The Lord Mayor held Courts of Thames Conservancy at Stratford and Greenwich, yesterday. Several cases connected with obstructions, en- croachments, and nuisances on the Thames, were disposed of.
The ungainly front of the Treasury and Home Office, says the Globe, which has so long offended the public eye, is at length to be removed. The front is to be pulled down, and one substituted in every way uniform with the improvements carried out by Mr. Barry on the front of the Privy Council Chamber and Board of Trade. The new portion will be of the same height as the South-west corner, where the sittings of the Privy Coun- cil are held; "and when the building is thus completed, it will present one of the richest and most tasteful fronts of any building in the Metropolis." The whole of the alterations are expected to be completed by the sitting of Parliament.
The British Museum, which is ordinarily closed for the first week of September, was reopened to the public on Thursday; the additional two days of exclusion having been found requisite in order to complete various alterations in placing the contents of the Museum, consequent on the ex- tensive building enlargements.
Several gentlemen are endeavouring to establish a club, to be called "the Whittington Club," for "the operative portion of the middle classes '- clerks, shopmen, and the like. The institution is to combine the advantages of a literary institute, a clubhouse, and a place of amusement. A numerous and respectable meeting was held at the Southampton Coffeehouse in Chan- cery Lane, on Tuesday,—Mr. W. Eyckelbosch in the chair,—to form the club; and a committee of thirty-two gentlemen was appointed to promote the enterprise.
Captain Richardson, the Chairman of the Tenbnry, Worcester, and Ludlow Railway Company, was brought up at the Mansionhouse on Wednesday, for re- examination on the charge of forgery which had been preferred against him. Mr. i
Clarkson and Mr. Wolfe appeared n his behalf. 31r. Skinner, a clerk in the Wexford, Waterford, and NI icklow Railway Company, of which the accused is a director, stated, that one day in August last he received a note for 1,000/. from Captain Richardson, with a request to take it to the Bank of England and get five hundred sovereigns and 5001. in notes in exchange for it. Witness went to the Bank of England and got it so exchanged; and afterwards delivered the gold and notes to Captain Richardson, at the board-room, 3, Royal Exchange Build- ings. A Bank of England clerk corroborated this. A number of witnesses de- posed to the manner in which the prisoner had changed portions of the gold that he received from the Bank for notes. He obtained notes from the London and
County Bank for 800/ From the Bank of England he got notes for a similar amount; the porter who went for them giving Captain Richardson's name and address. Two other sums of 2001. each were also thus changed. Mr. Willis, clerk in the banking-house of Smith, Payne, and Smiths, stated that a letter had been re- ceived by the house from Captain Richardson, dated "Dublin, July 30," enclosing three bank post-bills for 1001. each, and requesting that the 3001. might be placed to - his account. Mr. Samuel Fry, one of the solicitors to the Tenbury, Worcester, and Ludlow Railway Company, was next called; but Mr. Clarkson objected to his exa- mination, on the ground that as he filled the situation of solicitor to the company, it would be a violation of the first principles ofjustice to ask him to reveal what had come to his knowledge in a professional capacity; after some discussion, Mr. Pry was withdrawn. Mr. Thomas Stevenson, one of the directors of the railway com- pany, who had come from Scotland to attend the examination, spoke to the days when he attended meetings of the directors. He was present on the 7th July. He had no recollection of signing any checks at that meeting, or at any of the subsequent meetings. He remembered receiving a letter from Mr. Pulsford, about June or July, enclosing three checks for his signature,—one for 1001, one for 201, and one for 101. He signed those three checks, and returned them to Mr. Pubiford. The witness was shown the check for 5,0001, upon which the charge of forgery is raised, and was asked if the name, "Thomas Stevenson," was in his handwriting He believed it was. He gave the same answer respecting the cheeks for 1001. and 201. He never recollected signing any checks upon the house of Coutts and Co. which were not filled up. There were signatures to all the three checks sent him by Mr. Pulsford before he signed them—at least one or more. He never signed a check upon Coutts and Co. for 5,0001 Mr. Clarkson, after stating that he had seen blank checks signed by Mr. Stevenson, repeatedly asked the witness if he had ever signed any blank checks? Mr. Stevenson steadily denied having done so on any occasion.
Mr. Clarkson addressed the Magistrates for the prisoner. He contended that there was not the slightest evidence, except some admissions of the accused, that any alteration had been made in the check: there might have been a fraud, the signatures of Mr. Stevenson and Mr. Whitmore having been obtained to a blank check with a dishonest intention; but that did not constitute forgery. They should hold the prisoner to bail for fraud. Mr. Bush replied. Mr. Clarkson, he remarked, had truly stated that the evi- dence against the accused turned on his own declaration. It was the prisoner's own fault that he now stood charged with forgery; because when the affair was first discovered he had himself declared that a forgery most have been committed; and this, too, long before any charge against him was thought of, and when he had ample opportunity of examining the check in question. He contended, there- fore, that the whole of the evidence should be taken together; and that the pri- soner's statement that the 10/. check must have been altered to 5,000/. was clearly admissible against himself. He asked for a remand, that more evidence might be obtained.
Mr. Fry was then examined as to the efforts which had been made to secure the attendance of Mr. Whitmore. He stated that he had done everything he could in order to find out where Mr. Whitmore was; but all that he had been able to discover was, that he was somewhere on the Continent. Mr. Bush said he did not wish to cast any imputation on Mr. Whitmore, but he must say publicly, that if the reports that had appeared in the newspapers would not produce him, any powers which might be possessed by him or by the Court would fail to have that effect.
Ultimately, the prisoner was remanded till next Friday.
At the Thames Police-office, on Saturday, John Hillard was brought up for final examination on a charge of wilful murder, he having sold berries of the deadly nightshade to various persons, and a man and child having died from eating them. Evidence was produced to show that the accused was cognizant of the poisonous nature of the fruit. Mr. Hiscox, who described himself as a druggist and medical botanist, said he had known the prisoner for five or six years, or more, as a herb- gatherer, and considered him one of the most astute herb-collectors iu England: he was most =urge in collecting medical herbs. He could not be ignorant that the berries were poisonous. On the Magistrate's asking Hillard if he would put any question to the witness, the prisoner said he was quite ignorant of the berry altogether. He understood roots and plants, and knew what was good and what was-bad; but he really knew nothing about berries. He never picked berries for any herb-shop in his life. He ate as many as twelve of the berries on the day he sold a pint of them to Mr. Parker. They were as sweet as sugar, and as nice as honey. Mr. Ballantine—" Was that after the young man in Whitechapel told you they wee poisonous berries?" The prisoner—" No young man told me any- thing of the kind." Joseph Lester, assistant to Mr. Hiscox, corroborated his em- ployer's evidence. He saw the prisoner on the 15th of August, when he called at his master's shop with two baskets; one contained berries, the other herbs. Ile asked the prisoner what berries he had in his basket; and he replied nettleberries. The witness said, "Do you call these nettleberries ?" and the man replied, "They are hockleberries." Mr. Hiscox here stated that the fruit of the whortleberry or bilberry was very different in appearance from the deadly nightshade berry, which was much larger. A young woman deposed to buying some of the berries from the accused: he said they were hocklebenies, and recommended them for tarts and pies. The prisoner was committed for trial, for the wilful murder of Thomas Parker and Samuel Jones.
At Southwark Police-office, on Monday, two young men were charged with at- tempting to rob two letter-carriers. When passing along High Street, in the Borough, between two and three o'clock in the morning, the complainants were attacked by the prisoners and two other men, at the corner of Falcon Court. They were knocked down, kicked, and beaten while on the ground; and the watch of one was dragged from his fob, and would have been taken had it not been held by a strong guard-chain. On the alarm being given that the "crushers" (policemen) were coming, the prisoners ran away, but were subsequently taken into custody. The Magistrate committed the two robbers for ti.W; remarking, that many daring street-robberies had recently occurred on the South side of the Metropolis.
At the Worship Street Police-office, on Saturday, a man named Gardner called the Magistrate's attention to a very revolting and wholesale outrage on the dead. About half-past six o'clock that morning, as he was passing a waste piece of ground situated over the Kingsland Road Bridge, by the side of the Regent's Canal, where rubbish was thrown, his attention was drawn to the spot by seeing a num her of persons, who were raking over a large heap of rubbish that had Just been shot. He went up to them, and was horror-stricken to find that the heap con- sisted of nearly six cart-loads of pieces of coffins and human bones, some of which had the flesh still adhering to them. There was also a person's head with the hair on it, the face so little decomposed that it might be identified. The coffins had very few of them been under ground, and some were almost new. The -crowd, which consisted of the poor cottagers of the neighbourhood and their children, were busy in despoiling the coffins of the metal plates and handles, to sell them to the marine-store dealers; the wood they were taking home for their fires. On making inquiry, he found that the staff had been brought there but a short time before in some carts belonging to Mr. Gould, the dust-contractor of Shoreditch. The effluvium was dreadful. Mr. Broughton directed two consta- bles to proceed to the spot and inquire. Later in the day the officers made a report, corroborating Gardner's statement in many particulars. They had found men busy burying the remains. One Po- liceman picked up a skull, the jaw of which had been tied up with a handker- chief; this had been kicked about. He then went round to the marine-store shops in the neighbourhood, and discovered that above twenty sounds of metal plates and handles had been disposed of. He also found a quantity of coffin- wood that had been removed to the houses of the poor people about the place, and broken up for fires. From appearances he should have thought that the coffins and bodies had also been broken up with pickaxes or spades. Little informatien could be obtained from the proprietor of the ground or his labourers. A boy had stated, however, that the stuff had been brought there that morning; and that he had broken up some of the coffins, many of which were nearly whole. Ile re- fused to appear before the Magistrate without his master's sanction, which was denied. lik. Broughton issued a summons to compel the lad to appear on Monday. The Magistrate was very busy with other matters on that day, and the investi- gation was not entered upon, though some communications were made by the Police. Mr. King, the owner of the ground, sent a note to the Magistrate, saying that he had allowed rubbish to be shot for the purpose of making a road, and he regretted that some pieces of decayed coffins had been mixed with the stuff. Mr. Broughton directed that Mr. King and Mr. Gould should be summoned. Yesterday, two carters in the service of Mr. Gould, the dust-contractor, were held to bail to answer for the nuisance at the Sessions.
It is said that the coffins and remains of mortality were brought from a vault in St. Matthew's Church, Friday Street. The date on one of the coffin-plates was 1834; on another, 1838.
Mr. Bramwell, the arbitrator, has at length made his award in the case of the Spa Fields Burial-ground. He prohibits any further burials or disturbance of the ground, save in certain parts of the churchyard, for ten years; directs that no coffin of five feet or upwards shall be buried in any grave not deep enough to lie over the upper part of such coffin a thickness of soil of five feet-, coffins to be buried one or more deep in a vertical direction. When a coffin has been buried one year, they shall not bury over or disturb it. There shall be a horizontal or lateral direction one foot at least between coffins buried in the ground. No coffin to be removed or disturbed, nor any body or part of any body, for ten years from the time of burial. This award is dated the 9th of May last.— Globe.
At the Middlesex Sessions, on Thursday, Policeman Broadbridge, of the G division, was tried for assaulting Mrs. Leah Welsh. The conduct of the constable was very goon. Mrs. Welsh is the wife of a tradesman in Lower Whitecrees Street, and was at the time far advanced in pregnancy. She deposed that she went out at night to get some beer, accompanied by another married woman; on her way, the defendant called out to her to "move on," addressing her as a "com- mon woman." He afterwards treated her with much violence, tearing her i clothes, and thrusting his nails to her flesh. He took her to the station-house, and charged her with having created a disturbance at the private door of Whitbread's brewery. The constable of the night, however, ordered her to be discharged; and she went home. On her arrival there she was taken very ill, and vomited blood. A gentleman from Winchester, who witnessed the assault, confirmed parts of this statement. The man was found guilty, and sentenced to one month's imprisonmont in the House of Correction.
John Smith, condemned to death for the murder of Susan Tolliday, at the Guildhall Coffeehouse, has been respited by the Crown, during pleasure.
Some time since, nineteen brass howitzers were missed from Woolwich Arsedal; two privates of the Sappers and Miners employed in the establishment were sus- pected of having stolen them, and were apprehended; the evidence, however, did not warrant committal, and they were liberated. The Board of Ordnance then offered a reward of 1001. for the discovery of the thieves. It now turns out that the guns were not stolen at all; "they had been cast into a portion of the Nelson Monument, and through an error they were omitted to be entered in the official returns"! The two soldiers, who were discharged after a service of twenty-one years, have been restored to their appointments.
An inquest has been held this week on the body of Mary Ann Jones, a girl of nineteen, lately an inmate of St. Pancras Workhouse, who drowned herself, it was alleged, from dread of cruel punishment and treatment in the workhouse. The evidence established that the discipline of the establishment was very severe; that the food was insufficient; that a' black hole" exists where inmates are confined and fed on bread and water; and that a place called a "shed," where refractory paupers are placed to work, is unhealthy. After two horns' deliberation, the Jury returned this verdict—" We find that the deceased, Mary Anne Jones, drowned herself rather than return to the workhouse, she being driven to distraction by the thought of the treatment to which she would be subjected in the ' shed '; and we cannot separate without expressing our unanimous opinion that the discipline therein is unnecessarily severe."
A shepherd of Roehampton has died in St. George's Hospital from wounds in- flicted by a bull which he was attempting to drive from a field; the animal having made several thrusts at him, and then tossed him into the air.
There was a very low tide on Sunday; and as the Venezuela, a large steamer, was proceeding down the river, for Havre, heavily laden, she grounded on the Thames Tunnel. It remained in this position for two hours; but no apparent in- jury has been done to the tunnel.