Wednesday, 15 August 2018

Unhappy Families - the Reids and the McIntyres

A QUEER CASE
Dunedin, May 18.
An inquest commenced this afternoon into the death of Margaret McIntyre, aged 17. She has been employed as a Servant in the family of Mrs. G. F. Reid. The evidence of the girl's parents showed that the girl was in good health, when she entered Mrs. Reid's service, and that when they visited her a few hours before her death, she was lying on a mattress, in a very neglected condition. They stated that Mrs. Reid offered them first £500 and afterwards £2000, to say nothing about the matter. Messrs. Stout and Gillies were watching the investigation on behalf of Mrs. Reid, and will seek to establish that the girl died from diarrhea.  -Oamaru Mail, 19/5/1877.


"Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." 
Leo Tolstoy, "Anna Karenina."

George Forrest Reid was a Victorian capitalist. Arriving in Dunedin from India in 1866 in his early 30s, he was an upwardly-mobile entrepreneur, a "forwarding agent," engaged in shipping out the products of Otago farms and shipping in the equipment to be bought by the same farmers to make their farming more efficient.  He also had interests in sawmills in the Catlins area and the coastal shipping which was the prime mover of goods and people in the days before the railway.



LAUNCH OF THE S.S. MATAU.
Another evidence of the spirit of enterprise which pervades Otago was given on Saturday afternoon, when the new steamer built at Pelichet Bay, to the order of G. F. Reid and Co. was launched from the building yard of Messrs Kincaid, McQueen, and Co. The day was very fine, which induced a large number of persons to assemble on the ground, amongst them being a fair sprinkling of ladies. At half-past one, the tide then being at its height, the word was given to make ready, the dogs were knocked out, and the vessel commenced to glide gracefully into the water. Mrs Reid broke the orthodox bottle of champagne against the vessel's bow, and at the same time christened her the Matau — so-called after one of the branches of the Clutha river— amidst loud and prolonged cheering. The launch was the most successful that has taken place here, and, if auguries count for anything, should presage a prosperous career for the new boat. She was hauled over to the Pelichet Bay Jetty, and, a fiddler being at hand, dancing was kept up with spirit for the rest of the afternoon. 
The Matau, with her engines and boiler, is the handiwork of Messrs Kincaid, McQueen, and Co., of this city, and is the heaviest piece of work of the kind ever attempted in the Colony, and, excepting New South Wales, we may say the Colonies. She has been well and faithfully built, has good lines, good carrying capacity, and is of a light draught of water. The building of such a vessel must prove a very effectual argument against those persons who are everlastingly advocating the sending of money out of the Colony to the detriment of the Colony itself and the reputations of our craftsmen. The vessel's keel was laid down in the beginning of August last, and she has been completed in very good time, especially when the inclement weather which prevailed during that period is taken into consideration. Her dimensions are: Length of keel, 127 ft; overall, 183ft; beam, 18ft; depth of hold, 7ft 10in. She has not been measured yet, but will be equal to about 100 tons register, with a carrying capacity of 150 tons. The saloon is on deck, amidships, forward of the engines, which will lessen the disagreeable motion of the screw very considerably. It is fitted with 20 sleeping berths, and includes a ladies' cabin. The second cabin is aft, and will have accommodation for 14 passengers. She will be three-masted, schooner-rigged, will have a steam winch and other requisites, which will tend to the expeditious and economical working of the vessel. 
Her engines are on the compound surface-condensing principle of 50 h.p. nominal, capable of working up to 200 h.p. They will be supplied with steam by a tubular boiler 8ft. 8in. in diameter, and 10ft. in length, constructed of the best material. They are in a very forward state, and will be shipped as soon as possible. The screw is a four-bladed one, having a good rough pitch, and is expected to drive the vessel through the water at 10-knot speed. The contractors expect to have the vessel finished and out of hand in about six weeks time, when she will enter the Port Molyneux trade, when we hope she will prove a source of considerable profit to her owners.  -Otago Witness, 15/1/1876.


Death of Mr G. F. Reid.
Intelligence of the death of Mr G. F. Reid will be received with regret by a large number of residents in this district. The deceased was a man of kindly disposition, and an enterprising and valuable colonist. We take the following particulars of his death from Thursday's 'Guardian': — " Between twelve and one o'clock yesterday afternoon, the town was startled by the announcement of the sudden death of Mr G. F. Reid, forwarding agent and general merchant, of Stafford street, and on making inquiry we found that the sad news was but too true. It appears that Mr Reid had been ailing for some time, and had been regularly attended to by Dr Burns. He came down to business as usual yesterday morning, and went to his own room, where he had not been long before he was heard groaning, and shortly afterwards the noise of his falling on the floor attracted attention. Dr Burns, who was in the store at the time, immediately repaired to his assistance, and likewise sent for Mr Leavy, chemist, Princes-street, the deceased being evidently in a fit but notwithstanding all that could be done, the unfortunate gentleman expired in about half-an-hour afterward. From all we could learn last evening, the exact cause of death had not been fully ascertained. We understand Mr Reid's life was, insured, with the Government Life Assurance Office to the sum of £3000, an amount which, if the statement is correct, will be a valuable assistance to his wife and family. The deceased was highly respected in the city as a pushing, energetic man; his warm, genial disposition making him well-liked by all. He has been in an extensive way of business here ever since his arrival from India, where he was located some years ago. We are not in a position to state how his affairs have been left, although it is rumored that they are likely to be somewhat involved, owing to various heavy losses he had recently made, and other causes." We were informed, by telegram, last night that an inquest was held on the body yesterday, and that the jury returned a verdict to the effect that the deceased poisoned himself with strychnine, while temporarily insane. -Bruce Herald, 18/2/1876.

INQUEST ON MR. G. F. REID.
An inquest was held at Baxter's Maitland Hotel, at three o'clock this afternoon, before Mr I. N. Watt, Acting-District Coroner, and a jury of fifteen, touching the death of Mr G. F. Reid, forwarding agent. 
The Coroner stated that he had a medical certificate from Dr Burns as to the cause of death: Dr Burns would, however, be present, and would certify to the cause of death. The certificate, which was not evidence was to this effect:—"I hereby certify that George Forrest Reid, merchant, residing in Manor place, died at his place of business this day (Wednesday), and that the cause of death was poisoning by strychnine, administered by himself, and admitted to me."
Robert Burns, duly qualified medical practitioner, had known the deceased ever since he came to this country eight or ten years s'nee. He had been in attendance on him previous to his decease. Witness called at deceased's place of business yesterday morning at about a quarter past twelve. He found him upstairs lying on a rug on the floor in the corner of the room. He said he was glad to see witness as he had taken strychnine. Witness asked him how long before; he said three hours. Witness said: That can't be, you've been downstairs till half an-hour ago Mr Reid. He immediately said. "Oh, I don't know what I am talking about. My head's all confused, I haven't taken any. You see I've been vomiting. I've great pain in my bowels, and I was purging all night." Witness at this time could not detect any symptoms of his having taken strychnine. Witness mentioned to show how little reliance could be then placed on his testimony that he taxed the deceased with drinking brandy (smelling it on him), but he said, "No, not a drop." Witness came down stairs to the office, and sent to Mr Leary's chemist for some medicine While waiting for it he heard a noise from above as though Mr Reid was getting on his feet. Witness immediately ran upstairs. He heard him say "Oh, doctor" as he entered the room. His appearance was perfectly changed: his face was livid, his head thrown back, his eye-balls prominent and staring out of his head; his features fixed, his whole body rigid and convulsed. He never spoke again. The lividity of textures and the rigidity of body increased. He remained in that condition for two or three minutes; his limbs gradually extended; his pulse weakened, and he died within four minutes of that convulsion. Prior to his decease witness was attending him for depression and melancholy. He had evidently been drinking too freely. 
The Coroner: Tea, water, or ardent spirituous liquors? We all drink something. 
Witness: Spirits. While he was in life I never doubted his sanity, but, looking at the whole circumstances, I am now of opinion that he was insane. I am satisfied that he died from poisoning by strychnine. 
The Coroner (to the Foreman): There has been no post mortem examination. 
Witness: I never saw a case of poisoning by strychnine before; but I never saw a case of death from disease like this. I do not believe he had taken the strychnine more than fifteen minutes before he died. .
Robert Nimmo, clerk to the deceased, said that he went upstairs yesterday morning he found the deceased lying on a piece of drugget on the floor. He asked witness to let him rest quietly for half an hour. His face was flushed, and he had evidently been drinking. Witness went up stairs again at about 12 o'clock, and deceased asked witness to let him rest a few minutes longer. Witness went down stairs, and Dr. Burns coming in witness asked him to go and see deceased, who was evidently flushed and unwell. The doctor went upstairs. 
The verdict was "Death by strychnine self administered, while temporarily insane."  -Evening Star, 17/2/1876.
Southern Cemetery, Dunedin
Martha Reid, George's wife is reported on the tenth of January, 1876, as launching the "Matau," the latest ship owned by her husband's company, with "the orthodox bottle of champagne against the vessel's bow."  I imagine that George, thinking of his business affairs and quietly despairing, did not confide in his wife.  He watched her christen the "Matau," perhaps watched her as she danced to the fiddler on the ship's deck.  His death, little more than a month after the launching, must have been a devastating blow - in one event removing his wife's life-partner, lifestyle and security.  The Reids were part of Dunedin society, active in church and local government affairs and rising steadily in status.  Added to this one crushing blow would be the ongoing tension of her husband's affairs being taken through the courts to attempt to satisfy his creditors, uncertainty for the future of herself and her children - as well as the day-to-day tensions of the raising of her children.  Martha Reid was a woman betrayed by fate.
There is no excuse for Mrs Reid's beating and otherwise ill treatment of 17 year old Margaret McIntyre.  But, when Margret joined the Reid household in February of 1877, she joined a household at an emotional breaking point.
The following account I personally found as distressing as the treatment Margaret had when she was alive.  I do understand that forensic evidence must be gathered in a case like this.  But Margaret McIntyre seems to have been as much objectified in death as she was in life...

PECULIAR DEATH OF A SERVANT GIRL.
The following evidence was given after we went to press yesterday-
 Mrs Reid: On Wednesday I did not think it was anything serious, or I would have been glad to have sent for medical advice. I devoted most of my time to her since Friday. I did not know what to do when I saw the deceased knocking herself about. I was almost frantic at the time. Indeed, I have been sorry since that I did not send my daughter for assistance, or call loudly, or do something of that kind. I think that the so-called chaps in Maggie’s hands and feet were caused by the wind. She was careless in going without her boots into the yard. With regard to her being found without anything under her on the mattrass, that was the only position I could get her into before the neighbors came. When Mrs McIntyre came she was very excited. She said to me, “You wicked woman, to put my daughter down here like a brute.” I said, "Mrs McIntyre, how dare you talk to me in this way’’ She said that I was murdering her daughter. I don’t remember her expressions, but they were very violent. I said, “Everything that it is possible to have been done I have done and will do.” Dr Batchelor came and saw the deceased. He said she was in a very despairing kind of way —in a dying state. He said there was no hope of her, that it would be well to call in another medical gentleman.  Dr Reimer was sent for and he came along in about twenty minutes.  They wrote a prescription and it seemed to relieve her a little.  She was continually moaning all the Wednesday, until she died at half-past eleven o’clock at night. That is all I can say about that. I wish to say something about the £500. I did not get to bed till three o’clock on Thursday morning. I was very much frightened about the inquest, as I had never been before a lot of gentlemen, and I was very nervous. I therefore endeavored to have a private investigation of the case before a few gentlemen. Mr McIntyre said to me, “You wicked woman, you have murdered my daughter. You are a murderess, and I am going to Mr Stout to get you transported.” I was heart-broken, as I had done all I could, I said I would give £500 rather than there should be an inquest, meaning that I would prefer a full private investigation—indeed, that I would rather give £2,000 than that it should have happened in my house—that it was such an unpleasant thing, as I had been in trouble before, and I have no husband or father to assist me. The windows of the play-room ware intentionally taken out in order to provide ventilation, the place being very close. Mrs McIntyre asked for something extra on account of Maggie staying with me for over the two months. I said “Oh certainly,” and I offered her the £2. While Mrs McIntyre was in the act of taking it, Mr McIntyre said “Oh, don’t take it, missus. We have plenty of money.” 

By Mr Cook: I was nursing the deceased and expecting her to recover every day. Indeed, I was neglecting my own children for her. I exceedingly regret that I did not send for her parents at an earlier period of the illness. I would have had all the doctors in Dunedin if I thought they were required. I relied on my own judgment. I can swear positively that the girl was not drunk when she was tumbling about. I never thought for a moment of repairing the windows in the playroom where the deceased was lying. 

Mr Cook (to the witness): Have you consulted a doctor in regard to this case? I sent for Dr Batchelor, but he was too busy to come. 
Mr Stout : I did not see Mrs Reid before entering this room. We desire that the case should be fully investigated. If you (Mr Cook) allude to Dr Gillies sitting beside me, he is merely here to assist me in putting medical questions.
Dr Batchelor: I first saw the deceased at mid-day on Wednesday last. She was in a very excited condition, lying in the corner of the room on a mattrass. The first thing that struck me about the girl was her extremely emaciated condition. The eyes were deeply sunk in the head—the eyelids half closed. The eyes themselves seemed glazed and motionless. The right pupil was more dilated than the left. Both were rather contracted. The surface of the body generally was extremely cold. The hands and feet were blue and swollen, and the skin was dry and rough. Over the forehead on the left side was a large bruise, 2in by 2 and 1/2in. The skin was abrased in several places over the forehead. There were scratches and abrasions over the nose, lips, and chin. There was a large bruise on the front of the right thigh, just above the knee, and one to the outside of the left thigh. She was pulseless at the wrist. The heart sounds were very feeble and indistinct. I saw that she was in a dying condition. I ordered her brandy and hot water, which she seemed to swallow with difficulty. I ordered more clothes on the bed and hot bottles to the feet and limbs, and applied a strong mustard plaster to the chest. As I thought the girl was dying, it was best for some one else to see her with me. Meeting Dr Reimer he came up. We ordered a mixture of diffusable stimulants. On that occasion I removed the stockings. This was about twenty minutes after my first visit. I found a large abrasion just above the left ankle, and also portions of skin removed from three toes. All the abrasions were quite recent. In addition to these, the hands and wrists were scratched and abrased, and the upper surface of each foot had a peculiar kind of scratches. These latter were of some days’ duration. The breathing, when I saw the deceased, was silent, shallow, and slow. I saw her again about 6.30 p.m,, when she was very much in the same condition, the body, if anything, slightly warmer, and the breathing a little more noisy. Both pupils were then contracted and insensible to light. Next morning I was told that she had died during the night. There was no bedstead in the room. There were two panes of glass out of the window, and the room was cold. There was no fire or fireplace there. Deceased seemed to me to be half dressed, with a chemise and a kind of jacket outside. I do not think there was enough clothing on the bed. There was a blanket, and the other things were so dirty and shabby that I did not notice what they were. The girl looked as if she was dirty and neglected. I examined the body generally. The hair was scanty and rather short. There were no messes or smell in the room, and I did not notice any marks of blood. I made the post mortem examination with Dr Bakewell yesterday, about fourteen hours after death. There was an extreme emaciation of the whole body. On turning it over, I found a large bruise beneath the left shoulder blade, and another a little lower down nearer the loins. Both these I cut into to see that they were not due to post mortem change. The soles of the feet were not hard and horny. On removing the scalp I found one large extravasation of blood corresponding to the braise over the left eye. Over the top of the head there was another large extravasation or effusion spreading down on either side. At the back of the head there was another large effusion. The foot membrane of the brain was found adherent to the skull. It should have been quite loose. It bad to be cut through before the brain could be removed. There was nothing remarkable about the brain, which seemed to be perfectly healthy. I then opened the abdomen. The first thing that struck me was the entire absence of fat. On removing the breastbone, the lungs were not collapsed as usual, but were of a dark-blue color. There was an entire absence of fat from the whole body. I believe the girl died immediately from congestion of the lungs, but I believe that was brought about by exposure in a cold room while suffering from inflammation of the mucous coat of the bowels in a state of starvation. I consider she was in a state of starvation. The statements regarding the diarrhoea might explain the emptiness of the bowels, but not the want of fat. There was no disease whatever about the girl. I don’t think that the inflammation of the mucous coat of the bowels was of long standing—not more than three or four days. I have no reason to suspect poison as the cause of death. I believe that the emaciation was the emaciation of starvation. I think it is impossible that the scratches could have been caused by a fall. The abrasions may have been, but I don’t think they were. The bruises, at any rate, in the front and back of the forehead were quite probably caused by a fall. I don’t think that any of the scratches on the feet were chaps from the weather. The girl may have scratched herself. I consider that the girl’s falling about the room was caused by weakness. If medical advice had been got on the Sunday I think it would have been possible to have saved the girl’s life, —By Mr Stout: I believe that the condition of the brain was similar to that of an epileptic. Death was not caused from pure starvation, but from congestion of the lungs. If I had heard that the deceased had been subject to fits I should say that there was something in the brain to corroborate the statement. If she had been suffering from diarrhoea, and non assimilation of food for six weeks, I thing the same symptoms would have been produced.
At 6.40pm the hearing was adjourned till noon on Tuesday next. -Evening Star, 19/5/1877. 

 A STRANGE CASE.
The evidence adduced at the inquest on the servant girl at Mrs G F Reids', and who died it is alleged, from ill-usage and neglect, has caused a sensation. Deceased, a servant girl, aged 17, was visited, by Br Bachelor on Wednesday morning last.. He found her in a very peculiar state, very much emaciated, and she had a number of scratches and bruises upon her. He saw her again the same  evening and she died soon after his last visit. The doctor thought himself justified in not giving a certificate as to the cause of death. 
Mr Mclntyre, father of deceased, in his evidence, said: I was sent for to see her about eleven o'clock on Wednesday night. She was then quite unconscious, and was moaning. She was lying on a mattrass, on the floor, and was quite cold. There was apparently not sufficient covering on. She died 'about twelve o'clock, never having spoken since I saw her. There were three marks on her forehead, two of them being open cuts. The arms were also scratched and bruised, and so were her legs. These did not appear to have been recently done. Her hair was much thinner than when I last saw her. She was like a skeleton, being extremely thin. There was no fireplace in her room, and her hands and feet appeared to be swelling up with cold. I did not see any signs of diarrhoea about. The windows in the room were out, but had been papered lip. Before my daughter went to Mrs Reid's she was in good health. My daughter had not been home since going to work for Mrs Reid. I gather from Mrs Reid's daughter that she wished to go home, but was not permitted. Besides bruises on the forehead, there was a cut on the upper part of the nose.
Ann Mclntyre deposed: Deceased was my daughter. On Wednesday morning I received a letter from Mrs Reid, asking my to come and see my daughter immediately. When I got there I found my daughter lying on a mattress without sheets —just like a beast. She was lying on a bare matrass, but had over her a blue blanket and patchwork quilt. She had but one pillow to raise her head. She had on two dresses, and a very dirty chemise. I took off the dresses and found the chemise purged with whitness she was lying in a deplorable state, and never spoke again. Her face was bruised as though marked with weapons. Mrs Reid said she had been tumbling about the room during the night. Her legs and feet were scratched down to the toes. Her back was blue and marked. I did not notice these until after she was dead, not having turned her over until after her death. Her chest was discoloured also. She was as thin as any skeleton could be. Before going to Mrs Reid's she was a stout, healthy girl, and was not subject to .fits. I heard from another daughter that my girl was looking well a month after going to Mrs Reid's employ. When I got to Mrs Reid's house I was met by Mrs Reid, who was crying. She took me to my girl, and when I found that she was lying like a brute beast; I could do nothing. I said, "Do you think I could come and see my daughter lying like a beast ?" Mrs Reid said, "Don't speak to me like that," and tore my bonnet from me. Evidence was also given to show that the girl was of cleanly habits, and that Mrs Reid first offered £500 and subsequently £2000, not to have the matter divulged.
Mrs Reid is widow of Mr G. F. Reid, late merchant in Dunedin, who committed suicide a couple of years ago. 
The inquest was adjourned to Tuesday.
Mr Stout and Mr Gillies are watching the investigation on behalf of Mrs Reid, and will seek to establish that the girl died from diarrhea. 


DEATH OF A FEMALE SERVANT.
THE CORONER'S INQUEST. SECOND DATE.
The inquiry concerning the death of Margaret McIntyre was resumed at the Hospital on the 22nd, before Dr Hocken and a Jury of 14. Mr Stout watched the proceedings on behalf of Mrs G. F. Reid, in whose service the deceased was at the time of death, and Messrs E. Cook and Lewis appeared for Mr and Mrs McIntyre, the girl's parents. The following additional evidence was adduced : —
Mary Ann Sheppard: I live at Portobello with my husband, John Sheppard. The deceased came into my service on January 12, 1876, and left on the 10th February, 1876. She was in good health and complained of nothing. She was not subject to fits, and never complained of pains in her head. She was not an active servant. She was not a dull girl. I could not keep her out of the garden, and was afraid she might kill herself eating fruit. She was discharged on that account. She told me she was never sick in her life except when she had measles. She never went home to visit her mother, who lived eighteen miles away, in Dunedin. She was quite healthy, and enjoyed herself in everything. She was very thin in her figure. I could not say that she looked like a skeleton. She did not look like an unhealthy girl. She always spoke kindly of her father and mother.
By Mr Stout: She did not write to her parents. The fruit she used to eat was unripe. She had plenty of food, and used to take her food heartily and regularly. I spoke to her about eating the fruit, but she continued doing so. She was never put to hard work. She was with me as a nurse.
By a Juror: I hired the girl at Miss Allan's Registry Office, and never saw her parents. 

Katherine Telfer: I am fourteen years of age. I live with my parents at Green Island. I was with Mrs Reid for five months— from August last to February of this year. Deceased came when I left. I did not have enough food to eat. I never saw the deceased. I know nothing about her. When I first went to Mrs Reid's, I slept in a bed, and afterwards had to go on the floor. After I had been there a week, I slept in the children's play-room, on the floor, with only a quilt under me. I had no blankets or pillow or mattress. I had a thick counterpane over me. 

The Coroner: I do not know that I should take this evidence.
Mr Stout: I do not know why the Police called her.
Inspector Mallard: The Jury asked that the servants in the employ of Mrs  Reid should be summoned.
Mr Stout: The Jury might ask for the whole of Dunedin. But that is not evidence.
The Coroner: We want evidence directly on this point. The object of the inquest is to show how deceased came by her death — by fair or foul means.
A Juror: This is one of the means of finding that out. It may be collateral evidence. 

The Coroner: This is not collateral evidence. If it were proved that Mrs Reid had killed 20 servants, yet this case must be examined on its own merits.
Witness (continued): Two of the windowpanes were right out, and a third one was partly out. I stayed with Mrs Reid as long as I did because my father was poorly, and I did not like to leave so many places. I was in one at Green Island, which was the first one I was in. I left at last because I wanted to go home, and did not like it.
A Juror: Did Mrs Reid ever strike you ? Witness: She struck me twice. She did not strike me a third time, because I said I would run away. She struck me with a switch when I was lighting the fire. 

A Juror: Was the food locked up? 

Witness: Yes. 

A Juror: Did you clear away the dinner things?
Witness: No, Mrs Reid generally did that herself. She generally locked it up. She took the bread and butter into her bed-room and kept them there, and I dared not go in there. 

A Juror: Were there locks and keys in the rooms in which you slept? 

Witness: No, just a sort of latch that locked the room from the outside. I was not locked in the room.  Mrs Reid only gave me liberty to go out twice during the five months I was with her. I never asked, and she never refused me any other time. 

Mr Cook: How did you get your portion of food? Did Mrs Reid give it to you? 

Witness: Yes, Mrs Reid supplied it to me from her own table. I did not get beef tea or gruel from time to time.
To Mr Stout: I am now stopping at Green Island. Mr McDonald, the policeman at Green Island, told me to come here. I told him what I could say about the matter. He put two or three questions to me. He took down my answers in writing. The policeman first asked me if Mrs Reid ever beat me. He did not tell me what I was to say to-day. He told me to tell the truth.
Mr Stout: Did you know what you came here to speak about? 

Witness: I came here to speak about Mrs Reid. The policeman did not tell me that. He gave me a summons. The summons does not say anything about Mrs Reid. The policeman asked me if I was ever in Mrs Reid's service. He told me I was to come here to tell how Mrs Reid treated me. I used to go to the Athenaeum sometimes twice a week, and sometimes oftener, when I was with Mrs Reid. I was at Green Island twice on leave. I got a present of a petticoat, and also a dress, when Mrs Reid was giving me my wages. 

C. N. Reimer: I am a duly-qualified medical practitioner, practising in Dunedin. Between 11 and 12 in the forenoon of Wednesday last, Dr Batchelor called me to see the deceased. I went with him. When I got to the house, Mrs Reid took me to the inside parlour, and clasped her arms round my neck, asking me, if possible, to avoid an inquest. I told her that was not what I came for. Dr Batchelor was outside. I went into a back room, and found the patient lying on a mattrass on the floor, covered with, a blanket. I kneeled down by the side of the deceased, and tried to feel her pulse, but the pulse was imperceptible. I examined her heart with a stethoscope, but I could find neither of the two sounds of the heart distinct. The sound was a flutter or quiver. I told Dr Batchelor, "It's no use. We may give her some stimulant, but she is dying." The stimulant given her was ether and ammonia. I noticed two bruises on her forehead. She looked very emaciated, and like as if she had been suffering from a long depressing illness of eight or nine weeks, or even longer. Dysentery or cholera would emaciate her in a shorter time. Typhoid fever, cholera, or prolonged diarrhoea might have produced such emaciation. A few days' illness would certainly not produce such an emaciated state. The eyes were fixed and motionless, and very much sunken. There was no appearance of diarrhoea about the room. I do not think the deceased was in any kind of fit at the time. When I went into the house, I did not suspect any foul play. I simply thought Mrs Reid was in a frantic state. The deceased's mother was in the room when I was there. The room was rather dark and cold. It was raining, and not very cold. 

By Mr Cook: I would expect to find the same symptoms if the patient had been reduced by inadequate nourishment prior to diarrhoea. A young girl would require a full diet, and inadequate nourishment would have a greater effect upon her. Long prolonged sickness or starvation would account for the disappearance of fat. The room in which I saw deceased was not sufficient accommodation. In the first place, the room was cold, and, secondly, the bed was on the floor. It was not a proper room for any patient. Being in such a room for 24 hours would accelerate death, but not cause it.
By a Juror: Diarrhoea would be caused by insufficient food or unwholesome food. Unless the patient was in convulsions or fits I hardly think deceased 24 hours before her death could inflict such bruises on herself as I noticed.
By Mr Stout: I have no opinion as to the cause of death. The post mortem, only could show that.
Mary McIntyre: I live with my parents in South Dunedin. Deceased was my sister. My sister went to Mrs Reid's service on the 10th February, 1877. She was quite well in bodily health at that time. She complained of nothing. She looked very stout and healthy. She was plump. She had had no illness but the measles. She had the measles about 18 months ago. She had nothing but slight colds afterwards. She never had any fits. Sometimes she had slight headaches. They were not frequent. She was never laid up with them. I went to see her the Sunday after she went to Mrs Reid's. I wanted to ask her about another situation her mother wanted to send her to. I told her to ask Mrs Reid if she would let her go. She said she would ask Mrs Reid. She told me Mrs Reid would not let her go until her month was up. I asked her how she liked Mrs Reid. She said she liked her very well. She seemed to be quite well at that time, and very comfortable. She looked very much the same as when she went away. I went to see her again on the 2nd April — about six weeks after. I went to the back door, a little boy came and opened the door. It was one of Mrs Reid's boys. He asked me to come into the kitchen, and I went in. Mrs Reid said to me, "Are you Maggie's sister? Are you younger or older than Maggie?" I said, "I am two years younger." Then Mrs Reid said, "If you have anything to say to Maggie, will you say it here now?" Maggie was in the kitchen with Mrs Reid at, this time. I said, "No. I have got nothing to say particularly. I only came to see now my sister was." Then Maggie said, "Will you bring in a dress for me, Mary?" I said, "Yes." Then Mrs Reid turned to Maggie, and said, "I will let you wash a dress for yourself. You (speaking to me) do not need to come here any more." There was nothing more said by either of them. When I was going away, Mrs Reid said, "If Maggie does not go home on the 16th of this month, she will write to you." I then left. I was in the house about 20 minutes. I had no conversation privately with Maggie on this occasion. Maggie was looking very pale that day. She had not a bit of colour in her face. I never saw her look so pale before. She was in bare feet, and had a crust of bread in her hand. This would be about half-past one o'clock. She had on a short dirty dress. It was one of her own. She looked as if she had been crying. Her eyes were rather red. She did not look quite so stout as when I had seen her before. She looked a good deal thinner. I did not notice any bruises on her. I thought Mrs Reid did not want us to speak together. Her dress looked too wide for her. I never saw my sister again until shortly before her death. A cabman was sent for me. I saw my mother and Mrs Reid with Maggie. She was lying on two mattrasses on the floor. Maggie looked very pale. She was insensible. She did not know me. There were some scratches on her face and cuts on her forehead. Maggie was not afraid to come home. My parents were always very kind to Maggie. She had been in a good many situations. She was not a very smart girl about work. My parents were never angry with her for leaving situations. She would have been quite welcome if she left Mrs Reid's place at any time. I think she was so frightened of Mrs Reid that she would not run away. I thought when I went to see Maggie the second time that she was afraid to speak before Mrs Reid. Maggie wrote a letter about the 16th April to my mother. 

By a Juror: I think Maggie looked as young as me. I told my mother that Maggie looked very pale and much thinner than when she left the house — that she was bare footed, and had on a short dirty dress, and had in her hand a crust of bread, and looked as though she had been crying. Mother said she was very sorry, but she would soon be home from Mrs Reid's if she came home on the 16th. I told my mother that Mrs Reid was not inclined to let Maggie and myself speak in private, and that Maggie appeared frightened of Mrs Reid. She said she did not like to hear that. I never heard more from Maggie, except the letter of the 16th, and never heard anybody speak of her. I never heard my mother say anything about going to see Maggie. She said it might trouble Mrs Reid to go there any more. The letter of the 16th seemed to be in Maggie's handwriting, but did not seem to be so well written as usual. That letter was burnt. It said :— "My dear, I am quite well just now. I am going to stay with Mrs Reid another month, as her old servant could not come back at the time Mrs Reid wanted her. Mrs Reid is very much troubled with headaches, and does not know how to manage with the children by herself. I go to church every Sunday morning." She also stated in the letter that she would be home on the 15th May. 

By Mr Cook: There was a short passage leading from the back door to the kitchen. When I went there on the second visit I heard nothing before I was let in. When I got in Mrs Reid and my sister appeared to have been doing something. 

By Mr Stout: I have been at service about two years and a half. Maggie was at service about six months before I was. I gave my wages to my mother. I was getting 8s a week lately. Maggie was getting 5s. She never asked for any more. Maggie was the eldest daughter. She left one place a few days after breaking a jug. She did not run away. That was Mrs Wise's. She did not tell me why she left. My parents never visited Maggie at Mrs Wise's. They only visited me at one place — Mrs Lucas's.
Ferdinand Campion Batchelor (cross examined by Mr Stout): I did not consider my first post mortem, examination was quite exhaustive, although quite sufficient to form an opinion as to the cause of death. I made a further examination on Saturday last. A Hospital warder was present. I examined the windpipe, tongue, and spinal cord. I had had previously taken portions of the intestines away with me, and these last I further examined with the microscope on Sunday morning. I reexamined the intestines because I had not examined them previously with the microscope. I made this microscopical examination on Sunday morning. I think that was quite in time for this examination. The time might have affected the intestines to some extent. I do not think there was any change. The weather was cold. I kept the portions of the intestines in my surgery. I did not use the microscope on any other part of the body. I examined the intestines to see if there were any changes in the coat of the intestines. The glandular intestine was what I wished to examine. I examined the portion inflamed, and the only change I saw on comparing it with the lower part of the caecum — which was not inflamed — was that the villi were more swollen, and not quite so prominent as those near the caecum. I never read what appearance diseased villi would present. My search was principally to find if the villi were present or absent. The spine was healthy. There was nothing abnormal or strange. The dura mater of the cord was healthy, and the spinal cord looked perfectly healthy, and the spinal fluid was in proper quantity. I did not notice any congestion, there is not the slightest doubt in my mind that the spine was healthy. The pacchionian glands were numerous. It is not a fact that they are only found in grown up persons. They are generally found from seven years upwards. Such a non-development of the uterus as existed in the case of deceased might be coincident with weak intellect. The pacchionian glands were more numerous than usual, considering deceased's age. It was abnormal, and I cannot explain it. I should say that if there was tubercular disease in the brain I would see it without the aid of a microscope. I did not examine the brain with a microscope. I should think that the adhesion of the dura mater was of some standing— I could not say how long. It was a form of meningitis. I agree with these general symptoms of death by starvation, as described by Taylor. Some of those symptoms were present in this case. I never said she died of starvation, but of congestion of the lungs. Out of the fifteen symptoms of death by starvation enumerated by Taylor, there were in this case— three wholly present, four not at all present, two I can say nothing of, and the remainder partially present. You cannot say certainly how congestion of the lungs is caused. I think the congestion of the lungs was recent. I would not say positively what form of congestion it was. If the congestion was produced by cold, it might not have gone onto inflammation. I attribute the swollen feet and hands to feeble and arrested circulation. Possibly, feeble circulation might have caused congestion. The tops of the lungs were healthy. I could tell if there was tubercular disease without microscopical examination. Weakness of the heart may have had something to do with the congestion of the lungs. The brain was not weighed. In my opinion that was not important. I attributed the dilation of one pupil to 'anatomical peculiarity.' Alterations in the pupils, are always important in brain diseases, and are a symptom. When I first saw the patient, I thought that possibly she had been suffering from typhoid fever in a state of collapse, and suffering from perforation of the bowel. I called on the Coroner in the morning following the death. I made the second examination because I thought it would be shorter, and more satisfactory. I did not give notice I was going to make a second examination. "Starvation" does not mean non-eating. "Starvation," in a medical sense, might be from other causes than deprivation of food. In pure passive congestion of the lungs, I would not say that a cold room would hasten the disease. I have not dissected a human brain for five years. The symptoms I have described would 'not be accounted for by tuberculour meningitis. With the latter disease, there might be extreme emaciation and passive congestion of the lungs. By the Coroner: The symptoms described' by Taylor are those of complete starvation. It is very common in post mortem examinations to find adhesions of the membranes of the brain, so I attach not the slightest importance to the attachment of the dura mater in this case. In the convulsions of an epileptic fit it is quite possible that bruises might be self inflated. In this girl's case I should say that all the bruises could not be so inflicted. I do not think those on the front of the right and the side of the left thighs could be so inflicted. The others might be. 
Isabella Esplin: I am in service with Mrs Bell, of Upper Walker street. Ten or twelve days ago I was in the garden with Mrs Bell's baby, and I saw Mrs Reid's servant girl on the verandah, shaking some carpets. Mrs Reid came out and said something to her, and then pulled her hair and boxed her ears, and thumped her with her fists, kicked her, and  shoved her down on the verandah. The girl was screaming, and Mrs Reid took her by the hair of the head, and dragged her into the house, and slammed the door behind her. This was about 11 o'clock in the morning. I could not hear what Mrs Reid said, the girl did not do anything. I have been with Mrs Bell two years, but never saw Mrs Reid strike the girl before this. I can see Mrs Reid's verandah quite plain from Mrs Bell's house. I could not say what Mrs Reid was beating the girl for. I then went in and told Mrs Bell. The girl was barefooted when she was shaking the carpets. I could not see her face, and cannot say how she looked. Mrs Reid spoke to the girl in an angry tone, but I do not know what she said. I never spoke co the deceased, but I have often seen her digging the garden. 

To Mr Cook: The girl fell sideways, and was lying on the verandah when Mrs Reid dragged her in. 

To Mr Stout: Though I did not see the girl's face, I knew it was she by the way in which she was dressed. 
Lewis Harris: I am a miner, and reside in Maitland street. About three weeks ago I had occasion to rise out of my bed at about midnight. My attention was directed to a scuffling noise in Mrs Reid's house. I heard the sound of blows, and some loud cries. After a while, the noise ceased, and was followed by groans and moans, proceeding from the premises. The nature of the cries made me think that they emanated from an adult. I was satisfied that it was not the voice of one of Mrs Reid's children which I heard. It was a female voice. The sounds came from the opposite side of the house to that where I was. The cries and blows continued for two or three minutes. The blows appeared to me to have been given with a stick or whip. When I returned into my house, I mentioned to my wife that someone was getting an unmerciful thrashing. I took notice at the time the cause Of current report that Mrs Reid used to ill treat her servants.
Mr Stout considered it was unfair to pursue this line of examination. The witness should not have been called.
The Witness: When bringing some coals about a fortnight ago, I heard moaning in Mrs Reid's house, but I did not hear any blows struck upon that occasion. To Mr Stout: I went voluntarily to Inspector Mallard on Friday evening, and stated what I knew. The night was remarkably calm, and I am pretty sure that I could distinguish between a blow of a whip and that of' a fist. The voice I heard was from a weak person. I am satisfied that it emanated from a person more than twelve years of age. The cries were loud.
Edith Margaret Helena Reid: I am eleven years of age, and I live with my mother in Manor Place. I knew Margaret McIntyre. She was our servant. I did not know her before she came to our house. She was always quite well up to last Friday week. She then had a headache. She told my mamma that she had a headache, but I did not know it till my mamma told me when I came home from school. I then went to see Maggie, who was in bed in the servant's room. I took her some tea and bread and butter. I asked her how she was, and she said that she was not any better. She was undressed, except her nightgown. She locked pale and thin. I did not see Maggie again that night, nor did I hear anything of her during the night. I saw Maggie next morning, but did not speak to her. She made some beds, and was looking better. I went to Mr Towsey's house, and when I returned at one o'clock, she was in bed. I was at home all the afternoon, and took her her tea. She then seemed to be something the same, and was pale like, but did not complain of any pain. I did not see her again that night. I did not hear her call out or cry as if she were in any pain. I got up on Sunday at 7.30 or 8 o'clock. Maggie was up and made some beds. She looked at The Leisure Hour, and went to bed again. My brother made the fire and mamma prepared breakfast. I did not speak to Maggie about being ill. 
The Coroner: Why did you not ask her if she were better ? — No answer. 

The Witness: I took Maggie her dinner. It consisted of meat and potatoes, and bread and tea. This was all she had. She did not eat it all, but nearly so. I sat by her while she was eating it. She said at this time that she was no better. She stayed in bed all the afternoon and did not cry out, or seem to, have any pain. I took her some cake and tea in the evening  and she said that she liked it. The cake consisted of two or three pieces, and she eat all except a little bit. I asked her if she would have any more, and she replied that she would not. Maggie was in bed on Monday morning when I got up. I went in to see her. I asked her if she were very bad, and she said that she was not. Mamma got breakfast ready for us and took Maggie hers. I went to school, and returned at 4 in the afternoon. Maggie was still in bed. I went in to see her. She was not asleep, and had her nightgown on. She told me that she was giddy. I stayed for a few minutes, and she did not ask for anything. Mamma brought her tea bread and butter and fancy biscuits. She ate half of it. I did not see her again that night, nor did I hear anything. On Tuesday morning I got breakfast and went to school. Maggie was still in bed, and I went in to ask her how she was before I went to school. She was not very well. She seemed to me to be ill, but I do not know in what way. She was quiet, and I never saw her "kicking about" all the time she was ill. I returned from school a little after four. Maggie was in bed in the play-room. I asked her how she was, and she replied that she was not any better. I took her tea - bread and butter and two cups of tea. She took it all. I did not see her again that evening, and did not hear anything in the night. I sleep in the same bed with my mamma, and so does the baby, five years old. No one else sleeps in it. Maggie was still sleeping in the play-room. I don't know who put her there, nor why. I did not ask her. She was sleeping on a paliasse which was on the floor. I got up on Wednesday at eight o'clock, and got my own breakfast. I did not go in to see Maggie because mamma said that she was worse, and as the door of the play-room was shut I heard a noise between three and four o'clock on Wednesday morning in the play-room. It was like stumbling about. I awoke mamma, and she went out and stayed there a good while; and came back and shut the door. She said Maggie was ill, and that she was determined to write to Maggie's mother. I took a letter to the Post Office, and asked that it should be sent at once. The  mail was gone, and a cabman said that he would take. I returned from school at about five o'clock. I saw Maggie. She was in the play-room, and her mother was with her. I took in the milk several mornings when Maggie was ill. I do not think that she ever took it in while she was ill. Maggie was a good girl and a good servant.  My mother said when she was well, she ought to be quick, and not like an old woman. I do not know that my mamma ever beat her. I saw scratches on Maggie's face on Wednesday. On the same day, I noticed that her feet were scratched. I think that was done on Wednesday morning, because mamma said that she fell down that morning. Maggie would sometimes go barefooted. 
To the Jury: Maggie went to the Sunday School once. It was the same Sunday School to which I go.
To Mr Cook: She used to go church nearly every Sunday until lately. She used to go about very slowly, but my mamma used not to scold her. I have seen Maggie crying twice — once was on Good Friday, when my brother hit her with a garden stick on the leg. I am quite sure that I never heard or saw my mother beat Maggie. My mother has told me nothing about what I would have to say here. 
It was now six o'clock, and the Coroner stated that the investigation would have to be adjourned until a future day. Mr Stout said that he was instructed by Mrs Reid to say that several of her servants had volunteered to give evidence as to them having been well treated by her. During the short adjournment he had also heard one of the Jurymen asking Mrs McIntyre why certain things had not been done. This was an improper thing to do. A Juror: I believe Mr Stout refers to me. But I only asked Mrs McIntyre why she had not seen her child during the three months she was at Mrs Reid's. Inspector Mallard had called upon Mrs Reid and asked her to furnish him with the names of  any of her former servants, and that he would summon them, but she replied that' she could not tell him their names. Hence he was obliged to adopt such means as he could. He would only be too glad to call any of her servants. It was the day after the last enquiry that he called upon Mrs Reid.
Mr Stout: It is a strange thing that Mr Mallard should have called upon Mrs Reid instead of communicating with her solicitor. Inspector Mallard: I thought it necessary to make a personal inspection of the premises. I therefore went to the house and asked to be shown the room in which the girl had been. That is how I came to speak to Mrs Reid. The Coroner: I think that you acted fairly in the matter. Mr Stout did not say otherwise but only wished to point out that the course adopted was an unusual one. Inspector Mallard: If Mr Stout furnishes me with the names of any of the servants I will call them. Mr Stout said that he would do so. He also thought that other medical men should be  called to give their opinions as to the symptoms  sworn to. He did not care who, and he suggested Drs Brown, Ferguson, or Tighe.
The Coroner: As regards bringing servants to certify to Mrs Reid's good treatment of them, that cannot be allowed. And I intend to tell the Jury that they are not to take any notice of the evidence of the girl Esplin. They must be guided by present evidence. For the same reason I do not think it worth while to obtain outside medical evidence— that is, medical evidence not connected with the case. The evidence given is that of independent medical men, who are also well competent to give an opinion on the matter. It would prolong the cue grievously if we were to admit outside evidence so we will have no servants, and no extra medical witnesses. The inquiry was adjourned until Friday.  Otago Witness, 26,5,1877.

THE MARGARET McINTYRE CASE.
The following fuller particulars of the inquest on the body of Margaret McIntyre have been telegraphed to a contemporary: — The inquest on the girl McIntyre was brought to a close this afternoon. The medical evidence tended to show that the deceased met her death by starvation and neglect. The evidence given to day by butchers, bakers, and people calling at Mrs Reid's house showed that the girl in cold weather for some weeks past was insufficiently clad and looked miserable. Her hands and face were black from cold, and she was very thin. One witness found her gathering stones on the road. He said: I asked her if she was looking for anything. She said no, she was gathering stones. I asked her who for, and she said for Mrs Reid, who had instructed her to do so. She said she was Mrs Reid's servant. I said it was an unfeeling thing for Mrs Reid to send her to collect stones on such an unseasonable night. She had no hat on, and nothing round her neck. Her arms and shoulders were bare, and I told her to get in, and not collect stones, or she would perish. It aroused a little sympathy in me. She went on picking the stones, but said nothing. At last I said "You had better go in my girl, you will get perished; let Mrs Reid come out and pick them up herself if she wants them." I tried to intimidate her, telling her that there was. a policeman at the bottom of the street, and that he would take her up if he saw her removing metal from the street, and advised her to go in. She said she would pick up one or two more stones, and would then go in, and I left her. She appeared to be slovenly dressed, but I could not tell how she looked as regarded her health. She was very thin. It was a perishing night. Another witness said that Mrs Reid taught a Sunday-school class at St. Matthew's; that deceased went to Sunday school six weeks ago, and on this occasion he asked Mrs Reid to take her into her class, and remarked to her he thought the girl was not well treated. Mrs Reid said the girl was in service "up her way," but did not say she-was in service with herself. At school, on the same occasion, a girl pointed out deceased as Mrs Reid's servant, saying she was made to work without boots or shoes. 
After an address by Mr Stout for Mrs Reid, the Coroner summed up, pointing out the evidence of the deplorable condition of the deceased, and evidence of ill-treatment, and drawing attention to the remarkable unanimity of the medical evidence. If the jury considered that death resulted from starvation and ill-treatment they must next decide by whom this treatment was pursued, whether, in other words, the girl voluntarily subjected herself to starvation, and the effects which followed from it, or whether her mistress (Mrs Reid) was culpable in the matter. If they decided the latter, and he thought the evidence would justify them in doing so, they must next say— and on this point depended the important part of their verdict— to what extent Mrs Reid was blameable; whether triflingly, or to the extent of being guilty of manslaughter or even murder. 
After the jury had been locked up half an hour, the Coroner was apprised that they had agreed upon a verdict. 
The foreman stated that the jury had carefully considered why the girl had not returned to her mother's house, and found: 1st. That the deceased did not come by her death by natural causes. 2nd. Her death was caused by the treatment received at the hands of Mrs Reid. 3rd. That Mrs Reid has been guilty of culpable negligence to the extent of manslaughter. Mrs Reid has been arrested, but will probably be bailed.  -Nelson Evening Mail, 31/5/1877.
Southern Cemetery, Dunedin

Martha Reid was duly tried for the manslaughter of her servant.  Much of the following repeats evidence given at the Coroner's inquest but is included for completeness.  Of the many people involved in the trial, one is conspicuously and necessarily silent - the victim, Margaret.  The words of her family, here recorded, are as close as we come to to the voice of Margaret.





Friday, 13th July.
Before His Honour Mr Justice Johnston
and Special Jury. 
MANSLAUGHTER.
Martha Mary Harris Gill Reid was indicted for having, on the 16th. May of the present year, feloniously killed and slain one Margaret McIntyre, against the peace of our Lady the Queen, her Crown and dignity. The prisoner was also indicted on the Coroner's inquisition. She pleaded Not Guilty. 
Mr Haggitt conducted the prosecution, and Mr Stout, with him. Mr Denniston appeared for the defence. The following Jury were empannelled:— Messrs Coleman Burke (foreman), Thomas Beveridge, W. S. Douglas, J. 0. Eva, G. P. Farquhar, J. Mitchell, H. North, Win. IHackworth, Alex. Bartleman, J. F. Watson, and George Brown. The case was continued this morning, when Dr Batchelor was recalled.
To Mr Haggitt: I think that exposure for one night in such a room would be sufficient to produce the congestion which I found.
To Mr Stout: It is not a mere guess, but an opinion founded on facts. I did not take the temperature of the night previous to the death, but it was a very cold one. 
His Honour: Supposing that the girl had been starved, from time to time, and had been suffering from diarrhoea from Friday night, would her death have been accelerated by being put into that room in the then existing state of the weather?
The witness: It would. Her organs were mot so developed as is usually the case with a girl of her age. This was particularly the case with the uterus. The breasts were also undeveloped. I am not sure that these circumstances would have any effect upon the brain.
To the Jury: Eating unripe fruit would produce diarrhoea; but eating unripe fruit today would not produce diarrhoea four months hence. A patient might be reduced by dysentery to the condition in which I found the girl. She had ho dysentery whatever.
Dr Bakewell: I assisted Dr Batchelor in making a post mortem examination of Margaret McIntyre. The body was extremely emaciated, and there were a great number of bruises and scratches over various parts of the body. Some of these bruises were of a severe character, and large; those on the head particularly so. There was also a bruise on the belly and one on the left shoulder blade. One on the forehead also was among the most remarkable. The opinion I should have formed, looking at the probabilities of the case, is that the injuries were inflicted by some other person. They were not caused by tumbling about or by fits. They could only have been produced by some one else, or voluntarily by herself in the way in which a lunatic would do. I am not taking into account anything I have heard. The post mortem examination did not indicate any disease of the brain or of its membranes. It is quite possible that there was incipient lunacy. There could not have been, I should think, such mania present as would have caused the girl to have inflicted the injuries upon herself without there having been some indication of it in the brain. The injuries were not all inflicted at the same time. The abrasions and scratches were more recent. I cannot say when the oldest of the bruises had been inflicted but I think the oldest could not have existed more than a week. I did not form my judgment from external appearances as we cut the bruises through.. The most recent might have been inflicted a day or two before some of them, .perhaps, within 36 hours. Supposing a person in health to receive a bruise, the length of time which it would remain visible would depend upon the activity of the circulation and the state of the person's health. The thinness or stoutness of a person would affect the time within which the bruises would disappear.If a person is reduced to an attenuated condition by want of food, I would expect the bruises to continue longer. The process of absorption would go on most vigorously with the healthiest patient. The result of the post mortem examination led me to conclude that the primary cause of death was the long-continued want of proper and sufficient food. That of itself would have caused death in time, as emaciation had reached such a stage that it was impossible for life to have continued much longer if the person remained under the same conditions. The second chief cause of death was the injuries which she had received. I mean thereby the bruises and wounds. They were of so severe a character as to contribute very much towards death, and to accelerate it, but not sufficient to cause death to a healthy person but I am not sure but the injuries to the head, with sufficient concussion, would have caused death to a healthy person. Some people suffer much more from concussion than others. The extent of the wound does not necessarily indicate the amount of concussion. The effect of concussion is to produce insensibility. It always occurs immediately. The oedema and congestion of the lungs and inflammation of the bowels, though themselves the effect of the impaired nutrition of the system, contributed to and hastened death. Cold may have contributed, but there was enough without. If the starved person had been exposed to cold, such would undoubtedly tend to create congestion of the lungs. The congestion was quite recent, and probably had set in within 24 hours. It was quite a fresh case. Congestion of the lungs generally leads to inflammation, but not necessarily. It might also produce apoplexy of the lungs. The oedema was a consequence of the congestion. I consider that it was the result of impaired nutrition of the system.  There was alcohol in the stomach, and the fact of brandy having been administered would account for the traces of it which were found in the stomach. I do not consider that small quantities would have caused death. I heard that large quantities had been given to the girl, and that might have produced coma, and so contributed to death. We had no means of estimating the quantity of brandy in the stomach. The only way you could find large quantities is where it causes death immediately. Large quantities might have been given and absorbed by the system. .I have no reason for supposing that she died from the effects of brandy. The state of' emaciation in which I found the deceased could not have been produced otherwise than by the long-continued want of proper or sufficient food. That is consistent with the post mortem appearance. Many other diseases, of which there was no trace, could have produced it. There was no disease about the body to account for emaciation. The inflammation was probably accompanied by diarrhoea. There was no trace of dysentery. Diarrhoea extending over two or three weeks might have produced the emaciation if very severe, but then ulceration would have been produced. I am satisfied there was nothing in the bowels to indicate the existence of such diarrhoea. If the diarrhoea existed at all it was only a contributory cause; if it did exist, it was the result of impaired nutrition.
To the Court: If the girl had been suffering, from diarrhoea for a few days before death, the exposure in the room would have accelerated death in that weather. What I saw is consistent with that having taken place.
To Mr Stout: A medical man cannot tell the age of a bruise. I could tell a recent bruise and whether it had been inflicted within 24 hours. I should not like to fix any time, because I have seen bruises disappear in three days and others not more severe take three weeks. The abrasions were recent, and were not more than 36 hours old, and I should think not more than 24 hours. The bruise on the back of the head might have been caused by a fall. The bruise on the abdomen might, under a combination of improbable circumstances, not have been caused by a second person. I am certain all the bruises on the head and thighs were inflicted within a few hours of each other. The only bruise which appeared to have been inflicted at a different time was that on the abdomen. Looking at a bruise, I can say if the blow was caused by a blow or a fall, that is if it was on the naked skin. There is in general terms no distinction between a bruise caused by a fall or a blow. Bruises on the isame person of the character, extent, and severity, and in the same tissues, would disappear at the same time. A shock might cause death in a very debilitated subject. The result of a shock which did not cause death might be to weaken. You could not inflict such injuries upon a person in that state without producing a shock. The shock, if it produces death, does so not by weakening, but by paralysis of the heart. The inflammation of the bowels does not necessarily show that diarrhoea was present, but it might have been to a slight extent. By putting a person in a debilitated state in a cold room, the vital forces would be sooner exhausted, and would also, by driving the blood inwards, increase the diarrhoea. It would also produce congestion. Cold does hot always produce congestion of the lungs, but I should be sorry to try the experiment with a debilitated person. If a person of emaciated condition were exposed to cold, it would be very much more probable that congestion of the lungs would be produced. 
To the Jury: Falling upon boxes in the room, when the girl was in a weak condition, would, I think, have produced the wound on the abdomen, but certainly not that which was on the head, nor the abrasions on the legs. I do not know how the abrasions were caused. Some could have been done by the finger nails, others looked as if they had been done by something else. They did not appear as if they had been done by the patient falling about. The roughness of the mattrass would not have caused all the abrasions, but it might have produced some of them.
His Honour pointed out there was no evidence of the roughness of the matrasses, and said that such was merely speculation.
Mrs McIntyre, re-called: I did not examine the mattrass, but it was a very hard one. I did not notice that the stuffing was protruding. I do not know what the mattrass was stuffed with.
Dr Bakewell: If there were protrusions from the mattrasses, such might have inflicted some of the slighter abrasions, but the greater part of them were too large to have been caused in that manner. The abrasions, in my opinion, did not conduce to death. I do not now refer to the bruises.
Dr Hocken: I am City Coroner. The inquest in this case was held before me. The prisoner gave evidence. I took it down, and it was read over to her before she signed. She was thoroughly admonished as to her position, and then gave evidence. I told her she was not bound to give evidence. 
To Mr Stout: I told Mrs Reid that there was not the slightest charge against her. 
To His Honnour: I am quite sure that she thoroughly understood that a charge might be made against her. 
To Mr Haggitt: The signature to the depositions now produced is that of Mrs Reid. Dr Hocken was also asked to identify the signature of Mrs Reid to a letter received by Mrs McIntyre, but he was not able to do so without comparing it with the signature to the deposition, and he was not allowed to do that.
Mrs Reid's statement was then read as follows: —  I Martha Mary Harris Gill Reid, being sworn, saith: I am a widow, living in Manor Place. The deceased has been my servant for the last three months. I always thought the girl delicate and melancholy, she was always long and thin since I knew her; she stooped, and her eyes appeared sunken. She looked much older than her stated age. She was very slow, walking about and doing her work slowly, but this did not matter with me, as I had not much to do—just housemaid's work. She did not complain of anything when she came to me, not until about a fortnight ago, when a fire occurred at the mill at the bottom of Manor Place. She retired to bed about nine the evening of the fire. She heard the fire bell ring at 11, and threw on her dress over her night gown, and told me that she would go to the fire, as she' wished to see the hose play. She stayed away about two hours— certainly more than an hour and a half. I asked her about it. The  next day I noticed she had a slight cold, though she didn't complain of it, and did her work just as usual until last Friday. On my return from town about five o'clock, she complained of headache and giddiness. I told her that she had better warm herself, make some tea, and go to bed at once, and hoped she would be better in the morning. She did so, and slept all night. On Saturday morning she was much better, and made three beds, and laid down off and on during the remainder of the day. In the evening she said she had been subject to fits, would I give her some castor oil. I gave her two spoonfuls. My bedroom is separated from hers by the kitchen, which is small, and I heard her that night occasionally moaning in bed. I called but to her several times, "What is the matter, Maggie? Are you worse?" She said, "My head is very sore." I told her to try and sleep again and the oil might remove that. She slept afterwards. On Sunday she seemed better, but very weak. She got up, sitting in the kitchen, and looked at books, and went to bed the rest of the day from about twelve noon. She ate quite heartily until the day of her death—that is, she had tea and toast, soup, thin gruel with a little brandy. On Saturday she had chops and potatoes, which she eat heartily. I made the soup for her, and gave her part of all my meals, and this up to the day of her death. She had some tea and cake for tea on Sunday afternoon in her bed, my daughter Edith taking it to her. About seven or eight o'clock she seemed much worse, and said, "Oh, I'm so giddy." She put her hand across her chest, and said she felt pain there. I gave her some brandy, and told her she had better sleep. I asked her if I could do anything else for her. She slept then for some hours, until five on Thursday morning, and was then very restless and moaning. I then went into her bedroom and found her, as it were, trying to wipe, some mess up from the floor. She said, "I'm suffering from diarrhoea awfully." I gave her about three tablespoonfuls of brandy. When I came back with the brandy she stood up and then sat on her bed for a while. She was very giddy and falling about; could not support herself. I had to put my arm round her while she drank the brandy. She then slept until half-past eight. She had breakfast then—tea and bread and butter, just a very thin slice. I asked her if she would like to see her mother, as I was getting nervous, or if I should send her home in a cab. She said "No," as her time was nearly up and it would only frighten her mother. I thought it would only be cruel to send her home in that state, as I had had her so long. She was so much better all Monday, staying in the kitchen part of the day, and dressed. She went to bed about two in the afternoon. She took soup for dinner, or rather beef tea and barley, and toast with it. She had her tea about six. She slept quite well the whole night. On the Tuesday morning she was not so well again - more giddy; fell down when walking from the bedroom into the kitchen, scratching her face and ears which were bleeding, and cut her lips. She fell several times in the passage, as if from weakness or giddiness. I think she hurt herself doing these falls. She had for dinner the usual beef tea with toast: At the time she seemed much better, and got up and had her tea buttered toast (one slice) and a cup of tea. After sitting about ten minutes she said, "Oh ! I'm so giddy, so giddy." I said,  "You'd better go to bed again." That morning (Tuesday), as she was so giddy and I could not help her about, I thought it better to put her a mattrass on the floor of the children's play-room. She went to bed after tea. I was obliged to hold her along the best way I could, and lay her down in, her clothes. She was very restless until 10. When I came to bed she complained of pain in her stomach. I gave her brandy, and she then slept. Heard no more until between 3 and 4 on Wednesday morning, when I was awoke by a violent noise of tumbling and moaning, and went and found her tumbling about in all directions—for how long I don't know. I think a large cut on her forehead was caused by her striking against the sharp edge of a teak box. She said, "Oh! oh! oh my!" and would push about her arms. I was with her in this state for an hour.  I saw her knock herself about against everything in the room. I saw  her cut herself in this manner. When I first entered the room, she was standing. She would constantly stand up, and fall immediately. She would not stay anywhere still. She seemed delirious and wild, as though she had a fit. I could not'hold her. I struggled with her in this way for about an hour. The children were all in bed. Edith heard the noise, but I shut her in the bedroom, as I didn't like her to see anything of the sort. At last I got her to lie on her stomach, and thought I would give her a quantity of brandy—half a large tumbler full without water. She swallowed it and slept. I then went back to bed until about six. I got up then, and found her still sleeping. She woke, and I asked her if I should make her some gruel. She said she was "much better," but spoke softly, with a far away kind of look in her eyes. I gave her two or three teaspoonfuls of gruel—pouring them into her mouth. I left her for a short time, a quarter of an hour—and, on my return, found, the room in a most distressing state from purging, vomiting, and a thick white substance mixed with the purging. On the Monday she went out in the verandah for a short time. I wrote to her mother immediately, then, by my little girl on her way to the High School, and tried to send a telegram by a boy cavalier. I also sent a message by two boys. Before this I had put Mrs Lennan and Mrs Brooks in the room with her. She never spoke after that. I did not think it necessary to send for medical advice, as I didn't think her seriously ill. She was in the habit of going about with dirty venty slippers and no stockings on, and it is possible that the so-called scratches are chaps from the weather. I partly dragged the blanket from under her so as to free her from the diarrhoea discharge. When Mrs McIntyre came, she said—"You wicked woman, what have you been doing with my daughter, treating her as a brute ?" She was very violent in her language. I first sent for Mrs Lennan, and asked her to send her boy for the first doctor. Dr Batchelor came, and said she was in a dying state, and thought it would be as well to see another medical gentleman. He brought Dr Reimer in about 20 minutes. They wrote a prescription which seemed to revive her a little. The doctor saw her again about 6 in the evening, and advised the same treatment, with the addition of an injection of beef tea, all which was done. She dined at 11.30, and went to bed at 3 on Thursday morning. When Mr McIntyre came on that morning, I said to him I would rather give £500 than that there should be an inquest, meaning thereby that I did not like any such unpleasant proceedings, and that I would rather have given £2000 than that such a thing should have happened at my place. I can't say who took in the milk on Wednesday morning, or for a few days previous, though she did on the Sunday morning. The broken windows were in the children's playroom, and were for ventilation. They were pasted up after the mother came, because she complained of the cold. I am quite sure that she has been gradually getting thinner since she came to me. The mother told me that about 12 months ago she had got something from the Hospital for diarrhoea, and that the lips were then pale. She went to St. Matthew's Church and the Sunday School on Sundays.  It was quite voluntary on her part that she did not go home.
Dr Reimer: I was called on to attend Margaret McIntyre. This was at about noon, I got there first. Mrs Reid took me into a private parlour, having put her arms around my neck, asked me to please to avoid an inquest if possible. I said that was not what I came for, and asked where was the patient. She then showed me into a room at the end of the passage, and I saw the girl lying on a mattrass. I felt the pulse, but it was imperceptible. I examined the heart with the stethescope, but the sound was of a "fluttering" nature. Mrs Reid was present, and I told Dr Batchelor that it was no use—that the girl was dying— and added that we might give her some stimulants. We then prescribed ammonia and aether, and I left, as I knew the girl could not live many hours. When we did prescribe, it was only done with a view of soothing the dying person in the unfortunate state in which she was.
To Mr Stout: When I went in, Mrs Reid appeared frantic, and did not seem to know what she was talking about.
Isabella Esplin: I am in the service of Mrs Bell, Upper Walker street. I know Mrs Reid's place. About ten or twelve days before Margaret McIntyre's death, I saw her on the verandah of Mrs Reid's house shaking some pieces of carpet. Mrs Reid came out and said something to her in an angry tone, and boxed her ears, pulled her hair, and thumped her with her fists. I am sure that it was with her closed fists. She struck her on the back. She kicked her, and shoved her down, upon the verandah, and caught her by the hair of the head and dragged her into the house and slammed the door behind her. Two or three days before that I saw the girl digging in the garden with a spade. Mrs Reid was in this garden watching her. I was only passing at the time, I could not see what she was digging. I do not know whether Margaret McIntyre did anything before Mrs Reid attacked her. I was in Mrs Bell's garden when I saw the girl shaking carpets. Margaret McIntyre had been shaking the carpets for two or three minutes before Mrs Reid came out.
To Mr Stout: I never spoke to Margaret McIntyre. I could not hear what was said.
Lewis Harris: I am a miner, and live in Maitland street. I know Mrs Reid's house well, and live close to it. I noticed several children about Mrs Reid's place and in the garden. I never saw Margaret McIntyre but did see the previous servant girl. I remember hearing a noise coming from Mrs Reid's premises.
His Honour asked how far was that evidence against Mrs Reid. Would noises coming from Mrs Reid's house be evidence against her?
Mr Haggitt thought that it would. His Honour could not say but that it was some evidence, as showing a course of treatment.
Mr Stout did not think it was evidence.
His Honour thought if there was evidence that Mrs Reid and the girl were living in the house at the time, and if it was suggested that no other adult persons were present, noises might be evidence. Mr Stout contended that the prosecution should lay the foundation for the question by showing that there was no other adult person present, and that Mrs Reid was there. 
His Honour said the question was, had he enough upon his notes to make this line of inquiry relevant. 
The witness then stood down, and Mr Haggitt then called Edith Reid, for the purpose of showing who was in the house at the time the witness heard the noises.
Edith Margaret Helena Reid: I remember Margaret McIntyre. She was in my mother's service. She was there for three months. The same people always lived there. They were only my mamma, four brothers, myself and Margaret. My brothers are all younger than I. Margaret McIntyre always slept at our place. My mamma used to go to bed about 10 o'clock. Margaret used to go about the same time as mamma. I used sometimes to go to bed a little earlier. I am sure that no strange person slept in the house for a month before Margaret died. Margaret used to sleep in the servant's room. That is in the one in which she died. She slept one night in the playroom. I saw her lying in that room.'I first saw her in it on Tuesday evening. I did not speak to her, I was passing the room. She was in bed on the mattrass at the time. This was during the evening and war after I returned from school. It was about 8 in the evening when I saw her in that room. She was lying on two mattrasses. They were small ones, and nothing was projecting from them. I sleep in my mother's bed. There are two or three mattrasses in my mother's bed.
Some discussion here arose as to what the word "mattrass" meant, and His Honour sent for a dictionary.
The witness: The window in the playroom had been broken for some time. 
To Mr Stout: There was a pane broken in the window of the nursery, in which my brothers slept. Maggie used to go to church up to the two last Sundays before she died. She used to take my youngest brother. She was first unwell on Friday. I saw her at teatime and took tea to her. She was out of bed on Saturday. I was up before her on Sunday. On the Wednesday morning I was awakened between three and four o'clock. I heard a. noise, but I do not know where it was. I never saw my mother beat Maggie, but I saw my brother George hit her with a stick on the leg on Good Friday. 
Mr. Haggitt: When was Good Friday 
His Honour: You can get it from the Almanac. 
The witness: I remember that it was on Good Friday.
Mr, Haggitt: What makes you recollect it was Good Friday?
The witness: My brother went to church after he had struck her. Maggie went to Sunday School once, but I do not recollect when it was. She sat near me the day she went to Sunday School. 
Lewis Harris, recalled: About three weeks before the death of the girl I heard noises coming from Mrs Reid's house at midnight.I was in the water closet, which is close to the dividing fence, and about fifteen feet from Mrs Reid's bedroom.
Mr Haggitt: What more did you hear? Mr Stout objected that the question was not admissible.
His Honour: Suppose that the answer shall be that the noise was that of adults. There is the evidence of Edith Reid as who were in he house. She said that the only adult persons in the house were Mrs Reid and the servant.
Mr Haggitt: The inference would be that Mrs Reid was ill-using the servant, or the servant ill-using Mrs Reid. Mr, Stout; submitted that such was not the inference. 
His Honour would not say, but this evidence might have some effect on the minds of the Jury, taken in connection with the other evidence which had been given. Mr Stout submitted that the evidence would not be relevant. The Crown had no right-to use such an inference. 
His Honour said that the Crown probably wished to show that a scene of violence was going on between two adult persons. If so, he did not see how it was irrelevant. If it would prove irrelevant, it could not prejudice a common sense Jury. 
The witness: I heard a struggling noise, as if two persons were fighting and engaged in a personal conflict. They were rushing backwards and forwards in a room, and I heard the sound as of blows. They were blows either given by a stick or whip. Mrs Reid's house is built of timber. I heard a prolonged outcry all the time the blows were given. It was the ejaculation of a person getting thrashed. I am positive that it was the cry of an adult person. I pushed open the door of the closet and looked through, but I could see nothing. There was a light in what I think was Mrs Reid's bedroom. The noise proceeded from the opposite side of the house, noises and groans followed afterwards for the space of a few minutes. That is, while I was listening. -Otago DailyTimes, 14/7/1877.

"...not unmarked by a few ludicrous incidents."

THE REID TRIAL
THE SPECIAL JURY.
MRS. REID'S APPEARANCE AND DEMEANOUR.
INCIDENTS OF THE TRIAL.
THE EVIDENCE,
THE COUNSELS' ADDRESSES.
THE JUDGE'S SUMMING UP.
THE JURY LOCKED UP ALL NIGHT.
THE VERDICT—NOT GUILTY!
The most exciting event in Dunedin for some time past was undoubtedly the trial last week of Mrs G. F. Reid, who was charged with the manslaughter of her servant, Margaret McIntyre. No trial which has taken place in Dunedin since that of Capt. Jarvey for the murder of his wife has attracted so much notice. That such was the case was no doubt owing to the social position of the accused in the present instance, and to the peculiar circumstances which characterised the case generally. Her trial was originally fixed to take place at the same time as those of the other prisoners who had to appear before the Supreme Court at its recent criminal sittings. Her senior counsel, Mr Stout, however, thought it would be unadvisable to commit her liberty to the keeping of any twelve of the usual class of "good men and true" who take their seats in the Dunedin jury-box for the purpose of deciding the fate and fortunes of those who may be given into their charge. The application for a Special Jury was granted, and the delay consequent thereupon had this further effect that, owing to recent well-known judicial arrangements, the presiding Judge was Mr Justice Johnson, whose skill in dealing with intricate cases, especially those involving nice points of evidence, is well known. Anyone who will carefully peruse the evidence and the summing up given at the trial, will, we think, come to the conclusion that though Mrs Reid's chance of acquittal was increased by the case having been tried by a Special Jury, the change of judges did not produce a like effect. Indeed, we have heard a member of the Bar state that the presiding Judge started by giving a definition of manslaughter, and throughout the proceedings put questions to the witnesses for the purpose of supporting that definition. Of course, it must not be supposed for a moment that we agree with this remark, or that his Honour's definition was anything else but sound law, or that he asked any questions other than those necessary to meet the ends of justice, and for the complete elucidation of the case.
Thursday of last week was the day fixed for the trial. The proceedings opened at 10 o'clock, and after the usual preliminaries on such occasions, Mrs Reid, who had surrendered to her bail, took her place in the prisoners' dock. She seemed comparatively unmoved, except when the governor of the gaol threw open the door of the dock, and she was mounting the steps to enter it. She then appeared to feel, to some extent, the humiliation of her position, and the trying ordeal through which she was about to pass. She was indicted, both on the bill found by the Grand Jury and also on the Coroner's inquisition. On these documents being read over to her, and on her being asked how she pleaded, on each occasion she replied, in a firm tone of voice, "Not Guilty." She was fashionably dressed during the trial, and at the request of her counsel, she was allowed to sit down. During the examination of one cf the first witnesses she appeared slightly excited, and hastily wrote a memo. She leant over the dock for the purpose of handing it to her junior counsel, Mr Denniston. The door of the dock, by some omission, had been unfastened, and had it not been for the assistance of the gentleman just named, she would have fallen out rather heavily. To judge from appearances, Mrs Reid is not of an emotional nature, and whatever her feelings were throughout the trial, they found no expression, beyond the casting of a keen and penetrating gaze on the witnesses for the prosecution, and the manifesting of a marked interest in the interjections and summing up of the learned Judge.
The usual solemnity and awe incidental to the investigations of serious crimes in the higher Courts of English Law, of course, prevailed on this occasion even more intensely than is usually the case. We have heard it said that counsel, in addressing juries, even on the most solemn occasions, are privileged, if they so please, to add force and vividness to their remarks by illustrating them with poetical quotations. Upon the same principle then, no doubt, Judges claim and exercise the privilege of making jokes and indulging in witty remarks, even while presiding over an inquiry upon the result of which the life or liberty of one who is before them depends. It is not long since in Dunedin a Judge of the Supreme Court, in passing a sentence of 15 years' penal servitude on a man for an attempt to commit murder, grimly told him "that when he would regain his liberty he would find honesty to be the best policy." There were not many jokes cracked on the occasion of Mrs Reid's trial, but nevertheless it was not unmarked by a few ludicrous incidents. 
One of the first incidents calling for observation was a complaint made by one of the jurymen of the existence of an intolerable stench in the neighbourhood of the jury-box. "Well," said his Honour, who does not appear to have a very high appreciation of the Dunedin Court-House, or of either its arrangements or conveniences, "I never know what I have to put up with when I come in here." A diversion then of a few minutes took place, in the course of which the more serious business of the Court was laid aside for the time being, and Judge, Sheriff, and Jury by questions, looks, and other modes of research, endeavoured to find out what was the head and front of this offending. The Crown Prosecutor suggested that it was dogs, while His Honour appeared to be of opinion that some of the sewerage of the city was finding an outlet under the jury box. But the Sheriff disabused them of that idea, and in an almost pathetic manner assured the Court "that there was no drain there." His Honour suggested that a tin of chloride of lime should be obtained for the purpose of removing the annoyance of which he said the Jury had very justly complained. The next noteworthy matter which occurred took place after the adjournment on Thursday. The lunch of the Jury, it would seem, had been of a most frugal character, and they, knowing that they would be locked up for the night, appeared to be deeply apprehensive lest "coming events had been casting their shadows before." The Foreman informed his Honour that the quality of their repast had been by no means what it ought to have been, and to use a somewhat forcible 
The learned Judge's summing up was concluded at 9 o'clock on Friday evening, and the Court remained crowded up till past 12 o'clock with spectators, not a few of whom were females. It is to be hoped that they were enjoying themselves, but whether this was the case or not, the Sheriff determined that their curiosity should remain unsatisfied for that evening, for he ordered the Court to be cleared, and thus compelled them to spend their time elsewhere. When the jury retired at 12 o'clock, they informed the Judge that there was no prospect of their agreeing that night or the next day. When they were leaving the Court, his Honour told them that he did not feel justified in ordering them refreshments. But when he did so, one juryman who no doubt profited by the adjournment which had taken place in the evening, and who was probably determined to reduce the oath that they should be kept without meat, drink, and so forth, to a nullity, addressing his right hand confrere, said, in a most significant voice, "We don't want any refreshments." 
A little before 3 o'clock on Saturday morning, when our reporter visited the Court to ascertain if the Jury had agreed upon their verdict, he heard one of them endeavouring to persuade the others to his way of thinking by reciting, with considerable elocutionary skill and emphasis, marked by bringing his hand heavily on some piece of furniture, Mrs. Heman's poem of "Bernardo del Carpio." 
At 9 a.m. on Saturday the Judge again visited the Court, but the Jury had not agreed. He, however, gave them some further directions, and after an absence of 20 minutes they returned into Court, and in answer to the usual interrogation, they replied, "Not Guilty;" and the prisoner left the dock, again free.  Otago Witness, 21/7/1877.

Martha Reid was not punished by the legal system for the death of Margret McIntyre.  But I have been told that she was ostracised by Dunedin society for her treatment of her servant.  There was also criticism at the time of what might have amounted to a "stacked jury."  Martha Reid is not buried in a Dunedin cemetery as far as I know.  This supports the idea that she found Dunedin an inhospitable city after her acquittal.


Breach of the Peace.
— John McLaren was charged with having used language calculated to provoke a breach of the peace on Saturday night. Constable Lyons said that the accused was delivering a speech at the Cargill Monument on Saturday night. The subject of his discourse was Mrs Reid's trial, and he had a large number of people about him. He said the Jury was stacked, that they were all Masons, and that their conduct was villainous, and a disgrace to the community at large. He also called Mr Stout, counsel for Mrs Reid, by various abusive terms. The constable's object in arresting accused was to prevent a breach of the peace, as he thought that if any partizans of Mrs Reid and Mr Stout had been present they might have assaulted the accused. Constable Hannah gave corroborative evidence. The accused admitted using rather strong language, he having been requested to speak on the subject, concerning which there had been a great deal of indignation expressed by the public. He was in the habit of speaking at the Monument, but, if the Bench ruled that he was not to do so in future, he would, of course, submit to their decision. He did not allude to Mr Stout in the manner indicated by the arresting constable, whom he thought had misunderstood the meaning of his words. He had gone no further than an article which appeared in one of the morning papers. He denied, in answer to the Bench, having been before the Court on ten previous charges. McLaren here asked for an adjournment, to enable him to get witnesses, but on the Bench requiring substantial bail, he elected to be dealt with at once. The Bench considered the case proved, and inflicted a fine of 40s, or in default, 48 hours' imprisonment. The fine was paid.  -Otago Daily Times, 17/7/1877.


Monday, 16th July. (Before His Worship the Mayor and J. Black. Esq., J.P.) Breach of the Peace. —John McLaren was charged with having used language calculated to provoke a breach of the peace on Saturday night. Constable Lyons said that the accused was delivering a speech at the Cargill Monument on Saturday night. The subject of his discourse was Mrs Reid's trial, and he had a large number of people about him. He said the Jury was packed, that they were all Masons, and that their conduct was villainous, and a disgrace to the community at large. He also called Mr Stout, counsel for Mrs Reid, by various abusive terms. The constable's object in arresting accused was to prevent a breach of the peace, as he thought that if any partizans of Mrs Reid and Mr Stout had been present they might have assaulted the accused.  -Otago Witness, 21/7/1877.


"heartless, inhuman, fiendish "

In an outspoken article on Mrs Reid's trial at Dunedin, the Otago Guardian concludes: -The mistress of Margaret McIntyre now goes forth acquitted by law of the crime for which she was charged, and her guilt or innocence are now between her conscience and her God. Wherever she is, and by whatever circumstances surrounded, we think a dark memory will throw its shadow over her path, and the mere exemption from a few years of imprisonment—which might have been the extreme penalty if she had been convicted—is a trivial thing by the side of the ever present past. Nor will she bear with her the solace of sympathy. If we sought for reason for this unexpected verdict, outside of the convictions of jurors, we might lay something to the account of sympathy for the memory of her dead husband and for her more than orphan children. But sympathy for herself we are sure has found no place either within or without the jury room. In the whole circumstances there is not one solitary feature to awaken pity for the accused herself. Viewed in any light, and apart from the death itself, the treatment given to the unhappy servant was heartless, inhuman, fiendish and wherever or whenever the accused but now acquitted mistress may go from this community, her memory will remain a thing of shame, and her name will be a bye-word and a warning.  -Western Star, 28/7/1877.


So, what is my opinion of what went on in the Reid house?  It is inconsequential, of course.  The actors of this sad play are long gone.  Martha Reid may have been under intolerable strain when Margaret McIntyre joined her household.  In such situations it is often the case that frustrations are taken out on those least able to retaliate or defend themselves.  Margaret was beaten by her mistress and also by her mistress' son.  Was he passing the violence on, having received it from his mother?

As to the composition of the jury and its part in Martha's acquittal, it seems that a tiny battle in the class war was occurring here.  Margaret McIntyre was a servant, Martha Reid was her mistress and many had the opinion then that people needed to know their place in the world.  

There were no winners in this tragic affair but 17 year old Margaret McIntyre was the one who lost the most.  Beaten, starved, dissected  and denied justice post mortem - my heart is heavy, as I write this, for Margaret McIntyre.  Born in Scotland, died in Dunedin - and hardly lived at all.


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