A child-burning case – awful as it is – also raised the issue of how is a child like Ernest Drake to be suitably treated for burns which occurred in a very rural location – there will be inevitable delays, and the doctor seemed to feel that the child would be better quickly transported to Salisbury Infirmary. The death of Jacob Kite could seemingly have been due to any number of causes, but the doctor – as often – was able to clear it up.
The death of Edwin Burridge was by diarrhoea, seemingly straight forward, yet the Coroner reflected current concerns by getting reassurance from the doctor that cholera was not involved. The Salisbury Times made great play over the death of Job Ranger – fortunately the doctor was able to simplify the truth of the matter.
The most sensational case of the year is that of Henry Richards, involving a double murder by shooting, and a police hunt for the killer, with a desperate struggle – this is the only case I have so far read to end with the death sentence. A ‘Revolting Story’ is that of Clara Lawrence, a teenager subject to epileptic fits and who was ‘mentally imbecile,’ and yet was made pregnant by someone, eventually resulting in her sad death.
Perhaps the most remarkable occurrence is the deaths of the brothers Snelgar at Whiteparish, the inquest being for Henry Snelgar. Three aged brothers dying within ten days of each other. Rural poverty is again clear to see in the case of Jane Maton.
When the railway was created through a village, it sometimes created a new ‘path’ which people would prefer to walk along to get somewhere – this was the reason given in the Caroline Coward case for the deceased being on the line. The small paragraph afforded to the case of Edward Cully is perhaps indicative of how many needless deaths occurred in railway working – yet again, A does not know where B is, it seems so obvious to us…
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