Friday 18 February 2022

The death of Richard Rainforth - Sheffield February 1885

This report appeared in the London Times dated 23rd February 1885 and refers to the death of a druggist Richard Rainforth. I should explain that when the coroner referred to "a clear case of hydrophobia" he was stating that the victim died of rabies. In other words he was bitten by a rabid collie dog

 What I found remarkable is that Mr Rainforth was sanguine about his imminent demise. He recognised at once that he was suffering from rabies and just accepted his fate. And he correct in doing so. It was later that year that Louis Pasteur and Emile Roux developed and administered the first rabies vaccine. For Richard it was just too late

He is buried in Sheffield's Norton Cemetery

RAINFORTH, Richard (~, age 43). Died at Bramall Lane, Sheffield; Buried on February 21, 1885 in Consecrated ground;  Grave Number 10, Section I1 of Norton Cemetery, Sheffield.Remarks: Removed from Sheffield parish.  Plot Owner: ~ ~ of ~. Page No 46

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