Greenland, Hannah

Greenland, Hannah     1884 October 18th       Frome

On Tuesday afternoon an inquest was held at the Bell Inn, Buckland Dynham, near this town, before Mr W Muller, coroner, on the body of Hannah Greenland, widow, aged 73 years, who died on the previous Saturday evening before she had been seen by a medical man. Mr G W Bradbury, clerk to the guardians, attended the inquiry on their behalf.

From the evidence it appeared that deceased was about on Friday, and dug potatoes, but in the afternoon complained of being cold and ill. Next day she was worse and feverish and did not get up.

A neighbour (Mrs Dowden) saw her and volunteered to go for a doctor. She went to Mr Weaver, one of the overseers, and got a written order for the attendance of Dr F E Pearse, parish medical officer, and walked to Frome, a distance of three miles, and saw Dr Pearse. She told him that the deceased was very ill, but he refused to attend unless Mrs Dowden went to Mells (four miles distant) and obtained an order from the relieving officer. The messenger said she could not do that. She then got some medicine from a chemist. Shortly after returning to Buckland and giving deceased a dose of the medicine, she died.

Dr Pearse said he did not understand that the case was one of urgency. After a lengthened inquiry the jury returned a verdict to the effect that deceased died of natural causes, and at their request the coroner expressed his regret that Dr Pearse did not visit the deceased when sent for. Dr Pearse also expressed his regret that he did not do so, but he thought it was a case of ordinary sickness. The coroner suggested that in future the overseer’s orders should state when the cases were urgent.

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