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Source: Bell's Weekly Messenger, No. 1862, Sunday, December 11, 1831

[Inquest, St. Bride's workhouse]

A jury assembled on Monday in the committee-room of St. Bride's workhouse, to inquire into the circumstances attendant on the death of a boy unknown, whose body it appeared had been packed up in a case from Sheffield, and directed to a Mr. Holding, Moorfields, and which had been brought by the coach to the Belle Sauvage, Ludgate Hill. The coroner, on finding that the porter of the inn had not succeeded in finding out the person to whom the case had been directed, called the surgeon (Mr. Ray) who had examined the body. The latter stated he had no doubt but that the body had been sent up for dissection. In fact, he had in his possession a letter to that effect, and that the boy had died from consumption.

Coroner:—Had the body been buried? Witness: That I cannot say. My opinion is, that the body was sent up for the purpose of dissection. I have a letter which will throw some light upon the subject, but as I see a reporter present I shall decline entering into particulars, particularly at this time, when there is so much excitation in the public mind upon the same subject. Coroner: Every case rests upon its merits. All I wish to know is from whence the body had been brought, so that it may be returned to its friends, or in the absence of such information, I shall pursue the inquiry further. Witness: Sheffield and its environs are very extensive, therefore I cannot give you that information; the fact is, I will not here, but I shall be happy to communicate with you in private elsewhere. There is at the present moment so strong a feeling against medical men, that I deem it prudent to decline entering into further particulars, or giving the name of the writer of the letter. All I have to add is, that the body had no external marks of violence, and that the deceased had died of consumption. The jury, after a short consultation, found their verdict—That the deceased died of Consumption.