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Background and Aftermath

12 Kimbolton Road May 2009
12 Kimbolton Road May 2009

Frederick William Budd was born on 9th August 1823 [Z951/2/13 where he is called Frederic] he was thus 39 at the time of his death. The 1861 shows him living at Well Street, Buckingham and shows that he was born in Bedford. His wife, Frances Mary, aged 34 was born in Guernsey. They had a servant called Martha Clifford, aged 25 who had been born in Oxfordshire. They had no children. Clearly they moved to 12 Kimbolton Road some time between this and his death in May 1863

The site of 5 Saint Pauls Square seen in May 2009 - this part of Shire Hall being built in 1910
The site of 5 Saint Paul's Square seen in May 2009 - this part of Shire Hall being built in 1910

His friend Henry Pulley was the same age as the 1861 census describes him as 37. He, too, had been born in Bedford and was an auctioneer and unmarried. He lived at 5 Saint Paul’s Square (now under Shire Hall) with his mother Jane, a widow, aged 60 who had been born in Middlesex, and his unmarried sister, Sophia, aged 29, who had also been born in Bedford. They had a servant, Sarah Jackson, aged 19, who had been born in Turvey. The census also shows Thomas Simmons Trapp, who was aged 56 and manager of the London & County Bank. He was another born in Bedford and his 56 year old wife Caroline had been born in Kempston. They lived at 83 High Street (now part of the National Westminster Bank) with their cook Elizabeth Horton, 27, and servants Rebecca Horton, aged 14 and William Horton, aged 16, all of whom had been born at Caxton in Cambridgeshire.

 William Craddock in the Bedford Gaol Register [QGV10/4]
William Craddock in the Bedford Gaol Register [QGV10/4]

The Bedford Gaol registers give some details on the two defendants and the two of their associates. William Craddock was described as 33, 5 feet 5½ inches in height with dark hair, dark eyes and a sallow, oval visage. He had two scars on his right eyebrow, one on his upper lip, a scar on his left thumb, two scars on his left forefinger and a very freckled face. He was a carpenter with an imperfect education, who was married and had been born in Kempston. He was then living at 11 The Grove - part of a development for artisans built between about 1840 and 1850 [QGV10/4]. Thus his quickest route home from the Rifle on that fateful night was through Ram Yard and along Castle Lane, he might then have gone up Saint Cuthbert's Street and along Grove Place - a substantially similar route to the Budds, or along Castle Road and up The Grove.

9 and 11 The Grove May 2009
9 and 11 The Grove May 2009

Robert Jordan was just 21, 5 feet 6½ inches tall, with dark brown hair, grey eyes and a fair complexion. He had several scars on his left thigh and shin and on both arms, he also had small round scars on his forehead. He was a shoeing smith with an imperfect education and was single. He had been born in Bedford and was living in Rose Yard - he presumably lived with his father as that is where P. C. Pedley arrested him. This probably accounts for the description of him going and speaking to a woman who lived down a short flight of steps in the yard she was, presumably, a neighbour [QGV10/4].

 Robert Jordan in the Bedford Gaol Register [QGV10/4]
Robert Jordan in the Bedford Gaol Register [QGV10/4]

At the time of the 1861 census Robert Jordan was living at 6 Paradine Court with his father Gilbert, a shoeing smith and farrier who had been born in Bedford. His mother Lucy was 44 and had been born in Sharnbrook. the same census shows William Craddock at 11 The Grove where he lived with his wife Catherine, aged 29, who had been born in East Acton. They had three daughters, Charlotte, aged 6 who had been born in Bedford, Amy, aged 3 who had been born in Dunton and Emily, just one month, who had been born in Bedford. Craddock was described as a carpenter.

 Thomas Jenkins in the Bedford Gaol Register [QGV10/4]
Thomas Jenkins in the Bedford Gaol Register [QGV10/4]

Richard Keeler does not have an extended gaol register entry and is simply noted as aged 25 [QGV12/1]. Thomas Jenkins has a much fuller description – he was 39, the same age as Budd, 5 feet 1¼ inches tall with black hair and described as “a man of colour”. He had a “hurl” on the back and a scar on his left eyebrow. He was described as a ship’s cook of imperfect education and a Methodist. He was married and had been born in Louisville, Alabama. Alabama, was one of the Confederate States during the American Civil War which was raging at the time of Budd’s death. Indeed, the battle which formed the turning point in the fortunes of the two sides, Gettysburg, was fought from 1st to 3rd July 1863. The war ended in 1865 with defeat for the southern, Confederate, states and the emancipation of slaves across the United States of America.

Edward Hatton was not imprisoned but the 1861 census describes him as aged 48, a domestic coachman who had been born in Sheffield. He was then living in Commercial Road, Bedford, with his 42 year old wife, Maria, who had been born in Brighton. They had three daughters – Emma, a 21 year old milliner who had been born in Manchester, Elizabeth A., a 19 year old dressmaker who had been born in Ireland and another Elizabeth, a 16 year old apprentice who had been born in Scotland. They had one son, Edwin, aged 15, a scholar who had been born in Manchester.

Sergeant Matthew Pedley with other members of the Borough force about 1875
Sergeant Matthew Pedley with other members of the Borough force about 1875 [Z49/836 - detail]

P.C. Pedley was P. C. 33 Matthew Pedley who was born on 25th May 1825 at Chatteris [Cambridgeshire] and joined the Bedford Borough Police force on 18th October 1855 (thus his evidence about having about eight years service). He had previously served nine months in the Bedfordshire County Constabulary. He was 5 feet 8 inches tall and remained a policeman until retiring on 13th December 1878, aged 53 - he had had a month's leave of absence from 30th october and was certified as being incapable from infirmity of body of discharging his duty. He died on 17th October 1884, aged 59. He, like any policeman of the time, had his share of brushes with authority as well as commendations. A list of both is as follows [FAC163/2/227]:

  • 16th October 1858: he was commended for good work for arresting two men at Wyboston for a burglary in Bedford;
  • 11th January 1859: he was awarded an extra shilling a week for good conduct and courage for arresting a burglar named John Evans;
  • 3rd August 1860: he was placed in the merit class;
  • 4th December 1863: censured for failing to report an incident;
  • 25th November 1865: cautioned for receiving a glass of ale when on night duty;
  • 27th December 1865: he was promoted to sergeant for his general good conduct
  • 24th December 1866: he neglected to report colleagues, P. C. Borsman and P. C. Cooper for being under the influence of liquor - he was ordered to enter every occurrence in his book;
  • 3rd June 1868: he was granted a merit badge;
  • 11th June 1871: he was alleged to have taken roses from a garden at 23 Ampthill Road when on night duty - this was not proven;
  • 20th July 1871: he was allowed to keep a ten shilling gratuity for services given at a fire.

At the time of the 1861 census Pedley was living at 2 Foster Street, Bedford with his wife Elizabeth, aged 35, who had been born in Haddenham [Cambridgeshire]. They had a year old son named Arthur.

1 Goldington Road May 2009
1 Goldington Road May 2009

The 1861 census gives the following information for the other principals in this unhappy story:

  • William Warner was then 16 living in his birthplace of Ridgmont. He was an agricultural labourer living with his father Daniel, 44, an agricultural labourer, his mother Mary, a 43 year oldlace maker and his siblings Ruth, 11, a lacemaker, David aged 8 (born in Bedford the only one of the family not born in Ridgmont), Hanry aged 4 and Arthur aged six months.
  • Thomas Berridge was then 20 and living at the White House in Ridgmont, having been born in Steppingley. He was an agricultural labourer livin gwith his widower father james, 43, also an agricultural labourer and plait maker sisters Lucy aged 21 and Susan aged 15.
  • Frederick Scott was then 18, a straw plaiter, living in his birthplace of Eaton Bray with his agricultural labourer father George, 40 and his step-mother Elizabeth, 29, a straw plaiter who had been born in Totternhoe. His siblings were David, aged 20, a straw plaiter and Amos, 12, another plaiter. He had a sister, or half-sister, Ann, aged 4.
  • James Webster, then 38, was a coal wharf labourer, living at Lamsey Gardens in Leighton Buzzard, where he had been born. His 35 year-old wife, also Leighton Buzzard born, was a plaiter and his children were Hannah, 16, a plaiter, Thomas, 13, a bricklayer's labourer, James, 11, Elizabeth, aged 9 and a plaiter, Charles, aged 6 and a plaiter, Sarah, aged 4 and Elizabeth aged 1, who had been blind since the age of four months.
  • George Hopcroft, was then 18, a shoe binder living in Union Road. He had been born in Aston Abbotts [Buckinghamshire]. He was living with his widowed mother Eliza, 45, who had been born in Oxfordshire, and his siblings Elizabeth, 15, a straw plaiter, Joseph, 10, Laura, 8, Harriett, 6 and William aged 3, all of whom had been born in Aston Abbotts.
  • Robert Couchman was 42 in 1861 and lived at 68 High Street. He was a member of the Royal College of Surgeons and had been born in Hampton-in-Arden [Warwickshire]. He was unmarried. Living with him was his unmarried sister Emily, aged 47 and a mortgagee (her money was lent on mortgage, the interest giving her an income). The servants were Sarah Lawrence, 24, born in Shelton, Elizabeth Allen, 24, born in Harrold and James Saunders, 48, a groom who had been born in Cardington.
  • William Thurnall, 39, had been born at Wittlesford [Cambridgeshire] and was a general practitioner, Member of the Royal College of Surgeons and Licenseate of the Apothecaries' Company. His wife was not at home. His sister Emma, a 47 year old spinster, lived with them as did servants Rebecca Handley, 36, from Cambridgeshire and Mary Ann Fleet, aged 20, born in Bedford.
  • Edward M. Boultbee, then 63, the Chief Constable of the County Police Force, had been born in Rotherby [Leicestershire]and lived at 1 Goldington Road with his wife, Beatrice, aged 50, born in Snaresby [Leicestershire], and his sons Edward Joseph, aged 21, a lieutenant in the 15th Foot, born in Bedford and Frederick, aged 10, a scholar. All three servants came from Coleshill in Warwickshire - Mary Ann Brown, aged 26, the lady's maid, Sarah Hastings, 29, the cook and Emma Dalton, 15, the housemaid. A visitor to the house was John Brown, aged 4, from Coleshill.

Craddock and Jordan were removed to Millbank Prison on 12th August 1863. The 1871 census, again, does not list Jordan anywhere in Bedfordshire but does list Craddock’s wife, now, of course, aged 39, and their three daughters. She now described herself as a widow and was living in Milton Road, Clapham.

Interestingly, Frances Mary Budd married Henry Pulley at St.Mary's, Luton on 16th November 1864, just eighteen months after her husband’s death. Finally, given Thomas Jenkins’ roots in Alabama and the civil war raging in America at the time it is a fascinating coincidence that on the same time Frederick William Budd was attacked and later died of his injuries in Bedford the great Confederate General Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson was also dying of injuries (he had received them when shot by one of his own pickets). He, too, was 39 years old.