Saturday, 27 April 2013

High praise

Just a quick reminder, as it seems somehow newly relevant: Harvard professor Steven Pinker, who last week landed in third place on Prospect magazine's 'World Thinkers' list, referred to The Most Remarkable Woman in England on Twitter as 'A fascinating real-life murder story.' (3 October 2012).

High praise indeed.

For those interested in a much, much (much!) broader analysis of violence than my own book's individual case study, Pinker's The Better Angels of Our Nature is well worth your time.

(For a few more details, see a post at my other blog.)

Friday, 26 April 2013

Today in the Pace case: 26 April 1928

Thursday, 26 April 1928: 5th sitting of the coroner’s inquest, in Coleford.

Testimony from acquaintances of the Paces continues, with two fellow patients who had known Harry while he had been hospitalised the previous year, Arthur Smith and Edwin Morgan, describing Harry’s state of mind while he was ill.

The main testimony is provided by Inspector Alan Bent of the local constabulary. Beatrice’s first police statement (given to Bent on 15 February) is read aloud.

Further comments are given by Rosa Kear (an ‘uncertified midwife’ and neighbour of Beatrice and Harry) and Matthew Hoare, who bought some lambs from the Paces the preceding August.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Today in the Pace case: 19 April 1928

Thursday, 19 April 1928: 4th sitting of the coroner’s inquest, in Coleford.

Testimony is given by a variety of friends and acquaintances of Beatrice and Harry: Albert Jones, Reginald Martin, Charles Fletcher and Fred Thorne.

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Today in the Pace case: 18 April 1928

Wednesday, 18 April 1928: 3rd sitting of the coroner’s inquest, in Coleford.

The inquest hears testimony from Gertude Pace (Leonard Pace’s wife), who – like other family members – is very critical of Beatrice.

(From left) Leslie, Dorothy, Selwyn, Beatrice and Doris Pace
Two of Beatrice’s children give evidence: her eldest daughter, seventeen-year-old Dorothy, and her middle daughter, Doris, eleven.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Today in the Pace case: 12 April 1928

Thursday, 12 April 1928: 2nd sitting of the coroner’s inquest, in Coleford.

A newspaper photograph of Harry's brother, Elton Pace
Testimony is given by Elton Pace (Harry’s brother), Sergeant Charlie Hamblin (of the Coleford police) as well as by Leah Pritchard and Flossie Pace (two of Harry’s sisters).

Just as at the sitting on 29 March, Harry’s relatives paint a negative portrait of Beatrice, suggesting she was uncaring toward her late husband and that she may have been unfaithful.

As the Dean Forest Guardian later put it, ‘They were all, more or less, on bad terms with Mrs. Pace, questioning her conduct generally and criticising her attitude toward the deceased. They had heard ... that he had suffered from arsenical poisoning, but declined to make any direct accusations against anyone.’ (27 April 1928, p. 5)