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The Ashburton Guardian. WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 1, 1880. Coroners’ Inquests.

TOWN EDITION. [lssued at sp.m. ]

We are always open to correction, and shall be glad to be shown that we are in error in stating our belief that the object of a coroner’s inquest is either to allay or to confirm suspicions of foul play, suicide, neglect, carelessness, &c., that may have arisen in connection with the death of the subject of the inquest. The coroner’s inquest is a useful institution, but like many other good things, it can be abused, and become a cause of useless cost to the country, and a vexatious purposeless drain on the time of jurymen, and we contend that the institution of the inquest is being abused when jurymen are called together at asacrifice of their own time, to give a verdict that all connected with the affair knew was inevitable. The great majority of the inquests held in this district are of the character we have just referred to, and the result arrived at by the juries were mostly all confirmations of opinion as to the cases previously held by the police, and those who had any knowledge of the circumstances. An inquest was held yesterday. The man was kicked by a horse last week. He was brought into Ashburton to the Hospital, to have the injuries he sustained attended to. He was attended by Dr. Trevor, the coroner for the district, and the result of the kick was that the patient died. What necessity existed for an inquest, we are at a loss to know. From the man himself a knowledge of the circumstances could have been obtained; the coroner himself attended the man, and we don’t suppose anybody was likely to charge the coroner with maltreatment- anyhow, he would have been judge, of the charge, for he presided at the inquest; if a post mortem examination were necessary at all, that might have been held first, and by the hospital doctor himself, without troubling twelve men to spend an afternoon hearing evidence about it that proved nothing except that the man’s bowels had been injured and he died. With a complete knowledge of how the man got his injury, and with the coroner for his medical attendant, we repeat that the holding of the inquest yesterday was an unnecessary proceeding altogether—a waste of the jurymen’s time who sat on it, and a waste of some five guineas of public money paid away in coroner’s fees, and for the expense of a post mortem examination performed by Dr. Ross, which only proved how hard a horse can kick. We have no strictures to pass on anyone in connection with these inquests, we presume the officers who arrange for holding them are only doing their duty, but we contend that this duty is overdone in too many cases, and that the law would be satisfied quite as well were one half of the inquests held in this district not held at all. To-day another inquest is being held at Chertsey on the body of an infant. From what we am learn about

this case there appearsjto be just as little raison for holding Jn inquest as| in M|phael| to fille^icextremg^ herejSall Tire privacy 'of a family’s domestic life must be before/fwelve men, wl»o be om of job, and a sorgbwysg moffier hy %eMfeelibgs out-* r aded..feyjh^^o her deac£ inntrif must bout by the surgeons to prove —■ghat everybody knows —that , the child wasn’t murdered. The only\ reason that appears to exist for holdhS|f this inquest is that, living a long way from town, no medical man could well be called to attend to the infant. But if an inquest is’to be held on every child who dies before a doctor reaches it, then we can only say that the profession of a doctor is a very good one for those who follow it, for the inference is, that unless you call in a medical man when you have sickness in your house, your dead will assuredly be hacked about prior to an inquest, and all the outrage to your feelings that such an ordeal means will have to be suffered. This Cherlsey inquest will entail an expense of about to Government, and thus some j£i3 or ■£l4 of public money will have been spent in two days, besides half a day of the time of twenty-four men, to prove—nothing ! In these days of retrenchment we commend this avenue of expenditure to the Hall Government as one that wants stopping by about one-half its width, both in the interests of public economy, the public from whom the jurymen are called, and the public who are liable at any moment to be subjected to the legal indignity of a purposeless inquest on their dead.

Methven Pound. —Mr. J. Fitzgerald has been temporarily appointed Poundkeeper at Methven. Dynamite. —A lad had his thumb blown oft* yesterday at Auckland, by the explosion of a dynamite cap ho held in his hand. The Mount Somers Railway. —We observe that, during the wool season, trains will be run on the Mount Somers line for the purpose of bringing down the clip, and arrangements have been made for a supply of wagons and covers.' High School. —The Board of Go" vernors of the Ashburton High Schoo 1 sit from eleven till four to-day, _ ex* amining the testimonials of thirtyS : x applicants for the position cf head master of the High School. After deliberation, five applicants were chosen, whose expenses to Ashburton the Board was prepared to pay, so that their attendance personally on the 16tb. instant might be secured.

Maori Missions. —The Wesleyans in the Auckland district intend to supply the Maori stations with Maori ministers under European supervision, as soon as practicable.

The Volunteers. —Last night at the close of the usual parade, several candidates for vacant non-commissioned officerships were examined, and the appointments will be made shortly. The advisableness of holding a church parade was also discussed, but consideration of the matter was deferred till next parade night.

The Dramatic Club. —Mrs. Thompson, whose valuable services to the Dramatic Club have been highly appreciated, is to receive a benefit on Tuesday evening next, when the “ Lady of Lyons ” is to be produced, with Mrs. Thompson (Lizzie Lizette) as Pauline, and Mr. H. C. Jacobson as Claude Melnotte. This is an excellent opportunity for Mrs. Thompson’s friends to rally round her. A New Light. —A new story on light is related by the Montreal Witness “ Colonel Parijana, of the Public Works Department at Ottawa has a patent new light for marine purposes, which on the score of economy throws Edison’s electric light inco the shade. Through some chemical process he produces an everlasting light, which shines as many hours at night as it is exposed to the light in daytime. Once charged with the chemicals, a glass bowl can be placed on a buoy or a ship’s mast and will furnish a light. _He claims that it will last for ages, provided it is properly sealed, without re-charging.

Thomas Carlyle’s Wipe.— I The paragraph we published, headed “ Carlyle with his dead,” appears to have been read with some interest, for a correspondent sends us the full epitaph written on Mrs. Carlyle’s tombstone, which is a small tablet of white marble. The following is the tribute to her memory which Carlyle caused to be written on the tablet : —“ In her bright existence she had more sorrows than are common, but also a soft invincibility, a clearness of discernment, and a noble loyalty of heart wdiich are rare. For forty years she was the true and loving helpmate of her husband, and by act and word unweariedly forwarded him as none else could in all ot worth he did or attempted. She died at London, 21st April, 1866, suddenly snatched away from him, and the light of his life, as if gone out.”

A Fighting Parson. —The feelings of the Orangemen in Ireland are being strongly raised against the Land Leaguers. At a meeting near Gilford, County, Down, on Sept. 27, the Rev. R. R. Kane, M.A., made the following bellicose speech : —“lt may be necessary for us some day to start from Lifford and march through Tullybrit and Droraore, and Hillsborough, and Lisburn to Belfast, increasing as we go, and there, 200,000 strong, each man with a rifle in his hand, we could retrace our steps and go towards Dublin, and show to the whole world that if the game is to be a game of lead, then the Protestants of Ireland are ready to lake their part in that little game, and God defend the right. (Loud cheers.) I know what lam saying. I know the Protestants of Ireland, for I have been among them over the length and breadth of the land, and I say if it come to a game of lead we are the men who can play at that game, and the battle will be but a short one. ” A Much-enduring Girl.— The agony a lady must h<ve suffered who resides in Ballarat, and who has been made the subject of experimental surgery, may be imagined from the following extract from the'"(Star:—“ She had, some years ago, broken one of her collar-bones, which would not set without a portion of the bone being sawn off. This was done ; but even then the bones refused to knit, and then the other piece of bone had to be sawn, and yet they would not bind together except by drilling holes in the bones and fastening them by pieces of wire. The ends of the wire were not properly fastened, and after a little while forced themselves through the flesh ; her clothes catching on them, they had to be clipped. Still more pain and suffering. The wire commenced to corrode, and the flesh had once more, to be cut and the bone tampered with. A gathering had formed under it, and a silver pipe had to be inserted. The flesh was allowed to grow around it, and yet another operation had to be undergone before it could be extracted. The unfortunate girl is now very ill, and it is doubtful whether she will live much longer to undergo further agony. | Masonic. —Yesterday afternoon, Pai Master Bro. the Rev. James stalled theoffifiSJg n s£^ee®^it s^dga^fl WgffiafeTNo. 627, SIC., Masonic Halite- The officers installe#were —R.'P.M.j-Sro. W. Sparrowj#seputy Mastlt, Hio. fibJiPKenzie ; Bfo. Hfßritton ; b. B. Nelson ; J. W., Bro. D. Macfarlane ; S. D., )Bro. VV. Thompson ; J.D., Bro. J. Tail; 'Secretary, Bh6| G. Gaukrodger ; rreaaprejv Bro. T. S/iffth; i.G. , Bro. ' Shann ; Ttfer, Who. R. Cullen. The £OTemony M per^ffie^ fin the imj&sajfif Mf flutiesynna afrof-it had Jbeen performed, me suitably officers, and Proceeded to prisont, Lodge’s name, *a most gorgeouajewel of gold to the retiring master, Bro. Quill. This he did in a complimentary speech, stating that it was no small honor for a mason to secure the esteem of his fellow craftsmen while occupying the position of master of a lodge, and the gift he now tendered to Bro. Quill was one of no mean value. The jewel is an exceedingly handsome one, worked by Messrs. Coates of Christchurch, and bears the following inscription :—Presented to P.M. Bro. Quill by the members of the Thistle Lodge, No. 627, S.C. as a mark of their esteem. Ashburton, Nov. 30, 1880. In the evening a very successful ball in connection with the installation was held in the Town Hall, at which some - eighty couples were present. The hall was beautifully decorated for the occasion, and the music was supplied by Mr. Schwatz, Christchurch, Bro. Thiele, Ashburton, being caterer, and giving the utmost satisfaction. Dancing was kept up till about four o’clock this morning.

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Bibliographic details

The Ashburton Guardian. WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 1, 1880. Coroners’ Inquests., Ashburton Guardian, 1 December 1880

Word Count
1,960

The Ashburton Guardian. WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 1, 1880. Coroners’ Inquests. Ashburton Guardian, 1 December 1880

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