ON THIS DAY…… 25th August 1902
On August 25th, 1902, the landlady of this residence, Goldar Mantel, entered the room of one of the residents, Rachael Samuel. Rachael was a young woman of “respectable parentage” who for whatever reason had been abandoned by her parents five years previously and was earning a living as a dressmaker. Rachael’s younger sister had been up to their sister’s room when one of them came down and asked Mrs Mantel for a bucket. Becoming suspicious, Mrs Mantel returned to the room and pulled back the covers on the bed to discover a newborn baby girl, who had been partially burnt. When asked what she had done, Rachael replied she could not help it! A midwife, Mary Ann Beattie, was called to examine Rachael and the baby. Rachael was described as being in a low state as she was severely haemorrhaging. Mary Ann did what she could to save the life of the baby girl but she soon passed away. The head and body of the baby girl where charred and cause of death at the post mortem was haemorrhage and shock from burns.
Rachael was charged with wilful murder and went to trial. She quite feeble during the trial and was seated on a chair for the duration. A nurse was also on standby with smelling salts and Rachael became quite distressed at times. At trial, Rachael was found not guilty and discharged.