Liverpool Mercury, May 5th 1885

The suicide in a Liverpool cemetery

Inquest and verdict

Yesterday the deputy coroner of Southwest Lancashire, Mr HUSBAND, held and inquest in the Prince George Hotel, Longmoor Lane, on the body of Peter ROBERTSON, who was found dead in Kirkdale Cemetery about 8am on Sunday last.

The first witness called was Dr Robert ANDERSON, who states he was a physician practising in Walton. He made a post mortem examination yesterday afternoon on the body of a man which was lying in the mortuary in Kirkdale Cemetery. He found no evidence of external injury, the stomach was almost black, with a, hard, dry burning feeling. On opening it he found some fluid which proved to be carbolic acid, the passage from the mouth to the stomach was corroded and burned. In his opinion death was due to poisoning by carbolic acid.

Hugh CANDLISH, 6 Beaconsfield Rd, Walton, a drapers assistant and brother-in-law of the deceased, said the deceased had been missing since the 25th August last. He was a native of Scotland aged about 47, a marine engineer and his last home was in Pinder St, Stanley Rd. The grave on which the body was found was that of his wife and daughter. Witness found two bottles and a glass on the grave. Witness had no idea where the deceased had come from. The letter [produced] was in the deceased hand writing and addressed to a brother-in-law who was at sea.

The Coroner "He refers in the letter to someone person as George, who is that?"

"A brother of mine in Glasgow"

"Have you read the letter?

The Coroner requested the witness to read the letter in the meantime calling Henry MOON, of 30 Neston St, Walton, a porter, who was on Sunday morning in Kirkdale Cemetery with his two little girls, one of whom drew his attention to a man lying near one of the graves. Witness went to the body and found the deceased lying on the footpath, he was dead, his hands cold and blue, his clothing was dry. Witness informed the cemetery keeper and the police.

The Coroner addressed Mr CANDLISH saying, "Are you satisfied as to the manner by which the deceased came by his death, presuming this letter was written by him immediately before his death?

"No doubt whatever. He must have been in a very low state of mind and has mention here in the letter that he had lost his wife and daughter and this was preying upon his mind"

The Coroner, continuing said, he did not think it a letter that he would give to reporters to be published; it would only be pandering to the curiosity of the public. There are two pints in the letter which are evidence, He says, that the first thing he heard when coming home from sea was the death of his daughter and he could not realise the loss, so you see how it preyed upon his mind, he ultimately says that he walked 272 miles to Liverpool, so that he may die on the grave of his daughter.

PC 101, William JACKSON of the county constabulary was called, and stated, he was stationed at Fazakerley. On Sunday at 8am he received information from the witness MOON that the dead body of a man was lying on one of the walks in Kirkdale Cemetery, he went at once and found the deceased as described, and the body was removed to the mortuary. He found the pocket book and letter [produced] with other articles in a pocket of the coat on the body, and subsequently the witness CANDLISH pointed out the grave referred to, the two bottles and glass now produced were found there. The grave was about 8yds from where the body was found.

The bottles and glass referred to by the witness were of small size. The one which had held the carbolic acid could contain eight teaspoonful of liquid, and the other bottle, which the doctor stated had held chloral, was of a smaller size still. The glass, which smelt strongly of the acid, was of a peculiar shape, and narrow at the top and bottom, bulging out in the centre.

The Coroner, in summing up said it was not necessary for the jury to state in what mind the deceased was in at the time of, or immediately previously to, committing suicide, as a law which had been in force for some years, left it to the option of the clergyman to bury the body with funeral rites or not.

The jury, without any hesitation returned a verdict of, "Death by suicide."


Liverpool Mercury June 1st 1885

Attempted suicide

A married middle aged woman named Caroline BROWN, of 4 Caradoc Square, Latimer St, attempted to commit suicide on Friday evening by cutting her throat with a knife. She lies in a very precarious condition in the Stanley Hospital

Discovery at Crosby

On Saturday the body of William RITCHIE, late engineer of the screw tug Liberator, was washed on shore at Crosby. The deceased had been missing since the 28th January last. He was seen on that day going down to his ship, but how he got into the water is unknown. The body was identified by Mrs Mary RITCHIE, the widow of the deceased, who lives at Weston Point near Runcorn.

Sudden death of a Liverpool gentleman

The somewhat sudden death is announced of Mr James KENYON, a well-known and much respected cotton salesman of this city. Some time ago failing health induced Mr KENYON to take a Mediterranean trip, from whence he returned a few weeks since, evidently very little improved in physical condition. He was at business on Friday, but during the night he burst a blood vessel and death shortly ensued. Deceased was a prominent member of the old Anfield Cricket Club.

Death of an old Birkenhead tradesman

The death of Mr Edward LEGGE, the well-known proprietor of the Lionel Works, Haymarket, Birkenhead, has caused great regret amongst a large number of the inhabitants of that borough, by whom he was much esteemed. In early life Mr LEGGE came to Birkenhead, and for a considerable time was manager for the late Mr Stanton BAILIFF, painter and plumber. He afterwards commenced business on his own account as painter, decorator and contractor, and for many years carried on an extensive and successful trade, assisted latterly by his eldest son as partner. For 20yrs he represented the township of Tranmere at the Birkenhead Board of Guardians, and for 10yrs presided over the board as chairman, devoting much time and attention to the discharge of his public duties. He possessed a thorough knowledge of the poor law and other matters, connected with the carrying out of the poor-law system. To the numerous applicants for parish relief who came before him he was always kind and humane, and a harsh word to any of them never crossed his lips. Three years ago owing to failing health he retired from the position as chairman, and his brother guardians then presented him with a valuable testimonial in token of the regard in which they held him. Many years ago Mr LEGGE was also a member of the old Tranmere Local Board. Upon the in incorporation of Birkenhead in 1877, he contested Clifton Ward, but was defeated, and he did not afterwards seek to enter the Town Council. He was Liberal, but was not active politician and took no part in the meetings and organisations in the borough. By his kind and gentlemanly manner, and his uprightness in business, he won the respect of his fellow townsmen, by whom his death at the somewhat early age of 53 is greatly deplored. For several months he had been in ill-health and he died at a late hour on Friday night at his residence Clifton Rd, Birkenhead. His funeral will take place tomorrow afternoon at Flaybrick-hill Cemetery


Liverpool Mercury, Aug 6th, 1885

An inquest was held at Golborne on Tuesday on William Henry TAYLOR, aged 5yrs who was run over and killed on Friday. The deceased was the son of Thomas TAYLOR of 40 Rice Lane, Walton, Liverpool and was on a visit to his grandfather, John PARKINSON, Edge Green, Golborne, jury returned a verdict of accidental death.

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