This is a story about the painful death about what happened to my relative Laura Dibble.
Firstly, some general information about her. Laura was the second child of eight born to Edwin Dibble and Ann Parsons.
She was born in 1875 in Bicknoller, a village in Somerset. Her father was a farm labourer.
However, in the winter of 1878, Laura died by burning caused by a benzoline lamp as told in the newspaper article below from the Bristol Mercury, published 18 December 1878:
A child four years of age named Laura Dibble. The mother of the child placed a benzoline lamp on the oven by the side of the fire and in her absence the child knocked it down into the fire, igniting her clothes and before it could be put out she received so much injury that she died.
Verdict - Accidental Death.
So quite a horrific death! But the date it was published is before the date in the Bicknoller parish records (transcriptions, so I will have to check the date at the heritage centre) that said she died. The inquest was on the day before.
The parish records (transcriptions) say that she died on the 20 December 1878, but that could be a mistranscription of 10. As well as saying she was three years old.
The article says she was four years old, compared to the parish records and BMD entries saying she was born 1875 and died 1878. However, she was born in the first quarter of 1875 and therefore could be very close to four years old.
It does seem there were a lot of deaths like this, it even happened to a relative of Gregg Wallace, as he found out on his 'Who Do You Think You Are?' episode. But it is now much safer, in heating, nowadays as we have much safer ways to stay warm.
Published: 4 September 2014
*Note - No copyright infringement was intended. If there is a breach in copyright contact me through the 'Contact' section so it can be removed. All photos are Copyright © 2014 Harry Clarke. All Rights Reserved. Apart from the picture of fire on the home page which is property of Ashley Nummerdor.