Unsolved Murders

John Smith

Age: 45

Sex: male

Date: 20 Mar 1909

Place: New Dock Works, Alexandra Docks, Newport

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

John Smith was found dead near his watchman’s hut at the dock extension in Newport.

He was also known as Liverpool Jack.

John Smith was a cripple and only had one leg.

He was beaten to death.

A railway guard was charged with his murder but it was found that he had no blood on his clothes and he was released.

The man had known John Smith for fourteen years but had not been on friendly terms with him for 4 months. They had a row earlier in the night and the railway guard knocked John Smith down with a stick. John Smith had said that if he had had his other pin he would have dressed the man down a long while before. The railway guard was heard to have said, 'Jack, wherever you go, I'll follow you and kill you'.

However, the railway guard had then gone to work through the night with two other men that could vouch for him and he said he didn’t see John Smith again until they found him dead outside his hut. The driver of the train on which the guard was working said that it would have been impossible for the guard to have gone to the cabin between 1.15am and 5.40am without observation.


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


see Hull Daily Mail - Saturday 10 April 1909

see Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser - Friday 09 April 1909

see Derby Daily Telegraph - Monday 22 March 1909

see Western Times - Thursday 25 March 1909

see Lichfield Mercury - Friday 02 April 1909

see Western Daily Press - Tuesday 30 March 1909