Painless amputation;  prolific apple trees, very useful ducks,  and more

1846 – A Very Useful Duck

Mr. Sandford, a Tailor of Yarkhill, had a duck that laid two eggs every day for eight days, and then on the ninth day produced three.

1846 – The Inevitable Death of a Child from Fire

Here it is, every village had several.  So so sad.

An 8 year old girl called Mary Ann Stallard was left at home whilst her parents went out to work.

Mary Ann became hungry and tried to reach some peas which were in a pot over the fire;  her clothes were caught by the flames and she was completely enveloped in fire.

Once found, she was taken to the Infirmary but she died after suffering 9 hideous days of agony.

1847 – Amputation Without Pain!

At this time in history, anaesthetics were a very modern invention and were being used with caution, therefore the following was worthy of headline news!

Charles Bufton, a Yarkhill man, suffered from a severe attack of rheumatic fever, which finally settled in his ankle and produced extensive disease of the bones.  Initially, attempts were made to cure this but they were unsuccessful;  the pain became so severe that it threatened the very life of poor Charles.  The only option was to amputate the limb.

The Apparatus for Administering Ether

This was described as ingenious, and was made by Mr. Bullock of the Infirmary.  It consisted of a small flat wooden box, with a glass stoppered opening to pour in the ether;  a bladder of air to dilute it, and an elastic tube with a mouthpiece to breathe from.

The Amputation

On 9th April 1847, a medical team assembled at Hereford Infirmary and Charles was brought into the room……..he was emaciated – haggard from enduring endless pain.

They had barely plonked him on the table before he began begging for the ether, which being ready, was given to him.  After about a minute of breathing it in, he became unconscious, and the surgeon, Mr. Cam removed the limb then stitched the wound just as Charles began to come round.

It was remarked on with wonder, that Charles had not uttered a sound throughout the operation, and on waking he said that he felt no pain and did not know that his leg had been removed.

The Recovery

A week later, not only were there no problems with the wound, but Charles was rapidly gaining weight and getting more sleep than he had had in months.

He was cheerful and happily recommending ether to anyone who would listen.

The stump was free from pain or inflamation, and was healing really well.

1848 – Child Drowns at Yarkhill

Henry Dutson, a child of just 4 and the son of Elizabeth Dutson, was sent out to play with the neighbour’s children.  He returned to eat early afternoon, then went back out.

Elizabeth was alerted by a lad who knocked on the door, who said that whilst gathering watercress he had found a child in the canal.  She hurried to the scene, and found to her horror that it was Henry.

Nobody seemed to know how he got there, and the verdict was “found drowned”.

1857 – Prolific Apple Tree at Yarkhill

An apple tree growing on land in the occupation of Mr. Deem of Yarkhill, yielded 44 bushels of good fruit in 1857.

1860 – Woman in Labour dies at Yarkhill

In September 1860, Alice Anne Badham aged 29, the wife of a labourer in Yarkhill, went into labour.

After a while, the pains eased off but a few hours later she vomited nearly three pints of blood, and then died shortly afterwards.

Several times she was asked if she wanted a doctor, but each time she refused, however the jury at the inquest (no doubt peering, frowning, over their glasses) said that “it is much to be regretted that her friends and family did not procure medical assistance”.

The verdict was Death in unsuccessful attempts in labour.