On This Day – Three Birthdays and the Rugeley Poisoner

14 May

Murder In Holy Orders

Durham Cathedral & Fulling Mill

1080 William Walcher, the Bishop of Durham and Earl of Northumberland, was murdered. As revenge, William the Conqueror ravaged the area and took the opportunity to invade Scotland and build the castle at Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

Happy Birthday Mr. Gainsborough

1727 Thomas Gainsborough, English painter and founder of the English School of portrait and landscape painting, was born.

Small Pox Vaccine

1796 Edward Jenner became the first British physician to carry out a successful vaccination; on an eight year old boy against smallpox. His pioneering work laid the foundation for modern immunology techniques.

Steam Around the World

HMS Driver.jpg

1847 HMS Driver completed the first circumnavigation of the world by a steamship when it arrived back at Spithead on the Hampshire coast.

The Rugeley Poisoner

SBC poster 'celebrating' the 150th Anniversary!

1856 The trial of William Palmer, doctor and poisoner, began at the Old Bailey. Palmer’s victims were poisoned with strychnine. They included creditors, at least four of his 14 illegitimate children, his mother-in-law, his wife who had brought him a large dowry, and other relations. Palmer was found guilty and executed in his native Staffordshire.

Happy Birthday, NSPPC

Reverend Benjamin Waugh

1889 The children’s charity the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, was launched in London. Liverpool businessman Thomas Agnew had visited the New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children and was so impressed that he returned to England determined to provide similar help. In 1895 Queen Victoria became its first Royal Patron but it did not change its title to ‘Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children’ or similar, as the acronym NSPCC was already well established.

Blackpool Tower Circus

1894 Blackpool Tower Circus first opened to the public and 30,000 people paid a 6d entrance fee.

The Butcher of the Somme

Douglas Haig.jpg

1921 The British Legion was founded by Earl Haig (known as ‘Butcher of the Somme’).

Happy Birthday, Eric Morecambe

1926 Eric Morecambe, comedian, was born.

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Posted by on 14/05/2012 in Uncategorized


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