DOVER KENT ARCHIVES

Sort file:- Chatham, December, 2018.

Page Updated:- Friday, 21 December, 2018.

PUB LIST PUBLIC HOUSES Paul Skelton

Earliest 1831-

Bear and Staff

Latest ????

High Street (St Margaret's Bank Pigot's Directory 1832-34)

Chatham

 

This pub is in an area where Rochester and Chatham merge, and I have found reference to it being addressed as both.

I also have reference to a "Bear" in the High Street, which may be the same pub as this. A report in an 1847 directory called this the "Bear and Ragged Staff", with the address of St. Margaret's Bank and in 1851 the same situated in Chatham Intra.

In 1864 Superintendent Radley of the city police tried to shut down seven pubs as prostitution was rife in the area.

 

 

South Eastern Gazette 06 December 1831.

MARRIED.

Nov. 21, at St. Margaret's Church, Rochester, Mr. John Marsh to Mrs. Fanny Tupper, of the "Bear and Staff," Chatham.

 

South Eastern Gazette - Tuesday 12 May 1840.

The stabbing case coroner's inquest.

On Wednesday morning a coroner's jury assembled at the "Bear and Staff" public house, where the murdered man, Grigg, was lying. Throughout the examination, the house, and outside, were literally besieged by persons anxious to take a look at the prisoner, who was brought into the inquest room handcuffed, and sobbing loudly; he appeared to be about 17 years of age, rather tall and slender, and his countenance evidently bespoke his feelings on the present occasion.

The Prisoner was accompanied with a chair, and seemed to pay every attention to the witnesses examinations; he was professionally assisted by Mr. T. Patten; and Mr. Edward Birch attended to watch the proceedings on behalf of the deceased's friends.

The Coroner R. Hinde, Esq. having sworn the jury, they repaired to the room where the corps was lying; the body appeared to have been that of a fine young man, and was lying on a table in the parlour; the wound was in the thigh.

The first witness called was Edwin Page Williams, who deposed as follows:- I am a labourer, and reside in St Margaret's, Rochester. I was walking down the High Street, Chatham, on Saturday evening, about half-past ten, with the deceased, and some other young men. There was some boys, among whom was the prisoner, standing at the bottom of Chapel Lane, and one called out "Who kicked the boy when he was down?" I do not know who it was who called out. One of the boys said, "It's the chap with the bush!" Another said "It's the chap with a frock!" Deceased said to Edward John Thomas, the prisoner. "Have you anything to say to me?" Thomas said, "I am not speaking to you." Deceased said, "I wish you not to mention my name," and then walked away. Before he got cross the road, Thomas called out, "I know you, you b------ soldier-dealer!" Deceased then went back, and struck at Thomas, but I don't know whether he hit him or not. Thomas then fell or sat down on the kerb stones. Some of the boys called out, "Kick his shins!" meaning for deceased who was standing over Thomas, who then struck at a boy name Chaney, with his fist. Chaney fell to avoid the blow. Deceased stumbled, but did not fall. Thomas got up, walked a few steps, and used some expressions which I did not understand. Deceased went to Thomas and struck him, and Thomas fell down. Deceased said "Stand up, and let me have a round or two with you."

Thomas said, "If I was as big as you, you would not hit me."

Deceased then turned around and said. "He has stabbed me, or words to that effect," and immediately staggered and fell.

I said to Thomas. "You are all right, old boy, you have done it now." And assisted deceased to the kerb, and ask someone to go for a doctor.

I saw blood on deceased's trousers. I saw no more of Thomas. I assisted to remove deceased to the "Bear and Staff" public house, and Mr. Robertson, the surgeon, came immediately. We were all sober, when we were going down the street.

By the Jury:- Did not see the deceased take hold of the prisoner, and endeavour to hold him up. When the boys called out to deceased, he had a frock on, and I furze bush in his hand.

By Mr. Patten:- Chaney was standing about half way across the road when deceased stood over the prisoner.

George Thornton, aged 15, sworn, was standing at the door for his master, Mr. Thomas, the grocer, on Saturday evening last, at half-past ten. A boy name Samuel Thomas, brother of the prisoner, came into the shop for some sugar. Samuel Thomas went to the door, and called out, "Who kicked the boy when he was down?"

Grid, the deceased, who was walking to and fro by the door, took no notice of S. Thomas for some time.

F. J. Thomas, the prisoner, was standing at the bottom of Chapel Lane. The deceased struck Thomas, the prisoner, with his fists. As deceased was going off, Thomas said, "You can have a dozen if you like."

Deceased did not come back.

The prisoner then called him a b------ soldiers-dealer, whereupon deceased came back, and hit Thomas again with his fists. Thomas sat on kerb stone at the time. A boy named Chaney was standing in the road, and called out, "Kick him." Deceased then ran at Chaney and made a hit at him, but missed him. Chaney fell, and deceased fell over him, on his hands. And his deceased was getting up Thomas cried out "Oh! you b------ soldier-dealer."

Deceased then ran at Thomas, and Thomas Cried Out. "Don't hit me when down." Deceased attempted to lift him by his arms, and had got him on his knees when he suddenly let Thomas fall and called out "He has run a knife into me." Deceased stood a short time with his hands on his knee, and fell down with his face on the step of Mr. Thomas's door. Some one removed him from the step, and set him on the kerb.

He immediately fell backwards, and was removed to the "Bear and Staff." Witness was there about three feet from the deceased, at the time he fell. Did not see him throw anything away, all strike at deceased. Witness went down into his master's seller, about 20 minutes after this happened, with Tupper the constable, and some other person's. Picked up a knife; it was a clasp-knife, with a short handle, and shut. Gave the knife to Tupper. There was blood upon it, at the tip, and on the back.

John Tassell, No 18, Rochester police, apprehended the prisoner at his father's house at 1 o'clock, on Sunday morning. I only found 4d. upon him. I minutely examined the clothes of the prisoner, but found no marks of blood upon them.

Mr. A. Robertson:- I am a surgeon and resign at Chatham. About half-past ten, on Saturday evening, I was sent for to attend of deceased. I immediately attended, and found him at the "Bear and Staff." I examine deceased. He was quite dead. There was a wound in the groin. I have since made a post mortem examination of the body. I found the femoral artery severed; and the femoral vein partially divided. The haemorrhage from them was the cause of death. The wound had been inflicted by a sharp instrument. It was 7 inches and a quarter in length, across the thigh, and 3 inches in depth. Such a knife as the one produced would cause the wound.

The Coroner's them briefly address the jury, who, after a short consultation, returned a verdict of "Manslaughter against Edward John Thomas;" and he was committed, on the Coroner's warrant, to take his trial at the next and assizes.

The deceased youth was buried on Sunday afternoon; the whole line of road leading to the burial ground, and the ground itself, was crowded. He was followed by his mother and Sullivan, his father-in-law, one brother and three sisters.

 

Canterbury Journal, Kentish Times and Farmers' Gazette, Saturdat 16 May, 1840.

Rochester and Chatham. Murder at Chatham.

We gave in our last, the particulars of this melancholy affair. The following is the result of the Coroner's Inquest on the murdered man:-

On Wednesday morning it became known, that a Coroner's Jury would assemble at the "Bear and Staff" public house, where the murdered man, Grigg, was lying; the hour for holding the inquest was stated to be 11 o'clock, and a number of persons were soon collected, and throughout the examination the house, and outside, were literally besieged by persons anxious to take a look at the prisoner, who was brought into the inquest room handcuffed, and sobbing loudly; he appeared to be about 17 years of age, rather tall and slender, and his countenance evidently bespoke his feelings of the present occasion. The prisoner was accommodated with a chair, and seemed to pay every attention to the witnesses examination; he was professionally assisted by Mr. T. Patton; and Mr. Edward Birch attended to watch the proceedings on behalf of the deceased's friends.

The Coroner, R. Hinde, Esq., having sworn the jury, they repaired to the room where the corps was lying; the body appeared to have been that of a fine young man, and was lying on a table in the parlour; the wound was in the right thigh.

Witnesses having been examined, Mr. Archibald Robertson, surgeon, residing in Chatham, said:- I was sent for to attend the deceased on Saturday night last about half past 10 o'clock; I attended immediately and found the man dead. I examined the body, there was a wound in the right groin; I have since made a post mortem examination; the femoral artery was cut asunder, and the femoral vein partially. The haemorrhage from each vessel caused death. The wound appeared to have been done with a sharp cutting instrument; the wound was 2 and a quarter inches in length across the thigh, and 3 inches in depth. The knife produced would have caused such a wound.

The prisoner was asked by the Coroner whether he meant to say anything; he answered, he left all to his solicitor. The prisoner, however, by the advice of his professional adviser, stated to the court, that the mark under his eye, was made by the deceased, John Grigg, and that he hit him twice; that was all he wished to say.

The Coroner having briefly charged the Jury, and pointed out the difference in law between murder and manslaughter, he left the case in their hands. The Jury, after some time, returned a verdict unanimously of manslaughter against the prisoner. The investigation lasted 5 hours. The prisoner was conveyed back to the station house, followed by a large mob of people at about 7 o'clock. The body of Grigg was removed from the public house in a coffin to his parents residence on the Brook, followed by 2 or 3 hundred persons. The event has caused the greatest excitement, throughout the three towns. The prisoner's father works for Mr. Watson, a sail-maker, and has a large family.

 

LICENSEE LIST

TOSER E 1828+ (Pigot's Directory 1828-29 Bear and Ragged Staff)

TUPPEY Fanny 1832+ Pigot's Directory 1832-34

CLIFFORD John 1838+ Wright's Topography 1838

UNDERHILL Joseph 1841+ (age 45 in 1841Census)

CLIFFORD John 1847+

KING George 1851+ (also vet age 36 in 1851Census)

GOBLE C T 1855+

UNDERHILL Joseph 1858+

http://www.pubshistory.com/BearStaff.shtml

 

Pigot's Directory 1832-34From the Pigot's Directory 1832-33-34

CensusCensus

Wright's Topography 1838Wright's Topography 1838

 

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