Unsolved Murders


Age: 0

Sex: male

Date: 29 Nov 1924

Place: River Ouse

The body of a newly-born male child was found on the bank of the River Ouse on 29 November 1924.

It was found by a 64-year-old woman as she was out picking up sticks on the west bank of the river.

She had lived on the west side of the road leading to Downham from Salter's Lode and on the east side of the road was the west bank of the River Ouse, which was tidal at that part as far as Denver sluice.

The woman said that she had gone out at 3pm on 29 November 1924 picking up sticks on the west bank of the river when she saw what she thought was the body of a child lying in some weeds face upwards, two yards away.

However, she said that she then went home and thought no more about it and didn't tell anyone.

She said that she noticed that it had had something tied round its neck.

She said that she didn't think any more about it until 3 December 1924 when her neighbour came to see her and said:

I've found a baby on its back on the bank.

The 64-year-old woman then replied:

I thought it was a baby last Saturday.

A policeman then came along and he went and fetched the baby.

The 64-year-old woman said that she didn't know whose baby it was or anything about it, noting that she had not heard of a child being missed or born in that neighbourhood.

The police constable said that when the 64-year-old woman told him where the baby was he went to the spot and saw it lying there about eight feet from the top of the bank and three feet below the high water mark. He said it was naked and had a piece of black tape round its neck tied very tightly under the right ear. He said that he then took it to the nearest house.

He said that the body was quite clean and could easily be seen from 20 yards away.

The doctor that examined the child said that it was that of a newly-born male child and that from its state, it had not been dead for more than a week, if as much.

He said there were no marks of violence and that the braid round the neck was tied so tightly that he could not untie it.

He said that he could find no evidence to show whether the child had been alive when put into the water and that if it had been born alive that it had perished from strangulation within minutes of birth. However, he noted that he could present no evidence to say whether the child had been born alive or dead.

see www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

see Lynn Advertiser - Friday 12 December 1924