Evidence Type: Newspaper Report > Coroner’s Inquest
16 June 1832
On Tuesday last, a Coroner’s Inquest was held in the Female Factory, Parramatta, on the body of an infant named JAMES CONNELL, aged four months and three weeks, who died on the preceding Sunday evening. After viewing the body, which lay in the hospital belonging to the establishment, the Jury proceeded to examine witnesses, from whose testimony it appeared that the mother of the deceased infant was infected with the itch, which was caught by the child from her about three weeks ago, since which period he lingered in excessive pain, accompanied, at intervals, with strong convulsions, and expired on the evening of Sunday last. It also appeared in evidence, that although several women and children in the factory were labouring under the same disease, they were confined in the same ward with other females who were not infected with it, but were under medical treatment for various other complaints. The Jury returned a verdict of “Died by the visitation of God.”
At the conclusion of the investigation, the Jury strongly recommended the Coroner to record, in the Visiting Book of the Establishment, an expression of their great disapprobation of women infected with this loathsome disease being confined in the same ward with others who are free from it; accompanied with a request that they should be kept apart, and also recommending that dead bodies should, in future, be removed to their proper place—the dead-house, which now seems to be used for some other purpose—and not suffered to remain in the sick-room, as had been the case in this instance.
The above is the substance of a communication from our Parramatta correspondent. We perfectly coincide in the recommendation of the Jury, and agree with our correspondent, that the utmost care should be taken to prevent the spread of so infectious and nasty a disease; otherwise the most disastrous consequence may result to families receiving female servants from the Factory. We have no doubt, however, the subject will receive the most prompt attention in the proper quarter.
See Original: “CORONER’S INQUEST,” The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (NSW : 1803 – 1842), Saturday 16 June 1832, p. 2.