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FATAL BOAT ACCIDENT AT CHESTER.

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FATAL BOAT ACCIDENT AT CHESTER. About two o'clock on Saturday, a party of excur- sionists who had come to Chester by the Primitive Methodist school trip from Ashton-under-Lyne, hired a boat at Aikman's Gardens to proceed up the river. The party consisted of Win. Lumb, fireman, Botney Ann Wood, Pott-hill, Hurst-Brook Mary Howell, Hillgate-street, Hurst Brook Ann Mitchell, Church street, Botney; Jas. Gee, Saml. Shirt, and Elizabeth Pass, Penny Meadow. The females were weavers employed at Whittaker's factory and the young men were also employed there. Two of the men took the oars and the other steered. The boat went all right for a quarter of a mile, when the occu- pants observed water coming in from the bottom. As the water rose rapidly and covered their feet they became alarmed, and were divided in their opinions as to which bank they should try to gain. They were almost in the middle of the stream, and before any well-directed effort was made the boat was swamped, and all were immersed. Some sank and were not observed to rise again, while others struggled on the surface of the water. One of these, Elizabeth Pass, was rescued by a gentleman's gar- dener, named Jarvis, who took his master's boat and put off to the centre of the river. Three others, Ann Mitchell, Jas. Gee, and Saml. Shirt, were picked up by a barge which happened to be coming along the river and made for the scene of the disaster. The bodies of the drowned, William Lumb, Ann Wood, and Mary Howell, were recovered by means of drags, half an hour after the accident. The boat was an ordinary pleasure boat, twenty feet long by four feet wide; and on its being got ashore a small hole the size of an egg was discovered in the garboards. The bodies were afterwards removed to the Town Hall to await an inquest. The news of the acci- dent, it need hardly be said, caused great excite- ment among all the excursionists, and the Town Hall was besieged with those anxious to know if they had a friend among the deceased.

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