to show him the prescription which I had prepared the pervious evening for a child, and produced at the same time a powder which I at once recognized as one of the powders made up for Thomas Stratton; prior to the showing the prescription, I informed Mr. Grant of the component parts of tee powders; Mr. Grant then said, he thought there was opium in it by the smell, each powder contains half a grain of opium.

  Mr. GRANT sworn. - On Friday night at 11 o'clock I was called by some parents to see a child at Mrs. Clarke's; he was in a dying state, lying on his mother's knee, in a state of stupor, face pallid, the eye or the pupils contracted, he could scarcely breathe, with rattling in his throat; I gave the child a stimulant, a little rum with water, there being no brandy at hand, and ordered a large fire, he could scarcely swallow; I dropped with the handle of a spoon a little on his tongue, respiration became suspended for nearly half a minute; I sprinkled some rum on his face and the nostrils, and blew upon them to make the child sigh or respire; I applied mustard upon the chest and hot bricks to the feet; I had the blankets changed and a large fire kept up; the infant rallied somewhat, and afterwards the body became warm, I directed Mrs. Stratton give it a little rum from the end of a ea soon, and use all means I had used;  during this time I made inquiry what had been the matter with the child; Mrs. Stratton then told me the infant had been ill several days before she came into town, it had a severe cough and relaxation in the bowels; she was very much alarmed about it and took the child into Launceston; on Friday she had the advice of Dr. Howe, who gave her a prescription for a powder made up at Mr. Roberts's the chemist; she had two powders made up from the same prescription, the one which she had not given to the infant, she showed to me, which I took with me; I thought the powder smelled of opium, and conclude it was Dover's and hydrarg cum creta; I suspected the chemist had made a mistake and enquired what had become of the prescription, she told me the chemist had kept it; I left the child in a hopeless state at one o'clock in the morning; I had to go out of town before day-light; on Saturday evening I called on Mr. Roberts, who showed the prescription to me dated 20th March, 1840, and with the initials W. D. H.; my impression was that the child had received a poisonous dose of opium; I went to the house of Mrs. Stratton, and directed her not to bury the infant  until she heard from me; I considered it my duty to inform he Coroner of the circumstance; Mrs. Stratton told me the child was 15 days old; I am of opinion that the dose of opium given to the child was highly improper, and sufficient to poison it.  

  By Dr. Howe. - Were you acquainted when you first aw the child with the medicine I had prescribed for the child?

  Mr. Grant. - No, I found it nearly dead.

  By Dr. Howe. Can you swear hat the same cause did not exist, for which I had given the medicine when you first saw the infant?

  Mr. Grant. - I consider the child's death was hastened by the opium.

  Dr. Howe. - Was it an over dose?

  Mr. Grant. - It was.

  Dr. Howe. - What do you find to be the dose of Dover's powders, according to the London Pharmacopoeia?

  Mr. Grant. - I know it states 6 grains is the minimum, and 40 grains the maximum, but that is mixed for adult age.

  Dr. Howe. - What is the least dose you consider ought to be given to anybody?

  Mr. Grant. - I consider the dose of 1 grain is quite enough for the age of an infant of 15 days.

  Dr. Howe. - Then you say that the quantity of opium in the powder given to the infant was pernicious?

  Mr. Grant. - I do.

  Dr. Howe. - What effect does opium produce on the system?

  Mr. Grant. - (Waiting five minutes, and then saying_ some persons say -

  Dr. Howe, - (Interrupting Mr. Grant) let us have none of your humming; I want to know and to ascertain what you know about it, and not what others think/

  The Coroner. - Gentlemen, I shall not tolerate such language; it is not becoming to use such phrases.

  Dr. Howe. - Sir, I have not come here to be humbugged by that fellow.  What effect does opium produce on the system?

  Mr. Grant. - Lethargy, suspending the functions, and stopping the circulation.

  Dr. Howe. - By what particular process is the circulation interrupted, after the taking of an over dose of opium?

  Mr. Grant. - After having taken it is the stomach, some eminent medical men think it acts by the process of absorption, and is carried into the circulation; others maintain it acts on the nervous system, direct from the stomach.

  Dr. Howe. - Does not opium act as a stimulant, and does it not lose its narcotic effect in the gastric process?

  Mr. Grant. - In such a dose, the narcotic effect produces very often death; for there are many cases on record in which a few drops of laudanum proved fatal given to infants in diarrhea.

  Dr. Howe. - You have stated that opium acts as a stimulant, and yet you administered rum, another stimulant, I dare say to check the stimulating effect of the opium; you are a strange practitioner.

  Mr. Grant. - When I first saw the child, there was no time for enquiry; I was obliged to act as I have done, the infant was dying.

  (Dr. Howe here said something which was not understood.)

  By the Coroner. - Do any of the gentlemen of the Jury wish to ask Mr. Grant any questions?

  Jurors. - No.

  By the Coroner. - Gentlemen of the Jury, you have heard for the present all the evidence in this case, do you require the body to be opened?

  Foreman. - We wish the body to be opened in the presence of all the medical gentlemen here assembled.

  Dr. Howe. - I request that Dr. De Dassel, Mr. Pugh, and Mr. Kilmore will open the body.

  Dr. De Dassel. - I beg Dr. Howe and Mr. Grant to be present.

  The inquest then adjourned for an hour.

  Mr. Coroner. - Are all the gentlemen present to resume the Inquest?  Constable, call Mr. Kilmore.

  Mr. Kilmore, after a long examination on the post mortem appearance, Mr. Pugh was called.

  Mr. Pugh, surgeon, after a long examination for the same purpose, Dr. De Dassel was called,

  By the Coroner. - Did you assist in the dissection and post mortem examination of Thomas Stratton?

  Dr. De Dassel. - I did.

  By the Coroner. - Will you be kind enough to state to the Jury the particulars?

  Dr. De Dassel. - The stomach proved in several places  slightly irritated, the duodenum from the pylorus strongly congested, and a slight irritation visible throughout the whole intestinal channel, likely the result of diarrhea, as mentioned by the mother of the infant in the early stages of the illness of the baby.

  By the Coroner. - Did you discover any thing particular about the lungs?

  Dr. De Dassel. The appearance of the lungs left no doubt that the infant must have suffered of bronchitis, hence the difficulty of breathing and the violent cough as stated by the mother.

  By the Coroner. - What is the dose of Dover's powder you would give to a child of 15 days old?

  Dr. De Dassel. - I have been nearly 20 years in practice in London and here, but I do not recollect that ever I have exceeded more than one, or at the utmost two grains, for that age.

  By the Coroner. - Do you think hat four gains would poison an infant of 15 days old?

  Dr. De Dassel. It might be the case, because we have it on record, stated by the most eminent medical authorities of Europe, that four drops of laudanum are said to have occasioned death at or about that age, but in this case I would by no means swear to it, in particular since the post mortem examination has not even furnished us with the least result to that effect.

  By a Juror. - Did you. Dr. De Dassel, smell any opium in the stomach?

  Dr. De Dassel., - The contents of the stomach smelled of rum.

  By the Coroner. - Do you consider four rains of Dover's powder an unusual o a strange dose?

  Dr. De Dassel. - I consider it a strong dose for that age.

  By the Foreman. - Is frothing ay the mouth a symptom or the effect of opium taken in as over dose?

  Dr. De Dassel. - Not at all times, convulsions or water on the head, (as it is commonly called) produce this symptom generally in the infant age.

  By the Coroner. - Please Dr. De Dassel read this prescription to the Jury, and state whether there is any thing particular about it.

  Dr. de Dassel. - There is a slight error in the first remedy, which is according to the London Pharmacopoeia called hydrarguim cum creta, in this prescription, that same (remedy or medicine) is called by Dr. Howe hydrarg:sub:creta; it is a mere error in the name, and does not affect the quantity of quality of the medicine, since the chemist took that which Dr, Howe meant, namely, hydrargjumn et creta.

  By the Coroner. - Do any of the gentlemen of the Jury wish to ask Dr. de Dassel any more questions?

  By the Foreman. - We are perfectly satisfied with the minute and able explanation Dr. de Dassel has afforded us.

  By the Coroner. - Gentlemen of the Jury, you have now heard all the evidence in this case; if you come to a decision according to the evidence of Mr. Grant, you must find a verdict of manslaughter; on the other hand you have the evidence of three other medical gentlemen, some of whom are able to swear that the death of the infant was occasioned by the medicine given. The material points of the evidence of the last three medical gentlemen, that is to say, Mr. Kilmore, Mr. Pugh, and Dr. De Dassel, do not vary, all agreeing that the post mortem examination  did not furnish any proof to establish that act.

  The Coroner retired for a few minutes, whilst the Jury considered their verdict.

  By the Forman. - Verdict, died by the visitation of God.  The Jury wish to express that the prescription was negligently given by Dr. Howe.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 27 March 1840

INQUEST. - our readers will find a very detailed account of an inquest held during the week upon the body o an infant named Stratton, which terminated in a verdict of Died by the visitation of God, accompanied by a slight censure on the negligence of Doctor Howe.  A very full attendance of the medical profession took place on his occasion, and the Coroner, P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., displayed his usual patience in investigation the merits of the case.#

  "Who shall decide when Doctors disagree?"

  We confess our inability to do so, and must therefore leave our readers to form their own opinion upon the subject.


The Launceston Advertiser, 2 April 1840

  We observe by advertisement that Dr. Howe has announced his intention of laying before the public, the whole particulars connected with the recent inquest on the body of the infant James Stratton. .  .  .  


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 3 April 1840   We learn that an inquest was held at Illawarra, Norfolk Plains, on the 24th March, on the body of Dennis Manning, a child of three years o age, and the verdict was , that the death of the deceased was accidental; but occasioned by burning; and that Mr. Cook, apothecary Longford, showed great neglect in not sending Dr. Wilmore to Mr. Mannings's, as he promised to do.  It appears that a log was burning a few yards from the house, and the poor little child playing about, when is clothes caught fire, and in the course of two or three minutes, at the utmost, it was so severely injured that it died the next day.  Surely this ought to be a caution to our settlers who are so careless in leaving fires burning about their premises.  The unfortunate mother went in a state of distraction to Mr. Cook, who gave her some lotion, and promised o send Dr. Wilmore to her; she [depended] on his promise and returned home.  Cook took no further trouble in the business, and the next day the poor child died as the mother was bringing it to the Plains for medical aid. - Correspondent.


INQUEST.  On Tuesday last, a Coroner's Jury was summoned at the Ship Inn, to enquire into the death of William Keane. The third mate of the barque Pyramus, who was drowned about eight days previous, when attempting to get into his ship's boat from alongside the Sovereign, lying at the Queen's Wharf.  The verdict of the Jury was found drowned.


Launceston Advertiser, 2 April 1840

ACCIDENT. - We have this week another name t add to the long list of those whom intemperance has hurried into eternity.  On Tuesday evening an elderly man named Patrick Mangan, whilst proceeding out of town about 5 o'clock met with is death by the upsetting of the cart in which he was riding.  The body was found upon the road about 4 miles out of town, and conveyed to the Colonial Hospital.  An inquest was held on Wednesday, at the Scottish Chiefs, and a verdict of Accidental Death, was returned.


The Hobart Town Courier, 10 April 1840


  On Friday, the 3rd April, an inquest was held on Mary Patterson, who died on the day previous, about one o'clock.  The inquest assembled at Mr. Champion's, the Jolly Hatters, in Melville0street.  Verdict - Died by the visitation of God.

  On Saturday, 4th, an inquest was Held on the body of Thomas Bendale Pick, who died in the Colonial Hospital  Friday. Verdict - Visitation of God. This man had had the prevailing fever and was attacked with diarrhea.

  On Monday, 6th, the Coroner and a very expectable jury assembled at the house of Mr. Tolman, the Union Hotel, in Campbell-street, to inquire into the circumstances touching the death of a prisoner of the crown named Joseph Gilpin.  The jury returned a verdict, that he died by the visitation of God.  Dr. Hobson gave it as his opinion that the beds in the Penitentiary were much too crowded, a cause which would doubtless assist in the generation of putrid fevers and other malignant diseases.  The jury requested that the Lieutenant-Governor might be informed of this circumstance.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 11 April 1840


  On Tuesday last an inquest was held at the Scottish Chiefs, before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., on the body of Patrick Maughan, who was killed in falling from a bullock cart the previous evening, when the following evidence was adduced:-

  William Birch examined. - I am a shoemaker and reside in Launceston; I know the deceased Patrick Maughan; he was a commuted pensioner, and resided at Mr. Gee's, at Tallisker; yesterday, about half past 2 o'clock, .Mr. Maughan left my house with the intention, as he then stated, of going home, and appeared in good spirits; that was the last time I saw him alive.

  Archibald Duncan sworn. - is an assigned servant to Mr. M'Lean, and resides at the White Hills; came to town yesterday with a load of wheat upon a dray drawn by six bullocks; a man named John  Smith accompanied deponent with a load of the same description; after delivering the wheat, Smith and the witness called at the public house of Mr. Monaghan, and had something to drink; this was about half-past two o'clock in the afternoon; whilst there the deceased called to deponent from the opposite side of the road, and upon going to him, he asked of deponent would give him a ride; being answered in the affirmative he said her would stand something to drink, and accordingly called for a pot of beer, of which Smith and deponent partook.  The deceased then got into the cart which Smith drove, and proceeded on the way home; about the middle of the  Sand Hill was overtaken by a woman whom witness has seen below, named Jane Mitchell' she spoke to the deceased, and said she was going the same road, and should be lad of a lift; she accordingly got up; the deceased and she had been fellow servants; witness continued on the Perth road until the two drays arrived at the place where it turns off to Patterson's Plains; witness was driving his bullocks about twenty yards in advance of Smith, when the latter called upon him to stop; this was upon the descent of a place called  Booth's Hill; witness then saw that Smith's dray had been capsized over the roots of a tree which lay across the road, and deceased was lying on his back a short distance off, he was quite dead; witness did not  see any wound upon him, nor was there any blood about his person; whilst debating what was proper to be done, a young man came up on horseback,  and finding what had happened, by our desire searched the deceased, and having ascertained what he had upon him, rode away for the purpose of reporting the circumstance to Launceston, first directing Smith to being the body in; deponent  then went home with his dray.

  Jane Mitchell was then called, but appeared so much intoxicated, that the Coroner objected taking her evidence, and ordered her into confinement.

  The evidence of Smith went to corroborate what had previously been adduced, and he added, that at the time when the accident occurred, he was endeavouring to "get off" his bullocks, which they obeying with some reluctance, occasioned the wheel to come in contact with a fallen tree and overturned the dray, that Jane Mitchell complained of having hurt her arm in consequence of the fall, and that, witness subsequently, by Mr. Best's direction, drove the deceased into Launceston.

  Mr. Best's evidence was then taken, and strictly corroborated that of the former witnesses, the Coroner remarking that much praise was due to him for the promptitude he had displayed on the occasion.

  Dr. M'Gurdy stated that he had examined the person of the deceased, and had ascertained his death to have ensued in consequence of right broken ribs, the fractured portions of which had penetrated the lungs, and must have occasioned instant death; the mere concussion in falling from the dray could not have occasioned such injuries, the deceased must have come in contact with the dray.  The two witnesses, Smith and Duncan, however, both swore that they did not see the dray touch him, and the Foreman of the Jury, Mr. Faro, ascertained by a question put to the latter, that Smith was not riding upon his dray when the accident happened.  Mr. Best also remarked that in his opinion a careful sober drover would experience difficulty in passing such a road, to keep clear of accident.  The Coroner then said he should take care to make a representation in the proper quarter respecting the state of the road, and if the Jury wished to call the evidence of Jane Mitchell he would adjourn the Inquest until she was in a fit state to be examined, and if they thought that the life of Maughan had been sacrificed by the negligence or drunkenness of Smith, then they must record a verdict of manslaughter against him.

  The Jury unanimously returned a verdict of Accidental death.


The Hobart Town Courier, 17 April 1840

INQUEST. - On Wednesday, the Coroner held an inquest at Brown's River, on the body of a child named Henry West, aged 17 months, who died from a very severe burning which it accidentally sustained on Monday last. - Verdict, accidentally burned.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 18 April 1840

  We are informed that Dr. Howe has changed his plan with his intended publication. .  .  .  

  We are requested to state that the death of Mr. Matthews, the Coach Builder, of Brisbane-street, was not of Delirium Tremens, as sated in the Launceston Advertiser of Thursday last, but from natural causes, and we are requested by a relative of the deceased, .  .  .  


Hobart Town Courier, 24 April 1840

INQUEST. - A coroner's inquest was held on Wednesday forenoon, at the Whaler's Return, New Wharf, on the body of James Anderson, who died under the following circumstances.  It came out in evidence before the crooner, that a man named Benjamin Stevens and the deceased had had some words respecting a report which had been spread by Anderson, concerning Stevens and a girl of the name of Williams. Upon Stevens accusing Anderson of being the author of the report, the latter denied it, and made use of an epithet towards Stevens, who in a fit of anger kicked Anderson, who expired in a few minutes after.  Dr. Bedford held a post mortem examination upon the body of the deceased, and gave it as his opinion that deceased (Anderson) had died from the effect of the injury sustained.  The jury after a careful consideration of the circumstances found a verdict accordingly, and Benjamin Stevens was fully committed under the coroner's warrant to take his trial for manslaughter.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 25 April 1840

 On the occasion of the inquest to enquire into the circumstances of the death of Mrs. Lilley, when far advanced in pregnancy, which was occasioned by the careless driving of wild bullocks through the streets, the Jury strongly urged some legal enactment to prevent similar casualties.  To this day we have not heard that the recommendation of the Jury has been heeded by the authorities, and not a day elapses without proving the necessity of some legal control over the brutal fellows, who, as it really seems, and only endanger the lives of the public by driving cattle furiously through the streets.

  A week or two back we noticed an nuance of the most shameful nature in which two mad bullocks - mad by the most brutal treatment - cleared the streets before them, followed by two fellows galloping after them in the most careless manner on and off the foot paths; and one of them had the audacity to attempt a blow with his whip at a young child, who, to escape the fury of the bullocks, ran near to his horse.  The force with which the blow was attempted, had the whip fallen upon the child, most likely would have killed it.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 2 May 1840

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the Britannia public house in Wellington street, on Monday last, before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., on view of the body of Thomas Dunn, aged 15 years, a prisoner of the Crown, who died in the Hospital the previous day, of Tetanus.  The deceased when in assigned service was seriously burnt, in consequence of a lighted candle having communicated to his clothes and the bed furniture on which he had fallen asleep when reading a book.  Verdict - Accidental Death.


The Hobart Town Courier, 22 May 1740

SUICIDE. - A fatal and most determined case of suicide occurred on Monday afternoon at the Powder magazine, where a private on duty, named Peter Leech, of thee 1st regiment, deliberately and literally, blew out his brains, by placing the muzzle of his musket in his mouth, and, with the aid of a piece of tape attached to the trigger, discharged the gun with his foot, taking the fearful precaution of first pulling off his boot, in order, no doubt, that it might not slip while in the act of pulling the trigger.  We understand that previously to his quitting Dublin, Leech had married against the consent of his colonel, and was not able to bring his wife with him.  She subsequently followed him out;  but so little in the geographical situation of Van Diemen's Land and Sydney understood by the  public "at home" even to this day, that she went to Sydney, and thus after a short time, not finding her husband, cohabited with another man there.  Leech, hearing of this, made application to be permitted to go to Sydney, which of course could not be granted; and this preying upon the unfortunate man's mind led to the commission of the fatal act.  On the morning that he pit an end to is life he wrote to one of his comrades, named Fenton, as follows:-

Dear Fenton - I am on guard - shall be some time - take great care of my dog. - Yours, P.L.

An inquest was held on Tuesday last, and a verdict returned of temporary insanity.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 2 June 1840

CRONER'S INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the house of Mr. Philips, cabinet-maker, on Saturday, May 2, on the body of a man named Adam Smith.  It appeared by the evidence of a Mr. Wyse, that the deceased was in a very precarious state when he left Hobart own, and was labouring under disease of the lungs.  He died on Friday morning, as the vessel was entering the harbour. Verdict - Natural Causes.  [Editor's Note.]


Colonial Times (Hobart), 9 June 1840


We copy, from the last number of the Tasmanian, the following article, relative to a Coroner's Inquest, upon a man, who died there suddenly in the Prisoners' Barracks.  The account is, substantially, correct; but we happen yet know, that the unfortunate deceased died of a malady, whose suddenly-fatal termination could not have been easily foretold.  To the Principal Superintendent, Mr. W. Gunn, every praise is due for the promptitude and humanity, which he displayed, on this occasion; they add another honourable testimonial to the great interest and concern, which he evinces for the welfare and comfort of the unfortunate beings, placed under his charge.  As regards the complaints, made by our respected Contemporary, concerning the want of accommodation in the Prisoners' Barracks, this cannot be charged against Mr. Gunn - as he has used every exertion to provide every comfort and convenience compatible with the condition of the inmates.  The several new buildings, recently erected, will show, at once, that no disregard to his important charge, has been manifested by Mr. Gunn:-

  The inquest. - We have already alluded to an inquest which had been held at the Union Tavern, Campbell-street, on the body of a man who had died, during the previous night, in the Prisoners; Barracks.  We then stated, that a portion of the evidence was so startling, so appalling, that we could not trust ourselves to make any observations upon it, until after we had seen the room in which the man died.  On Wednesday last, by the Principal Superintendent's permission, (who we find at all times ready to inform and oblige) we visited the Prisoners' Barracks.  The result is exactly what we before stated, that the manner in which the sick are treated in the hospital, the gaols, and road-huts of this Colony, is by far worse than can be described, without exciting a feeling anything but desirable in a community so constituted. Let the facts speak for themselves. -

  The room in which the man, on whom the Inquest Jury sat, died, is eighteen feet by fourteen.  In it, when he died, were fourteen sick men, besides the wards-man.  They were locked in with their night tubs.  The room is in height about eleven feet.  There are two rows of standing bed places, one over the other, consequently, there is a breathing, and sitting up space, of about four feet.  This, it will be seen, is about the height between decks, of a slaver.  There are two windows in the rom, side by side, consequently no ventilation, unless a small grated hole of about 12 inches square near the roof, may be considered so.  The sick undress, but there is no separation in the bed places.  There is an order od decency observed in the other wards, but not in the one appropriated to the sick.

  In this room then, of 18 feet by 14, were stowed 14 or 15 human beings, their medicines, and all their impurities, when this man died.  When the Assistant Surgeon, Mr. Reid, was asked, "if he thought the room inconveniently crowded?" he replied, "that he did not."  In a room similar to the live stowage deck of a slaver, and with but little more ventilation, it would seem that, in his opinion, no inconvenience was sustained.  Perhaps, however, he meant no inconvenience to himself, and the day wardsman; he surely could not have intended to say, that the sufferers themselves were properly stowed, for that is the only term we can apply to such an order of things.  

  It also came out in evidence, that the man had been removed from the hospital before he was convalescent, because the hospital was too crowded.  He was therefore removed merely as a matter of convenience.  This is a very economical way of stowing the sick, certainly, sending a man still dangerously ill, amongst a body of 700, but especially into the convalescent ward of the Prisoners' Barracks.  We should have thought that instead of this, another temporary hospital would have been taken, at any rent.  But here comes in again, the pounds, shillings, and pence calculations, even in cases of life and death.

  Again - there is no surgeon resident inside the hospital walls, neither is there any regulation as to his residing in the immediate vicinity.  On the night in question, the person in charge of the man when he died, did not even know where the Surgeon lived.  This was stated in evidence, we are not distorting the facts; we challenge contradiction.  

  The verdict found, was of course the usual absurd one, Died by the visitation of Gd.  What it should have been, must be obvious to every man's mind.  The deceased ought not to have been in the convalescent ward of the Prisoners' Barracks - he ought to have been treated, although a convict, like a human being, not sowed away with fourteen others, in a room 18 feet by 14, with a breathing space only one foot higher than the live stowage deck of a slaver. Reader ! reflect upon the chance such an unfortunate being could have had of his existence.  It will be a leaf out of the book of convict life, to read at home.

  His Excellency, we hear, (we do not presume to say, in consequence of our notice of this Inquest last week) visited the Penitentiary on Tuesday last, and ordered, or recommended, the removal of the upper tier of bed places.  But why have they been suffered to be there an hour, and why are they not removed, before other lives are sacrificed?  Here we suppose comes in again, the pounds, shillings, and pence system, and the Home orders of economy.  We have only further to add, that in our opinion, this man's life was sacrificed, as many others have been also, during the late fever.  We will now pass on to the Wards.

  Those we saw hold forty men each, and these have no ventilation, excepting two windows in each room, standing side by side.  These windows are iron barred, with inside shutters.  The latter are shut, or not, as the men please, the lesser number of voters being merged in the larger, and more powerful, of course.  A great number more than forty have been in each of these rooms.  The sleeping places have a parting board between each man, an order of decency which ought to be observed generally.  The rooms are very clean, and there is a great appearance of regularity, and neatness, very creditable in the officers of the Establishment.  

  The Mess-room, however, is an exception to this.  Although there may be 700 men in Barracks, there is only room to mess half the number.  The rest may sit about on the stones outside, not like human beings sent here for reform, as well as punishment, but like animals, without either hearts to feel, or minds to think - who have forfeited all right to the commonest decencies of human nature. We think the floor, and tables of the Mess-room, even of prisoners, ought to be kept as clean as possible; it is necessary that it should be so, both for their health, and in order to hold each man up to something decent in the scale of humanity

  We once more earnestly solicit the attention of the Authorities to the general state of the Gaols and Hospitals throughout the colony.  They are at present a disgrace to the British name.  A new Inspector of Hospitals has arrived, let him exert himself, and immediately forward an honest report of what is opinion is on the mater.  But, beyond his opinion, or that of any medical man, whose sense of smell and sight might have been destroyed by scenes of personal suffering, we hope to see others taking a lead in the mater, and particularly for the sake of the character for humanity of His Excellency the Lieutenant Governor, from whom every man, whether free or bond, has a right to expect something like consideration - and especially in cases such as those which are again, through the medium of this Journal, respectfully submitted to his notice.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 20 June 1840

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Monday last., at the Female Factory, before Peter Archer Mulgrave, Esq., Coroner, on view of the body of an infant, named Williams, who died suddenly in that establishment.  The evidence adduced was satisfactory, that the death of the child was natural, a verdict to that effect was returned.


The Hobart Town Courier, 3 July 1840

CORONER'S INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Thursday week, at the house of Mr. Cleary, the Sir Thomas Brisbane, in Veteran's Row, Hobart Town, on the body of a man named James Wakes, who died under the following circumstances:-

  It appears the deceased had for the last two years been permitted by the kind sufferance of the principal superintendent to sleep in the prisoners' barracks, although he was free by servitude; but having been guilty of some misconduct, such favour was withdrawn a few days back.  The deceased had repaired to the lime-kilns of Mr. Allen, Veteran's Row, for the purpose of sleeping, and sitting down at the top of the kiln, (where the Port Arthur coal is used, ) he became stupefied by the gas arising there from, which caused suffocation.  The verdict wads to that effect.

  We stop the Press to announce the melancholy death of Mr. COLLICOTT, our much respected fellow-colonist, who was this evening thrown from his horse and killed on the spot.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 18 July 1840

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the Scottish Chiefs on Tuesday last, on the body of Bridget Langham, who died in the hospital on the day previous.  The deceased died from injuries received from having been pushed upon the fire by William Keating, on the 24th of last month.  A verdict of manslaughter was returned against Keating, who was committed to gaol for trial on the coroner's warrant.

INQUEST. - An inquest was held this day at the Court House, before Peter Archer Mulgrave, Esq., on the body of Eliza Morris, a prisoner of the Crown, who died in the Female House of Correction yesterday morning.  The jury, after a patient investigation of the facts adduced in evidence, returned a verdict of Died by the visitation of God.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 25 July 1840


  Feb. 13, at Norfolk islands, drowned by the upsetting of a boat, the Hon. John Charles Best, Captain of her Majesty's 50th Regt., and youngest son of the Right Hon. Lord Wynford.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 24 July 1840

Letter to the Editor, from Norfolk Plains, 1840.  

  A poor man, one of the oldest Norfolk Islanders, commonly known as Jim North (aged 75,) was brought before the Police Office by John Cox, by the orders of Benjamin Waters, to get the Police Magistrate to forward him to the hospital, in a dying state, - will you believe it, Sir, or much esteemed Police Magistrate, ordered him to gaol, when he, the Police Magistrate, was Treasurer to the Benevolent House.  The man was put into a cold, damp, solitary cell, and when the javelin man wert to call him in the morning he was found a corpse. .  .  .  After the examination of Waters, the foreman put in a verdict which was received and signed by the foreman, that the deceased died by the visitation of God, and the neglect of some person or persons unknown, when a juror said I will not sign such a verdict as the parties are known, therefore the inquest was adjourned again till Saturday at 11 o'clock. .  .  .   JUSTICE.

  [The deceased should have been forwarded to the hospital for medical assistance when he complained of being ill.  He should have been sent to gaol, and put into a cell.]


The Hobart Courier, 31 July 1840

GOVERNMENT NOTICE. - Samuel Lapham to be Coroner for the Territory.


The Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 4 August 1840

Another letter on this case.


Cornwall Chronicle Launceston), 15 August 1840

.  .  .  the reports of several inquests are likewise unavoidably postponed.

Original correspondence.

Long letter in reply to JUSTICE.

Launceston Advertiser, 20 August 1840

  AN inquest was held on Saturday last, at the Scottish Chiefs, in view of the body of an infant named Gorge Fowler. The principal witness in the case was the mother of the child. It appeared that on Monday week last, she was at Mr. Browns's public house, on the river Tamar, and there fell in with a man named Robert Humphries, with whom she had formerly been fellow-servant.  He requested permission to accompany her to Mr. Beckford's, where she was proceeding in search of her husband, who was working in the neighbourhood.  When about a mile from Mr. Browns's, Humphries brutally assaulted her, and knocked the child out of her arms several times.  The child appeared perfectly well until Wednesday night, when it became cross and refused its food; on the following morning at daybreak, it was found dead in the bed.  By the evidence of Dr. M'Curdy, it appeared that there were no signs of violence upon the child whatever, but that it had been labouring under a chronic disease.  He believed death to have been occasioned by the combined agencies of neglect, and cold, acting upon a diseased constitution.  He was certain its death was not occasioned by manual violence.   Upon this evidence, the Jury returned a verdict of Died by the visitation of God, and the coroner committed Humphries to gaol, for further examination upon the charger of assault.

  Another inquest was held on Monday last, upon the body of an infant, which died at the female factory, when a verdict of Died by the visitation of God was returned.


Launceston Advertiser, 27 August 1840

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Thursday last at the Court House, before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq. Coroner, on view of the body of a child eight months old, named Emma Worrall, who died in the female factory on the 22d int.  After carefully investigating the cause of the child's death, a verdict of Died by the visitation of God was returned.


Launceston Chronicle, 29 August 1840

Inquest. - In consequence of the suddenness of Dr. Howe's death, at Evandale, that gentleman having been found dead in his bed, an inquest was held on view of the body before [R.] Wales, Esq., Coroner.  Doctors Seccombe and Salmon very satisfactorily explained the cause of death to the Jury, who returned a verdict of Died by the Visitation of God.


  An inquest was held before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., Coroner, on Tuesday last, at the Court-house, on the body of a child who died in the Factory. Verdict, Died by the Visitation of God.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 1 September 1840

SUDDEN DEATH. - We have to record, this week, the sudden and lamentable death of poor Seymour, formerly surveyor.  It appears, that the unfortunate man left Hobart Town for North West Nay, yesterday week.  He slept that night at Mr. Cartwright's hut, at Crayfish Point; and on the next night, at Mr. O'Connor's, Brown's River.  He left there on the following morning, and was not again seen, until he was found dead on the Friday evening, in the bush, about a mile from Mr. O'Connor's.  An inquest was held on the body.  Verdict - Died from Apoplexy.


Launceston Advertiser, 3 September 1840

  An inquest was held on Thursday last at the Bricklayers' Arms, on view of the body of an infant child, named Christopher Charles Edwards.  It appeared by the evidence of the father, and of a little girl employed as servant in the house, that about six o'clock on the morning of the day previous to the inquest, the child was found dead in its bed, having been suffocated  during the night, by getting its head under the pillow.  The evidence of Dr. Grant proved that the death of the child as caused by suffocation, and a verdict to that effect was accordingly returned.


Monmouthshire Merlin, 5 September 1840


  By the Arabian, Captain Bankier, arrived at this port (Bristol), from Launceston, New South Wales, we have the particulars of the following distressing accident which occurred to her at sea.  She left Launceston in the latter end of April, and on the 13th May, having been out a fortnight, she was about 300 miles to the east of New Zealand, in lat. 48 S, long. 175 W.  Just at break of day a sudden squall came on and a tremendous sea swept over the ship, forcing her in bulwarks and carrying off her wheel, with the man at the helm, and the round house on deck, in which the passengers and part of the curfew slept.  In one moment eleven human beings were swept into eternity! No arm could be stretched to save them - no assistance by any possibility would be rendered.  In an instant, in the twinkling of an eye, the whole were overwhelmed in the midst of the rolling billows, and nothing was heard but the hoarse roar of the remorseless waves as they swept past with their victims.

  Several others of the seaman had narrow escapes.  One man was caught by the spindle of the wheel as the waves were hurrying him across the deck, and another was driven with great force against the sides of the ship.  A large quantity of the stores of the ship were also lost.

  The names of the unfortunate sufferers are Henry Miles, the second mate; Dirk Vanderson, the carpenter; John McBride, seaman; and Alfred Skelton, apprentice.

  Of the passengers, Mrs. Younghusband and her three daughters, all young girls about six or seven years of age; and Mrs. Matthews and two children were ,lost.  Mrs. Matthews had another child with her on board, an interesting, intelligent little boy, about six years of age, who was providentially saved.  The little fellow had been taken by one of the sailors into his berth, and thus escaped destruction.  Mrs. Matthews was a widow lady, and was on her return to her friends in England.  Her husband, who was a coach-builder in Launceston, died suddenly a short time before.  All now left of the family, is the poor little boy, but he is not left alone, for with the generosity which characterises the British sailor, there is not a man on board the Arabian, from the caption to the seaman before the mast, who does not feel a deep interest in the boy's welfare, and who would not willingly endure any privation rather than see him want. .  .  .  .   Bristol Gazette.


Launceston Advertiser, 10 September 1840

INQUEST,. - An inquest was held at the Court-house, on Wednesday last, on view of the body of a child, named Sarah Jones, who died in the female factory.  Dr. M'Curdy gave satisfactory roof as to the cause of the child's death, and a verdict of died by the visitation of God, was accordingly returned.


Hobart Town Courier, 11 September 1840

  We alluded last week to the melancholy loss on Tasman's Peninsula of the schooner Echo, bound from this place to Sydney.  .  .  .   On Tuesday, Constables Rigby and Dent found three bodies about a mile from the place where they first discovered the wreck; they were in a state of nudity, and much bruised. One had the letters R. M. and an anchor depicted inside his left arm; the upper part of his scull was quite off.  Another had only the waistband of his trousers, the other part seemed to have been torn off, and a leathern strap of belt; he appeared from his features and long black hair, to be a South Sea Islander. The third had a large black silk handkerchief round his neck. The bodies were carried into the settlement, and an inquest held on the remains, which were afterwards decently interred in presence of the Commandant, and some of the other officers, in the "Isles des Morts."


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 12 September 1840


Evidence taken at an inquest held at the Patriot inn William the Fourth, at Evandale, on the twenty-seventh day of August, 1840, before Robert Wales, Esq., Coroner, on view of the body of William Dunbar Howe, Esq., M.D.

  Charles Bradfield sworn, saith:- I am an assigned servant (groom) to Mr. Nicholson, of Launceston; I knew Dr. Howe, I last saw him alive on Thursday; on that day I drove him from Launceston to this house in a gig; he came out for change of air; he was so ill that he  could not walk, he used crutches; I had to carry him out of the gig into the house; he complained of shortness of breath and pain in his limbs; he said to me that he was afraid his lungs were affectd; I set him down at this house, and went away about twenty minutes afterwards.  He appeared to be in low spirits from illness when I brought him out; he told me when I went away to come again for him on Saturday or Sunday to see him; I was then to take him to Mr. Kitson's at the Cocked Hat, as Mrs. Willmott said she could not make it convenient for him to stay here; he coughed several times on his way out with me; the body I have seen is that of William Dunbar Howe.

  It is about three weeks since Dr. Howe was first taken ill; he said he wished to get rid of his horse as he did not think he should want him any more; I have not known Dr, Howe to drink to excess within the last three months; he complained of pain in the chest on the day I brought him out here; and when I was lifting him out of the gig he desired me to be careful for that he had a blister n his chest. (Signed) CHARLES BRADFIELD.

  James Noon sworn, saith:- I am cook in the assigned service of Mr. John Willmott of Evandale.  On Tuesday night last I took Dr. Howe some tea and bread and butter, but he did not eat anything; he then told me he was pretty well, but that he felt great weakness in his knees; he appeared to be in good spirits, and asked for a book to read; in about half an hour afterwards I assisted him to undress and to go to bed; previous to this he had taken some medicine of a white colour, which I mixed for him at his desire with a little sugar in a teaspoon; he said this medicine was taken for the purpose of opening his bowels; he asked me if I would stop with him that night in the room, as he expected the medicine would operate, and he should probably require assistance; ; I did stay with him all night; it was about twelve o'clock when I first laid down, and before that I asked him how he was, he said he felt as usual; I burned a light al night; about one in the morning deceased was affected by the medicine he had taken, and called me up to assist him; he did not complain of any pain at that time; the medicine affected him for about two hours at intervals; he said it was calomel he had taken.

  Deceased then sent me to get a glass of brandy, which I brought him in a wine glass, rather better than half full, and which he drank.

  Deceased had had one glass of wine and water on the day of the night of which he died; I have attended him constantly since his arrival last Thursday, and during that time I have not seen him intoxicated; his appetite was bad, since he had been here he has eaten but little.

  About half an hour after he had taken the brandy, as before described, he called to me and asked for a little water which he drank and appeared to be more composed; he then desired to turn him a little over on his right side and said, "James, I think you may as well lie down now, for I shall do very well till morning."  I accordingly laid down and went to sleep, (about, I think, three or four o'clock in the morning), and did not wake until just before daylight; I then went round to the bed, and not perceiving that he breathed, I placed my hand on his face, which I found to be quite cold.

  He lay precisely in the same position in which I had left him before going to sleep, as before described, (nearly on his back); I did not observe any extraordinary appearances about his mouth; there was no froth; his head was a little elevated; I saw no appearance of blood having issued from his mouth at this time; immediately I found him dead I went and informed my master and mistress, who instantly arose and went to the room; I heard him cough a little, while the medicine was operating. (Signed) JAMES NOON.

  William John Irvine, Esq., sworn, saith:- I am a physician residing at Launceston; I have seen the dead body lying in the adjoining room; it is the late William Dunbar Howe.  I last saw him alive to the best of my recollection this day fortnight; he complained of cough and internal weakness; I attended him medically; his cough appeared to me to be caused by a deranged state of the  stomach and bowels; he stated that he frequently felt very uneasy sensations in his head (placing his hand on his forehead); I ordered some medicine for him; I considered his ailment so slight, that I did not think it necessary to see him again; he appeared to me to be labouring under depression of spirits when I saw him; I have examined the body of the deceased; my opinion is, that deceased's death has been natural, but I cannot positively say, unless the body was opened; in the absence of a post mortem examination I am of opinion that the deceased died from apoplexy. (Signed) W. J. IRVINE.

  William Seccombe, Esq., sworn,  saith:- I am Assistant Colonial Surgeon at Launceston; I have examined the body of the deceased Dr. Howe, now lying in the adjoining room.  From the evidence I have heard, and from my own personal examination of the body, my opinion is, that deceased died from apoplexy; I am aware that deceased has been ill for some time past, and I understood that he had come to Evandale for the benefit of his health; the impression on my mind  is so strong that the deceased's death was caused by apoplexy, that I do not think it necessary to remove any doubt on my mind, by a post mortem examination. (Signed) WILLIAM SECCOMBE, A.C.S.

  John Richard Salmon, Esq., sworn, saith:- I am District Assistant Surgeon at Perth; I have examined the deceased Dr. Howe.  My opinion is, that the primary and immediate cause of death has been the rupture of a blood vessel in the lungs, perhaps accompanied by effusion on the brain. (Signed) J. R. SALMON, D.A.S.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 12 September 1840

Editorial concerning the inquest on Dr. Howe., critical of the Coroner.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 19 September 1840

  We can do no more in the matter of the inquest on Dr. Howe than wee have done.  It is now in the hands of the government.  We join the public in the belief that the "white powder" caused the death of the Doctor.  It has been our impression from first hearing of his death - the result of the Inquest does not remove that impression.  The white powder? What was it? Can either the Coroner, the Jury, or the learned Doctors who were examined, tell?  What was the white powder?  Was it arsenic?  Was it chalk?  What was it?


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston) 26 September 1840


  This day an inquest was convened before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., Coroner, at the Ship Inn, St. John-street, upon the body of William Power, late carpenter of the barque Ocean Queen, who came to his death by drowning on the night of Saturday, the 12th instant.

  The jury having chosen Mr. Robert Brand as foreman, been sworn in, and taken a view of the body, proceeded t hear the following evidence:-

  Mr. William Southey, Chief Officer of the Ocean Queen, - Remember Saturday week, the 12th instant; about six o'clock in the evening p.m. gave deceased permission to go on shore for half an hour; believed he had neither money nor watch upon his person; never saw him again alive; deceased was sober, not desponding, nor had he any quarrel with any one as far as witness was aware.

  George Moody, assigned servant to Mr. De Little, had charge of his master's boat the previous day at the North Esk river, near Mr. Scott's wharf; saw body of deceased floating down the river, near the piles on the left bank; sculled off, and with the assistance of other parties brought it on shore.

  Samuel M'Curdy, Esq., M.D., an Assistant Colonial Surgeon, deposed - I have this day examined the remains of William Power very minutely; there is no mark of violence what-[ever[ that I can discover upon them; I am quite sure the body has been in the water more than a week, perhaps a fortnight, judging from the state o decomposition it is in, and the season of the year.  I believe the deceased William Power came to his death by suffocation caused by drowning, I come to that conclusion from the absence of any marks of violence, and the bloody scum issuing from the nostrils and mouth.

  William March, seaman of the Ocean Queen, saw deceased last between eight and nine o'clock on Saturday, 12th instant , at Mr. Lukin's public-house, he left to bring a person witness wished to see; never saw deceased again alive; at half-past seven o'clock same night the schooner Blossom passing the Ocean Queen, some one on board hailed her, and asked  witness who was on  watch, if the deceased was on board; witness finding the carpenter's berth  empty replied no, when the person, supposed to be the pilot, said he believed he was drowned, he having been on board the Blossom, and as he was going on shore there was a noise heard and a splashing, and his hat had been picked up and put on board the Indemnity. (The hat was here produced and recognised.)

  This being all the evidence at hand further proceedings were postponed until Monday week, 5th October, by which time the pilot would be in attendance from George Town.  The jury were then bound over and the inquest adjourned.


Launceston Advertiser, 1 October 1840

William Power inquest, slightly more detail.


The Colonial Times (Hobart), 6 October 1840

  An inquest was held on the 29th ultimo, at Ransley's Inn, Falls, New Norfolk, on the body of Mary M'Donald, whom it appeared died from severe bruises inflicted by her husband, Alexander M'Donald.  An investigation took place before the coroner, Thomas Mason, Esq., and a respectable jury, when a verdict of manslaughter was returned against the prisoner.


The Colonial Times, 6 October 1840

  Captain Latham, of the French whaler Reunion, was killed by a whale striking him.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston) 7 October 1840

Letter to the Editor re Inquest on Dr, Howe, and editorial comment.


Launceston Advertiser, 8 October 1840

  AN Inquest was held on Tuesday last at the Bull's Head, before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., Coroner, on view of the body of Mrs. Isabella Rose, who expired suddenly on the previous evening.

  The jury empannelled upon the occasion consisted only of seven, being the first jury summoned under the new act.

  James Rose, being sworn, deposed - I am brother t Mr. Alexander Rose, the husband of the deceased; Mr. Rose left Launceston for Port Phillip on Thursday evening.  I have lived in the same house with the deceased for about 3 weeks, during which time she frequently complained of being in a weak state of health.  Yesterday evening she complained of weakness, and whilst sitting on the sofa after tea, suddenly fell down upon the floor.  I assisted her up, and she again seated herself upon the sofa; she afterwards ordered the servant, Thomas Westwood, to get some port wine and groats, and make her some gruel; and retired to bed about seven o'clock.  About a quarter of an hour afterwards, Miss Yates called me into Mrs. Rose's bedroom; she appeared to be in a state of great anxiety about her husband and had been very anxious about him for several days.  I sat down by her bedside, and endeavoured to persuade her to be less anxious, and began reading to her a portion of "Hervey's Meditations." I had been reading about three minutes, when she started suddenly up, and exclaimed, "That is true!" Laid hold of her hand, and supported her till Thomas Westwood came; in a few seconds she was dead.  She did not partake of the gruel, nor did she appear as if she had taken anything to injure her that day.  I sent for Dr. Porter immediately when Mrs. Rose started up n the bed.  About three quarters of an hour after the death of Mrs. Rose, at the request of her mother, the body was conveyed to her hose in Brisbane-street.  It was placed on a mattress in a cart, and removed between nine and ten o'clock by myself, and three men named Robert Wells, Wm. Carr, and Thomas Williams, Miss Yates, and Mrs. Rose's mother were present.

  Miss Matilda Yates: I have lived with the deceased, Mrs. Rose, since February last; latterly her health had been very bad; she has been low-spirited ever since the departure of her husband.  She took an airing in her carriage yesterday morning, after which I dined with her; she took nothing but a little broth.  (Witness here corroborated the testimony of Mr. James Rose, respecting the deceased falling off the sofa after tea). Mrs. Rose went to bed immediately after she had given the order for the gruel; was afraid to remain alone with her in the bedroom, fearing she might have another fit.  I called to Mr. James Rose, and asked him to sit by her, which he did, and I retired into my own room, which was adjoining.  Mr. Rose was reading to her Hervey's meditations, when he suddenly stopped; looking through the doorway, I saw Mr. Rose supporting the deceased in bed.  He told me to send for a doctor, and I did so; I told him I would also send for Mrs. Rose's mother, but, as I could find no one to send, I went myself.  Before I left the room, Mr. Rose said, "She is no more - she's gone!"I returned with Mrs. Rose's mother in about half an hour, and by her orders the body was placed on a mattress, and moved to her residence in Brisbane-street.

  Wm. Rees Pugh.  I am a surgeon; I was called to attend the deceased last night, and saw her between nine and ten o'clock at her mother's house - she was quite dead.  I examined the body, and find that her death was occasioned by apoplexy. There was a considerable quantity of blood effused on the surface of the brain; the substance of the brain upon being divided presented numerous bloody points, the ventricals and base of the brain congeaied; a large quantity of serous fluid.  The vessels on the surface of the brain were remarkably large and distended; her death must have been nearly mediate after the first effusion.  I have attended her occasionally for three or four years; she was subject to attacks of determination of blood to the head, which frequently terminates in apoplexy.

  Dr. Porter: I attended the deceased, Mrs. Rose, professionally; on Sunday last she was exceedingly unwell; there was, however, no symptom of apoplexy about her.  I was sent for to attend her last night, but I was from home.

  Thomas Westwood corroborated the evidence of the former witnesses, and deposed to his being present when Mrs. Rose died.  He was supporting her, when suddenly her head fell back; and laid her down gently upon the pillow, her eyes were then partially closed.

  The jury immediately returned a verdict of Died by the visitation of God.


Launceston Advertiser, 8 October 1840

  The Inquest upon the body of Wm. Power, carpenter of the Ocean Queen, adjourned from the 20th September, was resumed on Monday, the 5th October, when the following additional testimony was produced.

  James Waterland: I am pilot, and was on board the Blossom on the night of the 12th September, then lying at Mr. Scott's Wharf.  I saw the deceased on board, and asked him if he was not going on shore, as I was going to haul the vessel off from the wharf; he mad no answer, but I saw him getting over the vessel's quarter.  About en minutes afterwards, I hard a splash in the water, and immediately went on shore t discover, if possible, hat it was, but could see nothing; I ordered my boat to pull to the spot, and in examining some logs of pine, my man found this hat, which I believe to be the hat worn by Power when I last saw him.  I was obliged to proceed with the Blossom down the river, and therefore gave the hat to the mat of the Indemnity.  Power appeared sober when I saw him; there was no noise on the wharf after he went ashore.

  William Rees corroborated the statement of Mr. Waterland, as to his finding the hat.

  Constable Greentree deposed to his assisting in getting the body of deceased on shore, and  finding upon him part of a flute, and some money, and a knife.  The flute was identified as having been the property of Power by Francis Walters, first mate f the Blossom, who also deposed to his having been in company with him on board that vessel on the night of the accident; he had the flute with him; witness saw him go on shore, and a few minutes afterwards heard a  splash in the water.  Deceased had been drinking, but was not intoxicated.

  Upon this evidence, the jury returned a verdict of - Found drowned.


The Courier (Hobart), 9 October 1840

SUDDEN DEATH. - An aged man, named Yates, as plasterer by trade, and well-known as such among his fellow-townsmen, was discovered some days ago dead in a water-hole., between Kangaroo Point road Richmond.  The unfortunate man had quitted Hobart town to proceed to a farm which he occupied at a place near Bossington, over the water, having to receive on his way some 14 Pounds.  This sum it seems he never received; and as a rumour was spread abroad that he had been murdered, we can truly state that no such awful doom awaited the poor man, but that he fell into a water-hole in a state of stupid imbecility, and so most lamentably met with his death.  - Colonial Times.

Child murder.

  The body of a new born infant was found on Sunday, in a stone quarry above providence valley, in a band box, apparently having been dead about three days.  An inquest was holden yesterday at Mr. Tilley's, Sawyer's Arms, but the result had not transpired when we went to press. - Colonial Times.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 10 October 1840


  On Friday an inquest was held a the Court-house upon the body of a child named William Wood,  aged five months, who died the previous day in the Factory. - Died by the visitation of God.

  On Saturday an inquest was held at the Britannia, on the body of a Negro named John Antoine, who deed the previous day while being conveyed from the George Town road, where he had been found in a state of insensibility, to the Colonial Hospital. - Died from accidental exposure to the cold.


Launceston Courier, 12 October 1840

  AN Inquest was convened on Saturday at the Britannia Hotel, upon the body of a man named John Antoine, who came by his death under the following circumstances.   The Deceased was a man of colour, and had been engaged on Thursday last in planting potatoes.  About three o'clock in the afternoon he left work to go and search for his master's cows.  He did not return that night, and the next morning was found by Mr. Lamb in a state of insensibility, lying upon a private road on Mr. Cameron's estate at Newnham, but he was nearly dead, and was put in a cart to be removed to the Hospital. But before he arrived there, he had expired.  The unfortunate man had been discharged from the hospital about five weeks previous, and since then had repeatedly complained of weakness. He was seen by Mr. Lamb and another witness on the previous evening sitting very near the spot, where he as found in the morning, and in answer to them remarked hat his legs  were very weak, and that he was resting himself.  It rained heavily during the night of Thursday, and Dr. M'Curdy upon examination of the body attributed his death to exposure to cold.  From an examination of the brain of the deceased it was his opinion that he was not of sound mind.  The stomach was found completely empty excepting some undigested raw potato, which he had been seen eating near the spot where he was found on the Friday morning.  The Jury returned a verdict of died by accidental exposure to cold.  The man was spoken of as a very inoffensive person, and the probability is, had fallen a sleep before the r ain had set in, and did not awake until too much enfeebled to assist himself or call for assistance.


  A Coroner's Inquest was held on Friday last at the Court House, on view of the body of a child named Wm., Wood, five months old, who died at the factory on Thursday morning.  Dr. M'Curdy having proved that the death of the child was caused by inflammation, the jury returned a verdict - Died by the visitation of God.  The number of deaths at the factory appears to have considerably increased during the last few months.


The Courier (Hobart), 13 October 1840

INQUEST. - On Monday last, an inquest n view of he body of a male infant was held before Robert Stewart, Esq., Coroner, at the Sawyer's |Arms, Murray-street.  It appeared from the evidence of two men, named Black and Young, that they discovered the body of the infant in question enclosed in a small wooden box, and secreted in a some quarry, situate in Thomas-street.  On reporting the circumstance to Mr. District Constable Symmonds, the box was removed, and the present inquiry instituted.  There was no evidence to show in what manner the infant came into the situation in which it was found, and considerable doubt appearing to exist in the mind of Dr. Officer, te medical witness, whether or not the infant had been born alive, the jury returned, under the directions of the coroner, a verdict of Found dead.


Colonial Times (Hobart) , 20 October 1840


  A woman named Myers was fully committed for trial on a charge of perjury, in giving false evidence before the Coroner, at an inquest lately held on the body of a child who was drowned in the well at Nell's Garden.


Launceston Courier, 26 October 1840

  AN Inquest was held at the Britannia hotel on Saturday afternoon before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq. on view of the body of William Loomes, when the following evidence was adduced.

  Wm. Hoyle: Deceased was employed on Tuesday last in ripping up the flooring boards of a house recently dismantled at the corner of Cameron and George-streets; there was a brick wall close to where he was working about twelve feet high.  About five o'clock, I heard a heavy crash, and turning round, saw that the wall had fallen down into the room where deceased was at work.  I Ran into the street, and called for assistance; Mr. M'Allan came to me, and we began to remove the bricks, when I heard a groan near me, and soon after cleared away the bricks and rubbish from Loomes'  head and body.  He appeared quite insensible; we removed him on to the grass in front of the house; Dr. de Dassel soon after came up, and Loomes was carefully removed to the hospital.  When I found Loomes, he was lying on his face; he complained of pain in the lower part of his body; there was no person at work in or near the house but myself and Loomes at the time the accident occurred; he has no wife or family..

  Josias M'Allen: I reside at the corner of Cameron and George -streets; the house opposite mine was being pulled down on Tuesday last; I saw deceased employed there on Tuesday afternoon.  About six o'clock, I heard a noise like the falling of a wall, and heard some one call out "Run, ruin, here is a man in the ruins!"  I went out of my store, and saw Mr. Hoyle near the house calling for help.  I observed that the brick partition of that house had fallen; the bricks were  cleared away, and in about five or ten minutes after I  first heard the noise of the wall falling, I saw deceased taken from the ruins, and removed to the grass in front of the house.  I got some brandy, and bathed his face; he was at first insensible, but recovered  in about five minutes.

  Dr. Macurdy: Deceased was brought to the hospital between six and eight o'clock on the evening of the 20th instant.  He was in a paralytic state; he said a wall had fallen upon him, and crushed him; he did not complain of pain; his lower extremities were partially insensible to pressure.  He has sunk gradually until to-day, when he died about nine o' clock.  On a post mortem examination, I discovered the symphesis pubic was fractured, and that the pelvis was filled with extravasated blood. And that there was an extensive inflammation of the intestines, caused, I have no doubt, by the fracture I have mentioned, which inflammation I believe produced his death.  I believe the injury from the commencement was mortal, and death inevitable.  The jury immediately returned a verdict of Accidental Death.

  AN Inquest was held at the Court House, on Tuesday last, on view of e body of a woman named Jane Mason, 60 years of age.  The cause of her death will be best understood from the evidence of Doctor M'Curdy.  Deceased was taken to the hospital at the female factory on the 26th March last, having symptoms of fever, from which she recovered, but remained weak, until the 27th of June, when she as attacked with paralysis; under the effects of which she lingered until the 13th September, when she had another attack, which deprived her of speech and motion; her health has since been gradually giving way, and, notwithstanding the use of wine and other stimulants, was liberally had recourse to, she died on the evening of the 20th October.  Verdict - died by the visitation of God.


The Courier (Hobart), 27 October 1840

CORONER'S INQUEST. - On the 21stinstant an inquest was held at the sign of the Kangaroo, Harrington-street, on the body of William Smith, prisoner of h Crown, who was found suspended in a well on the premises in which he resided, in Patrick-street.  The Coroner having sworn the jury, they proceeded to the premises in Patrick-street, which having viewed, and examined the body, they returned to the sign of the Kangaroo.  Thomas Jones of Patrick-street deposed that the deceased, William Smith, lodged with him for the last four months; on the last evening the deceased returned from the Court-house and immediately became sick; he appeared o have been drinking, and paid the witness 5 Pounds out of 6 Pounds which he was indebted to him; the witness left home early in the evening, and on his return, about seven o'clock, not finding the deceased in his usual way, examined the bed-room, where he found his clothes lying about in an unusual manner; he perceived several bills on the table, and pieces of money on them; witness also found a piece of paper in the hand-writing of Smith.  Being much alarmed at his absence he proceeded to look for him, and in looking into the well, found him suspended by the neck; he was quite dead; witness found a hymn book in he sitting room, opened at the evening hymn, which he had been teaching the deceased; he never heard him complain of any person; he was of weak intellect, cheerful disposition, except when in liquor, very little of which took effect upon him.  The jury returned the following verdict: that William Smith, the deceased, came to his death from strangulation, having suspended himself by the neck with a rope in Patrick-street, on the 21st October, being at that time of unsound mind.


Launceston Advertiser, 29 October 1840

INQUEST. - On Monday last, an Inquest was held before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., on view of the body of Bridget Hanagan, who died suddenly on Saturday afternoon.  The deceased was living with a Mf. Henshaw, on Mr. Lawrence's sheep run, about five miles from Town.  She was taken ill on Friday last, and expired suddenly on Saturday afternoon.  Dr. Grant having made a post mortem examination of the body, attributed the cause of death the inflammation in the lungs.  A verdict of Died by the Visitation of God, was returned.

  A daughter of the deceased, apparently eight years of age, was called upon to give her evidence, but, upon being questioned, it appeared that she had no idea whatever of the nature of an oath, was ignorant of the existence of a place of future punishment, and had never said a prayer of any description.  It is to be feared, there are many other children living in the interior in the same lamentable state of ignorance.  The culpability does not rest entirely with the parents; it is the duty of the employer to see that proper religious instruction is provided, and in the more remote districts the men ought to be assembled for the purpose of religious worship as often as possible.


The Courier (Hobart), 30 October 1840


  An inquest was held on Wednesday evening, at M. Patterson's public-house, Ne Wharf, before Joseph Horn, Esq., Coroner, on view of the body of Thomas Barley, a seaman of the brig Olinda.  The Captain of the vessel proved Barley's returning on board about seven o'clock in the evening very drunk; that he remained on board for an hour, but persisted in again going on shore; and it is supposed slipped eiher from the ship's side or the gangway into the river.  The jury returned a verdict - came to his death accidentally and by misfortune, by slipping off the stage or gangway on going ashore from the vessel.

  An inquest was held on Wednesday morning, at the House of Correction, at the cascade, before J. Hone, sq., Coroner, on view of the body of a male child named John Martin, aged here weeks; the mother, H. Martin, being there imprisoned when she was confined of this child; it had been sickly from its birth, and subject to convulsive fits.  Dr. Dermer proved that the cause of the child's death was convulsions caused by the disordered state of the bowels and general debility.  Verdict - died a natural death.

  An inquest was held on view of the body of Edward Bradley, before Joseph Hone, Esq., Coroner, 26th October.  The deceased, Edward Bradley, was first petty officer of H.M.S. Erebus, Captain Ross.  On Saturday last, Bradley was employed drying a water tank in the main hold, with a fire of coals placed in a small copper; at supper time, deceased was missing; one of his messmates went in search of him, and found him lying in the bottom of the tank with his left hand in the fire much burned.  He was taken out immediately, but life was extinct. Doctor Roberts of the Terror used every exertion to restore animation, but without effect. The jury returned a verdict, that Edward Bradley came by his death from suffocation, by the fumes arising from fire in drying a tank on duty, and accidental death was recorded.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 31 October 1840

CORONERS JURY ACT.  - Four jurors fail to appear.


Colonial Times Hobart), 3 November 1840

  On Wednesday last, the 25th instant, an inquest was held at the Female House of Correction at Cascade, before Joseph Hone, Esq., touching the death of a child, three weeks old, named Joseph Martin. .  .  .   James Marshall, an Emancipist, rejected by the Coroner as a Juror; Editorial comment.] See also Colonial Times (Hobart), 10 November; a correction.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 4 November 1840

CORONER'S INQUEST. - On Monday an Inquest was held before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., at Mr. Mason's, Wellington-street, upon view of the body of George Thompson.  It appeared in evidence, that both the deceased and his wife were habitual drunkards; that on Sunday afternoon hey intoxicated themselves with malt liquor and gin, and then laid themselves on the bed and fell asleep.  To Thompson it was the sleep of death, for upon his wife waking she found him insensible; the police were called in, and in about a minute his heart ceased o beat - he was dead.  Dr. M'Curdy gave it as his opinion, that the cause of death was serous apoplexy.  The jury returned a verdict of Died from apoplexy, caused by excessive intoxication.  The deceased was a wheelwright, an excellent tradesman, but drunkenness was his bane.


Launceston Advertiser, 5 November 1840

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the Elephant and Castle, on Monday last, before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., on view of the body of a man named George Thomson.  Constable Kent was on duty in Wellington-street, on Sunday night, and his attention was directed to the house of deceased by the voice of a female calling out, "Oh my Jordy, my Jordy!" Upon entering the house, he found Thomson lying on the bed nearly dead; the woman in a distracted state was hanging over him by the bedside.  Both had evidently been intoxicated, and the remains of some gin and wine were found in the room.  Dr. Macurdy was sent for, but the man died before he arrived at the house.  Upon examining the body he found that death was occasioned by apoplexy, brought on by habitual intoxication.


Launceston Courier, 16 November 1840

INQUEST. - An inquest as held at the Britannia Hotel, on Thursday last, before Major Wentworth, Coroner, on a view of the body of a child named Ellen Payne.  By the evidence of the father-in-law, it appeared that the child was in an adjoining room to him on the evening of the preceding Tuesday, when he heard her screaming, and although at the time, he was lying dangerously ill in bed, he went to her assistance, and upon opening the door found her clothes in flames.  He very imprudently stripped them off, instead of rolling a blanket round the child as should always be done in such cases.  The injuries sustained were so severe that Dr. Grant, who arrived about five minutes after the accident, entertained no hope of her recovery; she died on the Thursday morning.  The accident occurred whilst the child was in the act of lifting a saucepan off the fire.  A suspicion was apparently entertained by one of the Jury, from what he had heard, that she had been subject to ill-treatment, and to satisfy him two of the neighbours were examined, but the result was that the reports originated amongst some gossiping women, who it was remarked by one of the Jurors, "would be worth more, if they had less to talk about."

  There is a great deal of truth in this remark, it applies to the six [sex?] generally.

  The following directions to save life when the clothes are on fire ought to be known to every parents and child in the island. .  .  . .


Colonial Times (Hobart), 17 November 1840


  An Inquest was held yesterday, at the house of Mr. Edward Watson, North West Bay, before Robert Stewart, Esq., on view of the body of a free man named Robert Pool, who had for some time past been employed in the vicinity of North West Bay, splitting and sawing timber until Saturday last, when he complained of a pain in his chest, and suddenly dropped down dead.  From the testimony of Dr. Learmonth, and other witnesses, it was conclusive, that he came to his death from the rupture of one of the large blood vessels, issuing from the heart, and the jury returned a verdict - Died by the visitation of God.

  At 8 o'clock yesterday evening, another Inquest was held before the same Coroner, at the house of Mr. Worn, Davey-street, on view of the body of Margaret Smmonds, holding a ticket-of-lave, the wife of William Simmonds, a sawyer at Cascade, , who dropped down dead in Davey-street, on Saturday evening last, and from the evidence of Dr. Bedford and other witnesses, it was evident that she had died from an Aneurism of the Aorta, and the Jury returned a verdict - Died by the visitation of God.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 18 November 1840

CORTONER'S INQUEST. - On Tuesday, an Inquest was convened by D'Arcy Wentworth, Esq., Police Magistrate, in the absence of P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., Coroner, upon view of the body of Ellen Payne, a child between nine and ten years of age, who came to her death by burning.

  Samuel Smith. - The deceased is a child by my wife's first husband; on Tuesday last I was taken dangerously ill and went to bed; Drs. Seccombe and De Dassel attended me; shortly after, the deceased, who is my daughter-in-law came home, and after delivering several messages to me went into the room where the body now lies to get her tea; there was a small quantity of fire in the room in about an hour afterwards I heard her screaming out, "Father, father!" my legs were very much cramped up, but I made an effort and got up; going towards the room where she was, I saw her clothes were in flames, and I picked up a tub of water which is in the passage between the two rooms, and threw it over her; I then tore off her clothes, while my wife went to Mrs. Symmonds and the neighbours for assistance; I wrapped the child in a sheet and placed her upon the bed; I asked her how it occurred and she said her clothed caught fire while stooping to take a saucepan of rice water off the fire;, which I was ordered to drink by the doctors; Dr. Grant attended in a few minutes after the accident, and until between nine and two o'clock last night; the child died about six o'clock this morning; my wife was in the room attending me at the time the accident happened.

  Dr. James Grant. - I have examined the body of the deceased; the burns are extensive and dangerous; she is covered from the head to the feet with blisters; I considered the buns fatal from the first time U saw her; she never rallied from the time of the accident; every attention was paid her by her father and mother; the child was sensible in the first instance, but subsequently became delirious.

  A juryman named Cooper here strongly hinted that the child had in her life been treated unkindly by her parents, upon which, his, Cooper's wife was called in to make good the statement, but denied any knowledge of the fact herself; all she knew arose from tittle-tattle with her neighbours.

  Here the Coroner retired, for the jury to make up their minds, and in about half-an-hour was informed by the foreman, that the majority of the jury were of opinion, in consequence of the representations of the pertinacious Mr. Copper, that Mrs. Mary Smith, the wife of a carpenter who resided close to the house where deceased met the accident should be called, and she was called, but knew nothing as to the alleged cruelty.  Mr. Cooper had not one word to say even to his own witness.  The jury returned a verdict that the deceased, Eliza Payne, came to her death accidentally, buy burning, and not otherwise.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 18 November 1840

EFECTS OF DRUNKENNESS. - On Thursday, a whaler, commonly known as "Vinegar Dick," died after a week's illness, in St. Giles.  The deceased, since his return from his last whaling voyage, had continually devoted himself to the bottle, and the result was a premature death.  No inquest was held upon the body, in consequence of a medical gentleman having attended Vinegar Dick previous to his decease.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 21 November 1840

A CASE OF HARDSHIP. - John Williams, failing to appear as a juryman.


Courier (Hobart), 8 December 1840

  At Debsborough, Bream Creek, an inquest was held before B. Bayly, Esq., Coroner, on the 20th ultimo, on the body of George Bradshaw, a prisoner of the Crown, storekeeper to Mr. H. M'Guinness, who was found dead on the Landspit, near that place.  The jury returned a verdict of accidental death, it appearing in evidence that the unfortunate man took out a fowling-piece, to shoot opossums, and from the position of the wound, and comparing some slugs which he had in his pocket with others found in his body, when opened by the Doctor, together with the position in which the body lay, there could be no doubt but that he shot himself accidentally, when pushing a bird's nest with the butt end of a gun.  This unfortunate man was missing for some days; and when his body was found, his faithful dog was sitting at the head, and although the place abounds with vermin, had evidently performed the duty of a faithful sentinel, as the body was untouched.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 9 December 1840

COONER'S INQUEST. - On Tuesday, an inquest was held at Monaghan's, Britannia, before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., Coroner, upon view of the body of Elizabeth Barrington, a child aged three months.  It appeared in evidence that, on Friday morning last, about eight o'clock, the mother of the deceased placed her upon the bed, her head resting upon the pillow; in about half an hour afterwards, when she went to kiss the child, she found it was dead. No information was given to the police of the sudden death until the following Monday, during which time decomposition had made such rapid strides that Dr. M'Curdy, who examined the body, stated that it prevented him arriving at an accurate conclusion as to the cause of death, but he was of opinion, the child had come to its death n a natural way.  The jury returned a verdict of Died by the visitation of God, from natural causes, and not otherwise.


The Courier (Hobart), 12 December 1840


  On Monday an Inquest was convened at the Sawyers' Arms, before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., Coroner, on view of te body of Ann Hall, who died on Monday morning, at 11 o'clock.

  Mrs. Ann Collyer. - I have known deceased for the last 18 months; her and her husband lived next door to me; I knew she was a woman of intemperate habits during the whole of that time, and I have heard her and her husband Thomas Hall, quarrel very frequently; deceased was about twenty-five years of age, and had one child, aged about twenty-three months; about 7 o'clock on Saturday morning she came into my house, and said she had been drinking out of a bottle of Cape wine that morning; she stopped about three minutes, and then went towards her own house; about an hour afterwards I went into her house, and saw deceased sitting by the fire-place.  I returned again between eleven and twelve o'clock.  I saw deceased's child, sitting at the outer door of the house, crying; she had half a pint tumbler in her hand, which was half full of Cape wine; I took the child inside the house, and then threw the wine away out of the tumbler, and put her upon the bed, and on the floor of that room, by the side of the bed.  Anne Hall was lying on her side, fast asleep; I tried to wake her, but could not; the man I had seen before, was sitting in the place I had previously seen him; he appeared more intoxicated at that time; the two case bottles were still standing upon the table, but I did not examine them particularly either time; I went for a man named William Hacktrip, who aided me in lifting her upon the bed; I then shut the outer door, and came away.  Between  five and six o'clock that afternoon, I heard the child crying; I went in and found deceased lying on the floor; the man I had left in the house had gone away; the child was sitting upon the bed crying; deceased was lying in the same place I had before seen her, and her clothes were very wet, as though water had been thrown upon them; I aw no person in the house, nor near it; I awoke her, and told her to shift her clothes.

  William Weymouth, Esq., surgeon. - Thomas Hall came to me between six and seven o'clock yesterday morning; he said his wife, or woman, had been drinking very hard, and he did not expect her to live, and begged me to go and see her; I accompanied him to the house; I found deceased in bed, undressed; she appeared to be in a composed sleep, and I thought it advisable to let her have her sleep out; she had a good pulse; I desired Hall to let her lay quiet, and to let me know if any alteration took place; I went away; at nine o'clock Hall came again, saying she was materially worse, and wished me to go and see her; I went soon after, and found her worse; I attempted to bleed her, but the blood did not flow freely; Hall asked if it was necessary to have any further advice, and I sent him to see if Dr. Seccombe was at home; he was not, and Dr. Porter was then called in; we were of opinion she was in a sinking state; I sent a draught by Hall, but I understand she had not power to swallow it; Hall came to me a third time, and  said he was told his wife was dying, and wished me to see her again; I returned immediately after him, and found her dead; she appeared to have been dead half an hour.  I have examined the body of Anne Hall, and there are marks of two blows, one on the fore part of the crown of her head, and the other on the left side of the occiput; neither of these blows had caused any depression of the skull or any fracture, but a slight extravasation between the skull and the scalp, and I believe neither of these blows could have caused death, and there was no other marks of violence on Anne Hall; upon opening and examining the skull, I found coagulated blood, from half an ounce to an ounce, between the skull and the right hemisphere of the brain; from some rupture of a blood vessel in the brain, caused, I should think, very likely by excessive dinking, and not by either of the blows I have mentioned.  I think they were obviously too slight to have produced such an effect; a fall from the bed on the floor might have produced either of the blows I have spoken of.

  Thomas Hall having been warned not to say anything to his own prejudice - sayeth, I have been free five or six years.  I have been married to deceased about four years; she was a prisoner of the crown; she was about twenty-five years of age; I left my house about five o'clock on Saturday, and went to Mr. Steiglitz farm on the Tamar, three miles from Launceston; I remained there all day, and did not get home until half-past eight o'clock at night; the front door was shut; upon going into the house, I found my wife lying in the outer room, on he floor, with her clothes on, very drunk, and asleep; the child was lying on the opposite side of the room, on the floor; I took up my wife, seated her on a chair, and awoke her; she fell off sideways, and struck her head against the weather-boarding, and another part of her head against a bucket; feeling about for a candle, I found a  stone bottle in the tea chest, half full of rum, I got a light and  said, "Now, Madam, I'll sober you;" I got a quart of water, and threw it into her face; I then undressed her, and put her to bed I put the child to bed, and went to bed myself and slept; between four and five o'clock I awoke and attempted to awake her, but could not; she had a rattling in her throat; I thought somebody might have been hocusing her, (giving her something stupefying in her liquor); I then called up Mrs. Collyer, and  went for Drs. Seccombe and Weymouth.  The jury returned a verdict of Died from the effects of excessive drinking.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 19 December 1840

CORONER'S INQUEST. - On Friday an inquest was convened before P. A. Mulgrave, Esquire, Coroner, at th Ship Inn, St. John-street, on the body of the carpenter of he Barque Madras, who was drowned the previous afternoon.  It appeared in evidence that deceased in attempting to ascend the side of the vessel lost his hold and fell into the water; all attempts to save him were of no avail.  The jury returned a verdict of Accidentally Drowned.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 22 December 1840


We have received some additional information respecting the bushranging robbery, and murder affair in the district of Bothwell, and the consequences of the absence of the Police Magistrate.  

  At half-past 11 o'clock on Sunday the 29th ultimo, one of the neighbouring magistrates was roused out of bed by the arrival of a messenger from Bothwell, with a letter from the district constable, stating that a woman, who had been ill-treated in the settlement, lay in a dangerous state, that her life was despaired of, and that it would be necessary to take her evidence immediately, at the same time informing him that the Assistant Police Magistrate was not home.  The J.P. proceeded immediately to town, and found the woman as described; l that her skull had been fractured, and she was vomiting clotted blood in large quantities.  He did all he thought necessary in the matter, after which he returned home.

  We stated in our last, that two intelligent constables were sent to bring the murdered bodies of the shepherds (if they could) to Bothwell, with such information as they might obtain respecting the murder.  It will be recollected that the shepherds were missing ten days before they were discovered, and then lay two days afterwards before any steps were taken respecting them, while the thermometer was 80 degrees in the shade, yet it was too great an effort of agility for the Bothwell police to discover that decomposition must have been too far advanced to render their removal possible; and consequently the constables had to march nearly 90 miles to make the discovery.  On the 11th instant, in th afternoon, an inquest was at length assembled, and the following evidence was adduced:-

  Inquest held at Green Lake, 11th December 1840, on the bodies of William Trueson, free, and William Freeman Clark, assigned to Mr. Brodribb.

  William Luck sworn, states - I hold a ticket-of-leave; am shepherd to Mr. Flexmore, and reside at this place.  On Sunday last (6th Dec) William, Dann came and asked me if Trueson's dog had come back.  We saw is dog just at that time coming from the spot where the bodies lay.  We went to the place where the dog came from, and found the bodies; I know Trueson by his dress; I saw him dressed so a month ago  The other man William Freeman Cark, had a bad finger for a long time; he now has a rag in the same place; I knew him by that.  I immediately reported the circumstances to Mr. Charles Armitage, and he came and examined the place, and then rode off directly and reported it at Bothwell.

  William Dann sworn, states - I am assigned to Mr. Armitage; I was going home last Sunday morning (6th Dec,) to Bagdad,  I asked Luck where Pittwater (Trueson's dog) was; he began to call the dog, and he came from that spot (pointing to where the bodies lay).  Luck said he had seen the dog come from that direction three or four times; he  said, "I think there is something there"; I said, "Well, let's  go and see."  We called the dog but he would not come, so we went up, and Luck said, "there they lay." I just saw the cord trowsers of a person; we turned back and went over to Armitage's hut; I do not know either of them.  I came back again to the sport with Armitage, and Luck and two more men; we went up and looked at them, and saw more plainly that there were two bodies.  Young and Armitage went off to report it.  

  By a Juryman - I was going home and called here to know if here was any message, I heard at our hut that the dog was missing, and enquired if he came back.  I only came up the day before with young Mr. Armitage with some sheep to the run, and was going back again.  I had heard the men at Mr. Armitage's hut say, that the two men belonging to this hut, William Trueson and William Freeman Clark were missing.  

  By another Juryman - I think it is about a hundred yards from the hut where I found the bodies; I speak of this hut, Brodribb's.

  Henry Pinfold sworn, saith - I am assigned to Mr. Armitage.  On last Wednesday fortnight (29th Nov. Ult.) I was going to the neck after some of my master's sheep that were left behind.  I met Mr. Brodribb's shepherd, Pittwater (i.e. Truseon) about a mile from this on the run; he went with me to my master's and remained all night, and went away about ten o'clock on Thursday morning.  I never saw him again until last Sunday, when I came over here with Mr. Armitage and the others; I never saw the other man before I saw him dead.  

  By a Juryman - I do not know if "Pittwater" was in the habit of carrying firearms; I never saw him with any.

  William Cooper s worn, saith - I am assigned to Mr. Edward Nicholas.  On Friday in the afternoon - that is, this day fortnight (29th Nov.) we were bringing my cattle; we found, when we came to Brodribb's, the door fastened, and a pup dog inside the hut.  We found things thrown about the flooring, open, a damper appeared to have been fresh made ion the table, and baked in the fire.  A fire was lately raked up.  When we first came, no one was in the hurt, and we yarded the cattle and sheep, and waited till night and no one came home; we went in and staid all night.  William Trueson was hut-keeper; they should have been there; no one came home all night; I went away next morning; the men were then missing.

  By a Juryman - I came to the hut with the cattle about half an hour before sundown; there was a good fire to keep the fire alight, a log and ashes thrown over it.

  Edward Swarbreck Hall sworn, states - I am District Assistant Surgeon at Bohwell.  I have examined the bodies on which the inquest is held; they are both in an advanced state of decomposition, and much mutilated, apparently by birds of prey or animals.  On as careful an examination as the state of the bodies will admit of, I have been able to ascertain that, on the taller body, said to be that of William Freeman Clerk, there is a severe fracture of the skull, extending through the parietal and occipital bones to the base of the skull.  That is all the appearance I could observe on that body

  On that of the shorter individual, said to be that of William Trueson, there are on the back of the head, on the left side, two small triangular wounds, and very extensive fractures parietal and occipital bones.  In the loins of the same corpse there is a hole, about the size of the palm of a small hand, one of the lumbar vertebrae is completely destroyed; somewhat higher on the back, there are two holes close together, about the size of a small pea extending quite through into the abdomen.  The first blow must have been done by some heavy blunt instrument, it might be the butt of a musket.  

  On that of the other body, I should think  more likely to have been inflicted by blows from heavy sharp pointed stones, thrown on the body as it lay on the ground.  I consider the holes in the back to be gun shot wounds; they must have been inflicted at some yards, or the space would have been smaller.  They would cause instant death.  I have no doubt that the injuries on both bodies would have caused death.

  Let us now take a short review of this melancholy affair, and in doing so, we look back at date.  On the 10th November, the bushrangers wee comfortably and  confidently following their occupation within 7 miles of the Police-office of Bothwell, on which day they robbed Mr. Ries's place of arms, ammunition, provisions, &c., which was instantly reported at the  said Police-office, and in consequence of which two men were sent after them.   On the 19th, they were again seen and spoken to, on the highway near the same place, which was also reported at the Police-office, and nothing further was done, until the 24th, when, in consequence of the interference of a responsible individual, more constables were sent in pursuit, which however did not seem to disturb them, for they kept near the same quarter, where they were seen by several persons, nor is it at all unlikely, they watched the Assistant Police Magistrate, on his departure for Hobart Town to see the [Brg???] on Saturday the 30th Nov., the day on which they set to work boldly, committed several robberies, and most probably the murder of the two unfortunate shepherds.

  Now we appeal to every principle of justice, whether, when a public officer leaves his post without leave, nor a substitute, he is not liable for all consequences occurring during such unwarranted absence?  We certainly think he is.  We learn, too, that the two constables sent after the two murdered bodies, had no ammunition with them, either to protect themselves or capture the enemy!  After this case it is possible that the person who has so acted, can be permitted to remain in that station one hour longer; we also learn that three other constables who were sent after the bushrangers on the 24th, were compelled to provide their own ammunition or go to war with empty muskets!  In short the district of Bothwell appears to be a safe resort to bushrangers, and runaways, where the trade of robbery and murder may be followed not only with impunity but in perfect safety; this is prison discipline with a vengeance.

  We have just been informed, that four additional runaways have been lurking in that neighbourhood, one of whom Mr. Nicholas's men captured, and brought to Bothwell.  We have also heard, that the shepherds of the district have bravely formed themselves into a party in pursuit of the villains!  We may well ask, what is our equestrian police about in Hobart under such circumstances.

  We exceedingly regret to learn that there had been yet no board of enquiry appointed - but that after the legislative Council is discharged, the mater will be enquired into - what can such procrastination mean?  Can it be possible that such conduct as this is to be passed over?  Is all consideration of public feeling and human life, to be put aside?  We have stated, that the brave shepherds of the district have formed themselves into a police, but what will become of their flocks?  Will the Police Magistrate send his constables with empty muskets to keep these flocks together?  We must wait the issue of another publication, in the mean time all parties concerned may rest assured, our reporter will not be idle.


Launceston Advertiser, 24 December 1840

DEATH FROM DROWNING. - On Thursday night a man named Wm. Moore, carpenter of the Maras, in endeavouring to get on board that vessel by climbing up the main chains, fell into the water, and was drowned.  Several of the crew witnessed the accident and one man dived for him several times, but without success.  The body was dragged for and found about a quarter of an hour afterwards, but life was extinct.  A coroner's inquest held on Friday, returned a verdict of accidental death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 3 January 184

The Diana, St. Helena.


Launceston Advertiser, 6 January 1844

DEATH FROM DRINKING. - It will be remembered that a servant of Mr. Parker's, named Frederick White, was found shockingly mutilated on the 21st Ultimo, on the Westbury Road, near the old Station.  He was driving as two horse cart, being at the time in a state of intoxication.  Having been removed to the Launceston hospital he received medical attention until Monday morning last, when he expired.  Besides other distressing surgical operations, it was found necessary to remove one shoulder blade from the socket.  We understand that he remained under the stupefying influence of liquor twelve hours after the accident occurred, and it is thought the liquor with which he was supplied must have been drugged.  No inquest was held on the body.


Launceston Examiner, 13 January 1844

INQUEST. -  An inquest was taken at the Kangaroo, on Friday afternoon, to enquire into the death of James Propstring, a fine little boy of about six years old, who was accidentally drowned on Monday last. It seems that the deceased, with a little brother of about the same age, was on a visit to Mr. Yates, of the Cataract Mill, as near relation, and were proceeding to the Supply mills.  A boat was hired from Mr. Bonner, at the cataract, for the conveyance to George Town of a party, six in number, including the deceased and his brother.  In Newnham roads, whilst the sail was gibing, a sudden squall threw the boat on her beam ends, so that she sank immediately.  The water being extremely shallow at that part of the river, the boat's mast projected some two or three feet above the surface, and to that frail tenure four human beings were fain to entrust their lives, and by clinging to it managed to keep their heads above water until the arrival of assistance.  It happened providentially that the people belonging to the buoy boat had witnessed the accident, and started immediately for the rescue of the sufferers.  The deceased disappeared the same moment that the boat went down, but his brother was picked up in a state of insensibility.  The body of the unfortunate deceased was found on Thursday, in the vicinity of the wharf, and submitted to medical inspection; although much disfigure, the remains were recognised at those of James Propstring, and Dr. Pugh having given it as his opinion that the deceased came to his death by drowning, the Jury returned a verdict of accidental death.


Launceston Advertiser, 13 January 1844

INFLUENZA. - We understand this prevalent disease is raging violently amongst the children in the Female House of Correction, many of whom are likely to fall victims to it.

A BOY DROWNED. -  On the afternoon of the 8th Inst., a young man from Hobart Town who was paying a visit to Mr. Yates, of this town, accompanied by two youths, all members of the Society of Friends, started in a second class sailing boat to go to the Supply Mills.,  While in the act of wearing the boat in Newnham Reach the main boom jibed, and a gust of wind filling the main-sail at the same instant she capsized, when four adults and two boys who were in the boat were thrown into the river; the boat sank and grounded on a mud bank, leaving the top of the mast above water, to which the four men clung until they were relieved; unfortunately none of them could swim, so they could make no effort to save the children.  Providentially the Buoy-boat which was on her way to George Town was a little astern when the accident took place, and the captain immediately bore up and sent his dingy to render assistance.  They first picked up one of the children, who was floating down the river with his head under water; he was found to be in a dying state, with black lips, and having the appearance of a corpse.  Captain Smith, of the Buoy-boat, succeeded in returning animation in about three quarters of an hour, by the use of blankets and hot water; the four men were saved, but the other boy was not seen again after the boat upset.  Great praise is due to the Captain and crew of the Buoy-boat for their prompt exertions on the occasion.  It is perhaps, worthy of remark that the Buoy-boat would have been far ahead, but for the breaking of the block of the mainsail, which had delayed them some time, and which probably was considered an unfortunate accident at the time, but on which depended, as the event proved, the lives of five human beings.

INQUEST. - An Inquest was held at the Prince of Wales Inn, Paterson-street, on the 122th instant, to inquire into the circumstances connected with the death of James Propsting, s boy of about six years of age.  W. S. Bonner having been sworn, deposed that he was proceeding through Newnham Reach in a sailing boat with three men and two boys besides himself, when the mainsail jibed with a sudden gust of wind, and the boat was thrown on her beam ends by which they were all plunged into the water; the deceased sank, and was not again seen; Samuel Lascelles, a seaman of the Branckenmoor, saw the body floating up the river with the tide yesterday afternoon, and procured a boat, and towed it up to the wharf.  Dr. Pugh deposed that he saw the body taken out of the water, and he had no doubt the decease came by his death by drowning - the body was much disfigured by having been preyed upon by a small species of fish.  The jury returned a verdict of Accidentally Drowned.

INQUEST. - An Inquest was held in the Court House, on the 8th inst., before A. Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, on the body of John Wilcox, an infant who died in the Female House of Correction on the previous morning.  It appeared in evidence that the child was born on the evening of Saturday the 6th inst., and had continued to have convulsive fits to the time of his death; every attention had been paid to him by Drs. Maddox and Benson.  Verdict - Died by the visitation of God in convulsions.

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on the 10th instant at the Court House, before A. Gardiner, Esq., on the body of Jane Bailey, a child who died at the female House of Correction on the previous day.  Verdict - died by the visitation of God of dysentery; also, Eliza Burns. Verdict, died from inflammation of the lungs.


Launceston Advertiser, 25 January 1844

   The body of Frederick Young was found yesterday morning about 6 o'clock; an inquest is to be held at 2 o'clock to-morrow at Mr. Monaghan's.

INQUEST. -On Tuesday last, an inquest was held on the body of F. Jones, who was accidentally drowned on last Saturday night.  In consequence of the absence of a material witness the enquiry was postponed until the following Thursday, when I was again adjourned (from the same cause) until Monday next.  The witness who we believe is residing up the river is to be severely reprimanded (not to say punished) for his negligence, having been twice summoned.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 31 January 1844

INQUEST.  On Monday last, an inquest which had been twice adjourned, was concluded at the house of Mr. P. Monaghan.  It was held to inquire into the circumstances attending the death of Frederick Jones, who fell out of a boat about a fortnight since.  The jury returned a verdict of accidental death.


Launceston Advertiser, 1 February 1844

INQUEST. - An adjourned inquest was held at Mr. Monaghan's, Wellington Street, on the 28th ultimo, touching the death of Frederick Jones. - William Burton, being called in and examined, stated that he and his partner, Henry Gehagan, were joint proprietors of the Edmund cutter,  About half-past eight o'clock, on the 20th, the deceased, who was about seventeen years of age, was passing along the rail of the boat, which was moored below the bar, with the ring of the anchor in his hand, intending to throw it over the quarter, to get the boat into deeper water, his foot slipped, and he fell overboard along with the anchor, which probably struck him so as to stun him, as he, on coming again to the surface, swam away from the boat, although Barton called out and threw the end of a rope to him.  After a short time the deceased called out for the plank to be thrown overboard, but still kept swimming away from the boat, and presently he cried out, "O Lord!" when he (Barton) heard him plunging for a short time, but could not see him for the darkness.  He called the Henry, but, as the wind was blowing fresh, supposed he was not heard. He could not swim, or he would have endeavoured to save him.  Gehagan was on shore buying provisions, and came on board about an hour and a half afterwards, when he went and reported the circumstance at the watch house.  The deceased had been with them five days, and was to have received 6s. a trip for his services.  He was an agreeable and active young man.  He had no property about him.   They had not had any dispute. - The inquest was adjourned to Monday, the 29th, to obtain further evidence. - Henry Gehagan, being examined, corroborated the evidence of the witness who was heard at the former inquest.  He also expressed great regret at the loss of Frederick Jones, who was likely to have been of great assistance to them, and to whom they were both of them very much attached.  The deceased had no property but a prayer-book, which he prized very much. - A coloured boy, who appeared to be the child of a native, and who is employed on board the buoy boat, was examined and corroborated the evidence which had been heard in some particulars. - The jury returned a verdict of Accidentally Drowned, and the coroner, Captain Gardiner, expressed his satisfaction in being able to assure the owners of the boat, Barton and Gehagan, that there was not the slightest imputation resting on their characters.


Launceston Examiner, 10 February 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the court-house on Wednesday afternoon, on the body of a child named Jemima Marshall, who died at the factory on the preceding day.  The jury returned a verdict of died by the visitation of God; it having been proved that death resulted from natural causes.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 13 February 1844

GAOL AND FACTORY. - It is pleasing to learn that the few remarks we have made on the spiritual wants of the gaol has had the desired effect.  We understand that the chaplain is required to perform divine services there three times a week.  We trust the spiritual interests of the female Penitentiary will be equally attended to.  By the way, while writing about that establishment, we may be permitted to inquire, whether any and what difference there is in the nutrition of the milk from the cow, and what is called skimmed milk? What quantity of milk, and of what quality, is allowed daily to each of the children in the female factory, and the price paid for it?  How many children died in the establishment during the last twelve months?  And whether any and what number of inquests have been held upon them? We pause for a reply.

FATAL ACCIDENT. - A few days ago, a private of the 51st regiment, fell down the trap stairs at the temporary barracks ion the Old Wharf, and, after lingering a short time, expired of the injuries he had received.  An inquest was held on the body, and a verdict of Accidental Death returned.


Launceston Examiner, 14 February 1844


WE understand this gentleman, chairman of the quarter sessions and commissioner of the court of requests for the northern division of the island, has applied for leave of absence, in consequence of the precarious state of his health. .  .  . 

INQUEST. - AN inquest was held at the court-house, before Captain Gardiner, on Monday afternoon, upon view of the body of a child named Edward Dodd, about four years old, who died in the female house of correction on the day preceding.  It appeared by the evidence that on Saturday the deceased was playing with another child, in the nursery of that establishment,

and either fell or was accidentally pushed into a bath of scalding water.  There were several women present at the time, but none of them were prepared to state the precise manner in whi8ch the accident occurred, their attention having been first attracted by hearing a splash in the water. Dr. Maddox was immediately sent for, and applied the usual remedies, but ineffectually; the little sufferer expired on the following day.  The jury returned a verdict of accident al death.

DEATH FROM DROWNING. - A private of the 96th regiment named William, Dadd [Dodds] was drowned on Sunday last.  The unfortunate man was bathing near Hobler's bridge, when he was seen to sink suddenly, and rose no more.  The occurrence took place in presence of several persons, but exertions were fruitless. The deceased was a young man, about twenty-two years of age, and being an excellent swimmer it is supposed he was seized with the cramp. The body has not yet been recovered.


Launceston Advertiser, 15 February 1844

MAN SHOT DEAD. - Private letters by yesterday's post, brings the report of a man named Wilcox, residing in Lansdown Crescent, near Hobart Town, having been shot dead on Monday night, whether by, or by order of as neighbor of the name of Shoobridge.  Shoobridge and a man servant were in custody, awaiting the coroner's inquest, which was to take place this day.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 20 February 1844


   We mentioned briefly in our last that an old man, named Wilcox, well known in the city for many years past, had been shot non Monday night, on the ground of the Messrs. Shoobridge, whither, it was supposed, he had gone with another person to remove some onions.  On Tuesday an inquest was held on the body at the Rose and Crown, New Town Road, before Mr. Champ the Coroner, and the following highly respectable jury:- Messrs. S. A. Tegg )foreman), W. Waterhouse, Witt, Goodwin, Wait, Wilson, and J. Barrett,

   Before the case was entered into, the Coroner requested the jury to   dismiss from their minds any reports which they might have heard, and to come to their decision purely upon the evidence to be adduced.

   The jury then proceeded to view the body, which lay in a stable behind the inn.  There was the mark of a gun shot wound, which appeared to have penetrated through the back of the chest, entering through the right shoulder blade, or scapula.  Having viewed the body, the jury returned to the inquest room, when William Smith was brought in and charged with shooting the deceased.  He was defended by Mr. Macdowell.

   The first witness examined was Mr. William Giblin, who deposed to the following effect: - Witness resided near Mr. Shoobridge; about twelve o'clock on Monday night he was  awoke by the barking of dogs; he opened his door, and heard voices in the direction of Mr. Shoobridges's; witness heard a voice which her believed to be Smith's, saying. "Here is another bag;" witness went down to Mr. Shoobridge's, having heard that he had been previously robbed of some onions; when he went down, witness saw Smith and several other men of Mr. Shoobridge's, three of whom, were in their shirts; Smith was dressed in a great coat, and had a gun in his hand; two of the men had in their hands bags, which contained something; witness spoke to Smith, who said he had been watching in a bush near the inion bed, which had been previously robbed; he (Smith) said, two men came over the fence, and one said to the other,  "Come along, John, it is all right;" Smith then said he waited until he thought there was enough onion gathered to know that they were stealing them, when he went towards them, and told them to stop; the man farthest from Smith now ran away, when Smith  said to the other if he did not stop he would shoot him; this, Smith said, he repeated three or four times; the man continued running, and as he was getting over the fence, Smith said he shot him; witness asked Smith if he thought he had shit  him?  Smith said, "Yes, for the man cried out, 'oh!' but yet got over the fence.  Mr. Giblin here went on to say, that he accompanied Smith to the man's hut, and afterwards with two other men to the onion bed, which had been robbed some nights before; Smith said that it was here the men were pulling the onions, an here Mr. Giblin saw the onions had been stolen; Smith pointed out the place where the man got over the fence when he shot him - it was about twenty-five yards from the spot where the onions had been pulled. Mr. Giblin continued to depose as follows: -We all proceeded towards Mr. Washbourn's property - and returning towards Mr. Shoobridge's we saw a man leaning against Mr. Washbourn's fence; that was 300 or 400 yards from Shoobridge's property; the man was dead; information was then given to the Police, and the dead body was removed to the Rose and Crown.

   The next evidence of any import was that of Mr. Richard Shoobridge, who stated in effect that he has a large market garden at Providence [last line of column not legible] and a sked him if he wished to have his garden watched? Witness said he did not like to have his onions stolen; he would like to catch the thieves, and Smith could please himself about the watching; witness also told Smith if he heard the digs bark to call him up; Smith then asked witness for a charge of powder and shot, which witness gave to him; between twelve and one o'clock, Smith awoke witness, and told him that two men had been robbing the onion bed, and that he had shot one of them; witness did not then get up, as he understood the man had got away; some shirt time after, however, Mr. Giblin came to him, and told him that a man was shot; witness then got up, and found that Smith was with Mr. Giblin; Smith said nothing.  The remainder of Mr. Shoobridge's evidence went to corroborate that of Mr. Giblin as to the account which Smith gave of the transaction.

   Other corroborative testimony was adduced by servants of Mr. Shoobridge, and Mr. J. P. Rowe deposed as follows as to the cause of the man's death:- On examining the body, Mr. Rowe saw what appeared to be a gun shot wound in the back, and on the right side; on a post mortem examination, it was ascertained that a charge of shot had penetrated through the chest, shattering the right blade or scapula, lacerating the lungs, and fracturing three of the ribs; there was about a quart of blood effused into the chest, which was the cause of the man's death.

   The inquest was then adjourned till the next day (Wednesday), and subsequently till Thursday, when some additional evidence was adduced, but of no particular importance.  Mr. Rowe was again examined as to the distance at which the deceased was supposed to have been shot.  Mr. Rowe said, "I have not the least doubt of the man having been fired at behind; the direction of the shot was slightly upwards.  I am of opinion that the man who fired must have been very near. I judge of this from the state of the bone (scapula); the shot, also, was concentrated to one point; the wound was a complete whole.  I should say that the distance of ten yards from the man when the gun was fired would be the very utmost. The deceased appeared to have been about sixty years of age.  Judging by appearances, I should think that the prisoner was strong enough, if he had fairly got hold of the man, to secure him.

   The Coroner summed up very minutely, and the jury, after a consultation of nearly three hours, returned a verdict of Manslaughter against Smith, who was accordingly committed for trial, upon the Coroner's warrant.


Launceston Examiner, 21 February 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held before Captain Gardiner, on Monday, at Patterson's Plains, upon the body of Mr. F. W. Palmer, who met with his death in the melancholy manner detailed in the following evidence.  The lamentable occurrence has thrown a numerous circle into affliction.

   James Parks. - I am in the service of Mr.  Frederick Palmer, of Patterson's Plains.  On Saturday last I went out in search of the deceased, Frederick Wood Palmer; when walking down by the side of the North Esk river, I found a jacket which belonged to the deceased, and a small book lying alongside of it.  I called Mr. A. Palmer, and told him that I had found the jacket and book; wee then searched and saw the body of deceased in the river, lying at the bottom, about two yards distant from the bank. The deceased had his trowsers, shirt and boots on, and a ribbon round his neck; I took the body out of the water, and Mr. A. Palmer went home for s board and a sheet; there were about three feet of water where the body was lying; the bank opposite is very steep.  There were no marks of footsteps on the bank; the grass had not the appearance of any person having been lying upon it.

   Alexander Stenton Palmer. - I am a brother of the deceased.  On Friday night, about ten o'clock, I returned home and found that my brother was missing; I was informed that he went out about eleven o'clock that morning, and had not been seen since.  On the following day I made every enquiry, but could get no tidings.  About three o'clock I went down to the North Esk river, which is near our residence, and made search for about two hours; I saw James Parks, and he called out to me, "here is his jacket and his book."  I know the jacket to be my brother's, lookout five feet of water; d into the river and saw his body lying there, in about five feet of water; the bank was very steep.  We could not get the body out, and I told Parks to remain there whilst I went home for assistance.  When I returned I found the body had been taken out.  The fern on the side of the bank had the appearance of being pressed down, as if by a heavy weight.  There is a trifling abrasion or two on the face, but no marks of violence.  Deceased was subject to fits.  I have known him to have four in a day, and sometimes he would be a week without them. The expression on my brother's countenance when taken out of the water, was similar to that which I have observed after he had just recovered from a fit.  The jury returned a verdict of found drowned.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 21 February 1844

INQUEST. - On Monday last, the 19th inst., before Mr. Gardiner, Esquire, Coroner, at the residence of Mr. F. Palmer, Patterson's Plains, on view of the body of Frederick Wood Palmer, his [son], whose body was taken out of the North Esk River., on the Saturday previous.  From evidence elicited from the witnesses examined, it appeared that the deceased was much troubled with fits, and occasional aberration of mind; that about eleven o'clock on Friday morning he left home and not returning during the day, the family became much alarmed for his safety, when every enquiry was made for him, and a strict search [set[ about the neighbourhood .  On Saturday  the banks of the river were examined, when towards the close of the day the coat of the deceased and a book were seen on the bank having a precipitous descent into the river, almost immediately under which, in about four feet of water the body was discovered.  There could be no doubt that deceased was reclining on the bank of the river reading the book, was attacked by one of those fits to which he was subject,  and in a state of insensibility rolled into the river, some fern growing on the bank having been pressed down, evidently having been passed over by the body. The Jury returned the following verdict "Found drowned in the North Esk River, no marks of violence appearing on the body, but how or by what means deceased became drowned no evidence thereof does appear to the Jury."


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 28 February 1844


   Monday, Feb. 19. District Constable Davis exhibited an information against Mr. Michael Bates for non-attendance as a Juryman.  Davis stated that on Monday the 14th instant, an Inquest was held at the Britannia Wine Vaults, in Wellington-street, on the body of a soldier accidentally drowned, and that Mr. Bates, although duly summoned, did not attend.  Defendant allowed the omission, but alleged that it arose out of the impression that he had been called upon in mistake, persons engaged in the medical profession being exempted by law.  The bench regretted that Mr. Bates should have yielded to such an hallucination as he had thereby subjected himself to a penalty of five pounds, the act expressly mentioned chemists and druggists as eligible persons, although medical persons were certainly exempted.  As however, the circumstance appeared to have originated in mistake, the lower penalty would be inflicted at the same time that the costs would be remitted altogether.  Mr. Bates was then fined in the sum of one pound.

   Alfred Seeker pleaded not guilty to an information charging him with a similar offence.  In point of fact his pleas appeared to be a correct one, as he had  attended in obedience to the summons but was out of the way when the names were called, he subsequently mad his appearance, but was informed that he was too late. The bench explained to Mr. Seeker that by the simple act of negligence he had rendered himself equally obnoxious to the penalty as the penalty would prove obnoxious to him; that in short, had he not attended at all, he would not have been a whit more liable; however, as there was evidently no wilful intention on his part to set the law at defiance, the circumstance would be allowed to operate in mitigation of the penalty; her was ultimately ordered to pay a fine of one pound and costs. [Observations by Chief Constable and Coroner follow.]


   On Monday morning, as little before seven o'clock, Sarah Howe, daughter of James Howe, carter - a fine girl about 13 years of age, living as servant with Mrs. Davis, Elizabeth-street, rushed out of the house with her clothes in flames.  Mr. Arthur, of the Derwent Tavern, who was passing at the instant, exerted himself very judiciously in extinguishing the flames, assisted by Mr. Bear, who procured a blanket, in which the sufferer was trolled.  She was removed to the Hospital, and died from the injuries the same evening.  At the inquest, held yesterday at Mr. Wright's, Thatched House, Argyle-street, it appeared that the girl had got up as usual to light the fire, when by some means her dress had come in contact with it. Verdict, Accidental Death. - H. T. Advertiser.


Courier (Hobart), 1 March 1844

SHOCKING ACCIDENT. - A poor girl, of about 13 years of age, employed as a domestic servant in Elizabeth-street, while engaged in lighting the firer on Saturday morning, incautiously placed the burning candle behind her, when the flame caught her clothes, and she was so severely injured that death ensued after some hours of dreadful agony.

   DEATH. - A Coroner's Inquest as held to-day in reference to the death of Mr. F. E. D. Browne, which happened yesterday under circumstances which leave no doubt of suicide.  The unfortunate deceased had, it is understood, committed a forgery, to avoid the disgraceful consequences of which he adopted the desperate resolution of self-destruction.


Launceston Examiner, 2 March 1844

RUNAWAYS. - Three runaways, having been in the habit of frequenting the house of a man named terry, at the Arm of the Creek, for supplies, three constables were dispatched last week to attempt their capture.  After waiting some days, two of the constables took their departure on Saturday night; but the third, named Morton, remained with Terry.  On Sunday morning, he was awakened by three men demanding admittance.  The constable requested they would not break into the house, as he would supply them with the tobacco they requested, as soon as he was dressed.  He took his gun, and upon throwing the door open, presented his piece, and challenged them to surrender.  After aiming some blows at the constable with their weapons, one of them ran off, notwithstanding the caution repeatedly given by the constable, the latter levelled his fire-arm and shot the runaway in the back, who leaped into the air, and then fell dead.  The other two surrendered immediately, and upon being manacled, were conveyed to a place of confinement.  An inquest was geld on Monday, at Deloraine, on the body of the dead runaway, when a verdict of manslaughter was returned against the constable, Morton,

DEATH BY DROWNING. - An apprentice on board the brig Indian, accidentally fell overboard from that vessel, on Friday morning, and was drowned.  Repeated efforts have been made to recover the body, but without success.

   Inquest. - Murder. - The unfortunate man John Jones, to whom we alluded in our last, as having been dangerously wounded by a fellow servant, expired on Thursday.  An inquest sat on the body on the following day, when after a careful investigation of the particulars, a verdict of wilful murder was returned against Matthew Wilk, who was committed on the coroner's warrant.


Launceston Examiner, 2 March 1833



P.S. I suppose you have heard of a constable shooting a bushranger - Terry.  An Inquest was held on the 26th instant; five of the jury agreed to a verdict of justifiable homicide.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 2 March 1844


      WE have found space for the report of an Inquest held at Westbury on a Probation absconder, who was shot by a constable, when in the act of escaping from him.  In ignorance of the instructions given to constables, we have no opinion to express on the verdict.  It appears however to us, that the Jury should have elicited the nature of the instructions given to constables, which certainly cannot justify an unnecessary resort to fire-0arms.  In the case alluded to, it does not appear that the man who was shot was even detected in the act of robbing; he or his comrades demanded tobacco at a house, and in an attempt made by the constable to accuse him, he struck him and then ran away, when he was shot dead.  The verdict was as it should have "manslaughter."  We do not know how it could have been brought bin "justifiable homicide,": in the absence of any thing like violent and immediate resistance of the deceased, to the authority of the constable; nor do we think that even had a struggle taken place, that the constable could legally have used his arms against the absconder after he had got from him, without first calling upon him in the Queen's name to surrender, and showing him his authority.  The duties of a constable employed in the bush cannot probably be very nicely defined; but he ought to be limited in the exercise of his authority to the mere capture of offenders, and be taught that taking the life of a fellow-creature would be held justifiable only in self-defence, and when necessary for the preservation of the lives of the unprotected settlers.

   A judicial enquiry into the case now referred to, and into that of recent occurrence at Hobart Town, when a man was shot in the act of escaping from the garden from which he had stolen onions, will settle the question as to the right or otherwise of individuals adopting a mode of punishment which is seldom carried into effect by the Judges of the highest criminal courts.  Men must not be shot like pigeons; the law of the land provides a punishment commensurate with an offence - neither the stealer of the onions, nor the absconded probationer merited a sudden and violent death!

  ANOTHER Inquest was yesterday held at the Plough Inn, to enquire into the death of John Jowett.  Captain Gardiner officiated as coroner.  In addition to the facts recorded in our last Wednesday's number, it appeared that Wilks and the deceased were both in the employ of Mr. Grant; at the commencement of the quarrel the deceased was so far the aggressor as not only to have knocked the prisoner down two or three times successively; the evidence which no doubt operate principally with the jury in retuning their ultimate verdict was, that the prisoner after suffering this treatment, sat quietly down for between seven and eight minutes, when suddenly starting up, he seized upon the deadly weapon and immediately commenced his murderous attack.  Dr. Maddox who took a post mortem examination of the body, expressed it as his opinion that the deceased died of a wound inflicted by a knife, which after passing under the eighth rib penetrated the liver, and occasioned much inward loss of blood; deponent also found upon the person of deceased another wound, extending across the muscles of the left arm and separating the flesh in such a manner as to leave the bone exposed.  The jury, after about an hour's consultation, returned a verdict of Wilful Murder against Wilks, who was forthwith committed on the coroner's warranty to take his trial for the capital offence.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 5 March 1844

MELANCHOLY CASE. - In another part of our paper will be found a notice of a Coroner's Inquest, which was held on Friday last, to enquire into the death of Mr. F. E. D. Browne, who was for several years connected with the press of the colony, both in this city and Launceston.  By this melancholy event, a large family of young and helpless children are utterly deprived of all earthly support, even to the daily sustenance necessary to maintain existence. [Appeal for subscriptions.]


   On Friday, an inquest was held at Mr. Mezger's Hotel, to enquire into the circumstances of the death of Mr. Francis Edward Douglas Browne, who had come to his death the previous day, by means of poison.

   The particulars are as follows :-  The deceased went to the Black Snake at Bridgewater about twelve o'clock on Tuesday, having walked from Hobart Town.  He said he was proceeding to New Norfolk, and enquired what time dinner would be ready.  Mr. Hedger's nephew told him he might have it when he thought proper; he then called for a glass of ale, said he felt tired, and would remain all night.  In the evening, about seven o'clock, Mr. Mezger saw the deceased in the parlour, and they had a glass of brandy and water together, and Mr. Mezger afterwards showed him to his bed-room.  On the following morning (Wednesday), deceased was called, but complained of being ill, and said he would like a few hours longer.  He was called several times during the day, and in the evening said he should not get up, had a glass of negus, and desired to be called very early the next morning, as he wished to get to New Norfolk.  He was accordingly called, but did not rise, and some time after, Mr. Hedger's nephew, hearing a groaning in the bed-room, looked in, and discovered that the deceased was incapable of speaking.  Mr. Mezger then went into the room, and perceiving that he was very ill, sent for the surgeon attached to the station at Bridgewater, who was from home.  A constable was then sent for, and on searching the clothes of the unfortunate deceased, three phials were found, one of which contained laudanum, a second tincture of digitalis (foxglove), and a third ammoniated tincture of Valerian, a strong and pungent stimulant.  There were also in the pockets of the deceased a purse, with some money, and some papers, some purporting to be bills of exchanger dawn upon Mr. R. W. Loane.  The deceased was then removed to the Colonial Hospital, in a conveyance obtained for the purpose, where the stomach pump was applied, and a quantity of laudanum ejected, but he died in about twenty minutes after reaching the Hospital; on examining the stomach sufficient laudanum and digitalis were there discovered to destroy life.  It appeared also that the deceased had ordered the fatal medicines of Mr. Roberts on Saturday, and called for them on the following (last) Monday, representing that he wanted them to make up his medicine chest, and Mr. Roberts, well knowing that Mr. Browne was intimately conversant with the nature of medicines, had not the slightest hesitation in supplying him.  It appeared also that a warrant had been issued for Mr. Browne's apprehension on a charge of forgery.  The jury returned a verdict to the effect that the deceased, on Thursday the 29th day of February, did kill and murder himself by taking a quantity of tincture of opium (laudanum) and digitalis.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 6 March 1844


   AN Inquest was held on Monday the 26th February, at the house of William Bates, situate at the Arms of the Creek, in the district of Westbury, before J. P. Jones, Esq., Coroner, an d a Jury of seven of the inhabitants of Westbury, on the view of the body of John Ryan, a probationer belonging to the Deloraine station, who came to his death under the following circumstances, as given in evidence.

   William Bates. - I am a settler residing at the Arms of the Creek; yesterday morning the 25th instant, about an hour after sunset I was alarmed by three men coming to the door and asking for tobacco, I told them to wait and I would come out.  A constable named Martin was stationed in the house, he opened the door and told them top stand, he pushed two of them in with his bayonet, the third ran away.  Martin called to him to stop or he would shoot him, he continued running and Martin fired, the man instantly fell.  Martin then told me to hand cuff the other two, and we went down to the body.  The man was 40 to 50 yards off before the constable fired.  We have been robbed four times lately by the same parties, who are I believer absconded from the Deloraine Probation station.  One of them was under arms on the other occasions, but did not appear on this.  I know the deceased to have been with the party on all the occasions that we have been robbed.  The shoes now taken off his feet are miner, he took them from me.  The deceased and the other men were all armed with large cudgels, but they did not offer any violence to me or the constable.

   Benjamin Henry Mence. -  I am an overseer of the Deloraine Probation station; I knew the deceased, he belonged to my class. His name is John Ryan, per Constant, and was under sentence of six months in chains when he absconded.  He absconded on the 12th of February.

   Joseph Terry. - I am a labourer, and reside at the house of William Bates; I was in bed yesterday morning, and about an hour after line missing] door and calling for tobacco.  I told them to wait a minute.  I did so because the constable was not ready.  The constable James Martin then put on his belt and fixed his bayonet.  He opened the door, told the men to stand, and pushed two of them in with his bayonet.  He said to them '"in you go;" the deceased ran away.  I heard Martin call to him and  tell him to stop or he would shoot him; the man continued running, and when he was about 40 or 50 yards off, Martin fired and the man fell; he desired William Bates to hand cuff the other two and he then went to the body.  He came back and said "he is dead, we must bring the body in."  I went down with Martin and the deceased was just breathing.  I heard Martin say to him "what a foolish man you were not to stop."  The man just said, "Oh! We brought the body up to the house.

   Cross-examined by the Coroner.

   The same men have been here four timed lately; they took away a quantity of flour, meat, tea, and sugar.

   E. S. Hall, Surgeon in charge of H. M. Hospital, Westbury.  I have examined the body on which this inquest is held, and have found a hole penetrating through the body from the lower part of the back on the left side to the left of the body.  The appearance is that of a ball passing through, which in its course has very much fractured the bone, a quantity of fluid and coagulated blood, has escaped into the cavity of the belly.  There were corresponding holes through his clothes.  I have no doubt that this was inflicted by a gun shot, which gun shot has been the cause of his death.  No sharp instrument could have done it.  It is possible the man might have lived an hour; but the wound was mortal.

   R. H. Sparks. - I am district constable at Westbury; in consequence of repeated robberies occurring at Mr. Terry's, I sent five constables to the Arms of the Creek.  I subsequently withdrew four, and left one, James Martin, in charge, with orders not to go outside the house.  I know Mr. Terry has been robbed four times, and I also know of another robbery having been committed by the party of which deceased was one.  No particular directions are given to the constables as to firing, they act by the instructions which are contained in the book given to them when they are sworn in.

   James Morris. - I am a constable in the Westbury police; on the 22nd inst., I received orders to proceed to the Arms of the Creek, as Mr. Terry had sustained serious injury from bushrangers.  I was instructed to use every exertion to capture them. On Sunday the 25th three men attacked the house about daylight; they had heavy bludgeons; they demanded tobacco.  I strapped on my belt and bayonet, went out and ordered them to stand.  The man Ryan came round and made a blow at me with his bludgeon; he said "come on my lads, I'm off."  I called to him to stand three times, but he still continued running.  When he was about 50 yards off, and I found that he would not stop, I fired and he fell.  I aimed at his thigh, but the piece carried a charge a little higher than I intended.

   The Jury retired, and after being absent nearly 2 hours, could not agree, five being of opinion Manslaughter, two Justifiable Homicide.  The Coroner therefore took the Majority.  A verdict of manslaughter against James Morris was returned, and he was fully committed for Trial.


Launceston Examiner, 6 March 1844

SUDDEN DEATH. - On Saturday evening, a woman known by the name of Moggy, residing in the neighbourhood of Patterson's Plains, dropped down dead; it is supposed from the effects of drinking a bottle of wine.

INQUEST. - We refrain from publishing the evidence in the case of Matthew Wilks, as he has been committed to take his trial for the murder of Jowett.


Launceston Advertiser, 7 March 1844

CORONER'DS INQUEST. - AN Inquest was held on Friday last, before Capt. Gardiner, at the Plough Inn, on the body of John Jowett, who was stabbed on the Sunday receding by his fellow servant Matthew Wilks; both the prisoner and the deceased were in the employ of Mr. Grant, of the Plough Inn.  The evidence shewed that Wilks, who is a ticket-of-leave holder, after having been to church muster, returned home rather the worse for liquor.  That being  directed by the deceased to wash up some articles in the kitchen, he did so, so carelessly as to break a glass or glasses, which caused the deceased to order him out of the kitchen; Wilks refused to go, and after some words a scuffle ensued, and Wilks was knocked down by Jowett - Wilks got up, his eye being considerably bruised, and remained near the deceased quiet for the space of some four or five minutes; the deceased during that time continuing to scold him sand to order him out of the kitchen; Wilks suddenly rushed to a dresser on which a large carving knife lay - seized it, and stabbed the deceased two or three times, once in the left breast and again in the left arm, which was cut to the bone.  Dr. Grant stated that he saw the deceased shortly after he had been stabbed, and was not of opinion at first, that the injuries received were of so serious a character, as upon a post mortem examination they proved.  Dr. Grant, upon examination after death found the wound in the chest to extend from under the eighth rib on the left side in a transverse direction to the right lobe of the liver, which it entered upwards of an inch; consequently the knife entered the body upwards of eight inches.  The man's death was occasioned by the haemorrhage consequent upon the wound.  And it is only wonderful that his death was not immediate from that cause.  The jury returned a verdict of wilful murder against the prisoner, Matthew Wilks, who was forthwith committed upon the Coroner's warrant.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 9 March 1844

INQUEST. - The body of George Ferrier a youth belonging to the big Indian who was drowned on Friday last was picked up on Wednesday morning.  An inquest was held on Thursday last, and s verdict of accidental death returned.


Launceston Examiner, 13 March 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the Black Horse, on Monday afternoon, upon the body of a man named Thomas Smith.  The inquest was held in consequence of a suspicion having been created that death was caused by the ignorance or neglect of a medical attendant.  It was, however, satisfactorily proved that the patient had received every requisite attention, and that he had been lingering for many months under the disease of which he died. - Verdict, Died by the visitation of God.

THE "RESOLUTION," - The cutter Resolution was raised on Monday, and has returned to the wharf.  The body of the unfortunate passenger was found in the forecastle.  An inquest was held this morning, and a verdict returned of accidental death.


Launceston Examiner, 16 March 1844

DEATH FROM DRINKING. - An inquest was held on Friday morning on the body of a woman named Maria Spencer.  Mr. Thomas deposed that deceased came to his house on Thursday, in company with two men, and called for drink; when in the act of lifting a glass off the counter, she turned wildly round, became insensible, and would have fallen but for the assistance of those near her.  Mr. Thomas caused her to be conveyed to the house of Samuel Downs, where she resided.  That was about twelve o'clock.  It was proved by other witnesses that deceased remained in fits, and was completely insensible until her death, which took place about four o'clock on the same day.  Dr. Maddox deposed that he was called to attend the deceased on Sunday, and found her labouring under epileptic fits; he administered the necessary medicines, and having observed that she had been drinking, cautioned her to abstain.  On Monday he visited her again, she had recovered from the fits, but was suffering under delirium, tremens. On Thursday he was again sent for and found deceased in fits; he prescribed and left the necessary instructions, intending to call again, but about four o'clock he received a message that she was dead.  Upon a post mortem examination he found signs of chronic inflammation of the membranes of the brain, and a softening of the right hemisphere; this was sufficient to cause death.  He had no doubt that death was accelerate by excessive drinking.  The jury returned a verdict to that effect.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 16 March 1844


WE beg to call the attention of the public to the particulars of an inquest inserted elsewhere, upon which we intend offering as few observations.  .  .  . 


   Without any further preface or apology, we shall now proceed to examine the merits of the case before us, and to inquire in what manner as certain medical official can justify his conduct, in requiring an inquest under such circumstances as were developed on evidence.   For the purpose of affording him every opportunity for exculpation, it will be necessary to recite ball the leading features of the case, so that the public, being in full possession of the facts, may better understand the merits of his defence - that is, in the event of his condescending to make any. 

   The case, then, appears to be simply this:  An individual, belonging to the laboring class, had for some years past been complaining of ill health.  A female, to whom he was married about five months ago, but who represented herself as having ben acquainted with him for nearly eighteen, testified to the fact of his having been ill about three weeks since with palpitations of the heart, and of her having procured for him the professional advice and attendance of Dr. De Dessel.  Under his treatment the health of the patient appeared rapidly to mend; and, in something less than a week, he imagined himself so far convalescent as to dispense with the doctor's visits, his wife informing the latter that a message would be despatched to him in the event of any change taking place for the worse.  The doctor, having advised his patient as to the best method of treating himself in order to guard against a second attack, takes his leave.  He learns, in about five days afterwards, that the man is dying, but is prevented from attendance upon him in consequence of as prior engagement.  The evidence of Martha Smith, the wife of the deceased, is as clear and explicit ads could possibly be wished; and it further appears that a most respectable inhabitant of the town, as well as a near neighbour, was present at the very moment when he expired.

   The deceased died on Saturday night, about nine o'clock; and, on the ensuing Sabbath, a constable named Ryan is despatched with the news to the hospital.  Mr. Smith, one of the district constables, has previously communicated with the wife of the deceased, and learned from her, that, only a few days prior to his death, he was under the medical care of Dr. de Dessel.  Some further inquiries, added to the expressed opinion of that gentleman himself, having convinced Mr. Smith that an inquest is wholly unnecessary, he instructs Brown to intimate as much to the doctor in charger at the hospital.  This is accordingly done; but the Colonial Hippocrates, affecting to take umbrage at the idea of any person presuming to dictate to him, tells the constable that, from the result of certain inquired which he has considered his duty to initiate, there can, in his opinion, exist no doubt about the propriety of calling an inquest.

   As soon as Mr. Smith becomes acquainted with his reply, her very properly makes his report to the coroner, stating, at the same timer, the point upon which the two doctors appeared to be at issue.  Upon this the coroner, no doubt calling to mind the incontrovertible axiom of

                 "Who shall decide when doctors disagree,"

Determined at once upon affording to each of them a public opportunity of supporting his own opinion, and appoints an inquest for the following day.  At the time and place nominated, the contending parties meet; and the evidence of Dr. de Dessel having been taken and generally corroborated by that of the other witnesses, the coroner inquires of the official gentleman whether he has any observations to make upon the subject previous to recording the verdict of the jury.  He is answered in the negative; and the coroner, having taken the verdict of Died by the visitation of God, proceeded to express his surprise at the circumstance of an inquest having been deemed necessary in a matter so extremely clear and consistent as the case but just recited.

   The official, upon this, endeavours to "back out," and seems dispose to impute the whole blame of the affair to any other than its true cause.  The evidence, however of both Smith and Brown prevents him from doing this; and at length, after having, in the most unequivocal manner, admitted the truth of Brown's statement respecting the words made use of by him upon the occasion, the gentleman, with an air of offended dignity, snatches up his hat and walks away!

   Now we think there can be nothing plainer than that throughout the whole of the affair, the conduct of the coroner has been such as to fully exonerate him from blame; he certainly could not have acted in a more prudential manner since the questions might for aught he knew of understood to the contrary, involve certain points of a nature strictly professional, upon which it would be desirable for the public to be enlightened. Finding, however, that the Government surgeon had nothing to offer against the strict propriety of Dr. de Dessel's practice, and that there was nothing whatever in the evidence at all calculated to support the expressed opinion of the former, concerning the necessity of an inquest, he very justly considered himself called upon to express his disapprobation of the whole proceeding.  This he would in probability have done in a still more pointed manner had he chanced to have heard a certain Government doctor publicly boasting that within the last twelve months he had received upwards of sixty pounds from the treasury chest as his share of the profits arising from coroner's inquests. 

   We think that the parties who listened to such a boast owe it as a duty both to themselves and society to make such conduct in a public officer the subject of a representation at head quarters, for if such a state if things be suffered to continue, two monstrous evils must, it is plain, become the natural result - the feelings of private individuals will be constantly in danger of immolation at the shrine of unprincipled rapacity, and the outward semblance of a zeal for the public service be made a convenient cloak for screening the deformity and odiousness of its exactions.

   We should not be doing full justice to the above singular case, did we not particularly direct the attention of our readers to the repugnance expressed by the deceased to Dr. de Dessel's proposal of getting admitted into the Colonial Hospital.  The same feeling is constantly evinced by prisoners of every description, and indeed, we have been credibly informed that upon more than one occasion some degree of force has actually been necessary in removing them to the Colonial Hospital., The observation of Smith upon the occasion was, "that he would rather die in the street," from which we are certainly led to conclude that there must have been something very dreadful in the idea which he had connected with the place.

   Before quitting the subject, it may be necessary to add in justice to Dr. de Dessel, that his attendance upon the deceased was entirely gratuitous, and uninfluenced by any other motives that those of pure humanity.


Launceston Examiner, 20 March 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Wednesday last on the body of a female named Margaret Richardson, who died at the colonial hospital.  The jury returned a verdict of died by the visitation of God.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 20 March 1844


   AN inquest was held on Friday last, at the Black Horse, in Wellington-street, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., coroner, on view of the body of a woman named Maria Spencer=, who died on the previous day, at her lodgings, next door to Mr. Thomas' public-house.  From the evidence taken, it appeared that deceased was an habitual drunkard, and that her death resulted from her intemperance. Dr. Maddox, Assistant Colonial Surgeon, stated that he was called in to attend the deceased on the Sunday previous to the Tuesday, on which day she died and found her labouring under epileptic fits, occasioned by drinking, from which practice he advised her to abstain.  He visited her again on Monday, when she was free from fits, but suffering under delirium tremens; the doctor was called in again about noon on Tuesday - deceased was then in fits; he prescribed for her, and intended to call again, but about 6 o'clock was informed that she was dead.  Dr. Maddox had taken a post mortem examination of the body, and was satisfied, from appearances, that death was occasioned by excessive drinking.

   There can be no question about the cause of the death of the unfortunate woman, nor the slightest doubt that Dr. Maddox administered the necessary and proper means on the first and subsequent visits; still we think that that gentleman should not have been called upon to take a post mortem examination of the body. - It is absurdity itself, to expect that a medical gentleman having attended a patient during life, who should discover on opening the body after death that he had mistaken the cause of sickness, and had, perhaps, treated it erroneously - likely even to occasion death - would admit the fact before a Coroner's jury; the truth could not be expected from any person knowing that his admission of error would reflect discredit on his professional knowledge.  .  .  . 


Courier (Hobart), 22 March 1844

ACCIDENT. - William Davis, of the Black Brush, a very old colonist, lost his life on Tuesday night, by being run down by the horses of Mr. Edward Crouch, of New Town, who was hastening home, it being very dark at the time.  Drs. Rowe and Bright were in instant attendance, but all temporal relief was unavailing.    An inquest was held on the following day, when a verdict of accidental death was pronounced.  We understand that Mr. Crouch has done all that lies in his power to alleviate the loss of the surviving widow.


Launceston Examiner, 3 April 1844

ACCIDENTAL DEATH. - An inquest was held on Tuesday morning, on the body of as private of the 96th.  It appeared by evidence that deceased fell down a ladder at the barracks, and sustained severe injuries at the back of the neck and head, which caused his death.  Verdict accordingly.

INQUEST.  An Inquest was held on Monday afternoon, at the Prince of Wales Inn, before Captain Gardiner, on the body of Mary Ann Lee, a young woman about twenty years of age, who died at the female factory.  It was satisfactorily proved that death resulted from natural causes, and a verdict to that effect was returned.


 Launceston Examiner, 10April 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Monday, on the body of an infant prematurely born, at the female factory.  The jury returned a verdict of died by the visitation of God.


Trial of Matthew Wilks for the wilful murder of John Jowett. .  .  . 

   Jas. Grant, Esq., surgeon. - I was called to attend deceased at Mr. Grant's; there was a wound on the left side, about three inches below the breast, an inch and a half wide; a wound on the left arm, four inches long, which had cut through the muscle to the bone, and another on the left shoulder; he was bleeding profusely; deceased expired on the 29th February; the wound on the left arm was the cause of death, the other wounds were not mortal, and did not tend to prisoner's death; a stab from such a knife as this might have produced the wound.

   Witness made no defence.

   His honor remarked to the attorney-general that he thought the case only amounted to manslaughter, as the prisoner received a provocation from the deceased.  .  .  . 

   The jury found the prisoner guilty of manslaughter.  His honor remanded the prisoner,  .  .  . 

Matthew Wilks was called up for judgment and sentenced to transportation for life.


Launceston Examiner, 27 April 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held yesterday on the body of a child that died in the female factory and a verdict returned of died by the visitation of God.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 1 May 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Monday, at the residence of Mr. Gough, Patterson's Plains, by Arthur Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, and a respectable jury, on the body of Charles Shrimpton, a third class probation pass holder, who was unfortunately drowned the day previous, at Clarke's Ford.  It appeared he went into the river, to show two other men the proper crossing place, and a fresh being down, he lost his footing, and was swept away.  Verdict Accidentally Drowned.


Launceston Advertiser, 2 May 1844

CORONERS INQUEST. - On Friday afternoon, an inquest was held at the Prince of Wales Inn, in this town, on the body of an infant, named Henry Shaw, aged 11 months, which had died the day previous, at the Female House of Correction; from the evidence it appeared the deceased had received every attention and kindness, that it had been weakly from its birth, and its death arose from natural causes.  Verdict - died by the visitation of God.


Launceston Examiner, 8 May 1844

ACCIDENTAL DEATH. - A man was unfortunately burnt to death at George Town a few days since.  The manner in which the accident occurred is not probably known; but the inquest returned a verdict if accidental death.

DEATH FROM SCALDING. - An inquest was held on Tuesday at Mr. Pitcher's, on the Westbury road, upon the body of a child that met with its death from being accidentally scalded with water, when a verdict was returned accordingly.


Launceston Advertiser, 9 May 1844

   On Monday morning last a child while playing in a paddock in Canning-street, had its skull fractured by a kick from a horse that was grazing therein - the child lies in hospital in a hopeless condition.

   On Tuesday evening last, an inquest was held at the Rising Sun, Muddy Plains, before A. Gardiner, Esq., on the body of a child named Arthur Clarke, five years old, who was severely scalded on Saturday.  Verdict, accidental death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 11 May 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. -  AN Inquest was held on Tuesday last, at the Rising Sun Inn, Muddy Plains, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, and a respectable jury, on the body of Arthur Clarke, aged 5 years and 6 months.  From the evidence of a man and woman named Waddell, it appeared that the mother of the deceased went into Launceston, on Saturday evening, and left him in charge of witnesses; a large tin saucepan was on the fire, and it fell off, and deceased was sitting in front of it; the injuries received were the cause of his death. Waddell and his wife rendered every assistance that lay in their power, but neglected to obtain medical attendance; the poor child lingered in great agony till half-past seven o'clock on Monday morning, when death put an end to his suffering.  Dr. Benson certified that the deceased came to his death from injuries received from boiling water; all the lower part of belly, thighs, and legs, were much injured. The jury returned a verdict of Accidentally scalded to death.

CAUTION TO PARENTS. - On Monday morning last some children were playing in a paddock, near Canning-0street, in this town, where horses were grazing.  One of the children approached one of the animals, and received a severe kick in the head.  The child was carried by its playmates to its parents, who instantly procured medical assistance, which unhappily will prove unavailing, the skull being found to be severely fractured. No hopes are entertained of the child's recovery.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 21 May 1844

MELANCHOLY AND FATAL ACCIDENT. - As the schooner Ranger, belonging to Mr. George Lewis, was proceeding up the river on her return home from Hobart Town, on Friday afternoon, she was capsized by a sudden squall off the Government garden, and was seen to go down about three o'clock p.m.; her crew consisting of the following men were drowned - namely, Jeremiah Cadogan, Mr. Leslie's overseer, and three ticket-of-leave men, named, Joseph Bolton, William Pye, and George Denning. On Mr. Lewis's reporting the lamentable occurrence at the Police Office, Mr. Price immediately proceeded in person to the spot where the vessel was seen to go down, and having discovered her, a buoy was fixed to her and the party returned.  Captain Moriarty has kindly promised such aid as he has at command to raise the vessel, as has also Mr. Cotterell, the Superintendent of the Anson prison-hulk, so that there is every probability of the schooner being raised. There is a report this morning (Monday), that the body of one of the unfortunate men has been recovered, in which case the Inquest may open some further particulars; pending that inquiry, therefore, we shall refrain from publishing any of the remarks which have reached us relative to the conduct of the unfortunate men in Hobart Town, previous to their embarkation.


Launceston Examiner, 29 May 1844

DEATH FROM SCALDING. - On Wednesday last a child about four years of age, belonging to a man named Brown., a boat-builder, residing on the west bank of the Tamar, was accidentally scalded to death by the upsetting of a boiler of water.  The sufferer lingered to two or three days, but the injuries received were beyond medical care.

 INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Monday at the Bricklayers' Arms, corner of George and York-streets. Upon the body of a child named William Thompson, between two and three years of age, who received a kick from a horse about three weeks since.  Dr. Pugh attended deceased, and proved that death resulted from the injury sustained by the accident.  A verdict was returned accordingly.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 29 May 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Monday afternoon at Mr. Bartlett's Inn, George-street, before A. Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a child named William Thompson, aged two years and a half, who had come by his death from a kick it received three months since from a horse while playing in a paddock.  Evidence of Dr. Pugh went to show that he was called upon to attend the deceased on the 5h instant; he found a large portion of the skull depressed; and a considerable part of the brain expressed upon the surface.  He continued to attend the deceased till the 25th, when death put a period to his sufferings.  Death was caused by the extensive laceration of the brain, produced by a kick of a horse.  Thomas Edwards proved finding the deceased laying with his face on the ground, about three or four yards from a horse, which was grazing in a paddock.  Witness picked up the deceased, who was covered with blood and crying; deceased said that the nasty horse had kicked him.  The body this day viewed by the jury is the same.  Verdict - Accidental death.


Launceston Examiner, 5 June 1844

SUDDEN DEATH. - An inquest was held before Captain Gardiner, at the Black Horse, on Monday afternoon, upon the body of a man named Samuel Godson, who dropped down dead in Elizabeth-street, on that morning.  Mr. William Sanderson, chemist, deposed, that about half-past eight o'clock in the morning he saw the deceased near his shop, in Elizabeth-street, and spoke to him; deceased said he was indebted to witness  two shillings for a draught, procured at his shop by Dr. de Dessel, which he paid and said he felt better, but was not quite well; he had proceeded about three yards, when he suddenly turned round and fell; witness endeavoured to bleed him, and administered stimulants, but life was extinct.  Dr. Maddox held a post mortem examination of the body, and found that death was occasioned by the bursting of a blood vessel on the brain.  The jury returned a verdict of died by the visitation of God.


Launceston Advertiser, 7 June 1844

FRIGHTFUL DEATH, - CORONER'S INQUEST. - An Inquest was held on Friday, at the Rising Sun Inn, Muddy Plains, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., and a most respectable jury, on the body of a fine youth, named Daniel Thorn, son of Mr. Joseph Thorn, publican, of Charles street, aged ten years, who came to his death under the most distressing circumstances.  From the evidence of William Waterman, and master Charles Thorn, brother top the deceased, it appeared that on Thursday, the deceased was sitting on the shaft of a cart, in which some gravel was bring removed from the back of Mr. Pitcher's house, when in consequence of the wheel coming in contact with a rut in the road, deceased was jolted off, and the wheel went over the neck of the deceased.  Witness Waterman had cautioned the deceased to be careful, as he persisted in riding as well as the brother; deceased never moved, her must have died instantaneously.  Dr. Porter proved that the cause of death was from injury of the brain, occasioned by heavy pressure, and that deceased must have expired immediately.  The jury returned a verdict of accidental death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 8 June 1844

FOUND DROWNED. - The body of a soldier named Gough, who has been missing for a considerable time, and was supposed to have deserted, was found this morning in the river, near the bar.  An inquest was held, and the jury returned a verdict of Found drowned.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 12 June 1844

SUDDEN DEATH. - On Sunday evening Eliza Scott, a probation servant on wages, about 40 years of age, living with Mr. M'Loughlin, cabinet maker, Argyle-street, suddenly fell from the chair on which she was sitting and expired.  Mr. M'Loughlin had gone into the kitchen to look after his assigned servants, who he found in conversation; the woman was then quite cheerful, and in a few moments a corpse.  She had only been about three weeks in Mr. M'Loughlin's service, and was a sober industrious servant.  An inquest was held before John Price, Esq., coroner, yesterday, at Mezger's Hotel, and a verdict returned of Died by the visitation of God.


Launceston Examiner, 12 June 1844

INQUESTS. - An inquest was held at Mr. Carpenter's, on the 7th instant, before Capt. Gardiner, on the body of a person named William Clark, who resided in the street adjoining Lawrence's paddock.  It was proved by William Smith, that deceased had been suffering for a long timer; about six weeks ago he came to witness;' house, and had remained there ever since.  On the morning of the 6th, he was taken worse and Dr. Maddox was sent for. Deceased expired about half-past ten on the following morning.  He was always averse to any medical gentleman being called in, and objected to go to the hospital.  Dr. Maddox found deceased in a dying state, lying on the floor with a rag or two for covering.  He stated himself to be a poor man and relying entirely upon charity for support.  Upon a post mortem examination, witness discovered that death was occasioned by inflammation of the lungs. - Verdict, died by the visitation of God.

  Another inquest was held the same day before Captain Gardiner at Mr. Brand's on the body of Peter Gough, a private of the 96th regiment.

  William Hope deposed to having seen deceased within the last ten or eleven days; he was dressed in the regulation clothes, but was at that time absent without leave.  Could not recognise the body, but saw the name Peter Gough, written inside the trowsers.

   Edward Ford, sergeant major, deposed that deceased had been absent since the 12th May.  The body was so disfigured that witness could not recognise it but the uniform was that of the 96th regiment.

   J, Bird, waterman, found the body on the morning of the 7th, about a quarter of a mile from the bar on the east side of the river and immediately gave information to the police.

   Dr. Lucas, from the state of decomposition supposed the body had been in the water about a fortnight.  He was unable to form an opinion as to the cause of death, but observing no marks of violence, supposed it might have been occasioned by suffocation from drowning. - A verdict was returned of found drowned.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 22 June 1844

MURDER. - On Friday evening, s report reached town that suspicion of a most barbarous murder having been perpetrated somewhere in the vicinity of Ben Lomond, was very rife in that neighbourhood; the particulars of this melancholy occurrence is as far as we are at present enabled to ascertain them, seem to be as follows:-

   About the middle of the week a horse and cart were discovered in the bush, at a considerable distance from any human abode; the cart was found fast jammed between two rocks, from which no effort of the poor animal attached to it had been able to disengage it, and from the famished appearance of the horse, it would appear to have remained in the same position for three or four days.  It proved to be the property of a haulier named Careless, (formerly a constable in the town) and at some distance from the spot where the horse and cart were discovered, a hat much beat and disfigured was also found. The boxes in the cart had been broken open and the contents carried away.  Search was made in all directions for the body, but hitherto without effect.  The Morven police e however on the alert, and sincerely do we hope that Providence may accord their endeavours in bringing to light the perpetrators of a murder, which there is little reason to doubt has been most barbarously committed.  Since the above was written, the body has been found murdered - a musket ball having passed through the heart and the head short away.  Further particulars will be elicited at the inquest.


Launceston Examiner, 26 June 1844

FATAL EFFECTS OF INTOXICATION.  - A coroner's inquest was held at Campbell Town on Monday last, on the body of John Davis, a shoe-maker, who died on the previous morning from the effects of burns.  It appeared in evidence that the deceased was in a state of intoxication on Thursday, at noon, and on returning to his house, and not being able to enter, his wife being out, he went to the house of a neighbour about one hundred yards distant, and being left alone a short time on a chair, he by some means set fire to his clothes, and was so dreadfully burnt, that he sunk under the injuries received.  The verdict returned was, died from the effect of burns received while in a state of intoxication, - Communicated.

THE LATE INHUMAN MURDER. - A correspondent has furnished us with the following particulars relative to the murder of Miles Careless:- A most barbarous and cruel murder was perpetrated upon the body of a licensed hawker named Miles Careless, formerly a constable in this town, whose horse and cart were discovered on Captain Allison's sheep run, by a man named John Stratton, (shepherd  to that gentleman,) on Tuesday, the 18th June, between two and three o'clock in the afternoon.  Stratton was first attracted to the spot by the barking of his dog, and on descending a gully to ascertain the cause, there found the horse and cart in question, stuck fast between two forked trees.  From the appearance of the horse (which was almost starved to death) the animal must have been in that position seven or eight days; Stratton was unable to extricate the cart by himself, and procured the assistance of a man named Watson, who accompanied him to the Evandale police-office, where the horse and cart remain.  Immediately on the horse and cart arriving, three constables, with Stratton and Watson, were dispatched to the place where the horse and cart were discovered, and continued to search for Careless the remainder of that day, but without success.  On Thursday, the 20th June, the constables, with Stratton, resumed their search, and between three and four o'clock were about proceeding to a hut to procure some refreshment, when the shepherd said, "I am sure the body must be in the forest," and took a contrary direction to that intended by the constables.  They had not proceeded far when the dog gave the alarm, and found the body of Miles Careless, in a most shocking state.  The entire flesh was eaten off the face, and some small animals had made an entrance just above the stomach, and took a portion of the entrails out; altogether the spectacle was most appalling.  On examining the body twelve buck shot were found in the back part of the left ear, a dreadful wound on the top of the head, evidently inflicted with the butt end of a gun, and another gash on the back of the skull. 

   Careless had the character of a resolute, determined man, and would not suffer himself to be robbed without offering resistance.  An inquest was commenced on Saturday, but nothing very particular transpired. The shepherd Stratton, has been con fined since Saturday, and many think he knows something about the dreadful affair.  The chief constable, with two others, went to York Park Yesterday (Sunday) to arrest two men who visited a hut adjacent to the place where the murder was committed, about that time.

   Since writing the above, the inquest has been concluded, which did not terminate until half-past six on Monday evening, when a verdict was returned of Wilful Murder against some person or persons unknown.

  The shepherd, Stratton, and two men, named Cobbley and Ross, have been committed to gaol on suspicion.


Launceston Examiner, 28 June 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. - On Monday last a Coroner's Inquest was held at Mr. Britton Jones's Public-house, Franklin Village, before R. Wales, Esq., Coroner, on the body of a ticket-of-leave man, named John Banks, who was found dead in his bed the previous morning.  On the evidence of Dr. Weymouth, the jury returned a verdict of Died by the bursting of a blood-vessel on the brain.  One of the witnesses proved thr deceased had been a hard drinker.

MURDER. - [The Careless Murder.] - Careless was last seen alive for the last time about four miles from where the body was found on the Saturday previous.  Five men have been apprehended on suspicion of having committee the horrible murder.


Launceston Examiner, 29 June 1844

THE LATE MURDER. - We have a full report of the Inquest on the body of the unfortunate man Careless.  Facts have been elicited sufficient to attach the strongest suspicion to the parties accused; and the police are actively engaged in endeavouring to complete the chain of evidence necessary for conviction.  The opinion of the doctor was, that the shot received on the skull of the deceased was fired by some person underneath him, which strengthened the supposition that he died in attempting to defend himself.


Launceston Examiner, 3 July 1844


   The following is a condensed report of the evidence taken upon view of the body of Miles Carless, found murdered near York Park:-

   The first witness called was constable Robert  Pestel, who deposed to having been sent in search of the body of Miles Careless; we commenced searching for the body on Thursday, the 20th June; we went with Mr. Allison's shepherd, John Stratton; he took us to the spot where he said he found the horse and cart; we there saw two or three wheelbarrows of horse-dung; I concluded the horse had been standing there for some days; we then traced the cart back to the main road, where it had turned off to go into the bush; the  distance from the place where the horse was, to the road, is about a mile and a quarter, as also Charles Jacobs; hut; Charles Jacobs, I understand, is overseer for Captain Allison; residence is eighteen miles from Evandale an d three miles from York Park; on the track we found a handkerchief and a bundle of string; the handkerchief was picked up by constable Ball; he said he lent it to Careless, or he might have taken out from his place by mistake, he being in the habit of stopping at his (Ball's) hut when stationed at Cleggin; we then commenced searching about art of a run belonging to Mr. Allison for the body; John Stratton is shepherd on that run; we discovered the body between three and four o'clock in the afternoon, about three hundred and fifty yards from the road, and about a quarter of a mile from the place where the cart was; the shepherd, (John Stratton,) when we were going to Jacobs' to get some refreshment, stated "that it was his opinion the body was in the forest," and said so several times during the day; not being acquainted with the forest, we told him to go non to Jacobs' place; he then took us through the forest; when we got upon the rise of as hill, where there was a cluster of trees, constable Ball called out "O my God, there he lays;" this was on Thursday afternoon; he left Evandale on this day fortnight, the [8th] June; the body was disfigured about the face, and appeared to be eaten by vermin; it appeared as if the pockets had been rifled; about ten yards from his foot we discovered this nacc0ount book; there appears as if a ball had passed through it; the body was evidently removed from the place where it was shot; we were all alarmed when we discovered the body, but the shepherd appeared very much so; Stratton's dog was at the body when Ball cried out "it was lying there;" Stratton said, this would get him his ticket, her had found the cart, and now he had found the body; after we found the body Stratton's manner was different to what it was before we discovered it.

   Constable Ball corroborated the statement of Pestel, and fully and satisfactorily accounted for the manner in which Careless came in possession of the handkerchief.

   The next witness, Stratton, being in custody on suspicion, we give his statement at length:-

     John Stratton - Am an assigned servant to Captain Allison, on the Macquarie river; on my way home my dog barked, I  went down the gully to see what the dog was barking at, and there discovered a horse and cart; the horse appeared in a dreadful state, almost starved, and a great quantity of dung under him; the cart  could not be moved by the horse either backward or forward; I then went to me overseer and told him the horse was struck fast to the log; there was some oats in the cart, I took them out and gave them to the horse before I went to Jacobs'; there was a box in the cart, it was open; after I informed the overseer he told me John Watson would go with me and assist in releasing the horse and cart; there was an old hat in the cart; Watson came with me, and we broke the cart before we could disengage it; to took the horse and cart to Evandale; I was alone on the run when I discovered the horse and cart; on Tuesday fortnight I took my sheep off the run where the horse and cart were found; I remember this day fortnight; there was no person at my place on that day; did not expect any person there; I saw Thomas Jones on Tuesday fortnight, he is a hawker; I was then gathering my sheep; Jones said, on his return, if he was benighted he would give me a call; I told him to do so; Jones said he might be back on Saturday, but could not say; on this day fortnight I went round my run; was up at Jacobs' this day fortnight; was not on the run when I found the horse and cart that day; I took a double-barrelled gun from Jacobs; last Wednesday week; I took the gun to Mr. Bostock's, where it remains at present; left it at Mr. Bostock's the same day as I took it from Jacobs; the gun is broken; believe one barrel is good; gave the gun to Mr. Bostock's cook; I got the gun in the morning, and left it at Mr. Bostock's about twelve the same day; on that day I asked my master for some powder and shot, and he promised to send me some as soon as possible; have not had any powder or shot in my possession since I came into the service of Captain Alison; I led the constables to Mr. Jacobs'; the body was distant from the cart three or four hundred yards; I had not a gun with me when I went to Jacobs'; I saw Jones on Tuesday; returned to Jacobs;' about half an hour before sundown; I never had either powder or shot inn my possession since I came to the place; a fortnight this day, when I went home there were two men in my hut, James Cobbley and a butcher; they stopped there all night; they had no pieces or fire-arms that I could see; they told me they had been doing a job at Mr. Wild's; never knew them to be at my hut before; never saw either of the men before, except Cobbley, who live with me about four years ago; we were then assigned servants on the Macquarie; they had a kangaroo rug each; John M'Caul and his son were at my place on Tuesday week last; do not recollect any person being at my place but those two men I mentioned; on last Wednesday fortnight there were three shepherds at my hut, Mr. Wild's, Mr. Evans', and Mr. Bostock's; they got in at the window; the door was still locked; did not give them anything to eat; they stopped all night, and lay on the floor.

   William James Huxtable, Esq. - I am a medical surgeon, and reside at Evandale; have performed a post mortem examination on the body now lying in the gaol yard; I found behind the left ear a shot hole, and in that hole found twelve shot; on the top of the head I found a fracture, the skull was extensively fractured below, and all the bones on the left side of the face were completely smashed; on the skin of the heads I found a very extensive bruise, I also found a fracture on the back part of the skull, immediately where the shot was extracted; either of these fractures were sufficient of themselves to cause death; I think the person was underneath who fired the shot; the fracture on the back of the skull must have been caused by the shot.


   Further statement of John Stratton. - The gun now produced is the same that I took from Mr. Jacobs; I think it was on the Wednesday; I went to Mr. Bostock's with a letter for my master, and left the gun on that day at Mr. Bostock's, but did not lend it to any person; on the Wednesday or Thursday previous to my finding Cobbley and the butcher in my hut, they had been assisting me to dress my sheep' John M'Caul and his son were with me on that day; I never told any person that Cobbley and the butcher stopped with me three or four days, they went away t6he same day as John M'Caul did; they had no fire-arms, they had a rug each; Cobbley and the butcher came from Mr. Bostock's on the day that I found them in my hut; I asked them to assist me in dressing my sheep; Boco was not at my place on the Saturday that Cobbley and the butcher were there; I cannot account how the hair came upon the lock of the gun; was inside my hut when the butcher and Cobbley came, they bade me good morning; I answered good morning, you are the very men I want to see; they stopped with me all that day, and got their meals with me; the butcher is quite a stranger to me.

   [The examination of this witness continued for some time, principally relating to the degree of intimacy of acquaintance existing between him and the parties mentioned.]

   Mary Ann Jacobs - The gun now produces resembles the  gun that was in my husband's house; it belonged to Captain Allison; it was taken away about last Saturday week by Stratton, for the purpose, as he stated, of getting it repaired; never knew the man Stratton to have a gun in his possession; Cobbley and the butcher never stopped all night at my husband's place; On Saturday last Stratton came to my husband's house about even o'clock in the evening, not in company with any one; am positive that I never saw Cobbley and the butcher with Stratton; I reside half a mile from Stratton's hut; was cooking dinner when Stratton gave information about finding a horse and cart; Stratton said to my husband, "as you are my principal overseer, I came to inform you of the same."

   Charles Jacobs  I know the double-barrelled gun now produced, it is the property of Mr. Allison; it has been some time in my house; did not see any person remove it; first missed the gun on yesterday week; I then asked my wife if Flareup (Stratton) had taken it, she said yes; I saw Flareup and asked him if he had removed the gun; he said he had taken it for the purpose of getting it repaired, by order of his master; never saw any powder or shot with Flareup; Flareup has been on Mr. Allison's run since last March; never knew him to have a gun; between ten and three o'clock I went to fetch a cask of water, and at Mr. Bostock's I saw the butcher and Flareup; saw a man named Cobbley on the day the hawker's cart was found; was never asked by any person to let a box remain in my house; have got plenty of ammunition in my house; the shot now produced is about the size I have at present; I bartered some shot to a man named Fisher about five weeks ago; never gave Flareup either powder or shot.

   Joseph Capeat - I know James Cobbley and William Ross, they are in no stated employment, but have been stopping with me about ten days; they brought rations with them from Launceston; cannot say they have been more than fourteen days; never knew them to be away during the night; never saw them with any fire-arms; never saw a gun with Stratton, Cobbley, or Ross; they have rugs, and sleep by themselves.

   Thomas Rilkett deposed that Cobbley and Ross had been living at his hut since Monday or Tuesday week; witness had conversation with them and both admitted having been at Flareup's hut; the rest of his evidence was not very material.

   James Cobbley stated that on Saturday fortnight he and Ross slept in Flareup's hut, and had been stopping there about nine days; Flareup never told witness he had found a horse and cart; I saw him with bit about three or four o'clock in the afternoon; did not know where it was found; had not fired a gun off for eight years.

   William Ross stated that he had been out of employment for five weeks; left Launceston with Cobbley on Friday; was not on the road on Saturday fortnight; witness and Cobbley went to bed between eight and nine o'clock; Flareup came home about an hour and a half after them; he said he had been lost in the bush.

   The coroner, Robert Wales, Esq., then went through the evidence, pointing out the remarkable features in the case, after which the jury retired for about twenty minutes, but could not come to a decision.  It was suggested by the foreman (Mr. Peck) that it would be requisite for the man Stratton to be again examined, in consequence of the evidence of last witness.  Some conversation then took place between Mr. Wales and the foreman, which ended by the further examination of Stratton.

   Verdict -Wilful Murder against some person or persons unknown.

   The above comprises the substance of the evidence against the parties accused, but necessarily so condensed that many details are omitted.  The witnesses contradicted each other in several particulars, which throws doubt upon particulars of their testimony.


Launceston Advertiser, 5 July 1844

SUDDEN DEATH. - A man named James Hersey, was yesterday on his way to town from the White Hills, in order to [be] admitted into the Colonial Hospital, suddenly expired, as the cart in which he was being conveyed, came down the Sandhill  The poor man had been for some time ill.  An Inquest will be held this afternoon at Mr. Monaghan's.

THE RECENT MURDER. - It appears that additional evidence has been adduced against the man who discovered the body of Miles Careless.  A piece of Stratton's tinder-box, together with a piece of his gaiter, were discovered a few yards from the spot where the body lay after its barbarous massacre.

SUDDEN DEATH. - A sailor belonging to the brig Dawsons, was taken suddenly ill about three o'clock on Wednesday afternoon, and died before seven the same evening.  Reports were in circulation that the man had been poisoned; a coroner's inquest sat upon the body, but from the evidence gone into it appears there were no grounds for that report. Verdict - died by the visitation of God.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 6 July 1844


   On Tuesday last, an inquest was held at the house of Mr. George Lukin, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., touching the death of Wm. Baker, steward of the brig Dawsons.  From the evidence, it appeared that the deceased had lately been laboring under extreme depression of spirits, in consequence of his brother's departure from Sydney, whither he had come for the purpose (if possible) of persuading the deceased to return home.  The family of deceased were of the highest respectability, his father being a Lieutenant in the Royal Navy.  His refusal to return home with his brother arose out of a feeling of shame, in consequence of his having run away from the vessel on board of which he was apprenticed.

   The master of the Dawsons, Mr. William Carder, stated that the deceased had, about five days ago, complained of pains all over his limbs, and that he found himself incompetent to the performance of his duty for the whole of that time.  On Wednesday morning he again reported himself sick, and went to bed.  Deponent soon afterwards went on shore for the purpose of procuring medical assistance.  On his return, in company with Dr. Porter, deceased was much worse, and expired in the evening.  His last request to witness was, that he would take care of his clothes.

   Dr. Porter, having taken a post mortem examination of the body, stated that, upon opening the chest, he found that inflammation of the heart had in all probability occasioned the death of the deceased.  There was also a polypi, of a malicious character, extending throughout the region of the stomach; and considerable effusion of water into the pericardium had likewise taken place.  When called upon to attend the deceased, he appeared to be labouring under the effects of a strong narcotic; and he had since been infor4mnerb that deceased obtained access to the captain's medicine-chest during his absence on shore and had probably swallowed opium. The stomach, however, contained no indication of the kind; but it might, perhaps, be necessary to examine the brain.

The Coroner remarked, that a very general report having gone forth that the deceased had poisoned himself, he should deem it expedient to adjourn the inquest until the following day, when Dr. Porter would be assisted by the presence of another medical gentleman.

 The inquest was accordingly adjourned.

On the adjournment of the inquest Captain Gardiner remarked, that it was impossible for him to avoid expressing his surprise at the negligence evinced by the Chief Constable in the department of his duty. He (the worthy Coroner) was not apprised in any way of the circumstance until to-day, although, as just stated, the deceased expired at an early hour the preceding evening; and besides this, it actually appeared that a District Constable could no longer be spared to attend upon a coroner's inquest.  At the time when Mr. Byron held office, he made it a rule to attend personally upon inquests, in all cases wherein such a proceeding could be rendered practicable.  Mr. Midgeley, on the contrary, appeared to be altogether above his duty; and therefore he (the Coroner) would take care to report his conduct in the proper quarter.

   On the following day, Drs. Porter, Grant, and Benson re-examined the body of deceased; they found nothing to throw any light upon the subject.

   Dr. Porter deposed that he had further examined the body, and particularly the head; that he had found considerable congestion of the brain and its membranes, and a rather greater effusion of water than usual.  He found nothing to change his opinion, that deceased died of disease of the heart and congestion of the brain.

   Dr. Grant corroborated the evidence of the last witness, from what he could judge there was no appearance of poison.  The congestion of the brain was sufficient to cause death, but what was the cause of the congestion he could not say.

   The Jury immediately returned a verdict - Died by the visitation of God. [See also Launceston Examiner, 6 July.]

Another inquest was held at the Britannia Inn, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, on the body of James Hersey, who died while being conveyed to the Hospital.

   Thomas Barker, the master of the deceased, was called, who deposed that he had been in his service for the last 16 months; that about Christmas last he complained of having a severe cold, which settled in his stomach; about this time he left off work, and has since then been gradually sinking.  Dr. Huxtable attended him for the last three weeks.  The deceased was brought into town on Tuesday; the witness left the cart on the Sandhill to speak to Dr. Benson to get him into the Hospital; he could not find him, but succeeded in finding Dr. Maddox, and came to the Hospital with him; he found the cart standing by the gate, but the man was dead.

   Robert Hedley drive the cart in with the deceased; he was very weak, and had attempted to come into town before, but was not strong enough; it being fine on Thursday morning, he determined to come in, if he died upon the road.  The witness was forced to stop the cart several times upon the road, to give deceased relief; when he got to the Sir George Arthur Inn, he stopped for some time; deceased told him her was dying; he then passed slowly on, and stopping a short time after, he found the man was dead.  He heard no cry or moan from the deceased after leaving the Sir George Arthur until he feared him dead; he had always stopped when he heard him complain.

   Dr. Huxtable said he had attended the deceased; he was suffering from dropsy; he never gave him any hope of recovery.

   The Jury returned a verdict of - Died by the visitation of God.


Launceston Examiner, 10 July 1844

INQUEST. - On Monday an inquest was held at the Elephant and Castle, before Captain Gardiner, on view of the body of a child about eight weeks old.  It appeared by the evidence of the father and mother, Mr. & Mrs. Price, residing in Wellington-street, that the child was found dead in the bed about half-past seven o'clock in the morning.  From certain indications Dr. Maddox was induced to believe death resulted from convulsions, but it would be difficult to determine with certai9ntythe precise cause, as the child might have died from having been overlaid and suffocated.  The jury returned a verdict of found dead; and added, they were inclined to believe from the evidence that the child died from convulsions.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 10 July 1844

DROWNING. - On Thursday last a man employed in the Government boat at Kangaroo Point, while attempting to fix the rudder, over-reached himself, fell over board, and was drowned.  Strange to say, he never appeared at the surface, having probably, risen under the boat and then been stunned by the blow. - H. T. Adviser.


Launceston Examiner, 17 July 1844

Inquest. - An Inquest was held at the Prince of Wales hotel on Tuesday, upon view of the body of an infant eight weeks old, found dead in its bed that morning.  The mother is a ticket-of-leave woman, and the father, named Jones, earns his livelihood by selling fish about town.  The substance of the evidence of the parents went to prove that the deceased had been indisposed for some time; that on Monday night, as usual, it slept in the same bed with them, and about seven o'clock in the morning was discovered to be dead. Dr. Maddox deposed that the appearances of the child indicated convulsions; but he could not positively determine the cause of death by external examination.  The jury returned a verdict of Found dead, but whether from natural causes or form being overlaid they could not determine.  It will be remembered that a precisely similar case occurred a few days since.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 17 July 1844

INQUEST. -  Yesterday an inquest was held before A. Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, at Mr. Henshaw's, The Prince of Wales, on the body of a male child, four months old, the son of John and Mary Jones, who was found dead in bed.  Mary Jones deposed, that she was mother of the deceased child, and he was quite well yesterday when she went to bed, about 10 o'clock.  The deceased and her husband slept in the same bed with her; when she got up in the morning she took her child to wrap him up warm, and found him quite dead and black in the face.  Neither she nor her husband had been drinking; they were quite sober when they went to bed.  Dr. Maddox deposed, that he was called in this morning to deceased, and found him quite dead; there was a slight warmth in the body, and a considerable lividity of the head and left side of the face; he found no external marks of violence; he could not say whether the child died of convulsions, or was overlaid; he could not satisfy the jury further as to the cause of death if he had a post mortem examination of the body.  John Jones, father of the deceased, corroborated the evidence of his wife; he went to bed after his wife, having been to the Theatre; he had not been drinking.  The jury returned a verdict of Found Dead, and that there was no evidence to say by what means the deceased met his death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 3 August 1844

INQUEST ON A TRAVELLER. - We understand that a person died suddenly last week in the vicinity of the estate of Mr. Thomas Field, to the westward, and that an inquest was accordingly held on the body.  The evidence given by parties [too heavily inked to read.]


Launceston Examiner, 14 August 1844

INQUEST. - On Saturday afternoon, an inquest was convened at the Prince of Wales Inn, to enquire into the cause of the death of s child named James Evans; deceased died at the factory from inflammation of the lungs, and verdict was returned accordingly.

INQUEST. - Medical Practitioners. - An inquest was held on Monday afternoon, before Captain Gardiner, at the Black Swan, upon view of the body of a child named Alfred [Richard?] Thomas Spencer.  The mother proved that the child had been ill for some time, that she consulted Mrs. Childs, a midwife, who recommended castor oil; the child grew worse, and Dr. Lewis was called in, who also prescribed castor oil, which the mother administered with a drop of essence of peppermint.  The child was not again visited by any medical gentleman, and expired on Sunday night.  Dr. Maddox performed a post mortem examination and found that death resulted from inflammation of the lungs.  He was of opinion that had medical attendance been procured, the child would have had a better chance of being saved, although in one so young, the disease was of a very dangerous nature.  Any competent practitioner ought, with proper care, to have discovered the seat of the disease, and although castor oil and peppermint might not have been materially injurious, in the quantities administered, it was not proper treatment.  The jury in returning their verdict of natural death, expressed regret that proper medical attendance had not been obtained.  The coroner has suggested that an information be laid against Dr. Lewis for porescribi9ng without being as duly authorized medical practitioner.


 Courier (Hobart), 16 August 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. - An Inquest was held at the City Hotel, before Mr. Price as Coroner, on view of the body of William, the infant son of Mr. Abraham Adams, who came by his death by having an over-dose of Dolby's mixture administered to him by Maria Ann Webb. This case affords a caution to parents not to leave medicines within reach of servants ignorant if their nature, - Maria Webb having been the servant of Mr. Adams, and in his and Mrs. Adams' absence having administered the mixture as she had before seen it  done to the child, but without any knowledge of what quantity should have been given.  The jury found that death was caused as stated.


Launceston Examiner, 17 August 1844

DEATH BY DROWNING. - An inquest was held on Friday upon the body of a man who slipped from the [hull] of the brig Fox, a few days since, and was drowned.  A verdict was returned of accidental death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 17 August 1844

SUDDEN DEATH. -On Thursday an inquest was held at the Union Jack, Campbell-street, before John Price, Esq., coroner, on view of the body of William Yates, aged 74, who fell down dad on the same morning whilst passing along. Verdict, Died by the visitation of God, from an enlargement of the heart.

   On Saturday evening a man of the name of Duggan dropped down dead in the William the Fourth, Liverpool-street. An inquest was held yesterday before J. Price, Esq., and a highly respectable jury, when a verdict was returned accordingly.  There were no suspicious circumstances attending the death of the deceased. - H. T. Advertiser, Aug. 13.


Launceston Examiner, 28 August 1844

FATAL ACCIDENT. - On Tuesday last a man named Henry Owen, in the employment of Mr. henry Hopkins, while proceeding towards his master's residence, and in the act of fastening a portion of the harness of his horse, accidentally fell before his cart.  The wheel passed over his body, and inflicted injuries so severe that he died on Friday.  Every attention was paid to the unfortunate man by Drs. Huxtable and Kenworthy.  An inquest was held before the coroner at Evandale, when the jury returned a verdict of Accidental death.  The unfortunate man was not intoxicated, as is usually the case when such accidents occur.


Launceston Examiner, 31 August 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Wednesday, upon the body of a child who died at the factory, and a verdict returned of died by the visitation of God.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 10 September 1844


Refers to the Adams inquest and Infant Remedies.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 17 September 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held by Mr. Price, at the Cascade Factory, on Friday last, on the body of Ellen M'Carthy, who, it was rumoured, had come to her death by taking an overdose of calomel, administered in mistake for magnesia.  In consequence of this rumour, the Coroner used more than ordinary pains to obtain the full particulars of the case, in aid of which a post mortem examination was made by two surgeons, Drs. Casey and Dermer, who discovered that death had ensued from the effusion of a large quantity of fluid in the cavity of the chest.  A verdict was returned of Died by the visitation of God.


Launceston Advertiser, 21 September 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. - Yesterday afternoon an inquest was held at the house of Mr. Child, of the Black Swan, before A. Gardiner, Esq., on the body of Mary A. Prescot, aged about 20 years.  The deceased it appeared had been unwell for some time, but died as was thought rather suddenly.  The verdict was died by the visitation of God.


 Launceston Examiner, 25 September 1844

BODY FOUND. - On Tuesday, the body of a man was picked up, on the west bank of the Tamar, opposite the chequer buoy, in Newnham road.  An inquest was summoned, and two or three witnesses expressed their belief, that it was the body of a man named Phillips, who belonged to the cutter Alpha, and had been suddenly missed about a month since.  The witnesses found their opinion from the stature and apparel, but could not recognise the features, being in a decomposed state.  The same individual had a very narrow escape from drowning upon a former occasion, when under the influence of liquor.  The Jury returned a verdict of found dead.

INQUEST. - An inquest was held last Monday, upon the body of an infant, named William Albert Beaumont, whose parents reside in Charles-street. It appeared by the evidence, that the child was found dead in bed, in his mother's arms, and Dr. Pugh having given his opinion that death was occasioned by suffocation, a verdict was returned accordingly.


Launceston Examiner, 28 September 1844

Inquest. - Mysterious Death. - On Saturday an inquest was held at Mr., Smith's, White Pheasant, Goulburn-0strreet, on view of the body of Thomas Whitton, an infant three weeks old, whose parents reside in Upper-Goulburn-street.  From the evidence it appeared that death had been occasioned by a fracture of the skull, and the inquest was adjourned to Monday (yesterday).  Further evidence was then adduced, but without any satisfactory result, and the jury returned a verdict of died from a mortal wound received upon the head, but how, where, or by what means received, there is no evidence before the jury.  The mother of the deceased prevaricated much in her testimony.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 28 September 1844

DROWNING. - We regret to have again to announce a melancholy accident at Port Arthur, the particulars of which are contained in the following extract from the letter of a correspondent:-

September 12th, 1844.

   It is again my painful duty to transmit you an outline of another melancholy catastrophe of the loss of four individuals by water, which occurred last Saturday, near Norfolk Bay.  As far as I am given to understand, three soldiers of the 51st regiment, on their return from Port Arthur, were on board the Fusilier (a Gov. Schooner), and requested the coxswain to take them in his dingy so far as Eagle Hawk Rock; and on the following morning the boat was found, containing the [???], a bundle, and a [firelock]; and not a great distance from it, the body of one of the military.  Evidently, therefore, the boat could have been capsized, as the above contents were in it - though it still remains a mystery how the unfortunate accident occurred.  And as yet the bodies of the coxswain and the other two soldiers have not been discovered. - H. T. Advertiser.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 1 October 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST.- The Richmond Coroner held an inquest at Glenayr, near that settlement, last week, on the body of Alice Lowes, who was found dead in her bed on the morning of the 25th September, when the following facts were elicited:-

   It appeared that herself and her husband, who is overseer on the Glenayr Estate, retired to bed at the usual time, leaving a stove containing charcoal burning in the room, in which there is no fireplace.  The overseer not having appeared at his usual hour on the following morning, he was called upon by Mr. Shoobridge, the manager on the estate, and after repeated and loud knocking for some time the overseer came to the door, and after having with difficulty opened it., presented a fearful appearance, being scarcely ab le to stand or speak, and stated that he thought his wife was dead, which on examination proved true.  Dr. Coverdale was immediately sent for, when it was ascertained that the evaporation of the gas occasioned by the burning charcoal (the room door being shut) having no vent to escape. She being the weakest person was suffocated; and had the husband not been awaked by the manager, he would doubtless have soon followed his wife.  The parties were married about three weeks ago; she was between forty and fifty years of age.  Verdict - Accidental death.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 5 October 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. - Yesterday an inquest was held at Mr. Martin's, the Butchers' Arms, Argyle-street, upon the remains of a plasterer named John Higginbotham, who resided in Argyle-street, and who fell into the old quarry the evening before.  It appears the deceased was attempting to secure a goat which got into the quarry at the corner of Patrick and Argyle-streets; he was very much in liquor at the time; and in endeavouring to get the goat through the palings, he fell a depth of fifteen feet into seven feet of water.  Intelligence having been conveyed to Bathurst-street watch house, District Smith (?????) immediately proceeded to the spot. And with the "creepers" succeeded, after an hour's exertion, in drawing out the body.  A verdict was accordingly returned of - Died from suffocation by drowning

DROWNING. - We learn that last Sunday three weeks a wood-loaded boat was overset in a squall in the river, opposite to Mount Direction, and one of the men drowned; and extraordinary as it may appear, although the Coroner of Hobart Town was immediately made acquainted with the circumstance, no notice has yet been taken of it.  Has human life become this cheap in the colony?


Launceston Examiner, 9 October 1844

HOBART TOWN          .

(From the Hobart Town Advertiser.)

Inquest. - An inquest was held at the Whaler's Return, on view of the body of George Palmer, a seaman on board the Black Wattle.  The deceased, who slept in the cabin of the vessel, was found dead on Wednesday morning in a sitting position.  There being some charcoal in the cabin, supplied by Mr. Rhodes at Palmer's own request, for the purpose of keeping up a fire in the night, the unfortunate man, on returning to the cabin, had let down the hatch.  He then lighted his fire, and, the current of fresh air being cut off, the natural consequence of suffocation ensued.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 12 October 1844


  An inquest was held before A. Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, at 2 o'clock on Friday last, at the Scottish Chief, in Wellington-street, on view of the body of William Marshall, who accidentally fell from a cart, the wheel of which passed over him and caused serious injuries, on the 28th ult., on which day he was received into the Hospital, and lingered till the 9th instant, when he expired.

   The following inhabitants composed the Jury:- Messrs. Tucker, foreman; - Ashton, Bradford, Cutler, Bonner, Carr, and Wainwright, who being duly sworn, proceeded with the Coroner to the Hospital, in order to view the body of the deceased.

   Dr. Maddox deposed that William Marshall was brought to the Hospital on the 28th Sept., when he was in a state of intoxication.  Both of his collar bones, three upper ribs, and part of the sternum were fractured - the right lung was wounded.  He expired on the 9th Oct., from the effects of the injuries.

   The deceased told witness that his cart was loaded with wood, and he was sitting on the shaft, when the tilt-pin came out and the cart went up; he knew nothing further.  Deponent also stated that deceased had received several severe contusions on the face, and bled very extensively from the left ear.  He answered to the name of Marshall, and it was his body that jury had that day viewed at the Hospital.

   The Coroner here stated to the jury that he was under the necessity of adjourning the inquest, as a witness who resided in the country had not arrived. The jury were then severally bound over in the sum of 10 Pounds each to meet at 10 o'clock to-morrow.

   The jury re-assembled at 10 o'clock this day, and returned a verdict, that - William Marshall died by the visitation of God, from the injuries described by Dr. Maddox, but how or by what means those injuries were received, no evidence had been adduced before them,


Launceston Examiner, 23 October 1844

SUDDEN DEATH. - Mr. John Hely, sixty years of age, expired suddenly on Tuesday morning.  He was taken ill, and removed to the house of his son, where he insisted upon taking an emetic, shortly after which, he fell into a slumber, from which he never awoke.  When the parties present at his bed-side endeavoured to rouse him, they found life was extinct.  An Inquest was held on Tuesday, at the Ferry-house, when Dr. Maddox, performed a post mortem examination.  He deposed that the immediate cause of death was apoplexy, and a verdict was returned accordingly.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 23 October 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held yesterday, at two o'clock, before A. Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, on the body of John Healey, senr., aged 60 years, who departed this lifer at the residence of his son, near the Ferry-house, on Tamar-street.  The deceased, on Monday last, being ill, sent for his son, who had him removed in a cart to his own residence.  Every possible attention was bestowed upon him, and about six o'clock on Tuesday morning the deceased took an emetic, and expired in a few minutes afterwards.  Dr. Maddox gave in evidence, that there was a great congestion of the vessels of the brain, a rupture of a blood-vessel on the right side; and about six ounces of serum in the stomach.  There was also extensive inflammation of the right lung; the liver was exceedingly large, and appeared as of deceased had been a free liver.  The immediate cause of death was apoplexy, and entirely independent of the emetic.  There was sufficient to account for his death, and no spirited were perceptible in the stomach, which was natural and healthy in its appearance.  Verdict - Died by the visitation of God.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 29 October 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. - Yesterday an inquest was held at Mr. Mezger's Hotel, in Argyle-street, before John Price, Esq.,, and as very respectable Jury, upon the body of Isabella Hyde, aged 37, who met her death by burning, on Saturday evening, in Brisbane -street.  It appeared that she had been in the town marketing, and had let the man she was living with, to return home by herself - he having given her 2s.  A neighbor hearing cries for help, burst open the door of deceased's house, which had shut with a spring lock, and found the poor woman enveloped in flames; she was taken to the Colonial Hospital, where she died in about nine hours, - her right side being most frightfully burnt.  No one knew how the poor creature caught fire; but a candle was burning in the socket on a table near a window - the curtains of which were burnt to a cinder.  The Jury returned a verdict accordingly.


Launceston Examiner, 6 November 1844

FATAL ACCIDENT. - The friends of Henry Clayton, Esq., will learn with sincere regret that a child of his, about four years of age, was accidentally killed last Monday, while Mr. and Mrs. Clayton were absent from home.  The child had been taken by a farm servant in a cart to some distance, and the bullocks trampled the child to death.  The little sufferer died almost immediately.  An inquest was held yesterday, and the remains interred to-day.


Launceston Advertiser, 9 November 1844

AN AFFLICTING BEREAVEMENT, by which a whole family has been lunged into the [?] grief, occurred on the 4th inst., on the farm of H. Clayton, Esq., at Wickford.  Arthur Clayton, a fine, interesting little boy, five years of age, the son of Mr. Clayton was riding on a bullock cart, supposed, delighting himself by imitating the driver with a stick in the management of the team, while thus engaged, the sudden jolting of the vehicle threw the little fellow to the ground, and the wheel passed over his head, crushing it in a most frightful manner.  Death was instantaneous.  The man in charge of the bullocks, absented himself, from fear of the consequences of the accident.  An inquest was held on Wednesday last, when a verdict of accidental death was arrived at.  The melancholy and depressing event has suggested the following verses by a friend of the family: - .  .  . 


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 9 November 1844

MELANCHOLY ACCIDENT. - On Wednesday, the 22nd ultimo, Charles William Scobie, third son of Mr. James Clark, of [Glenbie], a fine boy, seven years of age, was playing on the banks of the Derwent, at [Clusy], when he unfortunately fell into the river.  Every exertion was made to save him by a person who jumped into the river, and swam some distance with him, but the rapidity of the current rendered his efforts ineffectual.  Every means have been resorted to, to recover the body, but as yet without success.  His bereaved family are in the deepest affliction. - - Col. Times, Nov. 5.


District Constable Thomas Smith and William Hodgkinson; drowned.


Courier (Hobart), 12 November 1844

MELANCHOLY ACCIDENT. - We lament to announce that, whist on a visit at Redlands, Miss Sarah Marsetti, daughter of T. F. Marsetti, Esq., of the Ouse, on Wednesday, died in a state of insensibility from injuries sustained by a fall from her horse on the day previous, to the great grief of her family, and deeply regretted by all those who had the pleasure of her acquaintance.


Launceston Examiner, 16 November 1844

Death from drowning. - A prisoner of the crown, named George Fernyouh, was accidentally drowned whilst bathing near the punt, at the Cataract, on Friday.  The body was recovered in the evening, and an inquest will be held this day.

INQUEST.  - An inquest was held on Friday, at the Scottish Chief, before Captain Gardiner, on the body of George Gellard, Mr. Rocher's shepherd, who died at the Colonial Hospital from the effects of the accident reported in our last.  The deceased communicated to Dr. Maddox the particulars of the occurrence, who repeated his statement to the jury, and upon that evidence a verdict was returned of killed by the accidental discharge of a gun.  It appeared that deceased was running after some sheep with a loaded gun upon his shoulder, when he tripped and the piece went off; the contents, a heavy charge of BB shot, passed through the arm and lodged in the thigh, mortification quickly ensued and resulted in death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 16 November 1844

INQUESTS. - An inquest was held a few days ago at the Harvest House, New Town, on view of the body of Joseph Tapper, who lived at Kangaroo Bottom, and fell from a dray whilst in a state of intoxication on returning home.  Verdict - Accidental death.

   On Saturday last, an inquest was held on board the Anson, prison ship, before John Price, Esq., on view of the body of Mary Ann Gilchrist, who had been ill for some time.  Verdict - Died by the visitation of God. - H. T. Advertiser.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 19 November 1844

The Lieutenant-Governor has been pleased to appoint Charles Meredith, Esq., to be a Coroner for the Territory.


Launceston Examiner, 20 November 1844

DEATH FROM SUFFOCATION. -An Inquest was held at Norfolk Plains a few days since, upon the body of a child found dead in the bed where it had slept with its nurse.  The jury returned a verdict of died by the visitation of God.  Death is supposed to have resulted from accidental suffocation.


Launceston Examiner, 27 November 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the Court-house this morning, on the body of a child which died at the factory on the day preceding, and a verdict returned of died by the visitation of God.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 27 November 1844

CORONER'S INQUEST. - An Inquest was holden at the Court House, this day, at ½ past 9 A.M., before W. H. Breton, Esq., Coroner, on view of the body of Charles Robertson.  The jury being sworn, proceeded to the Factory to inspect the body of the deceased, who was born in the Female House of Correction, 27th August last, and  died on the morning of the 26th November inst.  He had been a very sickly child from his birth, and was attacked on Monday last with convulsions, which was the cause of his death. Dr. Maddox saw him daily, and sometimes twice.  The mother and nurses were attentive and kind to him.  Verdict - Died by the visitation of God.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 4 December 1844


   AN inquest was holden at the Verandah wine-vaults, at the corner of Bathurst and York streets, on view of the body of George Reid, on Monday, the 2nd inst., at 12 o'clock before A. Gardiner, Esq., coroner.  On this occasion, Dr. Wales being the nearest medical practitioner, was summoned to attend.  Some of the persons who attended on the jury, being without their costs, were informed by the Coroner, that he could not allow then to sit as jurors in that condition, which he considered as an insult both to himself as Coroner, and also to the other parties attending; he thought that the doctor and himself might as well appear without their costs, and informed the parties that they could not be allowed to attend the Supreme Court, or Quarter Sessions, in that manner.  Several persons, who had been summoned as jurors, not attending, directions were given to the district constable to lodge informations against them.

   Rev. Mr. Cotham said - On Friday afternoon last, as man called at his residence and requested him to go immediately to the house of James Leys, in York-street, to see a poor man who was ill.  He accompanied the messenger, and saw Reid, who was partly delirious; he thought it proper the man should be removed to the hospital, as the room her was in appeared very offensive, and there was no one to attend on him; he went to request admittance for him at the hospital, but was informed, he could not be admitted; he visited several times during the day on Reid, and administered the consolations of the Gospel; visited him the following morning, and went to Dr. Walsh, who, by his request, accompanied him to see Reid, who had, a short timer previously, expired; did not know whether medical aid had been called in till he went to Dr. Walsh.

   On the suggestion of the Coroner, Dr. Walsh proceeded to take a post mortem examination of the body of the deceased.

   George Gerard, a cooper, who resided in the same house with deceased, said, on Saturday last, he went into the room where Reid was.  A young woman who was in the room told him the man was lying on nothing but the bare boards, and asked him to help her to lift him up, while she put the beds under him, which he did.  Reid, when lifted up, said, "God be with me, and you too!" and in about five minutes after expired.  He had known deceased about three days, who had been ill during that time. During the three days, he could not speak plain; he could only mutter, so that no person would understand what he said.  He did not want for anything - food was taken to him, but he could not east it.  He had no medical attendance during the time he knew him.

   James Leys - Resides in York-street; the deceased lodged at his house; came to lodge with him about three or four weeks ago, and was by trade a dyer; he went about the town, and, as far as he knew, had nothing to do; did not know how he gained the money, but he paid him for his lodgings regularly every day; he did not seem to want food, or any other requisite that was necessary; he was always weakly, but had no particular disorder, except a wound he had some time; did not see any medical gentleman near him whilst in his house; he held a ticket-of-leave, and was about 58 years of age, and was not in liquor except a little on one occasion, during the last three weeks; he died on Saturday.  On Friday forenoon, he complained very much, and witness said to him he had better go and get medical attendance; but deceased said ":Oh, no," and requested him to get some opium for him; he did not don so; finding in the afternoon he appeared getting lower, witness left a man to take care of him during Friday night; on Saturday morning deceased was worse; the Rev. Mr. Cotham cane and saw him; he was nearly speechless; witness had a conversation with Mr. Cotham outside the door, and on his return he found Reid dead; shortly after Mr. Cotham returned, accompanied by Dr. Walsh.

   Dr. Walsh - was requested by the Rev. Mr. Cotham, on Saturday last, to  accompany him to see a man who was very ill; he did so, but on arriving at the house of Leys, Reid was dead; held a post mortem examination of the body; found that the immediate cause of death was - very extensive inflammation of the intestines.  There were no marks of violence on the body of deceased; he seemed to be of a very debilitated appearance; could not say he had suffered want.  Verdict - Died by the visitation of God.


Launceston Examiner, 4 December 1844

DEATH BY DROWNING. - The body of a prisoner of the crown was found in the river Bligh, near Emu Bay, about ten days since.  A medical gentleman examined the remains, and being satisfied that death resulted from suffocation by drowning, in the absence of a coroner, the body was interred without the usual preliminary of an inquest.  Deceased, who was a foreigner, and we believe an absconder, was probably endeavouring to ford the stream, having taken off part of his apparel.  Upon his person was found a rough chart of the coast, desacribi8nhg the rivers and creeks.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 7 December 1844

FEMALE FACTORY, CATARACT. - The Hobart Town Advertiser reports an inquest on the body of a female named Elizabeth Rhodes, which died from natural causes; and states, that the very few deaths that occur at the Factory speak much in favour of the general treatment and good health of the inmates.

FATAL ACCIDENT.  We regret to state, that some days ago a laboring man named Alexander Reid, residing at York Town, was killed by the sudden fall of a tree, which he was engaged in felling.  An inquest was last week held on the body at George Town, and a verdict of accidental death returned.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 10 December 1844

FATAL ACCIDENT. -  CORONER'S INQUEST. - Yesterday, an Inquest was held at the Thatched House, in Argyle-street, before Mr. Price, Coroner, and a very respectable Jury,  to enquire into the cause of the death of Margaret Vallence, a child about three years of age (the daughter of a stonemason), who was run over on Sunday afternoon, in Murray-street, by a gentleman's carriage.  The investigation occupied some time, and a Verdict of Accidental Death was returned. It appeared that the child was wandering about, without any protection, and that the wheel of the carriage, passing over her head, fractured the skull so dreadfully, as to cause immediate death. 

   The manner in which children are allowed to run about the streets quite unguarded, is culpable in the extreme, and we are convinced the gentleman whose carriage caused the fatal occurrence feels as acutely upon the subject as the parents can possibly do.  .  .  . 


Launceston Examiner, 11 December 1844

DROWNING. - On Tuesday se'nnight, ass some of Mr. Kentish's men were crossing the Blythe, at the usual, but dangerous, fording  place at the mouth of the river, they found the body of a man on the bar, who had evidently been drowned in the attempt to ford, either when the tide was too high or in too deep a part of the channel.  The men returned, and gave information to constable Donovan, of Emu Bay, who despatched a messenger to the magistrates at Circular Head; but it is understood that, the Blythe river being within the district of Port Sorell, the inquest cannot be held until Mr. Meredith arrives from thence.  The poor man was a ticket-of-leaver bolter, with a pass from Bothwell.  We have not heard his name.  It is exceedingly dangerous for even a good swimmer to attempt to ford these bars with a knapsack on his shoulders; but the unfortunate deceased appears to have been alone, was probably unacquainted with the river, and must have attempted to ford after dusk, if at low water. 

   A man was drowned at the Mersey a fortnight before, in attempting to ford the crossing place on the company's old road.


Launceston Examiner, 20 December 1844

OFFICIAL IGNORANCE. - A short time since, an inquest was held near St. Peter's Pass, upon the body of a waggoner, who met his death by falling off the shafts of his waggon; the wheels of which had passed over his head.  As soon as the body was discovered, information was given to the chief constable of the Oatlands district, who directed that the body should not be removed until the Coroner had sat upon it. The Body accordingly remained in the road, and would doubtless have continued there until coroner, jury, and all had sat upon it; but for the accidental circumstance of Mr. Whiteford having been made aware of the locality of the body; when it was of course instantly removed. .  .  .  Communicated.


Launceston Examiner, 21 December 1844

DROWNING. - Charles Stewart, steward of the brig Scout, was accidentally drowned at Williams Town on the 9th instant, while endeavoring to get into the boat lying astern.


   An inquest was sitting on view of the body of John Smith, a sawyer, whose death had been occasioned by violence.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 21 December 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held, this afternoon, at the Star public-house, in Charles-street, before Captain Gardiner, Coroner, on the body of Mr. G. Boon, when a verdict of - Died from intemperance, aggravated by a fall received a few days since, was returned.  The full particulars will appear in our next.


Courier (Hobart), 24 December 1844

ACCIDENTS. -  Yesterday an unfortunate female, one of the German emigrants, fell from a cart, on this side of the Risdon Ferry, and almost instantly expired.   She was in a state of pregnancy at the time.

DEATH FROM THE BITE OF A SNAKE. -  A few days ago, a son of Mr. Argent's, near the Black Brook, was amusing himself in catching rabbits at a short distance from his father's house, and on putting his hand into what appeared to be a rabbit burrow, was bitten by a snake which had there secreted itself.  He was shortly after seized with drowsiness, and was with difficulty persuaded by his companions to try to reach his house.  Though medical attendance was promptly obtained, he died the same evening.

INQUEST - COMMITTAL FOR MURDER.  - We mentioned in our last that an inquest had been held on the body of John White, a sawyer, who had for some years resided near Three Hut Point, and that the inquest had been adjourned to obtain further evidence.  At the adjourned inquest on Friday the medical evidence went to show that death had been occasioned by a severe injury on the head.  Other evidence went to show that the injury had been inflicted with an axe.  A man of the name of Hillman had been apprehended on the charge; he was also a sawyer, but had been out of employ.  The deceased and the prisoner had an altercation and a fight.  No other person was present when the injury was inflicted.  The prisoner Hillman is fully committed for trial on the Coroner's warrant, on the charge of wilful murder. - Hobart Town Advertiser, Dec. 24.


Launceston Examiner, 25 December 1844

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Saturday afternoon, upon view of the body of Mr. Boon, hair-dresser, Charles-street.  Dr. Haygarth attended the deceased, and deposed that death resulted from the effects of a fall from a gig, accelerated by excessive indulgence in intoxicating liquors.  The jury returned a verdict to that effect.  The deceased was in a state of intoxication when the accident occurred.  Mr. Boon's partner, Mr. Cullen, died about three months since.

SUICIDE. - An Inquest has been held at Carrick, upon the body of an elderly person, who terminated his existence by hanging himself; we are not in possession of the verdict.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 25 December 1844


ON Saturday afternoon, at three o'clock, a Coroner's inquest was held at Mr. Sweeney's, Star Inn, Charles-street, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., coroner, and a respectable jury, touching the death of the late Mr. George Boon.  The following facts appeared from the foregoing statement:-

   Thomas Priest deposed that, on Sunday afternoon, the 15th instant, the deceased requested him to accompany and drive him in a gig to Longford; he did so, and whilst there deceased drank part of two glasses of spirits;  did not take any on the road; after remaining about an hour, started to return, and when about the other side of the Launceston side of Mr. Kitson's public-house, he (witness) drove a little on one side so as to admit of the 'Comet' coach to pass, and, on his proceeding to enter the centre of the road again, he drove against a heap of stones; the gig was upset, and witness and deceased were precipitated out; witness never lost command of the horses, having held the reins, and got the gig righted; at this, witness perceived a man coming along the fence, and, looking round, he found the deceased lying on his back; he was got into the gig by this man, and he also accompanied the deceased in the gig, on purposed to keep him steady; deceased only complained of his wrist being hurt, and, though he spoke to him several times on his way to town, he never answered him; on reaching deceased's residence, he called his servant, and then proceeded to obtain medical advice for himself, as he was much injured in the arm; the deceased was drunk, and under the influence of liquor, when he started for Longford; I was sensible of what I was doing; had only drank two glasses of spirits that day. (The witness was a teetotaler we are informed.)

   A servant of the deceased named Coward, proved to receiving him out of the gig and putting him in bed the night in question; he sent for Dr. Haygarth, who attended very attentively up to the time of his death; deceased got up and attended his business on Monday as usual, and only complained of his wrist; the deceased died on Friday night; had seen him drink brandy on Monday; always kept spirits in the house.

   Dr. B. G. Haygarth deposed to attending the deceased on Sunday night, and found him insensible; two bruises were perceptible, one on forehead, the other on his wrist; on carefully examining them, I satisfied myself that he was under the influence of some intoxicating liquor, and that the total insensibility was owing more to that cause than any other; I heard no   more till Monday evening when I was sent for, and found him in a complete state of insensibility; he had several fits in my presence; after remaining several hours, I got him somewhat restored; l saw him again in the morning; he was, at that time, in such a state of delirium as would be caused by intoxicating liquors; he remained pretty nearly in the same state till yesterday; I saw him three times during the day, and in the evening, I received a message to the effect that he was dead; I then proceeded and examined the corpse, and I consider the immediate cause of death was, "excessive use of spirituous liquor, aggravated, no doubt, by his fall."

   Verdict. - Died from the effects of intoxication, aggravated by a fall received a few days since."

   [The witness, Priest, appeared to be suffering from his injuries, which was said to be serious by Dr. Haygarth.]


Launceston Examiner, 1 January 1845

   MURDER. - Two men have been committed from Campbell Town, upon a charge of murder, perpetrated at Mount Stewart, South Esk, near Llewellyn.

  INQUEST. - An inquest was held a few days since, upon the body of a Mrs. Handeforth, who resided on the west bank of the Tamar.  Mr. Davis was coroner, and Dr. Smith the medical witness.  The deceased expired suddenly, but from natural causes, and verdict to that effect was returned.


Launceston Advertiser, 3 January 1845

CORONER'S INQUEST. - Yesterday, a Coroner's Inquest was held at Mr. Pearson's public-house, Brisbane-street, on the body of Ann Wakley.  The deceased, it appeared, had resided in Brisbane-street, for some time, and got her living by begging.  For the last three years, the deceased had been in a bad state of health, but during the last week or two had got very much worse, until on Wednesday last she died.  The deceased had not been attended by any medical man prior to her death.  A short time before she died, the Rev. Mr. Gibbs was sent for, and went to deceased; but she was then nearly insensible.  The deceased had been upwards of thirty years in the colony.  The poor people about the neighbourhood having raised a subscription among themselves for the purchase of a coffin, one of them applied to the Coroner for assistance in procuring gratuitous interment for the deceased, which he immediately provided - at the same time offering a sufficient number of men, as bearers, from the Penitentiary.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 4 January 1q845


A CORONER'S INQUEST was held on Thursday, at 12 o'clock, at Mr. Pearson's public-house, corner of Brisbane and Bathurst Streets, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, and a respectable Jury, on the body of Ann Wakeham, age nearly 60 years.  From the evidence it appeared that the decease4d had been for some time ailing, but for the last three weeks she had been much worse; kept her bed, and on Wednesday she ceased to exist.  Prior to her death, the Rev. Mr. Gibbs visited her, but she was quite incapable of receiving any assistance from that reverend gentleman, being at the time unable to speak, being, in fact, insensible.  No medical man had seen or attended her up to the time of her death. Dr. Walsh gave evidence that since she died he had examined the body, and gave it as his opinion that death arose from general debility; no post mortem examination had been taken, as the Jury deemed it unnecessary, several of them stating that they had known the deceased for the last two or three years, and always considered her in a dying state.  It appeared that she had been a resident of this colony 31 years, the last few of which she had subsisted on the alms of the charitable poor. A woman, residing in the house where deceased died, asked Capt. Gardiner for a piece o0f ground, gratuitously, to bury her, to which he responded with his usual generosity, and, in addition, offered to supply a coffin, and men to attend to convey the body to its last home.  The poor people in the neighbourhood made a small subscription amongst themselves for the purchase of a coffin.  The Jury returned a verdict of Died by the visitation of God.

DEATHS FROM STARVATION! - For the information of the Rev. Mr. Browne, we state that coroner's inquests have been held on no less than six persons in this town, who died from want, within the past twelve months, neither of whom, received medical attendance.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 4 January 1845

   AWFUL MURDER. - A dreadful murder was committed few days since in the neighbourhood of Llewellyn, South Esk. It appeared that a man of the name of Meek entertained a feeling of jealousy towards another man, a shearer, on account of some woman - that under this feeling the former sent for the latter, intending to kill him.  When the unhappy visitor arrived, Meek appeared to delay the execution of his intention, and a man of the name of Peter Mullaly (like Meek, an aged man), seized the gun which Meek had in readiness, and shot the shearer dead; while a companion of the murdered man had his vest, and the front of his clothes across his stomach, set of fire, and the buttons of his trousers broken, by the discharge of the gun.  The woman, respecting whom the difference had arisen, danced on the body of the murdered man when life was extinct. An inquest was held at Stony Creek by Mr. Henslowe, coroner, and a respectable jury, Mr. J. Aitkin, foreman, and a verdict of wilful murder was given against Meek and Mullally, who await their trial at the next criminal assizes. - Hobart Town Courier.


Launceston Examiner, 4 January 1845

   INQUEST. - An inquest was held before Captain Gardiner, on Thursday, upon the body of a Mrs. Wakeman, aged fifty-five.  The deceased had been gradually declining, and no medical aid having been procured, it was thought advisable to hold an inquest.  Verdict, died by the visitation of God.

   THE MURDER. - The two men recently committed for murder, rented a farm from Mr. Massey, near Llewellyn.  Jealousy appears to have incited the criminals to the perpetration of the deed.  One of them saw the deceased in conversation with a female, with whom he cohabited, and fired; the contents of the piece grazed the body of another man, and entered the body of deceased, who expired almost immediately afterwards.  There are circumstances of a very aggravated nature attending the horrible act.  The occurrence took place on Christmas day.  An inquest was held, which lasted from ten o'clock one morning, until two on the following, and a verdict of wilful murder returned.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 8 January 1845


To the Editor of the Cornwall Chronicle.

   SIR, - Through the medium of your paper, I wish to be informed to what quarter I am to apply for redress.

  The particulars are as follows:- My brother-in-law, Mr. John Scot, of this place, was found in a well, and when taken out lived for a short time, but did not account for how he came there; there was some marks on the body, but I cannot say whether it was from the struggling in the well or not; however, I wished to have a Coroner's Inquest, and accordingly the Police Magistrate of the district (Mr. Archer, Circular Head,( was informed of it though the medium of the District Constable of this place.  Since then I have never heard from him, or has he taken any further notice of it.  So a man may be murdered here and no notice taken of it.   .  .   .  ROBERT ELLIS, EMU BAY, Jan. 2.

[We have made inquiry into the circumstances stated by Mr. Ellis,  and ascertain that Mr. Scott was found in the well on Thursday, the 24th of December - that, when taken out, he complained much of cold, when a large fire was made up, before which he was placed, and was then put to bed.  In a few hours afterwards, he died, having spoken intelligibly from the time he was taken out of the well. Mr.  John Lee Archer, the Police Magistrate at Circular Head (a distance, we understand, of about 80 miles,) was immediately informed of the circumstances, and requested to provide, in his capacity of coroner, at an inquest, for which a Jury assembled.  Mr. Archer declined attending, on the grounds, we understand, of not being coroner for the district. The jurymen themselves examine d the body, and expressed their opinion that the death of the deceased was occasioned by apoplexy.  We suggest the propriety of making all country magistrates coroners, with power to take cognizance of sudden or violent deaths, in the absence of the district coroner. - Ed. C. C.)


Launceston Examiner, 11 January 1845

The Mount Stewart Murder.

.  .  .   Richard Henry Harrington, Esq., deposed that he was a surgeon, residing at Campbell Town; attended an inquest held at Mr. Duxberry's, on the 27th December, and there examined a body, which he had previously seen on the 25th, at Meek's, lying in one of the out-houses in the yard; found a mark on the forehead, a slight incision, two shot marks in the throat, four on the breast, and one on the abdomen.; this was between ten and eleven on Christmas night; on the 27th made a further examination; found two of the shot in the right lung, and one had wounded the principal artery of that lung; the cavity of the chest was full of gorged blood; almost immediate death would have resulted from the wound in the artery; a person could not breathe more than ten minutes with such a wound, but life might continue for fifteen; the chest being gorged with blood would produce suffocation, but the loss of blood was the principal cause of death in this case; found two shot in the wards of the chest, but could not discover the one which wounded the artery; the size of the shot was No. 4.

   By Mr. Macdowell - the body was not removed from Meek's; the jury crossed the river from Duxberry's to view the body.

   His Honor here pointed out that there was no direct evidence of the body, examined by Mr. Harri9ngton, being that of Joseph Turner, and the attorney-general to establish that fact called -  .  .  .

   The jury retired for about half an hour and brought in a verdict of guilty against both prisoners, with a recommendation to mercy.

   HOBART TOWN. - A man named Graders was felling a lightwood tree at the Huon, it lodged in another three, and on chopping the other tree down, the lightwood fell upon him.  He lingered about six hours after the accident.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 21 January 1845

   INQUEST. - An inquest was held yesterday at the Whaler's return, on the body of a man named Smith, who fell into the water from a small colonial craft named the Sir Eardley Wilmot, on Saturday evening and was drowned.  His body was picked up on Sunday evening.  Verdict - Accidental death.

   SUSPECTED MURDER. - A short time ago a young female, named Saunders, residing at New Norfolk, was suddenly missed.  Search was made in the bush, and about the township, while the river in its vicinity was carefully dragged.  The remains of the Poor girl were found, under circumstances that lead to a strong suspicion that she had been murdered.  Further, at resent, we do not deem it prudent to say.


Launceston Examiner, 22 January 1845

   MELANCHOLY ACCIDENT. - When the Eagle left Circular Head, Mr. John Lee Archer had started for Emu Bay to hold an inquest upon a body found in the river Cam.  It was supposed, from the description given, that the body was that of Mr. John King, formerly of Dun Edin, but for some time lately residing at Table Cape. Mr. King was the father of a large family, who by such a melancholy occurrence will be thrown destitute upon the world.


Courier (Hobart), 23 January 1845

BARBAROUS MURDER. - It is with deep feelings of horror and regret that we have to record the barbarous murder of an innocent girl under circumstances which, although somewhat involved in mystery at the resent moment, leave little room to doubt the fact of its having been a cold-blooded assassination.  It is apprehended that the unhappy girl had fallen a victim to the double crime of lust and murder. Jane Saunders, the name of the unfortunate deceased, was an orphan, eighteen years of age, and good looking.  She was the youngest daughter of a clever mechanic who was well known a few years ago in Hobart Town as a cabinet-maker, named John Saunders.  She had been some months in the service of Mrs. Hathaway, the lady of our American Consul, and had been stopping with her mistress and family at the Derwent Hotel, New Norfolk, where Mrs. Hathaway had been spending some weeks for the sake of change of air, and to benefit the health of her children.  It had been arranged that the family should return to town on Monday, and Jane Saunders, anxious to have all the family clothes ready, was occupied to a late hour than usual in ironing and getting up their linen.  It is imagined that she went down to the kitchen to fetch an iron from the fire, and that from thence she was either called or taken into the garden.  Her mistress missed her about eleven o'clock, but although search was made for her during the night and following day the body was not discovered until Monday, when it was found in the river close to the wharf of the hotel.  The body is dreadfully disfigured by the ill treatment which the poor girl has evidently received.  It is further stated that there is much cause to fear that two men servants belonging to the hotel, whose names we purposely abstain from giving at present, have, after violating her person, inhumanly murdered and thrown her into the river.  The two men are in custody awaiting the result of the coroner's inquest.

   Up to the time of our going to press no further intelligence had been received from New Norfolk respecting this dreadful catastrophe.  The public mind is much agitated, and everybody waiting with intense and painful anxiety the arrival of Mills's coach with the result of the coroner's inquest. New Norfolk has obtained a melancholy celebrity in cases of the like, or nearly similar events; this, if we mistake not, being the fourth tragical occurrence which has happened in that neighbourhood.


Courier (Hobart), 25 January 1845



   William Hillman stood charged with the wilful murder of John Smith, by striking him on the head with an axe.  This was another lamentable instance of the awful consequences of drunkenness.  Prisoner and deceased lived at the hut of a sawyer named Jones, at D'Entrecasteaux Channel.  They, Jones, and a woman named Elizabeth Chapman, who lived with Jones, spent the whole of the night of the9th December in drinking, never going to bed.  At daylight Jones went away to the hut of a neighbour.

   Samuel Dixon- An hour or two afterwards the woman also went over to Dixons's; prisoner and deceased had been fighting during the morning, but the cause did not transpire in evidence.  After the woman left, a man named Congreve observed prisoner and deceased wrestling together and fall down; he called out to them, but being at a distance, was not aware if they heard him.  They then got up and went to the hut, Smith going first and prisoner following at a few yards distance; was observed to pick up something about where the axe used in cutting up  wood used to lie, and then go into the hut.  Soon after the prisoner came out, and threw down a keg; deceased went and picked it up, and took it into the hut; prisoner followed him in, and shortly came out again, shutting the door after him; walked away in the direction of Dixon's hut.  This was about 6 or 7 o'clock in the morning of the 9th December.  Congreve then went into Dixon's hut, thinking prisoner was coming there; he told Jones he had "better go home, for the keg would be empty;" Jones then went off for his own hut, accompanied by two men, Thomas and Barnes; about halfway, but nearer to Dixon's hut, Hillman, the prisoner, was found lying down, fast asleep; passing him, they proceeded to Jones's hut; on entering which deceased was discovered doubled on the floor on his knees, with his head under his bed-place; Timms [Jones?] pulled him out, when his head was found to be covered with blood and dreadfully cut near the left temple; an axe was lying on the floor.  After ineffectual attempts to stop the blood, deceased's head was tied up, and he was put into be.

   Most of the witnesses represented deceased to have continued in a state of insensibility up to the time of his death; but Samuel Dixon deposed to the circumstance of deceased saying to prisoner, "Black Bill, you know nothing about it."  This was said upon prisoner's remarking, in the presence of deceased, that "If he did do it, he knew nothing about it."

   Thomas Ross, Dispenser at the Browns' River probation station, attended deceased on the day he was wounded.  States that deceased was sensible when he saw him, and said, in answer to his question, that "he did not know:" how he got hurt.  Deceased lingered till the fifth day, dying on the evening of the 13th December.

   Dr. Crook examined the body at the Inquest.  The skull was fractured and depressed - such an injury as would necessarily prove fatal without instant and roper medical treatment6, which was not afforded to deceased.

   The Jury (without retiring) surprised His Honor by the amazing expeditio0n with which they arrived at their verdict of Manslaughter. His Honor observed that they could hardly have taken his charge into consideration.  Mr. M'Dowell, foreman, assured His Honor they had.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 25 January 1845

   NEW NORFOLK MURDER. - The Inquest upon the body of the unfortunate girl (Saunders), who, there is every reason to suppose, has been murdered at New Norfolk, is postponed till Tuesday next, in order to allow time for the finding of an interpreter to the black boy, from the Sandwich Islands, whose testimony is considered so important. .  .  . 


Courier (Hobart), 25 January 1845


     The anxiety felt buy the public respecting the fearful catastrophe has not been allayed by the facts at the coroner's inquest having been unavoidably adjourned.  The jury was summoned before the coroner, T. Mason, Esq., on Tuesday, the 23rd, when a number of witnesses were examined on oath, and the statement of two of Mr. Elwin's servants was taken.  The chief evidence, however, and one upon which as great deal seems to depend is unfolding much that is at present involved either in doubt or mystery, in the evidence of a foreign boy of colour, about twelve years of age, named Keo, a native of Woahue, or Oahu, one of the group of the Sandwich Isles.  The lad, unfortunately, does not understand English, or speak it with sufficient fluency to enable him to give an explanation of the particulars which he evidently appears to know concerning this fatal and frightful circumstance.  In consequence of this difficulty, and the extreme importance attached to the boy's testimony, the coroner suggested the propriety of adjourning the Inquest till Tuesday next.  Meanwhile the utmost exertion is being made to discover some person acquainted with the Sandwich Islands tongue, in order that the boy's statement may be correctly and minutely obtained.  It is extremely desirable for the end of justice that an interpreter should be found.  The testimony of Drs. Dowe and Weston, who made a post mortem examination of the body, went to show that death was occasioned by a blow at the back of the head, causing a rupture of one of the veins over the brain, and upon opening the head a considerable escape of blood ensued.  There were no other marks, we are informed, of extreme violence, but two small wounds were observed near the eyes, neither of them deep enough to cause death. The additional particulars which we have since had of the dark transaction differ but little from the statement which we have already laid before our readers.  It is stated that Jane Saunders went into the kitchen about a quarter past 10 p.m. for an iron heater, and that she was followed by the waiter, Isaac Lockwood, who was absent some ten or fifteen minutes, when he returned and Jane was missing.  An immediate4 search was made the same night, followed up with much anxiety on Sunday, without success.  On the Monday forenoon the body was found in the river about thirty yards from the bank. The unfortunate deceased bore an excellent character - was exceedingly attentive to her duties as nursemaid, and from her prudent conduct, had earned the confidence and esteem of her master and mistress.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 28 January 1845

NEW NORFOLK MURDER. - During the week our indefatigable Chief-constable, Mr. Morgan, has been actively seeking an interpreter of the Sandwich Islands language, in order that the evidence of the native boy living in Mr. Hathaway's family may be rendered available. We believe he has succeeded in finding a lad and am man on board one of the American whalers, so that, we hope, at the Inquest to-day. Some testimony will be adduced, essential to the discovery of the perpetrators of this horrid deed.


Courier (Hobart), 28 January 1845

INQUESTS. - On the 7th instant an inquest was held at the Thatched House Tavern, before John Price, Esq., Coroner, on the body of James Williams.  From the evidence of two persons, named Dawes and Walton, it appeared that the deceased was felling a tree at the Huon River, when the tree falling on him inured him so much as to cause his death in a very short time afterwards.  Mr. Seccombe, Colonial Assistant Surgeon, deposed to the extent of the injury being sufficient to cause death. Verdict - Accidental Death.

   AN inquest was held at the Whalers' Return, New Wharf, on the 20th instant, before John Price, Esq., Coroner, on the body of William Smith.  William Clarke, master of the cutter Sir Eardly Wilmot, stated that the deceased was in his employ; he was on board the vessel on Saturday night (the 19th instant,) between eight and nine o'clock; he was not tipsy; he never saw deceased alive after that timer'; he had quarrelled during the evening with a man named Blizard belonging to the craft; blows had been e exchanged between them; Blizard returned alone that evening.  Constable Frederick Fuse deposed to finding the body in the eater, under the cutter.  Albert Prophet stated that he was in company with deceased on the evening of the 18th instant, and that he was under the influence of liquor.  W. Seccombe, Esq., surgeon, deposed that he had examined the body, and from the absence of all marks of violence, from the froth about the mouth, the turgescence of the vessels of the scalp, and the position of the limbs, it was his opinion that the deceased came to his death by drowning. Verdict - Death by Drowning.

   ON Monday, the 20th instant, an inquest was held before John Price, Esq., Coroner, at the Watermans' Arms, on the body of Robert Artemis Herd.  Andrew Hague, chief officer of the American ship Phamix, stated that the deceased was a seaman of that vessel; that shortly after his return on board the ship ion Sunday (19th instant,) while talking to him he fell down on the deck and died almost directly.  Antoine Hermean, the surgeon of a French ship in the harbor, who had attended the deceased, certified that his death was caused by aneurism of the aorta.  Verdict accordingly.

   On Friday instant, at the Cascade Factory, an inquest was held before John Price, Esq., Coroner, on the body of Thomas M'Keogh, aged ten months.  From the evidence of his mother it appeared that the child had been ill since the 30th December; that every attention had been paid to it during its illness, and that it died on the 23rd January.  Dr. Dermer, the surgeon attending the Female Factory, certified to its death being caused by diarrhoea. Verdict -Died by the Visitation of God.


Launceston Examiner, 29 January 1845

DROWNED IN THE CAM. - The report respecting the fatal accident which occurred to Mr. King, of Table Cape, has been confirmed.  The protracted absence of Mr. King, who had been ten days from home, created alarm, and upon initiating a search the body of the unfortunate deceased was discovered in the river Cam.  It is supposed, that in endeavouring to ford the stream, Mr. King must have slipped into a hole, and been unable to extricate himself.  An inquest was convened, and a verdict of accidental death returned.


Launceston Advertiser, 31 January 1845

   HORRIBLE AND REVOLTING MURDER. -   We deeply regret to record, that a murder was committed at New Norfolk, on the evening of Saturday week, which for atrocity, has scarcely a parallel in the annalS of crime, even in this penal colony. . .  . 

   Whilst in the lower kitchen, she either went to the door, which opens to the garden, voluntarily for some fresh air, or was attracted by hearing conversation.  However, this mIght be, she was suddenly seized and snatched away by two men who hurried her down the garden, the lower part of which leads to the paddock which margins the river Derwent.  The circumstance was observed by a boy of colour, a native of the Sandwich Isles, of the name of Keo; but, as the young woman did not scream out - having, it is supposed, been instantly gagged, the boy gave no alarm at this time. .  .  .   Then came the revelation of Keo the black boy, also a servant of Mrs. Hathaway's, and the search was renewed, and the river dragged. .  .  .   On examination, the appearances were such as to leave not the slightest doubt of her having been subjected to violence of the most revolting description.  The skull was fracture, and there were, beside, evident marks of the pressure of a man's fingers on her neck and face; the flesh was discoloured, and bruises and excoriations on other parts of the body shewed that the unfortunate young female must have struggled to prevent her assailants from accomplishing their purpose with the most despicable resolution. .  .  .   It is remarkable that the body, having remained in the river from the evening of Saturday to the evening of Monday, had not been washed away by the stream.  .  .  .   It is not correct, that either of the prisoners have confessed, or that they have been brought to Hobart Town. They remain in custody at New Norfolk. -  H. T. Advertiser, Jan. 29.


The Courier (Hobart), 1 February 1845


   The inquest upon this case terminated on Tuesday, after an investigation of nearly two days.  The following is the substance of the examination.  The first witness examined, Patrick Dolan, testified that he slept at the Derwent Hotel, at New Norfolk, on the night of Saturday, the 18th instant; witness saw the deceased, Jane Saunders, come to the kitchen at about a quarter past ten o'clock that night; she came for the purpose of getting a heater from the fire.  Witness observed the waiter speak to her in a subdued tone of voice, so low that witness could not catch the meaning of the observation.  The result, however, was, that the deceased went through the pantry, and was followed by the waiter (Lockwood) who, after an absence, as it appeared to witness, of some ten minutes, returned and called the cook, who came down stairs and went out with Lockwood.  After an absence of about half an hour they returned to the kitchen together; witness did not observe anything particular in their manner, excepting that the waiter, Lockwood, prevented the boy Keo from going out of doors.  The witness Dolan subsequently went up stairs to bed, when he observed the cook, waiter, and a female servant, Ellen Binwell, talking together.  The witness, during the time spoken of, did not observe the hostler of the hotel in the kitchen.  A witness named William Evans corroborated the statement made buy Dolan.

  At this period of the investigation the boy Keo was brought forward, and the nature of an oath fully explained to him by means of Erasmus Baker, an interpreter.  The substance of this boy's evidence was to the following effect: -  Keo recollects seeing the body of Jane Saunders on Tuesday last; he saw her alive last, on Saturday the 18th, outside the house, just after supper.  She was under a tree at the back of the house, near to the path on the way to the river; the cook Tom was sitting down with her; the cook asked Jane to go along with him to the water side; Jane said she did not wish to go; the cook took Jane by the arm and pulled her along; while he had hold of her he called to the waiter and hostler to come along with them; they went; Jane ran on down to the river; the men followed and afterwards returned, apparently out of breath (here the boy imitated to show how they panted or fetched their breath;) the men stopped down by the river side some time before they came back; they went into the kitchen and sat down there some time; Patrick Dolan and William Evans were in the kitchen when Rom the cook, Isaac the waiter, and the hostler returned;' the cook said to Isaac they should find out whether I knew anything about it; if I told they would whip me or throw me into the water; Ellen Binwell stood outside the house and told me to go to bed.

   Ellen Binwell having been called before the jury and addressed in a most impressive manner by the coroner, who desired her to speak the truth, as connected with this awful transaction, as it was known to him that some disclosures had been made by her while she was in gaol.  The witness and prisoner replied, "By my God, I know nothing of the murder."

   Dr. Kemble's testimony closed, the evidence taken before the jury, who retired, and after duly weighing all the circumstances connected with the painful inquiry, gave their verdict as follows:-

   "We find that the deceased, Jane Saunders, came to her death by the rupture of a blood-vessel over the brain at the back of the head, caused by Isaac Lockwood with both his hands throwing her on the ground; that Thomas Gomm and William Taylor were accomplices to the murder of Jane Saunders."

   We are informed that the boy Keo took considerable pains to describe to the jury the exact position of the prisoner, and the situation in which he was standing, and that in every instanced he appeared correct.

   Ellen Binwell is in gaol on a charge of stealing linen belonging to Dr. Kemble, who was residing at the Derwent Hotel with Mr. Hathaway's family.

 The coroner, Thomas Mason, Esq., conducted the inquiry with ability and the utmost patience, suffering during the prolonged inquiry from the effect of a severe fall, having on the Monday evening been thrown from his horse, by which accident he had the misfortune to dislocate his shoulder.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 1 February 1845

  As in Courier, 1 February, above. [The investigation, however, has been revived before the Police Magistrate at New Norfolk, and is adjourned till Monday, in order to obtain the evidence of a shepherd, who., we believe, was at the Derwent Hotel on the night of the allege murder.]


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 1 February 1845


ON Thursday afternoon an inquest was held before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., at the Wharf Wine Vaults, on the body of Thos. Henry Smith.  James Richards deposed that deceased was employed as a seaman on board the cutter Opossum; witness belonged to the Fox.  About half-past five o'clock, P.M., saw deceased go on shore to warm [????] pitch for the carpenter; he remained ashore about half an hour, and on his return appeared to be partially intoxicated.  Witness last saw him in the act of leaning over the gunwale; shortly afterwards, heard the cry of "a man overboard!" One of the Fox's men leaped into a boat and made towards that part of the river where deceased had fallen; before, however, he reached the spot, the body was picked up by some Government hands and conveyed to the shore.  Dr. Porter was immediately sent for, but the deceased was dead; could not say from whence the cry of "a man overboard" proceeded.  William Coulter, another seaman belonging to the same vessel, corroborated the above testimony, but did not see the deceased fall into the river; it was not above five minutes from the time witness heard the cry of "a man overboard," until he saw the body taken out of the river,  Dr. Porter stated that he was sent for to attend the deceased, whom he found lying on his bely in the bottom of a boat -  was of opinion that such a position was highly calculated to cause suffocation; deceased had evidently been in the water but a short time, and but for the injudicious treatment he experienced on being taken out, witness was of opinion that he might have recovered; witness applied the usual remedies without effect.  There being no direct evidence to show in what manner the deceased fell overboard, the jury, under the Coroner's direction, returned a verdict of Found Drowned.


Launceston Examiner, 1 February 1845

INQUEST          . - An inquest was held at Mr. Lukin's on Thursday, upon the body of William Henry Smith, a seaman belonging to the cutter Opossum.  The deceased, in proceeding on board the vessel, slipped off a plank, and fell into the water. .  .  . 


Launceston Advertiser, 7 February n1845

   ACCIDENT. - On Saturday last, a man named William Cooper, many years in the employ of R. Bostock, Esq.,, was found, by the police, on the main road, about a mile out of Campbell Town, in as state of insensibility; he was removed to the watch-house, where Dr. Valentine, the district surgeon, attended him, and discovered that his skull was fractured, and a piece of it broken away; through the opening occasioned by which a portion of the unfortunate man's brain protruded.  He lingered until two o'clock on Sunday afternoon, when he expired.  On Monday last, an inquest was held at the Campbell Town police office, before F. H. Hensowe, Esq., coroner, from the evidence adduced before which it appeared that he had been either thrown or fallen from his horse, on his way home.  The horse was found in the bush on the day after the inquest.  A verdict of accidental death was returned.


Launceston Examiner, 8 February 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was recently held at Evandale upon the body of a child, who died from the effects of opium, administered in error or ignorance for another powder.  The mother stated she procured the compound in Launceston, but there is reason to believe this statement is incorrect. [See Cornwall Chronicle, 5 February; Letter to the Editor, from A CHEMIST, and Cornwall Chronicle, 12 February.]

   Inquest, - On the 20th January an inquest was held at Port Sorell, before C. Meredith, Esquire, coroner, on view of the body of William Probin, a ticket-of-leave man.  It appeared that the deceased over-exerted himself in contending with a fellow-reaper, and became exceedingly hot, in which condition to allay his thirst he plunged his head into a neighbouring spring and drank a quantity of cold water, violent inflammation ensued, and death was the ultimate consequence.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 12 February 1845


   On Monday last, an inquest was held before A. Gardiner, Esq., at the Ship Inn, on view of the body of Thomas Macguuire, a seaman belonging to the Tenasserim.  The case was adjourned until the following day, when it appeared that the deceased had received an injury on his little finger, by a blow from a hammer, which subsequently terminated in tetanus, or lockjaw.  Verdict - Died by the visitation of God.

   Another inquest was held the same day, at the Branch Factory, on the body of Thomas Barnacle, an infant seven months old.  After a careful investigation, the jury returned a verdict, that the deceased "Died from natural causes, accelerated by premature weaning."


Launceston Examiner, 12 February 1845

   INQUEST. - An inquest was held before Capt. Gardiner, at the Ship Inn, on Monday, on view of the body of Joseph M'Way, belonging to the ship Tennasserim, who came to his death under the following extraordinary circumstances.  Decease, on Saturday week last, was assisting a cooper in putting in the head of a cask when he accidentally revived a blow with a hammer upon one of his fingers.  Dr. Haygarth dressed the wound and attended the deceased for two or three days, when finding that the captain of the vessel had not authorised the patient to apply to him he declined to prescribe any further; but recommended M'Way to lose no time   in getting into the hospital.  Deceased called upon Dr. Benson at his private residence, who dressed the finger and instructed the man to call again upon the following day; which, however, he did not do, and Dr. Benson saw no more of him.  It appeared by Dr. Haygarth's testimony, that M'Way called upon him several times after this, and received medical advice.; Dr. Haygarth concluded he had not been able to obtain admission to the hospital, and in giving his evidence adverted to the supposed difficulty.  An impression having then been created that possibly death might have been accelerated for want of due promptitude, the inquest was adjourned until Tuesday, when Dr. Maddox and Dr. Benson were both in attendance.  Dr.  Maddox knew nothing of the case, and Dr. Benson deposed as in evidence above stated.  Dr. Haygarth amputated the finger, and on the day succeeding he expired. The immediate cause of death was lockjaw, occasioned, in the opinion of Dr. Haygarth, from exposure to damp on board the ship in connection with the injury received.  All the medical gentlemen agreed that death resulted from causes wholly independent of the operation; but a dialogue ensued as to the nature and cause of lock-jaw.  Dr. Benson said he could not agree with Dr. Haygarth that lock-jaw was attributable to inflammation of the membranes of the spine.  The latter recommended an examination of the body, but Dr. Maddox remarked that it would be impossible to determine the fact in consequence of the congestion occasioned by the body lying upon its back for a considerable period.  No cause applicable to all cases could be assigned for lock-jaw; the symptoms differed, and no unanimous solution had been adopted by the profession.  This conversation was checked, and one of the jurymen, on delivering the verdict, expressed his opinion that the deceased had suffered from neglect, but upon reconsideration a verdict was unanimously agreed to, that death resulted from lock-jaw, occasioned by natural disease.  The coroner remarked that he had called the medical officers of the hospital for the satisfaction of the jury and the public; but he was aware they had not the power of admitting patients to the hospital unless proper sanction was obtained, and in this case no application had been made by the deceased, or even a wish expressed to gain admission.

INQUEST. - Another inquest was held on Monday, at the Court-house, on the body of a child, who expired at the Factory, and a verdict returned of Died by the visitation of God.


Courier (Hobart), 22 February 1845


   On Thursday, the 6th instant, an inquest was held before John Price, Esq., coroner, at the Lord Melbourne, Melville-street, on the body of Wm., Douglas, Tanner.  From the evidence of Isabella Hilyer it appeared that the deceased was her father, that he was 75 years of age, and of very infirm habits.  John Eager, who lived in the neighbourhood, proved that the old man was sufficiently well at 6 o'clock on the previous evening to feed his dog in the front of his residence.  Peter Horbery swore that as her was going to work in the morning, he saw the deceased lying on the floor of his house, the door open; that finding he was dead, he gave the alarm to the neighbours.  Dr. Bright stated that he had attended the deceased, who for some time past had been in declining health, that he had frequent paralytic seizures, and that in his opinion death was caused by paralysis.  Verdict - Died from natural causes.

   On Tuesday, the 11th instant, an Inquest was held at the female house of correction (Cascade) before John Price, Esq., coroner, on the body of Sarah Leppard.  Sarah Leppard deposed that she was the mother of the deceased child; that it was a fortnight old and of very weakly habits; that it had been attended by Mr. Dermer, surgeon of the establishment, who had paid it every attention she could wish.  Mr. Dermer stated that he had attended the deceased from the 27th January last; that from its birth it had been a very weakly child, of very emaciated appearance, and kept alive solely from the attention it had received at the factory. It died of convulsions. Verdict - Natural causes.

   On Saturday, the 15th instant, an inquest was held at Mr. John Lucas's, North West Bay, before John Pierce, Esq., coroner, on the body of John Harris.  From the evidence of William Watts it appeared that the deceased was, as well as himself, a prisoner of the crown, and in the service of Mr. John Lucas; that on Thursday, the 13th instant, he and the decease were clearing some ground for their master; that whilst they were cross-cutting some timber, a tree near the place they were working, which had been fired by them at its root, fell; that deceased called out that it was falling, but had not time to escape himself; that a limb of it struck him, and that he never spoke afterwards; that he immediately ran for Mr. Lucas, who returned with him in about twenty minutes.  Mr. Richard Lucas deposed to the effect that he had charge, as overseer for his brother, of the deceased; that on the day in question Watts came and informed him of the accident; that he went to the spot directly; that he found the deceased lying as described by the last witness; that the deceased was yet alive, but died in about five minutes afterwards.  Mr. James Raye deposed on oath that he was a legally qualified medical practitioner; that he was called to attend the deceased on the day of the accident; that he had ribs of both sides broken; had no doubt there was considerable internal laceration, and it was his opinion that deceased had come by his death from those injuries, which were such as would be caused by a heavy substance falling upon him.  Verdict - Accidental death.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 25 February 1845

   CORONER'S INQUEST. - On Tuesday last, an inquest was held at the Thatched House Tavern, in Argyle-street, before Mr. Price, and a most respectable jury, touching the death of a pass-holder named Browne, as brickmaker in the employ of Messrs. Meikle, the builders.  As it had been rumoured that the deceased had met with his death in the Harvest House Public-house, at New Town, the landlord and his wife, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, were present at the Inquest, Mr. Macdowell attending on their behalf.  Several witnesses were examined, and it was clearly shown that a fight had taken place, in which the deceased and one or two of his companions took a part; that the deceased either fell or was struck on the lower part of the stomach; it was further shown that Mr. and Mrs. Smith could not have inflicted any injury upon the deceased, as they were on one side of the counter, and Browne was on the other.  Dr. Casey, who had attended the man, and made a post mortem examination, stated that death had been caused by inflammation of the bowels (Peritonitis), and the jury returned a verdict accordingly.  From what we have heard of the case, no blame whatever is attachable to either Mr. or Mrs. Smith.


Launceston Examiner, 4 March 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the Scottish Chief, before Captain Gardiner, upon view of the body of John Warren, a probationer in the employ of Mr. T. Nowlan, near Perth.  On the evening of the 5th February, the servants were awaked by a noise in the room where deceased slept, and proceeding there found him lying upon the floor covered with blood, and upon examination discovered a severe wound upon his throat, evidently inflicted with a razor, which was found near the spot. Dr. Kilgour was fortunately in attendance at Mr. Nowlan's residence, and having sewed up the wound, deceased was removed to the Colonial Hospital, Launceston, where he lingered until the 28th.  When first discovered deceased was incapable of speaking, but indicated his wish to communicate something in writing. Having admitted that the act was his own he was questioned as to his motive, and wrote, "It is the miserable condition of Perth." Whilst in the hospital he repeatedly acknowledged that the wound was inflicted by his own hand, but assigned no other reason than depression of spirits consequent upon his "miserable condition."

SUDDEN DEATH. - A seaman, named George Wood, belonging to the Scout, died suddenly this morning.  He was engaged in his work as usual, and all at once complained of faintness, and expired about twenty minutes afterwards.  The deceased is said to have been a valuable servant.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 4 March 1845


   William Smith, of the Harvest House, at New Town, who was discharged by the verdict of a Coroner's inquest, about three weeks ago, has been again apprehended on suspicion of having occasioned the death of the man Browne.  No fresh evidence, we believe, has been adduce and Smith has been admitted to bail to answer the charge when called on.

   CHILD DROWNED. - Yesterday afternoon, an Inquest was held at Mr. Blackall's public house, the Crown and Anchor, at New Town, touching the death of a little girl, the daughter of Mr. Hugh Currey; it appeared that the little child had fallen into a clay pit or quarry hole, and was thus drowned. - Verdict accordingly.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 5 March 1845


   On Monday last an inquest was held at the Scottish Chief, before A. Gardiner, Esq., coroner, to inquire into the circumstances attending the death of John Warren, a probationer, who destroyed himself by cutting his throat, in a fir of temporary insanity,.

   Dr. Maddox stated that deceased was admitted into the hospital non the 6th ultimo; he was laboring under the effects of a wound inflicted on his throat by a razor; he stated to him that it was his own act, and that he had done it because he was tired of his life and wished to die; the deed was perpetrated in the night; he had been regularly visited by both deponent and Dr. Barnes, and died on the 28th February; he was in a very desponding state of mind previous to his death, and expressed a wish to die; deponent had no doubt whatever that his death was occasioned by the wound inflicted on his throat.

   From the evidence of one of his fellow servants, it appeared that the deceased was in the service of Mr. Nowlan of Perth, and was employed as a cook.  On the night of the 6th ult., between eleven and twelve o'clock, deponent was awakened by a violent knocking in the loft where deceased slept; he called some of his fellow servants, and having procured a light, went to see what was the matter, - he found deceased weltering in his blood, and holding up the blankets to his throat, as if attempting to stay the effusion.  Dr. Kilgour was instantly sent for, and found the deceased lying with his throat cut; - the doctor inquired of him how it had been done, and deceased motioned for pen, ink, and paper; he then wrote something which proved illegible, and was furnished with another piece of paper; - he then wrote down that he had himself cut his throat, because he was weary of his existence. Dr. Kilgour sewed up the wound and administered the necessary remedies; deceased always appeared to be of an unsociable disposition, never taking his meals with the rest of the men, but sitting entirely alone; he stated to witness that whilst in the employ of his former master Mr. Nichols, he had been sentenced to fourteen days solitary confinement on the complaint of the overseer; - that circumstance seemed to have preyed deeply on his mind, and produced a nervous irritation of manner. Whilst being put into the cart which conveyed him to the hospital, he shook hands with Mr. Nowlan's overseer; a razor covered with blood was found by the bed-side; never knew deceased have words with any of the men; he was not on wages with Mr. Nowlan, but was waiting for permanent hire; he had been but four days in the service of that gentleman.  The statement of this witness was corroborated by that of others, but some of the jury not appearing altogether satisfied, the coroner Captain Gardiner adjourned the inquest till the following day, in order to obtain additional evidence.  Upon its resumption, other witnesses testified to the same effect as those previously examined, in consequence of which the jury returned a verdict, that deceased "died from the effect of a wound inflicted on his throat whilst laboring under temporary derangement.


Launceston Examiner, 8 March 1845

   INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Thursday,  .  .  .  On the same day another inquest was held upon the body of a young woman named Ann Smith residing near the wharf, who expired about half an hour after leaving the theatre.  Death resulted from an affection of the heart,

   On Friday an inquest was held upon the body of Thomas Williams, who died in consequence of injuries received whilst fighting with some person unknown.  The inquest was adjourned until this morning, to afford time for further inquiry; we shall furnish the result in our next.

   Another inquest was held on Friday afternoon, at Mr. Heading's, upon the body of a child, who expired suddenly from natural causes, and verdict returned to that effect.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 8 March 1845


   On Thursday last, an inquest was held at the Wharf Wine Vaults, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., coroner, on the body of George Wood, a seaman employed on board the Scout, who died suddenly on Wednesday morning.

   Christopher Gwatkin, deposed that he is master of the above named vessel; yesterday morning while sitting at breakfast intelligence was brought to him that one of the seamen was taken dangerously ill; went upon deck and found deceased sitting upon a chest supported by two of his messmates, and deponent had him immediately conveyed to the quarter deck; he was then placed upon a mattress while deponent bathed his temples with vinegar; he was also persuaded to drink a small quantity of brandy and water, but did not however take more than half a glass-full; sent immediately for Dr. Grant; deceased desired to be placed on the mattress on his left side; he stated to deponent that he had been in a consumption for the last twelve months, he expired in about half an hour afterwards; was quite sensible until within a few minutes of his dissolution.  Deceased had been in deponent's employ about ten years and a half; was a remarkable steady and  well-conducted man, so much so, indeed, that deponent allowed him more wages than was given to any other man on board; the vessel arrived from Port Phillip only the day previous; deceased did not express any wish for medical attendance.

   Dr. Grant merely testified that he was called upon to look at a body, which he found lying on the deck of the brig Scout; deceased was a corpse when deponent saw him; there were no marks of violence upon the body, and deponent was of opinion that the death of deceased was occasioned by natural causes.  The jury found a verdict accordingly.

   The same day an inquest was held at the same place to enquire into the death of Eliza Smith, who expired suddenly about half-past one o'clock, p.m., at her lodgings in St. John-street.

   Margaret Dowling, deposed that she was well acquainted with the deceased, lived in the same house, and occupied an apartment immediately adjoining hers.  Mr. Merchant, the shoemaker, resided next door.  Deceased was about twenty-one years of age, and of remarkably steady and sober habits; she held a ticket of leave.  This morning about half-past one o'clock deceased came to deponent's bed-side and complained of severe illness; she asked deponent to feel how her heart was beating; did so, and found it fluttering with much violence, directly afterwards deceased screamed out for Mrs. Martin, who resides next door; her landlord came up and brought her some hot coffee, before Mrs. Martin came up she asked deponent to go to her bed, and bring her a certain powder, which she said she would find there; deponent however did not succeed in finding it, and directly afterwards Mrs. Martin came up; should say that deceased was perfectly sober at the time of her death, although she had that day been both to the races and the play.

   Margaret Martin deposed to hearing the screams of deceased about the time described by last witness; hurried on her clothes and hastened up stairs; found deceased on her knees in the middle of the floor; on observing deponent, she extended her hands towards her and exclaiming - mother, fell backwards on the floor. Deponent endeavoured to raise her, but found she was dead; medical assistance was sent fort immediately on her being taken ill.

   The evidence of Dr. Grant was to the effect that deceased had long labored under a pulmonary affection, producing palpitation of the heart, and other distressing symptoms. He had no doubt whatever, but that she had expired in the manner previously described.  The jury returned a verdict that the deceased died of palpitation of the heart."

   On the 3rd instant, an inquest was held at Mr. Blackall's public-house, the Crown and Anchor, at New Town, touching the death of a little girl, the daughter of Mr. Hugh Currey; it appeared that the little girl had fallen into a clay-pit, or quarry-hole, and was thus drowned. - Verdict accordingly. - Col. Times.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 11 March 1845

   FATAL ACCIDENT. - It is with great sorrow we have to record the sudden and untimely death of a fine boy, the son of Mr. Prout, the artist,  It appears that Master Prout, aged about eleven years, was playing with his brother near the Creek, in the flat behind Mr. Hodgson's house, at the upper end of Macquarie-street, when a large stone, weighing nearly a hundred weight., was thoughtlessly rolled down the opposite hill by some heedless boys, and, coming in contact with the poor boy's head, fractured his skull causing his death in a very short time.  An inquest will be held to-day on the body, the full particulars of which we shall give in our next.  To render this melancholy event the more poignant to the bereaved mother, Mr. Prout is absent on a professional tour.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 12 March 1845

   MANSLAUGHTER. - The report of the proceedings of the inquest held on view of the body of Thomas Williams, is from its length, unavoidably turned over until Saturday's number, when it shall appear.  A man, named Sampson, is apprehended, and identified as the person who was fighting with Williams when he received the injury, and is remanded for further enquiry. [See issue of 15 March.]


Launceston Examiner, 12 March 1845

INQUEST - MANSLAUGHTER. - An inquest was held on Friday, at the Jolly Butcher's, Charles-street, and by adjournment on Saturday and Monday, to enquire into the death of Thomas Williams.  From the evidence of the several witnesses examined, it appeared that on the evening of Monday, the 3rd instant, a man assaulted Mrs. Williams, the wife of deceased, without any provocation being assigned, and her screams attracted the attention of a female, who informed the deceased, and he, together with others, pursued the man up Wellington-street.  In a few minutes a large concourse had collected, and a fight ensued, which lasted about ten minutes, and decease was then  assisted home complaining of being very much hurt.  Dr. Haygarth was sent for and went to see the man, but as stated by Mrs. Williams and another inmate of the residence, after examining the injury, remarked: he is ruptured, but that is nothing" and refused to render assistance unless he was paid ten shillings.  Mrs. Williams entreated Dr. Haygarth to attend to her husband, but not being able to obtain the required fee, he declined.  Dr. Grant was then sent for, and visited the deceased until the periods of his death, which took place on Wednesday.  All the witnesses declare that they had no knowledge of the man with whom Williams was fighting, and for the purpose of obtaining evidence of his identity the inquest was twice adjourned, but without producing the required information.  The witnesses examined were Mrs. Williams, Hannah Pugh, Ann Page, William Appleby and William Fowler.  The coroner and jury frequently expressed their conviction that the parties were concealing the truth, but neither persuasion nor threats could induce any of them to reveal the name of the delinquent.  Suspicion was attached to a boatman, known as "big Henry," but upon being confronted with some of the witnesses he was not recognised.  Dr. Grant examined the body, and assigned the cause of death to a perforation in the intestines, occasioned by a severe blow.  He also stated that while attending the deceased, the people in the house distinctly told him they knew the party with whom Williams was fighting.  The jury returned a verdict of Manslaughter, against some person or persons unknown; and the coroner expressed a determination to discover the perpetrator, if possible, and also to punish the witnesses for gross prevarication.

   [During the inquest, Mr. Strickland, editor of the Chronicle, who attended to report, evidently under the influence of liquor, was observed to be communicating with one of the jurymen, and reprimanded by the coroner for such impropriety.  A person, named Henry Sampson, the same man that appeared at the inquest, has been apprehended, and remanded to gaol for examination on the charge of manslaughter, the police having since obtained further evidence of his identity.]

   ANOTHER INQUEST. - At the termination of the foregoing inquest, on Friday, the jury adjourned to Mr. Heading's, to view the body of a child which expired on Wednesday, at Dr. Pugh's surgery.  It appeared by the evidence that the child had been brought to town for advice that morning, and was taken to Dr. Pugh's, where it expired after about a quarter of an hour.  The jury were of opinion that death resulted from natural causes; the coroner thought a post mortem examination unnecessary, and with one exception, the jury assented.  Mr. Findlay remarked, that they had assembled to enquire into the cause of death, and without evidence of that cause, he could not conformably return a verdict.  Dr. Grant then examined the body, and testified that there were bruises at the back of the head, but he could not undertake to determine the cause of death without a post mortem.  The jury were still of opinion it was unnecessary, but Mr. Findlay maintained the contrary opinion, strengthened by Dr. Grant's statement, that there were signs of external violence.  A post mortem was then performed, and death attributed to apoplexy, whether occasioned by the external injuries, or other causes, Dr. Grant could not particularly determine.  The jury returned a verdict if, died by the visitation of God.

  [The editor referred to in the former inquest, accompanied the jury to Mr. Heading's, and mistaking the parlour for the tap-room, commenced a voluntary display of pot-house oratory in defence of Dr. Haygarth, which, as will probably appear in the form a  leading article, it is unnecessary to report.  Towards the end of the inquest the editor, whose partial obfuscation was not removed by the adjournment from one public-house to another, addressed a note to Mr. Johnston, recommending the jury "to pass a vote of thanks to their industrious foreman." It may be supposed that the conductor of a public journal ought to have known better; but under certain circumstances, such little indiscretions are but to be wondered at.  The same cause which produced the note conceived from the muddy intellect of the writer that Mr. Johnston was himself the foreman; the juror intended to be insulted was Mr. Findlay, who had taken a prominent part in the investigation.]


Courier (Hobart), 13 March 1845


   An inquest was held at Mr. Martin's, the British Hotel, on the 27th ult., before John Price, Esq., Coroner, touching the death of Josiah Deardon.  It appeared from the evidence of Thomas  Riley that deceased was, on the morning of the 2nd ult., about six o'clock, in Kelly's stables, and, apparently, in health, and that about a quarter of an hour afterwards he found him lying near the stable door insensible and speechless, and that he died a short time afterwards. - Henry Goldsmith corroborated the testimony of Riley in every particular; he also stated that he was alive about six minutes after he was found, and that he had not been seen by any medical man before death. - Mr. Westbrook, Surgeon, of Liverpool-street, stated, that he had been called to deceased shortly after 7 o'clock, and that he was then dead; that there were no marks of violence about the body; that a post mortem examination of it had discovered a rupture of one of the blood vessels of the heart, and that he died from that cause. - Verdict. -Died from natural causes.

   An inquest was held on the 1st instant, by John Price, Esq., Coroner, on the body of Maria Smith, at the House of Correction, Cascade.  Dr. Dermer stated, that he had attended her professionally during the last three years; in fact that she had been in a diseased state ever since she had been in the colony.  He had made an examination of her body; he had found effusion of water into the cavity of the chest, from which she died, and that this was owing to a debilitated condition and a diseased state of the lungs. - Sarah Cray deposed, that she slept in the same ward with deceased, and that on the day before yesterday she got much worse, complaining of pain in her chest; that she vomited blood and corruption during the greater part of the night, and died about 12 o'clock; that she had every attention paid to her during her illness, and was visited daily by the doctor. - Ann Griffiths, the nurse of the hospital, corroborated the testimony of Dr. Dermer and the last witness. - Verdict. - Died from natural causes.

  On the 3rd instant an inquest was held on the body of Mary Ann Curry, aged six years, at the Crown and Anchor, New Town, before John Price, Esq., Coroner.  William Saddler  deposed that he lived at New Town; that he saw deceased alive on the day before in the afternoon, about 5 o'clock; that she was then sitting beside the pond where her dead body was found; that her brother and sister were with her; that shortly afterwards he (Saddler,) being then about ten yards away from the lace, heard the boy Hugh Curry cry out that his sister had fallen into the pond; that he went to them and there saw some of her clothes in the water; that he immediately ran to the father of the child, who went to the pond and searched it for about twenty minutes, but could not find her, but in a quarter of an hour afterwards a man named Donnelow succeeded in getting her body out. - Dr. Officer, Surgeon, of Campbell-street. Stated that he attended the deceased about half-past 6 o'clock, she was apparently dead; he made attempts to restore animation without success; the deceased had all the appearances of having died from drowning. - Mr. Curry, the father of deceased, corroborated the testimony of Mr. Saddler, and said the pond was very deep, considerably beyond his own depth, and without fence. - Thomas Donnelow also gave evidence to the same effect; he thought the body might be under water about twenty minutes. - Verdict - Accidental drowning.

   An inquest was held on the 5th instant, before John Price, Esq., Coroner, on the body of Sarah Dogherty, at the Factory, Cascade.  Ann Griffiths, the nurse of the establishment, deposed that the deceased had been sent to the house of correction, under sentence of six months, for giving birth to an illegitimate child.  She was admitted into the hospital on the 23rd of February for s bowel complaint, and a pain in her chest; she died on the night previous, about eleven o'clock.  She was daily attend by the doctor, and every other attention paid to her. -Dr. Dermer deposed, that he admitted the deceased into the hospital on the 23rd of February; she was suffering from diarrhoea; she died of typhus fever, brought on by the state of the weather and the debilitated state of her constitution, arising from her dissipated life and the constant use of ardent spirits.  He saw her daily, and sometimes more frequently, up to the period of her death. - Verdict, died from natural causes.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 15 March 1845



   AN Inquest was held, on Tuesday last, the 11th of March, at Mr. Dudgeon's Inn, the Britannia, in Macquarie-street, touching the death of Master Frederick Prout, the son of Mr. J. S. Prout, the well-known artist of the town, before Mr. Price, Coroner, and the following Jury, viz. - Mr. Michael Dowson, foreman; Messrs. James Price, W. J. Disher, Samuel Ridler, John Fisher, Henry Downer, and Alexander Bruford.

   Every accommodation was afforded by Mr. Dudgeon for the purpose of the Inquest, and a very commodious apartment was set apart for the occasion.

   The Jury, in the first instance, after being sworn, proceeded to the residence of Mr. Prout, to view the body of the deceased.  There they saw the dead body of a very fine boy, dark haired, and lying, apparently, in the most tranquil sleep of death.  A bruise on the right temple - a slight discoloration of the poor boy's brow  told, too plainly, how death had so suddenly stricken him; there he lay, in the bed he had so often occupied in health and joyousness, - a lifeless, corrupting corpse.

   The Coroner and Jury having "viewed" the body, proceeded to the Inquest room, when the following evidence was adduced:-

   The first witness examined, was an intelligent lad of the name of Bayley; he stated, to the effect, that he was with the deceased last Saturday, playing at the bottom of Stringy-bark Hill, near Mr. Hodgson's house; a noise was heard, coming down the hill, which the boys thought was a cow or a bullock coming down; just after this a large stone  came down the hill, and hit the deceased on the head; the stone hit the deceased on the temple; a man was digging on the hill above; but witness saw no person there.  A man named Robert Pendridge came down, but what he did witness could not say, as he ran to tell Mrs. Prout what had happened; the deceased never spoke after the stone struck him.

   By Mr. Disher. - Witness did not see any person on the hill above when the stoned came down.

   Robert Pendridge, lives in Macquarie-street; on Saturday last he was working in his own ground, which was not far from the spot where the deceased was struck; this was about three o'clock in the afternoon; witness heard a stone rolling down the hill; the hill was very steep; witness heard some boys in the scrub, but could not tell how many, as the scrub was very thick; witness could not know the boys again; the boys ran away as soon as witness hallooed to them, and a man on the hill met them as witness was carrying home the deceased; witness' wife said, that the stone had killed the little boy; she got some water and washed his face; the little boy breathed, and witness carried him to his own home; the deceased  could not speak, the blood was running out of both his ears, and when he coughed, out of his mouth; a man named Moore was there also; witness saw him walk from his hut; deceased was alive when witness took him home; witness saw a stone lying by the deceased, weighing 80 lbs., or more; it was as round stone, and there was a dent in the ground, as if it had been newly removed; the stoner went right into the creek; there was mould on the stone, which was quite fresh; a boy could have raised such a stoner, as three parts of it was out of the ground.  There were some boys rolling stones down the hill in the morning; witness ran after them, and they ran away; witness did not see them afterwards.

   Dr. Bedford attended the deceased; he found him insensible, from concussion of the brain; the deceased never became sensible, neither did he say anything; he died on Sunday morning, at seven o'clock; there was a wound on the right temple, near the ear, the right side of the face was bruised.  That injury, no doubt, caused the boy's death; he died from concussion of the brain, caused by external violence.

   By the Coroner. - Every enquiry was made, as to the boys on the hill, but they could not be discovered.

   William Moore, lived on Mr. Sutcliffe's land near the creek in Macquarie-street; on the day in question, he heard a stone  rattling through the trees, and saw it strike one of three boys who were standing under the hill; when witness saw the boy struck, he ran forward, thinking it was one of his own children; they boys who threw the stone down were in the foot-path above; the stone bounded as it came down the hill; witness hastened to the spot, and saw the deceased and two other boys; witness picked him up, and told one of the other boys to tell the deceased's mother to send for a doctor immediately.  The deceased was afterwards carried home; witness saw no other boys on the hill.

   By Mr. Disher, a Juror. - It was a very frequent occurrence of a Saturday for persons to roll stones down the hill.

  The Coroner observed, that every effort had been made to discover the boys, who were on the hill, but without effect; the jury, therefore, must come to the conclusion, that the deceased came to his death by the stoner, but by whom that stone was thrown, there was no evidence.  The Jury accordingly returned a Verdict to that effect.


 Courier (Hobart), 15 March 1845



   [During his evidence the witness William Moore observed, "it is a frequent practice for boys to 'heave' stones down the hill; sometimes a dozen of them are thus engaged at a time."  We trust this melancholy event we have just recorded will be the means of putting a stop to such dangerous pastimes, whether by boys or adults.  During the numerous visits to Wellington Falls, a few weeks ago, we (Courier) mentioned that several persons narrowly escaped with their lives from the thoughtless conduct of others, in a more elevated situation, amusing themselves by rolling stones down the hill.  If the melancholy death of Master Prout does not act as a warning, no remonstrances of ours would be effectual.]

   On Monday, an Inquest was held before John price, Esq., Coroner, at the house of Mr. Dove, Dog and Partridge, on view of the body of Thomas Burns, a child 15 months old.  It appeared in evidence, that on Sunday week last, the mother of the child permitted it to play on the floor, in front of the fire, on which was a pot of boiling water.  The pan upset, and the child was dreadfully scalded.  Unfortunately, in the agitation of the moment, and in ignorance of the proper treatment to be adopted, the little sufferer was plunged into cold water! The child lingered for about a week.  Verdict - Accidental Death.


Launceston Examiner, 15 March 1845

BRUTAL EXHIBITION. - On Friday morning, early,  . .  . Only a few days previously an inquest was held on the body of an unfortunate being who was killed by a severe blow in the abdomen, received during a street fight, and the jury returned a verdict of manslaughter. .  .  . 


Launceston Advertiser, 21 March 1845

MELANCHOLY ACCIDENT. - Yesterday evening about five o'clock the child of a person named Elmer, residing in Cimitiere-street, was, in the absence of its parents, playing near the fireplace, when its clothes caught fire, and before the accident was discovered by the neighbours, the child was so seriously injured as to render recovery hopeless.  The poor little creature lingered until twelve o'clock last night, when it expired.  An inquest will be held to-morrow.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 22 March 1845

CHILD BURNT TO DEATH. -A fine little girl, aged 7 years, residing in Cimitier-street, during the absence of its parents, on Thursday afternoon, was so seriously burnt, that she expired the same evening. It appeared that she was in the act of reaching something off the mantle-piece, when her clothes coming in contact with the fire, she was envelope in flamed immediately, and before assistance could be procured, she was so much injured that death was the result.  An inquest was held this day, at the Cornwall Hotel, by P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., (who in the absence of A. Gardiner, acted as Coroner), and a respectable jury, when after hearing the evidence, a verdict of Accidental death was returned.


Courier (Hobart), 27 March 1845


INQUEST. - CAUTION TO SPORTSMEN.- On Tuesday last, John Price, Esq., Coroner, proceeded to North West Bay, and held an inquest on the body of William Wood, a young man, who, it appeared in evidence, had come by his death under the following circumstances:-

   The deceased, o Monday night last, in company with John M'Donald and seven other young men (all of whom were companions, and live in the same neighbourhood,) to enjoy the sport of shooting.  While in the enjoyment and pursuit of their game, the deceased received in his right temple the entire charge of swan shot by the discharge of the gun in the hands of John M'Donald.  It was clearly proved that the discharge of the gun was purely accidental, whilst the party were passing through the scrub.  Nothing could exceed the deep feelings of regret evinced by the whole party, and especially of the young man by whose hands his companion had fallen.  The jury returned a verdict in accordance with the circumstances we have related, and which was, substantially, a verdict of accidental death.  The whole of the party are residents at North West Bay or its immediate vicinity.


Launceston Examiner, 29 March 1845

THE SKELETON. - More detailed information has been received respecting the discovery of a skeleton mentioned in our last.  The remains were found by some of the Campbell Town police in an opening of the Western Tiers, difficult of access, and surrounded with scrub. The skeleton was perfect, but it cannot be accurately determined how long since the hand of death consigned the being to his rude burial-place.  From appearances, it is supposed two or three years must have elapsed.  The feet were covered with boots apparently but little worn; under the back was a lady's crape shawl, and lying near, shreds of apparel resembling fustian, with metal buttons. Two double-barrelled percussion fowling-pieces were near the spot, upon one of which is the name of John M'Connell, Hobart; aw horse-pistol was also found with the name of Kenham engraved on it.  The height of the skeleton, five feet nine inchers; the oval head, long visage, and high projecting forehead, agree precisely with the description of the notorious John Fisher, the companion of Beard, whose career in the bush is still fresh in the memory of many settlers.  Neither of these daring and intrepid outlaws have been heard of for some years.  Upon minute examination, there appears to have been a wound inflicted upon one side of the body, and it has been conjectured, taking all the circumstances in consideration, that the remains are those of Fisher.


Launceston Examiner, 9 April 1845

SUDDEN DEATH. - A man in the service of Mr. Brugh, over the bridge, was found dead in his bed on Tuesday morning.  His companion was sleeping with him, and in attempting to awake him discovered that life was extinct.  An inquest will be held to-morrow.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 12 April 1845



   On Thursday last, an Inquest was held at Mr. Bastian's Inn, the Tasmanian, in Campbell-street, before Mr. Price, Coroner for Hobart Town, and a highly respectable Jury, to enquire into the cause of the death of a man, named John Dakin, who was shot on Tuesday night by Mr. Livingstone, Mr. Tennant's clerk, while committing a burglary in the Stores of that gentleman, on the Old Wharf.  The following were the Jurors empannelled, viz.:- Messrs. Tegg, (Foreman), M'Ewan, Winter, John Lewis, Michael Clarke, Thomas Hamilton, and ---- Watkins.

   The Jury, having been sworn, proceeded to the Colonial Hospital to view the body of the deceased, where they saw a powerfully-made man lying dead, from a gun-shot wound in the right arm-pit; they then, at the suggestion of the Coroner, repaired to Mr. Tennent's Stores, to inspect the premises, where every facility was afforded by that gentleman and his employe, in explanation of the manner in which the fatal occurrence took place; after a minute inspection, they returned to the Inquest Room, where the following evidence was taken, which will afford the full particulars of the case.

   John Wooledge, a boatman, belonging to the craft Ellen, stated, that he knew the deceased, John (Jonathan) Dakin; he last saw him alive on Tuesday evening, about seven o'clock, when he left the New Wharf in his own boat, the Isabella, accompanied by an old man; that man witness had yesterday seen in the Gaol; he was  commonly called :Old Billy, the Carpenter;" but he was pointed out to witness as William Grant; the deceased and Grant left the Wharf together, but witness did not know which way they went; they did not tell witness where they were going.

   John Quinn, a servant of Mr. Tennent, worked in the stores; on Tuesday, 17 bags of wheat were placed by the hay in the Old Store, and on Wednesday morning witness found that [??] of the bags had been removed into the stable, close by the window; the outer door of the stores was shut, but not locked nor bolted, when witness left on Tuesday evening about 5 o'clock - at that time the stable window was open, and witness did not shut it; he left the storeman (Byrne) in the store.  When witness came back the next morning at 8 o'clock, he found 11 bags of wheat removed, close by the stable window; that was not a usual place to put wheat, and witness had never before seen any there; the window looked out upon the water, from which it was distant about six yards.

   By a Juror (Mr. Watkins). - It was the duty of the storeman to see the doors and windows were fastened.

   John Byrne, storeman to Mr.; Tennant, left the store about half-past 5, on Tuesday afternoon; he bolted the stable window before he left, and locked the outer door, giving the key to Mr. Livngstone; he left everything properly and safely secured.

   Constable Thomas Grant, was on duty at the Old Wharf on the night in question; about half-past nine o'clock, being opposite the Shades Tavern, he heard a  report of fire-arms, and cries for assistance; running to the spot, he found Mr. Livingstone, with a pistol in his hand; Mr. L. pointed to the water-side, and said, - "See, there he goes!" This man, witness apprehended; he was William Grant, now in gaol; witness saw a boat put off from close to the window of Mr. Tennent's store; the window  was open; after witness had secured Grant, Mr. Livingstone told him, that he (Mr. L.) had shot the man who put off in the boat, when witness called out for the Guard-boat, and it came up directly; some one on shore now said, that the boat had gone towards the battery, and the Guard-boat pulled in that direction; about five minutes after witness heard groans proceeding from a small cutter fifty or sixty yards from the shore; witness called for another boat, which was promptly brought by Mr. Joseph Beaumont, who went to the cutter, and brought the deceased on shore; he was then alive, and bleeding a little from under his right arm; he did not speak any distinct words; Dr. Crook was sent for, and on his arrival, in about ten minutes, he pronounced the man to be dying;  The witness went on to state, that having taken Grant to the watch-house, he returned and examined Tennent's stores, when he found that one of the boards had been removed on the outside, so as to enabler a person to push back the bolt of the window, which was a wooden one; he also described the position of the eleven bags of wheat, which had been removed, and stated further, that he went with constable Frandella on board the cutter, and saw marks of blood on its side, and on a bed in the forecastle.


   Mr. Brookes, coxswain of the Guard-boat, corroborated the evidence of constable Grant in such points as related to his conduct in the matter; he also stated, that he had heard the report, and seen the flash of a gun or pistol, followed by loud cries of "robberies!"  On his return from a fruitless pursuit towards the Battery, Mr. Brookes found Mr. Joseph Beaumont and another person taking John Dakin out of the Isabella cutter; he stated also, that after some person on shore had directed him to pull towards the Battery, the deceased, as he (witness) passed the cutter, also directed him in the same manner, speaking at the same time very distinctly; it d not exceed, at the ultimo, forty minutes since witness saw the man, and the man died.

   Mr. Joseph Thomas Beaumont, of the Old Wharf, stated, that hearing cries for assistance, he hastened towards the spot from which they issued; proceeding towards Mr. Tennent's store, witness met Mr. Livingstone and a constable, with a man (Grant) in custody; Mr. Livingstone said, that there was a man wounded, and that he (Mr. L.) wanted assistance; witness then saw a dingy working towards a small cutter; witness called for the Guard-boat, and went to the cutter, where he heard a man calling of mercy.;  Mr. Livingstone  said, he had shot the man in self-defence, and that the man had going away in as dingy.  On going to the Isabella, witness found the deceased on board; he was standing with his back against the gunwale; he asked witness what he wanted there? and said, "It's all right." Witness said, "You are the man I want," and caught hold of his right arm, when her groaned.  Mr. Beaumont here explained, that, ordering the man into the boat, he found he could not move without assistance; he was accordingly assisted.  Mr. Beaumont also stated, that when he saw the deceased on board the cutter, he was undressed all but his shirt and trowsers, the latter hanging about his heels; the deceased, altho09ugh in a dying state, endeavoured to "bounce" Mr. Beaumont that he was not the man engaged in the concern; witness took him on shore, where he shortly afterwards expired.

  Mr. Tennent was called to prove the employment of Mr. Livingstone as his confidential clerk and as having charge of his stores.

   Dr. Crook proved Dakin's death to have been caused by a gun-shot wound, which penetrated the upper portion of the right and left lobes of the lungs, passing behind the large blood-vessels and the windpipe; the ball, having then traversed the posterior part of the chest, lodged against the third rib on the left side; such a wound was necessarily mortal.  Dr. Crook produced the bullet, which he found in the chest of the deceased; it was a leaden bullet, not so large as an ordinary marble.

   By a Juror. - Mr. Lewis. - The impression upon witness's mind was, that the shot must have been fired at not less than two yards' distance, as the clothes of the deceased were not stained or scorched by the powder.

   In answer to a question from the Coroner, Dr. Crook replied, that he should consider the deceased to have been about forty years of age.  He held a Ticket-of-Leave.  Dr. Crook produced 1s. 4d, in money, and a market ticket, which had been found on the person of the deceased.

   Mr. Livingstone was here called upon by the Coroner, who said that it would be necessary to have him examined, but he need not answer any questions that he thought might injure him.  Mr. Livingstone very promptly replied, that he was most anxious to explain all that he knew about this unhappy affair, and would make his statement accordingly.  This proceeding having been assented to, Mr. Livingstone proceeded as follows- I am clerk to Mr. Tennent at the Old Wharf; on Thursday night, at rather more than half-past nine, I came to the store for the purpose of sleeping, as usual; went into the store, I walked around, as was my usual custom, to see that the premises were all safe.  Upon going round the side of the front store, I observed the stable window open; about five o'clock that window was shit, before I went away; I had a pistol in my hand on half-cock; I cocked it, and went up to the windows; I stood for a few minutes and listened, but heard nothing; I then pout the hammer down upon the nipple, feeling convinced that the robbers had gone; I then shut the window and proceeded to Mr. Harper's and knocked at the door; having done so, I heard the window of the stable creak; I rushed up, presented my pistol, and cried out, "I'll shoot you, if you stir!" A man then made his appearance at the stable window from the inside, uttered some shouts of defiance, and jumped out.  I retreated a few steps, and feeling he was going to rush me, I snapped my pistol at him, and at the same time observed the head of another [top liner of column missing] something like a handkerchief round his head; I now retreated still further, and cocked my pistol again; the man who first made his appearance still advanced, and made a stumble, upon which I fired at him; having no other pistol I ran on the wharf and cried for assistance, when constable Grant came to  me; the pistol was loaded with powder and ball; I saw that some bags of wheat had been removed.

   By a Juror - Mr. Lewis. - I called for assistance till I shot the man; I am aware that there is a constable on the wharf, but he is not always at hand.

   By the Coroner. - A very short time elapsed after I first saw the man at the window, and he being shot - not more than a minute or two.

   By a Juror - Mr. Watkins, - I passed a constable at the Treasury, but no nearer.  I saw no other person till I saw the man at the stable window.

   By Mr. Winter. - Mr. Tennent's stores have been robbed before; once on Christmas day, and on last Friday week; I never slept without my pistol at my head; I always carried a pistol about me, as I was fearful the key of the store might be demanded of me.

   By the Foreman. - I was certainly in fear of the man as he advanced and considerably excited; had I seen the man's face, I do not think I should have fired, but ran away, as I have since found that he had been an old servant of my father for two years and a half; he must have known that I was in the store, and knowing this he would have supposed that I knew him, and probably have killed me, to prevent detection.

   By the Coroner. - The deceased was about two yarsd from the water's edge when I fired.

   The evidence being exhausted, the Coroner briefly addressed the jury, explaining to them the law of the case.  Here it was clear that a burglary had been committed, and every person was perfectly justified in protecting his master's property, and in using every effort to capture the offender.  From the evidence that had been adduced, he considered that the jury could come to no other conclusion but that Mr. Livingstone was perfectly justified in shooting the deceased.  The jury therefore immediately returned a verdict of Justifiable Homicide.

[See also Colonial Times, 15 April: THE BURGLARY AT MR. TENNENT'S STORES.]



   We have heard of only one serious, and that a fatal accident; it occurred on Wednesday evening, when a poor blind man named John Williams, who was being led by a female, said to be in liquor, was run over near the Lame Horse, by the Telegraph Coach, and killed on the spot; no blame, however, is in anyway attachable to the driver.


Cornwall Chronicled (Launceston), 12 April 1845


   An Inquest was held on Thursday, the 10th instant, at the house of Mr. Jones, on the George Town Road,  before William Henry Breton, Esq., Police Magistrate and Coroner (in the absence of Captain Gardiner), on view of the body of James Coward.  It appeared, in evidence, that the deceased resided vin a hut with a man named Belcher,  on the farm of Mr. Brock, and that, on Wednesday, both men had been in town drinking -- that they left town in a state of intoxication, and had afterwards drank - and had reached their house in a state o unconsciousness.  - Dr. Grant gave evidence on a post mortem examination of the body -- that deceased had been run over by the wheels of a cart or dray, and had thereby received injuries which caused his death.  Belcher could not explain the particulars of the accident; he found deceased on his back during the night dead. The jury returned the following verdict "Died from the effect of injuries received, but by what means the injuries were inflicted here is no evidence to show."

ANOTHER INQUEST was held on Friday, 11th instant, before the same gentleman, on view of the body of Julia Barns, who died in the House if Correction, on the day previous.  Evidence was brought forward to prove to the satisfaction of the jury, that deceased had received every attention from the Colonial Surgeon during a long illness in the establishment, and that she died from the effects of intoxication. Verdict - Died by the visitation of God from inflammation of the liver.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 15 April 1845]

CORONER'S INQUEST. - THE LATE MR. G. WHITBY. - Yesterday, a highly respectable jury was impanelled to enquire into the melancholy death of Mr. George Whitby, at the New Wharf.  Evidence was adduced which proved the correctness of the statement in our last number, and as verdict of Accidental Death was returned; no blame, whatever, as we have already stated, being attributable to anyone.  Indeed, we think that Mr. Whitby himself, previously to his death, more than once declared that the accident was occasioned only by himself.


Launceston Examiner, 16 April 1845

   Mr. George Whitby, if the Whalers' Return, had gone in a boat to Betsey's island, in company with Mr. Williamson, the ship-builder, Mr. Hunter, of the New Wharf, and Mr. Frederick Lovett. Preparing to return from the island, Mr. Whitby had taken his seat in the stern-sheets of the boat, nearly opposite the  muzzled of a piece which lay along the thwarts, and, in endeavouring to get a dog on board, by some unfortunate accident the gun went off, and the charge passed through Mr. Whitby's knee. This morning his leg was amputated, high upon the thigh, by Dr. Crowther, in the presence of Dr. Officer and other medical gentlemen. Sincerely do we regret to state that the greatest fears are entertained for the recovery of Mr. Whitby. - Colonial Times.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 16 April 1845


ON Monday last, an inquest was held at the Scottish Chief, Wellington-street, to inquire into the death of Thomas Bray, who expired in the Colonial Hospital, on the 13th instant.  The evidence of Dr. Maddox was to the effect that on the 3rd of the present month he was called upon to attend the deceased, a prisoner awaiting his trial in her Majesty's gaol  Deponent found him ill of a fever, and therefore had him removed to an open cell apart from the rest of the men, until a bed became vacant for him in the hospital;  shortly after his removal he expired; he had been duly attended to during the whole of his illness - his death was occasioned by fever.  Verdict accordingly. [See also, Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 26 April.]

   Yesterday an inquest was held at the Golden Lion, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., on view of the body of John Duncan, who expired at an early hour on Monday morning last.  It appeared from the evidence of a person named Bean, that deceased, who had formerly been employed as a seaman on board the Minerva, died in his house.  He had complained to witness some time ago that he had caught a severe cold whilst at Portland Bay, and that the malady had hung about him ever since.  Believed that he had applied to Dr. Pugh upon the subject, and had been under his care.  A few days ago he stated to witness that he then believed himself to be sufficiently convalescent to warrant a return to his ordinary occupation.  He accordingly proceeded to the East Tamar, where he had engaged to repair a boat for Dr. Gaunt, but was brought back oin Sunday night last, by two men in a very exhausted state.  Witness, during the day, went twice to the residence of Messrs. Pugh and Grant, but they were neither of them at home.  Yesterday, about one o'clock, a.m., deceased became so ill that witness rose to attend upon him; he found him sitting upright on the sofa, but he did not seem conscious of witness' presence.   Witness went into the yard to fetch a billet of wood, and, on his return, observed the deceased to be foaming at the mouth, and ran off immediately for the doctor.  Dr. Pugh, on his arrival, pronounced him to be dead.

   The Coroner here stated to the jury that, if they had any doubt whatever concerning the cause of death, he would forthwith adjourn the inquest in order to afford time for a post mortem examination.

   The foreman remarked that he did not consider the proceeding at all necessary.  The jury would be content with the doctor's opinion upon the subject.  There did not appear to be anything in the slightest degree suspicious in the death of the deceased, and that of course was the chief subject of their enquiry.

   The evidence of Dr. Pugh corroborated that of the last witness. Deceased placed himself under his care about a month ago, at which time he was suffering severely from a gathering in the ear, occasioned moist probably, by a cold; was of opinion, but could not swear to the fact in the absence of a post mortem examination, that deceased died from inflammation of the brain.  Verdict - Died from natural causes.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 19 April 1845

CORONERS' INQUEST ON A SOLDIER. - On Monday last an Inquest was held before Mr. Price and a respectable Jury, at Mr. Webber's Public House, the Traveller's Hone, in Goulburn-street, to enquire into the death of a soldier of the 51st regiment, named Charles Parker, who died suddenly in the house in question on the previous Saturday evening.  It appeared that the deceased came to Mr. Webber's house about six o'clock, in company with two of his comrades; the latter called for a pot of beer which they drank, Parker taking none of the drink.  A short time afterwards, the deceased conversed with Mr. Webber at the Bar, and then went in to the Tap-rom, and, in about a quarter of an hour afterwards, he fell down dead.  Dr. Belcher, who examine the body, explained the cause of the man's death, which was occasioned by the rupture of one of the large blood vessels in the chest, which had been affected for some time with aneurism.  The Coroner, at the unsolicited suggestion of the foreman - Mr. Robe, the Watchmaker, - thought proper to reprimand Mr. Webber for some allege misconduct in the matter.  This, we think, was not fair, neither was it just; for the evidence adduced was completely ex parte, and Mr. Webber had witnesses in attendance, who would have entirely exculpated him from any blame in the case.  Mr. Robe, in our opinion, made himself somewhat too officious; but, bring a teetotaller, he, doubtless, considered himself justified in giving expression to his virtuous indignation at the very circumstance of a man dying suddenly in a public house; but Mr. Robe and the Coroner too, ought to bear in mind, that Mr. Webber's character as a publican is quite as precious to him as may be that of either of the personages to whom we have alluded.  Ewe have known Mr. Webber for nearly four years, and, during the whole of that period, he has never been complained of by the Police, for any misconduct as a publican.  It is quite true, that the locality of the Traveler's Home is not one of the most polished or fashionable in Hobart Town; so much the greater credit, say we, to Mr. Webber, for keeping his house so respectable.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 22 April 1845

To the Editor of the Colonial Times.

   SIR, - In your paper of Saturday last, I saw an article head - "Coroner's Inquest on a Soldier," casting some blame on me for too much officiousness on that occasion, which I should not have noticed if the statements were true.  It is stated there, that the deceased had no drink, which is contrary to the evidence given by one of the witnesses.  I think it right, therefore, to give the facts of the case, which are these:-

   Three soldiers were in Mr. Webber's, in Goulburn-street, quite drunk, and called for some beer; Mr. Webber gave them a pot.  Parker, the deceased, took part; and, while sitting in the tap-room, he fell from his seat twice - in one of his falls, he severely cut his forehead above the eyebrow, which the Jurors saw.  Some questions arose amongst them whether his death was not hastened by the severity of the fall, and the excitement caused by the liquor he had taken, which questions were asked of the Doctor by me, who said it might have hastened his death, but was not the immediate cause - it being a rupture of one of the large blood-vessels.  The verdict was given accordingly - Died by the Visitation of God, while in a state of Drunkenness.  I still believe, as I then expressed, that the landlord of the house was highly censurable for his giving men more drink when incapable standing or sitting, which was the opinion of the Coroner; and who referred Mr. Webber to the Act in reference thereto.  If I acted officious, I trust to be forgiven, as I acted conscientiously.  I am, Sir, &c., J. ROBE.


Courier (Hobart), 29 April 1845

DREADFUL SUICIDE. - An inquest was held yesterday, at the Seven Stars public-house, upon the body of Mr. G. Guest.  It appeared in evidence that from excessive drunkenness the deceased had become deranged, and had been only sane at intervals for some years past.  On Sunday, deceased, about 4 o'clock in the afternoon, got up from his bed and went into the kitchen and selected a knife, which he sharpened on the bench and then drew it across his throat.  Mrs. Guest called for help and seized the knife which she held until deceased fell on the floor. Dr. Officer was very shortly afterwards called in, but deceased was quite dead, lying with his face on the floor, with his throat cut from ear to ear.   Verdict - The deceasde4d cut his throat in a temporary fit of insanity.  The folly of a witness, Thomas Salters, conduct, in running away for help instead of staying with Mrs. Guest and getting the knife away from the deceased, was deservedly reprehended by the Coroner.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 29 April 1845


   An inquest was held yesterday afternoon, before J. Price, Esq., Coroner, and a very respectable jury, to enquire into the death of Mr. George Guest: the inquest was held at the Seven Stars, adjoining the residence of the deceased, before the following jurors: - Messrs. Lindsay (foreman), Brock,  Short, Jun., Lucas, J. Lewis, Ulmer and Salter.

The body presented a most frightful spectacle, the head being nearly severed from the body, and the clothed actually saturated with blood; the apartment also, on the floor of which the body was lying, was covered with blood.

   Thomas Salter, in the service of Mr. Thomas Lucas, after deposing to the identity of the deceased, stated, that he heard Mr. Guest sharpen a knife, between 3 and 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon; he came out of an inner rom; Mrs. Guest cried out to witness, George, he is going to cut my throat;'" meaning that her husband was going to do so; witness smiled, and said, "Not him, he won't cut your throat."  Mrs. Guest then said, "Oh! God! He is going to cut his own throat."  The witness, then, in a discursive manner described that both me and Mrs. Guest ran to him and held his arm, but previously to this the deceased had "made a gash in his neck, and blood was pouring through."  The deceased drew a large knife across the right side of his throat.  Mrs. Guest then called to some person to go for assistance;, and amongst others, to the witness; witness was absent about half a minute, and on his return saw the deceased in the act of falling; his throat was then cut, and this head nearly off; the deceased appeared to be sober, but Mrs. Guest was not; witness was quite sober, having just done dinner.

   The Coroner. - What made you not take the knife from Guest?  I never heard of such a thing in my life; leaving a man with his arm uplifted and trying to cut his throat, with a drunken woman! I look upon your conduct as most infamous.

   William further stated, that he had heard no quarrel that day; but on the night previous the deceased was running over the top of the houses, "like a madman as he was," talking to himself.

   Dr. Officer stated, to the effect, that he was yesterday called in to the deceased, about 4 o'clock in the afternoon; he was then lying on the floor on his face quite dead; on turning him over, witness found an enormous wound in his throat, completely dividing the large blood-vessels, down to the spine; the wound was completely centrical, and the knife was lying on his left side; it was a common table0knife.  (It was produced, crusted with blood, and from its make, great force must have been used; the knife had evidently been but recently sharpened.)

   Dr. Officer said, he had seen many throats cut, but he never saw so frightful a case as the present; the deceased was quite insane, induced by drink, and had been so at intervals, for several years.  The Doctor had no doubt whatever that the act was one of self-destruction; his wife's hands were cut in trying to get the knife from him; witness had frequently advised his removal from the vicinity of the public-house, as when kept from drink he was rational enough.  The wound was about three inches deep, and about six inches in length.

   Janet Munro, was at the deceased's house yesterday afternoon; Mr.  Guest was in bed, from which he rose and came into the kitchen, but did not speak; he went to the drawer and took out a knife, which he sharpened on the grate.  The witness here described, as did the witness Salter, the manner in which the deceased cut his throat; he kept the knife till he fell, and then the knife "sped away from him."  Witness said, she could not say that she saw the man Salter take hold of Guest's arm, but she saw him get hold of Mrs. Guest; Salter then ran out, and witness also; but before she went, Guest fell down, as did likewise Mrs. Guest, and both rolled together on the floor, covered with blood; Guest had cut his throat before Salter ran out, and when he came back they were rolling on the ground together; witness saw no drink by either of them after she came, but Dr. Officer said, in the morning, that Guest had been drinking, and Mrs. Guest acknowledged that she had given him some rum and water, for the horrors, or something.

   Mrs. Guest was not examined, as she was in such a state of intoxication, as to tender any testimony from her useless.

   The deceased was about 53 years of age.

   There being no doubt that the decease committed the act while in a state of insanity, a Verdict was returned accordingly.


Launceston Examiner, 30 April 1845

FATAL ACCIDENT. -An inquest was held on Monday morning, at the Golden Lion, Williams-street, upon the body of a person named Henry Goodhead, a mariner, in the employ of Mr. Fawns.  From the evidence it appeared that on the preceding Tuesday the deceased retired to rest slightly under the influence of liquor, and it is supposed having occasion to get up during the night, fell through the opening in the  floor into the kitchen underneath, a depth of about seven feet.  Serious and fatal injuries were sustained by the fall, the skull having been fractured, and several blood-vessels broken. Dr. Grant attended the deceased, who lingered until Saturday.  The jury returned a verdict of Accidental death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 30 April 1845

INQUESTS. - On Monday last an inquest was held before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., on the body of a man named Goodhead, who came to his death under the following circumstances.  Deceased was in the employment of Mr. Fawns, the brewer; and although not by any means a man of intemperate habits, he returned home on Saturday night, partially intoxicated.  About six o'clock he went to bed, in a loft over the kitchen, where two of his fellow-servants were also in the habit of sleeping.   One end of the loft being open, it is supposed that deceased rose in his sleep, and fell headlong into the kitchen. His fellow-servants, being awakened by the noise, went to his assistance, and found him in a state of insensibility, bleeding profusely from the head and ears.  Dr. Grant was sent for, but deceased expired shortly after his arrival.  It was subsequently ascertained that, in falling, the head of deceased had come in contact with a block of wood, whereby his skull was fractured.  Captain Gardiner severely censured the practice of allowing men to sleep in such dangerous situations.  Verdict, - Accidental Death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 3 May 1845


ON Wednesday last, an Inquest was held before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., at the Sir George Arthur, Inn, on view of the body of William Elliott.  The evidence taken was to the following effect:- William Meek, a fellow servant of deceased, stated that he is in the service of Mr. John Knight; on the night of Monday last he was sleeping in the coach house, when he was suddenly awakened and discovered that the place was full of smoke; in getting out of bed, he perceived that the loft above him was on fire, and becoming immediately alarmed for the safety of his fellow servant, who was in the habit of sleeping therein, witness ran up the ladder and endeavoured to awaken him by calling him repeatedly by his name; the only answer he received was a groan apparently issuing from the burning loft.  The flames now spread with such rapidity that witness was compelled to descent, at first comforting himself with the reflection that he might have been deceived in respect of what he had at first taken for a groan, and that deceased who had gone to town that evening might not perhaps have returned.  At length, however, the loft fell in, and then witness assisted in drawing out from amongst the burning embers the body of a man destitute of either head, arms, or legs; had every reason to believe that it was the body of William Elliott.  The rest of the evidence went to show that the conflagration spread with such extraordinary violence, that no human effort could have availed to save any person sleeping in the loft, after once the flames broke out.  The body was principally identified from a knife having been borrowed that morning by a neighbour from deceased, which knife was afterwards found close to the body of deceased.  A glazier's diamond was also discovered near the same spot, and deceased was by trade a glazier.  The jury returned a verdict of accidental death.

   We must not omit to state that the accident is said to have arisen from a practice which deceased had of smoking in bed - a very dangerous one at any time, but more especially so in cases where the party so indulging himself, is occasionally addicted to drinking.  There were four horses in the stable at the time, but as the fire burnt, the roper by which they were tethered the poor animals rushed out of their own accord.  .   .

   An inquest was held on Friday last, at the Queen's Arms, Harrington-street, kept by Thomas Aherne, on view of the body of a man named John M'Pherson.  Deceased became free on Sunday, the 13th instant, and had been for some time prior to his death in an ailing and delicate state of health.  He went to bed on the preceding evening, complaining of being very unwell, and on the following morning, about six o'clock, a man who slept in the same room with him, was awoke by the difficulty of breathing  experienced by the deceased.  On going to him he suspected deceased was in a fit, and as he was frequently subject to them, tho9ught he would soon recover, but he died in a few minutes afterwards.  On a post mortem examination taking place, death was found to have arisen from a spasm of the heart, and a verdict of died by the visitation of God returned. - H. T. Courier.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 7 May 1845

DEATH FROM IMPRISONMENT. - Mr. William Farrell, many years a butcher in this city, died on Saturday morning last at Kangaroo Point, where he had recently kept the inn, formerly Mr. Buchanan's, and having become insolvent had been imprisoned for several months under the Act.  His health declined from the commencement of the incarceration; and when he was released, he was so nearly dead that the event took place within a week after his liberation.  So far was he from having possessed money, that his widow is left in a state of the most wretched destitution, and he was buried by the subscription of the inhabitants of Kangaroo Point, Mr. Turnbull, a blacksmith there, who had generously received him on his quitting the gaol, in whose cottage he died, his only request being the gratification arising  from the  [??????] of humanity. - Murray's Review.


Launceston Examiner, 10 May 1845


   An inquest was held at the Waterman's Arms, Liverpool-street, before J. Price, Esq., coroner, on Wednesday last, to inquire into the cause of the death of a female named Mary Ann Sullivan.  It appeared that her husband left home early on the morning of the 29th ult.  On his return home he found his wife severely burnt, but sufficiently sensible to account for the occurrence, which she did by saying she was in the act of stooping over the fire, when she fell into a fit, and her clothes took fire. - Advertiser.


Launceston Advertiser, 16 May 1845

SUDDEN DEATH. - An inquest was held on Wednesday, at the Edinburgh Castle, on the body of Mr. James Miller, sen., father of Mr. Miller the confectioner, who had fallen down the previous day in a fit of apoplexy, and soon after expired.  It appears that for a long time past, the deceased, who was advanced in years, had been suffering from great debility.  Verdict - Died by the visitation of God.


 Launceston Examiner, 21 May 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the Scottish Chiefs, On Monday, upon the body of a male child about four months old, belonging to Mrs. Walbourne.  The child had not been christened.  The jury returned a verdict of found dead, suspected to be suffocated, in accordance with the testimony, which proved that the child was sleeping in the same bed with its mother, and in the morning was discovered to be dead.  In many instances, such deaths occur from carelessness.  Instead of nursing the child, and placing it in a convenient position, it is allowed to lie on the arms of the nurse, who in sleep forgets her charge.


   Ewe have just heard of another murder at Port Arthur, which occurred on Monday last.  The unfortunate victim was a man named Mende, the overseer of the shirt-makers, who was stabbed to the heart by a man named Gardiner, while in the act of stooping down to blow the fire.  So efficiently was the act done, that the poor man immediately expired. - Colonial Times.


Launceston Examiner, 23 May 1845

CASE OF SUFFOCATION. -On Monday an inquest was held at the Scottish Chief, Wellington-street, to enquire into the death of a male child, four months old.  From the evidenced it appeared that Mrs. Walbourne, the mother of the child, who lives in the house of Mrs. Watts, Canning-street, retired about half-past ten o'clock on =Sunday night, with her child, who was then well and lively, but who soon after became restless and uneasy and did not sleep at all during the early part of the night.  Towards morning the mother put it to the breast, and soon after both went to sleep; the mother awoke about 7 o'clock, thought the child lay heavy on her, and on examination found it was dead. She immediately called for assistance, when Mr. Watts, the landlord, directly sent for Mr. Pugh, the surgeon, who soon after arrived and found the child quite dead.  From the position the mother described the child to be lying in, he had no doubt it had been suffocated. It was proved that the mother had always behaved with uniform kindness to the child.  The coroner then briefly summed up, telling the jury there could not be any doubt as to what verdict they should return, and after a few minutes; consultation, the jury brought in a verdict of Fo0und dead, supposed to have been suffocated.  The mother of the child was then called in by the coroner, when he told her that he understood reports prejudicial to her had been circulated respecting the death of her infant.  He believed them to be entirely unfounded.  He had paid the greatest attention to the evidence, and there was nothing whatever in it to induce even a supposition that the child had met its death in any other way than had been returned by the jury.


Courier (Hobart), 29 May 1845

DEATH BY FIRE-ARMS. - Mr. Peet, the District Constable at Kangaroo Point, yesterday met his death from a gun-shot wound; being alone, the manner in which the painful accident occurred is a mystery.  An inquest on the body will be held at Richmond to-morrow, before the coroner, Major Shaw.


Launceston Advertiser, 30 May 1845

FATAL ACCIDENT. - Last evening, about five o'clock, Mr. Hussell, baker, corner of Brisbane-street, was walking from the brig Swan on a plank leading from the after part of the vessel to the shore, when his foot slipped and he immediately disappeared under the water.  Every assistance that could be rendered at the time was given, but all in vain; he never rose to the surface of the water after his first disappearance.  Men have been employed all night in boats dragging for the body, but it has not yet been picked up.  Mr. Hussell had not long been married, and has left a wife far advanced towards her confinement, to deplore her loss.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 31 May 1845

MELANCHOLY ACCIDENT AND LOSS OF LIFE. - On Thursday evening about six o'clock, as Mr. Russel the baker of Brisbane-street, was coming on shore from the brig Swan, he accidentally struck his head against one of the beans at the wharf, fell overboard and instantly disappeared; it was high water at the time, and although the accident was witnessed by several persons, and every exertion was instantly used to render assistance, nothing was afterwards seen of the unfortunate man:- the river was dragged for many hours afterwards, but the body we regret to say, was not discovered. Mr. Russel has left a wife, who has since the melancholy intelligence was communicated to her, been in a state of distraction, and a very young child.

   This afternoon a body was picked up in the river; an inquest will be held on Monday.


Launceston Examiner, 31 May 1845

  The Schooner Will Watch. - We regret to state that Captain Forbes, who left this in the Will Watch, died about five weeks since, owing to the following circumstances: - Having made Saunder's Island they stood to shore for the purpose of trading, and having lowered a boat a natives swam off to her outside the reef, and pointed out a place where he said it was practicable to land.  Captain Forbes, Mr. John Russell, and three of the crew were in the boat, but o standing for the shore she was swamped in running through the surf, and two of the seamen, were drowned.  Mr. Russell was in the water about a quarter of an hour, and after great exertion reached the shore exhausted.  Captain Forbes having caught hold of an oar, was buffeted about among the rocks, but was eventually washed ashore insensible.  The usual remedies being resorted to he was partially recovered, but about ten days after expired from the bruises received. - Sydney Herald.


Launceston Examiner, 4 June 1845


   An Inquest was held at the Golden Lion, on Monday, upon the body of John Russell, who was unfortunately drowned on Thursday evening.

   John Jones, a seaman, deposed that on Saturday evening he and another person were grappling for the body of deceased, and having recovered it, with assistance got it on shore, and had it conveyed to the place where it had that day been viewed.

   Daniel M'Cole, a boatman, stated that on Thursday night he was standing near the stage leading from Mr. Evans's wharf to the brig Swan; deceased was going a-shore, and witness seeing he was rather tipsy, offered him his boat, which he refused, saying - "he was right enough"; he crawled along the stage on his hands and knees, and when he had nearly reached the wharf fell into the river; witness ha d a rope and jumped overboard, intending to catch hold of deceased when he came to the surface, but he rose no more' witness procured grappling irons, and several parties endeavoured to discover the body, but without success, until Thursday, when it was found near the spot where the Swan was lying,  as stated by the first witness.

   Mt. Henry Ball, master of the Swan, also deposed that he saw deceased on board, and had conversation with him; cautioned him to be careful how he went on shore, and advised him to go on his hands and knees instead of  walking down the plank; heard the last witness offer his assistance; and saw the deceased get on the plank to go a-shore; about two seconds afterwards, the last witness called out that Russell was overboard; he had been drinking, and that was witness's motive for cautioning him.  The jury returned a verdict of accidentally drowned.

   Deceased was a young man, who recently commenced business on his own account as baker.  He has left a wife in an advanced state of pregnancy and a child without any means of support.

  Another inquest was summoned for Tuesday, at the Good Woman, to inquire into the death of a child belonging to a female named Mrs. Minnett, residing in Frederick-street.  The child expired shortly after its birth.  The medical attendant being out of town, the inquest was adjourned until to-day, the jury having entered into recognizances to be resent.


Launceston Advertiser, 6 June 1845


   An inquest was held on Wednesday, at the Good Woman, on the body of a newly-born infant. Mrs. Dennis, midwife, on being examined, stated that she lived in the same house as Mr. Milett, the mother of the deceased child, and at during the whole time of the mother's pregnancy she never once saw her sober; that while intoxicated she frequently fell down and did herself great injury, and the child only lived about twenty minutes after it was born.  The coroner said that he believed from what he had heard, that a more dissolute and abandoned woman than the mother of the child did not exist.  Verdict, died from natural causes.

   Another inquest took place on the same day at the Factory, on the body of a male child named J.  [John] Montgomery.   The evidence of the mother, confirmed by Dr. Maddox, was that the child had been in a very delicate state of health from its infancy; on Tuesday night it was taken suddenly ill, and expired about six o'clock on the following morning.  In reply to a question by the coroner, the mother stated that she had nothing whatever to complain of, the child having received every attention.  She also stated that she had been twenty months in the factory and had but one month more top serve, and she implored that Captain Gardiner would use his influence [creased line]  from the place where her infant had that morning died.  Captain Gardiner then ordered that she should be removed to the other factory, and promised to endeavor to get the other month of her time forgiven.  Verdict, Died by the visitation of God.


Courier (Hobart), 10 June 1845



   Joseph Gardiner was charged with the murder of John Mende, by inflicting a mortal wound with a knife in his left breast.

   George Hewson - Is a prisoner of the Crown. .  .  .  Witness saw the dead body of Mende at the inquest, which was held the same day. .  .  . 

   George Everett - Member Royal College of Surgeons.  On the morning of the 14th last month called upon to see a person who had been stabbed; when witness got to the Hospital the patient was dead; afterwards made a post mortem, examination at the dead-house; only saw one dead body that day; witness found the body still warm lying on a bed, quite black in the countenance, with a wound in the left breast; the wound divided the cartilage of the third rib, passed into the cavity of the chest, perforated the left lung, passed through the pulmonary artery and entered the aorta - some fibres of the right ventricle of the heart were cut through.  The knife produced would cause such a wound. .  .  . 

   His Honor then summed up, and the Jury, after retiring for some time, returned a verdict of guilty.  Sentence deferred.


Launceston Examiner, 11 June 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Monday, at the factory, upon the bodies of four female children, one of whom was still-born, and the others died shortly after birth. A verdict of died by the visitation of God was returned. [See Issue of 14 June: "It should have been two, one was still born, and the other died shortly after birth."]


The Observer (Hobart), 17 June 1845

CHILD STRAYED. - On Sunday evening last a little boy named Randall, about three years old, strayed away from the residence of his parents in Launceston, and although diligent search has been set bon foot, the child has not been discovered.

INQUEST. - Caution to Mothers.

   An inquest was held at the Crown and Anchor Tavern, New-town, on the body of a child named Bertha Berwick, which had been suffocated, apparently, while lying by its mother's side at night, after having been suckled.


Launceston Advertiser, 13 June 1845

   AN inquest was held on Monday morning, at the female factory, in Patterson-street, on the bodies of twin children, one of which was still-born, and the other having lived only a few hours.  Dr. Maddox in evidence stated that the mother of the infants had been for a long time subject to water in the chest, and that she had suffered greatly during her confinement, and was now in such a precarious state that there was very little chance of her recovery.  Verdict, died from natural causes.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 18 June 1845        


ON Saturday night, the township and neighbourhood of George Town were thrown into consternation and alarm by a report that a cruel and barbarous murder  had just been committed by one of the boat's crew, the victim in this case being a sailor formerly belonging to the unfortunate brig Tobago.  It was further ascertained that another man, also attached to the same vessel, had been dangerously (if not mortally) wounded by the same hand.  Conjecture has of course been busy as to the motive of the supposed murder, but as yet little or nothing has transpired calculated to solve the mystery.  The result of the Coroner's Inquest not being at present known, we shall endeavour merely to furnish our readers with a brief outline of the popular report relative to this most atrocious transaction.  It seems that bon Saturday evening last, six of the boat's crew stationed at George Town, fell into company with two men formerly belonging to the Tobago brig.  After drinking pretty freely together, the whole party set out for the signal station, having, as is usual in such cases, previously provided themselves with two or three case bottles of rum.  On the way a quarrel ensued, in consequence of which one of the sailors and one of the boat's crew stripped to fight; when just about to commence the contest, it was perceived that the latter held in his right hand a large clasp knife, with which he presently afterwards rushed upon his unsuspecting antagonist, who instantly fell dead from the effects of a wound inflicted in his left breast. From the horrible spectacle thus presented, the whole party simultaneously fled; but the companion of the murdered man making less speed than the rest, was quickly overtaken by the homicide.  The deadly weapon, yet reeking with the blood of his murdered shipmate, was instantly buried in his side, and faint and exhausted with the loss of blood, he sunk upon the ground, never (as he then imagined) to rise again alive. In the meant time the Police-magistrate G. S. Davies, Esq., having observed from his window the drunken and riotous behavior of the whole party previous to the perpetration of the murder, despatched some constables in pursuit, with strict orders to confine them all.  Having for a short time pursued the track indicated by Mr. Davies, the constables all at once came upon the spot where lay the body of the individual just assailed, weltering in his blood! Believing that his recumbent position was the result only of the liquor he had drunk, one of the constables was despatched to the watch-house for further assistance, and returned shortly after with a wheelbarrow.  In this manner the wounded man was removed, and it was not until after his arrival at the watch house, that the true secret of his utter helplessness was discovered.  The wound having been dressed and attended to by the surgeon of the district, he was enabled) although not without much difficulty) to state the circumstances which led to this most fatal and bloody affray.  In consequence of his representations, the constables departed a second time for the scene of action, in the immediate vicinity of which, they presently discovered the dead body of the unfortunate seaman.  Having conveyed it to the dead-house, the constables went and informed Mr. Davies of the transaction, who ordered them not to delay a moment in searching for the supposed murdered, and his comrades.  An hour afterwards, the whole party were in custody, and we understand, that to-day an inquest will be holden upon the body of the murdered man.  It would, we believe, have taken place much earlier, but for the circumstance of Mr. Davies having seen from his window the conduct of the men previous to the fatal catastrophe.  Being under these circumstance, himself a witness, he could not of course sit in the capacity of Coroner, and Lieut. Friend, happening to be from home at the time, some delay was unavoidably incurred in the investigation of the matter.  The proceeding of the inquest will be duly furnished in our next.

MILES CARELESS, - It is currently reported about town that the murderers of this unfortunate individual are in a fair way of being brought to justice.  We can only add that we hope and trust they may.


The Observer (Hobart), 19 June 1845

EFFECTS OF INTEMPERANCE. - An inquest was held on Monday, by JH. Price, Esq., Coroner, on the body of Ann Jones, the wife of a soldier of the 51st Regiment, when it appeared that the deceased had for several days preceding her death been indulging in the excessive use of liquor, which brought on a fit of madness, and speedy death.  Mr. Surgeon Belcher, who held a post mortem examination on the body, fo09unhd the brain and chest much inflamed, and the liver diseased.  The jury returned a verdict that the deceased died from the excessive drinking of ardent spirits.


Launceston Advertiser, 20 June 1845



   An inquest was held on Tuesday on the body of the murdered seaman, (whose name proves to be Charles Sheppard,) before Captain Friend, but was adjourned until noon of Wednesday.

  The wounded man referred to in the above account, we regret to say, was not expected to live on Wednesday afternoon; since which time we have had no communication from George Town.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 21 June 1845



Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 21 June 1845


   The inquest held on the body of the murdered man, Charles Sheppard, late seaman of the brig Tobago took place, at George Town, on Tuesday, and was continue on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.  We are not yet bin possession of the result, but from what we have heard when present, there is little doubt that a verdict of wilful murder will be returned against both the men who were in the company of Sheppard.  The general impression at George Town was, that the two prisoners had leagued together to murder the sailor for his money and clothes, and that, after having committed the deed, they quarrelled  about a distribution of the plunder, when the same man (Kedge) who murdered the sailor, made an unsuccessful attempt to murder his comrade.  We shall be in possession of the particulars for our next publication.


Launceston Examiner, 27 June 1845


   A post mortem examination of the body of the deceased, proved the wound to have been inflicted with a knife, such as the one found and owned by the accused; it was of the depth of not less than five inches; the weapon entered the abdomen, dividing the peritoneum, severely lacerating the right lobe of the liver, and dividing the hepatic artery; and about three pounds of blood were found in the cavity of the abdomen. .  .  . 

   The jury after a most patient investigation and a searching enquiry as to the probability of others being concerned, in a design to rob the deceased, at five o'clock on Monday, after having adjourned for about half an hour, returned a verdict of wilful murder, and Kedge was fully committed for trial. 

   Hardwick, we understand, is lying in a very precarious state, and is not expected to live. .  .  . 


The Observer (Hobart), 27 June 1845

DEATH BY FIRE. - On Sunday last Mrs. Murphy of the Hollow Tavern having occasion to go a short distance from the house, left in it her two children.  She had not been absent above two or three minutes, when she was recalled by the screams of one of the children, whose clothes she found in a blaze.  Mrs. Murphy immediately threw a bucket of water over the child, whose dress was by this time nearly consumed, and having extinguished the flame, had it conveyed to the Colonial Hospital, where death ensued on the same night. A Coroner's Inquest found a verdict of Accidental Death.


Launceston Advertiser, 27 June 1845

INQUEST- An inquest was held yesterday before Captain Gardiner, to inquire into the death of a newly born infant of Mrs., Miller, Charles-street, who had died almost immediately after birth.  Dr. Grant in his evidence stated that he was not called in until after the child had died.  He had examined it, and his opinion was that the child was of a very weakly frame, and had not sufficient strength to discharge a portion of phlegm that had lodged in its throat.  Verdict, Died from natural causes.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 28 June 1845


Full account of the inquest on Charles Sheppard. .  .  . 

   An ex constable named Hegan, recently convicted on a charge of perjury, and sentenced to six months imprisonment, was confined in the watch-house with Kedge - whom he stated to the Magistrate, made a confession to him that implicated Hardwick, - but Kedge positively denied having made any such statement, and the jury, taking into consideration the bad character of Hegan, and the occasion of his imprisonment, would not give credence to his statement, particularly as it was entirely unsupported by circumstantial evidence, - hence the conclusion of the jury that Kedge "had no accomplices."

   On Wednesday, Hardwick was still living, but his recovery was not expected. .  .  . 


Launceston Examiner, 28 June 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Thursday upon the body of a child of Mrs. Miller, which survived its birth only a few hours.  A verdict was returned to the effect that death resulted from natural causes.

   There was not the slightest occasion for this inquest: and if the public purse does not deserve protection, some consideration should be shown for the feelings of parents, especially under such circumstances.  Mothers are not accustomed to scenes which are professionally familiar to coroners, and every unnecessary intrusion upon domestic privacy, particularly during a period of affliction, becomes reprehensible.  A little enquiry in this case would have fully satisfied the most punctilious officer that no inquest need have been summoned. [See also Cornwall Chronicle, 5 July.]


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 2 July 1845

SUDDEN DEATH. - At an early hour on Monday morning it was discovered that Mr. Jubb, residing with his son-in-law in the vicinity of Mulgrave-street, had expired during the night. His son-in-0law had been alarmed by hearing the moans of deceased, and had in consequence arisen.  On entering deceased's apartment, the latter complained of having been taken suddenly ill, and requested a draught of water.  This being supplied to him, he stated that he felt much better, and soon after, his attendant left him.  He had not, however, retired long, before he heard the old gentleman fall upon the floor, and on hurrying into his apartment, found him bleeding and exhausted in the position in which he had fallen Medical assistance was speedily procured, but deceased died before it could be rendered sufficiently available. - An inquest was yesterday held upon the body, when a verdict of Died by the visitation of God was returned.  Deceased had, for a length of time, been in an infirm, state of health. [66 years of age.]


Launceston Advertiser, 4 July 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Monday last, at the house of a [line creased] on the body of a man, very well known in Launceston, named George Jubb, who was found dead in his bed on the previous morning.  The landlord of the house was examined, and deposed that the deceased was sixty-six years of age; that for some days past he had been complaining of general indisposition; on the evening previous to his death he retired to his bed rather earlier than usual; about daylight witness heard the deceased get from his bed and  walk across the room; he went to his assistance, and found that he had fallen down in a kind of fit; he soon recovered, when witness got him into bed and made him some tea, and after some time left him; early in the morning he went to inquire how deceased was, when he found him lying in his bed quite dead.  Dr. Maddox was sent for, who soon arrived, but found that life had been extinct for some time.  Dr. Maddox in answer to a question from the coroner said, he could not undertake to say the cause of the deceased's death, without a post mortem examination.  The coroner, then, and by the request of the jury, ordered the examination; and here a most painful scene was witnesses; the daughter of the deceased, in a paroxysm of grief, declaring that she would not allow her father to be opened.  It was with great difficulty Captain Gardiner succeeded in persuading the distracted woman to allow the examination to proceed.  The result proved that the deceased died of disease of the heart, and a verdict was returned accordingly.


Launceston Examiner, 5 July 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Friday at the factory, upon the body of an infant named Emily Lowton, which was adjourned until this morning.

   Another child has since died at the same establishment, upon whom an inquest has also held.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 5 July 1845

INQUESTS. - An inquest was held before F. H. Henslowe, Esquire, the coroner for the district, on Wednesday the 2nd July instant, at Mr. Hope's, the Rose Hotel [????] upon the body of a pass-holder in the service of John Maclanachan, Esq., named William Kay, who was accidentally killed on Monday evening at the Ball Pan Plains.  It appears that he was driving three horses and a threshing machine when some of the machinery becoming loose, he, in endeavouring to replace it, must have fallen and been run over.  The medical officer James Maclanachan, Esq., upon his post mortem examination, was perfectly satisfied he came to his death by a heavy body having passed over him.

   On Friday last, two inquests were held at the factory before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., on the bodies of two infants, one aged three months, and the other only a single day.  In both cases, death appeared to have resulted from natural causes, and the jury accordingly returned a verdict to that effect.


The Observer (Hobart), 8 July 1845

ACCIDENT. -  A prisoner of the Crown, at Oyster Cove, engaged in sawing timber, whilst a portion of his gang was felling a tree, the tree unexpectedly fell, and his skull was fractured from which death ensued.  The Coroner subjected the overseer to a strict examination so as to ascertain whether due precautions had been observed in the distribution of the men to obviate such accidents.  A verdict of accidental death was returned.

   INQUEST. -  An inquest was held on Friday on view of the body of Eliza North.  The deceased had been addicted to habits of intemperance, which, however, in consequence of ill health had been discontinued for about a week.  On the morning of her death she felt better, and entrusted a little girl with her infant to take out; the girl on here return in about ten minutes found her in bed and lice extinct.  Dr. Bright, who had been in the habit of attending her attributed her death to apoplexy, to which effect a verdict was returned.


Launceston Examiner, 9 July 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Friday at the factory, upon the body of an infant named Emily Lowton, which was adjourned until this morning.  Another child has since died at the same establishment, upon whom an inquest has also been held.

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Tuesday, in Wellington-street, upon the body of a young woman named Mrs. Potts.  A verdict was returned of died from natural causes, accelerated by excessive drinking.


Launceston Examiner, 12 July 1845

CLARKE'S FORD. - An accident occurred at Clarke's Ford a few days since.  A servant of Mr.  Tucker was attempting to cross the river with a dray and two bullocks, but owing to the floods occasioned by the late rains, the river was so swollen that in making the attempt the bullocks were carried away by the stream and drowned, the man having with difficulty saved himself.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 12 July 1845



   The court opened this morning with the trial of Anthony Kedge, a prisoner of the crown, charged with the murder of Charles Shepherd, at George Town, on Saturday the 14th June.  [Evidence by James Hardwicke.]


The Observer (Hobart), 15 July 1845


   An inquest was held at the female House of Correction on Saturday last, on view of the body of Eliza Owen.

   It appears that the deceased absconded from the service of Mr. Brock, Macquarie-street, on the 28th ult., and surrendered herself on the night of the 8th instant to Constable Thompson, by whom she was taken to the chief station at the Police-office.  Her dress was loose, and she stated to the constable that she had been in the bush, and had not during that time taken anything but tea; that a man had been with her, who brought her to the paddock on the evening when she surrendered, and then ran away from her; her health being bad, she was unable to follow him.  On being brought to the station she was placed in a cell, and shortly after complained of illness, and requested Constable W. Bird to give her a drink of water, but he, with a humanity which reflected great credit upon him, made her some tea several times during the night, and Sub-District Constable Todd directed two blankets and a rug to be given her, and also allowed her to sit by the fire as long as she thought proper.  As she complained of being very ill, Constable Todd, about half-past one o'clock, requested Mr. Morrice, the District Constable by whom he was relieved, to write a note requesting the attendance of Mr. Belcher, who enquired of the messenger how long she had been in the watch-house, when she was taken unwell, and then sent word he would not come then, but would attend in the morning.   A woman was placed in the cell with her, to render any assistance she required, as she preferred lying down to sitting before the fire.  About half-past seven o'clock in the morning she appeared so much worse that Constable Todd went to the residence of Dr. Bright,  and solicited that gentleman as a personal favour to visit the deceased, which request was immediately complied with, and Dr. Bright finding her in a state of danger ordered her immediate removal to the Colonial Hospital; but as this, owing to the regulations, could not be done, he prescribed her some medicine, directed a further supply of bedding, and  also some warm nourishment to be afforded her, which was  cheerfully supplied by Mrs. Watkins.   Previous to the departure of Dr. Bright he left a certificate for the Police Magistrate recommending that the woman, who was seriously ill with a bowel complaint, to be removed to the hospital as soon as possible.  Mr. Belcher arrived about this time, and seeing the certificate of Dr. Bright, he took it away and tore it to pieces, leaving in its stead a certificate of his own, that he found the woman suffering from spasmodic affection of the bowels, and recommending her to be removed to the hospital, or the consequences might be fatal.  Constable Todd, on missing the certificate of Dr. Bright, procured another from that gentleman, Mr. Belcher having admitted its being taken by him.  In cases of this description the officers of the station have only one medical authority to refer to for assistance -viz. Mr. Belcher. 

   The woman was conveyed in the van to the Female House of Correction, where she was placed in a warm be in the hospital, and in a short time appeared considerably relieved, and passed a comfortable night.  About half-past seven on the morning of Friday, the nurse observed her closing her hands, and suspected she was in a fit, to which she was subject, but on feeling her pulse, and placing her hand on her heart, she found that life was extinct.  It appeared that every possible kindness and attention had been bestowed upon her, and previous to her death she expressed herself in grateful terms for the treatment she had received.  The unfortunate woman died without a struggle, and the other patients thought she was asleep. A post mortem examination was made by Drs. Casey, Agnew and Bright, who were decided in their opinion that death was caused from the combined effects of dysentery, an extensive abscess at the lower part of the bowels, and a cellular tissue behind the viscera.  That death must have ensued from the abscess alone (which could only be discovered on a post mortem examination) independent of dysentery, but which in all probability accelerated it, - that her case was hopeless, her disease incurable, and not attributable to the want of medical attendance.

   The Coroner was proceeding to read the evidence to the jury, but they expressed themselves satisfied, and in a brief address to them he observed, that if they were of opinion that death was [crease, line missing] be their duty to return a verdict of manslaughter.  The jury considered much censure attributable to Mr. Belcher for not attending when called on by the requisition from the Police-office, expressed their high satisfaction with the humanity and attention bestowed on the deceased by Constables Morris, Todd and Bird, and returned a verdict of Died by the visitation of God.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 15 July 1845


CORONER'S INQUESTS. - Yesterday, another Inquest was held before the same Coroner, at the Commercial Inn, Collins-street, on the body of a little boy named William Henry Parker, aged about five years.  The poor little child was playing with the daughter of Mr. Darby, the tinman, when she discovered a phial containing oil of vitriol (Mr. Darby having been using such in his trade) by the water-cask; child-like, she presented it to her playmate, who drank the acid at a draught.  Dr. Lloyd was immediately in attendance, but all his exertions - and they were unavailing, - were unavailing, and the poor little fellow died in about five hours.  A verdict was returned accordingly.


Launceston Examiner, 16 July 1845


Friday, July 11.


Anthony Kedge, guilty.


Courier (Hobart), 16 July 1845

Very detailed account of the Eliza Owen inquest.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 23 July 1845

THE EFFECTS OF DEPRAVITY. - A female, named Eliza Awall, a prisoner of the crown, lately absconded from her service at Hobart Town. [Eliza Owen.]


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 26 July 1845

FATAL ACCIDENT. -On Tuesday evening between the hours of seven and eight o'clock, a fatal accident occurred to Mr. Samuel Evans, employed by Mr. H. Reed as storekeeper.  It appears that in consequence of information received, the unfortunate deceased went to the wharf with a candle in his hand to look for a man who was represented to have been stealing oil.  Deceased rather than be guided by the light, he stepped off the wharf, and was instantly precipitated into the river; - some seamen on board the John & Charlotte,  hearing the splash, threw no less than four ropes overboard, and as it appears close within reach of the decease, who having swum for about a hundred yards was unable to contend any longer with his fate - her sunk to rose no more.  The body having been recovered, the following day an inquest was held at the Old Ferry House, and the jury after a patient investigation of the evidence, returned a verdict of found drowned. [See Launceston Advertiser, 31 July.]


Launceston Examiner, 27 July 1845


   Last Sunday week, on the Quoin, at a place called the Devil's Hole, a man and a woman residing there went out to enjoy a singular species of enjoyment, which proved fatal to the man.   The woman had a gun, and wishing to show her experience as a shot, it was agreed that the man should stand at a distance and throwing hat in the air, whilst she fired at it.  After enjoying 'the sport' for some time, the percussion cap exploded, but the gun hung fire, and the woman unconsciously brought down the muzzle to a level with the man's breast.  At this instant the gun exploded, and lodged an entire charge of buck shot into the heart of the man, who fell and instantly expired.  An inquest was held on the following day, before Mr.  Burrows, coroner for that district, and a verdict returned of accidental death.


The Observer (Hobart), 29 July 1845 



Thursday, 24th July, 1845.

   The Court was crowded at an early hour, and at 10 o'clock His Honor, the Puisne Judge, took his seat on the Bench, when the following men, Isaac Lockwood, William Gomm, and Theodore Taylor were placed at the bar. 

   A petition was then put into the Court, praying, in consequence of the difficult situation in which they were placed, and their inability to defend themselves, his Honor would appoint counsel to defend them, which application his Honor, under the circumstances, did not feel justified in granting, and inquired if either of them wished to postpone their trial, to which an answer in the negative being returned, the indictment which consisted of five counts, each charging the prisoners with the wilful murder of Jane Saunders, on the 18th June last, was read. .  .  . 

   Dr. Weston deposed as to his having examined the body, and found two small punctured wounds  over the eyes, and several on the neck, which he considered were produced by some small pointed instrument, such as a fork or knife; they were of irregular appearance.  On the outside of the upper part of the right thigh he discovered marks of discolouration, as if produced by pressure of the hand.  In the post mortem examination he found the wounds over the eyes did not go through the eye lids; the remainder of the eyes were in a natural state, but the pupils more or less contracted.  The wounds on the neck did not penetrate the skin; the discolouration of the skin on the neck was more or less dark, red, and livid, but not so strong in the front as in the back part; he removed some portion of the skin round the neck and examined the blood vessels connecting with the head; they were all full and torbid; the lungs were quite natural and healthy.  He considered death proceeded from the rupture of a blood-vessel in the brain, between the dura mater and the pia mater, the latter of which was ruptured.  He thought the girl was dead before she was immersed in the water, there being none in the lungs or stomach, and nothing grasped by the hands.  There was about two ounces of extravasated blood in the brain, of which the vessels were in an apoplectic state.  The blood in the brain was fluid and also that in the viscera.  The rupture might have been caused by suffocation; stoppage of breathing by the mouth or nostrils might have caused it.  The handkerchief being put in her mouth, as stated by the native boy, might have caused it; he saw nothing on the body inconsistent with the opinion that she died from suffocation.  The blood vessel might have been ruptured if she had been strangled round the neck; he thought the discolouration spoken of took place after death which might have been occasioned by pressure.  The evidence further proceeded to illustrate the causes which might have produced the rupture alluded to. He considered death was not caused by strangulation or external violence:- not even the slightest instrument had penetrated though the eyelid.  He was not certain whether in all cases water would be found in the stomach of a person thrown in alive; he should say she was not drowned from the rupture.  He saw a bruise on the inner side of the skull, which corresponded with the rupture, exactly covering it.  The blow which caused the bruise would have produced the rupture.  The blow was before death; he did not believe the rupture was caused by suffocation, as he saw no signs of violence; her arms were not at all black.  Suffocation caused by stopping the breath of the mouth and nostrils would not always produce rupture.  A person being strangled and thrown on the ground, striking the head against a stone, might have produced the rupture.  He did not mean to limit the bruise to a few minutes before or after death.  He thought if the rupture had caused death without strangulation he should have found some fullness of the vessels.  The rupture, he considered, was the immediate cause of death. As soon as circulation ceases life becomes extinct.

   Dr. Bedford. - Two ounces of extravasated blood on the brain would not necessarily cause immediate death; a person might live a day, or die shortly.  If f a person was thrown into water in a state of syncope, they might die from being thrown in it, and yet no water be in the stomach.  The rupture spoken of might be occasioned by a handkerchief being thrust into the mouth, and the nose being held as described by the black boy. .  .  . 

   The jury returned a verdict of guilty against the prisoners, who seemed considerably affected at the result, and his Honor proceeded in a most impressive manner to pass the sentence of death upon them.


Courier (Hobart), 2 August 1845

SUICIDE. - A melancholy case of suicide has occurred at Port Arthur.  Mr.  Alexander Miller, the stepson of the master shipwright Mr. Hoy, has for some time past, while in Hobart Town, exhibited strong symptoms of insanity, brought on, it is alleged, by the effect of some noxious ingredient administered to him in his drink, whilst enjoying himself after his return from whaling.  He had so far recovered as to be able to reside with his family, and was considered by them as quite well.  On Saturday morning last he appeared rather depressed in spirit, but not remarkably so, and in a kind soothing manner dressed the knee of his little nephew, who was a great sufferer.   A few minutes afterwards he went into his mother's rom, and the report of a fire arm was heard.  Mrs. Hoy rushed into the room and found him extended on his back, with the blood running profusely from a wound in the right side of the head behind the ear. There were pistols in the room, but the unfortunate young man had preferred a small carbine loaded with shot.  From his left hand being quite black, by the explosion it would appear that he had guided the muzzle with his left hand, and, extending his right arm at full length, had pulled the trigger with the right hand.  An inquest was held the same day by the coroner, Dr. Everett, and a verdict of insanity brought in.


The Observer (Hobart), 12 August 1845

INQUEST. - On Thursday last, an inquest was held at the Female Factory, on the body of Phoebe Watt, who had for some time lingered under inflammation of the lungs, and which occasioned her death, in conformable with which a verdict was returned.

SUDDEN DEATH. - On Thursday last, the female servant of Mrs. Solomon, Liverpool-street, was taken suddenly ill, and although medical assistance was immediately procured, she died in about an hour after the attack. - Verdict apoplexy.


Launceston Advertiser, 14 August 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the police office, Evandale, on Saturday last, before Robert Wales, Esq., upon view of the body of Patrick Gillespie, a ticket-of-leave holder, who acted in the capacity of schoolmaster in the family of Mr. Arthur Mayne, of the White Hills; and from the suddenness of death, together with a rumour that deceased had taken improper medicine, a post mortem examination was deemed necessary.  The evidence of Mr. Mayne and Dr. Huxtable fully satisfied the coroner and jury that no improper medicine had been administered; we therefore give the substance of their evidence:-

Mr. Arthur Mayne said that the deceased acted as schoolmaster to his children, and continued to do so until Thursday evening last; he had been complaining of a slight cold for the last six weeks; about eight or nine days back he took a dose of salts, and on Thursday morning he gave him another dose; the quantity given him was two table-spoonfuls, not heaped up; they were taken about sunrise; the deceased cut some bread and took some tea for his dinner, but no meat, and assigned as a reason for not doing so, that he thought it would be better not to eat meat so soon after taking the salts;  at that time he stated he felt himself very much relieved by the medicine; it was about half-past five when deceased came from the school-room; he then ate some meat and bread, and drank some tea; he did not eat heartily; after supper he complained of being unwell, and went outside of the door, returned in a few minutes; when he came in Mr. Mayne observed the perspiration in large drops standing on his face, and that he looked very pale; he sat down on the sofa, and then lay upon his right side; witness thought he was asleep, as he began to snore, and said so to his wife, who took a candle and went to him, and then exclaimed he is not asleep, he is dying; witness then assisted him up, had his feet bathed in warm water, and threw a little cold water in his face; she took off his neck handkerchief; in about two minutes after this he died; it was then half-past six o'clock; witness never saw the deceased in the slightest tipsy; he was about 33 years of age; the deceased was a very quiet inoffensive man, and witness  had never seen him quarrelling.

   A servant of Mr. Mayne's named John Winks was next examined, and stated that he was called out of the kitchen by Mrs. Maybe, as the schoolmaster was dying; ran in immediately and saw his master holding up Patrick Gillespie, who was then breathing with great difficulty; in two minutes after this he was dead.

   The evidence of Dr. Huxtable was to the effect that deceased had come to his death by the rupture of as blood vessel in the upper part of the chest; and that he also had an enlargement of the heart. Verdict - Died by the visitation of God.


The Observer (Hobart), 22 August 1845

   INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Monday last on the body of a coloured man named Constant Burk, who on the 10th instant was standing with his back to the fire, in a room belonging to Mr. Shoobridge, of Providence Valley, when a cotton dressing gown he had on took fire,; he immediately got assistance from a person named Hollingsworth, who threw water over him, and succeeded in extinguishing the flames; but the injuries received were of such a nature as to cause his death. Verdict - Accidental death.

   BODY FOUND. - The body of a man was on Monday last discovered nearly buried in sand at Kelly's Point, and on Wednesday an inquest was held thereon.  The body, when viewed by the jury presented a most frightful spectacle, the head being completely divested of the skin, the face entirely gone, and the whole body was in such a mutilated state that there was no means of ascertaining who the person was, or what occasioned his death.  A knife was suspended round his neck, with the letter W on it, and a portion of a blue, as also of a regatta, shirt were on the body.  A verdict of Found Drowned was returned.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 23 August 1845

   A report reached town this afternoon, that the body of a man was lying on the road between the Marine Villa, belonging to James Cox, Esquire, and the Lower Heads.  Lieutenant Friend, in the absence of the Police Magistrate, immediately dispatched a party of men to being the deceased into town - it proved to be the body of a man named George Mason, who held a ticket-of-leave,  and was employed at the Light-house - there were no marks of violence on his body, and no reason to suppose that he came unfairly by his death;  he had come into town for the purpose of bringing out rations, and was observed to be the worse for liquor. The night was extremely cold, and probably he had laid down to sleep, and from which he never awoke; a Coroner's jury is summoned for to-morrow, when our correspondent will furnish us with further particulars. - Communicated.


Courier (Hobart), 27 August 1845


PROPHETIC DEATH.  Last week two of the men belonging to Messrs. Nathan and Moses; whaling establishment, on Forestier's Peninsula, were watching their boats under the rocks of the look-out post; they made a fire, and  went to sleep.  One of them on awaking, said, I think we are in a dangerous situation; I just dreamt that a stone had fallen on my head."  The other laughed and went to his boat; the poor fellow who spoke took his comrade's seat, and in a few minutes, strange to tell, his dream became a reality - for a stone, of about two pounds weight, fell suddenly, and, striking him on the head, inflicted such injury as to cause his death in a very short time.  An inquest has been held by the Coroner, Mr. R. P. Stuart.


Launceston Examiner, 30 August 1845

   INQUEST. - A decrepid old man in the employ of Mr. William Field, was found dead a short time since, near his master's residence.  He had charge of a team, and alarm was created by the return of the horses without the driver.  Search being made, the body was discovered.  The unfortunate man was subject to cramp, with which he is supposed to have been suddenly seized, and in that state perished from cold and set.  A verdict was returned of died by the visitation of God.

SUDDEN DEATH. - A man named Owen Kenny formerly in the employ of Thos. Archer, Esq., died suddenly non Friday morning. Mr. Hadfield observed him lying upon his face in Wellington-0street5 and sent for Dr. Maddox, who caused him to be removed to the hospital, where he died almost immediately.  Death was occasioned by the rupture of an artery in the heart.  Deceased was in destitute circumstances, - and had been out of work for two months, and had that morning applied to Mr. Twinning for relief from the Benevolent Society, which would have been afforded had he lived - Mr. Twinning having ascertained his deplorable condition, and appointed an hour to furnish him with the requisite ticket.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 6 September 1845


   On Wednesday last, an inquest was held at the Sir George Arthur Inn, on view of the body of Mrs. Sarah Kelly, before A. Gardiner, Esq.  The deceased had been ailing for ten days prior to her death, but would not allow her husband to send for medical aid, alleging that it was merely a cold.  On Monday, however, finding that she was worse, her requested Dr. Maddox, to attend, who did so, but found her dead when he called.  On a post mortem examination, Dr. Maddox ascertained that much inflammation existed in the throat, and that an abscess had formed which had been the cause of her death; and he stated his opinion that had medical aid being called in, he believed her life would have been preserved.  A verdict was returned of Died from the Effects of an abscess in the throat, and the Jury at the same time expressed their regret that a medical man had not ben procured.


Courier (Hobart), 10 September 1845


INQUEST - CHARGE OF MURDER. - The adjourned inquest on the body of Jordan, a servant of Mrs.  Bennison, who was vitally stabbed under the circumstances stated in our last, was holden at the Saracen's Head, on Saturday, and again adjourned to this day.  John Bowater, the person in custody on suspicion of having committed the murder, was discovered and apprehended by constable Taylor.


The Observer (Hobart), 12 September 1845


Trial of Eliza Binwell for aiding and abetting in the murder of Jane Saunders.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 12 September 1845

MURDER. - The Inquest on the body of Charles Jordan, held at the Saracen's Head, Macquarie-street, on Tuesday, terminated in the committal of John Bywater for wilful murder. The conduct of the police on this occasion merits every praise, particularly that of Mr. D. C. Symmonds, Taylor, and Brown, for their unremitting exertions in discovering the said William Bywater, who was apprehended in Watchorn-street, by Taylor and Brown on Wednesday last, and for their subsequent unwearied energy in collecting the evidence which clearly brought home the foul deed to Bywater.  The exertions displayed by Mr., D. C. Symmonds and the two members of the detective force, will not, we trust, be overlooked by the proper authorities.


Launceston Examiner, 13 September 1845

 INQUEST. - We have not space in this number to refer at length to the recent inquest held at King's Meadows, on view of the body of Mrs. Kelsey.  The inquest was entirely unnecessary, and we hope his Excellency will refuse ti sanction the payment of fees, either to the doctor or the coroner, for their intrusion on this melancholy occasion.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 23 September 1845

ELIZA BENWELL. - The warrant for the execution of this wretched criminal; was signed on Friday last, when the Executive Council sat for some hours in deliberation on her case.  She is to suffer on Tuesday next; but why so long a delay has been allowed we know not, unless it be on account of the ill-health of the miserable creature.  We reiterate the hope expressed bin our last number, that she will make all the atonement in her power by expiring with a "clean breast," freely confessing every circumstance which led her to the horrible catastrophe; for although the public mind is generally unanimous as to her guilt, yet it would be more satisfactory if she would explain the few circumstances which we have not hitherto actually divulged.

   SKELETON FOUND.  The skeleton of a man named Copatick, a shoemaker, formerly residing at Kangaroo Point, was found on Sunday last at Doughty Point, near the farm of Mr. Chipman; it was identified by the clothes.  It appears that the unfortunate man had left Shuttle's public-house at Clarence Plains in the beginning of June last, somewhat in liquor, for his house at Kangaroo Point, but mistaking the road, had perished through exhaustion.  We learn that two persons refused the poor man shelter on the night in question, which was very stormy and inclement.  An Inquest will be held this day on the remains.


Launceston Examiner, 24 September 1845


   In a previous number we noticed the death of Mrs. Kelsey, widow of the late Mr. Jackson, coach builder.  She had been indisposed for some time, and during her illness had been supplied with medicines by a medical firm.  On the day of her decease she became suddenly worse. And her husband, alarmed for her safety, procured the attendance of Dr. Maddox.  He did not arrive, however, until life was extinct.  As usual, he announced the fact. The coroner immediately issued his precept, an inquest was held, and a post mortem examination took place, when, as a matter of course, it was found that death had resulted from natural causes.

   We anticipated that the merits of this case would have been exposed at the police-office.  Mr. Knight, who was rather rudely invited as a Juror, refused to attend; and his obstinacy incurred the indignation of the authorities, who commanded him to answer for contempt by fine and imprisonment.  Mr. Knight applied for subpoena to serve on the coroner and the other parties concerned, and could have proved, by testimony of Mr. Kelsey and others, that the inquest was unnecessary, and occasioned great grief to the surviving relations of the deceased, whose feelings were wounded, and their sorrow aggravated, buy the procedure; but the charge was withdrawn. .  .  . 

   Another case, precisely similar to the above, occurred about the same time; and the same parties who promoted the needless investigation at King's Meadows, intended to visit the Westbury road; but the determination of the respected husband saved his dwelling from violation. .  .  . 


 Colonial Times (Hobart), 26 September v1845

CORONER'S INQUEST. - On Tuesday, Major Schaw held an inquest on the remains of a man named Copatick, a shoemaker, who had been for some weeks missing from a hut he occupied near Wentworth, Clarence Plains.  A son of Mr. Munday, who resides in that neighbourhood, found the deceased near Mr. Chipman's brush fence.  The body was too entirely decomposed to assure recognition. It appeared that he was defective of sight, and had left Mr. Shuttle's Inn to return home, when, missing his way, he was last seen at Mr.  Fielder's, when he enquired the road to Mr. Petchey's farm; it was shown him, and he was no more seen until his remains were found as above.  The various stories about his having been drunk, and that he had cackled at various other places, appeared to be all unfounded.  Major Schaw is censured for not having had the body removed to the Inn at Clarence Plains, instead of allowing it to remain where it was found.  A mistake also prevails as to the right of Coroners' Juries to assemble at any private house.  The nearest licensed house is the proper place.  We have heard some very extraordinary circumstances relative to the above Inquest.  We are making the necessary enquiries, and if what is reported to us be established, we shall not fail to bring what in such case will be a most revolting detail, fully before the public.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 27 September 1845

   MAN DROWNED. - A boatman, we understand in the service of Mr. Hudson, reported at the Police-office a few days ago, that his mate in a boat fell overboard, on their way up from George Town.

   MAN DROWNED. - A man named Bartlett, a probationer on the lime barge of Mr. De Little, unfortunately fell overboard on Thursday last, and was drowned.  The accident was witnessed by a fellow-servant employed in the vessel.


Launceston Examiner, 27 September 1845

ACCIDENT. - On Thursday morning a man in the employ of Mr. De Little, while engaged on board the lime boat, then near the bar and proceeding down the river accidentally fell overboard and was drowned.  It appears that the snapping of the tiller rope was the occasion of the accident.  The companion of the deceased threw a rope into the river and jumped into the dingy, but effectual assistance was a moment too late.  The survivor caught at the deceased and grasped his cap, but the body disappeared.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 30 September 1845

WE mentioned in our last the recent Coroner's Jury proceedings at Clarence Plains.  We await the result of the inquiries we are making as to the correction of the statements made to us thereupon.  In the mean-time we have to acknowledge the receipt of the letter of "An Old Inhabitant," as to the act of a person named Roberts, the District Constable of that place.  We are convinced the comment complained of is unknown to Major Schaw, or that it would not be permitted.  If  the District Constable took the man into his district, out of another in which he had his house, which is much further from Richmond than that of the district in which he was found, in order to convey him to his own watch-house,  it was an unauthorised act.  Kangaroo Point is a district immediately under Mr. Price, with which the person Roberts has nothing whatever to do, any more than he has in Hobart Town.  We shall not fail to properly notice this matter. 

Since the above was in print, we have ascertained that not the shadow of blame attaches to Major Schaw, who performed his Coroner's duty with the strictest accuracy.  Particulars on Friday.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 1 October 1856

CORONER'S INQUEST. - On Monday an Inquest was held at the George Inn Elizabeth-street before A. Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, and a respectable jury, on view of the body of Jane Hutton [Hatton] aged 25, whose death is mentioned in another part of our column.

   The deceased was a young woman of dissipated habits, but had been induced for once to attend the Factory Chapel from which she was returning between 4 and 5 o'clock on Sunday afternoon when she was seized in Elizabeth-street with a fit of apoplexy, and was carried in an insensible state to the house of Mr. Yates in this neighbourhood; not getting any better, Dr. Ward (successor) to Dr. Haygarth was desired to visit her at about 8 o'clock which he did with great promptness and resorted to the usual measures for her relief, but all medical skill was unavailing, and she expired at 2 o'clock on Monday morning.  The jury returned a verdict of Died by the visitation of God. [Page 4: SUDDEN DEATH.]


Launceston Examiner, 1 October 1845

ACCIDENTAL DEATH. - A constable at Brighton named John M'Gra, accidentally shot himself a few days since.  He was getting over a fence with a loaded piece when a twig caught the trigger and the gun went off, the contents of which lodged in his heart, and he died instantly.


Launceston Advertiser, 2 October 1845

INQUEST.  [Jane Hutton.[  .  .  .   A post mortem examination was deemed necessary, and it was found deceased had ruptured a blood vessel. Verdict - Died by the visitation of God.

Launceston Advertiser, 9 October 1845

BODY FOUND. - About nine o'clock this morning, some men belonging to the pilot boat accidentally came upon the body of George Bartlett (formerly in the service of Mr. De Little), who our readers will remember was unfortunately drowned about a fortnight ago, in consequence of the breaking of the tiller roper belonging to a vessel in which he was employed. The body was discovered only a short distance from the scene of accident, partly concealed by a quantity of tea-tree brush, situated only a few yards above the bar.  Although much mutilated, there was but little difficulty in recognizing it as that of the deceased, George Bartlett.  It was immediately conveyed to the house of Mr.  Lukin, pending a coroner's inquest.


Launceston Examiner, 11 October 1845

   INQUEST. - On Thursday, an inquest was held at Mr. Thompson's Eagle's Return, on view of the body of Charles Sullivan, lately in the service of Mr. Thomas Gibson.  The body was found on Saturday last, in a water-hole, in one of Mr. William Gilbert's paddocks, adjoining the South Esk River.  Mr. Henslowe, police magistrate at Campbell Town, presided, and Dr. Valentine was also present.  The jury returned a verdict of found drowned.  It is supposed the unfortunate man in attempting to cross the stream, had been swept away by the current.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 11 October 1845


   An inquest was held this day, at Mr. M'Kenzie's, The Scottish Chief, Wellington-street, before A. Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, on view of the body of George Bartlett, aged 19, who fell overboard from one of Mr. De Little's Lime Barges.

  Daniel Lynch, deposed that he worked for Mr. De Little and was on board the barge, going down the river on the 25h ultimo.  While the craft was at Mr. Gibbons dock the deceased was hauling one of the ropes near the helm, and on turning round, witness saw him overboard; it appeared that the rope had given way, and deceased lost his balance; he immediately laid hold of the main-sheet, and threw a rope over to him; then jumped into the small boat and made a grab at him, )as he thought) but it was only his cap; saw no more of him, came back and informed his master; a woman was on board but she was asleep below; deceased was a probationer; witness knew him eight months, and believed he had an uncle in business as a shoe-maker at Ross.

   Jane Mallet (the woman on board) proved that she was below asleep, the last witness awoke her, saying that George had fallen overboard; he was very much agitated; and  said he must go ashore and tell his master; deceased and Lynch, were both on very friendly term,.

   William Hall, attached to the Marine department found the body in a part of the river called the "tea-tree" near to where deceased fell overboard; it was floating.

   Dr. Maddox, deposed to the appearance of the corpse, which was that of a person who had been drowned; there were no marks of violence on it.  Verdict accidentally drowned.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 18 October 1845


CORONER'S INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the Factory, on Thursday, before A. Gardiner, Esq., and an intelligent jury, ion the body of an infant. It seems that the mother, Kitty Ann Linn, who is in the Factory under sentence, was taken in labor, was removed to the lying-in ward, but for some reason of her own, refused to stay there, and managed to get back into the crime-class sleeping ward, where she gave birth to the child (still-born) but previous to which, she had pretended to go into hysterics, and some foul play was suspected about the child.  The jury ultimately returned a verdict of still-born, but strongly condemned the unnatural conduct of the mother, who is a woman of very bad character.  The jury (who had examined the lying-in ward, and other parts of the building) also expressed their satisfaction at the cleanly and comfortable appearance of every thing, and wondered exceedingly at the folly of the woman, in not taking up such convenient quarters in the lying-in ward.

   COINFESSION OF ELIZA BENWALL. -  This woman made confession on the evening preceding her execution to the effect: - that she could have saved the girl (Jane Saunders) life, had she been aware that a murder was intended.   Thus adds the Hobart Town Advertiser is so far satisfactory as it shows that whatever the men meditated, she acted with them bin "Unity of design" upon which so much stress was laid by the learned judge in his address to the Jury.  The atrocious murder of Jane Saunders has been avenged by the death of three men and one woman on the scaffold, and we believe a solitary voice could not be found throughout the colony expressive of dissent the justice of their punishment.


The Observer (Hobart), 21 October 1845


   About the middle of last week, a fisherman named Isaacson discovered the dead body of a man in the Derwernt near Mr. Cope's residence.  He removed it from the river, and secured it to a bush which overhangs the water, while he proceeded to impart his information.  An inquest was held, we believe, on Thursday, but adjourned till Saturday, for the purpose, if possible, of identifying the person of the deceased, who appears to be a stranger in the township. The body, when found, was dressed in dark fustian clothes, with a hat on.


Courier (Hobart), 25 October 1845

SUPPOSED MURDER. - The night before last the movement of a small schooner from the Wharf, where she was lying, opposite the Commissariat stores,  brought up to the surface of the water the dead body of a man which had evidently been some time in the water, and bore the marks of violence upon it. The body is not recognized, and low lies at the Colonial Hospital, where an inquest was to be held yesterday afternoon.


Launceston Examiner, 29 October 1845

   We have lately had occasion to notice the frequency of unnecessary inquests, and the impropriety of allowing Captain Gardiner to preside at those held in the Female Factory, of which he is the avowed gaoler.  On this subject, there is but one opinion, which has been confirmed by the fact that an inquest was lately held in that building on the body of a still born child!  .  .  . 


Colonial Times (Hobart), 31 October 1845

   CORONER'S INQUEST. - Yesterday a highly respectable jury was empanelled to enquire into the death of Mr. Peter Gardiner, well known in the town as a Medical Dispenser, first with Mr. De La Hutt, and afterwards with Dr. Rowe.  The inquest was held at Mr. Hartam's, The William the Fourth, in Liverpool-street, Mr. Whitesides being the foreman.  Evidence was adduced to show, that the deceased went to bathe in the Derwent, at the Government Domain, on Wednesday; two or three friends went with him, and in vain persuaded him not to bathe.  The deceased, however, persisted, and plunged into the river, his companions sitting on a bank and looking on.  They saw him swim out about 150 yards from the shore, and he seemed to be enjoying himself in the water; presently, however, he swam round a point of rock, and was hidden from their view for a short time; when he was next seen, only as portion of his back was observed, his head and legs hanging down in the water.  One of his companions (Mr. Stubbs, the comedian) exclaimed, "Gardiner is drowning, for God's sake Clarkson make haste and save him, or he will be quite drowned."  Upon this Clarkson (holding a ticket-of-leave) ran down to the river side, tore off his clothes, and swam to the spot where the deceased was last seen.  Arriving thither, he found that the body had not sunk; on the contrary, the deceased lifted up one of his arms, and placed his hand on Clarkson's belly.  Clarkson, after a great exertion, and at the actual risk of his own life, succeeded in bringing the deceased to the shore, supporting him by the hair of his head and being subjected twice to drowning during the operation.  In the meantime Mr. Stubbs had sent off for Dr. Seccombe, who was quickly on the spot, and who, in conjunction with Dr. Rowe, used every means to resuscitate life.  It was Dr. Seccombe's opinion that the deceased must have been seized either with an attack of apoplexy or paralysis. The jury found a verdict of accidental death by drowning.  From the evidence, it appeared that the deceased was sober when he went into the river.  The jury, by their foreman (Mr. Whitesides), wished to recommend the witness Clarkson to the consideration of the Government for some further indulgence for his meritorious conduct upon the occasion, and the Coroner (Mr. Price) very kindly expressed himself most willing to forward and recommend any memorial that might be transmitted to that effect.


The Observer (Hobart), 31 October 1845


Saturday, October 25th, 1845.

   John Bywater was charged with the wilful murder of Charles Jordan, by stabbing him in the belly with a knife, oh the 1st September, at Mrs. Bennison's residence in Macquarie-street.  .  .  .   [Not Guilty.]


Colonial Times (Hobart), 31 October 1845

To the Editor of the Colonial Times of Tasmania.

   SIR, - Yesterday an Inquest was held under peculiar circumstances in this parish, at the house of Mr. Larsom, before Major Schaw, Coroner, and a respectable Jury of seven married men, all of these fathers, on the body of Jemima Pearson, a girl of fifteen years old.  By the evidence it appears about three weeks before she died, she complained slightly of illness, and on Friday last she was confined to her bed, and died on the evening of the dame day, so in the end her death was rather sudden. In a very few hours some wicked slanderer propagated some scandalous reports about the poor girl, and the cause of her death, &c.  An inquest was the consequence, and at the request of the deceased's friends, Dr. Coverdale, the Richmond surgeon, performed a post mortem examination on the body, which proved to the public that the malicious rumours afloat had not the slightest shadow of foundation. The verdict was "Died from extreme inflammation of the intestines."  What a pity it is that such reptiles in human shape cannot be brought to justice, and made a public example of.

A CORRESPONDENT   . Muddy Plains, Oct. 28, 1845.


Launceston Examiner, 1 November 1845

   INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Wednesday, upon the body of a child who died in consequence of severe scalding. The child, prior to death, received regular medical attendance, but death was the natural and understandable consequence of the accident.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 1 November 1845

CHILD SCALDED TO DEATH. - A Coroner's Inquest was held at The Good Woman, Bathurst-street, on Wednesday, on view of the body of Hannah Terry, aged 5 years, daughter of Thomas Terry, who resides at the Brick-fields.  From the statement of the disconsolate mother, it appeared that on Saturday afternoon, while her back was turned, the deceased child got up on a chair to reach something from the mantel-shelf, and over-balancing herself, fell down before the fire; and in the fall, upset a tea-kettle containing boiling water, which in a shocking manner, scalded the poor little thing, over the shoulder, back, &c.  Dr. Ward, successor to Dr. Haygarth, being sent for, promptly attended, and resorted to the usual means for the child's relief. She however lingered until Tuesday, when she died of the injuries received.  The jury returned a verdict if Accidental Death.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 5 November 1845

SUDDEN DEATH. - On Monday evening John Gardiner, a young man in the service of Mr., Price, shopkeeper, Brisbane-street, died under very affecting circumstances.  Deceased was in perfect health at tea-time, and afterwards went into the garden to work, but did not return at eight o'clock, as he was accustomed to do.  Search was made, and he was discovered sitting on a barrow motionless.  Mr. Price hastened out to the spot, when the young man looked at him, and heaved a heavy sigh and then immediately breathed his last.  A Coroner's Inquest was held yesterday, at Mr. Judson's, Launceston Hotel; Dr. Ward (who had been called in to deceased) was of opinion that death resulted from an effusion of blood on the brain, & the Jury returned a verdict accordingly.

The Observer (Hobart), 7 November 1845

DEATH FROM EXHAUSTION. - In consequence of information he received, the Coroner dispatched his Clerk, Mr. Todd, to North West Bay, on Wednesday, last, to investigate the cause of the death of a man named Charles Wood.  On his arrival at the hut, Mr. Todd discovered that the deceased was in low circumstances, and had been afflicted for some time, but so complete was his destitution that he had not been able to procure common necessaries, much less medical aid.  In this way he lingered on till death relieved him from the weight of care. He has left two children behind him, totally unprovided for.


Launceston Examiner, 8 November 1845

BODY FOUND. - The remains of a man in a mutilated state were found on the shore near Whirlpool Beach a few days ago, by two boatmen, who brought the body to shore.  The corpse was in an advanced stage of decomposition, but sufficient evidence of identity existed to show that it was the body of the unfortunate man formerly in Mr. Hudson's employ, who fell overboard from out of the river craft about three weeks ago.  An inquest sat, and returned the usual verdict.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 8 November 1845


AN Inquest was held on Thursday, at Mr. Cordell's, Ferry House, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., coroner, on view of the body of James White, a pass-holder, late in the service of Mr. J. Hudson, who came by his death under the following circumstances:-

   Henry James Gardiner deposed that he was in Mr. Hudson's employ, and deceased worked with him on board the Industry.  On the 20th September last they were working the craft up the river, when deceased fell overboard in Whirlpool Reach, and witness had not seen him since until to0day;l the body viewed by the jury is the same,.  Deceased was about 40 years old, and was on very good terms with witness.

   Andrew Kenny, a fisherman, proved the finding of the body at a place called the "Littler Elbow," at the lower end of Whirlpool Reach; it was floating.

   Dr. Ward - Had inspected the body, which seemed to have been in the water some time, band, from its appearance, he considered death had ensued from drowning.  The jury returned a verdict of Accidentally Drowned.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 11 November 1845


  On Saturday, an inquest was held at the White Horse, Liverpool-street, before John Price, Esq., Coroner, to enquire in to the death of one Helen Dight, who came to her death by falling off a dray. Evidence was adduced to the effect, that the unfortunate deceased, aged about 40 years, was riding from Hobart Town to Stoney Creek, on a dray driven by a man named Kerr; the road being bad and stoney, the dray lurched and deceased was thrown off [end of column missing] her spine.  She was conveyed to her residence, and Dr. Bright, who was speedily in attendance, rendered every assistance in his power; the poor woman was eventually taken to the hospital, where she expired.  Verdict: Accidental Death. - Out of a jury of seven, there were four publicans; and the jury-room contained some four or five doctors, who seemed - from what cause we could not ascertain - to tale a particular interest in the proceedings. 


Colonial Times (Hobart), 14 November 1845

To the Editor of the Colonial Times & Tasmania.

Clarence Plains, November 5, 1845.

   SIR, - Yesterday, an inquest was held here at the public inn of Mr. Shuttle, before Major Schaw, Coroner, and a Jury of seven, on the skeleton of a child apparently about seven months old.  Verdict - Found dead in the church yard.  I suppose you will say this is a rather uncommon inquest verdict, &c.  I will tell you how it originated.  About two months since a young woman was buried here, and most of the respectable settlers in the neighbourhood attended her funeral; one of the gentlemen strolling in the grave yard, found (through his dog smelling and scratching) the grave, as he supposed, of a child, and by putting his walking cane down, he found the coffin not more than eight inches from the surface; he acquainted the rest of the company, and no person present could form any idea as to whom the child could belong, as neither the clergyman nor sexton knew anything about it, and to all appearances it had laid there for twelve months.  So, after it being publicly known for about two months, it came to the knowledge of the Coroner, who instituted the above enquiry.  It is pretty well known the child did not belong to any person in the neighbourhood; there is not a doubt that it was brought from some other part, and pout clandestinely in the Clarence Plains churchyard, it being rather a retired spot; neither surgeon nor jury, of course, could tell how it came buy its death; it was enclosed in a shell, composed of rough boards, and very roughly put together; and to all appearances, it was partly forced into the box. - Yours, &c.  A CORRESPONDENT.


The Observer (Hobart), 14 November 1845


AN Inquest was held at the White Horse, Liverpool-street, on Saturday, at 2 o'clock, on view of the body of a woman, named Ellen Dight, who died in the General Hospital, on Thursday, Nov. 11.  The Jury sworn were Messrs. Charles Gun Stevens, John Parker, Edward Paine, William Lear, Jeremiah Hefford, William Baseman, and Mark Stump.

  It appeared on the evidence that the deceased lived with a man named William Eaton, who rents a piece of land at Sorell Rivulet, where he burns charcoal for the Hobart Town market.  On last Wednesday week the deceased accompanied a cart laden with charcoal to Town, and having disposed of her coal, she was returning home seated on some trusses of hay, and holding by a twitch stick by which the hay was compressed.  When opposite Dymnyrne House the wheel of the cart sank suddenly into a deep rut in the road, and the woman was pitched out, her head coming in contact with some stones.  She was immediately removed to the house of a man named Button, and medical aid was procured.  Dr. Casey first visited her, but finding that the people would not co-operate with him, and conceiving the woman to be drunk, and not seriously injure, he did not call again.  She was then removed to Eton's house, about four miles distant, whither she was carried in a rug spread upon two poles, and fitted with pillows.  Dr. Bright, who had formerly attended Eton, was called in, and he immediately concluded the case to be a hopeless one, but he continue to attend the woman for five days.  When first called in, Dr. Bright advised that the woman should be immediately removed to the General Hospital, as she required particular attendance which she could not receive at home, but this was obstinately refused by the woman.  Dr. Bright on the first day called at the Police Office, and obtained from the Police Magistrate an order for her admission into the Hospital, stating at this time to the Magistrate, his opinion of the case.  It was not until five days had elapsed that he could prevail on her to remove thither, and she was removed; she lingered but one day before death.  Dr. Bright and Mr. Staff Surgeon Macdonald gave their evidence on the Inquest; the former as to the treatment she received before admission to the Hospital, the latter as to the result of the post mortem examination of the body.  A difference of opinion existed between these gentlemen, as to the treatment, not very material in itself.  It appeared that a dislocation of the fifth vertebrae of the spine, was the immediate cause of death, and the jury returned a verdict of Accidental death, setting forth the circumstances specially.


Launceston Examiner, 15 November 1845

SUDDEN DEATH. - About a week since a sealer named William Adams was struck down by lightning, while in a boat at Waterhouse Point.  The fact was communicated to George Town, but we have not heard whether an Inquest was convened.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 18 November 1845


MELANCHOLY ACCIDENT. - SIX MEN DROWNED. - We regret to announce the sudden death, by drowning, of six persons, who were conveying the mail bag from Spring Bay to Maria Island, on Wednesday last; for the following particulars we are indebted to a correspondent at Maria Island.  The boat was observed to leave Spring Bay between 5 and 6 o'clock on Wednesday afternoon, and when about two or three miles from the main island, suddenly to disappear; still the impression was, that she had put back, as it was blowing heavily at the timer.  On the following morning two oars were drifted on shore at Maria Island, which told but too truly what had happened.  The schooner Marys lying off the Island at the time, a boat was despatched to Spring Bay, in the hope of hearing that some of the men might be saved.  In the meantime the mail-bag was washed ashore at Maria Island, and about 2 o'clock a boat was seen going ashore at Green Island. About 5 o'clock the boat despatched from the Marya, after a hard struggle, arrived from Spring Bay, without brining any intelligence, further that that the boat pushed off at ½ past 5, and that Mr. Allenby, the coxswain, and the crew, were all quite sober.  Mr. Price then went to Green Island, where the boat was found smashed to pieces, with the mizzen-sail clewed up; a straw hat and four muskets were also found there.  The general impression is, that the boat was running with her fore-sail before the wind, when a sudden gust caught her, and she capsized. "Singular to say," observes our informant, "they all predicted their fate for some days previous."  The names of the unfortunate deceased are Mr. Allenby (coxswain), Thomas and Williams (free), Hennessey, Allsop, and Williams (probationers).

   SUDDEN DEATH. - Yesterday evening, at about eight o'clock, Mr. William Warham, formerly a well-known merchant of this town, dropt down dead in Campbell-street, nearly opposite Dr. Officer's residence, with whom he had been conversing a few minutes before.  He had previously complained of an affection of the heart.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 18 November 1845

CHILD MURDER. - The proof which has occasioned so many convictions of child murder - the lungs floating in water - is now declared by the Judges to be insufficient. Sat a recent inquest upon a child found dead in a privy at Richmond, in Surrey, the following took place.  .  . 

   Mr. Baron Gurney having recently laid it down, on a trial of infanticide, that the mere proof of the inflation of the lungs was not enough to warrant a charge of murder against any one, other proof of the existence of a child, as its crying, was necessary.  .  .  . 


The Observer (Hobart), 18 November 1845


   INQUEST. - On Saturday an inquest was held at the Thatched House, New Wharf, on view of the body of a man named Thomas Drivers.  It appeared on the evidence that the deceased was steward on board the Scotia. Which vessel was lying at the New Wharf.  That on Monday week the Captain (who was below in the cabin) desired the deceased to go and shove off a boat which was striking against the stern, and that the deceased went on deck for that purpose, and was last seen descending by the piles of the wharf.  He was not seen to fall into the water, and being of very intemperate habits, it was matter of conjecture whether he had not gone away to some public house, or with some friend.  His body was found on Friday last by some men who were dragging the cove; and, although much disfigured by the fish, was easily identified.  The jury returned a verdict of Accidentally Drowned.


The Observer (Hobart), 21 November 1845

CORONER'S INQUEST. - On Wednesday last at 2 o'clock an inquest was held at the Caledonian, Mr. William Warham, clerk in the service of Mr. Milward, grocer, Elizabeth0street, who fell dead on the Monday night previous.  The decease had enjoyed generally good health, but on Monday he complained slightly of oppression on the chest and faintness. He went about 8 o'clock on Monday night to Dr. Officer, who prescribed for him, and deceased left the house, and almost immediately dropper down.  Dr. Crowther was shortly in attendance, and attempted to bleed him, but he breathed spasmodically, and died immediately.  The body was removed into the house of Mr. Griffiths by that gentleman, assisted by Dr. Crowther, and remained there until removed to his own house in Bathurst-street.  A post mortem examination of the body was made by Drs. Officer and Crowther, and upon their evidence the Jury found a verdict of "Died by the visitation of God, in a natural way, by disease of the heart."  We regret to add, that the deceased has left a widow and five children almost wholly unprovided for.


Courier (Hobart), 22 November 1845

SUDDEN DEATH. - On Thursday, at his residence in S-Argyle-street, Mr. Ned Hughes, of epilepsy.


The Observer (Hobart), 28 November 1845

MAGISTRATES. - Mr. Carter presided at the Police Office yesterday, in place of Mr. Price, who was attending an inquest at Oyster Bay, on the body of a man named Edward Lucas, a Probationer, who was killed by the falling of a tree.


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 3 December 1845



On Monday last an inquest was held at the Dover Castle, Elizabeth-street, before Arthur Gardiner, Esq., Coroner, on view of the body of John Veary, who expired at Saint John's Hospital, the day previous.

   Mr. Robert Davy, residing at Norfolk Plains, stated that on Tuesday evening last, deceased presented himself at his house, in a very exhausted condition, and alleging that he found himself wholly incapable of proceeding any further, begged to be accommodated with a lodging for the night.  His request was complied with, and he remained with witness the whole of the following day.  On Wednesday morning he complained of severe illness, and witness in consequence called in the assistance of Dr. Paton.  That gentleman having pronounced him to be in a very dangerous state, gave witness a note to the Rev. Mr. Davis.  Deceased was in consequence recommended to be removed to Saint John's Hospital, wither he was accordingly conveyed in a cart.  Deceased represented himself to witness as a free laboring man, looking for work; in pursuit of this objet he had, he said, travelled from Hobart Town, and had suffered much from hunger on the road.  Unable to pay for a lodging, he had slept repeatedly in the bush, and on two occasions had ben drenched to the skin by a continuous rain.

   The evidence of Dr. Paton was to the effect, that upon being called in to attend the deceased, he found him labouring under severe indisposition, arising from pulmonary inflammation.  He was troubled with a harassing cough, and other distressing symptoms.  Witness perveivi9ng that Mr. Davy could not, without great inconvenience to himself, afford him the accommodation which his situation appeared to require, recommended his case to the notice of Mr. Davis, who forthwith directed his removal to Saint John's Hospital.

   The Coroner being of opinion that such a proceeding was necessary, Messrs. Pugh and Grant performed a post mortem examination on the body, the result of which fully bore out the opinion previously expressed of his case by Dr. Paton.  In the course of his evidence, Mr. Grant stated that, during his short illness deceased informed him that he had been for eight days almost entirely destitute of food, and had caught a severe cold by sleeping out in the rain. Witness was of opinion that deceased's death was caused by inflammation of the lungs, accelerated by a want of the common necessaries of life. The Jury returned a verdict in accordance with this opinion.  The Coroner took occasion to pay a well merited compliment to Mr. Davy for his humanity in receiving under his roof the unfortunate deceased.


Launceston Examiner, 6 December 1845

DEATH FROM DROWNING. - A young man, named Robert Gaggy, in the employ of Mr. Williamson, was accidentally drowned about 11 o'clock on Wednesday morning, at the bathing place in the North Esk.  He was seen to slip off rock, and it was known that he was unable to swim; several people were present, and endeavoured to render assistance, but after struggling in the water for a short time, the unfortunate man sunk and rose no more.  At intervals as many as sixty people have been diving in search of the body, but at present without success. [The body has since been found.]


Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 6 December 1845

INQUEST. - This day an inquest was held at the Ferry House, Tamar-street, before Arthur Gardiner, Esquire, Coroner, touching the death of Robert Gegy, who was unfortunately drowned while bathing at the Cataract on Wednesday morning last.  Verdict - Accidental Death.


Launceston Examiner, 6 December 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held at the factory yesterday upon the body of a female child, and it having been satisfactorily proved that death resulted from natural causes, as verdict to that effect was returned.


Colonial Times (Hobart), 23 December 1845

CORONER'S INQUEST. - SUPPOSED MURDER. - A few days ago an inquest was held at Mr. Basstian's Tasmanian Inn, Campbell-street, to inquire into the death of an elderly [person,, named Clark (a sawyer at North-West Bay), who died in the Colonial Hospital.  The jury, of which Mr., Tonkin was the Foreman, was highly respectable.  It appeared that the deceased had come up to town, and was  beaten and otherwise ill-used by some persons on the New Wharf, and that so severely that he was obliged to go to the Colonial Hospital, where, as above stated, he died.  The inquest was adjourned to yesterday, when, after hearing additional evidence, the jury returned a verdict of Wilful Murder against some person or persons unknown.  Facts were also elicited to show a system of management at the Colonial Hospital which, in our opinion, is extremely reprehensible.  It appeared that when Clark was received at the Hospital, and the assistant in attendance believed he could not survive above five or six hours, no medical officer was sent fort.  We hear also that the wife of the deceased was refuse admittance to the death-bed of her husband.  The jury, thro9ugh their Foreman (Mr. Tonkin), passed a severe censure upon such mismanagement.


The Observer (Hobart), 23 December 1845


ON Monday, December 15, an inquest was held at Basstian's Hotel, in Campbell-street, on view of the body of Adam Clarke, who died in the General Hospital, on Saturday last.

   The jury retired to the Hospital to view the body, and when they returned the following witnesses were called:-

   Maria Clarke. - The body I have just seen in the Colonial Hospital is that of my husband, Adam Clarke; we lived at North West Bay, and he was a free man, aged 57 years'; he came from North West Bay in King's craft the Monday before the Regatta, which would have been the 1st of December; he was in good health then, and at work up to the day he left the Bay; he had complained of a pain which shifted about his body, sometimes in his side, his stomach, and back; he was told it was the lumbago; he did not receive any injury before he left the Bay that I know of; he strained himself by lifting a log, but when he found that the pain moved about, he did not think it was occasioned by that; at times he felt the pain in the side very much; after he left home did not see him before last Tuesday; I saw him again in the hospital on Wednesday; ; he told me he was very bad, for they knelt on his side and robbed him; he did not then think he was dying; he told me he should get better attendance in the hospital than at home, and he would stop there two or three days until the doctors would let him go; he did not know who robbed him; he said it was two men; he told me to go home with the children, and he would be home in a few days; I have never seen him cough; he was well and hearty at his work, with the exception of the pain he sometimes complained; he said he had a knowledge of some of the men; that he used to chop wood for us; we had so many men chopping wood for us that I cannot say who it might be; I asked him to tell me his name, and he said, "Oh, never mind; when I get better, I'll tell you about it."

  By a juror. - I have no particular recollection of any person who cleaned up the yard or chopped wood for us.

   Colonial Assistant Surgeon Crook. - I knew the deceased; I first saw him in my bedroom on the morning of the 6th December in the Colonial Hospital; he came to me to examine him; he said he had been kneeled down, robbed, and hurt the evening previous; he said by two men, but he did not name them; asked him particularly as to his knowledge of the men, and he denied having any knowledge of them; I considered him severely hurt, but not dangerously; there was no external mark; he complained of pain in his side, and he said he had spit some blood; there was no appearance of it then; the pain was in his right side; he said he had spit blood after he had been hurt; he mentioned no other symptoms; I sent him for a hospital order, and he got one and was admitted; he was treated by Dr. Agnew, and I treated him specially on Thursday evening for pneumonia, under which he was then suffering in an acute form; he was then seriously ill, but not more so than persons generally are under pneumonia; I considered him dangerously ill then; I did not consider him suffering under that disease in consequence of the injuries he had received; it might have been aggravated by it, but the disease was mainly independent of the injury; I assisted at the post mortem examination of the body yesterday morning at 8 o'clock; the deceased died the night previous; I discovered on opening the right thorax the right lung exhibited an appearance of active and extensive inflammation; on continuing the dissection there was a portion of coagulated blood attached to the under surface of the liver, and surrounded by a deposit of coagulated lymph; on removing this there was a laceration of the liver on the part on which the lymph was in contact; there was no inflammation of the peritoneum, nor had the effused blood occasioned any disturbance in that cavity; on examining the ribs, there was a fracture of the external  arc of the sixth rib at the curvature, not extending through the whole bone, and not in any way injuring the lining membrane of the cavity within; there were numerous adhesions between the lining membrane and the lung, showing previous disease in that situation; my opinion is, that he died from inflammation of the lungs; the fissure in the liver and the fracture I have described were recent, corresponding to the time, a few days, which he represented to have received the injury; I do not think that the inflammation on the lung was induced by the injuries he received; the initiation of the disease was not from the injury; it might have been affected by it; there had been a tendency to inflammation of the lung long before; I think the pneumonia of which he died would not have assumed the graver character it did if it had not been for the injuries he received; when I last saw the deceased he did not believe he was dying; I think the tendency existed independent of the injuries, an d possibly the development also; I am certain as to the tendency from the appearance of the parts; I think the pneumonia arose from natural causes;  he described to me that he was in a public house, and that there two men were with him; they asked him where he was going to sleep, and he said he did not know; they said he should go with them on board their craft, and when they got nearer the tank, they knocked him down, and robbed him of 6 Pounds.

   By a juror. - It is possible he might have been alive now, if he had not received those injuries.

   By the Coroner. - When I first saw him, I did not think his case  required immediate attendance, and for that reason I  kept him in the Hospital some time before I sent him for an order; there were bad symptoms, such as spitting blood, although I saw no blood, but not requiring immediate assistance; the injuries he received were decidedly of a dangerous character, but they did not  assume a dangerous character in this instance;  two diseases seldom act on the system with the same force, at the same time;  the energies of the system being  directed to one in particular.  Had he not had even monia [pneumonia?] the injuries on the liver might have had a dangerous influence.

   James W. Agnew. - I am a duly qualified medical practitioner; I attended the decease since the 6th of this month; when I first saw him he complained of cough and spitting, with a pain in the right side of the chest; I immediately put him under treatment for an affection of the lungs, and I continued to treat him for that up to the time of his death; he told me that he had been kicked and beaten by two men previous to his coming to the Hospital; during the course of treatment, her had two or three fits of an apoplectic character; he said he had had them many years before; I attended, and made a post mortem examination of the body with Dr. Crook; on opening the chest, the right lung, which was the only one affected. Was found to  present no marks of external violence; when cut in two, it was found to be  much inflamed, and presented the appearance of pneumonia, which was in an advanced stage; there were several adhesions between the lung and the lining of the chest, of a nature showing the existence of previous  but not remote disease; the sixth rib was partially fractured near its angle; a small clot of blood was found under surface of the liver, and when removed, it was found to cover a fissure extending some depth into the liver; there was also another slight fissure about an inch and a half from the other; they did not correspond with the fracture of the rib; a few ounces of blood were found in the cavity of the abdomen, but there was no perytineal inflammation; the deceased died of inflammation of the lungs, but from the injuries received; the wound of the liver is very often a fatal injury, but the pneumonia was the cause of his death; he was laboring under inflammation of the lungs when I took him into the Hospital; the disease was then commenced; the rupture of the liver and the fracture of the rib might have been accelerated the inflammation of the lungs, but there had previously existed a tendency to inflammation.

  The injuries might have accelerated the disease; he did not  mention to me who committed the violence; he merely said it was done by two men; he did not think he was dying; a fall from a height might produce a rupture of the liver, but I don't  think a simple fall in the street would do it; a kick would have done it; the injury in the chest might have been done by a crush, but the injury to the liver, I think, must have been done by a sudden blow, such as a kick.  I think his death was certainly hastened by the injuries he received, but I would not say that it was caused by them; I should mention that one portion of the stomach was highly injected with blood.

   By a Juror. - His lying on the Wharf all night after he did receive the injuries, would have greatly accelerated his decease.

   The Coroner suggested, as there was no evidence as to the two men who committed the injuries described, that the inquest should be adjourned, to give an opportunity of searching for evidence of these facts.  The inquest was accordingly adjourned to Monday, the 22nd December.  The jury were accordingly held to appear on that day.


The Observer (Hobart), 26 December 1845


ON Monday last an Inquest was held at Allison's Wine Vaults, Liverpool-street, on view of the body of as female child which was found in the water off Franklin's Wharf, on that morning.

   John Rowe. - I am a prisoner of the Crown, employed on the Franklin Wharf; I saw the body of the female child I have just seen in the Hospital, in the water near the Wharf, this morning; the body was sunk in the water; I found it about twenty minutes before nine o'clock; the body was partly wrapped in the towel in which it now is;  the legs, thighs, and part of the body was bare; there was a mark of violence on the neck, near the shoulder, which seemed as if it had been bruised; it was opposite the hut where we cook our meals; I was working there yesterday, and I did not see it there; I should have seen it, if it had been there.

   John Halladay. - I am a prisoner of the Crown; this witness, who pulled the body out of the water corroborated the evidence of the last witness, and added the following particulars: - The body was underneath the Jetty, between the piles, a few  feet from the shore; I saw the child taken to the Hospital; I saw some marks on the body, but they appeared to me to have been made by the fishes.

   By a juror. - I have been at work there fort ten months; I have not seen any one about the spot for the last two days, who did not belong to the gang.

   Dr. Agnew. - I am a legally qualified medical practitioner; I have made a post mortem examination of the female child which lies at the Hospital; the child was not born alive; it never breathed; it was still born.  The jury returned a verdict of still born.


The Observer (Hobart), 30 December 1845

INQUEST. 0An inquest was held, on Saturday last, at North-West Bay, before Mr. Price, and a Jury of the inhabitants, on view of the body of a man named John Armourer, who met his death under the following circumstances:- He was paddling a boat across the bay, and it is supposed that he dropped one of his paddles, in trying to recover which the boat, which was very crank, capsized.  The unfortunate man's trowsers caught in some of the iron-work of the boat, and he was thus kept underneath, notwithstanding the struggles he had evidently made. The jury returned a verdict of Accidentally Drowned.


Launceston Examiner, 31 December 1845

INQUEST. - An inquest was held on Tuesday upon the body of a seaman who fell into the river while endeavouring to get on board the Adelaide.  The body was picked up over the bar.

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