Wednesday 22 February 2017

Child Overlaid by a Drunken Mother - Canal Street, Sheffield December 1900

A reader of the site and blog has sent me a newspaper cutting of an inquest that was held into the death of an eight week old baby Mary Ann Cater on 11th December 1900.

December 12th 1900
Child Overlaid by a Drunken Mother

The City Coroner, Mr. D. Wightman, held an inquest, yesterday, at the North Pole Inn, Sussex Street, concerning the death of Mary Ann Cater, the eight weeks old child of Mary and John Cater, of Canal Street.
The child was put to bed about a quarter-past ten on Saturday night. It slept with its mother and father. The
mother gave the child the breast about four o’clock on Sunday morning, and she went to sleep with the child
still sucking. When she awoke again, about quarter-past seven, the child was dead.

Dr. Arthur Hallam had made a post- mortem examination on the body, and had come to the conclusion that the child had died from suffocation. The woman had lost seven children previous to this. It was stated by several persons present, who were not, however, called as witnesses, that the woman was drunk on Saturday evening when she went to bed with the child, and though the woman denied this, the Coroner said no value was to be attached to her statement.

Inspector Stephens, who was present on behalf of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, said the mother bore a very bad character for drunkenness and neglect of her children.

The jury returned a verdict that “deceased died from suffocation, but as to the cause there was not sufficient
evidence to show”.

I have dome some research on the Cater family, and it really is at times a tragic tale. I intend to post an article to the site at sometime in the future but at the moment I am trying to find a contemporary photo/illustration of Canal Street, Sheffield circa 1900. The house they lived in was a "court house" or back to back with just two rooms.which was in all likelihood a dingy, squalid hovel.

The site of the house is now occupied by a warehouse/industrial unit

A Painting by Robert Hudson (1852 - 1854)

I posted a blog on 8th February 2017 that contained the obituary of the Sheffield artist Robert Hudson.and two of his works

A reader of the blog has contacted me and asked if I know the location of a painting by Robert that he has in his possession. It is very similar in style to "The Brook in Endcliffe Park" that is held by City Museums and my guess is that the cottage is in that vicinity. But it is only a guess. If anyone can furnish me with a more specific location, I will pass it on the painting's owner

Wednesday 8 February 2017

A Public Mortuary For Sheffield -7th April 1884

This is from the Sheffield Weekly Telegraph dated Saturday 12th April 1884 and refers to the opening of the new public mortuary on Monday 7th April 1884 in Plum Lane Sheffield. As you can see below the cutting is the subject of my previous blog Mr Robert Hudson

It is classic Victorian Gothic and in some places it takes some believing that this is how the dead (and the living) were treated in late Victorian Sheffield. 

To date I have not be able to locate a photo of this mortuary on Plum Lane

Robert Hudson - A Sheffield Artist (1852 - 1884)

This is from the Sheffield Weekly Telegraph dated 12th April 1884. I knew nothing about Robert or his work until I found this rather sad obituary.

It appears that he was a talented artist and his work has been acquired by a number of museums. Here are two of his paintings - the first is the brook in Endcliffe Park Sheffield and the second is the church at Edwinstowe, Nottinghamshire. 

Wednesday 1 February 2017

The Actions of a Bum-Balliff and the Death of Hugh Saville - Broad Lane, Sheffield 1890

I have just posted an article to the site regarding the death of a 44 year old labourer Hugh Saville at 125 Broad Lane, Sheffield on November 23rd 1890

 The sub-title is "A remarkable case of self-destruction and a wretched story of misery and want". And indeed it was. It received coverage in the local and regional press and the inquest was reported in detail. This cutting is from the Nottingham Evening Post dated 27th November 1890

A few points emerged out of it, one of which was the lack of information about the Sheffield Public Mortuary on Plum Lane. It was approximately adjacent to the Museum pub on Leopold Street and was part of the Sheffield Medical School. This is where this inquest and many others were held in the late nineteenth century but there seems to be very little research about the institution.