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SUICIDE OF A BLUECOAT BOY.

On 14th July, Mr. Payne held an inquiry in the infirmary of Christ s Hospital, Ni-wgate-street, concerning the death of William Arthur Gibbs, one of the scholars of the hospital, who committed suicide by hanging. William Gibbs, a glass painter, of 3!17, Kingsland-road identified the body of the deceased as that of his son. He was 12 years of age. Deceased was naturally of an open and kindly disposition, but was possessed of a somewhat stubborn temper. He had been for several years nt tho schools belonging to the hospital at Hertford, and rnmo to Londun just after the Easter holidays. Since then he had ran away twice, the first time about three weeks ago, and the other on Monday last. On the first occasion witness took him back to tho school, and he afterwards received a flogging with tho birch ns a punishment. On Monday afternoon last deceased ran away again, and on the npxt day witness told deceased that he must return to the school, when the latter said, " Dear pa, I will never remain under that monitor as long os I live; I would rather hang myself," Witness remonstrated with the deceased for talking in such a manner, and then he said, " Ho t jats me cruelly ; he is a tyrant ;" he has been so since tiie athletic sports were held, when I won three prizes." The deceased said he had not complained of the conduct of the monitor, ns no notice would have been taken if he had done so, and he would have been treated worse than ever. Witness then got n friend of his to take the deceased back to (life school. At the parting deceased. Mid, "-Da you forgive me, pa ? " and the witness answered " Yes, I do." They then parted, nnd he never saw him alive after. (Witness Here wept bitterly.) Deceased also told him that when at the baths some time previously, the monitor held him under water for some time, and frequently made him " fag." — Major Bracken bury, the warden of the .school, safti the decoased never made a complaint to him. Monitors were not fallowed to inflict any punishment.—Mary Ptrrin, assistant nurse, deposed to taking breakfast up to the deceased, all of wliicb he ate, and at holf-past 1.0, when he was locked in alone in tUe infirmary, he appeared quite cheerful. At 20 minutes' to 12 she found him suspended by the cord nttachetl to the ventilator in the window. His fpet were nearly touching the ground.— Mr. Alder Smjth, the surgeon, gave evidence as to the cause of death being strangulation by Hanging. Herbert Arthur Copeland, aged li, said he was one of the monitor* over the deceased. Deceased was not a good hoy. He was quarrelsome aud determined, and "he hail had rows with the deceased about his untidiness. He had no power to strike a boy, but l\ad seveval times struck the deceased and made him cry, He did tliis because the deceased told, untruths. Deceased acted as his "fag" sometimes, though he was paid for it. Deceased fought with another lad during religious ; instruction on Suuday lost, and for this lie im to have been reportiJu to the head master ou tfa£. folio wiug day, when ha left school. Witness bslieved that the deceased waa going t« complain, to the head master about Mr. Maekay, one of the junior masters, for knocking lum a,bout. Could not assign any reason for deceased's suicide.— The Rev. Charles A. Lee, M.A-, the Head roajbter, said tUat he could not understand Copeland's statement as to the disturbance at the religious instruction, as them w.as.so much supervision.— The jury returned a, yerdict of " Suicide whilst in a state of temporary insanity."

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/EP18770918.2.14

Bibliographic details

SUICIDE OF A BLUECOAT BOY., Evening Post, Volume XV, Issue 219, 18 September 1877

Word Count
627

SUICIDE OF A BLUECOAT BOY. Evening Post, Volume XV, Issue 219, 18 September 1877

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