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A CLERGYMAN CONVICTED OF AN…

THE FENIAN MOVEMENT.

MJLFLOSION OF A FIREWORK MANUFACTORY.

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MJLFLOSION OF A FIREWORK MANU- FACTORY. Two Persons Killed and One Injured. On Friday afternoon a frightful explosion of powder took place at the firework manufactory of Mr. Joseph Merricks, Church-road, eshells, Birmingham by which two human beings were suddenly deprived of Hfe, and a third so seriously injured as to preclude the hope of recovery. The names of the deceased are Joseph Merricks, aged fifty-five years, and George Memcks, about forty years of age, both married, and residing in Weaman-street, Birmingham; the name of the little girl-the still surviving victim of the catastrophe-Is a "hild of nine years and niece to the deceased. Mr. Merricks babWor eth« n6!? V^ing up a large order, pro- f°p the °f November festivities. His brothei, George Merncks, had not long joined his brother, it is said, m the business, and Friday ^aSr>v?1S ?rS aPP8ara,nce at the charging premises m Church-road. They too, with the little girl, were in the filling shop at the time of the esplosion the other person in the employ of Mr. Joseph Mer- ncks, a man named Hadley, living in Birmingham, being oeoupied in the gMden digging up potatoes for his master, some of which were found amongst the dShns after the explosion. Buckets of water were. quiokly brought by the neighbours, and it was thrown on the blazing shop as fast as it could be obtained, but l. was twenty minutes before the constantly-exploding fireworks were sufficiently damped to render^a at- tempt to enter it at all secure. From the time when tha^explosion occurred to the time when this battery w^r0W°if ceased exploding was about half an hour. Disharged rockets and unfilled rocket cases were lymg^m every direction, together with wheels and other fireworks, some of which had been loaded, and some had not. On examining the magazine, a quantity of saltpetre, a barrel of powder, and another about half filled were found in stock, besides various miscellaneous firework composi- tions. The deceased, Joseph Merricks, had been try- 1J¥ !?ckefcs only J?st before to test their quality, and whether any portion of an exploded rocket was car- ried on his person into the charging shop and thus fired the mixture, or whether it occurred from some other cause cannot be very clearly determined. It was too light to use a candle in the work of fillinjr unless the candle by which the rockets were dif- charged had been placed in,, some insecure position after the rockets had been discharged, which misS: occasioned the explosion, or to have been occa- swlfe fr?m the f e-grate flying across the into the charging powder. It was evident from a frymg-pan suspended to a nail near the £ 1^ aad, other utensils, that victuals were cooked in the shop, so though the actual cause of the explosion is LflaSaT 8 were evidently sufficient Eaeans to cause it unless carefully guarded agaiast by adequate precautions. Joseph Merricks has left a widow but no family. widow but 110 family.

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