Unsolved Murders

George Fell

Age: 56

Sex: male

Date: 9 Sep 1900

Place: General Post Office, Conway Street, Birkenhead

George Fell had been the caretaker of the General Post Office in Conway Street, Birkenhead and was killed in a robbery there on 9 September 1900.

The Post Office was open on the Sunday afternoon and he was found lying dead in a pool of blood in the postmaster’s room with his head battered in. His face was beaten to a pulp and unrecognisable. His body was carefully laid out on the hearthrug with a green bag over his head.

Blood was found immediately inside the door and at the back of the room there was quite a pool of blood. There was more blood right up the room, and going towards the front of the office in Conway Street, more stains were found. There was also blood on a mail bag and on the nail that the mail bag was hanging there was blood and hair.

The upper part of his head was smashed to pieces and his face was fearfully bruised and his left eye absolutely destroyed.

The robbers made away with £144 from a block tin safe from the registered letter department in the main office. It was found that a small room in the registered letter office that was partitioned off by wood and wirework had been entered and the safe box broken open from which notes and cash had been taken. The safe had been drilled open and forty-four registered letters taken out and opened, many of which were thought to contain valuables.

It was later found that the robbers had taken a number of postal orders from the registered letters which were thought would most certainly have been negotiated for although it was noted that they doubted that they would be presented at any post-offices directly, but considering they were almost as good as current coin of the realm it was thought that they might be exchanged at tradesmen’s shops, public houses and other establishments.

It was noted however, that the robbers had left behind many letters that had contained jewellery and other articles of value.

George Fell had been left in charge of the post office from 10am to 5pm. The post office was only open for a couple of hours in the morning and the afternoon and in the interval it was taken care of by the caretaker, George Fell. When he was found it was noted that he had not even begun to eat his dinner which the police said pointed to the probability that he was done to death some time before noon, probably while people were at church and the streets were quiet.

It was supposed that while the post office was shut that his murderers knocked at the door and he let them in. When the afternoon clerks arrived, they were unable to get in. Ultimately, they forced an entrance and found George Fell dead in the sorting room and blood about the building. He was found lying on a hearthrug in the postmaster’s room with a broken poker lying beside him.

It was noted that it was the third time in the last twelve months that that post office had been robbed and that on each occasion the thieves had got away scot free.

George Fell left behind a widow.

*map pointers are rough estimates based on known location details as per Place field above.

see find.galegroup.com

see "Singular Position Of A Board Of Guardians.-." Times [London, England] 10 Sept. 1900: 5. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 3 Mar. 2013.

see Museum Of Policing In Cheshire

see Leeds Times - Saturday 29 September 1900

see Cheshire Observer - Saturday 29 September 1900

see Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser - Saturday 15 September 1900

see Illustrated Police News - Saturday 15 September 1900