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Read a story in an 1850s newspaper - it was a miscarriage of justice, I tell you!!!

(9 Posts)
Igloo71 Sat 26-Nov-16 18:40:54

We've just moved into an old cottage, I've been researching the area for local gossip history on Ancestry and Find My Past with the free 14 day trial. A couple of interesting stories came up regarding the local gentry and landowners.

I then decided to research the village where I grew up. The headline "Girl Frightened to Death" from a number of local and national newspapers in 1858 grabbed my attention. Basically, Martha aged 13 was walking down the road with a group of friends when they came upon a coffin, which was moving and making scary sounds. They ran away terrified but went back to the area after bumping into someone to see two 19 year old lads carrying the coffin away. They admitted they'd been trying to scare the girls and walked off.

The next day, Martha started vomiting blood, becoming ill and died. The post mortem revealed "death was caused by rupture of the gall bladder and extravasation of bile over the external surface of the intestine and stomach. The fright had probably caused the rupture, though it might have resulted from vomiting. The jury returned a verdict of Manslaughter against F and M and they were committed for trial at the assizes".

A bit more research and I think they went to trial at the County Court, but then I can't find them......

It's been playing on my mind and I feel I need to know what happened...... damn you 19th century record keeping smile

YoungPretenderMortificado Sat 26-Nov-16 20:18:29

shock That is quite a story!

So you think it was just a coincidence?

Igloo71 Sat 26-Nov-16 21:14:06

Yes, definitely a horrible, tragic coincidence. The poor girl didn't stand a chance with a ruptured gall bladder, but the boys were 20, silly practical joke which came back to haunt them.

I also discovered an exciting story just up the road from our new house. Wealthy socialite of the 1930s, about to be engaged to a titled gent. Reports she's been attacked in London when someone tried to kiss her. Also received threatening letters. Then vanishes! Turns up a week later on the doorstep of her boyfriend's parents, claiming amnesia. She did marry him eventually after a delayed wedding. Would love to know what happened there.

Chanatan Sat 26-Nov-16 21:28:10

www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs-magazine-monitor-28484148
is this relevant OP,they were acquitted

Igloo71 Sat 26-Nov-16 21:46:47

YES! Thanks so much for finding that and really pleased they were acquitted. I can sleep easy tonight!!

Footle Sun 27-Nov-16 08:31:07

Dear Igloo, may all of your worries be 150 years old !

WatchingFromTheWings Sun 27-Nov-16 08:39:17

Love stuff like this! I'm a family historian/genealogist. One of the people involved in the article has the same surname as me....so now I'm wondering if there's a connection (probably not). grin

ThePoloHole Sun 27-Nov-16 08:44:15

Our newspaper does it! Reports on old magistrate cases from years ago.

There was a woman who was convicted of glassing her drunk husband even though 3 other witnesses said she wasn't there and actually it was someone else. Husband was in the pub with his mistress (daughter of the landlord) and the landlord also said it was her. One of the witnesses to her being elsewhere was the local doctor!

She was sentenced to a month of hard labour!

ThePoloHole Sun 27-Nov-16 08:44:23

I was furious for her

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