Unsolved Murders


Age: 0

Sex: male

Date: 15 Mar 1925

Place: Nottingham Canal, London Road, Nottingham

The body of a newly-born child was found in the canal at Nottingham when it was drained on Sunday 15 March 1925.

There were actually two bodies found but the other one, which was found further towards the cattle market, was found to have been stillborn.

The canal had been emptied for cleaning purposes at the time and both bodies were found embedded in the mud.

The child that was found that had had a separate existence and as such was murdered was found in the mud in a sack. It was in a sack and wrapped up in a part of a shirt and a pair of trousers along with a brick. The brick was in the sack and the whole parcel was then attached by a rope to a boulder which was embedded in the mud. The child itself was dressed in a nightdress.

It was found by a police sergeant near the spot where the canal passed under the London Road. He said that he noticed a sack in the mud through which a hole an arm was showing and that when he recovered the sack that he found that it contained a child's body which was wrapped up in part of a shirt and a pair of trousers. He said that the child was clothed in a nightdress and other baby's clothing.

At the inquest the Coroner inquired as to whether the various articles of clothing had been preserved and remarked that 'with much less than that a Scotland Yard detective would find the man'.

The post-mortem concluded that the cause of death was a fractured skull and not drowning. The pathologist said that whether the fracture was caused by the child's head coming into contact with the brick in the sack or by a blow before the body was put in the sack he could not say.

However, he noted that there was evidence that the child had had professional attention at birth.

It was thought to have been in the water for about three weeks and that death was due to violence inflicted by someone whilst the child was alive.

The Coroner's jury returned a verdict of murder by some person or persons unknown.

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

see www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

see Hartlepool Northern Daily Mail - Wednesday 18 March 1925

see Taunton Courier, and Western Advertiser - Wednesday 01 April 1925

see Nottingham Evening Post - Tuesday 17 March 1925