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- COMMERCIAL FRAUDS AT SUNDER.…

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A CURIOUS CASE DECIDED.

AWFUL EXPLOSION AT LIVERPOOL.

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AWFUL EXPLOSION AT LIVERPOOL. An appalling noise, accompanied by a shock which made the houses tremble, was heard at Liverpool on Friday evening last, at 7.20, and caused general alarm. It was not the roar of artillery, itwas a Convulsion more like the combination of an earthquake and. a distant thunder-clap, At least, so it appeared to residents in the upper part of the town. Lower down and near the Exchange the detonation and convulsion were most alarming. A few seconds after the shock, frightened people could be seen at every door en- deavouring to ascertain the cause of it; the gas in the streets had been mtinguLhed* and every corner had its knot of dismayed people inquiring what had happened. A person residing in Huskisson-street states that on going out he met a boy who calmly told him he supposed a ship which had been on fire in the river had blown up. Next he was informed that the house of the "British Merchant" in Bedford- strfefet had bfebh destroy by a gas explosion. Encountering an oysterman, he asked him, and was told that there had been an awful flash of lightning and clap of thunder, and that the electric fluid had played round the rim 01 his basket and frightened him very much. He then came to a ptllicerliiUi, siittouhdHd by a eager for information, but he was as ignorant as the inquirers. Proceeding towards town. he found the streets crowded with people. Passing St. Luke's Church, a gust of air smelling of gunpowder persuaded him that his first informant was cor- rect. Bold-street was thronged. Opposite Messrs. Urqu- hart's, whose plate-glaes windows had besn blown ID) was an anxious crowd, illl uhdbt the belief that an explosion of gtts had occurred. Again, at Gillham's (the bottom of Lord- street) the same scene was witnessed. Every person was asking his or her neighbour for information; but few, it any, seemed to have a correct idea of what had occurred. Every- where the arround was covered with fragments pf glass. The shofts by this time Were being again iighted Up, but the streets were in partial darkness, and it was somewhat diffi- cult to tread your way through the concourse of people. But now persons coming up from the landing-stage spread the news that the bark Lottie Sleigh, Captain Webber, had blown up in the river. This vessel, which belongs to Messrs. Hatton and Cookson, and bound for Africa, was taking in powder from the magasind boats off Tranmere, and had alffeady stowed away eleveh töns; when, about six p.m., as the steward was engaged in the cabin trimming the lamps with petroleum oil (and not paraffin, as it has been stated), some of it exploded and ignited the captain's bed curtains. Prompt measures were taken to suppress the flames, but they had already attained the mastery. The knowledge that so much gunpowder was on board, doubtless, to some extent, paralysed the exertions of the crew. At length. despairing of success, they gathered together whatever they could lay their hands on, ahd Wert! taken off by the passing Rock ferry-boat Wasp, and landed at the small stage. The magazine boat also cleared off. A dog was left on board, which howled dismally. By this time the flames had spread aH over the vessel, and the news was circulated on the pier heads that the vessel would soon blow up. Hundreds of persons awaited the event, not, however, without much trepidation. When the explosion did come off, the spectators were panic-stricken, and rushed frantically ott the stage and pier- heads. And yet the Lottie Sleigh was at least a mile distant. The night being dark, the explosion was all the more brilliant, the flames rising to a greatheight. In the glare could be seen the spars and fragments of the vessel upheaved. Suddenly darkness settled upon the scene, and nothing more could be observed from the shore. The force of the explosion may be imagined when we mention that bolts and fragments of the ship were hurled into Tran- mere; and it is even said that one of her knees was driven through the moulding-room of Mr. Clayton, shipbuilder. It is, however, a remarkable fact that at Bromborough and Estham, on the Cheshire side. ahd nearer the vessel, the ex- plosion was unnoticed. At Rock Ferry the shock was com- paratively slight. The residents at Fulwood-park, on the Lancashire side, nearly opposite Tranmere, remained igno- rant of what had happened. At Birkenhead the damage to glass was immense. Liverpool and its outskirts will afford work for many hundreds of glaziers for weeks to come. Perhaps Birkenhead suffered more severely from the ex- plosion than any other place. The houses in Hamilton-square had a great part of their windows blown in. At Gough's Hotel a great number of panes were broken. The windows of Mr. Rigby, wine and spirit merchant, nearly opposite, were blown out, along with the stock which was displayed in them. An iron bolt from the ship fell through the roof of a house in Sydney-street, and three children narrowly escaped injury. In North-street a long bar of iron also fell through a roof, occasioning some damage. Other fragments fell on the landing-stage and piers. The cabin windows of the Woodside ferry-steamer Cheshire were all broken. The glass roof to the landing- stage bridges was much injured. The windows of the Monks Ferry Hotel suffered very much. Tranmere, opposite which place the Lottie Sleigh was lying, did not suffer as much as might have been anticipated, although the destruction of glass was very considerable. A piece of the anchor-stock of the vessel is said to have fallen on board the Tranmere ferry- boat Birkenhead, doing very slight damage. At Seacombe, Egremont, and along the Cheshire shore to the mouth of the river many windows were broken. On the Lancashire side perhaps Messrs. Urquhart's pre- mises, in Bold-street, suffered most. Four large plate-glass panes, valued at 601, fell into the street, wounding, it is said, a woman who was passing. Messrs. Shellard and Hodg- son's large windows also suffered, as did those of Messrs. Anderson. In Lord-street, Messrs. Livingston had their windows shattered, as had Messrs. Gillham, and Mr. Wood, hatter. Mr. Dempster's shop, in Castle-street, had three' large panes smashed. Mf. George Eastee, in the Crescent, had his shop front entirely demolished. Some of the large plate-glass-windows in the&changc news-rooms were blown in, one piece of glass falling into the room. In Berry- street and Great George-street the shock was severely felt, and much damage done. The Custom-house had all the glass in the south front broken. It would, however, re- quire several columns to particularise the premises which suffered from the explosion. The altar window of St. George's Church was cracked. From the north, south, east, and west portions of the town accounts have been received of serious damage. Fortunately, few, if any, cases of per- sonal injury were sustained. At the Southern hospital, which was crowded with pa- tients, the panic was excessive: even men with broken legs rushed into the street. A man, who was stabbed on Christ- mas-day by a Malay, and whose comrade died from a- similar injury, rushed out and failed to reappear, He was recovering from two severe wounds in the back. Fortunately his room was of more use than his company, as a man with a shattered leg, who otherwise would have had to be refused admittance, was placed in the vacant bed. At the Northern hospital, so intense was the excitement, that a number of the patients, some of whom had not been out of bed for weeks previously, suddenly got up and left the wards to ascertain what was the cause of the concussion. It is seated that the insurance offices are not liable for the damage to property under the terms of their policies. On Saturday, however, the directors of the Royal Insurance Company came to the determination of making good the loss suffered by their insurers. It was reported on Saturday, but very probably the re- port is incorrect, that a solicitor in Liverpool had been instructed by some of the sufferers by the explosion to proceed agamsttheowners of the vessel. Soon after the explosion had occurred, numerous vehicles from the suburbs came into town, occupied by country residents, anxious to know what had occurred, so that the streets were thronged up to-a late hour with sensation hunters. So far as is known, the only living thing, sacrificed by the explosion was the dog belonging to the Lotty Sleigh. The tail and hind legs of the dog were found on Monday at Monk's Ferry. The total amount of damage is estimated to be from ten to twenty thousand pounds. A gentleman, writing from Blockloy, Worcester- shire, says:— The explosion at Liverpool was distinctly heard at this place, which is 100 miles distant. Persona in their houses heard the doors, fire-irons, and crockery rattle. The ringers heard and felt the tower shake. Persons out of doors heard a dull, heavy, distant report, some say thrice repeated rapidly. The time, according to our country clocks, was 7.30 p.m. An unusually dark morning followed, with every appearance of a heavy downfall of rain.

WHAT IT IS COMING TO.

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I A JACOBITE RHYME REVIVED.