Old Haslingfield in the News: A Debtor’s End

Being in debt, and ill, was not a good state to be in in 1901. Thomas Purkin, or possibly Purkis, a 55-year-old labourer from Haslingfield, was committed to the County Gaol on September 27th. He was examined by the prison surgeon, and found to be suffering from “bonal disease of the thigh”. He was immediately sent to the hospital ward, and put on a special diet. He apparently knew of his serious condition, and said he was dying in greater comfort than he would have at home. He then developed pneumonia.

His instant discharge was ordered, but it was advised that he might die on the road home. A telegraph was sent to his wife, who spent his last evening with him. The coroner delivered a verdict of ‘Death from Natural Causes’.

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