Thursday, 4 March 2010

Letter to the Editor of the Birmingham Journal 23 June 1853

I am currently researching the Birmingham Prison Scandal of 1853 and spent last Friday and Saturday looking through the Birmingham Journal of that year.  I came across this letter to the editor
Sir, Will you allow me, through the medium of your columns, to ask for the presence of the police at the upper end of Bath Street, at the hours of twelve noon and four pm. At these hours the children attending St Mary's Schools, Bath Street, and St. Chad's Catholic School, Shadwell Street, are let loose; and it has been their custom since the vacation to meet, to the number of thirty or upwards from each school, and attack each other with brickbats and stones.  The affair has to-day, on both occasions, assumed a very serious aspect, and if not speedily suppressed may necessitate an inquest, as the combatants are not at all particular as to the size of the missiles, and are evidently bent on doing each other mischief.
I am, sir, yours obediently,
William Parkes,
7 Bath Street,
But at least they didn't have any anti-social behaviour!!

If and when I have time I will go back and pull together a selection of the court reports and write something comparing them to those published today.

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