Death of Mr. F. U. Sartoris, J.P.
We deeply regret to announce the death of Mr. F. U. Sartoris, J.P., which took place at Rushden Hall, at noon on Wednesday, in the sixty-eighth year of his age. Death resulted from cancer in the throat. Dr. Crew had been unremitting in his attention, and he had the assistance of leading specialists in cancer and throat affections. As a last resource, the operation of tracheotomy was performed by Dr. “Tom” Walker, of Peterborough, on Friday last, but this could only have prolonged his life for a brief period. Mr. Sartoris purchased Rushden Hall on his marriage forty-five years ago, and he has since made it essentially his home. His death recalls his somewhat prophetic utterance at the Jubilee festival, when he expressed a fear that he should not live to complete his Jubilee at Rushden, followed by the hopeful but pathetic utterance that he had no special wish to do so. He had identified himself with the parish, and earned the well-merited esteem of all with whom he came in contact. Readily accessible to all, his aim seemed to be looked up to as the friend and neighbour of all rather than as the parish “squire.” He was a Churchman and Conservative of decided views, but he always appeared to enter the political arena with reluctance, preferring to wield a powerful influence in the councils of his party to any public advocacy of his views. A Tory of the older school his tenants and dependents looked to him as naturally for guidance as he for their allegiance. He was a manager and one of the founders of the National Schools, having given the ground on which they stand, and a handsome donation towards their erection. Of the School Board system he had a natural aversion, and for a time fought against it with great vigour. This was the only question on which he ever found himself actively at variance with any large number of his neighbours, but after a time this wore off, and not many days before his death he sent a message of kindly greetings to an old antagonist, coupled with the quite unnecessary assurance that all ill-feeling had long been buried. He was a prominent member of the Oakley Hunt, and although in recent years his increased weight had prevented his following the hounds, his keen love of the sport had taken him to every “meet” within any reasonable distance, where in memory he could indulge in reminiscences of the many successful runs in which he had taken part. As a county magistrate, mercy has always characterised his decisions, and the Wellingborough Division has in consequence earned a well-deserved reputation for leniency. As early as the year 1856 Mr. Sartoris was called upon to fill the important office of High Sheriff for the county. He was elected Churchwarden in the year 1851, and at the time of his death he was the people’s warden at the Parish Church. Mr. Sartoris sat on the Rushden Church Restoration Committee, and headed the subscription list with a handsome donation. Four alms-houses for aged parishioners were erected by the deceased gentleman in memory of his eldest son, Mr. Frederick Maitland Sartoris, second secretary of Her Majesty’s Embassy, at Constantinople, who died on January 5th, 1883, aged 38 years, and was buried in the English Cemetery at Scutari. Mr. Sartoris married Mary Ann, daughter of the late Rev. Joseph Pratt, Parston, near Peterborough, the surviving issue being Mr. Herbert Sartoris, Lady Robinson (wife of Sir F. L. Robinson), Mrs. Craven, and Miss Evelyn Sartoris. Few but his tenants know of the large abatements of rent Mr. Sartoris made to meet the agricultural depression, while the poor have lost a cheerful and bountiful giver. What manner of man he was at home may be judged by a cross erected in Rushden Churchyard to the memory of an old servant who lived in the family for forty-two years. The funeral takes place on Saturday afternoon, shortly after two o’clock.