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NEW ZEALAND DISASTERS AND TRAGEDIES
RIVER DROWNINGS
INQUEST ON JOHN HAYNES
06 DECEMBER 1868

Thanks to John Wilson for this;

INQUEST J 68/3657 held on Monday 7 Dec 1868 at house of James Osgood known as Whitewood's Hotel; coroner (Dr) I G F Wilford. Jury verdict: "That the deceased John Haynes was accidentally drowned on Sunday, December 6th 1868 whilst attempting to cross the second river at the Waiwetu, Hutt."

An Inquisition ... upon the oaths of Henry Sanson, Foreman, David Hastings, Elisha H. Mander, George Withell, Frances Lissington, William Phyn, James A'Court, Charles England, John Cudley, Shadrack Parker, Edward Vaughan, Samuel Sanson, and George Hobbs, good and lawful men of the said District... do say upon their Oath "That the deceased John Haynes was accidentally drowned on Sunday, December 6th 1868 whilst attempting to cross the second river at the Waiwetu, Hutt."

William Firth being sworn, saith that the deceased John Haynes came into Whitewoods Hotel about ten o'clock on Sunday morning December 6th. He asked for a glass of brandy with which I supplied him. I am barman at Whitewoods, after a short time he applied for another glass which I gave him; at about a quarter past eleven I let him out by the back door, he wanted to go out by the back door. He was not in the house more than an hour and a quarter, the deceased only had two glasses of brandy in the house, with both of which I supplied him. Nobody else but myself was behind the bar during the time he was in the house. When the deceased left the house he was not drunk nor yet quite sober. I consider he was able to take care of himself. He could walk very well. This is all I saw of the deceased till he was brought by the constable in the evening dead. By the coroner} A man named Thomas Davis and a woman named Mrs Poad were in the company of deceased while in Whitewoods. I am quite sure the deceased only had two glasses of brandy whilst in Whitewood's Hotel. I have been barman at the Hotel for two weeks; during that time I have been in the habit of selling drinks on Sunday morning to regular customers but not to every-one. The constable was not present when any of the drink was served to the deceased. The constable was present when the woman Poad was turned out, he requested me to put her out. The deceased left here about a quarter past eleven, he did not return. By a juror} The deceased appeared quite sober when he entered the house. The deceased was well known to me as a frequenter of the hotel, he sometimes took more than two glasses. I have seen him worse for liquor than he was on Sunday morning. The deceased was alone when he came to the Hotel. The deceased left by the back door some five or ten minutes before the man Davis and the woman Poad. The woman went out by the front door, the man sometimes afterward. I have been in the public business in Wellington for the last thirteen years. I have always (?) been in the habit of serving customers on a Sunday morning provided they were quiet and orderly. I have always never been refused a glass of drink on a Sunday morning in any house.The deceased was here either on Saturday or Friday but he did not take any drink home with him on that occasion.

Henry Lear being sworn saith that on Sunday night December 6th two little boys sons of the deceased came on Sunday night between seven and eight o-clock to ask if he had seen their father. They said they had been round the different public houses. He went along the creek behind his house where the deceased was in the habit of crossing and found him, quite dead, on his right side in about two and a half feet of water half covered with water cress. He appeared to have slipped from a log across the creek.

Robert Ralph said he was went into Whitewood's Hotel with Daniel Peck was with me at the time. The deceased asked Daniel Peck to "shout", who at the deceased's request "shouted" him a glass of brandy. He said the deceased rolled somewhat passing his house, but "it might be the rough stones that are thereabouts".

James Brady being sworn saith that from information I received between seven and eight o'clock on Sunday Dec 6th I proceeded with two men to help me to a creek at the back of the house of last witness, there I found the body of deceased lying on (?) a log. I had it removed to the Whitewood's Hotel. On searching deceased I found a watch & chain and a pocket-knife The watch was stopped at twenty-seven minutes past four. It was dark when I got to the place where the body was. James Brady

All the above information were severally taken and acknowledged on the day and year and place ...??... before me. I.G.F. Wilford Coroner


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