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Aldgate Fire Inquest

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Aldgate Fire Inquest

Post by Karen on Tue 26 Jul 2011 - 1:47

ALDGATE FIRE INQUEST.

Yesterday Mr. Samuel F. Langham, coroner, held an inquiry at the City Coroner's Court respecting the deaths of Katherine Sullivan, aged six years; Johanna Sullivan, aged three years; and Ada Mary Sullivan, aged eighteen months; the daughters of a labourer, who perished in the disastrous fire which broke out at 4, Little Somerset-street, Aldgate, on Saturday morning last. By a singular coincidence a child named O'Brien was found dead in bed at 5, Little Somerset-street, the next house to the scene of the fire, and an inquest was held at the same time, a verdict of "Death from suffocation" being returned. - Mrs. Sullivan, the mother of the three children who lost their lives at No. 4, told in her evidence the story which has already been published. - Dr. Henry James Sequira, of 34, Jewry-street, Aldgate, deposed that death in each case was due to suffocation.
The Coroner: Are the houses dangerous at all?
Witness: They are in my district as medical officer, and I am sure this house is the worst in the whole district.
The Coroner's officer said the owners of the property were the London and North-Western Railway Company. The Coroner said that was hardly a matter of which they could take notice in the present case. The jury returned a verdict of "Accidental death," and expressed their sympathy with the mother, to whom they handed a sum of over 3 pounds which they collected amongst themselves.

Source: Daily Mail, Wednesday May 27, 1896, Page 2

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Karen Trenouth
Author of: "Epiphany of the Whitechapel Murders"
Author of: "Jack the Ripper: The Satanic Team"
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Re: Aldgate Fire Inquest

Post by Karen on Tue 26 Jul 2011 - 1:50

THE FATAL CITY FIRE.
INQUEST ON THE VICTIMS.

THE MOTHER'S PAINFUL STORY.

At the City Coroner's Court today Mr. Samuel F. Langham held an inquiry with reference to the deaths of Catherine Sullivan, aged six; Johanna Sullivan, aged three; and Ada Mary Sullivan, aged 18 months, the daughters of a labourer. The children lost their lives on Saturday during a fire at 4, Little Somerset-street, Aldgate. Previous to taking the evidence, an inquest was held on the body of an infant whose death took place suddenly, from natural causes, on Saturday in a house next door to the scene of the fire.

THE MOTHER LOST HER WHOLE FAMILY.

Catherine Sullivan, the mother of the children, stated that she had only had the three children - Catherine, Johanna and Ada. On Saturday morning witness went out to get some wood to light the fire, and left the three children in bed. There was no fire in the room. While she was out she stayed to buy some bread, but was only away about 20 minutes altogether. On her return she found the room full of smoke; the floor was burning. She instantly rushed to the bed and picked up her second daughter, and carried her out on the landing, and then going back again she got the eldest girl, and also placed her on the landing, and then she went back again for the baby. She took the children to the surgery of Dr. Sequeira in Jewry-street. At the time she was not certain whether they were dead or not. When she left home there was not any food, firing, or money in the place. She could not say how the fire could have originated. She went as far as Whitechapel Church to get the bread, as near there she could buy six stale loaves for a penny.
Dr. Henry Sequeira stated that all three children were dead when brought to his surgery. Death was due to suffocation and scorching. He understood there was a fire in the room, and supposed a spark must have come from the fire and caught the carpet.

VERDICT.

The jury returned a verdict of "Accidental death," and made a collection for the parents.

Source: The Echo, Tuesday May 26, 1896, Page 3

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Karen Trenouth
Author of: "Epiphany of the Whitechapel Murders"
Author of: "Jack the Ripper: The Satanic Team"
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