Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Peter Caldwell

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Ironfounder, of Caldwell, Parker and Co, Warrington

1846 'RUNCORN. Inquest.— On Saturday last, an inquest was held on view of the body Job Eaton, at Mr. R. Mounfield’s, the Bridgewater Arms, before Henry Chorton, Esq., coroner. The ill-fated youth discharged a small cannon at the works of Messrs. W. Hayes and Co., of which firm John Johnson, Esq., was a partner, and it was in celebration of the marriage of this gentlemn that the gun was loaded. George Howard deposed, that he was employed by Messrs. W. Hayes and Co. ; that the previous Tuesday he had, after taking all due precautions with regard to the cleaning of the gun and produced in court the rod, with the tow attached, on which no appearance of rust or soil attached — loaded it with two ounces and a half of powder. It was his intention to have fired it himself; but, at the urgent request of the deceased, after one refusal, he consented to his applying the match. The gun burst, and portions of the fragments struck the deceased, carrying off the back part of the skull, and scatteiing the brains on the roof and walls. The deceased died instantaneously. Parts of the fragments of the gun were produced. Mr. P. Caldwell, one of the jurymen, of the firm of Caldwell, Parker and Co., iron founders, observed that the gun had been cast from had metal, had never been bored, and that the greatest precaution could not have prevented the accident. Verdict, accidentally killed.'[1]

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Sources of Information

  1. Liverpool Mail - Saturday 12 December 1846