Bowns, George

Bowns, George         1877 June 2nd             East Harnham

On Thursday evening last an inquest was held at the “Swan,” East Harnham, before Mr R H Wilson, deputy coroner, on the body of George Bowns, jun., who accidentally met his death the same morning.

Reuben Smith, who was the first witness, said he worked for Mr Bowns, of the “Swan” Inn, and assisted in the brewing. He saw the deceased just before 9 that morning when he came back from breakfast, and deceased said he would mind the copper whilst witness was away. He never saw him again alive. The deceased probably went into the cellar to get some barm from the cask to work the other beer; the cask was three parts full, and to get it he must have leant forward deeply into the cask, the fumes from which would be very strong and would overpower him. He possibly over-balanced himself. He was taken out between 12 and 1 and witness assisted.

Frederick Musselwhite, a farmer living at East Harnham, said he very well knew the deceased, who did not live with his father, but had been accustomed to brew with him for some years. He was called in by deceased’s father, who said his son was in the cask, and he assisted in taking him out, which was done with some difficulty, the boards over the cask having to be cut away. His father said he must have been leaning too far into the cask, and the fumes of the beer overpowered him. He was 35 years of age. The verdict was “Accidental Death.”

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