Kimber, George

Kimber, George               1877 December 8th

On the evening of Friday, the 30th ult., Mr George Kimber, an old and respected citizen, died suddenly at his residence in the Butcher-row. The deceased gentleman has for many years carried on the business of a corn factor, and during the time he has been associated with the city has by his uniformity of character and correct business habits, gained the esteem of all with whom he has come in contact. Up to the time of his death he has been in the full enjoyment of his health; and was sergeant of the 1st Wilts Rifle Volunteer Band – a post he filled with honour to himself, and credit to the band.

On the afternoon of the following day (Saturday) an inquest was held by Mr George Smith, city coroner, in the Council Chamber. The Coroner said that ten minutes previous to the death of the deceased, he (deceased) appeared perfectly well; and no doubt from the medical evidence they would be able to determine as to the cause of death.

Dr Blackmore, medical practitioner of Salisbury, stated that about 9.45 on the previous evening, he was called on to attend deceased. He went at once, and on arriving at the residence found him lying on the floor in the front room, quite dead. The body was warm, and life could have been extinct barely four minutes. He had not attended deceased recently; and had not heard him complain of ill health. There was no evidence of convulsion, and the pupils of the eye were equal and natural. There was no blood or froth about the mouth. He attributed the cause of death from the suddenness of the attack, and the absence of convulsion, to disease of the heart; and he was entirely of opinion that it was from natural causes. He (deceased) had made a hearty supper just before his death, and when the stomach thus became distended there was all the greater likelihood of pressure on the heart.

A juror : It has been reported that he drank a quantity of cold water just before his death.

Dr Blackmore said Mrs Kimber told him he took a single glass of cold water, but in his opinion death could not be attributed to that.

William Godwin said he knew deceased, who kept a corn factor’s shop at No 10, Butcher-row. Late the previous evening – about half past nine – he was called by a boy to the assistance of Mrs Kimber. He immediately went into their house, and on his entering saw deceased sitting in a chair with a newspaper on his knees. Mrs Kimber said “for God’s sake, Mr Godwin, see what is the matter with my husband.” He spoke to deceased, but he did not answer. Deceased just lifted his right arm, and his throat gurgled, and he fell dead in his (witness’s) arms. With assistance he laid him out on the floor, and in about three minutes Dr Blackmore arrived, and he pronounced him dead. Dr Wilks was also present.

Supt Mathews shortly after death of deceased was made acquainted with this fact. He immediately proceeded to the residence, and found deceased lying on the floor in the front room. He locked the door, and took possession of the key. He had ascertained that the age of deceased was 51 last birthday.

A verdict of death from disease of the heart was returned.

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