Reading Room

Old news detailing sports, crime, violence and suffering in Victorian Wigan. All stories taken from The Wigan Observer And District Advertiser, 1890. Material kindly loaned by Ron Hunt.

Friday, December 5, 1890.

THE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT.
   James Tocker, Union-street, was charged with stealing 10s. from the person of John Coyle, of Preston, the previous night. - The Chief-constable (Captain Bell) prosecuted. - John Coyle, a hawker, residing in lodgings at Union-street, Preston, said on Wednesday night, at ten o'clock, he took lodgings with John Colne, Union-street, Wigan. He went to bed, but he afterwards got up to make room for other men, and went across the street to another house, where he was told there were plenty of beds. As soon as he got into the house prisoner knocked him down and rifled his watch pocket, stealing 10s. Complainant then gave information to the police. - Police-constable Lyon said he apprehended the prisoner at a quarter-past one that morning. He charged him with stealing the money, to which he replied, "Aye, aye. All right." Prisoner was searched, but no money was found upon him. - Evidence was brought by the prisoner to prove that the complainant merely came into the house and went out again, returning with the policeman. - Mr. Roocroft said it seemed there was a doubt in the case, and prisoner would have the benefit of it. - He was discharged.


Friday, December 5, 1890.

NO CREDIT TO THE ARMY.
   Two young men named John White and Edward Hamell were apprehended on Tuesday night by Police-constable Meakin on a charge of desertion from the 4th Battalion Manchester Regiment, at present in training at Ashton-under-Lyne. - The two prisoners enlisted on the 8th of November, and deserted thirteen days afterwards. They admitted that they had left the regiment, and said their uniforms were sold. - An order was made for their removal to Ashton-under-Lyne.


Friday, December 5, 1890.

SHOCKING RAILWAY FATALITY
AT HINDLEY.

   On Wednesday morning, about a quarter to eight, whilst going his round of inspection, Wm. Vose, foreman platelayer, discovered, near to Crow Nest Junction, on the Hindley and Pendleton section of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway, the dead body of a person who apparently had met with a fearful death. The head was badly smashed, the right arm broken in a few places, several ribs were broken, and the left leg was severely lacerated. Attached to the clothing was a collier's brass check or tally bearing the number 55, and as this was the only means of identification, the police made very searching inquiries, but for a length of time their diligence proved futile. It was late in the day when it was found that the corpse was that of James Favier, 18 years of age, who resided with his parents at No. 73, Chapel Green, Hindley. The deceased was a collier, and worked at No. 2 Hewlett Pit, Westhoughton, belonging to the Wigan Coal and Iron Company, and followed his usual employment on Tuesday. He left the pit and proceeded towards his home along the highway leading from Westhoughton to Hindley, about a quarter to five on Tuesday, accompanied by his mate, Robert Wheatman, the latter leaving him at a point which is known as the "Old Hollow" to go through the fields to his residence in Martin-street. Nothing more was seen of Favier until his mangled body was found by the foreman platelayer. It is conjectured that he was killed the same evening by one of the express trains which run from Manchester to Liverpool, but it remains a mystery how he came to be on the railway at this spot, as it was entirely out of his course. The body was removed to the Leigh Arms Hotel, Ladies'-lane, Hindley, to await the coroner's inquest.


Saturday, December 6, 1890.

A GOLBORNE BIGAMIST AND THE
SUPPORT OF HIS FAMILY.

   On Saturday, at the Newton-le-Willows Petty Sessions, James Albert Mason, of Golborne, who was formerly a Scripture reader, but who has been undergoing a term of three months' imprisonment for bigamy, committed under circumstances previously reported, was charged on remand with having deserted his wife and three children, who had become chargeable to the Leigh Union. - The relieving officer, who had the case in hand, told the magistrates that prisoner's wife applied for relief to the guardians in January of the present year, and was allowed out-relief. Since his release from prison defendant had been paying 12s. weekly, and the charge would be withdrawn if defendant would promise to regularly contribute towards the maintenance of his wife and family. - Defendant gave the required promise, and the case was accordingly withdrawn.


Saturday, December 6, 1890.

THEFT OF PROVISIONS AT ASPULL.
   William Parker, of Aspull, was charged at the Bolton Police Court last week with stealing a tin of corned beef from a waggon belonging to Messrs. O. and G. Rushton, grocers, Wigan. One of their assistants was delivering groceries in Withington-lane, Aspull, on the evening of the 21st November, when he saw a hand put under the sheet and a tin of corned beef taken off the waggon. He jumped off and saw Parker, who is only a boy, running away with the tin. He caught him, got his name, and the matter was reported to the police. - The boy said that another big boy told him if he did not take the tin he would "punch" him. - The bench, after cautioning the lad's mother as to the manner he was being brought up, discharged him.


Saturday, December 6, 1890.

COLLIERY ACCIDENT.
   On Thursday afternoon last, a young man named John Eatock, whilst following his employment in the 6ft. Mine of the Orrell Coal and Cannel Company, sustained serious injuries, being run over by a full tub of coal. He was conveyed to his home at Poolstock on the ambulance, when it was found that the man had been very severely injured about the head and face, his removal to the infirmary being deemed necessary. Little hopes are entertained of his recovery.


Wednesday, December 10, 1890.

THE DANGER OF PROP-DRAWING.
   Mr. Brighouse, county coroner, held an adjourned inquest on Monday afternoon, at the Bryn Hall Hotel, Ashton, on the body of Thomas Cresswell, thirty-one years of age, of Platt Bridge, Hindley. Mr. J. H. Hedley, Government inspector of mines, was present. The deceased was a dataller emplyed at No. 6 Pit Bryn Hall Colliery, and on the 30th October he and a man named Molyneux were engaged in drawing timber in a disused working place. They had loosened the foot of the first prop, and were about to draw it with a gablock and chain, when a large fall of roof occurred, completely burying the deceased and injuring Molyneux. Cresswell was found to be quite dead when recovered soon after. - The jury returned a verdict of "Accidental death," but suggested that in future prop-drawing should be carried out when the colliers were not at work in the mine.


Wednesday, December 10, 1890.

A WIGAN PRINTER SUMMONED.
   James Jackson, printer and publisher, Millgate, was summoned for employing two boys without obtaining the necessary medical certificate of fitness according to the regulations of the Workshops and Factories Act, 1887. - Mr. Brewer, Her Majesty's Inspector of Factories, said that on the 19th ult. he visited defendant's premises and on looking over the register he found that two boys, who were employed there, had not been passed by the doctor. - Mr. James Wilson, who appeared on behalf of Mr. Jackson, said that the defendant had sent once or twice for the doctor to come and examine the lads, but he had not attended when Mr. Brewer visited the premises. - The defendant was ordered to pay costs in each case.


Wednesday, December 10, 1890.

CRUELTY TO A HORSE.
   William Sephton, of Bow-street, Liverpool, and William Henry Sephton, of Thatto Heath, were charged, the former for working and the latter for causing to be worked, a horse which was in an unfit condition. - Inspector Brown (of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) said he saw the defendant, William Sephton, in charge of a horse attached to a cart laden with 30cwt. of furniture and lead piping in Mesnes-street, Wigan. The horse was very lame on both fore-feet. It was taken out of the cart and put up at the Market Hotel. The horse had come from Bamber Bridge and was going to Thatto Heath. - Mr. Sayers, veterinary surgeon, deposed that the animal was suffering from chronic lamingitis, and was unfit for work. - Defendants were fined 2s. 6d. and costs.

Top of page