Jump to content
Gentleman's Military Interest Club

Alan Baird

Bronze Membership
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About Alan Baird

  • Rank

Profile Information

  • Location
    Melrose Scottish Borders

Recent Profile Visitors

937 profile views
  1. This is a late addition to Police Sergeant Hezekiah Cook, collar number 32H......the collar number is an important piece of information that will become evident shortly. Police Sergeant 32H Hezekiah Cook was responsible for ''Common Lodging Houses'' in Whitechapel during the Jack the Ripper murders of 1888. I was attempting to find out what his duties were when I came across this article. It is dated the 13th of October in 1888 which is right in the JTR period. Basically it states :- This article relates to a robbery which you can read from the attached photographs. P.S. 32H [Hezekiah Cook] and an Inspector were responsible for the Inspections etc of the registered Common Lodging Houses within the Whitechapel or 'H' division's area. There were 127 common lodging houses in Whitechapel in 1888 and they accommodated about 6,000 persons. They were all visited, once a week, on average. He doubted if a single registered lodging house would be found without thieves and prostitutes among its lodgers. Obviously this was common knowledge regarding the criminals and low classes that resided in these lodging houses. This article was copied and covered in many newspapers, all over the country and the story came from the Worship-street Police Court. [Magistrate Montagu Williams] [The regulations covering common lodging houses were transferred from the Police in 1894 to the London County Council.] 10/10/1888 The famous Henrietta Barnett [author and social reformer], wife of the Reverent Samuel Barnett, St Jude's Church, collected a petition to give to Queen Victoria. Henrietta collected 4,000 names from the ''women of Whitechapel'' begging the Queen to have the Common Lodging Houses closed down in Whitechapel. [Many people felt that these establishments were responsible for the decline in human standards. 22/11/1888. Now we go to the House of Commons. Mr Howell asked the Home Secretary Mr Matthews whether his attention had been called to the remarks of the Metropolitan Magistrate, Mr Montagu Williams, at Worship-street Police Court, on Monday last - namely, ''that the whole crime of the district is due to registered lodging houses...…..which are made the homes of the men who perpetrate robberies and of the words of the policemen, whom he quotes said,' they were the resort of notorious characters.' I am not saying Police Sergeant Hezekiah Cook was the Policeman the Magistrate was quoting, I am just pointing out that being the district Police Sergeant in Whitechapel inspecting the Common Lodging Houses...…. was a highly controversial subject especially in 1888. Alan.
  2. Hi Tony, I am hoping that is exactly what the family will do but I am going to leave it at that. If they do managed to get additional information I am sure they will post it on ancestry and I will find it there. At least the younger members of the family are aware of his famous naval service. thanks, Alan.
  3. Before I start I just wanted to say the presentation, research and the stories themselves, of the first two posts, was excellent. This is ''Police Constable Jesse Barlow - I guarded Queen Victoria. Jesse Barlow was born in Corsley, in Warminster, in Wiltshire, on the 30th of March in 1865. He joined the Metropolitan Police on the 20th of July in 1885 and was assigned to Whitehall or 'A' division. [Warrant number 70890/collar number 324A] On the 22nd of August in 1910, Police Constable Jesse Barlow retired on pension from the Metropolitan Police and Whitehall or 'A' division. Jesse Barlow retired to Yew Cottage, Bottlesford, in Pewsey, in Wiltshire. Police Constable Jesse Barlow was awarded the following medals :- [a] Queen Victoria Metropolitan Police Jubilee medal for 1887. Queen Victoria Metropolitan Police Jubilee Clasp for 1897. [c] Queen Victoria Jubilee medal in bronze for 1897 and only 890 of these medals were awarded and awarded to specially selected individuals. [d] Metropolitan Police Coronation medal for 1902. A collector/research who realised the rarity of the Queen Victoria medal in bronze for 1897 began the process of discovering the hidden story. This research took place between 1979 to 1981. What made Police Constable Jesse Barlow's story especially interesting was the ''family history'' that was recorded. Summary of the family history, ''Police Constable Jesse Barlow was attached to Windsor Castle and accompanied Queen Victoria and the Royal Party to Osbourne House and Balmoral Castle on many occasions. He received gifts from Queen Victoria and Tzar Nicholas II and had been introduced to the German Emperor. Police Constable Jesse Barlow participated in Queen Victoria's funeral.'' The more we can confirm and evidence the family history, then this gives greater creditability to the whole family history story. We Know that Police Constable Jesse Barlow sometime between the last quarter of 1887 and the beginning of 1891 was assigned to Special Duties with the Windsor Castle Precinct. It was stated there were 5 Police Constable allocated to this duty. In the England Census of 1891, the records show that Police Constable Jesse Barlow and two of his colleagues were residing at the Police Lodge, on the Isle of Wight, as Queen Victoria was in residence at Osbourne House. One of the stories that may give some insight into what things were like at the Royal Households, is that when Princess Ena [later to become Queen of Spain] was a little girl she would sometimes give her hoop and other outdoor toys to Police Constable Jesse Barlow to look after them. I would suspect this is more likely to have occurred at Osbourne House in the summer months. In 1893, Jesse Barlow marries Janet May Best in Windsor, in Berkshire and it was stated that Queen Victoria gave them a beautiful Irish linen tablecloth as a wedding present. Queen Victoria was well known for her generosity for giving gifts especially at Christmas. One of Police Constable Jesse Barlow's most precious possessions was a silver mounted and engraved walking stick which was given to him by Queen Victoria. Police Constable Jesse Barlow also owned a silver watch and chain which was decorated with an eagle. It is documented that Tzar Nicholas II visited Queen Victoria at Balmoral Castle in 1896. It is also recorded that he gave the local Police Sergeant a diamond ring and that every on-duty Policeman received a silver watch and chain that was engraved with the Russian Eagle. In the England Census of 1901, Police Constable Jesse Barlow and his wife and three children are residing in the family home in Springfield Road, in Clewer, in Berkshire. Police Constable Jesse Barlow is still stationed at Windsor Castle and he has already served Queen Victoria for over a decade. A photograph was provided by the family showing Police Constable Jesse Barlow in his Metropolitan Police uniform and wearing his medals and standing with some other unidentified Police Constables. We can date the photograph to between the end of 1897 and the beginning of 1902 because of the medals he is wearing. The photograph was probably taken at either Osbourne House, Windsor Castle or Balmoral Castle so I think the unidentified Police Constables might belong to either Hampshire, Berkshire or Aberdeenshire Constabulary but I am not sure about that. At 6.30pm on the 22nd of January in 1901, Queen Victoria died at Osbourne House, on the Isle of Wight. On the 23rd and 24th of January hundreds of staff, servants and estate workers were allowed to pay their last respects, as they filed past Queen Victoria's coffin. It is almost certain the Police Constable Jesse Barlow would have been one of them and this is also the period when he would have been met the Germany Kaiser who attended Osbourne House. The first phase of Queen Victoria's funeral journey to Windsor Castle was from Osbourne House to the pier on the Isle of Wight. Police Constable Jesse Barlow's family history states he was part of this historic procession. When studying the photographs, film still and films of this famous event, it become quite clear, that there was a Metropolitan Police presence which was located adjacent to the Royal Princess's party. It consisted of one Metropolitan Police Sergeant and three Police Constables on each side of the column and as previously said they were adjacent to the black clad Princess's and other senior female members of the party. It took me approximately 6-12 months of luck/research to identify Police Constable Jesse Barlow as being part of the above Metropolitan Police delegation as can be evidenced by the attached photograph. Alan. Police Constable Jesse Barlow. I forgot to mention that after he retired from the Metropolitan Police and a few years later...….. his eldest son who was 18 years old, 21017 Private Herbert James Barlow of the 5th Battalion of the Wiltshire Regiment was killed at the Battle of Bait Isa, in Mesopotamia in 1916 and that his medals also remain with the family group. Alan.
  4. Hi Dave and thanks, Does that mean I should go onto the new thread, then 'share this post,' adding in the PC881 details so that it then comes up on my post on the new thread? Maybe I should cut and paste but I think I will leave it for now. thank you again, Alan.
  5. Hi, To transfer a post.....top right hand symbol 'share a post' and then add in Hi, Unfortunately I am not sure how to repost the posts.....would you for example go into post 15 and use the ''share this post'' and then use the tales-from-the-station-cat/ heading and then use then tap on the google symbol or something like that. Alan.
  6. Hi Dave, I think you will like the story, I just hope I can summarise it so that I do it justice. The only reason this story is available today is due to a researcher …..researching the story in 1979-1981 and the real breakthrough when he found and contacted the family where he got the family history of this Police Constable. It was from there the full picture came out but I will need to write it up over the week-end. Alan.
  7. That is fine with me and I have a story that I could add, if you wanted, regarding a ''Metropolitan Police Constable that guarded Queen Victoria.'' and of course it is fully evidenced. Just let me know if you are interested and how or what to do, remember that I am new to the club. regards, Alan.
  8. The first story in 1888 I have known about for many years but the second story in 1892 I only discovered in the last few months. It is more impressive than the photograph shows.
  9. Hi, Metropolitan Police Sergeant Hezekiah Cook was serving in Whitehapel or 'H' division at the same time as Police Constable 881 Edward Watkins was serving with the City of London Police in 1888 and both men, like so many others, were hunting for Jack the Ripper. Police Sergeant Hezekiah Cook served from 1865 to 1892 and this included serving as a Police Sergeant in Whitechapel or 'H' division from 28/4/1883 to 15/2/1892 when he retired from the Metropolitan Police. [Retired as a Police Sergeant/collar number was 32H. The Star Newspaper article on the 15th of October in 1888 stated :- ''It was reported that in a lodging-house in Brick-Lane, in Whitechapel, some of the residents became suspicious and concerned by the behaviour of somebody staying at the lodging-house. They informed the Police of their concerns and Sergeant Cook and some other officers arrested the individual. The prisoner was taken to Commercial Street Police Station but within half an hour the prisoner was able to convince the authorities he was not the man they were looking for. The hunt for Jack the Ripper continues.'' The Inquest on the human remains discovered in Spitalfield, in early October in 1892. The Inquest was held at the Town Hall, Old Street, in Shoreditch into the circumstances of the human remains that were found in Flower and Dean Street, in Spitalfield. There were 7 whole skeletons found at this location. Hezekiah Cook of 1 Princes Street, Spitalfield gave evidence at the Inquest, as he had previously been a Whitechapel division inspector of common lodging-houses. Hezekiah Cook confirmed that a lodging-house had been operating on the site and he was obviously requested to attend the Inquest on behalf of the Metropolitan Police, even although he was now retired. The two separate stories confirm his role within Whitechapel or 'H' division, as being an expert on the lodging-houses, within the divisions area. This might have been an interesting role to be in, during the Jack the Ripper reign of terror. The medal never possessed a good patina but tarnish/dirt effected the engraving on the rim and therefore it became necessary for the medal to be cleaned. I will add some photographs on shortly, as I had forgot to reduce their size. I will do it on the next reply.
  10. ''The Shooting of Police Constable George Harrington.'' To set the scene :- In the early hours of the 3d of February in 1900, word came to the Police Station of a burglary in the area and officers were dispatched to investigate the incident. Snow had fallen, brightening the usually dark early winter morning [5.20am], on this particular day. Footprints of 3 people passing into the grounds of a large house were found and Police Constable George Harrington [393P] and Police Constable George Parker [160P] proceeded to follow them. Suddenly they came upon the 3 suspects from approximately 15 yards away and Gustavo Franci [18], Ernest Reuter [19] and Frederick Braun [20] all drew their revolvers and opened fire. Two of suspects then ran away but Gustavo Franci ran towards Police Constable George Harrington firing twice and the second bullet struck the Police Constable in the thigh. George Harrington cried out that he had been shot in the leg, he was in great pain, the shock took away the use of his leg and he was dazed and said that he could not see for a minute. Police Constable George Parker ran after Gustavo Franci who then fired one or two rounds at Police Constable George Parker, one of which struck the officers helmet. Police Constable George Parker used his truncheon to down and disarm and arrest Gustavo Franci. Police Constable William Read [38PR], Police Constable Harry Easter [592P] and Police Constable Frederick Dyer [38P] armed only with their truncheons and already knowing one of their colleagues had been wounded and multiple shots had been fired , continued after the two suspects that had run off. These officers were responsible for disarming and capturing of the two suspects and later it was confirmed all three suspects were in possession of fully loaded revolvers. The Divisional Police Surgeon examined Police Constable George Harrington at approximately 6.45am at the station and it was found the bullet had caused a severe contusion on the left thigh but had not broken the skin and he was suffering from shock. The Police Constable was told to go to bed and remain off work for at least 12 days. Police Constable George Harrington was probably saved from a more severe injury by his wet and heavy police overcoat and the other garments beneath it, that helped him to keep out the winter weather and reduced the power of the bullet that struck him. At the Old Bailey trial the suspects were found guilty of shooting with the intent to do grievous bodily harm and to avoid lawful arrest. All the officer's were, ''highly complimented on their conduct'' by the Judge and were very brave in tackling 3 dangerous and armed criminals who had no hesitation in firing at the Police. N.B. That in Police Constable George Harrington's pension records, it records he was off work for 65 days due to this injury so we can guess it was more complicated injury than first appeared. Police Constable George Harrington's medals. Alan.
  11. Hi Mike, Glad you like the story. It would be appalling to suffer such injuries in todays life but it is hard to imagine what it must have been like for Police Constable Alfred Brace in 1894. Months of horrendous pain and with the loss of so many teeth his mouth area would have partially collapsed, his speech would be different, he would have difficulties eating and there is always the danger of infections. Imagine the scene at Peckham Police Station when he was brought in and the anger from the other Constables etc at what had been done to their friend and colleague. The sight of Police Constable Alfred Brace with his injuries, severe bleeding, in pain and in shock, must have been awful to witness. Alan.
  12. Hi, Sometimes it is the small story that gets lost with time, that can be the most poignant. At approximately 10.30pm on Saturday the 20th of October in 1894, Police Constable Alfred Brace [176P] was in Commercial Road, in Peckham. A group of 4 to 5 men were causing a disturbance and when Police Constable Alfred Brace gave them a warning about their behaviour, Daniel Neil [21] a labourer, struck the Police Constable in the side of the face. Police Constable Alfred Brace arrested the individual and Police Constable Richard Vosper came to his assistance in taking the prisoner back to the Peckham Police Station. When they had travelled approximately 500 yards from where the original incident had taken place, Henry Neil [26] a labourer and the brother to Daniel Neil and who was one of the original group of men causing the disturbance, attacked the two Police Constables with an iron bar. Henry Neil struck Police Constable Richard Vosper with the iron bar across the back of his head knocking his helmet off and he then struck Police Constable Alfred Brace in the face with the same weapon. Police Constable Alfred Brace was hit so hard in the mouth that he lost 17 teeth, his lips were split right through and he also lost part of his gum. Even although he was badly injured and in great pain and was suffering from shock, Police Constable Alfred Brace continued to keep hold of Daniel Neil and Police Constable Robert Vosper managed to detain Henry Neil. Other officers and a member of the public came to their assistance and also helped to get Police Constable Alfred Brace back to Peckham Police Station where Doctor Esher the Police Surgeon attended to the Constables wounds. The doctor testified that Police Constable Alfred Brace was in considerable pain and had extensive damage to his mouth area. Henry Neil was found guilty of the vicious attack on Police Constable Alfred Brace and was sentenced to 7 years penal servitude and Daniel Neil was sentenced to 6 months hard labour. Mr Justice Hawkins expressed his admiration for the remarkable bravery of Police Constable Alfred Brace and for his good discretion and good temper. Both the Grand Jury and the Pettit Jury also made similar commendations. [Lisburn Herald 27/10/1894 and the Old Bailey trial records.] [Although this has nothing to do with Police Constable 881 Edward Watkins, it does give you an insight into the bravery of Victorian Police. Whether they be Metropolitan Police or City of London Police.] See below Police Constable Richard Vosper's Metropolitan Police medals.
  13. Hi Simon, Thank you for your comments. Some of these medals which I have collected over the years, were specifically collected because they had really interesting stories to them and I have never shared these stories. Maybe it is time to share that history. regards, Alan. I forgot to add this photograph of Police Constable 661 George Sims engraved medal details. My camera is not the greatest at close-quarters photography but I have added it anyway. Alan.
  14. ''Evidence the Evidence.'' The following photographs relates to Police Constable 661 George James Sims of the City of London Police and his City of London Police Jubilee medal of 1887. He joined on the 15th of March in 1866 and retired on pension on the 31st of January in 1895. We know his City of London Police Jubilee medal of 1887 is original because :- [a] The Records. [City of London Police, Census records etc.] The Physical Properties. [The details/style/engraving, the weight etc.] [c] The Family Connection. [Items relate to his daughters.] Because we have excellent evidence on PC 661 George James Sims, even the most ordinary and basic details become more important. For example the medal ribbon bar pin which is located at the top of the ribbon, we can confirm it is both original and contemporary and I have seen other examples of this same ribbon bar on such medals. Therefore when we examine PC 661 George James Sims medal with PC 881 Edward Watkins medal we can evidence they are both original and contemporary. This is just one little point about the importance of such evidence. Alan.
  15. Hi Mike, The quote I like best is, ''Elementary, my dear Watson,'' because I believe Conan Doyle never actually used this phrase in any of his stories. Alan.