T Fordyce.

Local records; or, Historical register of remarkable events which have occurred in Northumberland and Durham, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and Berwick-upon-Tweed, with biographical notices of deceased persons of talent, eccentricity, and longevity; (Volume 2) online

. (page 1 of 48)
Online LibraryT FordyceLocal records; or, Historical register of remarkable events which have occurred in Northumberland and Durham, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and Berwick-upon-Tweed, with biographical notices of deceased persons of talent, eccentricity, and longevity; (Volume 2) → online text (page 1 of 48)
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3 1833 00668 4549

Digitized by the Internet Archive

in 2010 with funding from

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Printed and Published by T. Fordyce, 60, Dean Street.










\ 1867 (October 9).— Charles Smith, Esq. (the oldest merchant in
Newcastle), died at his residence, Saville Row, Newcastle-on-Tyne,
at the patriarchal age of 95 years and 7 months. Up to the last
his faculties were unclouded, and he quietly slumbered away, free
from pain or suffering. Air. Smith was a gentleman remarkably
well informed on almost every topic. His commercial and business
qualifications were of a very high order, and his knowledge and
advice were always at the service of those who required them.

October 1 3.— Died, at his residence, at Eenwell, near Newcastle-
on-Tyne, at the age of 83 years, Joseph Straker, Esq., formerly of
\ North Shields, an extensive shipowner and colliery proprietor. He
yas a considerable landowner, and his last purchase (only made a
few weeks before his death) was the Stagshaw Close House Estate,
near Corbridge. The deceased was retiring in his habits, and
seldom took any part in public affairs, except in connection with
objects of charity ; and he was a liberal contributor to all societies
having for their aim the amelioration of the condition of the poor,
by whom he was held in much esteem. His large commercial
operations were marked by the strictest honour and integrity, and
he had the respect and regard of all with whom he came in contact.
October 13.— Died, at Wentworth Place, Newcastle- on-Tync,
aged 55 years, the Rev. \V. Spencer. The deceased was a man of
great probity and singular disinterestedness of heart, and will al-
ways be held in most affectionate memory by the many young men
who have passed through his hands, who must feel that they not
only owe him much for the pains he took in their education, but
must look back with pleasure to the time they passed under his
hospitable roof, with their labours lightened by his benevolence
and kindness of disposition.



October 1 5. — The Right Worshipful the Mayor of Newcastle-on-
Tyne (William Hunter, Esq.) and Mrs. Mayoress gave a ball this
evening, on a scale of almost unprecedented magnificence, in the
Assembly Rooms of that town, the whole of the spacious apart-
ments being called into requisition for the occasion.

October 17. — The foundation stone of the Abbot Memorial
Ragged and Industrial Schools, Gateshead, was laid by Mrs. Abbot,
with a silver trowel, presented to her by the Mayor (George Miller,
Esq.) en behalf of the inhabitants of the borough. The usual cere-
mony having been gone through, Mrs. Abbot declared the stone
duly laid, amid loud cheers. Sir W. Hutt, M.P. for the borough,
then mounted the stone, and proposed a vote of thanks to Mrs.
Abbot for her gift. A public lanquet was held the same evening,
at the Queen's Head Inn, to commemorate the event. Dr. Cook,
by general acclamation, was voted to the chair ; Mr. James Davi-
son was appointed vice-chairman.

October 17.— The will of the late Sir Charles Monck, Bart., of
Belsay Castle, Northumberland, was proved in the District Registry
of Newcastle-on-Tyne. The personalty was sworn under £90,000.
He bequeathed to his grandson, Henry Nicholas Monck, £4,( 00,
in addition to his provision under the settlement of marriage of his
fathei and mother. To his butler he left ££00, and to his
housekeeper £60, for their lorg and faithful services, free of duty.
His real estate, and the residue of the personal, he bequeathed to
his grandson, now Sir Arthur Edward Monck, Bart. There are
certain real and landed estates situated at Bolam, Stamfordham,
and Whalton, all in Northumberland, the annual income from
which is to accumulate till it reaches the sum of £100,000 ; his
grandson, the present baronet, receiving therefrom, in the mean-
time, £2,000 per annum.

October 19. — A silver cradle was presented to the Mayoress of
Newcastle-on-Tyne. The members of the Town Council of Newcastle
subscribed individually for the purchase of a handsome silver
epergne, on which was engraved — " This epergne was presented by
the Town Council of Newcastle to Mrs. Hunter, wife of the Right
W< rshipfn] A \ illiam Hunter, Esq., Mayor of the Borough, on the
occasion of t he birth of a daughter during the mayoralty of her
husband." The Sheriff of Newcastle (Mr. Richard Caii) was
deputed to make the presentation.

October 29.— A lamentable and fatal accident occured to Colonel
Harrison, of* the Madras Royal Artillery. He had served in India,
Bui mab, and ( bina, and returned to England in March, 1866, and
lived with his family at Whitburn, in the county of Durham. The
deceased, in company with Sir Hedworth Williamson, Bart., Cap-
tain Williamson, and Mr. Fred. Hume Wilcox, solicitor, of Sun-
derland, wuit by invitation to shoot on the Edlingham Estate.
The party breakfasted together at the Moor House, were all on the
Lest terms, and started to thoot shortly afterwards. Shooting was


kept up till half-past twelve, when they had lunch in Birley Wood,
remaining about half-an-hour ; and, as the keepers were putting
the game, &c, into the cart, Sir Hedworth was explaining the
different action between his breech-loader and Mr. Wilcox's : his
being a central-pin, whilst the other was a pin-cartridge. After he
had dropped the cartridges into the breech, he closed it, and by the
action raised the barrels, when one of them instantaneously went
off. The deceased at that time was crossing in aline with the gun,
about three yards distant, and the charge struck him on the left leg
and he fell. The iuside of the leg below the knee was blown away.
At the coroner's inquest, the jury returned the following verdict : — ■
" Charles Henry Harrison, on the 29th October, 1867, accidentally
received injuries from the discharge of a breech-loader, which caused
his death, at Edlingham, on the same day." — Deceased was 42 years
of age.

October 30. — A destructive fire broke out on a farm at Elwick,
about two miles east of Belford, in the occupation of Mr. George
Chisholm, when seventy-one stacks of corn were burned, valued at
£2,500. The fire was evidently the work of an incendiary.

November 9. — The following gentlemen were elected mayors : —
Newcastle, Henry Angus, Esq., mayor; John Mawson, Esq., sheriff.
Gateshead, Robert Sterling Newall, Esq. ; Sunderland, Alderman
Gourley, Esq. ; Durham, Alderman R. Robson, Esq. ; South Shields,
Alderman Stevenson, Esq. ; Tynemouth, Edward Shotton, Esq.

November 15. — Died, at his residence, Dryburn, near Durham,
H. L. Wharton, Esq., aged 78 years As a county magistrate and
gentlemen he was held in the highest esteem, and amongst the poor
he was greatly venerated. To them he was a real benefactor,
relieving their wants liberally, and, at the same time, in the most
unostentatious manner.

November 25. — Died, after a short illness, at his residence, Oxford
Street, Mr. John Sabbage, Chief- Constable of Newcastle-on-Tyne.

November 29. — The foundation stone of a new building, to be used
for the Northern Counties' Orphan Institution, was laid by Mrs.
Abbot, in the presence of the Bishop of the diocese, the Mayor, the
Sheriff, and other members of the Corporation of Newcastle, and a
large number of spectators. The site of the building is on the edge
of the Town Moor of Newcastle. Mrs. Abbot, the lady who laid
the foundation stone, most munificently provided the funds (which
amounted to no less than £5,000) required to defray the cost of
erecting the building.

December 2 — This morning, the Derwent Valley branch of the
North-Eastern Railway was opened for traffic.

December 2. — The Pearl, a steam-tug belonging to the Tyne,
went out to sea in a heavy storm, in search of vessels to tow in ;
and, after buffeting the waves for some time, watched by numbers
of spectators on the piers and banks on the opposite side of the


haven, auunusually heavy sea was seen advancing to the steam-
tug. In less time than it" takes to write the fact, the mass of water
had completely engul plied the boat. For an instant — and an in-
stant only— were seen the spars of the Pearl, and then all was gone.
The crew nnmbered fonr, viz. : — Robert Chisholm, captain ; John
Chisholm, his brother, fireman ; J. Walker, engineer ; and William
Forster, a lad about 15 years of age, who had -only joined the vessel
the day before.

December 2. — This evening, Mr. George Stanley, lessee of the
Tyne Theatre, Newcastle-on-Tyne, made his first appearance in the
character of Hamlet at that establishment. He was received with
repeated rounds of applause ; throughout the performance he
rivetted the attention of the audience ; and, at the close of the
representation, received a well-merited call before the curtain.
The principal scene, between Hamlet and Ophelia, was impersonated
to perfection, both by Miss Desborough and Mr. Stanley.

December 4. — Mr. Brewis, solicitor, of Newcastle-on-Tyne, left
his home in his usual good health • and when he arrived at his
office, in the Arcade, he began to open and read his letters. While
doing so, he was heard to fall by his clerk (Mr. Warter). Turning
round, from the other side of a partition, which divided the office,
he saw that Mr. Brewis had fallen from his chair, and was lying
upon the floor. Mr. Warter immediately raised the poor gentle-
man's head, and gave an alarm. Medical assistance was sent for,
and arrived within a period of ten minutes ; but it was of no avail,
Mr. Brewis having died immediately after his fall. At the inquest,
held the same day, the jury, through their foreman (Mr. Ralph
Thompson, of the Arcade), returned a verdict, " Died from natural

December 8.— On Sunday afternoon. Mr. Jobling, an alderman of
Tynemouth, left his residence, Huntingdon Place, Tynemouth, for
the purpose of visiting his cousin, Mr. Thomas Jobling, who was
indisposed, and who resides at Point Pleasant, not far from Willing-
ton Viaduct, He remained at the house of his cousin until about
half-past eight o'clock in the evening, when he left to catch the
train at Howdon. After reaching the railway, he appears to have
got on to the down line, and walked between the rails ; when the
train, coming from Newcastle, knocked him down and killed him.
A verdict of accidental death was returned, after evidence had been
given to the effect that deceased was privileged to cross the bridge.
The deceased gentleman was held in high esteem. To the poor he
was an especial friend. A successful business man, his circumstances
were such as to enable him to dispense his charity with an
unsparing hand.

December 12. — The remains of the late Mr. Alderman Jobling
were interred in the family vault, in Earsdon Churchyard. Not-
withstanding that the funeral was of a strictly private character,
a number of gentlemen attended to pay their last respects to the


memory of the departed. The funeral corter/e proceeded from the
residence of the deceased shortly after half past ten o'clock ; and
consisted of a hearse (containing the soffin, which was covered with
black cloth and gilt mouldings), four mourning coaches, a-id fifteen
private carriages. The chief mourners were, R. F. Jobling, Esq.,
Mark Jobling, Esq., and M. W. Lambert, Esq. ; pall-bearers, John
Dryden, Esq., Joseph Laycock, Esq., Hugh Taylor, Esq. (Chipchase
Castle), T. C. Leitcb, Esq.. Anthony Davison, Esq., and A. Pring,
Esq. ; then followed the fifteen private carriages. The Mayor of
Tynemouth was also present in his carriage ; and with his worship
were the ex-mayor (John Hedley, Esq.), and Aldermen Fawcus and
Green. There were likewise present in carriages, Dr. Bourne,
Alderman Joseph Spence ; Councillors Popple well, Scott, and
Gibson ; Messrs. E. Young, J. F. Spence, Joseph Robinson, R.
Swan, J. Swan, W. Beaumont, R. S. Weir, W. Dunn, Jun., &c. ;
also, Mr. Redpath, secretary of the Good Design Association (of
which the late alderman was one of the vice-patrons, and a warm
supporter), and several of the members. On arriving at Earsdon,
they were met by the Rev. R. F. Mason, incumbent, who conducted
the funeral service in a very solemn and impressive maimer.

December 17. — A frightful and lamentable accident took place
on the Town Moor, Newcastle-on-Tyne, whereby eight persons lost
their lives, viz. : — Mr. John Mawson, Sheriff of the town ; Mr.
Thomas Bryson, Town Surveyor ; P.C. Donald Bain ; James Shot-
ton, employed by Mr. Turnbuil, White Swan Yard; Thomas
Appleby, son of Mr. Appleby, Carliol Street, employed at Mr.
Mr. George Hudson's, provision merchant, Cloth Market ; George
Smith Stonehouse, a youth, son of Mr. Christopher Stonehouse,
clock maker, Bath Row ; Samuel Bell Wadley, son of Mr Charles
Wadley, hat manufacturer. Heywood's Court, and residing at 47,
Villa Place ; a man, aged about 40, and about 5 feet 6 inches in
height, name unknown. A coroner's inquest was held on the body
of Mr. Mawson, the sheriff ; he having had the principal directions
in the proceedings. The following gentlemen were sworn on the
jury by the coroner of the borough, J. T. Hoyle, Esq : Mr. J. M.
Tilley (foreman), Mr. Owen, Mr. W. Guthrie, Mr. W. Brown, Mr.
R. Charlton, Mr. J. Redshaw, Mr. J. 0. Sturgeon, Mr. W. Hepple,
Mr. R. Cuthbertson, Mr. J. Wheatley, Mr. T. McKay, and Mr. J.
Robinson. The Mayor, the Town Clerk, the Under Sheriff (Mr. W.
S. Daglish), Dr. White, Mr. Cockroft (Coroner for South Northum-
berland), the Rev. H, W. Wright, Dr. Bolton, Mr. R. G. Green, Mr.
Councillor Dickinson, Mr. Spark, Mr. Tennant, and others were
present. From the evidence brought out at the inquest, it appeared
that a considerable quantity of a very dangerous material, which, on
examination, proved to be nitro-glycerine (for blasting purposes in
mines, &c), was stored in a cellar at the White Swan Yard, Cloth
Market. On examining the cellar, the police found eight tins.
After conferring with the magistrates and Town Clerk, it was order-
ed to be removed out of the town or destroyed. Not being able


to induce the Railway Company to cany it, it was decided to
destroy it by removing it to the Town Moor, and emptying it into
the earth at a part of the Moor where there was a subsidence in the
ground, caused by the workings of the Spital Tongues Colliery.
The Sheriff and Mr. Bryson determined to accompany the material
to its destination, and see it destroyed. When on their way to the
Moor, Mr. Mawson thought it desirable to examine one or two of the
cases, for the purpose of ascertaining what kind of instruments
would be required for opening them. While this was being done a
number of people congregated round the cart which was convey-
ing the material, and afterwards accompanied it to the Moor. On
arriving at the spot on the Moor,which is a little to the west of the
Cholera Hospital, there were eight canisters in baskets, and one
without a covering of that kind, taken from the cart and placed
upon the turf; and, by direction of the Town Surveyor and the
Sheriff, the cartman, the labourer, Sub -Inspector Wallace, and P.C.
34 A. Donald Bain (who had also been sent on this duty), pro-
ceeded to draw the corks. Mr. Bryson drew several of the corks,
a pricker being used for the purpose. They emptied the liquid of
the whole nine into the subsidence of the earth, and after this was
done they found that three of the canisters still felt weighty. The
Sheriff thereupon ordered the men to take off the ends, which was
done by means of a shovel, when it was found that a portion of
the contents had crystallised, and were adhering to the tin. The
Sheriff expressed a desire to obtain a piece of the crystallised ma-
terial, and asked for a piece of paper, but what followed is nob
known. He said, however, " Bring them away and we will bury
them on the other hill," referring to a hill a little further from where
they put the liquid material. He also gave directions to Sub-
Inspector Wallace to place some soil over the spot into which they
had poured the liquid. Wallace immediately engaged himself in
this occupation, and Bain, Shotton, Appleby, the Sheriff, and the
Town Surveyor, went away to the hill with the three canisters con-
taining the crystallised nitro-gl} cerine, for the purpose of burying
it. What occurred here is unknown, and probably never will be.
The Sub-Inspector had got his task completed, and was about
leaving to join the others, when a dreadful explosion took place.
Wallace felt the earth shake, and at the same time saw fragments
of clothing and other articles flying high up in the air. Though
so near to the scene of the explosion, he was happily uninjured
himself, his escape being accounted for by the fact that the bank
was between him and the explosion, He immediately proceeded
to the spot, and, on the west side of the hill, where the
explosion took place, found a portion of the body of P.C. Bain
dreadfully mutilated and shattered — the other portions of the
body, horrible to relate, being blown away. On the south side of
the hill w T as also a body frightfully mutilated : this was the body
of the cartman, Thomas Appleby ; and, near at hand, was the body
of Shotton, the labourer, also mutilated. In a hole of the ground,


immediately above, was a boy alive, but greatly injured : this was
the son of Mr. Wadley, living in Villa Place. The body of another
man, unknown, was also found. Mr. Bryson, severely injured,
was tying on the side of the bank to the eastward ; and immediately
on the top of the bank was Mr. Mawson, who was also much
injured. Wallace raised Mr. Bryson, but he was unable to speak
Mr. Mawson was able to raise himself up, and sat upon the grass.
Wallace, seeing nothing could be done by himself to aid the unfor-
tunate sufferers, promptly got into the cab which had brought Mr.
Mawson arid Mr. Biwson up, and which was waiting some distance
off, and drove into the town in order to procure medical aid. Rox-
burgh, the cabman, when left by Mr. Mawson and Mr. Bryson, was
told to remain a few minutes. After waiting for a time, his horses
began to get cold and weary, and he got upon the box and drove
them about a little. His attention was thus drawn away from what
was going on amongst the others. In a short time, however, the
explosion took place. The force of it blew him off his seat on to
the horses, and also broke the windows of the cab, though he was
at least one hundred yards from the spot. On looking round, he
saw clothes and one of the canisters flying in the air. He drove
Sub-Inspector Wallace rapidly down into the town, and Wallace
gave information of the occurrence to Mr. Joseph Fife and Dr.
Heath, who immediately proceeded to the scene of the disaster.
It was singularly fortunate that, at the moment of the catastrophe,
Mr. Walpole, one of the resident surgeons at the Infirmary, was
walking upon the Moor, at no great distance from where the explo-
sion took place. Dust, stones, fragments of clothing, and other
things suddenly surrounded him. Three hundred yards or so from
the spot where the proceedings had been going on, he found the
foot of a human being — presumably that of poor Bain ; and shreds
of clothing, human flesh, and other matter lay scattered about.
Mr. Walpole hurried forward, and discovered Mr. Bryson — a ghastly
spectac'e — lying in one of the excavations. After those about
had recovered their senses, it was proposed that, as Mr. Bryson to
all appearance was dead, it would be as well to leave him in the
adjoining hospital. Mr. Walpole, however, persevered, adminis-
tered stimulants, and upon his suggestion, the cart which had
brought the destructive material to the ground was made a means
of conveying these injured to the Infirmary. They were Mr. Bry-
son, Town Surveyor ; Mr. Mawson, the Sheriff of Newcastle ; and
Samuel Wadley, a boy who htd been a spectator. The boy Wad-
ley died about two hours after being admitted into the Infirmary.
Mr. Mawson and Mr. Bryson both died tie following night. The
jury returned the following verdict : — '• That death has been caused
by the explosion of nitro-glycerine accidentally ; and the jury are
unanimous'y of opinion that the law in reference to the storing of
nitro-glycerine has been grossly violated in this case."

December n 9. — The Dar]ingtcn Town Council met for the pur-
pose of appointing a mayor in the room of Mr. Joseph Pease, who


had defined to accept the appointment on account of age and in-
firmity. There was a full attendance of the members. The Re-
turning Officer, Mr. J. H. Bowman, presided. Councillor Walton
proposed Mr. Henry Pease as a fit and proper person to fill the
office. He remarked that Mr. Pease's election would do honour
and credit to the town. Councillor Potts seconded the proposition.
No other gentleman being proposed, Mr. Pease was declared duly
elected. Having made the declaration, the Mayor then addressed
the council, remarking that he had at one time thought that he
could not, with his many other public duties, accept the appoint-
ment. He had, however, consented, and would discharge the
duties devolving on him to the best of his ability. The Mayor then
invited the council to partake of breakfast on the first day of the
new year. He did not think it would be necessary in Darlington
to go to any place of worship in procession, as was done in some
towns on any particular Sunday. Alderman Joseph Pease offered
some remarks, with a view of preventing anything being done by
the mayor as now proposed, being converted into a precedent, and
becoming an expense upon members of the future. The mayor, in
reply, said he looked upon the present as a special occasion, being
t he first appointment of mayor, and had no intention of setting up
a precedent.

December 21. —An alarming fire broke out this morning at the top
of Akenside Hill (formerly Butcher Bank,), Newcastle-on-Tyne,
causing great destruction of property. It appears that the fire really
originated in the warehouse of Messrs. Bell & Dunn, ship-chandlers,
Queen Street. It was first seen about seven o'clock in the morning
by a young man named Richardson, in the employment of Mr. William
Southern, timber merchant, whose offices adjoin Bell and Dunn's
warehouse. Every exertion was made to extinguish the flames, but
it was not till near one o'clock that they w r ere mastered. Every
available fire engine was got out, and set to work, having those
from Tvne Dock, as well as Gateshead. The cause of the fire is
unknown. The cost of the buildings destroyed amounted to about

December 22. — Died, at his residence, Eldon Place, Newcastle-on-
Tyne, Alderman James Hodgson, Esq., aged 79 years, a magistrate
of the borough, Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Corpora-
tion, and one of the directors of the North-Eastern Railway. Mr.
Hodgson, for a considerable time, occupied a prominent position in
his native town. His father, Mr. Solomon Hodgson, having suc-
ceeded to the proprietorship of the Neivcastle Chronicle (on the death
of his father-in-law, Mr. Thomas Slack, in 1784, w T ho originated that
newspaper in 17G3), continued to conduct the paper until his death
in 1800, at the early age of 40 years. His widow succeeded to the
property, which she continued to conduct until 1822, when she died
in Union Street, in her 63rd year. From that period the late al-
derman and his brother Thomas carried on the Chronicle until it


was disposed of to Messrs. Lambert. Being thus, as it were, brought
up to politics, the deceased took an active part in the discussion of

Online LibraryT FordyceLocal records; or, Historical register of remarkable events which have occurred in Northumberland and Durham, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and Berwick-upon-Tweed, with biographical notices of deceased persons of talent, eccentricity, and longevity; (Volume 2) → online text (page 1 of 48)