Sunday, 28 April 2013

Echoes of our Past NEWS ....... 25th April 1863

Read all about it……. Echoes of our past NEWS

What was in the local news this weekend in 1863?


*Burglary at Baslow –

Mr Coates the druggist had been burgled twice before and so this time he was lucky to have woken when he saw an intruder stood at his bedroom door holding a candle.  Mr Coates kept a revolver at his bedside and so on sight of this the burglar fled.

When downstairs it was found that bread, potted beef and brandy had been stolen from the house and 1s 7d in copper from the shop. 

Mr Coates kept his money, which was a “considerable sum” in the bedroom with him.


*Froggatts Yard an unruly place to live –

v  Matthew Ryan an Irish man was charged after he spat at Bridget Murphy.  Bridget had left her house on Froggatts Yard to collect water when Matthew ran out of his house and spat into her face.  The incident was witnessed by Judy Burke.  Matthew was sentenced to two months hard labour.

v  Bridget Holland was in trouble after she stole water from the Chesterfield Water Works.  Bridget lived on Froggatts Yard and she volunteered to pay for the water in the court.  She was fined 1s and costs.

*”another nymph in trouble” –

A young woman of 18 years of age was charged with causing a disturbance on Low Pavement at about midnight on the Sunday night. 

The young lady was Mary Hibbert who had begun her life of prostitution at the young age of 14 years old.  She had been arrested before and gaoled. 

On the evening in question Mary was outside Mr Mason’s shop talking loudly to another woman, they were both clearly drunk.  P.C Windle asked them to be quiet and move on but Mary refused and began using bad language.

At her hearing Mary made an inferred allegation against P.C Windle when she stated “if he (Constable Windle) had not given me liberties, I should not have done what I did”.  The Mayor was obviously concerned about what Mary was insinuating and asked her what she meant by this statement.  Mary held her silence and simply smiled at the Mayor. 

She was gaoled for one month’s hard labour.

*Sad case of suicide at Ashover –

An elderly lady named Miss Sterndale took her own life last Saturday morning.  Miss Sterndale was a very well respected lady of the village and although she had been ill for some time it was a shock for the villagers to hear this sad news. 

She had taken herself down into the wine cellar of her home where she had hung herself.  She was found soon after but it was too late to resuscitate her. 

The inquest was held on the same day as the death at the Devonshire Arms and a verdict of insanity was declared.

*Death of Eliza Holmes –

Poor little Eliza was only 9 years old, the daughter of Alfred Holmes she lived at Whittington, her father was a farm labourer.

Eliza was described by her father as “not a healthy child”.  On the Wednesday she had been to school but was complaining about a pain in her left side.  That night she went to bed in reasonable spirits with what looked like a slight cold. 

The next morning Eliza was dressed when Alfred came home at breakfast time but she was laid on the sofa complaining of head ache and still the pain in her side.  They gave her 1/4oz of castor oil and left her to rest.  During the afternoon her mother Mrs Mary Ann Holmes administered Eliza a teaspoon of Turkey rhubarb and magnesia, and then at around 10pm she took another 1/2oz of castor oil.

During the night Eliza became confused and by Friday morning she was very ill.  Mr Marshall the doctor was sent for and found her to be vomiting.  Tragically at 6.30 am on Friday 17th April young Eliza passed away.

The inquest gave a verdict of “sudden death from disease of the heart”


*John Higginbottom draper to Mary Ann Short, daughter of Mr Thomas Short of Lordsmill Street on 14th April at the Wesleyan Chapel, Chesterfield

*Mr George Sampson of Tibshelf to Miss Sarah Booth of the Green Dragon Inn, Mansfield on 16th April at Mansfield


*B Maynard Lucas Esq aged 71 years at Highfield, Derbyshire on 18th April

*Mary Lloyd wife of Evan Lloyd Esq at St John’s Wood, London on 19th April, sister of Dr T Jones surgeon of Chesterfield

*Mr Henry Hibbert aged 37 years, landlord of the Castle Inn on 19th April

*Master Philip Woodward aged 5 months at Calver on 12th April

*Honourable Louisa Cavendish aged 84 years at Chiselhurst on 17th April, widow of the late William Cavendish, mother of the Duke of Devonshire

*Mr Daniel Barratt aged 68 years farmer of Curbar on 18th April

*Mater Frederick Coates aged 7 months of Curbar on 19th April


*A walking bet –

A man named T Johnson of Heeley attempted to walk 50 miles in 10 hours for a bet of £10.

He set off at Hyde Park, Sheffield and many came out to cheer him on.  At odds of 6 to 4 the “old scythe bearer” looked set to achieve his gaol.

He walked really well and had walked 25 miles in 4 hours 54 minutes at which time he had a small refreshment break then back on to the trail he went.  He was looking really happy and easily reaching his target until he got to 45 miles and which point he only had 1 hour, 4 minutes and 20 seconds left to walk the remaining 5 miles. 

His odds of achieving the bet were now 3 to 1 and he was now beginning to show signs of exhaustion.  So much so that at 47.25 miles he had no other option than to give up and he ended the walk.  He had walked for 9 hours and 21 minutes and it was said that had he been looked after in a manner fitting to the task he would have easily achieved his goal.

In compensation he was fed sherry, brandy and cold water which left him in a stupefied state.


*Canary magic –

A canary bird belonging to Samuel Beardsley of Clay Cross was causing much excitement after she hatched 5 birds from 4 eggs.  The miraculous event happened on 17th April and all of the baby birds were said to be doing well

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