Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Update of the PAST NEWS.... 1st February 1890

Catch up on the full story of last weeks NEWS...........

*Missing man –
It wasn’t until three months later in April that Charles’s body was found.  His particulars in the local Derbyshire Times are slightly different in that he was actually named Samuel Hartshorn /e.

The River Hipper and River Rother had been dragged many times by the County Police Force in an attempt to find him, but it wasn’t until Monday 21st April 1890 that he was eventually found.  The gruesome discovery was made by a young chap named Arthur Rayner when he found Samuel floating on the top of the water near to Messrs Markham and Company’s Foundry.  It was around 8.30 am in the morning.  Arthur had at first thought that the body was a pile of rags, but on further investigation found it to be a decomposed body.

The body was in a terrible “most shocking and sickening” state, but pieces of clothing were identified as belonging to Samuel.  P C Oliver of the County Police recovered the body and removed it to a shed on the foundry of Messrs Markham and Company.

An inquest was held that same day in the evening at the Station Hotel at Chesterfield after the jury had undertaken the unenviable job of viewing the body Markham’s Foundry.  William Hartshorn the brother of Samuel confirmed that the body was that of Samuel.  He was able to be sure of this by its “stature, whiskers, clothes and boots”.  He also confirmed that Samuel was actually only 43 years old, not 64 as originally recorded.  He said that he left his home on Saturday 25th January and had not been seen by him since that time.  A witness did see Samuel on his way to Chesterfield town centre at 3pm that afternoon.

Another witness named John Hartshorn also gave evidence and confirmed that it was the body of Samuel.  He last saw Samuel on Low Pavement and he was sober at this time, but he was fond of a drink on a Saturday night.  Samuel had been shopping and had purchased “some meat, herrings and oranges and sweets for the children”.

Thomas Gill an engine driver from Hasland had also seen Samuel of the night he went missing, at around 8pm – but he thought that he was “worse for beer”.  He saw him again later that evening at 11.30pm in a field in between Horns Bridge and the White Houses at Hasland.  Thomas spoke to Samuel and asked him if he was going to Hasland, to which he replied “I’m all right”.  At this Thomas took Samuel's arm to lead him home but Samuel refused to follow.  He was carrying a brown paper bag.

Arthur Rayner confirmed that on Monday he was employed at Messrs Markham and Company when he saw something floating in the river.  The point of the river was about 17ft.  He got a piece of long iron piping and moved the body to the edge of the river.

P C Oliver told how Samuel was not reported missing until 27th January.  The night he went missing the rivers had flooded.  Over the next weeks many attempts at dragging the rivers were undertaken.  They handed bills out to passers-by with Samuel's description on, round about 1000 of them were distributed. 

The Coroner finalised the inquest by stating that it was impossible to ascertain how Samuel ended up in the water.  The verdict of “found drowned” was passed.  It was also noted that whilst they were searching for Samuel two other bodies were found in the same river.

Samuel was a married man; he married Clara Burton in Radford, Nottinghamshire in 1875.  On the 1881 census they are living at Charles Street, Grassmoor.  They have three young children; Leonard aged 5 years, Ellen aged 2 years and baby John aged 1 year old. 
One year on after the death of Samuel and Clara is still living on Charles Street, with her children; Leonard aged 15 years, John aged 11 years, Ann aged 9 years, Samuel aged 6 years, George aged 3 years and baby Naboth (who was named after Samuel’s father) .  Clara must have either been pregnant or had just given birth to this little boy at the time of Samuel’s disappearance and death.  Their daughter Ellen would now be around 11 / 12 years old.  She is not living with the family.  I have been unable to locate her on the 1891 census but by 1901 she is a housemaid for Louisa Sitwell and Gosden House in Shalford, Surrey.  The house is being cared for by a caretaker and 2 other staff in 1891 so it may well be that Ellen was working for the Sitwell family at that time and they may have been out of the country in 1891.
What about the two bodies found in the Rivers?
As for the body of the woman found when the police were originally looking for Samuel, I have not been able to find anymore mention of this case and of whom the woman was.
As mentioned at the inquest there were two bodies found.  I can find another article for a man named James Sanders Madin who had apparently been missing for a few weeks.  An earlier article told how James had gone missing on Saturday 22nd February at about 7.30 and was not seen again.  He had taken the route across the Militia Fields towards Wharf Lane.  It was feared then that as it was such a foggy night he may have fallen into the River Rother.
His body was found on Sunday 2nd March at around 2.55 whilst the River Rother was being dragged.  The inquest into his death was held at the St Helens Inn on Sheffield Road and it was heard how James was a 20 year old French polisher.  He lived with his brother John Madin at 1 Victoria Street.  James and John were the sons of Herbert Madin a painter who lived on Saltergate.


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