Liverpool Journal

Divorce division of the high court before Sir James HANNEN

January 14th, 1882


Petition of Eleanor Harriet INWOOD for separation from her husband, William INWOOD, on the grounds of cruelty. Married 16th Oct, 1873, St Annes Ch, Birkenhead, shortly after, husband carried on business as a pawnbroker in Liverpool. On 17th March 1880, respondent threw a candlestick at his wife’s head, then followed her into a passage, seized her by the throat saying, “Nellie I will be hanged for you.” A number of other assaults occurred the last taking place on the 18th June 1881 when respondent tried to push petitioner down some cellar steps.

Respondent stated acts were in self defence, to prevent his wife pulling his whiskers out, the reason he assigned to her lodging the petition was to protect certain money of which she had expectations. – decree for a judicial separation.

A Kirkdale case


The petitioner the husband a licensed victualler of Kirkdale, for a divorce on the grounds of his wife’s adultery with co-respondent.

Marriage took place on 17th Oct 1870, St Mary’s church, Walton-on-the-Hill. At the time petitioner was a widower with children. He and his wife did not live happily and separated in 1878, owing to her drunken habits and violence. She is now living in Warrington – case proved decree nisi with costs granted.

St Helens case


Petitioner that of the husband Joseph JOHNSON, Borough Treasurer of St Helens, by reason of his wife’s adultery with respondent a labourer.

He was married in 1847 and there were several children of the marriage, all now grown up. Of later years respondent had contracted habits of intemperance. His wife having become unwell , he charged her with being unfaithful and ordered her to leave the house. He made inquiries and instituted the present suit.

James MOORE a glass cutter of St Helens said he was in the habit of frequenting the Liverpool Arms, Phythian St where he had frequently seen respondent, sometimes with the co-respondent, known by the nickname of “Home Ruler” [laughter] and had seen them conduct themselves improperly. Elizabeth PEARSON, employed at the Liverpool Arms, had seen respondent and MCDERMOTT often there, she saw them on the same day as the last witness, acting in an improper attitude – decree nisi granted.

A Preston case


Petition by the husband for divorce by reason of his wife’s adultery with the co-respondent

The petitioner a boat builder of Preston, who married the respondent in 1859, at St John’s Church Preston, there were 5 children by the marriage. For some time they resided at Birkenhead. Husband went to Chicago for some time and on his return to Preston he obtained a situation as an Insurance agent. The respondent contracted habits of intemperance and committed adultery with co-respondent – decree nisi granted.

January 21st

On Wednesday


Petition by the wife for a divorce by reason of cruelty and adultery of her husband a tobacconist at Liverpool.

Mrs Eleanor COLLEY said she was married on the 15th Feb 1877, at All Saints Liverpool. Her husband frequently assaulted her and while they were living at Dale St he was guilty of cruelty, he kicked her rendering her insensible.

Her servant in the house, Maggie DAVIS, made a statement to her that she was enceinte by the respondent Mr COLLEY, who was present and acknowledged the charge.

Corroborative evidence to the cruelty to her was given by an Aunt of the petitioner – Mr HUMPHREYS, a broker at Liverpool said, in June 1881, he was “in possession” of the respondent’s house, the petitioner had left, Maggie DAVIS was there – decree nisi granted with costs, and custody of the child.

Liverpool Journal, January 21st, 1882



Petitioner the wife for a divorce by reason of cruelty and adultery of her husband, an Engineer of Liverpool.

Mrs Catherine HARRISON was married to respondent, 17th Dec 1875, St Mary’s Ch, Edge Hill. Twice she had been ill through his misconduct. In Oct 1878 he had an action taken against him for seduction by Minnie SHELLEY, a barmaid at the Imperial, but he compromised that action.

In 1880 he left, she has not seen him since. Dr HAWKLEY gave evidence to support her case. Evidence also given that at some lodgings in Westminster, the respondent and Minnie SHELLEY were living as man and wife. – decree nisi given with costs and custody of the children.


A Manchester case.


Petitioner the husband an oil manufacturer of Manchester, by reason of his wife’s adultery with co-respondent, Mr Henry Martin MC CLURE, agent in Manchester for Messers MOSS and Co, shipping agents of Liverpool.

Marriage took place in 1875 at St Peter’s Regents Square. In 1876 co-respondent came to lodge in the house, 107 Upper Brook St, Manchester, an intimacy sprang up which caused the husband to speak to his wife. In June 1881 she went to Scarborough and was joined by MC CLURE, Mr PAGE followed, at the spa at Scarborough he met them together and administered to the co-respondent, a good thrashing.

Mr James PAGE, petitioner gave evidence, evidence given by servants were they deposed witnessing familiarities between their mistress and co-respondent. Testimony also given that Mrs PAGE and MC CLURE stopped together at the Grosvenor Hotel Manchester posing as man and wife. – decree nisi given with costs, petitioner granted custody of the child.

On Thursday

George CURRYER, an actor, sought a dissolution of his marriage with, Mary Ann CURRYER, whose maiden name was WHEELER, an actress known in the theatrical profession as, Mabel VERNER, for her adultery with Edward SHELTON. Neither respondent nor co-respondent appeared personally or by counsel.

They were married at Walsall in Jan 1874, he being 25 yrs, her 19 yrs. They performed together in various part of the U.K, sometimes performing in different towns. When this occurred the petitioner visited his wife as often as he could. There were 4 children by the marriage, only one now living.

In the autumn of 1880 both were performing in Scotland, when her engagement ended she accepted one in the co-respondent’s theatre in Poole. Co-respondent was married with a family.

From that time petitioner had never seen her, though they had corresponded by letter. In a letter dated, Brighton, Oct 1st, she confessed her, “sin;” and in one dated, Birmingham, Oct 12th, 1881, the co-respondent wrote saying, he had read their correspondence, he had known before he had met respondent how little the petitioner valued her, and had already condoned three other similar offences, so he felt he was doing no wrong, pledging, “After twelve months of Mabel’s heart, I am willing to entrust my entire happiness in her hands.”

Petitioner denied any knowledge of similar offences, until in receipt of the letter in Sept 1881, he had no suspicions of her infidelity. A witness proved that in April 1881, the respondent and co-respondent took lodgings in Islington, living as man and wife, she at the time engaged at the Grecian theatre. They remained in lodgings till Oct, on 16th Sept the respondent gave birth to a child. – decree nisi with costs.


William Pritchard DAGG, Piano Forte tuner, applied for dissolution of his marriage to Catherine Louisa DAGG, because of her adultery with co-respondent William SPEAKE.

In 1867 and previously petitioner was a porter in the Bath Mineral Water Hospital, Bath. The respondent worked there as a cook and intimacy sprang up between them, she proved to be with child. They married 28th Apr 1867. Before the marriage the petitioner drew up a document which he said they both regarded as a, solemn, instrument :-

This is to certify if that whereas the undersigned parties do agree [nic] that they will marry, and that only to save the female of us from shaming her friends or telling a lie, and that the said marriage shall be no more thought of than to tell her friends that she is married [unless she should arrive at the following accomplishments – viz, Piano, singing, reading, writing, speaking and deportment]; and whereas these said accomplishments have been in no way sought after, much less mastered, therefore the aforesaid marriage shall be and is null and void, and whereas we agree that the male of us shall keep his harmonium in the aforesaid females sitting-room, we agree that it shall be there no more than four months, and that from that time the aforesaid and undersigned shall be free in every respect whatsoever of the aforesaid and undersigned female, as witness our hands this 1st of ----1867.

Catherine L. JEFFRIES

William Pritchard DAGG

A month after the marriage the respondent was confined of a child, at a lodging taken for her by the petitioner, he handed over the whole of his salary, £15, for the maintenance of the child. Some short time subsequently he lost sight of her, 14 yrs later she was found living in Birmingham with co-respondent, by whom she had children.

Petitioner stated that after the birth of the child he had no further intercourse with her as a husband, but paid her 2s-6d a week which she received at the hospital while she remained at Bath. She left Bath a few months later, up to March last he paid her through relatives the allowance for the child.

Asked by the Judge why he had conducted himself in that way towards his wife, he replied, she had not improved herself in accomplishments so as to fit her to be a wife. He added, she was a “brawling” woman.

The president said, in this case the petition must be dismissed. The inference he drew from the wording of the agreement was that the document was entirely the petitioner’s own doing, he utterly rejected that this was a bona fide agreement between the two, the woman was ignorant. The reasons for him abandoning his wife were unjustified, knowing her fragility it was his duty as a husband to look after her, and 2s-6d a week for the child was not much more than the parish authorities could have compelled him to contribute. He withdrew from her the protection to which as a wife she was entitled, she was left exposed, it is not to be wondered she fell with another man – Desertion on petitioner’s part, application rejected – petition dismissed


Liverpool Mercury, June 4th 1896

Liverpool Divorce Suit

In the Divorce Division of the High Court, at a late hour yesterday afternoon a case was heard in which Mr Robert FRASER, plumber and painter, in business in Liverpool, sued for divorce from his wife on the ground of her adultery with a co-respondent named Hugh CAMPBELL. According to the evidence the partes were married in 1877, and had lived together in Liverpool. In 1895 the wife left her husband and evidence was given to show that she had since been living with the co-respondent. A decree nisi was granted.


Lancashire Marriage indexes for the years: 1877

FRASER Robert HAYES Mary E Toxteth Park, St. Michael Liverpool

1881 census

Robert FRASER Head M Male 23 Scotland Painter (Employing 1 Man And Boy)

Mary Ellen FRASER Wife M Female 21 Winsford, Cheshire, England Wife

Ann Dearina FRASER Daur U Female 2 Liverpool, Lancashire, England

Robert Geo. FRASER Son U Male 10 m Liverpool, Lancashire, England

William FRASER Brother U Male 18 Liverpool, Lancashire, England Plumber


Lancashire Marriage indexes for the years: 1900

HAYES Mary E CAMPBELL Hugh Edge Hill, St. Nathaniel Windsor Liverpool


Liverpool Mercury, 21st Jan 1899


Before Mr Justice BARNES


Petition of Mr Albert Edward MARVIN, in business on the Isle of Wight, for dissolution of his marriage with Hannah Elizabeth MARVIN on the grounds of her adultery with Frederick George PAYNE, there was no defence.

Mr INDERWICK. QC, states that the parties were married, 16th Apr 1868, petitioner was in business on the I.O.W, respondent was earning a considerable income as a professional pianst. They lived happily for 8yrs, then differences arose due to the respondent changing her religion to Roman Catholic and she had the children baptised into the Roman Catholic faith. The wife left home on several occasions and was received back by the petitioner. In 1881 she finally left him and the petitioner believed she had gone to Canada. In the course of 1897 he ascertained that in 1892 she was living with co-respondent in Ingatestone, Essex, as man and wife and had since gone to Canada and was living with co-respondent - granted decree nisi


Petition of J. H. PAYNE a brush maker of Gloucester for disolution of marriage on the grounds of his wife’s adultery with a man, since deceased. There was no defence.

Parties married in 1883 at Lyne Regis and lived for 14mths in Gloucester. Respondent then said she was ill and wished to go to London for medical treatment. This she did and corresponded regularly . She then wrote saying she had met an old lover and was not returning to him. He made inquires and heard she had gone abroad. He heard nothing till 1893 when he was served with a subpoena on behalf of the Treasury to identify his wife, who was charged in the name of Mrs LARGE at Bow St, Police Court with perjury, having sworn in an affidavit that she was the wife of Henry LARGE who kept a Public House, and with whom it is known she had lived - granted decree nisi.

Petition at Rhyl



Suit of Mrs Sarah Jane SNOWDEN, of Bath St, Rhyl for dissolution of marriage with William SNOWDEN, a carter of Rhyl formerly a cab proprietor of Seaforth, against whom she alleged cruelty and adultery, there was no defence.

Mr Pridham WIPPELL appeared for the petitioner and stated that the parties married on the 21st July 1884 at the Parish Church, Walton-on-the-Hill. They afterwards cohabited at School Lane, Seaforth, later Bath St, Rhyl, were the wife is now residing.

For a few years they lived pretty happily, although at no period did respondent appear to have been a good husband.

In 1897 he was discovered in the company of Catherine PERRY, who was in the habit of hanging around the stables in Seaforth, where her husband worked. She accused him of misconduct and he admitted being unfaithful. He had written a letter to the woman in question, which was discovered. He then made a written confession of the adultery.

There was evidence that on several occasions he had struck his wife, and in consequence of an assault in August 1898, she declined to further cohabit with him. The respondent has now gone to America.

Police Sgt James ASHCROFT of Seaforth, said he had seen the respondent in the company of Catherine PERRY and had witnessed the intimacy. Several other witnesses confirmed this.

Mr H. P. WILLIAMS, Solicitor of Rhyl gave evidence as to the respondent having signed the confession - granted decree nisi with costs.

Objected to Children

Undefended petition, of Mrs Mary Hannah MCILWRAITH of Great Ancoats St, Manchester for the dissolution of her marriage on the grounds of desertion and adultery of her husband James MCILWRAITH formerly a tram guard to whom she was married at the Parish Church of Higher Openshaw on July 26th 1891. She afterwards lived with him at Great Ancoats St, Manchester until August 1893, but he complained when she was enceinte and said he was not going to keep any children, in 1893 he left her.

It was not for some time that she knew his whereabouts. Then she sued him in the Manchester Police Court for maintenance and obtained an order. Since then she has been living with other women at Ashton-under-Lyne. He was now in America - granted decree nisi with costs and custody of the child.

A petition revived


There were perjury prosecutions against two servants arising out of a former suit, but the charges failed.

Mr R. E. MOORE opening the case, said, this was the petition of Mrs Mildred BAILEY for the dissolution of her marriage on the grounds of cruelty and adultery of her husband.

Dr R. G. BAILEY, a medical man in practise at Stroud Green, London. She married in 1888 and they lived together till 1897.

The petitioner presented a suit last year and after a long trial the jury negatived a charge of adultery, but, established the charge of cruelty, and a decree for a judicial separation was pronounced.

Since that date the respondent had been living in adultery at Stroud Green to an actress named MANWARING.

Respondent had not paid any alimony, petitioner had to join a touring company in order to earn a living and while she was playing in South Africa proceedings were instituted on her behalf - decree nisi granted with cost.

Sequel to an elopement

Petitioner, Lily SCOTT, living at Keighley, for dissolution of her marriage on the grounds of her husbands adultery and desertion.

Adultery is alleged with a Miss Nellie MUSGRAVE with whom the respondent is living in Coral St, Manchester. There was no defence.

Mrs SCOTT said, she was married in 1890 and lived with her husband till Aug 1895. Up to then she had no complaint other than his neglect. On Aug 3rd 1895, respondent said he had received the offer of a berth in Australia and intended to accept it. If she did not consent he would put her out and sell their home. She therefore consented, subject to her following him out. He said he was going to say goodbye to his parents in Bingley, and would make the final arrangements, for her subsequently, but he never returned. She could not ascertain his whereabouts, even though she had sent his parents numerous letters.

She employed a detective and learned Miss Nellie MUSGRAVE disappeared the same day as the respondent, she further learned that her husband was in business as a Grocer in Manchester and was living with MUSGRAVE. She went to Coral St and was threatened by her husband that if she entered the house he would kick her out. He had not contributed to her support since 1895.

Selby MUSGRAVE of Kendal Place, Leeds, deposed, his sister disappeared in 1895 and was traced to Coral St where she was now living with respondent - granted decree nisi with costs.

A Burnley suit

Petition of Sarah Ann DYSON for divorce by reason of the desertion and adultery of her husband Alfred DYSON, there was no defence.

Mr WALKER, appearing for the petitioner said, the parties were married in 1881 and lived at Burnley and Colne until 1889, respondent did not contribute to the home expenses and when the business of his wife failed in 1889, he determined to go to America, and for the purpose induced his wife to borrow money for him, undertaking to return it. He left and nothing was heard of him until 1895, when it appeared he had returned to this country, and had formed an intimacy with a young woman in Rochdale with whom he was living as man and wife.

The plaintiff, living at 2 Charmsford St was called and gave evidence.

Mary Ann MARSTON was called and admitted living with the respondent since 1896 in Janeway St - decree nisi granted with costs.

Landlady and lodger

Wednesday EVANS v EVANS and ATKINS

Petitioner was the husband and co-respondent was a lodger in his home.

Petitioner lived in Oswestry.

He was asked how long ATKINS had lived in his house since being suspected?

Petitioner - “about 12mths.”

How was it you allowed it?

Petitioner - “I could not help it, I complained of em going about together, and they both laughed at me and said they would do as they wanted.”

You were master in your own house.?

“Yes, but he would not go.”

Lordship asked for further evidence.

Liverpool Mercury, 21st Jan 1899

Williams v Wynn, Divorce Suit

At the High Court of Justice on Monday, Justice BARNES made absolute the decree nisi, which was granted to Sir Herbert Lloyd William -WYNN of Wynnstay, Ruabon, on the 7th July last for the dissolution of his marriage to Lady Louise Alexandra Williams-WYNN on the ground of her adultery with Mr Ernest Murray LUCAS. The marriage took place in 1884 at Ruabon.


Liverpool Mercury 19th Jan 1907

Liverpool Tradesman’s divorce

In the Divorce Court before Mr Justice DEANE a case was heard in which Mrs Georgina Maud DAVIES, now living at Osnaberg St, Regents Park, London, sued for divorce from Mr Frederick DAVIES, tea merchant, London and Lord St, Liverpool, on the grounds of desertion and misconduct – the latter was granted a decree nisi for divorce with costs.

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