News from Essex – Essex news items 1720 – 1900
Lots of gems from Essex local rags and occasionally what other parts of the country said in their reports of Essex. From smuggling in the Dagenham marshes to riots in Colchester and Witham. Former Essex celebrities include a zoo owner, an executioner, a wayward vicar’s wife and, of course, a highwayman or two.
The Faithless Wife and Unfortunate Gallant - One night last week, a labouring man went to his lodgings in George Yard, Saffron [Walden] Hill, when he found the room door locked, and there being a light in the room, he saw through the keyhole a man’s clothes lying on the ground, when he swore if his wife did not open the door he would force it, and would kill any man he should find. He then went downstairs to get an implement to effect his purpose, and during his absence, the gallant jumped from the window (two stories), broke his leg, and otherwise so injured himself as to be taken to St. Bartholemew’s Hospital without hopes of recovery.
Edward Clarke one of the unfortunate men upon whom the punishment of death was inflicted at Chelmsford for their violation of the laws, yesterday se’nnight, left a request in writing, drawn up on the morning of his execution, in the following terms - “I, Edward Clarke, now in a few hours expecting to die, do sincerely wish as my last request, that three of my fingers be taken from my hands, to be given to my three children as a warning to them, as my fingers were the cause of bringing myself to the gallows and my children to poverty.” - Two persons were then named whom he exhorted to see this extraordinary injunction carried into effect, and it was strictly complied with.
Written and compiled by Pip Wright
226 pages, 145 pictures in colour and black & white.
Published by Pawprint Publishing ISBN 978-0-9564855-5-7 Price: £9.95
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