Unsolved Murders

Samuel Ezra Morris

Age: 57

Sex: male

Date: 15 Mar 1937

Place: Manchester Road, Accrington

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

Samuel Ezra Morris was knocked over by a car that didn't stop on the Manchester Road in Accrington.

He was a master electrician and had lived at 16 Bridgehouses in Baxenden, Accrington.

The car that hit him was described as a dark-coloured saloon.

He had boarded the omnibus near the Alma Inn in Baxenden.

He then alighted from a Rawtenstall Corporation omnibus going to Haslingden at about 10.45pm on the night of 15 March 1937 and was crossing the road behind the bus to Alliance Street when he was struck a glancing blow by the motor car that was proceeding towards Haslingden.

It was said that to get across the Manchester Road to Alliance Street, Samuel Morris, would have had to have walked diagonally across the road. It was said that it was whilst he was doing that that a car that had been coming from Accrington along the Manchester Road saw him and very properly applied his brakes. However, it was said that the other car, that was behind the first car, did not slacken his speed, but instead came past the first car and struck Samuel Morris, and drove off without stopping.

It was noted that no horn had been sounded.

A man that saw the incident said that the driver of the second car had appeared to have seen Samuel Morris in the roadway and to have appeared to have been steering his car to get clear of him. The man said however, that after the impact, it appeared that the second car then went on like lightening, with the first car then giving chase.

Another man that saw the second car pass the first car said that it was a saloon car and that it passed him at a very fast pace. He said that it didn't appear to slow down in any way, and although it veered to the right, it didn't stop.

Samuel Morris sustained a fractured skull and other head injuries. An ambulance was summoned immediately but he died before reaching the Victoria Hospital in Accrington.

The police surgeon said that Samuel Morris was injured about his right eyebrow and had a fracture of his frontal bone which had been shattered and driven into his brain. He said that all the injuries pointed to the fact that it was his head that was struck.

It was noted that the first car had chased the second car that had hit Samuel Morris as well as he could but had failed to catch him. However, his wife managed to observe certain index numbers and letters from the cars registration number.

The Coroner said that it was a hit and run case. He added that there was no doubt that the case put them one step nearer to the institution of special road traffic courts. The Coroner also added that it was impossible for the driver of the second car, who had not come forward, to say that he had not heard of the case.


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


see Lancashire Evening Post - Thursday 18 March 1937

see Lancashire Evening Post - Wednesday 17 March 1937

see Lancashire Evening Post - Tuesday 16 March 1937