Shocking discovery in the search for Wybrants KINGHORN

14 Aug

I have been trying to convince myself these last couple of days that I am not getting obsessed with Wybrants KINGHORN, and that I am right in investing time and money in finding out more about him even though he is not a direct ancestor.

Tonight that all changed because waiting for me at home (not quite on the doormat, but near enough) was a copy of his death certificate. I knew he was only 34 when he died in 1866, so I suspected something unusual, but I wasn’t quite prepared for what I found.

I went to the informant part first because I was hoping to find out that his wife was the informant and I would then have her/their address. But no, she wasn’t the informant, it read “Information received from Edwin Lankester Coroner for Middlesex inquest held 31st October 1866”. My mind starts wondering whether the Middlesex Coroners records have survived and where they would be now.

My eyes moved across to the cause of death, and I gasped in disbelief Manslaughter, I couldn’t believe it someone had killed him. I read on, by wounding eye with an Umbrella. No, that can’t be, what sort of murder weapon is that? Still there was more against Joseph Taylor alias Welsh alias Joe the Grinder P.M. My god how many alias does one man need! And a nickname as well “the Grinder”, he sounds a real nasty piece of work. Whatever could have happened? At first I wasn’t sure about those initials at the end, I thought it was a surname (Pitts), the writing was getting indistinct, there wasn’t much space left in the box for the registrar to write in! Looking at it again I realised it was P.M. for post mortem.

Suddenly my doubts had gone, my decision to continue searching for Wybrants had paid off, the best £7.00 I have ever spent. It is a shame I am busy tomorrow or I would be up in London first thing tomorrow morning, hammering on the door of an archive (don’t know which one!) screaming to be let in so I could find out more. I can feel a days holiday coming up next week, which gives me a bit of time to find out where to look.

Wybrants death occurred at Middlesex Hospital on the 27th October 1866, and now I am left wondering what happened to his wife after that, and did they have any children. The list of questions have for Wybrants and his family seems to grow longer every day, but I am still nowhere nearer finding out where he was in 1851 and 1861.

2 Responses to “Shocking discovery in the search for Wybrants KINGHORN”

  1. Alex August 15, 2009 at 6:28 am #

    That registrar certainly gave you good service, recording so much info! You are checking out the newspapers, of course, to see what was reported? Coroners records generally weren’t kept, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed you come up with something, and would be interested to hear more about the “career” of Joe The Grinder Pitts.

    • wanderinggenealogist August 15, 2009 at 9:47 pm #

      Frustratingly none of the available online newspapers seem to mention it, but I think the Middlesex Coroners reports have survived at the London Metropolitan Archives. You are right, lots of information to point me in the right direction. Even the Coroner has his own page on Wikipedia!

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