Smith, James

Smith, James    1893 March 24th

Mr Smith, coroner for the borough, held an inquest on Tuesday, at the Council Chamber, at four pm., on the body of a man named James Smith, who had died suddenly at his residence, No 2, Spring Place, Endless Street, on the night preceeding. The foreman of the jury was Mr W Salter Mussell.

Emily Smith said she resided at No 2, Spring Place, Endless Street. Her late husband always enjoyed good health and never had a doctor. He seemed quite well when he went to bed the night before about 10, and did not complain. He had his supper about 9.30, consisting of bread and meat. The bread was new and the meat was a high piece (eye-piece). She slept with him and at about 11.15 she heard the deceased make a noise in his throat. She said to him “You are lying on your wrong side,” but he did not reply and never spoke to her afterwards. Witness sent her son-in-law for Dr Ellis, who subsequently came and found her husband dead. The deceased worked for Mr Kimber, corn merchant, as a labourer, and was 65 years of age.

Mr Sidney Ellis stated that he was a medical practitioner at Salisbury. He was called on the night previous at 12.30 to see deceased and found him dead. On enquiring he found the man had been eating supper, consisting of new bread and meat, before going to bed. He believed that the new bread swelled and distended the stomach, and pressing against the heart had stopped its action, and that deceased died from syncope. Of course that was only his opinion. He had never attended deceased before. He examined him, and found no suspicious circumstances whatever.

The jury returned a verdict of “Death from natural causes.”

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