To understand the following newpaper report you need to remember that John George Herrod is the missing husband of Jane’s sister Emma – who I introduced in a previous post:

From the Sheffield Daily Telegraph 14th August 1879:


   Yesterday, at the Southport Petty Sessions, a well-dressed young man named John George Herrod, alias Arthur Walton, was brought up in custody on the charge of stealing from the Shakespeare Hotel, Southport, in December last, three gold watches, three gold chains, one gold necklet attached to a gold locket, the property of the proprietress and her daughter, Mrs. and Miss Kershaw. To the chains were attached several gold pendants. The prisoner for sometime past has been residing in the town, and his general quiet and gentlemanly demeanour had given him access to rooms in several of the hotels which the public were not allowed to enter. During the hearing of the case it transpired that the prisoner belonged to Sheffield, that he was a joiner, and a married man with a family, the latter residing in Sheffield with their mother. He had been courting a young woman in Southport, and one of the watches he gave to her as a present, and thus the theft was brought home to him. This young woman having just given birth to a child the case could not be proceeded with, and the prisoner had nothing to say against a remand. He had circulated in the town the rumour that he had a income of about £6 a week. It is thought that other charges of hotel robberies in Southport will be brought against him.”

I don’t know if the Warburtons took the Sheffield Telegraph. But someone in Handsworth will have done, and no doubt arrived on their doorstep with a heavy heart and bad tidings. The family must have been in uproar that day.

Poor Emma.

Shef daily tel 14 08



4 thoughts on “Scandal threatens the Warburtons

  1. How awful for Emma. But in some way also a confirmation that being rid of him was the right thing. It may have helped gather some sympathy for her, though maybe she would have preferred everything to just quieten down so she could get on with her life.

    Interesting about the woman having just given birth. Do you think the child was John’s?


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