Elizabeth Fry Goes to Newgate
ON a cold January day in 1817, in the gloomy vestibule outside the women’s yard at Newgate, two turnkeys might have been seen arguing with a lady. The row inside the yard was as great as usual. Even while they talked, a woman rushed wildly out of a doorway and, with shrieks of furious laughter, snatched off the caps and headgear of every woman that she could reach.
‘ And she would n’t stop at doing that to you, ma’am. Tear off your things — scratch and claw you — that’s what they’d do, ma’am.’ The turnkeys felt that delicacy forbade telling all that could be done by these harridans to a lady that ventured alone into their midst. They themselves knew better than to go in alone. They always went in two together; the Governor himself went in guarded. But the lady was obstinate. She had in her hand a powerful permit from the prison Governor. She smiled, and gave the men a little money. But she talked to them with an unconscious authority, as she would have talked to her gardeners at home. ‘I am going in — and alone. I thank you for your kind intentions, but you are not to come with me,’ was the purport of her speech. At least, then, she must leave her watch behind. They could see the glittering chain on the quiet richness of her Quaker dress. But the unreasonable lady would not even do that! ‘Oh, no, I thank you. My watch goes with me everywhere.1 I am not afraid! Open the gate for me, please! ’
Reluctant, sullen, and very much alarmed as to results, the turnkeys pressed open the gate against the begging, scuffling crowd, and Elizabeth Fry went in. The gate clanged and locked behind her. There was an instantaneous silence of sheer astonishment. Then every woman in the yard surged forward. Curiosity can be as dangerous as violence in a rough crowd. The lady was surrounded; the turnkeys could only see the tip of her white cap. But no one was snatching. Now was seen one benefit of Quaker dress. It was not provocative. There were no feathers, no flying fancy scarves to tempt a mischievous finger or an unsatisfied cupidity. And the Quaker dress was an outward and visible mark of religion. All these wicked women respected religion and believed in God. Yet Elizabeth was in great danger. If she should now show fear, or say or do the wrong thing — but she had never been less afraid in her life. Look, what is she doing now? She has picked up a filthy little child and it can be seen fingering her bright chain. She lifts her hand for attention, and is attended to.
‘Friends, many of you are mothers. I too am a mother. I am distressed for your children. Is there not something we can do for these innocent little ones? Do you want them to grow up to become real prisoners themselves? Are they to learn to be thieves and worse?’
Ah, she has touched the spot. She has pierced their armor to the very heart. What, save our children? Sobs and tears answered her appeal. They gave her a chair, and brought their children to show her. What tales they told in their inarticulate way, of wickedness, remorse, injustice, and despair! She remained with them for hours. She tried to cheer them up by mention of a mysterious person called Christ (some of them asked who He was) and by telling a curious story about a man who owned a vineyard and hired laborers by the hour, and paid the people who came in at the eleventh hour as much as the people who came in at the first. But chiefly she was showing them how to do something that had been in former days the chief sign of their humanity and that had been crushed out of them by harsh bondage. She was making plans with them. And when at last she bade them farewell, and the barred gate opened for her civil egress, she left behind her an inhabitant very strange to Newgate, one usually as much abandoned at its doors as at the very gate of Hell — that revivifying spirit of human vitality called Hope.
What, then, was Elizabeth Fry’s remarkable project? It was very simple. Hardly anyone could disagree with it. It required no Act of Parliament, nor any great outlay of money. In short, it was nothing more nor less than to start a school, in Newgate, for the children of prisoners and for juvenile criminals.
This idea appeared to her so natural, so modest in its scope, that she did not think it necessary to invoke the aid of the noblemen’s committee or of her stately brothers-in-law.2 By the genius of her common sense and practical simplicity, she took the shortest way to her end.
But it was much more than the shortest way.
By invoking the aid of the women themselves, she put herself more than a hundred years in advance of the most advanced thinkers of her time. She set going in that instant the most genuine ‘reform’ that any have been able to approach. It was a renaissance of soul.
On her next visit Mrs. Fry was welcomed as already a familiar friend. Remnants of lost manners returned to the women in response to her serene courtesy. They proudly presented to her the schoolmistress they had chosen from among themselves, a young woman called Mary Connor, recently committed for stealing a watch, but in other respects well qualified to instruct the young. Mrs. Fry praised their progress, and talked over with them in detail the necessary rules that would have to be established for the school. She could not go forward without the assurance of their complete coöperation. Armed with this assurance and with consequent definite suggestions and regulations, she then approached the authorities. They met her at the Governor’s house — the two Sheriffs of London, the Ordinary, and the Governor of Newgate himself. It was one of the occasions when it was an advantage to be regarded as ‘richer than we really are.’3 Only a lady of wealth and standing could have commanded the ear of these important men. As it was, they gave her every attention, but displayed, with all politeness, the usual official attitude. Her plan was a very nice plan; it did both her heart and her mind credit, but, alas! Mrs. Fry did not know Newgate as they did. These bad women were incorrigible, irretrievable. It simply would not work. Mrs. Fry still pressed for an experimental trial, and the badgered gentlemen promised her to look into it and to see her again. But at the second interview they expressed their regret that the experiment was impossible; after a thorough examination of the prison they were assured that there was not a single room that could be spared for it.
With an astuteness worthy of her brother Sam Gurney, the great financier, and with that other quality common to them both that had been known in their childhood as obstinacy, Mrs. Fry persuaded the gentlemen to commit themselves to the statement that the absence of a room was now their only objection. She then politely withdrew, and went down to her allies, the women prisoners.
To state her problem to them was to solve it. They felt they had space to spare. When Stephen Grellet, the French-American Quaker, had seen them four years before, they had been crowded into two rooms and part of a yard. Now — owing to the pressure of investigation — they had six rooms and a cell or two, and the whole yard. One of the smaller rooms was found to be, by common consent, unneeded for any other purpose, and Mrs. Fry therefore appropriated it as a schoolroom. ‘Upon this she returned to the Sheriffs, who told her she might take it if she liked and try her benevolent, but almost hopeless, experiment.’
The very next day was appointed for the start. Mrs. Fry was as impatient to begin as the prisoners themselves. No Gurney could ever see the virtue of delay.
She left the women full of business, occupied — happily and virtuously — in tidying and preparing their children and themselves for the great chance.
The next day she returned accompanied by a friend, Mary Sanderson, laden with old school books, installed Mary Connor as teacher, and formally opened the school.
So, casually and simply, Elizabeth Fry began a work that within a few months had grown to a dimension which carried her name all over the country, within three years was to place her in correspondence, as prison adviser, with most of the crowned heads of Europe, and which since her death has given her a niche among the great women of history.
She opens her neglected journal at Mildred’s Court, February 24, 1817, and makes a hurried entry. ‘I have lately been much occupied in forming a school in Newgate for the children of the poor prisoners, as well as the young criminals, which has brought much peace and satisfaction with it; but my mind has been deeply affected in attending a poor woman who was executed this morning. I visited her twice. This event has brought me into much feeling, attended by some distressingly nervous sensations in the night. . . . This poor creature murdered her baby; and how inexpressibly awful to have her life taken away! The whole affair has been truly afflicting to me; to see what poor mortals may be driven to, through sin and transgression, and how hard the heart becomes, even to the most tender affections. How should we watch and pray, that we fall not by little and little, and become hardened and commit greater sins.’
Thirty pupils, mostly children of seven and under, were enrolled in the school; and the ‘narrowness of the room’ would hold no more. But the door was besieged with girls in their teens and women in their twenties and older, beseeching, with tears, to be allowed in and taught. It was heartbreaking work to dash their hopes and to deny a desire so right and so reformatory. Elizabeth comforted herself and them by promising that the denial, forced from want of space, should be only temporary.
She would try to do something for them, if they would be patient and help her to plan. In her daily visits to the school, with various of her friends, she passed through the appalling life of the yard, and saw it from many angles. There was no question now of danger — she was known by all, respected by all, and loved by many. But she saw and heard and was aware of all kinds of filth, drunkenness, and degradation. She knew that, under the care of men gaolers, the utmost abuses were rife. She knew that men prisoners were let into the women’s quarters at night. She knew things ‘too bad to tell,’ so that she never dared take any ‘young person’ into that place. She was not dulled by habit or frightened away by horror. And she neither despised nor despaired. Her eyes and ears, her heart and mind, were wide open; and the question that she asked herself and them was, ‘What can be done?’
The more intelligent ones told her the very first day what they needed — employment. And what they wanted to be taught — to read and to sew. The enforced idleness, the dreadful ennui of prison, was worse to them than its other miseries. It was itself a direct incentive to vicious behavior, as a re’ief from intolerable monotony.
But if Elizabeth Fry was to start, as she first called it, ‘a school’ for the women, there were various difficulties to be faced. They wished to sew; and how understandable, how right. But sew what? Clothes for their children and for themselves. And after that, what?
None of them had thought beyond that. But Elizabeth mentally proceeded to the conclusion that they should sew things to sell. And, being herself of the merchant class, she realized that she must answer the questions: Sell to whom? And by what means? Money also would be needed to buy the initial materials. And where was the money to come from?
She consulted Fowell Buxton and Sam Hoare, and to her distress they threw cold water on the whole idea. Quite, quite impossible. All materials given out to prisoners for such work would be stolen. The women, even if they did a little work at first, would soon be tired of it. Countrywomen, accustomed to labor, might be more persevering, but most of these Newgate prisoners were the very scum of the city, prostitutes and thieves from their youth up, whose every friend, every connection, every influence, was and had been of the lowest and most criminal description. Old habits and violent passions would soon assert themselves against a temporary desire for betterment or novelty. Elizabeth Fry and her friends would only waste their time and money, and get their feelings hurt, by attempting such an extraordinary experiment. Why, what authority could they invoke against creatures who had already set at defiance the law of the land? What punishment could they appeal to, in order to subdue beings already under penalty?
No punishment at all, said the unreasonable Elizabeth. It was no use even Buxton’s talking to her in his large, noble, and emphatic way about female felons. She persisted in regarding them as women.
If Buxton and his committee could not help her, she decided to have a committee of her own. Several of her friends had already become actively interested in the Newgate school. She got together ten of them, all Quakers but her friend Mrs. Angelzaark, and explained to them her scheme. The ten ladies united under her leadership and formed the Ladies’ Association for the Improvement of the Female Prisoners in Newgate; usually briefly called the Ladies’ Newgate Committee. They bound themselves to take turns in going daily to Newgate to oversee and instruct the women, to provide funds for the necessary work materials until the city should relieve them, to arrange for the sale of the work, and to pay the salary of a matron who should be on the spot night and day.
Elizabeth Fry always had her plans fully shaped before she approached the entrenched conservatism of authority. Then objection after objection could be met because foreseen and provided against.
But now that further step was necessary, and she dreaded it. ‘My mind and time,’ she wrote in her journal, ‘have been much taken up by Newgate and its concerns. I have been encouraged about our school, but I find my weak nature and proneness to be so much affected by the opinions of man bring me into some peculiar trials and temptations; in the first place our Newgate visiting could no longer be kept secret, which I endeavoured that it should be, and therefore I am exposed to praise that I do not the least deserve; also to some unpleasant humiliations — for in trying to obtain helpers I must be subject to their various opinions; and also, being obliged to confer at times with strangers and men in authority is to me a very unpleasant necessity.’
Her husband came to her rescue. He knew, and he only, that beneath the stately air, the slower movement of the handsome matron of thirty-seven, there beat still a heart that was subject to girlish tremors. When it became evident that the development of affairs in Newgate would require further sanctions and coöperations from the Governor and Sheriffs, Mr. Fry invited the daunting officials to meet his wife in the wealthy atmosphere of his own house and under the dignity of his protection.
Not that Joseph Fry was a dignified man in the sense in which the Gurneys or Fowell Buxton was dignified. They were natural princes. But Fry was a man of consequence. His farmerish figure was well known in the city, and it meant money. It meant credit, and honesty and success. Fry’s Bank, backed by Gurneys’, was to weather the storm for many years to come. And in those days it gave a wife ‘countenance’ to have her husband show openly that he favored her activities.
Mr. Cotton, the Ordinary, and Mr. Newman, the Governor, came together; and Mr. Bridges, the Sheriff, came alone. They listened, they argued, they discouraged — and they consented. They had, in fact, handicapped themselves by the admission of the school. That had been, it turned out, the little end of the wedge so justly dreaded by conservatives. Mrs. Fry’s new proposals were but driving the wedge a little farther in. Yet within a fortnight it had split the rotten timbers of prison administration clean asunder.
On the following Sunday, at Mrs. Fry’s suggestion, the two Sheriffs, with Mr. Cotton and Governor Newman, met the ladies at Newgate. ‘Upwards of seventy women (prisoners) were collected together.’ Mrs. Fry then addressed the women, reminding them that only by their coöperation could the desires they had expressed to her be fulfilled; and that if they were to be taught and employed as she hoped, it would be necessary for them to agree to keep to certain rules, in order that everything might be organized for the good of the whole. She told them that the ladies who proposed to come to their help and teach them and provide them with work did not come with any authoritative pretensions; that it was not intended that they should command and the prisoners obey, but that all should act in unity and by agreement; ‘that not a rule should be made or a monitor appointed without their full and unanimous concurrence; that for this purpose each of the rules should be read and put to the vote; and she invited those who might feel any disinclination to any particular’ to express their opinion freely. She then read the rules, which she had talked over with the women beforehand in many visits, and each rule was voted on separately by a show of hands. They were all unanimously adopted. The Governor then made a brief speech of confirmation, reminding the prisoners that this innovation was an experiment, and only their good conduct would justify its continuance. He then turned to Mrs. Fry and her committee with a shrug and a gesture—‘Well, ladies, you see your materials!’
One of the ladies replied — and closed the proceedings — by reading the parable of the prodigal son.
The rules were chiefly propositions in relation to organization. A matron was to be appointed for general superintendence. The women were to be provided with materials and instruction in needlework, knitting, or any other suitable employment. They were to be divided into classes or small groups, of not more than twelve, with a monitor over each — the monitor to be chosen by the women themselves from those among them who could read and who showed themselves capable of responsibility. A yard keeper was to be elected by the women to inform them when their friends came, to go with them to the grating, and to see that they did not spend any time there except with their friends. This was an aid to the enforcement of the rule that begging, drinking, and other bad habits should be given up.
At nine in the morning and at six in the evening the women were all to assemble in the workroom for a short Bible reading by one of the visitors, and to have the work for the day distributed and collected. The monitors were to keep a check on the work of their groups, and the matron was to double-check this by ‘an exact account’ of all the work done by the women, and of their conduct. The monitors were to see that their charges came to work with clean hands and faces, and behaved quietly while at work. Any monitor found unsuitable was to be deposed, and the next most suitable member of the group elected in her place.
No penalties were attached to these rules. Any infringement was to be ‘reported to the matron,’ but the ladies had of course no power to punish, and the matron was at the beginning their employee. Later, Elizabeth Fry instituted a system of rewards for good behavior, but never any punishments, other than the losing of the rewards.
Governor Newman, who, shrug as he might, was by this time entirely under Elizabeth Fry’s peculiar, grave fascination, sent down the carpenters and had the prison laundry cleaned, whitewashed, and fitted up as a workroom. There Elizabeth Fry started what she still called a ‘school.’
One third of the women in Newgate were unable to read at all; another third could only read ‘a little.’ Mrs. Fry believed then, as she believed and wrote ten years later in her little book on prisons, that ‘they ought to be taught to read, write and cipher, as well as to make a ready and profitable use of the needle.’
Within a month of the start of the experiment, the Lord Mayor of London, the Sheriffs, and several of the Aldermen came down to Newgate by invitation to see how it was getting on. ‘Many of those,’ says Buxton, ‘knew Newgate, had visited it a few months before and had not forgotten the painful impressions made by a scene exhibiting perhaps the very utmost limits of misery and guilt. They now saw what, without exaggeration, may be called a transformation. . . . They saw no more an assemblage of abandoned and shameless creatures, half naked and half drunk, rather demanding than requesting charity. . . . This “hell upon earth” exhibited the appearance of an industrious manufactory or a well-regulated family. . . . The magistrates immediately adopted the whole plan as a part of the system of Newgate, empowered the ladies to punish the refractory by a short confinement, undertook part of the expense of the matron,’ and of course said very flattering and enthusiastic things to Mrs. Fry and her helpers.
On February 21, 1818, the Grand Jury of the City of London drew up the following memorandum: ‘They cannot conclude their report without expressing in an especial manner the peculiar gratification they experience in observing the important service rendered by Mrs. Fry and her friends, and the habits of religion, order, industry and cleanliness which her humane, benevolent and praiseworthy exertions have introduced among the female prisoners; and that if the principles which govern her regulations were adopted towards the males, as well as the females, it would be the means of converting a prison into a school of reform; and instead of sending criminals back into the world hardened in vice and depravity, they would be restored to it repentant, and probably become useful members of society.’
Very early in her Newgate career Mrs. Fry found herself in great demand by women about to die. And her opinion of capital punishment was formed then. The first woman she tells of was a child murderess. Another was one Elizabeth Fricker, executed for robbing, or being accessory to robbing, a dwelling house. Mrs. Fry’s journal for March 4, 1817, reads: ‘I have just returned from a most melancholy visit to Newgate, where I have been at the request of Elizabeth Fricker, previous to her execution to-morrow morning at eight o’clock. I found her much harried, distressed and tormented in mind. Her hands cold, and covered with something like the perspiration preceding death, and in an universal tremor. The women who were with her said she had been so outrageous before our going that they thought a man must be sent for to manage her. However, after a serious time with her, her troubled soul became calmed. But is it for man thus to take the prerogative of the Almighty into his own hands? Is it not his place rather to endeavour to reform such, or to restrain them from the commission of further evil? At least to afford poor erring fellow-mortals, whatever may be their offences, an opportunity of proving their repentance by amendment of life. Besides this poor young woman, there are also six men to be hanged, one of whom has a wife near her confinement, also condemned, and seven young children. Since the awful report came down, he has become quite mad, from horror of mind. A strait waistcoat could not keep him within bounds: he had just bitten the turnkey. I saw the man come out with his hand bleeding as I passed the cell. I hear that another, who had been tolerably educated and brought-up, was doing all he could to harden himself, through unbelief, trying to convince himself that religious truths were idle tales. . . . He sent to beg for a bottle of wine, no doubt in the hope of drowning his misery and the fears that would arise, by a degree of intoxication.‘
In the case of Elizabeth Fricker, the man convicted with her declared, the night before his execution, that she was innocent, and that ‘a boy concealed had let him into the house.’ But she was executed none the less. And so was the pregnant woman forger, when she had recovered from her confinement, thus leaving eight orphans on the hands of the state. This woman, Mrs. Woodman, was a great worry to one of Elizabeth Fry’s helpers, who tried to read to her in vain. ’So unnatural is her situation that one can hardly tell how to meet her case. She seems afraid to love her baby.’
Cases of this sort were like personal sorrows to Elizabeth Fry. They haunted her in the night. And as she gained more weight in the world she used it to obtain pardons and reprieves wherever excuse seemed to offer. She boasted gently to the Parliamentary Committee about ‘Lord Sidmouth having been very kind to us whenever we have applied for the mitigation of punishment since our Committee has been formed.’ But in that she made a mistake.
Henry Addington, Viscount Sidmouth, was a petty and narrow-minded man, the tool of the Conservative interest, a notorious anti-reformer. His first rise in Parliament, under the wing of Pitt, caused a catchword to be coined about him: ‘As London is to Paddington, so Pitt is to Addington.’ McCarthy says of him, ‘Neither Lord Liverpool nor Lord Sidmouth had ever given any evidence, we will not say of statesmanship, but even of parliamentary aptitude.’ Yet this pompous nonentity, as touchy of his dignity as a raw police sergeant, was Prime Minister of England (as the pawn of Pitt) during the first years of Elizabeth’s marriage, and in 1818 was Home Secretary. As Home Secretary, he was the final resort in matters of life and death, and the first appeal Elizabeth made to him after her unwise words to the Parliamentary Committee was promptly refused.
The case in point was a particularly glaring one. A young woman, Harriet Skelton, had been arbitrarily chosen for execution out of a number condemned for forgery, and the whole Women’s Side at Newgate felt the shock. Harriet was not a criminal type. Her charm, her quiet demeanor and good behavior, her superior refinement, and the fact that her only crime had been to pass a forged note at the imperative instance of the man she loved — perhaps not even knowing it was forged — had made all the women certain that she would be one of the greater number reprieved.
Astonished and chagrined at Sidmouth’s first rebuff, Elizabeth pressed the point with all the ardor of her nature, all the conviction that right was on her side, all the urgency of knowing that a life was at stake. She did not know her man. She supposed, in the innocence of her heart, that the Home Secretary was trying to judge the case on its merits. Her letters were in vain, and he refused to see her. Time was passing, and Elizabeth made one last desperate effort. Her old friend the Duke of Gloucester was in London, now safely married to the faithful Princess Mary, daughter of King George III, for whom he had waited so long. Surely the Prince would help her, remembering those old days of heartfelt gayety at Earlham.4 Indeed he would. He went with her to Newgate, saw Harriet Skelton, and heard their statement. He went with her to the Directors of the Bank of England and begged their favorable intervention and he went with her and Lady Harcourt to the Home Secretary’s Office.
It was useless. Sidmouth had entrenched himself in sulky obstinacy. The consciousness of pressure, and the fact that he was, in the eyes of all those who were aware of the circumstances, being put in the wrong, made him peevish. Not even at the request of a prince of the blood would he see that odious, that dangerous, that too fascinating woman, Mrs. Fry. In fact, he dared not see her. And he rudely and curtly refused.
It was a good morning’s work for Viscount Sidmouth. Elizabeth Fry was humiliated and Harriet Skelton was doomed.
That twenty-eighth day of April, 1818, was, as Elizabeth recorded in her journal, a day of ups and downs in a remarkable degree. ‘When under great humiliation in consequence of this [affair with Sidmouth], Lady Harcourt took me with her to the Mansion House, rather against my will, to meet many of the royal family at the examination of some large schools.’ So the lady who could not be received by the Home Secretary in the morning was in the afternoon presented to the Queen.
‘It was a subject for Hayter’ — the platform ablaze with bishops, ladies, fans, feathers, jewels, and orders; the hall lined with spectators, ‘and in the centre hundreds of poor children brought there to be examined from their different schools.’ But young Katharine Fry tells it best, in a letter to Aunt Hannah Buxton, ‘a description of our day at the Mansion House. ’
With infinite difficulty we got into the ante-room. In a few minutes some men in very grand liveries came in a great hurry to clear the way and lay down a piece of scarlet cloth; the cry was ‘The Queen is coming!’ We looked through the entrance-door and saw mamma (!) with the Bishop of Gloucester (!) and Lady Harcourt with Alderman Wood. Silence had been previously ordered as a mark of respect, but a buzz of ‘Mrs. Fry, Mrs. Fry’ ran through the room. It was to our utter astonishment that we saw them come in and walk along those spread carpets, Lady Harcourt in full court-dress on the arm of the Alderman in his scarlet gown, and secondly the Bishop of Gloucester (Ryder) in lawn sleeves leading our darling mother in her plain Friends’ cap, one of the light scarf cloaks worn by plain Friends, and a dark silk gown — I see her now! her light flaxen hair, a little flush on her face from the bustle and noise she had passed through, and her sweet, lovely, placid smile. In a few minutes the Queen passed, followed by the Princesses, the Royal Dukes, the Lady Mayoress, and other official personages. . . .
The Lord Mayor placed us behind the hustings on which the Queen was. We asked him for mamma. He burst out laughing: ’There she is on the bench of Bishops!’ There were eight of them there. We heard people pointing her out to one another: ‘That is she, with her hair over her forehead.’ — ‘That must be Mrs. Fry, with the Bishops!‘ — ‘Look now! you may see Mrs. Fry; she rises to receive the Queen’s salute.’ Towards the close, after ‘God Save the King’ had been sung, everybody began to clap violently, and we asked the cause. ‘Why, the Queen is speaking to Mrs. Fry!’ When Queen Charlotte arose to go, she paused and passed to the side where the Bishops sat, — of course all had risen, — and Lady Harcourt presented our mother. The Queen, who is so short, courtesying, and our mother, who is so tall, not courtesying, was very awkward. Her Majesty asked mother if she were not afraid of going into prisons, how far she lived from London, and how many children she had.5 The shouts in the hall were tremendous, and were caught up by the crowds outside. It was told why they shouted, and it was repeated again and again, till it reached our father, sitting in his office at St. Mildred’s Court, that ‘the Queen is speaking to Mrs. Fry.’
- Joseph Fry, when Elizabeth Gurney’s suitor, had made this watch and chain the symbol of their engagement. — AUTHOR↩
- Fowell Buxton and Samuel Hoare, both interested in prison reform.↩
- Elizabeth’s husband was already beginning to suffer from the money troubles which led ten years later to his bankruptcy. — AUTHOR↩
- The Duke of Gloucester’s regiment had been stationed at Norwich in 1797 and he had been a frequent visitor at Earlham Hall, Elizabeth’s maiden home. — AUTHOR↩
- She had at this time nine. — AUTHOR↩