The following report, which appeared in The Scotsman on Wednesday the 11th of October 1876, in many ways, reminiscent of the Lambeth poisoning case by Dr. Thomas Neill Cream that occurred in 1892.
DOUBLE MURDER IN LONDON YESTERDAY
Mr Carter held an inquiry at the Lord Clyde, Vauxhall, London into the cause of death of Ellen Sloper, aged 27, of 18 Leopold Street , Vauxhall, who is alleged to have been murdered, together with her child, by Silas Barlow, a platelayer , of 21 Queen Street, Battersea, who is the paramour of the woman and the supposed father of the child .
HE GAVE HER SOME SARSAPARILLA
It transpired that he visited the deceased on the 3rd of September, but, directly after he left, the woman, although she had been perfectly well up to then, was seized with convulsions, which continued until the next day when she got better.
She told her landlady that Barlow had given her some sarsaparilla to strengthen her.
She got perfectly well again, and was in excellent health on the 10th of September, when Barlow again visited her, and remained with her all day.
SUFFERING STRONG CONVULSIONS
At 9.30 P . M . Barlow called the landlady’s s attention to the deceased, who, he said, was suffering from convulsions, and upon Mrs Wilson proceeding upstairs she discovered the deceased lying across the bed in terrible agony and suffering from strong convulsions.
She complained that Barlow had given her some more of “that nasty sarsaparilla stuff,” upon which he replied that “he had had more than she had, and he was all right.”
The poor creature continued to suffer acutely for some time and she died at two in the morning.
THE BABY FOUND IN A RESERVOIR
The next night Barlow called at the house, and he took away the baby, and its body was shortly afterwards found in a reservoir at Battersea.
An inquest was held on the child , and a verdict of murder was returned, and an inquest was then deemed necessary in the case of the woman.
IT WAS A POISONING
Barlow was then apprehended, and Detective Hazell having searched his lodgings, found three sarsaparilla bottles, which were handed to Dr Lees for analysis.
Dr Lees proved that the woman had died from poisoning by strychnine, and that upon analysing the contents of the small sarsaparilla bottle, which was found nearly empty at the lodgings of Barlow, strychnine was discovered in several samples .
A VERDICT OF MURDER
The jury at once returned a verdict of murder against Barlow, and the Coroner issued his warrant for the prisoner to take his trial at the next Old Bailey Sessions.
At his Old Bailey trial, Silas Barlow was found guilty of the murder of Ellen Sloper, and was sentenced to death.