Denaby Man Charged With Bigamy – Committed Assizes – ‘Well, It’s There; I’ve Done It!’

June 1906

Mexborough & Swinton Times, June 23, 1906

Denaby Man Charged With Bigamy.
Committed To The Assizes.
‘Well, It’s There; I’ve Done It!’

At the Doncaster West Riding Court, on Tuesday the serious charge of bigamy against Henry Whitehead, barber, Denaby, was heard.

Mr. J. W. Huntries presided, Mr. J. Cocking, and Mr. F. W. Dymond, Mr. Frank Allen appeared for the defence.

Joseph Barnes, boot finisher, residing at Sowerby Bridge, said he knew prisoner. On the 25th December, 1899, he went through the form of marriage with his daughter, Isabella. She was at the time a spinster, and was 22 years of age. She was then residing with witness. The marriage took place at the Baptist School Chapel, Industrial Road, Sowerby, the ceremony being performed by the minister, the Rev. John Fox, in witness’s presence, and in the presence of Emma Rotherham, both of whom signed the register. The prisoner had stated he was 25 years of age, and was a bachelor. At the time of marriage prisoner was carrying on business as a barber at Sowerby, having lodged at witness’s house for two or three weeks. The other witness to the marriage had since left Sowerby. After the marriage they had lived at the house of witness for about nine months. Prisoner had not succeeded in business, and had left the district, presumably to seek work, the wife remaining with witness. Prisoner left the district about September, 1900. Occasionally prisoner had come over to see his wife. The last time he came was in Aug., 1901. He had not seen prisoner from that time until the present.

Cross-examined by Mr. Allen, witness said his daughter had lived with prisoner since 1901. Prisoner was unfortunate in business at Sowerby. He did not know that prisoner had asked his daughter to join him.

Alice Bryars, living at Don View, Mexboro’, said the prisoner had gone through the form of marriage with her on December 26, 1904, at the Parish Church, Denaby, the ceremony being performed by the Vicar, the Re. J. Brookes. There were two witnesses present, and had signed the register. At the time of this marriage she was a widow. They had resided in Doncaster Road, Denaby, the prisoner having described himself as a bachelor. She had known the prisoner as Henry Whitehead, and he had carried on the business of hairdresser at Denaby. After the marriage they had, for a few weeks, lived with he parents at Doncaster Road, Denaby, afterwards moving into a home of their own at Mexboro’. They had lived together until the time of prisoner’s apprehension. She had lived with he parents about 4 months previous to the marriage. She did not know prisoner was a married man.

Cross-examined, witness said they had lived very happily together. Prisoner was a hard-working man, and had done his best to make an honest living. Arthur Hough, miner, Braithwell Street, Denaby, said he was present at the marriage of Henry Whitehead and the previous witness, which took place at the Parish Church, Denaby, on 26th December, 1904. The banns had been published. Prisoner had described himself as a bachelor. He, with Sarah Ann Wellings, had signed the register as witnesses to the marriage. He recognised Hy. Whitehead as the prisoner.

Sarah Ann Wellings, married woman, residing at Doncaster Road, Denaby, said she was a witness to the marriage of prisoner and Alice Bryars. She corroborated the statement of the previous witness.

P.c. Glithro, of Denaby, at 12-50 p.m., on 15th June, had apprehended the prisoner, Harry Whitehead, on a warrant. The apprehension took place in prisoner’s shop at Denaby. The warrant had been issued on the information of his wife, Isabella. He had said: ‘Well, it’s there; I’ve done it, I’m sorry, but she wouldn’t live with me.’ Prisoner was then locked up at the Conisbro’ Police-station.

Prisoner was committed to take his trial at the Assizes, and bail was granted, the amount being £10, with sureties of £5 each.