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Horrible Discovery at the…


Horrible Discovery at the Cardiff Cemetery. TWO DEAD INFANTS IN A BOX. The Inquest. At the Roath police-station, Cardiff, on Thurs- day evening, the Borough Coroner (Mr E. B. Recce) held an inquiry into the circumstances connected with the finding of the bodies of two newly-born female infants at the Cardiff Ceme- tery, on the previous day. Thomas Pulfin, labourer, said I am employed and reside at the New Cemetery at Cardiff. I was working there on the afternoon of the 7th inst. at about three o'clock. Walking along the footpath to the Roman Catholic burial ground, I saw a box lying on a grave. I went to it and sent for the manager, but neither of us opened the box. I next went for a constable. He returned with me and opened the box. In it we found the bodies of two infants. The constable took charge of the box and bodies. At about twenty minutes to seven the same morning I had gone along the path, but did not notice the box, which was only two or three yards from the path. P.C. James Hughes said Thomas Pullin came to me yesterday afternoon, at about a quarter to five o'clock, and told me there was a small box on the screen at the cemetery. I opened the box and found therein the bodies of two infants. Over them was a piece of cloth like bed-ticking. I brought them to the police-station. The box isof the character of a raisin box. The cover was nailed down. Dr. Maurice Evans, Roath, said I saw the bodies of the two female infants to-day at twelve o'clock and made a post-mortem examina- tion on each body. The bodies were those of newly-born. female children, in size and measure answering to the description of those who had arrived at the seventh or eighth month of maturity. Probably thej' have beea of the full term of nine mouths, supposing them to be twins. Neither of the bodies have been washed. The umbilical cords ci both have been cut off by a sharp instrument, leaving about au inch and a quarter. The cords was not tied in either case. The larger of the two bodies measured 13 inches in length, which is about the average of a full born child. It weighed 31 bs 9ozs. The average would be from olbs to 81bs. On opening the chest- I found that the right lung filled the cavity of the chest, and was of a reddish hue. The left part filled the cavity, and was of a dark colour. On removing the lungs they floated freely in water, find on cutting in pieces and pressing them they aiso floated. This indicated that a cei-Uiii I amouut or breathing had taken place, but the lungs were not pink enough to indicate full respiration. There was very little biood iu this child, the cavities cf the heart being quite empty, indicating that the child hid lost blood from hemorrhage. The smaller child was 144 inches in length, and weighed-two pounds seven ounces. This child was fatter than the the lungs tilled both cavities. The right lung was much more pink than either of the lungs of the other child. The previous tests answered in a similar way. There was plenty of blood iu this child. I am also of opinion that the child had breathed mora freely than the other. I cannot speak as to either child having existed separately from the mother but if the mother, or mothers, had had proper atten- tion, both children might have lived. 1 have no hesitation in saying that both children were born alive. From the manner in which the cords had been cut, it is clear that the mother must have had assistance in each case. I think the bodies must have been at the cemetery all night, as they were frozen, and some ice was found under'the arm of the larger child. The birth had probably taken place within 24 hours of my time of seeing the bodies, which were quite fresh. 1 The Coroner reviewed the facts under which I the infants had been found, and, further advising the jury, said he thought they had better bring in I' an open verdict. it the mother of the children could be found, the magistrates would proceed with the case under further evidence. But that was unlikely, though the case was a very suspi- cious one. Probably the children were wilfully neglected and allowed to die, but they had not written evidence o, it. The jury, after a minute's consideration, con- cluded that two oewiy-borti female infants were found dead in a box in the Cardiff Cemetery on the 7th January, out there is not sufficient evi- dence to show whether they had been born alive or, if born alive, what was the cause of death in either case."