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Anti-vaccination Society

26 January 1878 - Northampton Mercury

Joseph Lambert, shoemaker, Rushden, for neglecting have his child vaccinated accordance with the Vaccination Act.—Mr. Packwood, the vaccination-officer, proved …

Wellingborough News, 9th December 1882, transcribed by Kay Collins

ANTI-VACCINATION ANNIVERSARY AT RUSHDEN On Tuesday a public tea and public meeting were held in the large hall of the Coffee Tavern to celebrate the anniversary of the Anti-vaccination Society. There was a good attendance at the evening meeting. The Rev, G. Garlick presided. A resolution was moved by Mr. Burrows condemnatory of the compulsory clauses of the Vaccination Acts as un-English and contrary to common sense; that vaccination was not a preventive of small-pox, and that it was the cause of other diseases in many cases. The resolution was seconded by Mr. Close, of Wellingborough, and supported in a lengthy address. The speaker stated that there were more cases, and more fatal cases, of small-pox now than before the introduction of vaccination. He strongly insisted that it was not natural nor in accordance with common sense to insert pollution into the blood of a child to keep it pure. He argued that the injurious effects were known to the Government, hence it was only healthy children who were vaccinated, as it would kill those who were weakly. That some doctors advocated the system was only natural, seeing they received £300 or £400 per year for it, and hence he did not accept their testimony as impartial. He then proceeded to read cases of syphilis, erysipelas, inflammation, and other diseases that were caused by vaccination, and in which death often ensued. He next quoted several cases of "martyrdom for conscience' sake," in which fines and imprisonment were inflicted for non-compliance with the Ace. He then combatted the statement that all the medical profession were in favour of vaccination, and quoted eminent men in the medical, literary, and political world, who denounced it as a farce. He denied that the Government had any right to compel vaccination; it was a law for the rich, and not the poor, as the rich could afford to pay the fines, and the poor could not. He cited a case of a man being fined £19 for one child; another who had served seven periods of imprisonment. He concluded by repeating that the Act was against reason, equity, and justice, and ought to be struck off the statute book, and that parents ought to have the power to say if their child should be "done" or not. —The Rev. G. Pung supported the resolution. He said he had suffered from vaccination, and it had cost him £40 to cure the evils he had suffered from that source. He and two of his daughters were vaccinated, and they had the small-pox very badly. He should join the society, as he was opposed to compulsion.—The Chairman spoke to the same effect, and said he had lost two children through vaccination.—The resolution was carried unanimously, and copies have since been sent to the Local Government Board and to Mr. P. A. Taylor, M.P. The usual votes of thanks concluded the meeting.

Wellingborough News, 20th January 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins

ANTI-VACCINATION—Two persons who were fined at Petty Sessions some weeks since, for non-compliance with the Vaccination Acts, having refused to pay the fines and costs inflicted upon them, the police entered their houses on Monday last, and marked several articles of furniture for subsequent sale by auction. At one house the goods marked included a clock, which the owner immediately afterwards placed in his window ticketed "going to be vaccinated." There seems every probability of the goods having to be sold.

Wellingborough News, 27th January 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins

VACCINATION—On Sunday evening Mr. J. Burns gave a lecture in the New Hall, entitled "Vaccination as a religious question; or, is it in accordance with the will of God." The Hall was crowded. The Rev. G. Garlick presided, and the proceedings were opened by the audience singing the hymn, ''Standing by a purpose true," from Sankey's hymn book, after which the rev. gentleman read the 6th chap, of Micah, and offered prayer. Then the audience sang "Hold the fort." The Chairman said he did not know how to say "No" to the deputation that waited upon him and asked him to preside, to assist him in raising the question from the secular to the sacred. For himself he could hardly distinguish between the two, as everything that was good to a religious man was sacred. He then introduced Mr. Burns, who took a verse from the Gospel by St. Matthew, on the sin of offending the little ones. He said his opinion of religion was to cease from doing evil and learning to do well, and was expressed by the Apostle in the words, "Do thyself no harm," but vaccination never said so, as it did harm to the helpless children. The usual arguments on the question were then advanced as to the origin of vaccination, how the matter was procured, and the evil results following in some cases. The treatment of small-pox, and the passing of the Compulsory Act in the small hours of the morning, and the interested motives of the medical profession in supporting the system were touched upon, and the way magistrates carried out the act also came in for criticism. He considered the whole system degrading, immoral, and irreligious. The lecture was listened to with the greatest attention.

Wellingborough News, 27th January 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins

Anti-Vaccination Demonstration at Rushden and Wellingborough
On Wednesday morning last, Inspector Nash and a posse of police officers seized the goods of Samuel Parker, of Church-street, and Andrew Groom, of Denton's-cottages, both of Rushden, for non-payment of fines and costs under vaccination summonses. The fine in each case amounted to 5s., and 9s. 6d. costs, and as the goods had been marked previously, the seizure was not un-anticipated, and the defendants and their friends had matured their plans with a view of protesting against what they regard as an unjust enactment. At Parker's house the police were met by the Temperance Brass Band and a crowd of several hundred persons, and a good deal of "chaff " was indulged in. The crowd, however, appeared to recognise that the police were acting under orders, and consequently there was very little disorder, and the goods were obtained without difficulty upon the Inspector's assurance that the place and time of sale would be duly announced. The officers then proceeded to Groome's accompanied by the musical escort, and the rapidly increasing crowd. The second seizure having been effected, the goods were brought over to the Wellingborough police station previous to being sold. The goods seized in the first case consisted of a clock, timepiece, and table; and in the second of a pier glass, dining table, easy chair, and couch. The departure of the police for Wellingborough appeared to be the signal for a general stampede of the able-bodied inhabitants. All sorts of vehicles were requisitioned, while others came by railway, and a large number on "Shanks's pony." In readiness for the demonstration a goodly number of banners had been provided, and on the bulk of the party reaching London-road they formed into procession, and with band playing and banners flying invaded the town. The route included all the main streets, and by the time the procession had returned to the Market-square there was a crowd, most of whom appeared to be in sympathy with the anti-vaccinationists. The banners bore the following inscriptions—"Down with medical despotism," "Keep your children's blood pure," "Self compiled Statistics are the only weapons of the vaccinatons," "Down with centralization," "£200,000 spent in vaccination fees annually," "They that are well need not a physician," "No blood poisoning," and also an effective pictorial device. The sale was expected to take place at two o'clock, and as there was an interval of nearly an hour, a cart was procured, and addresses were given denouncing the Vaccination Act by Mr. Amos Booth, of Leicester, and Mr. G. H. Burrows, and a resolution was passed protesting against any auctioneer selling the goods. By this time two o'clock had arrived, but no auctioneer put in an appearance, and it soon became understood that Mr. Pendered under the circumstances, declined to sell. This was somewhat disappointing to the crowd, but there was no help for it, and gradually the demonstration melted away as the time for the afternoon trains drew on. In the evening, however, a crowded meeting was held in the Board Schools, Rushden, under the presidency of Mr. Burrows, when a vigorous speech was given by Mr. Booth. On the motion of Mr. Joseph Mackness, seconded by Mr. David Crick, a resolution was passed pledging the meeting to resist compulsory vaccination. It will be seen from our police report that a further batch of summonses returnable to-day have been postponed.

Wellingborough News, 3rd February 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins


DEAR SIR,—Allow me to draw your attention to the extraordinary conduct of the police authorities in connection with the recent vaccination prosecutions at Rushden. Two of our members had distress warrants issued against them for non-payment of fines and costs inflicted under the iniquitous Vaccination Act. After the usual five days from marking the goods, which I might here remark were marked illegally (not being marked between the hours of sun-rise and sun-set), the police, under Inspector Nash, came and removed the goods to Wellingborough, informing us that they would be sold by public auction on the Market-square at two o'clock on Wednesday last, but the auctioneer, from some cause or other, failed to put in an appearance, and after waiting until four o'clock we were informed that the sale would not take place. Yet, sir, these honest men's goods were not brought back, as they should have been, the Act distinctly stating that the goods cannot be removed until the day of the sale; but the police kept them at the Station, the police informing our friends that they would be duly informed when the sale would take place. But, sir, in spite of this assurance of the ex-officio bailiffs, the goods were brought up on the Market-square on Saturday night at five o'clock, and, starting a specially improvised crier round under the protection of two of the aforesaid officers, the sale immediately commenced, without the slightest intimation being given to the two persons to whom the property belonged. Instructions also appear to have been given to a bystander to run the price of the goods up, for whose services we no doubt shall be called upon to pay. Under these illegal circumstances the sale proceeded, the gentleman auctioneer of the town undertaking to sell the goods.

What we want to know, sir, is, upon whose authority these distress warrants were issued? Was it the magistrates, or was it the vaccination officer, or was it the Guardians, who it certainly should have been? They say, however, that these matters are never brought before the Board; then, sir, who is it that orders these prosecutions? It appears to me, sir, that the vaccination officer has exceeded his duty in not bringing these matters before the Board, instead of taking upon himself the responsibility.

Hoping that ratepayers and Guardians alike may have their eyes open to the illegal manner in which these proceedings have been carried out,

I am, yours truly,

Northcote Villa, Rushden,
January 30th, 1882.

Wellingborough News, 10th February 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins

Friday, Feb. 9.—Before Mr. H. M. Stockdale (in the chair), Mr. F. U. Sartoris, Mr. N. P. Sharman, Mr. C. J. K. Woolston, and Lieut.-Col. Rawlins.

THE RUSHDEN ANTI-VACCINATIONISTSJohn Hazeldine, Thomas Baker, Frederick Ellis, John Sanders, George Garley, William Rice, and George Frederick Claridge, all of Rushden, were summoned for breaches of the Vaccination Act. Rice and Sanders did not appear. Ellis's child was a year old and had not yet been vaccinated. He said that with his opinions about vaccination, he dare not have his child vaccinated. Fined 1s. and 9s. 6d. costs, a destraint to issue in default. Defendant Baker contended that vaccination had been a great failure, and Hazeldine said that two or three deaths had occurred in his own family through it. Claridge said that one of his own children had greatly suffered. Garley also objected on conscientious grounds. After a few words of advice from the Bench, the usual orders were made. The other cases were adjourned.

Wellingborough News, 26th May 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins

Friday, May 25th —Before Mr. R. W. Arkwright (in the chair), Mr. N. P. Sharman and Mr. Spencer Pratt.

ANTI-VACCINATION CASES—George Wm. Button, Thomas W. Field, and Wm. Sanders Ladd, of Rushden, were summoned by Mr. G. K. Packwood for the non-vaccination of their children. Field was not present, being at present, under training with the militia. The defendant Button said he had seen a great deal of mischief result from vaccination, and said that he felt so strongly that he could not agree to pay. Fined 1s. and costs, a distress warrant to issue if not paid—Field's case was adjourned.

Wellingborough News, 8th December 1883, transcribed by Kay Collins

ANTI-COMPULSORY VACCINATION LEAGUE—On Saturday last, the third annual meeting and tea was held in the Primitive Methodist Mission-room on the Green. Tea was served on the tables at five o'clock, at which some 70 members, with their wives and friends, sat down. After tea a business meeting was held, when the following were elected officers for the ensuing year:—President. Mr. N. Crick; vice-president, Mr. F. Vorley; secretary, Mr. D. P. Boyd ; financial secretary, Mr. J. Green; treasurer, Mr. C. Denton; collectors, Mr. W. Ladds and Mr. J. Hazeldine. The report was very favourable, showing 120 members on the books.

Wellingborough News, 16th February 1884, transcribed by Kay Collins

Friday, Feb. 8.—Before Mr. Spencer Pratt (in the chair), Mr. N. P. Sharman, and Col. Rawlins.

A RUSHDEN ANTI-VACCINATIONIST—John Drage, Rushden, was lined 1s. and 9s. 6d. costs for not having his daughter vaccinated.—Mr. G. Packwood proved the offence.

Wellingborough News, 28th June 1884, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Police Court
Friday, June 27th.—Before Mr. Charles J. K. Woolston (in the chair), and Mr. N. P. Sharman.

RUSHDEN VACCINATION CASESCharles Whitney, Joseph Barley, and Joseph Miller, all of Rushden, were summoned for not having their children vaccinated. Barley did not appear. Mr. Packwood proved the cases. Both defendants urged conscientious objections to vaccination. They were fined 5s. and 9s. 6d. costs each, or in default distress warrants to issue.

Wellingborough News, 12th July 1884, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Police Court
Friday, July 11th. — Before Mr. Spencer Pratt (in the chair), and Mr. C. J. K. Woolston.

NON- VACCINATIONJoseph Barley, of Rushden, who did not appear at the last Sessions, was brought up on a warrant for not having his child vaccinated. Mr. G. F. Packwood proved the case. Defendant objected to have his child vaccinated, alleging that be had lost three, if not four children, through vaccination. Fined 5s., and 15s. 5d. costs. Defendant said he could not pay, and a distress warrant was ordered to be issued.

ASSAULT AT RUSHDENGeorge White, and Hephzibah White, mother and son, of Rushden, were summoned for assaulting Betsy Baker at Rushden, on 28th June.—Complainant stated that she went into the yard to do her work, when George White threw some water on her, and Mrs. White hit her with a towel in the face.—Elizabeth Baker spoke to seeing Mrs. White rubbing complainant in the face with a towel, and also to seeing the son throw some water at her.—P.C. Lyman said when he saw complainant she was in a wet condition.— For the defence the son stated that the complainant threw some water over himself first, and Mrs. White said that the two witnesses for the prosecution were two old maids, and were very very disagreeable neighbours. (Laughter.)—Mrs. Allibone was called to prove that complainant threw some water on the son first, and that Mrs. White did not commit an assault—Each defendant was fined and 9s. 6d. costs.

Wellingborough News, 2nd August 1884, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Police Court
Friday, July 25.—Before Mr. Spencer Pratt (in the chair), Mr. N. P. Sharman, and Lieut. Colonel Thornton,

VACCINATION CASEGeorge F. Claridge, of Rushden, who did not appear last week, was brought up charged with a breach of the Vaccination Act by not having his child vaccinated. Mr. G. F. Packwood proved the case. Fined 5s. and 15s. 3d. costs. Distress warrant in default.—Robert Smith, of Rushden, was summoned for not having a child born last year, vaccinated. Fined 5s. and 9s. 6d. costs. A distress warrant was issued.

Wellingborough News, 9th August 1884, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Police Court
Friday, August 8th.—Before Mr. N. P. Sharman (in the chair), and Mr. C. J. K. Woolston.

VACCINATION CASESWilliam Abbott and John Bull, young men, of Rushden, were fined 5s. and 9s. 6d. costs for not having their children vaccinated. Mr. G. F. Packwood proved the cases.

Northampton Mercury, Saturday 18 June, 1887, transcribed by Jane Linnitt

Wellingborough Petty Sessions
Friday – Before Mr H M Stockdale (in the chair), Mr N P Sharman, Mr C J K Woolston, and Col. Sotheby.

Twenty Nine Anti-VaccinatorsGeorge Arthur Sanders, Charles Whiting, Frederick L Jones, Wm Hooton, Joseph Pratt, Samuel Hullett, George Partridge, Fredk Ellis, Frederick Chapman, Alfred Linnett, Thomas William Field, John Macdonald, Harry M Goodwin, Abel Brown, George Barker, Charles King, Frederick Maddams, William Scroxton, John Mead, Samuel Walker, Walter Denton, William Billingham, George Perkins, Thomas Freeman, John Linnett, William Freeman, all of Rushden, Rueben Slater and Charles Riddle of Irchester were summoned by George R Turner, of Irchester, for not having their children vaccinated. – Several of the defendants made speeches. – Fined 1s. and 9s. 6d costs.

Rushden - Anti Vaccinators at Wellingborough - As will be seen by our police report, 27 Rushden people and two from Irchester, were summoned for not having their children vaccinated. They drove to the court in a couple of breaks, on the first of which were some banners inscribed, “Rushden Anti-Vaccination League” and “No Blood Poisoning”. A report of the proceedings before the magistrates will appear in Saturday's Daily Report.

Wellingborough & Kettering News 06/09/1889, transcribed by Peter Brown

Anti-Vaccination Meeting at Rushden
On Monday evening a meeting of anti-vaccinators was held in the Public Hall to protest against the continued prosecutions of defaulters under the Vaccination Acts, and to request the Guardians to suspend such proceedings until the report of the Royal Commission on Vaccination shall be known. The Rev. T. G. Harpur presided, and was supported on the platform by Messrs. C. Wicksteed (Kettering), D. P. Boyd, N. Crick, W. Ladds, and F. Vorley.

The Chairman, in opening the proceedings, said that although it would be possible for those who believed in vaccination to support the resolution which would be submitted to the meeting, he was present that evening as an uncompromising advocate of the cause which Mr. Wicksteed would put before the audience. He had proved the depth of his convictions by meeting two prosecutions—on each occasion arguing the matter before the magistrates—being convicted, and paying the piper to the tune of about 36s. Doctors were not always to be relied upon, when their interests were at stake, and they might as reasonably expect doctors to support anti-vaccination as brewers and publicans to say that total abstinence was beneficial. Mr. D. P. Boyd then tersely moved the following resolution:—"That this meeting emphatically protests against the continued prosecutions by the Board of Guardians of defaulters under the Vaccination Acts during the sitting of the Royal Commission on Vaccination, and respectfully urges upon them the advisability of suspending all such prosecutions until the report of the Commission shall be published.

Mr. N. Crick having briefly seconding the same, the resolution was supported by Mr. C. Wicksteed of Kettering, who after stating that he had been an anti-vaccinationist for nine years, related to the audience the circumstances which led to his convictions on the subject, which was by reading and studying the best evidence he could obtain, and logically thinking the matter out. He was convinced that there was no similarity between the vaccination of the children of the rich and the children of the poor, and if the children of the wealthy had to take pot luck with the children of the poor before the public vaccinators he was confident that rather than submit the wealthy parents would be found resisting the law. The reason why so many of the medical profession supported vaccination was because they were prejudiced, they were not disinterested, and they had not studied the question for themselves. If the doctors were given 2s. 6d. for each child they did not think it necessary to vaccinate, in twelve months’ time there would be no more vaccination. If it were not for thesupport of the doctors, vaccination would soon go down, and as soon as they found themselves out of pocket by it they would study the question, and when they studied the question they would soon arrive at the truth. He was ready to take a doctor’s advice but not a doctor’s dictation. Mr. Wicksteed then gave some statistics respecting the mortality of vaccinated and unvaccinated persons in Sheffield, referred to the theory of Dr. Pasteur, of Paris, and quoted from the writings of Dr. P. Allinson. He urged all to study the question for themselves so that whatever their decision might be, they would have a good and solid reason for the course they adopted.

Mr. W. Ladds proposed, and Mr. Foster Vorley seconded the following resolution:— "That this meeting hereby appoints Messrs. D. P. Boyd, N. Crick, and the Rev. T. G. Harpur, as a deputation to lay its views upon this question before the Board of Guardians at its next meeting." This having been unanimously adopted, the usual votes of thanks were accorded and the proceedings terminated.

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