Wednesday 14th October 1846

“Bought eight prints (portraits) at Printsellers, Princes Street, Soho, 8d. A destructive fire broke out about 5 o’clock this morning at the Red Lion Public House corner Wild Street, Lincolns Inn Fields, which entirely destroyed the stock in trade and furniture and must have burnt very fierce although … was hardly damaged. Went to see it in the evening.”

[Editor’s note: No entry on 15 October]

Tuesday 6th October 1846  

“Bought very nice book, ‘The Memoirs of George III’, at Miscellaneous Repository, Princes Street, Soho. Suicide of the Swiss Giantess this evening for particulars see next day. I knew deceased well by sight and spoke to her once in Leicester Square the 18th September last concerning a fire that then illuminated the skies and which was the last time I saw her. She was biggest woman I ever saw, standing about 6 feet 3 inches in height and proportionally fuller.”

Monday 6th July 1846

“Grosvenor Canal, Pimlico, water let out for the mud to be taken away, which occurs annually. Evening, after business, some of the coalheavers with a net dragged the canal and caught fish of variety – a cold damp evening to be paddling about up to the armpits in mud and water. Purchased eight old prints this evening in Princes Street, opposite George Yard. Chief Justice Sir Connyngham Tyndale died at his temporary residence near Folkestone aged 70 years.”

[Editor’s note: The Chief Justice’s name was Sir Nicholas Conyngham Tindal]


Saturday 25th April 1846

“Mary Duchess of Gloucester, daughter of George III, this day completes her 70th year. Diabolical murder and apprehension of the assassin. This evening, about 20 minutes to 9 o’clock, a murder was committed by a youth aged 16 by name John Graham on the body of Thomas Blewitt aged 36 by shooting him with a pistol in the open street by Morgan’s Cook Shop in Drury Lane, near Princes Street. The bullet entered his right breast and came out through the shoulder bone. No motive is yet known for the act.”

Wednesday 18th March 1846

“Mr John Langan, better known as Jack Langan the pugilist, breathed his last at the house of Mrs Ellis, Five Lanes End, near Neston, Cheshire. Jack passed through many vicissitudes of fortune and at length realised for himself a very handsome independence.  Went to Jones’s Auction Rooms, Princes Street, Soho, and there saw a very eccentric character, by name Thomas Williamson, who liveth in lodgings in Somers Place, New Road, and presenteth a very singular appearance, always dressing alike viz: a pair of old corduroy trousers, with an old brown great coat, white neckhandkerchief and an old hat short-crown, which I remember him to have worn for the last four years. He built a great portion of Somers Tower as Church Way and many of the small tenements at the back of Wilsted Street, Brewer Street, and about the neighbourhood of the Brill. His buildings are mostly distinguished by his initials TW and the date, which are about 1820. His age now is between 60 and 70 and I should think nearly approaching latter.”

Thursday 12th March 1846

“Shortly after 3 o’clock this morning a fire broke out upon the premises of Mr Kneller, bullion dealer and refiner, 60 Princes Street, Leicester Square.  It originated in the smelting house the back of the dwelling and when first discovered it threatened very serious consequences.  The speedy arrival of four engines prevented the flames from extending further, but the … entirely extinguished … the stock in trade, fixtures, utensils in the smelting house were very consumed … .”