LOOK BACK IN TIME: 17 March 1855

The IW Observer published on 17th March, 1855 told the tale of a landlady struggling with a tenant not paying her rent, which resulted in a cat fight. The magistrates seemed to take the view it was six of one, half a dozen of the other.


MONDAY. – Before C. W. Estcourt, Esq., Mayor, and E. Way, Esq.

Mary Anne Young was summoned for an assault on Anne Ealing.

The complainant, on being sworn, said, I am the wife of Robert Ealing. I live in Scarrots-lane, Newport. Defendant has been my lodger at 2s. a week. Last Friday evening she was going to give up her room. She owed some rent, 5s. 6d. up to to-day. I told her she must leave something until she paid her rent. She came down stairs with her box, and I locked the front door to prevent her taking the box out, unless she left something as security for the rent. Then she asked me to let her out, which I refused to do. I stood with my back against the door. She pushed me twice to try to try to get at the door. Then she slapped my in the face. I had not struck her then. Then she went and opened the window, and called to Emma Salter to take the box through the window. She said two or three times that I rose her temper. I told her I did not care for her temper, nor for her either. She said she would smash the window. I told her she may do as she liked about that. Then she broke one square and cracked another. Then she began pulling my cap off and pulling my hair. I put up my hand to defend myself, and tore her bonnet off. That was the first time I had touched her, and it was after she had touched my hair. She shewed her bonnet through the window, and threw a flowerpot on the floor, and said she would smash everything in the house. She said she would go up stairs and tear my bonnet. She went up to my bed-room, but did not do anything.

The defendant having cross-summoned the complainant for a similar assault, the magistrates through it best to dismiss both cases, upon Young paying 1s. for the damage done to the window.