Monday, 10 August 2009

The Inquest of 15th November 1894...

The day my great grandfather was sent to his imprisonment and the media outcry at the time means I can trace back to this. I'm reading local newspaper articles and records which shows a wonderfully rogue character beset with a complexity that is akin to the generations of males that has since followed on my Dad's side. He spoke and wrote in an educated manner, worked overly hard to provide for his family and wasn't exactly shy. It seemed he questioned authority on many occasions particularly that of the local Police. Especially, a Sergeant Clarkson whom acts strangely in court basically dismissing that my grandfather's wife was a heavy drinker much like him and even pretends he cannot remember arresting her at one point. This was either through his disdain for my grandfather's supposed criminality or perhaps wished to lock him away for once and for all so he could now rule the streets without a dangerously rebellious foe.

Whilst he was terribly violent or as the locals put it 'acted very quarrelsome' even the barman was ordered not to serve him yet his drinking didn't damage the popular view that he was caring, considerate enough to support his family. In fact it was paying for their teas which lead to the row and such a defining moment for our family and town.

Much like my father and I, we do not like to be kept waiting for our teas and women tend to drive us crazy with their relentless witherings and expressiveness of emotion. Although we don't particularly become maddened as such, it's worth remembering my grandad was a hard case with a long record for assaulting anyone unfortunate to get in his path from the publican I presume.

Alas he declared his innocence in court, 'firmly said' and 'in a clear calm voice' but the sheer witness evidence virtually crippled his bid to be released. Then he was sentenced for 14 years in prison on a manslaughter charge.

The whole story that unfolded was one of simplistic brilliance allowing a peek into my great great grandfather's persona, his immediate family and the traditional seaside town nearby to my village in which many of my family still reside today. The language used and the behaviour isn't too unfamiliar (drunken foolishness, fights and women causing trouble) with today's Britain and still, the sensationalist culture of the press still lives on.

Ironically, the family lived on the same street as my mother once did when brought up by her mother. In fact, one of the doctors in the case was of same martial name as my mother. Small world, isn't?


Cloud of Despair said...

Very small, indeed.

Sandy said...

Oh. What a climax. Small world indeed.

Demented Demon. said...

He contravened every rule and killed his own wife but I care not. Evocative I say, leading to his impending death on the frontline of the First World War after his release from prison.

Perhaps the doctor was my mother's grandfather on her father's side that lived in the area.

Natural Blues said...

God knows what will happen to me if I don't cook the tea. haha.