Elizabeth Cranbery, Killing > murder, 27th April 1720.

Reference Number: t17200427-43
Offence: Killing > murder
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death
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Elizabeth Cranbery of Twittenham , was indicted for the Murder of Thomas Biggs , by privately putting White Arsenick, and other Poyson, into a Dish of Milk Porridge, which she knew to be provided for his Breakfast, on the 9th of April , of which he was sick from 8 a Clock in the Morning till 4 in the, Afternoon, and then died. She was indicted a second Time on the Coroners Inquest for the same. Hannah Tudor deposed that on the Tuesday before, she going to make the Bed where the Prisoner and her self lay, found a piece of yellow Silk with something tied up in it, which she took to be Sugar, but putting it to her Tongue found it hot, whereupon she took out a little of it and put into a Paper, and tied up the rest again and put it in the Window; that the Prisoner came into the Room, took it out of the Window, and carried toward her Box; that she shewed what she had reserved in the Paper to the Deceased and his Wife, to see if they knew what it was; that on Friday Night the Prisoner and the Deceased (who was her Father-in-Law) had many Words together, insomuch that he threatned to turn her out of Doors; and she told him he should not: that on Saturday Morning while the Deceased's Wife was feeding of him, he complained there was something in the Porridge, and that she told him there was nothing to her Knowledge for she clean'd the Sauce-Pan and boyled it her self, and if there was any thing it must be in the Oat-meal; that he eat two or three Spoonfuls more, and complained again, whereupon she went and took the Spoon out of her Mistresses Hand. and stirring the Milk found something in it, which she said look'd like Lime, and his Son said it look'd like Starch; that stirring it to the Bottom she found a great many white Specks; that they gave it to the Dog, who vomited it up again. That the Deceased said, What have you Poisened me! I'll search all your Boxes. That the Prisoner said, He should not search hers, if he did he should pay for it. But he going to break it open with a Hammer, she opened it her self; and took out a Paper which she said was Cinnamon, and then another Paper, which she was going to convey away, but the Deceased being very intent upon the search, and his Head as it were in the Box, perceived it and snatch'd it out of her Hand, saying, (when he had look'd upon it) This is such as I had in my Victuals. He sent his Wife to the Doctors with it, who order'd her to give him some Oil; that he was taken ill presently, and continued Vomiting till he died, which was about 4 a Clock in the Afternoon. Mrs. Biggs deposed, that she made a Saucepan of Milk-Porridge, as usual, and left her Daughter (the Prisoner) to look after her Nursery while she fed her Husband (the Deceased) that he complained there was something in his Porridge twice, &c. and confirmed what the former Evidence had deposed, and added that the Deceased said, he hoped he should overcome it because he vomited so much. The Paper taken out of her Box was produced in Court. Dr. Perkins deposed, that he lookt upon it when it was brought to him, and that it was White Arsenick, White Vitriol, and Bole-Armoniac, which is rank Poyson; that heopened him, and found him Poysoned, his Stomach corroded and turn'd Black, and other Marks of Poyson. The Prisoner denied the Fact. and said that she lived at an Apothecary's in the Country as a Servant, but having agreed with a Woman to learn her to wash Gloves, she gave her Mistress warning; that a Woman coming one Day for something to wash Gloves with, when the Dr. had served her he laid the rest down in the Window, and she took it in Order to make use of it when she came to wash Gloves her self. And as to her refusing to have her Box search'd, she said that tho' she did at first, yet she open'd it her self presently. The Jury considering the whole matter brought her in Guilty of both Indictments. Death .


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