Alleged murder in Liverpool

Saturday, April 14 – 1878
A tragedy of a shocking character was enacted on Saturday night last in Hudson-place, Everton-village, Liverpool. Hodson-place is a narrow thoroughfare running from Everton-village towards Queen’s-road. The houses in it are small and old, and are occupied mainly by working people of a somewhat rough type.

There are a number of cellar dwellings in the streets, in one of which lived George Armstrong, a young labourer, and his wife. On Saturday evening, Armstrong was intoxicated and quarrelsome, and about half-past eight o’clock was seen fighting in Hodson-place with a man who seems to have been a strange in the neighbourhood.

The fight lasted some minutes, and after it was over Armstrong went into a cellar occupied by William Fenlond, a shoemaker. Whether or not he quarrelled with Fenlond has not transpired, but in a few minutes a woman named Mary Rainford, who lives in the same street, looking into Fenlond’s cellar saw him kicking Armstrong, who was lying on the floor.

She ran into the cellar and courageously defended him from further violence. In doing so she received a severe kick in the side intended for the prostrate man. Armstrong’s wife, learning what had occurred, rushed in and dragged her husband into their own cellar, which was some few doors away. He sat down on a chair and leaned his head upon a table, apparently intending to go to sleep. Half an hour afterwards Mrs. Armstrong, in trying to rouse him, found that he was dead.

Dr. Price, of Breck-road, was called in, but declined to express any opinion as to the cause of death. Police-constable 287 arrested Fenlond, who was lodged in the main Bridewell, Cheapside, and was on Monday morning last taken before the magistrates, charged with causing Armstrong’s death.

He appears to have been sober at the time of his arrest. It is said that in the course of the fight in the street Armstrong was knocked down; but whether or not he was injured in this encounter is uncertain. He got up without assistance and went at once into Fenlond’s cellar, where the second and fatal affray took place.
(North Wales Express, 18-04-1878)

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