Wills, infant

Wills, infant      1888 March 31st

On Tuesday morning the City Coroner (Mr G Smith) held an inquiry at the Wyndham Arms Hotel, London Road, touching the death of the infant male child of John and Elizabeth Wills, of 39, Scotland Row, Park Street, which took place suddenly on Monday morning. Mr F Dorrell was elected foreman of the jury.

Mary Ann Wills, eldest daughter of the bereaved parents, with whom she lives, was called. She stated that her father was a currier employed at Messrs Ware, Bros., and had thirteen in family living. Deceased was born on the 27th February and had not been healthy since its birth. Mr Coates had attended the mother since its birth. Deceased was in its usual health about a quarter past six on Monday morning, the mother being in bed with it at the time. The mother next saw it at half past seven when it was lying on her left arm, dead. Witness had not heard the child cry between the time it went off to sleep and when it was found dead. Witness sent for Mrs Cox, the nurse, first, and after that they sent for Mr H Coates.

Harcourt Coates, medical practitioner, said he was called about nine o’clock on Monday morning to see the deceased. The child was quite dead when he arrived, and consequently he could not certify as to the cause of death. He attended the mother, who had been confined by a midwife and was not doing well. He also saw the child, which was very delicate. He had not attended it since. He thought the circulation of blood was weak and probably the child had been huddled up to its mother’s breast, and fainted and died. The discolouration at the back of the neck was due to natural causes. There were no symptoms of convulsions. He attributed death to a weak heart and natural causes.

A verdict in accordance with the medical testimony was returned.


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