The Foxearth and District Local History Society
1862 Norfolk Chronicle newspaper Selections

January 2nd 1862

Mr. Thomas Richmond Pinder, head master of Hingham Endowed School, was elected head master of the new Commercial School, built on the site of the old Workhouse, adjoining St. Andrew’s Hall, Norwich, at the cost of about £1,500. The school was designed by Mr. James S. Benest, architect to the trustees, and built by Messrs. Ling and Balls. It was opened as King Edward the Sixth’s Commercial School, on July 28th.

January 19th 1862

An alarming fire occurred in the centre wing of Swaffham prison. The inmates of the cells, who were greatly terrified, were safely removed, and afterwards conveyed to Norwich Castle. The roof of the new portion of the prison was completely destroyed, with three looms and a considerable quantity of stock in raw materials and manufactured articles.

January 28th 1862

Died at Swainsthorpe, Eleanor Harrison, widow, aged 101.

January 30th 1862

A rifle match, between eleven Norfolk and a like number of Northamptonshire Volunteers, took place at the seat of Earl Spencer, Althorp Park. The teams were under the respective commands of Lord Bury and Earl Spencer. Northamptonshire won by 170 points against 164 made by their opponents. The return match, which took place on the Mousehold Range, Norwich, on September 27th, was also won by Northamptonshire, by 17 points.

February 1st 1862

“A private named Thomas Nelson, attached to one of the troops of the 5th Dragoon Guards, now stationed in Norwich, is said to have become the possessor of a fortune of £70,000, besides a fine estate near Liverpool, of the value of £9,000 per annum.”

February 3rd 1862

H.R.H. the Prince of Wales visited Norfolk, “for the purpose of inspecting the Sandringham Hall estate, with the view of purchasing it for shooting purposes, for which it is well adapted.” On the 22nd it was announced that his Royal Highness had concluded the purchase for £220,000, and, it was added, “Norfolk people entertain strong hopes that they shall see a good deal of their future Sovereign.”

February 15th 1862

The subject of the proposed amalgamation of the Eastern Counties, the Norfolk, the Eastern Union, the East Anglian, and other railways’ communicating with Norwich obtained publicity on this date. The Norwich Town Council, on the 21st, decided to petition Parliament against the Railway Amalgamation Bill, on the ground that the amalgamation was calculated to injuriously affect the citizens by depriving them of the advantages of competition in railway transit.

March 1st 1862

Died at his house at Charlton, Kent, aged 86, Professor Peter Barlow, F.R.S. He was born in the parish of St. Simon, Norwich, in October, 1776. Related to one of the leading manufacturing families in the city, the Columbines, his early life was passed in their warehouse. He continued there about three years, and during that period acquired, by his own industry, a considerable knowledge of algebra, geometry, trigonometry, navigation, and French. Subsequently he obtained a situation in a school in Essex, and afterwards proceeded to Shipdham, when, the master dying, he succeeded to the school, and married a Shipdham lady. He commenced a regular correspondence with the “Ladies’ Diary,” then under the management of Dr. Hutton, professor of mathematics at Woolwich, whose attention was favourably attracted by the contributions furnished by Mr. Barlow. Dr. Hutton recommended him as candidate, in 1801, for the post of additional master at the Royal Military Academy, and he was successful. In 1811 he published his first work, “The Theory of Numbers,” in 1813, “The Mathematical Dictionary,” and in the same year his “Mathematical Tables.” In 1817 his work, “The Strength of Materials,” was published. In 1819 he turned his attention to magnetic experiments, in which he was very successful in developing the laws of action and in the application of those laws to the correction of a long-standing error in navigation. For this discovery he received several honorary and pecuniary rewards. His “Essay on Magnetic Attraction” was published in 1819.

March 25th 1862

The new Poor Removal Act came into force. It materially altered the law of settlement, and made new regulations as to the manner in which parishes contributed their share to the common fund charges of the unions.

March 31st 1862

An accident occurred at a circus building at St. Stephen’s Gates, Norwich, hired by Mace and King, the pugilists, for the purposes of a benefit performance. The rows of seats elevated one above the other and forming the pit were densely crowded with spectators, whose weight broke the frail supports, with the result that the centre of the pit fall with its load of human beings. Many were severely bruised and shaken, and one man, suffering from a broken leg, was removed to the Hospital.

April 10th 1862

Madame Jenny Lind Goldschmidt appeared at a miscellaneous concert, given at St. Andrew’s Hall, Norwich, and on the 11th sang in Haydn’s oratorio, “The Creation.” The other _artistes_ included Mr. Sims Reeves, Signor Belletti, Mr. H. Blagrove (solo violin), Signor Patti (solo violoncello), and Mr. Otto Goldschmidt (pianoforte). The chorus for the oratorio was composed of members of the Cathedral choir and of the Norwich Choral Society.

April 21st 1862

Tom Sayers, “the pugilistic ex-champion,” visited Norwich with his circus, “exhibited his belts, medals, and the diamond ring presented to him by the students of Oxford, and set-to with young Hicks, of Birmingham.” Heenan, the American pugilist, brought a circus to Norwich on September 11th, and “apologised to the spectators for not sparring, as the authorities had forbidden him, and it was only on giving this promise that he was allowed to erect his tent on the Castle Hill.” Mace’s circus visited the city on October 6th. “The spectators were disappointed at the non-appearance of Mace, the magistrates having forbidden him to give an illustration of his noble art.”

May 3rd 1862

“Died last week, at Rackheath, Phœbe Clayburn, at the advanced age of 103 years. She had 22 children, and her eldest son is now living at Bramerton, aged 80 years; her grandchild is 50; her great-grandchild is 20, and her great-great-grandchild is now two years of age.”

May 4th 1862

The large tract of land known as the Middle Level of the Fens, which had been greatly improved by the construction of the Middle Level Drain, a small river which collected the waters of the district and discharged them into the Ouse near Wiggenhall St. German’s, was inundated, in consequence of a breach in the sluice erected at the point where the two streams joined. The tide, no longer confined to the channel of the Ouse, rushed up the drain, broke through the bank on the west side at two places, and, in a wild torrent, overspread the adjacent lands. Efforts were at once made to strengthen the dams, by placing vast quantities of clinch and gravel at the foot of the piles. On June 20th, a meeting of the owners and occupiers of land was held at the Globe Hotel, Lynn, under the presidency of the Rev. Henry ffolkes, at which resolutions were passed requiring the Middle Level Commissioners to take prompt and efficient measures to prevent the recurrence of such a disaster. It was also agreed that more satisfactory means for redress for damage should be given than were afforded by the Middle Level Act, and that application be made to Parliament for the insertion in the Middle Level Bill then before the House of Lords of necessary provisions for securing both objects. At the Norfolk Assizes, on July 29th, before Lord Chief Justice Cockburn, commenced the long course of litigation resulting from the inundation. Mr. William Mason, lessee of 18 acres of land at Tilney All Saints, within the Marshland Fen district, sued Mr. Wise, clerk to the Middle Level Commissioners, for the recovery of £500 damages sustained through the alleged negligence of the Commissioners in making and maintaining the Middle Level Sluice and Drain. Leave was given to both sides to move in the Common Pleas or Queen’s Bench for the removal of the trial to London. On August 16th it was announced that the expenses incident to the disaster were estimated at about £25,000, to meet which £20,000 had been taken up by way of temporary loan. A second disaster occurred on October 4th. One of the outfall sluices of the Marshland Smeeth and Fen Drain, an important arterial drain running into the Ouse about 200 or 300 yards northward of the ruined Middle Level Sluice, gave way, and again a wide extent of country was submerged. Four hundred navvies were at once set to work to form a dam of many thousands of sacks filled with earth. On the 5th the temporary dam gave way bodily, and the entire mass having been carried a score yards up the drain, sank out of sight. The tidal water having overcome the obstacle, went with a rush and a roar on its work of devastation, carrying with it great quantities of earth and timber. About 1,000 acres were flooded; 4,000 acres were under water before the completion of another temporary dam on the 8th. After that the water was removed by means of huge syphons. On November 10th the Court of Common Pleas refused a rule for the changing of the venue of the trial of the action, Mason _v._ Wise, from Norfolk to Surrey, and with this decision ended the first stage of the legal proceedings. (_See_ January 31st, 1863.)

May 5th 1862

The Braham Grand English Opera Company commenced a six nights’ engagement at Norwich Theatre, with the performance of “Il Trovatore.” The other operas produced during the engagement included “The Bohemian Girl,” “Robin Hood,” “The Daughter of the Regiment,” “Der Freischutz,” “Cinderella,” and “Lucia Di Lammermoor.” Among the principals were Miss Fanny Ternan, Miss Maria Ternan, Mdlle. A. Kemp, Mr. Brookhouse Bowler, and Mr. Hamilton Braham.

May 24th 1862

The Norfolk Volunteer Service Association was formed at a meeting held at the Shirehall, Norwich, under the chairmanship of the Lord Lieutenant, who was elected president. Its objects were, “the promotion of rifle shooting and giving permanence to the Volunteer corps throughout the county.” The first prize-meeting was held on the Mousehold Range, Norwich, from September 8th to 11th.

May 27th 1862

The Channel Squadron, under the command of Rear-Admiral Robert Smart, arrived in Yarmouth Roads, and on June 1st was joined by the St. George, with H.R.H. Prince Alfred on board. The Squadron sailed for the Downs on the 4th.

June 11th 1862

In the Divorce Court, before Sir C. Cresswell, judgement was given in the action, Burroughs _v._ Burroughs and Silcock. This was a cross suit. Mrs. Burroughs prayed for the restitution of conjugal rights, and her husband, in his answer, charged her with adultery, and prayed for a judicial separation. In the second case Mr. Burroughs prayed for a dissolution of marriage, on the ground of his wife’s misconduct. The second case had been tried by a common jury on March 6th, 7th, 8th, and 13th, and terminated in a verdict that neither the petitioner, the respondent, nor the co-respondent had been guilty of adultery. His lordship had deferred judgment in the first suit, in order that his opinion might not affect the opinion of the jury in the second suit, which had not then been tried. He now said he thought Mrs. Burroughs had misconducted herself, and he could not order her husband to take her home again. He, therefore, dismissed her petition for restitution. He refused, however, to pronounce a decree of judicial separation, on the ground that as the parties themselves had been examined, he could not treat the husband’s answer as a counter petition.

June 16th 1862

At Swaffham County Court, a jury was engaged in the trial of an action, Green _v._ Sayers. The plaintiff, a shoemaker, sought to recover £25 damages for an assault by the defendant, described as “a circus proprietor, but better known as the ex-champion of England.” The case excited great local interest. “The defendant,” it was said, “conducted himself with a degree of modesty, propriety, and decorum that caused no little feeling in his favour.” The assault arose out of a dispute as to the withholding of change alleged to be due to the plaintiff on money tendered for admission to the defendant’s show, and the jury gave a verdict for Green, damages £5.

June 19th 1862

A great Volunteer review took place at Yarmouth. The first brigade of 910 men was commanded by Lieut.-Col. Astley, Norfolk Artillery; the second (1,230 men) by Lieut.-Col. Sir E. Lacon, Bart., M.P., and the third (350 men) by Lieut.-Col. Custance. The reviewing officer was Col. Guy, C.B., and the proceedings were witnessed by many thousands of spectators.

June 24th 1862

Died, in the Workhouse of the Loddon and Clavering Union, in her 105th year, Mary, widow of Samuel Lock, of Loddon.

June 24th 1862

An extraordinary fight took place between a bull and a stallion, both the property of Mr. James Coker. The animals were grazing in a field near the Chase at King’s Lynn, and became engaged in a deadly combat, which ended in the bull disembowelling the horse with its horns. The stallion was valued at £60.

July 1st 1862

The marriage of H.R.H. Princess Alice and the Grand Duke of Hesse was celebrated throughout the county with great rejoicing. The day was observed at Norwich as a public holiday; at a special meeting of the Town Council a congratulatory address to the Queen was adopted; the Mayor gave a luncheon at St. Andrew’s Hall, and in the evening a firework display was given in the Market Place.

July 1st 1862

At the Norwich Quarter Sessions, before the Recorder (Mr. O’Malley, Q.C.), Edward Durrant (27), grocer, surrendered to his bail on the charge of “having by fraud in playing with cards won the sum of 14s., the money of Samuel Boughton, at the Star Inn, Haymarket, Norwich.” There were other counts, charging the defendant with defrauding other persons by the same means. Mr. Serjeant Ballantyne, specially retained, succeeded in obtaining a verdict of not guilty. The Recorder observed: “Well, prisoner, you have had a most merciful jury; that is all I can say.” The defendant was cheered as he left the Court.

July 9th 1862

The first of the peripatetic shows of the Norfolk Agricultural Association was held at East Dereham. “The cautious and timid members of the Norfolk Association who prophesied that so many dark and dreadful events would happen to the society if absolved from her marriage vow which wedded her entirely to Norwich, and Swaffham, must have been pleasantly surprised by the entire success of the Dereham meeting.” So great was the rush to the show-ground that more than once the barrier was broken down. The sum of £230 was taken in admission money, whereas it had never before amounted to £150, and rarely exceeded £80.

July 17th 1862

Mr. Henry Stevenson, one of the proprietors of the NORFOLK CHRONICLE, was driving through Upper Surrey Street, Norwich, with his wife, when the horse started off at full speed in the direction of All Saints’ church, where the phaeton was upset, and Mrs. Stevenson sustained injuries from which she died an hour afterwards.

July 27th 1862

Died, in St. John de Sepulchre, Norwich, the Widow Rumsby, aged 100 years.

July 27th 1862

Died, in London, Mr. H. L. Styleman le Strange. He was the only son of Mr. Henry Styleman, of Snettisham Hall, where he was born in 1815. Educated at Eton and at Christchurch, Oxford, he travelled, on the completion of his University career, in Egypt, and, returning home in 1836, his majority was celebrated at Hunstanton Hall, the ancient residence of the le Stranges. In 1839 he procured the Royal licence to assume the patronymic surname of le Strange, in addition to that of Styleman, and in the same year married Jamesina Joice Ellen, daughter of Mr. John Stewart, of Balladrum, Inverness, by whom he left issue two sons and three daughters. Mr. le Strange, acceding to the request of the Conservative party, stood for the Western division of the county, and was defeated by a small majority. He left the hustings with the promise that at the next election he would again offer himself; he kept his promise, but eventually withdrew, and retired from politics. He then commenced his great work of painting the roof of Ely Cathedral, on the design and execution of which he bestowed many years of hard toil. At his death the work was about half completed, and he had only recently received recognition of his artistic talents by being appointed a member of a commission for investigating the state of the frescoes in the new Houses of Parliament. Hunstanton church is a monument to his taste and skill. Mr. le Strange was senior co-heir to the baronies of Hastings and Foliot, and co-heir to those of Camoys and Strathbolgie. He had served the office of High Sheriff of Norfolk, was a magistrate and deputy lieutenant, and a director of the Lynn and Hunstanton Railway Company.

July 30th 1862

Mr. Simmons, of Lydney, Gloucestershire, made a balloon ascent from the Orchard Gardens, Norwich, and, after attaining an altitude of 5,000 feet, descended in Spixworth Park. There he lightened the balloon by landing a fellow-passenger, and having re-ascended to the height of 12,000 feet, finally came to earth in Mr. Trafford’s park at Wroxham. Mr. Simmons made another ascent from the Orchard Gardens on September 8th, and descended at Little Plumstead; and after re-ascending, came down among the ruins of St. Benet’s Abbey.

August 28th 1862

A cricket match, between twenty-two of Norfolk and Norwich and eleven of United All England commenced on the Cricket Ground, Norwich, and concluded on the 29th. Norfolk and Norwich, 73—75; United All England, 119—31.

September 8th 1862

A trial of McCormick’s new reaper took place on Mr. Clare Sewell Read’s farm at Little Plumstead. The experiments were conducted by Mr. McCormick, the inventor, and Mr. Burgess, the manufacturer of the machine, in the presence of Baron Ricasoli, ex-Prime Minister of Italy, and of several other foreigners of distinction.

September 11th 1862

Three troops of the 5th Royal Irish Lancers, with headquarters and band, arrived at Norwich. “Although the regiment has been formed only five years, the principal portion of the non-commissioned officers and many of the privates were engaged at Balaclava, being Volunteers from other regiments to assist in training the present regiment.”

September 12th 1862

A great Volunteer _fête_, given at Crown Point, by the High Sheriff of Norfolk (Mr. Harvey), was attended by many thousands of spectators from all parts of the county. The city and county corps, in two brigades, commanded respectively by Lieut.-Col. Custance and Lieut.-Col. Astley, with the Norwich Light Horse, under Lieut. Hay Gurney, were reviewed by Major-General Sir Archdale Wilson, K.C.B. The Norwich Cadet Corps, recently organized by Mr. Noverre, and the Grammar School Cadet Corps, were also in attendance. After the review the troops were entertained at dinner, a balloon ascent was made by Mr. Simmons, and military and other sports followed.

September 17th 1862

The foundation-stone of a new church at Hautbois Magna was laid by Lord Suffield. The new building, which was designed to supplement the old parish church, was erected mainly by the exertions of the rector (the Rev. J. C. Girling), who gave the site. The cost was estimated at from £800 to £900. The church was consecrated by the Bishop of Norwich on May 26th, 1864.

October 6th 1862

Died at his house, Belitha Villas, Barnsbury Park, London, Mr. John Curtis, F.L.S., aged 72. Mr. Curtis was a native of Norwich, where he resided many years. He was author of the celebrated work, “British Entomology,” on the completion of which Sir Robert Peel awarded him a pension for life.

October 13th 1862

A ten miles race, between the Indian Deerfoot and Brighten, “the Norwich Milk Boy,” for a silver cup of the value of £30, took place on Figg’s Cricket Ground, Newmarket Road, Norwich. Previous performances of Brighten and Deerfoot had given rise to suspicion as to the genuineness of these contests, but on this occasion it was announced that “Deerfoot’s career in England being about to terminate,” the race would be a legitimate trial of speed. Brighten won by 30 yards, in 54 minutes, 30 sees.

October 17th 1862

A severe storm occurred at Yarmouth, and numerous shipping casualties were reported.

October 19th 1862

A fire took place on the premises of Messrs. Tillyard and Howlett, wholesale boot and shoe manufacturers, Water Lane, St. George’s Colegate, Norwich, and damage was done to the amount of £2000.

October 29th 1862

Died at St. Leonard’s-on-Sea, the Dowager Lady Stafford. Her ladyship was an American by birth, one of four daughters of Mr. C. Caton, of Baltimore. So remarkable were the sisters for their personal charms, that they were known as “the beauties of Baltimore,” a reputation which had the effect of securing for three of them British coronets, one as the Duchess of Leeds, another as the Marchioness Wellesley, and the third as the Baroness Stafford. She became the second wife of the 8th Lord Stafford in 1837.

November 10th 1862

Mr. Henry Staniforth Patteson was elected Mayor, and Mr. J. J. Colman appointed Sheriff of Norwich.

November 18th 1862

The Norwich Town Council adopted an address to the Queen, congratulating her Majesty upon the attainment of his majority by H.R.H. the Prince of Wales. The county magistrates adopted a similar address on January 8th, 1863.

November 19th 1862

Died, suddenly, aged 50, Mr. John Wodderspoon, sub-editor of the “Norwich Mercury.” He had resided in Norwich about fourteen years, and had previously been connected with the “Suffolk Chronicle,” at Ipswich. Mr. Wodderspoon devoted his leisure time to the pursuit of the fine arts, and had achieved considerable proficiency as an amateur artist, a talent which assisted him materially in his other favourite study, archæology. He was an active member of the Norfolk and Norwich Archæological Society, and whilst resident at Ipswich, wrote, “Memorials of Ipswich” and “Historic Sites of Suffolk.” His death occurred under painful circumstances. On the previous day a summons had been served upon him for threatening, it was alleged, a reporter on the “Mercury” staff. When giving instructions to Mr. Bugg, his solicitor in the case, Mr. Wodderspoon fell down and instantly expired.

November 22nd 1862

“The Queen has been pleased to grant unto Henry Evans, the elder, of Lyng and of Bylaugh, clerk, and to his eldest son, Henry Evans, the younger, of Elmswell, in Suffolk, clerk, her Royal licence and authority that they and their respective heirs may, in compliance with a proviso contained in the last will and testament of Sir John Lombe, late of Great Melton, baronet, deceased, respectively take and henceforth use the surname of Lombe only, and use and bear the arms of Lombe in lieu of their present surname and arms of Evans.”

December 1st 1862

Father Gavazzi lectured at St. Andrew’s Hall, Norwich, on “Italy, Victor Emanuel, Garibaldi, and the Pope,” and on the 2nd on “The Progress of the Gospel in Italy.”

December 10th 1862

Mr. Charles Mathews appeared at St. Andrew’s Hall, Norwich, in his entertainment, “Personal Reminiscences, in Eight Chapters.” The entertainment was repeated on December 13th.

December 13th 1862

Died at his residence, Elmsfield, Harrow, Lieut.-Col. Richard Montague Oakes, formerly of the 1st Life Guards, and Chief Constable of Norfolk, aged 71.

December 18th 1862

A gale of great severity commenced at Yarmouth, and continued until the 22nd. “The lifeboats were suffered to lie quiescent on the beach, their crews (of the Young and Diamond Company) standing stolidly by, indifferent even to the signals of distress which from time to time came over the raging waters from vessels in great danger.” There was no loss of life. An inquiry was opened on January 6th, 1863, as to the conduct of the lifeboat crew, and adjourned to the 12th, when a resolution was adopted exonerating them from blame.

December 20th 1862

Died at his residence, Norton Lodge, Freshwater, Isle of Wight, Admiral of the Fleet Sir Graham E. Hamond, Bart., G.C.B. He was the only son of Captain Sir Andrew Snape Hamond, R.N., created baronet in 1783, and was born December 30th, 1779. On the death of his father, at the advanced age of 90, in September, 1828, he succeeded to the baronetcy. He commenced his naval career in 1793, as midshipman in the Phaeton 38, under the command of his cousin, Sir A. S. Douglas; he then removed to the Queen Charlotte, 100, the flagship of Admiral Lord Howe, under whom he shared the honour and took part in the victory of “the glorious first of June.” Joining the Britannia, 100, the flagship of Admiral Hotham, he served in the Mediterranean, and witnessed the destruction of L’Alcide 74, taken in the action of July 13th. After constant active service on the Lisbon and home stations, during which he assisted at the capture of several French privateers and at the blockade of Malta and the siege of La Valette, he was appointed to the command of the Blanche, 36, in which ship he participated in the battle of Copenhagen. In 1804 he was appointed to the Lively, 38, in which frigate he captured, off Cape St. Mary, three Spanish frigates laden with treasure, and destroyed a fourth; during a subsequent cruise off Cape St. Vincent he captured the San Miguel, and the same day, in company with the Polyphemus, 64, took the Santa Gertruyda, 36, laden with a valuable cargo of 11,215,000 dollars in specie. In December, 1808, he was appointed to the command of the Victorious, 74, in which he assisted at the reduction of Flushing in 1809. He was appointed commander-in-chief of the South African station in September, 1834. Sir Graham was a magistrate and deputy lieutenant for the county of Norfolk.

December 21st 1862

The sea broke over the sandhills at Wells and flooded about 700 acres of the west marshes, which had been reclaimed from the ocean by the Earl of Leicester. The damage was estimated at £10,000.

December 26th 1862

The Christmas pantomime at Norwich Theatre, produced under the management of Mr. Sidney, was entitled “Jack the Giant-Killer.” Wombwell’s Menagerie was exhibited on the Castle Meadow.