Of the Green Family from Harpole, Northamptonshire their Ancestors and Relatives

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A Scandal in the Family - William Major - 1849

Dr William Major was my 4xG Uncle. His relationship to my Mother can be seen here. More of his life can be seen here.

On 28 Jun 1849 in the Thames Magistrates Court this case was heard. It was reported in the The Weekly Dispatch on 1 Jul 1849


DELICATE AFFAIR.—On Thursday, Mrs. Frances major, wife of Dr.
Major, of the Mount, Whitechapel, appeared to answer a summons
for abusive words, issued at the instance of Miss Sarah Major, sister,
to the defendant's husband. There was also another summons taken
out against the defendant's niece Miss, Loüisa Warren Polsden, by
Miss Ellen Savage, Doctor Major's housekeeper, who appears to be
the teterriena cause belli in the whole transaction. The case, in which
Mr. Pelham appeared for the plaintiff, and Mr. Homer, clerk to Mr.
Smith appeared  for the defendant, occupied the Court, for a considerable
atime, and excited much interest.. The facts are briefly these :
Doctor Major and his wife perfected a deed of separation about 18
months since, and not long after the Doctor engaged Miss Savage, 
a fine buxom, Black eyed woman, to fill her place as housekeeper.
She dined with him and his sisters at the same table,rode
out with him in his carriage to places of public amusement, And was
treated in every other respect as one of his family. This excited the
jealousy of Mrs Major, who felt satisfied that Miss Savage held criminal
intercourse with her husband, and a suit for divorce, instituted
by her, is now pending in the Ecclesiastical Courts. Doctor Major,
his sisters, and Miss Savage, complained of a continued series of annoyances
on the part of Mrs Major, Miss Polsden aiding and abetting.
To perfect the system of annoyance, the defendants in the two summonses
took lodgings at a house directly facing the doctor's and availed
themselves of that position to annoy all who went in and out. It came
out, accidentally, that on one occasion vitriol was thrown over Miss
Savage, and a case arising out of the same cause was before this Court
some time since. Both Miss Savage and Doctor Major swore positively
that there were not the slightest grounds for Mrs Major's jealousy,
and the latter stated that, in addition to a considerable decline in his
professional practice, his health had been greatly impaired from the
unceasing annoyance to which he had been subjected. On Friday last
Miss Sarah Major, accompanied by Miss Savage and her nephew,
were proceeding for a day's recreation to Rosherville Gardens, at
Gravesend, when to their surprise and dismay, they found Mrs Major
and Miss Polsden at the King David lane railway station, about to proceeding
in the same train. They, however, got into different carriages,
and, on arriving at Blackwall, Miss Major and her friends took shelter
in the Brunswick Hotel, to get rid of their tormentors, and with the
same view waited for the second boat. On the passage down, however,
they found that Mrs Major and Miss Polsden with their party,
had also waited  for the same boat. Whilst walking up and down the
deck, as Miss Major approached Mrs Major, the latter said, "Sarah,
I am surprised to see you with that good for nothing thing (meaning
Miss Savage), knowing what has passed between her and your brother
." Miss Polsden then called Miss Major and Miss Savage
nasty, dirty, stinking wretches. Mrs Major frequently threatened
Miss Savage, and on one occasion, when the latter went with the
doctor to the George Tavern, to view some masonic paraphernalia,
the groom saw Mrs Major hanging about, and using threatening language.
When the parties first met at King David lane, on Friday,
Mrs Major and Miss Polsden made faces at Miss Major and Miss
Savage. For the defence, a lady named Ackman, who was with Mrs
Major, swore Miss Major and Miss Savage came up where Mrs Major
was, and made faces at them. It was not until this that Mrs Major
said "I am surprised, Sarah, to see you with that good for nothing
creature." Mr ingham suggested, that as the cause which led to
these heart burnings was pending in another court, the best way
would be for all parties to exercise a mutual forbearance, and avoid
coming in contact with each other. After some further conversation,
Mrs Major and Miss Polsden pledged their words that they would
sedulously avoid any contact with Doctor Major or his household, and
the summonses were dismissed.
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