Unsolved Murders

Clara Dunrose

Age: 15

Sex: female

Date: 4 Apr 1910

Place: Rolleston Park Farm, Burton-on-Trent

Source: www.sclomax.co.uk

Clara Dunrose was found unconscious on the floor of a refrigerating room and died the following day.

She had been employed at a dairy farm, Rolleston Park Farm in Burton-on-Trent.

The doctor found a hole in her head and a portion of her skull bone fractured. He said that it was impossible for the injury to have been self-inflicted or caused accidentally although he did say that it could have been caused by falling on a nail.

A letter was read out at the coroners inquest that she had written in which she complained that she was harshly treated by the lads at the farm saying that she was treated like a dog. Further evidence indicated that she had complained about farm lads hitting her and pushing her down the previous night.

The coroner said that it was clear that Clara Dunrose was unpopular with the whole household and had been cruelly murdered.

A farm pupil said that only moments before she collapsed he had seen Clara Dunrose walking about around the farm and said that he didn't hear her scream or make a noise.

The farmers daughter had been carrying a basket which she dropped when she heard the news and ran to the dairy. The basket had blood on it which she could not explain and there was no blood where the basket had landed.

When the farmers daughter was told that one of the boys was likely to be arrested for the murder the daughter said, 'I know he has not done it. I am sure he is innocent'. She said that she had said that on the grounds that the boy had done everything possible for Clara Dunrose when she was found.

The hole in her head was a small round or oval hole in the skull on the right hand side. It went backwards, downwards and inwards into the brain to a depth of 1.5in. and at the bottom of the hole there was a small splinter of bone. The doctor said that the wound would have been produced by a sharp pointed instrument such as a pitchfork.  The doctor went back to the room where Clara Dunrose was found but could find nothing there that could have caused the injury. He said that he did not think a sharp stick could have done it.

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

see Aberdeen Journal - Thursday 26 May 1910

see Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Thursday 26 May 1910

see Derby Daily Telegraph - Thursday 26 May 1910

see Burton Mail