Micklebring Infant’s Death – Parents Censured

September 1917

Mexborough times, Saturday, September 22, 1917

Micklebring infant´s death

A Micklebring coroner’s jury resumed the enquiry into the death of a little two-month-old child, the son of Harold Barrow, miner of Braithwell view, employed at the Yorkshire main colliery, at the Plough Inn on Friday night.

The inquest was adjourned three weeks previous in order that additional evidence might be called, the allegations being that the father of the child had neglected to provide sufficient food for the wife and child.

The coroner now stated that he had received a letter from a tradesman who had supplied the family groceries stating that he was astonished to hear the child was dead and the provided the family for three months including two weeks after the child was born. As a matter of fact, said the coroner, the child was then all right.

The district nurse from Doncaster had also been interviewed and she said that when she saw the child on 21st of June, it was healthy, and weighed nine pounds which was two pounds above the average. On 16 to July it weighed nine pounds having only game after found itself 14 ounces. She told the mother it was not been properly fed and advise new milk. She did not see it again.

Nurse Emma.Mummery, a certified midwife, so the mother every day for 10 days. She advised Barrow what to get for his wife. The mother complained frequently about not having sufficient food. A small girl was looking after her. The father use bad language about the hours being dirty.

Florence White (14) of Thomson Avenue new Edlington said she went to help at Barrows on June 12. Two days later Mrs Barrow was confined. She stayed 11 days. She left because there was not sufficient to eat.

Barrow: she is lying

Witness: it is not a lie. Continuing, she said that food was sent in by some of the neighbours.

The father, interrupting alleged that the girl had wasted a lot of food and if the food controller had visited the house he would have summoned them.

Witness replied that there was nothing to waste.

Mary Jane Pawson, wife of a farmer who supplied the family with new milk for a time said at the time the child was born they had a quart a day and one penny old milk for about two months. They then had separated milk.

Mrs Barrow said she favoured the child at the breast for 10 days and then on page and food and new milk. She also got some dried milk.

Summing up the coroner reminded the jury that the parents, particular the father, were held responsible by law for the care of his infant children. There was no doubt that had been neglect. The child died of starvation, lack of proper nourishment and they had to consider who was responsible for that neglect. They had heard the house was very dirty and the domestic conditions were very unsatisfactory.

After consulting in private, the jury returned a verdict that the child had died from starvation caused by the lack King proper nourishment result of neglect on the part of the parents. They desired them to be censored severely.

Addressing the parents and speaking to the man first the coroner said the jury considered he was seriously to blame, and the court to consider himself exceedingly fortunate he was not sent to trial on a charge of manslaughter. Addressing the wise the coroner said although her husband had not dealt properly by her there was no reason why the child should have starved. Whe jury could not a quitter of blame and he hoped both of them would take the proceedings as a warning.

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