Unsolved Murders


Age: 0

Sex: female

Date: 25 Jun 1906

Place: Long Hedge, Blows Downs, Dunstable

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

The body of a newly born female child was found on the evening of Monday 25 June 1906 wrapped up in a brown paper parcel off the Long Hedge on Blow's Down near to Church Street railway station.

The body was found by a labourer who had gone out for a walk on Blow's Downs in the company of others. They had gone along the Long Hedge, which was a public footpath from the Great Northern Road to the Downs when he had seen a brown paper parcel lying on a bank under a hedge about 30 yads from Half Moon Lane. He said that he picked it up and put it on the path and that another member of his company then cut the string of the parcel. He said that one end of the parcel was wet, but that the other was dry. He said that when they unwrapped the brown paper, which he said had no writing on it, they found a cardboard box tied up with string and that when they opened it they found the body of the child inside underneath some cotton wool.

It was noted that the footpath was not much frequented and that the parcel would have been easily visible to anyone passing along.

When the doctor examined the child, he said that it was that of a female child of full term and that it was in a state of decomposition and that it had evidently been dead for about a week or more. He said that he could find no marks of injury anywhere but discovered that the child had not had proper attention at birth. He said that when he examined the child’s internal organs that, owing to putrefaction, that he was unable to state whether the child had lived separately from its mother.

The coroner noted to the jury that owing to the state of putrefaction resulting in an inability to determine whether the child had had a separate existence, that they were at once relieved of bringing in the verdict of 'Manslaughter against some person or persons unknown' and they returned a verdict of 'Found Dead' adding that there was no evidence to show how the child came to its death or whether it had had a separate existence.

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

see Luton Reporter - Friday 29 June 1906