Mr. W. J. Fox, the late Member for Oldham, and Mr. Heald, the late Member for Stockport, have come forward to fill the vacancy made by the death of Mr. Duncuft.
In his speech at Alnwlck on the day of nomination for North Northum- berland, Lord Lovaine hazarded the following specific accusation, re- torting upon Sir George Grey, who had made some general remarks on the coercion employed against him- " Now I put it tO you on which side coercion has been exercised, when I state, that the honourable Baronet canvassed the Western district of the county accompanied by a paid Commissioner of the Government; and, in consequence, I have been refused the votes of the Greenwich Hospital's es- tate tenants, though they openly stated that they wished to vote for me."
Two days after this was uttered, Mr. John Grey, the agent of the Hos- pital estates, wrote to Lord Lovaine, quoting the words, utterly denying the accusation, and asking his Lordship to retract the expressions. Lord Lovaine replied, that the words did not apply to Mr. Grey. The latter gentleman has published the correspondence in the Times; adding, that in the " Western district" there are only two tenants of the Hospital estate having votes,, and that one of these left the district in May last ; while of five tenants at Spindleaton, " one voted for Sir George Grey, one was absent, and the remaining three voted for the coalition Lords."
The investigation into the Stockport riots closed on Monday, with the committal of twenty prisoners—ten English and ten Irish. It is remark- able that the Home Secretary declines to prosecute on the part of Govern- ment, and leaves the matter in the hand of Mr. Frith, the priest whose house was ransacked, and Mr. Foster.
" As the ease is a very peculiar one," Mr. Walpole directs his Under= Secretary to inform Mr. Gibson, solicitor for the prosecution, that " the Government will take, upon itself any reasonable expenses properly incurred by Mr. Frith and Mr. Foster over and above the costs of prosecution allowed by the county." A "grand ball" was to talc- e place on Saturday, in aid of a fund to de- fray the expense of defending the English prisoners.
The annual show meeting of the Yorkshire Agricultural Society was held at Sheffield on Wednesday. The stock exhibited was very superior in point of breed; the attendance at the show was unusually large, and its success complete. The Earl of Effingham presided over the dinner of the Council.
The Epsom Magistrates have held to bail Horatio Henry Milling and Thomas Chitty, to take their trial at the Assizes, Milling for personating his dead brother at the recent West Surrey election, and Chitty for aiding and abetting him. Milling went to Epsom to vote for Colonel Challoner ; a solicitor for the other candidates objected that he was not a voter—that he was not John Milling : the man replied, that his name was Horatio Joha. Milling, and voted on the qualification of "John" Milling, the solicitor taking care that a note was made of the matter by the officials. The Judge at Assize has postponed the trial on the application of the prosecutors, as cer- tain necessary documents can only be obtained by order of the House of Commons : but the accused have been liberated, on their own recognizance=.
One Roberts has been defrauding people at Sunderland of passage-money to Australia, on pretence that he had purchased a new vessel for the voyage. When he had obtained a good deal of money, out of which he paid 1181. to the shipowners, he decamped.
A case of matricide has occurred at Birkenhead, under peculiarly painful circumstances. Elizabeth Thomas was a widow ; and she lived at the vil- lage of Prenton, on the Cheshire shore of the Mersey, with her three sons, William, Joseph, and Samuel. William was twenty-three years old, Joseph twenty, and Samuel nine. They all lived happily ; the mother " going out charing and to wash " ; and the elder sons working as labourers. For the last twelvemonth William had been getting " foolish." About eight weeks ago, Mrs. Thomas called in Mr. Byerley, a surgeon, to attend William, who complained of headache and drowsiness. Mr. Byerley bled him and gave him medicine, and in about a fortnight he " got well.' Three weeks after, he again grew ill ; making absurd remarks," and behaving very oddly ; but to the surgeon he always appeared quite rational. Blisters were ap- plied, and ho again improved. This lasted, however, only a short time ; for at the beginning of last week, his manner was sufficiently singular to be noticed by both his brothers and his mother. The symptoms had increased ; and on Friday morning last week Mr. Byerley again ordered him to be blistered on the back of the neck ; and his mother spoke to the surgeon about sending him to a lunatic asylum. But she did not live to do it ; for in the night of the next day William murdered her in her bed.
The story is told by the evidence taken at the inquiry made by the Magis- trates at Birkenhead, before whom William Thomas was taken.
William and Joseph went out on Saturday night, leaving behind their mother and Samuel. William returned first, and told his mother not to sit up, as he would wait for Joseph. Mrs. Thomas went to bed, where she slept with her youngest son. This part of the story was narrated by Samuel, cry- ing bitterly. After he had been some time asleep, he was awoke by his mo- ther " knocking against " him. He saw his brother kneeling on his mother with a candle in one hand and a razor in another." " William put the can- dle down, and laid hold of my mother's throat with one hand, and drew the razor across her throat." She wrestled a little, but "soon lay down quite still." " After he had cut my mother's throat, he hauled her down." Samuel was then carried to William's bed ; whence, looking out, he saw his mother's head on the top of the stairs being dragged down.
By and by, Joseph came home, and was frightened by seeing a light in the back-room window. " I walked into the house-place, [a cottage sitting-room is so called in Lancashire,] and William called out from the back-room, who was there ? said, me.' He then came down. When at the foot of the stairs, he said to me, 'Joe, I have killed my mother, and buried her in the garden, comfortable; and she will be a good deal better off'. I have made her comfortable. Don't you go and say anything.' I cried out, and i asked him where Sam was, and he said, ' He is up-stairs in bed.' " Joseph then carried Samuel to the house of a neighbour. [Just at this moment he was requested by one of the Magistrates to speak more audibly ; when the prisoner, at the to of his voice, and in a shrill tone, exclaimed, " Speak up as they can hear thee, Joe : nobody can hear thee speak, man."] Joseph called up the neighbours, and several came with him. " We searched the premises and the garden. The first thing that we saw was the bed and bol- sters lying on the ground. There was a good deal of blood upon them. We then saw a mound of new earth, and we commenced digging. About two feet under the soil we came to a hand sticking up. We then cleared away the earth, and found the body of my mother, Elizabeth Thomas. She had only her shift upon her. There was a blanket wrapped around her. It was very bloody. There was a rope tied round my mother's waist. The body was then taken out, and conveyed to the house. I became too much affected to observe more, and went into the house. William, all the time that we were searching for the body, was sitting in the house talking with a man from Prenton."
Both the brothers spoke as to the strange and excited manner of William during the past twelvemonth, and especially during the past week. Samuel said he was generally kind to his mother, and she to him. They never
quarrelled ; but he would sometimes sauce her. "A few days ago, I heard him sauce her." Joseph said, " I considered him wrong about the head for a twelvemonth back : his oddness showed itself in getting foolish, and during the last week he got more excited."
The Magistrates committed William, and the Coroner's Jury found a ver- dict of " Wilful murder" against him.
At Guildford, on Tuesday, Maria Chitty, the woman who killed one of her two little children with a wooden mallet, was put on her trial for murder. At the time of the act, the woman's husband was in a lunatic asylum ; and the evidence clearly showed that she herself was insane. The Jury accord- ingly acquitted her, as not being of sound mind when she killed her child.
Mr. Samuel George Daniel, a master silk-winder, of Bethnal Green, has been killed on the South-eastern Railway, from the use of most dangerous carriages on that line. Mr. Daniel was on his way, on the 24th July, to join his wife and family at Ramsgate. He was in a third-class carriage. As the train passed through Ashford station, he put his head out at the side ; it struck against an iron pillar, and the poor man fell back insensible into the carriage. As soon as a guard was made aware of the disaster, the train was stopped ; but a surgeon deemed it most advisable to carry the sufferer to the hospital at Canterbury. He died there that night, from an extensive fracture at the base of the skulL When the Coroner's Jury met, it was resolved to apply to the Railway department of the Board of Trade, that.an inspector might report on the cause of the fatality. Captain George Wynne accordingly inquired into the matter, and made a report to the Board of Trade. As this report was not evidence, Captain Wynne gave oral teatimorry before the Jury, to the same effect as his report. But as the latter contained a succinct account of the causes of the disaster, we extract from that.
" In order to understand how the accident occurred, it is necessary that I should first describe the arrangement of the station. The platforms at the Ashford station are placed on sidings of the up and down line: these sidings are roofed over, and the roof on the side of the siding next the main line is supported by iron pillars stand- ing on dwarf-walls, about two feet high. The distance from the inside of the mil to the pillar is 33.1 inches; the width of the carriage from which the accident happened is 8 feet 6 inches; the distance from the side of the carriage to the pillar was 91 inches by actual measurement. The carriage had a roof, but was open along the upper part of the side, with the exception of the stanchions supporting the roof ; the
height of the enclosed part above the floor was 3 feet 6 inches : the carriage was 8-wheeled, and calculated to accommodate 120 passengers.
The train of which the carriage formed a part, was the 3.30 p. m. from London to Canterbury: it stopped a short distance West of the Ashford station, to change the engine, and then proceeded down the main line, without stopping at the station. On passing the station, the only thing that was observed whilst the train was going by the station was, that in passing the columns a passenger's hat was knocked off; which was picked up, and found to have a spot of -blood in it. The guard, who was riding in a break-carriage next to a luggage-van behind the tender, had his attention attracted, when about two miles beyond Ashford, by the passengers in the third-class carriage waving their handkerciefs out of the windows. He immediately proceeded along the foot-boards of the carriages to this one. which was the third carriage from his, to ascertain what was the matter; and having discovered that a passenger had been hurt, he returned back to his own carriage, and signalled the driver to stop at the next station. The man was found insensible from the effects of the blow, and a medical gentleman who happened to be in the train recommended that the wounded man should be taken at once to the hospital at Canterbury; where, I understand, he died the same night. The 8outh-eastern Railway Company have a considerable number of carriages of all classes of the same width—viz. B feet 6 inches—as the one from which the ac- cident happened. The first and second class carriages have two bars across the windows to prevent passengers protruding tbeir heads any distance out of the win- dows ; why the same precautions were not adopted with the third-class carriages, I cannot understand. No time should be lost in putting bars to the windows of these carriages, sufficient in number to prevent the recurrence of such an accident. At the same time, I think it a matter for grave consideration whether the South-eastern Company have not passed the limits of safety in constructing carriages of this ex- treme width. Absolute danger to life may be avoided by the precaution which has been adopted by placing bars to the windows, so that passengers cannot pro- trude their heads; but serious damage to limbs may occur by the common act of a person merely putting out his band to ascertain the state of the weather ; and when it is considered that the distance to the pillars is but 9 inches, this is no extreme case ; and to this danger children are particularly liable. The repugnance to the public of having themselves confined by barred windows was very strongly mani- fested when it was first put in practice on the North Kent line; and as I believe this occurred before the introduction of these carriages on the main line, the expres- sion of the public opinion should have had some weight with the company, more especially when to the inconvenience is added a certain amount of danger to limbs." When Captain Wynne was examined, Mr. Church, a solicitor who appeared for the Railway Company, objected to an expression of Captain Wynne's, that the Company had "passed the limits of safety " in their new carriages, since it might bear the construction that it was unsafe for persons to be within the carriages; but the Coroner dissented, and Captain Wynne said the carriages were only unsafe as soon as a passenger put his head or arm out at the side. Mr. Church said, the Company were engaged in putting bars to .the new third-class carriages toprevent accident in future.
The Jury gave a verdict of "Accidental death" ; but adding, " We cannot separate without expressing our surprise and regret that so little care and attention is paid to the safety of persons travelling in the South-eastern Railway Company's third-class carriages."
At a quarter past nine on Wednesday a train started from Birmingham for London. Exactly at the same time a train started from Leamington for Birmingham. When the London train had reached the Berkswell cutting, the ash-pan falling from the engine, struck against the frame-work of the break-van, broke away the couplings, and threw it on to the down-line. At this moment the train from Leamington came up, dashed into the break- van, glanced off into the leading second-class carriage, and smashed it in pieces ; killing two persons on the spot, and inflicting hints on many others. The Earl of Dartmouth was in a coupe of the up-train, but escaped unhurt, although the door of his carriage was splintered. The sufferers were sent on to Coventry, and well attended. One of the killed was Mr. Beddington, optician, of Birmingham; the other was a young man, son of Mr. Floyd of Oxford.
An inquest was held at Coventry on Tuesday, before Mr. W. H. Seymour, one of the Coroners for the county, of Warwick. A great many of the supe- rior servants of the North-western Company were present, and they formed the principal witnesses. The tendency of their evidence was to show that the falling of the ash-pan had caused the accident. The engine-driver was of opinion that something hard had struck the pan : but nothing was found, neither did he feel the engine jerk at any point. And as the Company's servants, to whom the duty of inspecting the engines is delegated, were one and all of opinion that the engine was sound when she started, the matter remained in complete mystery. The Coroner seemed disposed to let it remain so; but a Mr. Alderman Whitten, who represented the friends of the two killed men, submitted that the Jury should inspect the en- gine. They did so ; to no purpose, apparently. Mr. Whitten then made a voluntary statement of his opinion, that the bolts fastening the ash-pan had worn away by time, and that it fell off. The Coroner did not appear to relish this pertinacity, and was sharp in his replies ; at one time suggesting that he was not "going to be bullied." Finally, it was agreed that a Mr. Mosedale, a machinist independent of the Company, should examine the engine. He reported, that " the thing was altogether in a bad state "; that the iron-work belonging to the pan was decayed" • that the " snap and nibs" were decayed ; and that he should think the ash-pan "had fallen off from the decayed parts of iron." But as the fire was in the engine, he could not closely examine it. He also complained that all the parts of the work were not there. The Jury concurred in the main part of his opinion ; and at length it was agreed that another inspection should take place when the engine was cool.
An express-train left Liverpool at 9.30 on Thursday. At Crewe, another engine, the Velocipede, was attached, to help the express "up the Made- ley bank" this having been accomplished, the engine was unhooked, and ran on before. Through Whitmore station both ran in safety ; but round the curve beyond Whitmore, the Velocipede was not visible to the express. After cautiously passing Whitmore, the speed was got up. On clearing the curve the Velocipede was seen about three hundred yards in front, appa- rently standing still ; really it was about to shunt at the points near Hat- ton Wharf. In a moment the express was down upon the helpless Veloci- pede, and the express-engine-driver was killed. An inquest was opened yes- terday, and adjourned to Wednesday week.
An accident of a most serious nature occurred on Sunday morning between the Poole station on the Leeds and Thirsk Railway and Ilkley. Two of the Railway's Company's omnibuses, conveying between seventy and eighty pas- sengers, were racing on the road, when one of the wheels of the first vehicle came off, and the coach behind, which was close up, galloped over the pas- sengers of its broken-down competitor as they lay on the road. The poor passengers were most awfully cut up—some with broken legs, some with broken thighs and arms. The accident is imputed to gross carelessness and reckless driving.
When the inquest on Mr. Sard, who was drowned by the sinking of the Duchess of Kent, was resumed at Gravesend on Wednesday, evidence of the cause of the running down was given by the crew of the two steamers. The people of the Ravensbourne said the collision was caused by the Duchess of Kent; her crew, on the contrary, declared that the vessel was properly managed, and that the Ravensbourne did not keep a correct course. A barge- man and a waterman however, cast the blame on the Duchess of Kent. The inquest was again adjourned.
A successful attempt was made, yesterday, to raise the Duchess of Kent from the bottom. She was towed, still under water, up nearer to Grays.
The object of the raising party is to get her gradually into shallow water
so that she can be made water-tight and taken to the repairing-dock. '