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------------DEATH OF MR H.…


DEATH OF MR H. W. WILLIAMS, F.C.S. FORMER PROPRIETOR AND EDITOR OF THE COUNTY GUARDIAN." We have to record with very sincere re- gret the sudden death some time during Tuesday ni.cht, of Mr. Henry Whiteside Williams, for many years proprietor and editor of the Pembroke County Guar- dian." Mr. Williams has been failing in health for several years, and for months past his condition has been regarded as very serious by his friends. On Tuesday lie was at the County Guardian office and occupied himself with his usual duties. He complained several times that he was feeling ill, and about 7 p.m., when he came into the office, he walked about for a short time and then remarked that he was feel- ing very queer and would go home and to C, t) bed. He appears t" have one io his I apartments in Lower Cambrian Plaee, and to have retired without his condition exciting any comment. He did not come down as usual on Wednesday morning, and I when some one went upstairs to see the cause, he was found dead in bed. His I appearance indicated that lie had passed OaNN-iv in his sleep peacefully. 3 Mr. Williams was 52 years of age, but I his long illness made him seem a much older man. Forty-seven years ago his father founded the Dewsland and Kernes Guardian." It was printed at Solva, and from the outset made its mark. When the late Mr. Williams was old enough he was apprenticed to the printing, and on com- pleting his time, went into England to gain experience. After the death of his parents he took over the Guardian," and altered its Litle to the one it now bears The Pem- broke County Guardian," and subsequently published it at Fishguard and at Solva. In his prime, Mr. Williams was a man 01 keen business instincts. He also possessed considerable literary ability, and under his management the County Guardian prospered, while his personal intimacy with many literary men was the means oi obtaining for the paper valuable contribu- tions from many of the best known writers of the day, particularly in its antiquarian columns. Mr. Williams was always am- bitious that his paper should be a county paper, in fact as well as in name; but his own failing health made it impossible lor him to personally realise his long cherished desire. About a year ago, however, the County Guardian and its printing business was transferred to a limited lia- bility company, with head-quarters at Haverfordwest, and branches at Fishguard, Solva, and Pembroke Dock .Mr. Williams became one of the managing directors of the new company, and though his ill- health prevented him taking a very active part in the new development of the paper, he was keenly interested jn its progress, and no one was more delighted than he was at the new vista opening out and the enlarged sphere of influence and usefulness which each week rewarded the enterprise of the new company. He was a Fellow of the Geological Society, and a recognised authority in South Wales on all geological matters. iN40 one knew more ttian he of the geologi- cal formations of Pembrokeshire. He was a keen antiquarian, and was a member of the Cambrian Archaeological Society, for which he was one of the two hon. secre- taries in this county. He was pos- sessed, as we have said, of considerable literary ability, and his papers on geologi- cal and archaeological subjects were always full of interesting information, and dressed up in good literary style. He will be mourned by a wife and eight children, some of whom are grown up, as well as two sisters, several nephews and nieces, and a large circle of friends. The funeral will take place on Sunday at 2 o'clock from Harbour House, Lower Solva. THE INQUEST. A inquest was held at the Masonic Hall on Thursday evening, by Mr. H. J. E. Price, coroner for the South of the county. Mr. John A. Bland was chosen foreman of he jury, which consisted of Messrs. Francis A. Scott. B. W. Clarke., John Llewellyn, Walter John, R. Sinnett, W. T. Gvvilliam, James Griffiths, James Phillips, John G. Bowen, David Evans, Geo. Thomas and Rev. J. L. Jones. The first witness was Mr. J. W. Hammond, Joint Managing Director of the "Pembroke County Guardian," Limited, who said he had known the deceased for 12 years. Deceased was 52 years of age, and for the last 8 years had been in ill-health. He had been sub- ject to fits and was hardly free from them any day. On the previous Tuesday he seemed somewhat worse than usual and complained of pains in the stomach. He left the office between 6 and 7, and said he was going to bed early. Witness knew nothing of a chlorodyne bottle having been found in deceased's bed- room. He knew Mr. Williams had been at one time in the habit of taking chlorodyne, but understood from him that he had given up doing so. Deceased had often told him that he slept well. Miss M,ary Williams, 5, Lower Cambrian Place, said Mr. Williams had been lodging with her about one month. He had com- plained to her of not feeling very well, and on Tuesday seemed about as usual. A little after 6 he came in and said he was ging to bed as he did not feel very well. He usually come. down soon after 8, but a little before 10, as he had not come down, she called him. Failing to get an answer, she fetched a ne h bour Rev. J. S. Jones who, with Mr. Morgans, insurance agent, went up to the bedroom" and then sent for a police officor. She was not aware that he was taking any medicine. She saw him in a fit soon trter he came to lodge with her. It was a kind of a faint. She did not hear any sound from his bedroom during Tuesday night. P.S. James stated that just before 11 a.m. he went to Cambrian Place and found de- ceased lying in bed on his left side quite dead and cold. He appeared as though he had died in his sleep, quite peacefully. Wit- ness found the bottle produced, containing a little chlorodyne, on the dressing table. He found it had been purchased by deceased on Tuesday evening. Di". James Wilson said he had made an ex- amination of the body and found the liver very small and contracted, as a result of alcoholism, and he had deeply congested lungs. Docomposition had already set in rapidly. He could not say that deceased had been taking anything, but what was coming from his mouth looked liked it. He was of opinion that death was due to asphyxia, as the result of an cver-dose of chlorodyne, although it was impossible to say definitely, as 'he state of his liver would be sufficient to cause death, or he might have had a fit. Being a dyspeptic, Mr. Williams would take chlorodyne, and he might have taken an ovetr-dose. p The coroner, in summing up, said they -ill Djj knew Mr. Williams .very well, and no doubt || they, as well as himself, would deeply deplore I his death. As they had heaid from Mr. Ham- H mond he had betn in bad health for some 1 years, and in fact had suffered more or leseS for the last 9 years. It was luite possible 9 that he had accidentally taken an over-dose of M chlorodyne, as he appeared to have been in H the habit of taking the stuff, and might very [easily have taken an over-dose, thinking he ■ would thus have a better night's rest. He waa §] not sure to which cause the Dr. assigned the 0 >lea.th? S Dr. Wilson said his opinion was that de. ceased had. died from asphyxia, caused by the 9 chloicdym?, an ov'3rv o.ose ox which he no 9 doubt took by accident. uj The Coroner said they had nothing to show* that MT. Williams intended to take an over-9 dose, and if he did so it' might have been by pure inadvertence. From the Dr. s evidence they might bring in a verdict that death was due to an over dose of chlorodyne, taken in- advertently. The foreman: Or we may bring in a verdict of natural causes, because the Dr. said he might, have died from any one of three causes. At this stage Mr. Evan Morgan, a nephew, interposed, and asked to give evidence. He was sworn and said he was a colliery clerk, living at Ystirad Rhondda. About three months ago he was sent for to go to Solva to see the deceased, who was then very seriously ill. At that time the Dr. told de- ceased not to take any intoxicants or tobacco, or chlorodyne, and he ceased to Use them. When he recovered, deceased went back with witness to the Rhondda and remained there for six weeks. During that time the deceased abstained from chlorodyne, and was very ab- stemious in his use of alcohol. A few weeks ago his uncle returned to Haverfordwest. The coroner, again addressing the jury, said he had directed them to the best of his ability. He would be the last to ask them to bring in a verdict which the evidence did not warrant. On the other hand he did not think he would be doing his duty if he did not point out to them the effect of the evidence. Personally he had the greatest :espect for Mr. William?, and if by any accident he had taken an over- dose of chlorodyne that might have happened without any slur being cast upon his memory. That was the light in which he (the coroner) regarded it. In reply to the foreman, Dr. Wilson said the condition of the deceased showed that he suffered acutely from dyspepsia, and he pro- probably took the chlorodyne as a relief. Replying to the coroner, Dr. Wilson said people in the condition of deceased would sometimes take too much without intending it. The fact that he had abstained from the drug for a time would render him less able to stand such a large dose as he might for- merly have been in the habit of ta-l-lig. Mr. David Evans (a juiyman), remarked that probably deceised thought he could take the same dose as he did before leaving it oft', but his constitution would not stand it. The Coroner considered that a very probable explanation. The foreman thought they might bring in a verdict of natural causes, because the Dr. had told them death might have resulted frori, one of three causes Dr. Wilson: Yes, he may have had a fit The foreman: And his liver was in a bad state. At the suggestion of the coroner, the jury were left to consider their verdict in private. In a few minutes it was announced that they had decided on a verdict that death was due to cirrhosis of the liver, accelerated by an over-dose of chlorodyne.