Term used in a coroner’s verdict to explain an unexplained death
The Hampshire coroner’s records were all destroyed which means that no
official records exist. The best remaining source is from local newspaper reports though not every inquest and verdict was reported. When reported the content varied from very brief to quite detailed. Examples of the brief ones follow.
His death was reported in Hampshire Advertiser 28 March 1840. He was a labourer aged 49 living in Broad Street, Point, Portsmouth. Evidence from his wife at the inquest on 24 March said he suffered chest pains. She went to a nearby druggist for medicine but found him dead when she returned. The coroner Thomas MARTELL gave his verdict that he died by Visitation of God. He was buried in Portsmouth St Thomas on 29 March.
Southampton and New Forest inquests
Reported in Hampshire Advertiser on 11 April 1840 were three similar verdicts given by coroner Mr. TODD. An illegitimate child aged 3 named William TOBY died at Eling. Cause of death was mortification of the bowel and he was buried at Eling on 3 April. His mother was Adelaide Eliza Augusta TOBY and he was baptized William Henry Oliver TOBY on 11 July 1836 in Eling. Elizabeth COUSINS was found dead in her master’s kitchen at Bishopstoke. John COLLINS 11 years old was found dead in his bed at Minesteed. Both verdicts were Visitation of God. Elizabeth COUSINS aged 50 was buried in Bishopstoke on 6 April. John COLLINS was buried in Minstead on 5 April.
Visitation of God verdict again
Reported in the same paper on 18 April 1840 the same verdict was returned three times by the same coroner. At Timsbury 3 month old Henry FIGGINS was found dead in bed. At Shidfield in Droxford parish 9 years old Olive STRUGNELL died from disease of the heart. In Fawley widow Mary TAYLOR died suddenly after eating a hearty supper. Olive was buried on 17 April in Shedfield. Mary aged 67 was buried on 19 April in Dibden. More details with a different verdict was reported at the inquest on William HALL held in the Winchester parish of St Maurice. He was a porter at the waggon office of Smith and Dawes and died from injuries falling off a ladder. This verdict was accidental death. William HILL aged 27 was buried in Winchester St Maurice on 14 April. Possibly the newspaper had misprinted the name.
HGS Research Centre
Wield MI Correction
As with all data that gets indexed or transcribed there is always the possibility that information can be misread due to bad handwriting or general aging. Whilst preparing information for the forthcoming village booklet on Wield I have found a prime example of this.
Our Amazing Volunteers
A big, big thank you to the Bookstall volunteers who made Family Tree Live such a success. We were kept very busy for both days of the event helping people in the search of their Hampshire ancestors. And of course welcoming our many new members. L-R Angela Winteridge, Margaret Bowman, Chris Pavey, Fiona Ranger, Geoff […]
We’re at Family Tree Live – are you?
Come and see us Friday 25th and Saturday 26th April at Family Tree Live at the Alexandra Palace, London. We are on Stands 37-38a where we will have a wide selection of HGS Publications, Maps, Genealogy Source Guides as well as Local History books and information for the whole of Hampshire.
New Winchester Group
UPDATE ON THE NEW WINCHESTER GROUP!!! The inaugural meeting of the new Winchester Group will take place at Littleton Memorial Hall on Thursday 16th May 2019. Door open at 7.15 for 7.30 start. And it’s a packed agenda for the first meeting!!! * Members of the Executive Committee will give an update on the […]
Empshott village booklet now available
Empshott, (VB102) is a small, sparsely populated parish 6 miles north of Petersfield and 2 miles south-east of Selborne with the B3006 running through the parish from Greatham north-west to Selborne.