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_____________________ COUNTY…


[No title]



DREADFUL EXPLOSION OF GUN- POWDER. LOSS OF TWO LIVES. MIRACULOUS ESCAPE OF OTHERS. ENTIRE DESTRUCTION OF A HOUSE. An accident of a most appaling and calamitous nature, which has excited the deepest interest and excitement in the neighbourhod, happened a few minutes before 10 p.m., on Thursday, at the Black Lane, Pentre, the residence of Mrs. Henry Howard, gunpowder dealer and oil merchant. It would appear that John Kelly, aged about 20, who assists with the powder, was with the assistance of Margaret Kate Parry, filling a bottle with powder to be called for early next morning by some collier in the district, when by some means altogether unaccountable the powderignited, rendering the house and furniture in a moment a com- plete wreck and mass of broken fragments and debris, and causing the instantaneous death of the two mentioned, John Kelly and Margarate Kate Parry, orphan neice of Mrs. Howard. So complete was the destruction, that of a large stone house comprising five apart- ments, only the two gable walls remained standing, the front and back walls with partition walls lying in all directions, the roof falling in and the house completely gutted. The shutters and window frames were carried some distance away, flying in splinters over the adjoining houses. The report was somewhat similar to the explosion of some very powerful boiler and, was heard through the district carrying consternation and fright, through the immediate vicinity. The house which stands in a line with five or six others along the Black Lane is separated from the others by about three feet on each side those immediately in front standing about 10 yards away only considerably lower so that no damage is done to the adjacent property. The terrific report and the cries of Mrs. Howard who was seated in the kitchen at the time, having only recently returned from visiting some friends, soon brought help and she was with difficulty extracted from the fallen masses by Mr. John and Seth Roberts, Black Lane, assisted by other neighbours and removed to an almost adjoining house. She had a most miraculous escape, escaping with a lacerated face and bruises from the fallen roof, the roof over the parlour having fallen first which prevented the roof over the kitchen from falling in, it being supposed that the explosion took place in a small pantry behind the parlour, both of the deceased being blown through into the parlour. Soon the scene was crowded with the aroused and startled neighbours, many having left their beds, and search was made for the missing bodies, which were subsequently found dead among the debris in a burnt and frightful condition, and removed to a house near. Dr. Parry, Summerhill, was quickly in attendance, and rendered timely assis- tance to Mrs Howard, who continued in a most hysterical and unconscious state during the whole night. On going to press, we learn that she was somewhat improving, but in a very enfeebled state. Strange to say, that in the midst of all a candle re- mained burning on the mantle-piece in the kitchen, and a small dog in the cupboard escaped unharmed. Dur- ing the removal of a portion of the debris and the bodies, a powder bottle was found, which held about 4 lbs., the top being completely blown away, and in a bent con- dition. The deceased Margaret Kate Parry was the adopted orphan niece of Mrs. Howard, by whom she had been brought up with from infancy, and had only about a month ago returned from service at the Rhos. The deceased John Kelly was son of John Kelly, collier, who lives in a house only separated from Mrs. Howard's by a narrow pathway, and who assisted Mrs. Howard with the powder, and in compounding cart- ridges for use in the mines. Early on Friday the scene of the explosion was visited by great numbers of people in the locality, and the utmost interest was manifested in the dreadful accident. Those who were immediate eye witnesses of it have received an im- pression not easily to be forgotten, the force and violence being perfectly astounding. A silk dress, which had been placed on a bush in the garden a few yards in front of the parlour window, was entirely scorched to a mere rag. Great praise is due to the many neighbours and friends who rendered all available help in so dire a calamity in a most prompt and willing manner.

itrid hin$. -----.





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